I think the title of my post says it all. I met Fleur DeForce! Yes, that Fleur DeForce. The YouTube beauty guru sensation who has over a million subscribers, now has her own false eyelash line, a makeup line, and is a published author. To many of you, this is probably not a big deal, and in truth, it’s not. However, let me explain why Monday night had me fan-girling like a 15 year old at a One Direction concert.
Fleur’s YouTube channel is one of the first ones I found when I started watching beauty girls on YouTube 5 or so years ago. I have been watching her ever since. I love her accent (she’s from the UK), her knowledge, her style, and her amazing personality that I could only hope was her real personality and not just a staged thing. Through her videos she talks beauty and fashion, took her viewers along as she planned her wedding, vlogs daily life in the DeForce (not their real last name, obviously..or maybe not obviously) household with her husband Mike, and all of their fur babies (3 dogs and 2 cats), and talks to her subscribers like we are all her friends.
Personally, even as an almost 29 year old woman, I look up to Fleur. She has such grace, style, beauty (both natural and when she’s all glammed up), along with making her passion for the beauty industry her (incredibly successful) career accidentally (thanks to YouTube), and she has a great marriage to a man that supports her crazy YouTube related endeavors, and she’s the mom to adorable fur-babies. As a relatively newly married woman (1.5 years) longing for a fur-baby of my own, with a blog and channel that I’d love to make a for real career, I admire Fluer and her success greatly.
Okay, enough about that. Let’s talk about meeting Fleur and Mike.
As I mentioned, Fleur wrote a book: The Glam Guide. While it released a few months back in the UK, it was just released this month in the US. She’s currently in the middle of her US book tour, and Chicagoland was her first stop. Since it turned out that her book signing was at Old Orchard Mall in Skokie, rather than downtown, I really didn’t have an excuse to not go. I wasn’t doing anything Monday night, and meeting Fleur would be kind of cool, so why not?
The signing started at 7pm, but to make sure I didn’t end up way at the end of the line, I got to the mall around 4pm and headed to Barnes & Noble to get my copy of the book. When I bought the book, they gave me a numbered ticket for the event so I wouldn’t have to spend the next 3 hours standing around in a line. Epic win! So with ticket #32 in hand, I wandered the mall. I “played” in Sephora, used up some Angel Rewards at Victoria’s Secret, and even took advantage of the Columbus Day sale at Godiva (more on why I did that in a different post later). Finally, around 6:15 I headed back to the book store to get in line.
This particular Barnes and Noble is 2 floors, so they had us line up on the upper level and the signing was below. I started chatting with the girls in line next to me. They were freshman in college, so 18 or so. A few people ahead of me was a really excited woman who was probably close to age 60. There was a very wide range of ages there to see Fleur, I’d guess starting around age 17. I’m really curious as to what her channel’s demographic actually is.
When she walked in, she headed straight downstairs. Finally they started to bring us down around 35 people at a time. While we waited in line, Mike actually was wandering around, talking to us and taking selfies with fans. He actually ended up with his own line of people after they saw Fleur. Fleur’s rep was handing out goodies. Everyone (or at least those of us closer to the beginning of the line) got to pick a piece of makeup out of Fleur’s new makeup collection. What a cool gift! I picked the lip gloss in the same shade as the one she mentioned in her September Favorites video; a pretty everyday pink called “Written in the Stars.”
As I waited in line I observed how she was acting. You always hear stories about how meeting idols/celebrities can often be a let down, because they are nothing like what we thought they’d be in real life. In the case of Fleur and Mike, this is most certainly NOT true. I watched as Fleur took the time to have a legitimate conversation with every single individual in front of me. It made the line move slowly, but I didn’t care. I thought it was amazing that she took that kind of time with each fan.
When I walked up to her, I gave her a hug and promptly said “This is kind of weird, because it feels like we’re friends.” She laughed and said it’s totally normal and that she often feels the same way the first time she meets another YouTuber she happens to watch. It must be a bit strange for her, knowing that most of these people know pretty much everything about her, but the only reason she knows our names is because of the sticky note the staff put in each of our books so she could personalize them for us.
I also mentioned to her that it seems her husband has acquired his very own circle of fan girls. She was quite entertained by this. After a few more pleasantries I told her I hoped she was enjoying her time in Chicago and that she needed to try Lou Malnati’s pizza. We took a photo, I hugged her again, and went to join the line of girls by Mike with a smile on my face. She really is as sweet and genuine as she comes across in her videos. I was thrilled.
I waited for a few people in front of me to get through talking to Mike, then it was my turn. He and I chatted for a few minutes, as he didn’t seem worried about hurrying through our conversation simply because there were people waiting behind me. I told him that I’ve used him as an example of “husbands willing to be in vlogs for their YouTuber wives” when my Mister insists he stay off the camera. Mike said in the early years he can be seen not wanting to be in the videos either, but he eventually got bullied into it. I also asked him about their sick dog, Treacle, who got very ill right before they had to leave for the tour. She’s doing much better now. It’s clear they love their dogs so much. He was happy to chat about them for a few minutes. After I got him to sign the book and take a photo with me, I went on my merry way, ready to go home.
When Mister called me later that night, I told him all about it, and he said he could hear how happy I was. I can honestly say it wasn’t a “star struck” happy, but it was the joy and contentment knowing that, while some celebrities and personalities might just be acts for the public, two people that I enjoy watching and supporting are genuine, kind, and plain old awesome. It gave me hope that you can be a “real” person and find success in the YouTube and blog world.
Going to Fleur’s book signing was a little thing, but it was a great time. I now have a new lip gloss, a signed copy of her book, and the satisfaction of having met one of my favorite YouTubers.
Here are the dates for the rest of Fleur’s book signing tour. You can also check out her daily vlogs to get an inside look as the tour is happening.
Have you had a chance to meet a YouTuber or someone you regarded as having celebrity status? What was your experience?