beauty

Hold up. A series of screenshots from the James Charles/Tati Westbrook saga have emerged.

Does anybody remember what life was like before an internet brawl between two beauty influencers over vitamins became all the world talked about?

Up until a few days ago, we didn’t even know what a “James Charles” or a “Tati Westbrook” was and we like to think our lives were fine. Now, we know the minute intricacies of their friendship and while we did not ask for this, We. Are. Invested.

A pre-feud Tati and James. Image: YouTube.

Here's the lowdown: James and Tati are beauty bloggers who were once great friends, until James endorsed a sleep vitamins company that was in direct competition with Tati's vitamins brand. James claimed he only posted the endorsement because the company saved him from a terrifying gang of flower-crowned 20-somethings at Coachella by handing him a backstage pass to safety.

Tati, 37, then posted a video "cancelling" their friendship, claiming James was flat-out lying, that she was sick of justifying his actions, and accusing the 19-year-old of predatory behaviour towards straight men. James apologised, but the pile on had already begun, with many celebrities, including Kylie Jenner, weighing in by unfollowing James. He's now lost upwards of three million followers (and counting) across his social media platforms.

But hold the phone. A mystery witness has just entered the courtroom, and she has receipts.

Enter: Nikita Dragun and her screenshots.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

We literally look like twins @nikita_dragun ???? who saw today’s new video where we FaceTuned this exact photo!? ????

A post shared by James Charles (@jamescharles) on

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The latest in the ~saga~ is a series of screenshots from a friend of James' which seemingly support his claim that he did not go out of his way to endorse Tati's rival company. No, he only agreed to post the paid sponsorship after SugarBearHair saved him from drowning in a sea of sweaty, glittery bodies at the music festival.

Behold:

In one of the screenshots, James asked his pal if she could text someone from SugarBearHair for emergency artist passes because the VIP area at Coachella WAS NOT SAFE.

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The next shows a group conversation in which Nikita passes on James' number so they can get the pass to him.

BUT WAIT.

Gossip site Tea Spill then posted a DIFFERENT screenshot from James himself, in which he says that SugarBearHair reached out to HIM to offer the pass after hearing he was in ~grave danger~.

They followed it up with a text thread where James explains he asked to endorse their product in exchange for the pass.

WE DON'T KNOW WHAT TO BELIEVE OR WHY WE CARE OR WHY WE ARE YELLING.

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Members of the jury (ahem, the internet) were also quick to point out that the time stamps on Nikita's texts didn't quite add up.

Why?

Well.

In the offending Instagram post that triggered Tati's friendship cancellation, James apparently said that he'd received security help from SugarBearHair during weekend one of Coachella (April 12-14), which many people assumed meant James was given the artist passes then. But, Nikita's texts were dated the following weekend.

They also show the company's PR reps were suspiciously quick to respond.

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Phew, we need a lie down.

This feud has more layers than Inception and it's making our brains hurt.

At least we'll have plenty to tell the grankids when they ask about the great influencer war of 2019.

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