Do you cringe when you see a picture of yourself? Is it even worse when you watch a video of yourself moving and talking? Don’t worry; you’re not alone. Psychology Today says that you could be suffering from something called self enhancement bias.
A self enhancement bias means that it’s common to think that we are more attractive than we actually are. We’re used to our reflection we see in the mirror. But when we see ourselves on camera, our face isn’t mirrored – we get to see our actual face as others see it.
It’s the unmirrored image that makes us cringe.
This can be a problem for aspiring YouTubers. There is a bunch of money to be made on the platform. And you want in on the action too.
Well, there is a way for you, if you suffer from self-enhancement bias, to make a bundle of money from YouTube without showing your face on video. There are a whole host of channels with thousands of subscribers where the channel owner never appears on camera.
Here are 13 video ideas for YouTube you can steal, or use for inspiration, and launch your own YouTube channel without ever showing your face.
One of the first ways you could choose to film your YouTube videos is using a top-down camera shot that only shows your hands. The top-down camera shot is suitable for a wide variety of niches. Here are a few of them.
Crafts are a popular niche on YouTube, with lots of people looking for hints, tips, and tutorials on how to express their creativity.
PPO – Proud Paper Official – is a crafts channel that shows the viewers how to fold origami shapes and planes from paper.
Social Blade (a social media statistics aggregator) says that they have nearly 5 million monthly viewers and earn as much as £12.9k per month from the videos.
Not bad for a channel that is seven years old but only has 77 videos uploaded.
Fingernail art is not a recent invention. The history of nail polish goes back over 5000 years, originating in ancient China. Today, nail art remains popular as ever.
The millions of potential combinations of colours and patterns mean there are always new nail designs you can demonstrate.
A nail art channel is ideal for top-down filming and only needs to show you applying the designs, plus a commentary explaining how to do it.
20 Nails is a channel that shows its viewers how to create all manner of nail art designs, from the simple to extravagant.
With 59 videos uploaded in just under a year, 20 Nails has built an audience of 288k subscribers. Social Blade says that they get 2.33 million views per month and earn as much as £6.1k monthly from the channel.
Lots of people like to draw. Stephen Wiltshire, an autistic savant, can draw an entire cityscape from memory, and others struggle to make a stick figure look human.
Drawing is a skill, though, and can be learned with patience and practice. There are lots of people teaching the craft of drawing on YouTube using only the top-down camera shot.
Dan Beardshaw is one of those. Dan uploads short videos every couple of weeks demonstrating hints and tips on how to improve the different elements of drawing.
He has uploaded 167 videos over four years and has grown the channel to 361k subscribers. Social Blade says he has about half a million views per month and earns as much as £1.3k per month from advertising.
Dan also supplements this income with nearly 400 Patreon members and affiliate links to art materials in his video descriptions, so is likely earning a full-time income from the channel.
Cooking is an awesome niche for using the top-down filming angle. And while numerous channels focus on top-down cooking videos, there is also never-ending demand.
We all like to eat tasty food, and many want to try new recipes or improve their cooking skills.
You may need to find a unique angle to stand out in the niche. But if you can find a way to make your videos compelling, there is no reason you can’t make a successful cooking channel.
You Suck At Cooking has 117 videos that doesn’t do anything revolutionary with the cooking recipes but inject a large dose of humour instead.
The production quality is good, and the videos are well-scripted, but nothing that you couldn’t produce yourself with a bit of thought and planning.
Social Blade says that the 5 million views per month the channel’s 117 videos receive, earn £13.4k per month in advertising revenue.
The channel also earns money from sales of a cookbook and associated merchandise.
If you’re handy about the home, then one idea you could choose for top-down filming is DIY videos. YouTube is often the first place people go to when they have a DIY problem and need a quick solution.
It could be a simple as wiring a plug, or more complicated like changing a tap. Whatever the problem, your videos could help people save money by preventing the need to hire in a handyperson.
There is an endless amount of small jobs you can make videos about. Plus you could approach the niche with a different frame of reference. For example, how about DIY videos for people who don’t have a box of tools?
Ultimate Handyman is a DIY channel that has over 800 videos covering all manner of DIY tasks from big to small. While he does have his face in the video thumbnails, most of his content is simply the camera filming his hands.
Social Blade puts Ultimate Handyman on 1.7 million monthly views and earning as much as £4.5k from advertising revenue in the same period.
Everyone likes a good unboxing video. The idea is a simple one; buy a new product, wait for delivery, then film yourself taking it out of the packaging.
You get bonus points (and more views and subscribers) if you can make the process compelling. It helps if you can show some expertise with your commentary. Rather than merely stating what something is, as you pull it out of the box.
The Relaxing End is one of the more successful unboxing channels. Part of their continued success is that they can afford to buy in (or have a big-enough audience to get sent for free) some of the latest high-end products that people dream about owning.
Apart from the high-end products, the channel’s unique attraction is their use of sound. The host appears too shy to speak as well as not showing his face. Instead, he makes the most of every slash of sellotape or squeak of polystyrene, as he unboxes the item.
The un-boxer also wears signature white gloves to add extra frills.
The Social Blade stats on this channel are impressive. With monthly channel views over 30 million, The Relaxing End pulls in as much as £78.8k per month in ad revenue.
TIP: Technology channels are some of the best earners on YouTube. The ad space is more expensive for advertisers to buy because of high competition for the slots.
If you want to get started on your own top-down videos, you need to make sure that you have some sort of rig to keep your phone and camera steady while filming. Check out Javier Mercedes’ video for how to film overhead shots.
A slight twist on the top-down video is having the camera facing you, but not showing your face in the shot. I’m calling these types of videos chest-down ideas. Let’s take a look at a couple of examples.
There are a significant number of cooking channels already doing top-down videos. To make your cooking channel stand out from the pack, why not try a different angle?
That’s what Binging with Babish chooses to do for his channel. The camera angle gives the impression you are sat in the kitchen with him, making the effect more homely. Yet you don’t see his face in the cooking videos.
Babish also has a theme for his cooking channel apart from the unusual camera angle; he recreates food found in TV and Movies. If you fancy some Pollos Hermanos from Breaking Bad or some Twin Peaks pancakes, head over to the channel for some mouth-watering videos.
As you can imagine the 7.82 million subscribers of the channel help Babish earn quite a bit ad revenue. Social Blade reckons the channel gets 58.63 million views and makes a tasty £152K, every month.
A different spin on the DIY channel is short-and-sweet tips to help with day-to-day household chores. ‘Hacks’ has become the byword for ingenious tips that help people accomplish usually tiresome tasks.
Many of us often turn to YouTube, looking for a quick way to solve a problem. Get rid of Ants or spend less on groceries. Hacks help us improve our lives, so it’s not a niche that will disappear anytime soon.
Household Hacker makes short videos to demonstrate various hacks for the home, often making use of the chest-down camera shot.
Household Hacker has also branched out to demonstrating those silly products-you-never-knew-you-needed from the TV shopping channels.
Social Blade puts Household Hacker on 1.2 million views per month, which it says brings in the channel owner as much as £3.3k in advertising revenue. The channel also earns income from affiliate earnings for the TV products he reviews.
So far, we have looked at top-down and chest-down filming without showing your face. But there is another angle you can use in your videos too. The POV – Point of View – camera shot.
This camera angle shows the audience the view from your eyes and guarantees keeping your face out of the frame.
Here are some ideas you can try for POV YouTube video ideas.
Do you have your own workshop? Handy with a belt-sander and happy to mix up some caustic chemicals? You could launch a channel to show you restoring old rusty tools and other whatnots to their original state.
It can be therapeutic for viewers to watch someone restore an item; I firmly believe that these types of videos are beneficial to people’s mental health too.
It’s a content type which is very popular on YouTube.
Awesome Restorations has 2.57 million subscribers and is one of the better channels in the restoration niche. Restoring an item can take some time, so if you choose the restoration niche, you might only be uploading a video every couple of weeks.
Awesome Restorations has built up their massive following in just over a year, and with only 38 videos.
Their work has paid off too. Social Blade puts them on 14.5 million monthly views and ad revenue earnings of £37.8k per month.
If you don’t want to go down the tool restoration route, there are plenty of other objects you can restore: vintage handbags, antique books, even early smartphones. Restoration is a hot niche and perfect for POV filming because the object of restoration, not you, is the star.
Stop motion animation is nearly as old as the invention of film itself—the earliest movie dated back to 1898 and was based on Humpty Dumpty. Stop motion is an animation technique where figures are animated by snapping a single frame, then moving the model ever so slightly and shooting the next frame.
As an animation medium, Stop Motion is still hugely popular today. The most well-known is the Wallace and Gromit series of films, which earned three Oscars in the 1990s and 2000s.
Michael Hickox Films is a stop motion animation YouTube channel that uses Lego for its animated characters.
The animated films are short, wholesome pieces that appeal to a broad audience – and it’s a large audience too.
With 1.47 million subscribers, Michael Hickox films have 3.86 million monthly views and earn as much as £10.1k per month.
Thanks to GoPro cameras and associated body mounts, the popularity of filming outdoor activities is on the rise.
At one time, the only way you could understand what it was like to jump out of a plane or surf a twenty-foot wave, was to do it yourself. Now lots of activities are available for a broader audience to experience by viewing a POV video.
There are endless types of outdoor activities you can launch a YouTube channel about with a GoPro camera, chest rig, and perhaps a friend or two.
Ampisound is a channel that makes Parkour videos. Many of the Parkour runs are shot POV-style, placing the viewer at the heart of the action.
Ampisound only releases videos about every month or so, but the content resonates and has built an audience of 2.32 million subscribers.
What kind of YouTube channel could you launch using a GoPro camera filming from your point-of-view?
Maybe you could grow it as large as Ampisound and get nearly 7 million monthly views and pull in as much as £18k in ad revenue.
There is nothing like hitting the open road, dropping the convertible roof, and admiring the scenery of the world’s best cities.
But not everyone can drive. And most people don’t live anywhere near the world’s nicest cities.
So, if you are one of the fortunate ones who does, then how about making videos of scenic drives and tours of famous locations?
J Utah is a channel that specialises in only POV videos of picturesque drives. From L.A. to Boston (and a few overseas), J Utah likes nothing more than mounting a 4K camera on the car and driving about.
You really wouldn’t think this idea would work – it’s just driving around for goodness sake! But it works. Perhaps people enjoy the content because it’s a familiar place to them, or maybe they want to live there one day.
Whatever the reason, the channel has built up 366K subscribers and has 5.4 million monthly views. Social Blade put the ad revenue for the channel as much as £14k per month.
Hairdressing is perfect for a POV video channel, and Health and Beauty is one of the top niches on YouTube.
Now, some of the highest earners are in the makeup category, which by definition is a showing-your-face kind of gig. But there is an alternative for the shy. You can create videos that demonstrate hairstyling using a POV camera shot.
You will need a model to work on who won’t mind appearing on camera. But as you are showing mainly the back and side of the head, they won’t have too much face-time on camera.
There are hundreds of channels I could use as an example for this particular idea, so if you choose this niche, be prepared for stiff competition.
Making a big success of your channel would probably mean that you have found an angle that makes you stand out from all the rest. Perhaps you can be first with new, unusual hairstyles, or dazzle viewers with your humorous delivery.
Nina Starck makes videos about hair braiding. She is so good at braiding that she uses herself as a model, but never shows her face on the videos.
With only 38 videos, Nina has built a subscriber base of 149k people. She gets 650k views per month and earns as much as $1.7k in ad revenue for those viewers.
YouTube is an education and entertainment platform, and you don’t need to be a polished presenter to make some great money on the platform. If you can present content in a compelling, engaging way, it doesn’t matter if you show your face or not.
Most of the ideas mentioned above cover day to day human life; cooking, home hacks, shopping, beauty, sports, and hobbies. And can be filmed in a manner that doesn’t require you to show your face.
The star of the videos is whatever the camera is pointing at – that’s what the viewers will be interested in.
So don’t let your dislike of showing your face on camera prevent a channel you launch from becoming one of the next stars on YouTube.
If you need more ideas for your faceless youtube channel check out my blog where 1 give you 12 more youtube channel ideas you can do without showing your face!