“Unfiltered” is a seven-video series from The Lily and The Washington Post that asks YouTubers to share a story their followers haven’t heard before – about grappling with online harassment, exploring their sexuality and facing the unknown. The series is an opportunity for The Post and The Lily to reach new audiences across our distributed platforms and expose our brands to the more than three million subscribers who follow these influential women. The series is a 2018 Webby Honoree and received honors from the Society of Publication Design.
Beauty vlogger Shalom Blac on never being in a relationship
Shalom Blac is a fashion and beauty vlogger, and her makeup transformation tutorials on YouTube are as inspiring as they are fabulous. Blac is a burn survivor, and admits to struggling with self-love in the past. Watch her talk about her struggles with being in a relationship and learning to embrace vulnerability.
How feminist blogger Anita Sarkeesian fights trolls
Anita Sarkeesian is a feminist media critic and blogger who was at the center of the Gamergate controversy after speaking out about sexist depictions of women in video games. Over five years after the online firestorm, she’s tired of talking about it. Watch her story about her experience with online harassment and what she wishes women could be known for.
Kat Lazo on the incredible backlash to “Latinx”
Back when she was an aspiring young actor, video producer and vlogger Kat Lazo faced an industry that wanted her to look and sound a certain way. Instead of conforming to racial stereotypes, she decided to launch a YouTube channel to debunk misconceptions about Latino identity and culture. Watch her tell as tory about staying true to her mission despite online backlash.
Molly Burke on what it's like to go blind
YouTuber and motivational speaker Molly Burke lost her vision at a young age after being diagnosed with a rare genetic eye disease—retinitis pigmentosa. Her blindness became a catalyst for creatively connecting with others online. Through her YouTube channel, she encourages viewers to see the "bright spots" of life. Watch her tell a story about overcoming loneliness through her first guide dog, Gypsy (and meet her new guide dog, Gallop).
Sex expert Tyomi Morgan on finding your inner vixen
Tyomi Morgan is a self-proclaimed sex expert, but she hasn’t always felt sexy. When she was younger, she often felt self-conscious about her appearance. Now, she has a YouTube channel that encourages viewers to explore their sexuality and to define what sexiness means for them. Watch her tell a story about how a photoshoot allowed her to tap into a new side of herself.
Science journalist Anna Rothschild on fighting family pressure
Anna Rothschild knew she wanted to be a scientist at an early age, but her family of artists didn't always understand why. They didn’t get her fascination with obscure and gross science—but then she launched her YouTube show, “Gross Science”, as a part of PBS Digital Studios. Watch her tell a story about how she got her start as a science journalist despite not knowing how to make videos.
Artist Ahsante Bean on figuring out her asexuality
Ahsante Bean feels a lot of pressure to create on the Internet, but she struggles to balance posting consistently with having a full-time job. For Bean, YouTube is a space to share her art and connect with people who also identify as asexual. Watch her tell a story about learning to be vulnerable so that others could do the same.