If you love binging reality television shows, this one's for you, beauty junkies. It's called Beauty Bound, and yes, the whole show is already available on YouTube for your viewing pleasure. Having just finished its second season, Beauty Bound is a reality series by SK-II that follows contestants from eight countries (Japan, Malaysia, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Indonesia, Singapore, Thailand, and Korea) as they compete to become Asia's Next Top Beauty Creator (i.e. your new favorite, YouTube beauty-guru). And the structure of this competition is pretty cool.
Each country has its own series of videos where you can watch introductions from its eight contestants along with the preliminary challenges. These challenges, which consist of tasks like unboxing tutorials and creating collaboration videos are given strict time limits to really test the contestants' abilities to film, edit, and upload a video under pressure. Finale judge, Chiara Ferragni from The Blonde Salad, tells me that these challenges are totally realistic when it comes to creating content for a social channel: "The life of a content creator is fast-paced, and everything needs to happen in real time on social media. It is all about knowing which moment is the best and capturing that in line with an idea or theme you have for the day or week."
And the best part is, not only can you watch all of the behind-the-scenes action on the show, but you can also watch each contestant's uploaded content from the challenges. That way, you can see every video that is being judged on the show. Pretty cool, right?
To help judge and mentor each group of beauty vloggers, Beauty Bound enlisted the help of local social media personalities and creators. So, for example, Queenie Chan, creative guru from Hong Kong; Jung Saem Mool, celebrity makeup artist from Korea; Tashy, leading beauty creator from Malaysia; and Risa Sekine, leading beauty influencer from Japan, guided the contestants from their respective countries throughout the competition.
Once the top beauty creator from each country was selected, those eight contestants, along with one wildcard contestant, met in a new location for a final showdown to determine who Asia's Next Top Beauty Creator would be. In addition to creating a video, each contestant also had to manage her or his social media channels to earn real-time engagement points. And according to Ferragni, the winners for each challenge in addition to the finale were chosen "based on overall creativity, expressing authenticity as a creator, and ability to understand their audience to create content that was highly engaging and entertaining." And all under tight time crunches. Sounds pretty tough if you ask me.
Of course, since the early rounds of this competition were completed in the contestants' home countries, and therefore local languages, not every video is available in English. However, subtitles are available on certain videos and the Singapore and Malaysia branches as well as the finale are presented in English. What's great about this competition though, is you don't really need to understand what is being said to follow along— it's still fun to see the types of content fellow beauty junkies from around the world create. After all, beauty is kind of a universal language.
Curious to see who won the title of Asia's Next Top Beauty Creator? You can check out the entire second season of Beauty Bound on YouTube now.