Judayah Murray is a student at Howard University and a Youtuber with the account BlackGirlsYouTubeToo and she is known for talking about HBCU and all things college-related. She has 12,510 subscribers and a total of 1,024,486 views who all tune in to watch her life tips, advice, and college vlogs.
Sammi: To those who have never seen it, how would you describe your channel?
Judayah: Imagine a dorky, yet somewhat oddly slaying, skinny, college-aged black girl sitting in front of her camera every week doing "catfishing" makeup tutorials, giving advice or vlogging around campus. That's #BlackGirlsYouTubeToo and she does it for Y-O-U!
Why did you choose the name Blackgirlsyoutubetoo?
I think with this platform, and other rising social media platforms as well, my demographic is often virtually erased. Just by saying my name, people HAVE to acknowledge that people of color can do this too. And we don't just do makeup, we don't just provide hilarious commentary while gaming or through skits, we can do anything and everything. And we're pretty good at it all too. Some people see the name and get offended, but its purpose is not to diminish any other group on the platform. I just want to finally acknowledge this one.
"Just by saying my name, people HAVE to acknowledge that people of color can do this too."
What is something you are always trying to instill in your subscribers?
I'm always trying to instill this idea that anything is possible. In my videos, I often talk about my humble beginnings with about 10 subscribers for the first few months of my inception. Each of those subscribers being my own family members. I explain that things do take time, but not to get discouraged. Ever. Not with school, not with youtube, not with work or religion. Faith, patience, and a strong work ethic can go a long way.
Why did you choose to go to Howard, what is the significance of Howard to you?
Howard University will always have a special place in my heart because this is where I finally learned to love myself. Howard is a historically black university in the heart of Washington, D.C. that houses some of the most beautiful and brightest young black professionals. Walking on this campus every day, sitting in classrooms where some of the greatest African Americans of our time have walked and sat...it does something to me. I wasn't always confident in how I looked or how I carried myself, but a lot of that changed when I came to college. There's no time to doubt yourself here. Either you are, or you aren't...and I am.
"Walking on this campus every day, sitting in classrooms where some of the greatest African Americans of our time have walked and sat...it does something to me."
What are you majoring in and why?
At Howard University, I study broadcast journalism and graphic design. My biggest dream is to be the host of my own talk show and I think that those journalistic and anchoring skills are helping me greatly along this path to get there. I also study graphic design because I love expressing myself creatively. Putting concepts or drawings to life on the computer is so amazing to me. I can never wait to learn new techniques to continue to challenge myself every day.
Has the color of your skin impacted your life on a daily basis?
I will never not be Black. When I was little, that simple fact used to tear me apart. I was made fun of and ridiculed daily for being the only black girl around. I didn't know many people who looked like me that I could look to, besides my mother and sisters. It was hard growing up without that representation and having to find a way for myself, but today that simple fact is what drives and motivates me to keep striving. Accepting my blackness means accepting the position that I never got to see when I was growing up: the role model.
How do you deal with your insecurities?
Most of my biggest insecurities are easily fixable with long-term care or makeup for quick fixes, so honestly, I just...conceal them. I have freckles and dark spots on my cheeks so I've been working on finding a trusty skin care regimen that keeps me glowing, but when I start to get a little discouraged, I just pop on a little foundation and I'm good to go!
What is your relationship with makeup and how has it changed since you were younger?
When I was little, I used to sneak into my mom's makeup bag when she left for work and throw on a thin strip of eyeshadow and some mascara before the bus came to get me for school! When I turned 16, I was finally allowed to wear it. I loved dramatic looks and costume makeup, so I didn't wear makeup often, only when it was appropriate to wear bolder colors. Now, I wear whatever I want, whenever I want to! The bolder the better!
Any advice to other African American girls who want to start a Youtube Channel?
Girl, I need you to get like Nike and JUST DO IT! My biggest fear is of failure, but if I never even try, I'll never know what I was capable of. Sometimes, it's important to just take the risk. Maybe only 10 people will watch you, but with that work ethic, you'll grow! Don't worry about your subscriber count anyway! Produce content because it makes you happy to share!
"Produce content because it makes you happy to share!"
How do you define beauty and what do you find most beautiful about yourself? How do you celebrate your beauty?
Beauty, to me, is the exhibition of both confidence and grace. I consider that definition because I feel beautiful when I feel confident. I think my smile is the most beautiful thing about me and so I would say that I celebrate this beauty by always trying to think positive and live my happiest life. That way, I can do more smiling!