Drebae Masters The Art of Social Media

Evelyn Atieno

It’s very rare that you meet genuine and positive people in this world, Deandre Clark (popularly known as Drebae) is one of them. Dre is an unapologetic queer and black makeup artist who is never afraid to tell his 79,000+ followers his views about the world. He is known for his witty tweets and hilarious stories. Though the fame has bought him notoriety, he is still just trying to figure out where he fits in this chaotic world.

Did you expect to gain such a big following on social media?

I didn’t expect it at all, when I started I was just being myself. Random stuff I said would blow up. I was like okay they like the ‘gworl’. I didn’t expect it in the beginning.

When I joined Twitter, I got 400 followers in two weeks. At the time, Natalie Nunn retweeted one of my views and I got over 2k retweets. Back in the day people didn’t know who I was but  I was actively getting upwards of 10,000 followers. I started having things like discussions with Drebae. I feel like my followers grew because I was so interactive. If people talk badly about me, my followers will defend me. I think my interacts with them make them understand  me more.

My followers make me and help me in ways that I could never repay them for.

Their opinions are always like mine even when we don’t always agree.

Do you find that you have to censor yourself a lot?

I definitely have to be aware of what I say.  When you have a big platform you have to be really careful of what you say. For me I speak on how I feel, even if people disagree.

Since I have such a large platform, I like to speak on LGBTQ+ rights and depression.

A lot of people don’t want to hear about those things since they’re both heavy topics. Interacting with my followers is important to me.  I am a down to earth daddy.

How was it growing up not only gay but black?

When I came out in high school, I faced a lot of homophobia. It was already racist so being gay and black, I faced even more blacklash. In 2012, I used to get trolled on Twitter a lot and people would make little jabs.

People in high school would even try to fight me for being gay. 

When you’re young , you don’t know what gay is. I was really angry and confused, I didn’t have support. I try to make people who are like me feel supported because when I was young I didn’t have anyone to support me. I allow my followers to send me messages anytime they need guidance or advice. I make time even when I am working all day.

Growing up it took me a while to accept myself. Growing up and being gay wearing make- up, I never had idols because nobody was like me on TV. I just realized a week ago, I like Nicki Minaj, she faces so much hate in the industry and so much negativity from people trying to bring her down, despite this she still succeeds. I know I will face a lot of hate as a gay boy who wears makeup when I try to break into the entertainment industry.

On Twitter people started to accept me, so I decided to accept myself.

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You’re so visible on Twitter, how do you face the hate that you get?

At first I used to let the hate get to me, I started to search my name and I was confused on why people would hate me for no reason. I started to analyze why people hated me, and realized people hated me solely because I have a big platform. I realized this after people would retweet accounts that would steal my tweets, it seemed they liked what I was saying, but not me . It’s all just envy. One girl even copied my makeup after saying she didn’t like me. They don’t want to see someone else be successful.

With such a huge platform, are you working on anything?

I’m working on music and I sent it to people like Rico Nasty, Fucci and more (he even got a nod of approval from Nicki Minaj) they all loved it.  With my music I had no idea it involved so much preparation, I thought girl imma just go to the studio and record. Some of my followers are helping me out with getting my music cleared and on Apple Music.

I’m working on my own cosmetics line. 2018 is my year.

Right now I am working a lot to secure money to pay for my makeup brand, I want to save a couple thousand dollars. I would love to be full time doing my Youtube and all but I don’t have the time right now, my main focus is launching my cosmetic line. I worked with other companies at first, but I want to create something that’s my own. I have gotten a lot of support from make-up people like Bretman Rock. He thought I was so funny and told me to never let the industry change me.

I want my product reveal to be pigmented, very nice and affordable. I am not trying to go to these low budget factories that creates makeup that gives you infections.

I made my own highlight once and it came out really nice.  It took a very long, I had to wait for it overnight but it was so shiny and beautiful.

You seem so humble and down to earth, how do you stay so grounded?

You’re still the same person, people just support you more. It’s not like you’re a celebrity. I have always been humble, nice and polite. I haven’t changed, I remain the same person regardless.  I feel like I am a very genuine person. But some people aren’t always genuine, there’s beauty industry people who sometimes want to take advantage.

I’m lucky that I am surrounded by people who encourage and support me. There’s never any hatred, people around me have always been supportive. They always wanted to see me be famous.

Do you feel like boys are welcomed in the makeup world?

I don’t think the makeup world embraces boys that wear makeup, they’re like why are you here? this is for the girls. I don’t feel we are welcomed, I feel like they wanna put us in a box.

They feel like guys that have a beard with a full beat can’t exist and men of color get overlooked. I like Anastasia Beverly Hills because they posted me once. I really want to work with Fenty Beauty because they’re really inclusive. I really love Rihanna and her work ethic. She serves looks.