CoverGirl signs James Charles as first male spokesmodel

CoverGirl spokesmodels Katy Perry and James Charles.
(Lacey Terrell / WWD)

CoverGirl is getting a cover boy. The Coty Inc.-owned brand today revealed its first male CoverGirl, James Charles. Charles, a 17-year-old makeup artist from New York, is well known for the Instagram handle @jcharlesbeauty featuring his designs and boasting almost a half-million followers.

The brand said in a statement released today, “All of our CoverGirls are role models and boundary-breakers, fearlessly expressing themselves, standing up for what they believe, and redefining what it means to be beautiful. James Charles is no exception.”

Charles demonstrates his makeup looks on both women and men — himself included. Not to be confused with Maybelline’s fashion week push involving Cindy Crawford’s son Presley Gerber, the signing of Charles to CoverGirl appears to be more of a gender-blurring strategy than a move to capture the attention of the young girls following teen male models on social media.

As part of his contract with CoverGirl, Charles will appear in next month’s campaign for CoverGirl So Lashy mascara, which is formulated to be universally flattering and “work on all lash types.” The campaign includes digital, print, television, social media and PAs. He will also share how-tos and tips content on his and the brand’s social media channels throughout the rest of the year.


Gender-blurring continues to be a trend in beauty. This fall, Giorgio Armani launched a line of tinted lip balms, billed “for him-her.” Anastasia Beverly Hills has been known to feature its makeup on male models.