Browse all articles

10 YouTube Channels for Girls (Completely Makeup- and Fashion-Free!)

Gaming tutorials, crafting tips, computer programming lessons, and more inspire girls to think, do, and follow their dreams.

If your daughter comes home from school, throws down her backpack, and hops on YouTube -- she's just like millions of other kids. Girls are flocking to the video-sharing site to watch, share, and comment on everything from toy reviews to cheerleading tips to music videos.

Until YouTube's app for kids catches on, the original YouTube is still a major destination. And age-inappropriate stuff is only one of the pitfalls. The glut of content about makeup, fashion, hair, and shopping just reinforces the idea that girls only care about -- or should care about -- physical appearance.

So, let's rewind that afterschool scenario. Your daughter comes home, throws down her backpack, and takes in some of the best girl-oriented videos on YouTube. What makes great viewing for girls? New ideas about what they can be, female role models who could give a hoot about how they look, and inspiration to replace the outdated stereotype-reinforcing messages that media is still sending.

Of course, girls don't have to stick to "girl" videos, and boys can certainly enjoy these, too. But if you're looking for high-quality content to enrich your daughter's viewing pleasure, these are terrific choices. (Preview or watch videos along with your kid while you're familiarizing yourself with a channel.)

MyFroggyStuff. This doll-crafting site features a multicultural array of dolls, imaginative DIY tips, and product reviews with an emphasis on self-expression, creativity, and inexpensive materials. Best for: younger kids.

​Rosanna Pansino. Known for her Nerdy Nummies (silly food concoctions like Angry Bird cupcakes), Rosanna Pansino offers lively video challenges, simple crafts, and baking ideas inspired by sci-fi, comic books, and other geeky interests. Best for: younger kids and tweens.

​Melonie Mac. With her bright pink headphones and straightforward delivery, Melonie Mac offers product reviews, Lego-building, gaming tutorials, and vlogs geared for techie girls. Best for: tweens and teens.

The Brain Scoop. Hosted by the knowledgeable and quirky Chief Curiosity Correspondent Emily Graslie, this Chicago Field Museum channel explores natural history, explains scientific concepts, and promotes STEM for girls. Best for: older kids and tweens.

​AwesomenessTV's Terry the Tomboy. Played by YouTuber Lia Marie Johnson (from Kids' React) Terry the Tomboy is a sitcom-type series on the tween-and-teen-targeted channel AwesomenessTV. Terry the Tomboy celebrates the joys of not being a girlie-girl. Best for: older kids and tweens.

Just Like That. This group of six YouTubers presents an eclectic range of topics from playing hide-and-seek in IKEA to sharing embarrassing moments to waxing philosophical about music. Their easy camaraderie, unpolished presentation, and unusual subject selection that explicitly forbids the discussion of beauty is a great model for female friendships, self-determination, and just-plain-wackiness. Best for: tweens and teens.

Smart Girls. The brainchild of actress Amy Poehler, Smart Girls affirms girls' value to society with insightful Q&As, around-the-world tours of girls' lives, and interviews with female celebrities. Best for: older tweens and teens.

Geek Gurl Diaries. With her motto, "Girls can be geeks, too!" the British host of this how-to channel teaches girls skills like soldering, computer programming, and game design.
Best for: older kids, tweens, and teens.

Chescaleigh. Comedian Franchesca's vlogs cover social commentary, humorous rants, song parodies, and other entertaining, thought-provoking fare. Best for: mature teens.

MTV Braless. Hosted by YouTuber and "sexpert" Laci Green, this MTV-backed series tackles weighty topics from politics and feminism to paparazzi and sexting. The discussions are sometimes bold and edgy, but the goal is to help viewers view media and culture more critically. Best for: mature teens.

Caroline Knorr
Caroline is Common Sense Media's former parenting editor. She has many years of editorial and creative marketing writing experience and has held senior-level positions at Walmart.com, Walmart stores, Cnet, and Bay Area Parent magazine. She specializes in translating complex information into bite-sized chunks to help families make informed choices about what their kids watch, play, read, and do.