Tyler Oakley

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Tyler Oakley
Oakley at VidCon 2014
Personal information
Mathew Tyler Oakley

(1989-03-22) March 22, 1989 (age 34)
EducationMichigan State University (BA)
YouTube information
Years active2007–present
Subscribers6.82 million[1]
Total views682 million[1]
100,000 subscribers2011
1,000,000 subscribers2013

Last updated: May 1, 2023

Mathew Tyler Oakley (born March 22, 1989) is an American YouTuber, actor, activist, author, television personality and Twitch streamer. Much of Oakley's activism has been dedicated to LGBT youth, LGBT rights, as well as social issues including health care, education, and the prevention of suicide among LGBT youth.[2][3] Oakley regularly posts material on various topics, including pop culture and humor.[4][5][6]

Since uploading his first video in 2007[7] while a freshman at Michigan State University, his YouTube channel[8] has garnered over 683 million views, and, at its peak, had over 8 million subscribers.[9] He was featured in the 2014 Frontline investigative report "Generation Like", a follow-up on how teenagers are "directly interacting with pop culture" to the 2001 report, "The Merchants of Cool".[10][11] SocialBlade, a website that rates YouTube and Instagram accounts, ranks his YouTube channel, As of February 1, 2021, with a grade "B", subscriber rank of 1,434th, video view rank at 7,022nd, and a SocialBlade rating of 345,254th.[8] As of February 1, 2021 he also had more than 5.6 million followers on Twitter and 5.6 million on Instagram.[12][13]

From March to October 2013, Oakley co-hosted a weekly pop-culture news update – "Top That!" – with Becca Frucht for PopSugar.[14] From 2013 to 2014, he performed the voice of Mr. McNeely in five episodes of the comedy web series The Most Popular Girls in School.[15] He has hundreds of thousands of followers on Facebook and Tumblr.[16][11][17][18] In 2015, he released his first collection of humorous personal essays under the title Binge, via publishers Simon & Schuster.[19]

Oakley was the host of The Tyler Oakley Show, which aired weekly on Ellen DeGeneres' ellentube platform.[20][21] In 2017, he was named in Forbes "30 Under 30".[22]

Early life[edit]

Mathew Tyler Oakley[23] was born on March 22, 1989, in Jackson, Michigan. He has twelve siblings. When he was an infant, his parents divorced.[24] When he was in the sixth grade, Oakley moved to Okemos, and became involved in choir and drama. As a teenager, he had bulimia nervosa.[25] Oakley came out as gay in high school.[26]

Oakley graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in communication, marketing and social media from Michigan State University. While in college, he fell into a short depression after a breakup with a long-term boyfriend. Oakley admits he considered suicide at this time.[25] His college years were also when he first became involved with YouTube, using the video sharing website to communicate with his high school friends, who were attending different schools.[27]


Social media[edit]

Oakley appearing in a Vlogbrothers video in 2016

Oakley is an active user of many social media platforms.[2] A self-proclaimed "professional fangirl", he is a fan of Darren Criss from Glee,[5] along with Julie Chen of CBS's daytime talk show The Talk. He also sang Christmas carols on stage with English-Irish boy band One Direction and television presenter Jerry Springer.[28]

Oakley is known for receiving attention from major celebrities and organizations, such as Liam Payne from One Direction, Chris Colfer from the television series Glee and the restaurant chain store Taco Bell, namely on the social network Twitter after commenting on a previous tweet of theirs or tweeting about them. Due to Oakley's success with social media and prominence among many social media platforms (particularly YouTube), he was given the opportunity to meet U.S. President Barack Obama at the White House.[29] He did a video with First Lady Michelle Obama talking about education issues.[30]

Oakley attributes his success only in part to his accessibility as a young gay man. "It's not all about me being gay. It's kind of like an underlying theme for me [with gay life] sprinkled throughout the videos."[2] He sees Ellen DeGeneres as a role model: "She embodies what I want my experience to be and my influence to be, where it's a positive one, it's a happy one, it's not something about the bad parts of life or the downsides of a lot of things. She's using her influence for good, and everyone knows who she is, what she stands for, and that she is a lesbian."[2]

The Advocate in their 2014 "40 under 40: Emerging voices" says that, due to Oakley's presence on YouTube, he is the first openly gay person that many people have met.[2] Oakley is considered one of the world's leading Celebrity influencers, having an Influencer Score of 99 from the influencer marketing software Klear.

In December 2020, Oakley announced he was taking an indefinite hiatus from making Youtube videos.[31] He is currently actively streaming on Twitch, and sporadically uploads on YouTube.


Oakley appeared on the YouTube Premium show Escape the Night, appearing as "The Thespian" for 10 episodes in Season 2.

Live appearances[edit]

In 2014, Oakley premiered a live show tour, "Tyler Oakley's Slumber Party", featuring him in pyjamas and doing skits, and interactive segments with the audience. His two initial shows in Chicago and in Royal Oak, Michigan in early October both sold out in 72 hours. In December 2014, seven dates, all on the East Coast, made up the next leg of the tour, which was expected to eventually go to 40 cities. Variety noted that the trend of "digital-native stars hitting the road for 'in-real-life' shows" had been increasing. Oakley had been a part of DigiTour's 2014 US Summer tour of YouTube and Vine personalities.[32]


Oakley has a podcast called Psychobabble with his best friend, Korey Kuhl. It launched in 2014 and as of 2022 has had over 400 episodes.


On screen, Oakley has done appearances on broadcasting platforms, with some airing on national TV. He was seen on Insider Tonight, featuring co-hosts Kevin Frazier and Thea Andrews. He has interviewed live from the 2014 Kids Choice Awards red carpet, along with many other events that have him meeting and speaking to celebrities.[33]

Oakley, alongside best friend Korey Kuhl, competed in the 28th season of The Amazing Race, which aired in 2016.[34] They finished in 3rd place.[35] The two also participated in the 31st season of the show, which began airing on April 17, 2019.[36] They finished in 2nd place.

In 2018, Oakley also appeared on the tenth episode of the tenth season of RuPaul's Drag Race, where he was paired with Monét X Change for a makeover challenge.[37][38][39]

Volunteering and charity[edit]

Oakley supports The Trevor Project, an organization for the prevention of suicide among LGBT youth.[2] He interned with them in 2009, and since 2011 has co-hosted TrevorLIVE, the charity's annual red carpet event. In 2013 he raised $29,000 for his birthday in support of the Trevor Project having aimed to raise $24,000 (because it was his 24th birthday). In 2014, he raised $525,704 in a similar event, and in 2015 he raised $532,224.[40]


  • Binge (2015)

Awards and nominations[edit]

Year Nominated Award Result
2012 Himself The Queerties: YouTube Idol Won
Tyler Oakley Chats with Straight British Twins The Queerties: LOL Of The Year Won
2014 Himself YouTube Star Nominated
Video Blogger Nominated
Blogger Nominated
Activism Nominated
Petty Category Nominated
First Person Nominated
Trevor Youth Innovator Award Won
OUT100 Readers' Choice Won
Young Hollywood Awards: Viral Superstar Nominated
Teen Choice Award for Choice Web Star: Male Won
"The Boyfriend Tag" with Troye Sivan Teen Choice Award for Choice Web Collaboration Won
Himself 2014 Streamy Entertainer of the Year[41] Won
2014 Streamy Activist Icon of the Year Won
First Person[42] Nominated
The Queerties: Twitter Account You Should Be Following Nominated
2015 Psychobabble with Tyler Oakley & Korey Kuhl 10th Annual Podcast Awards: Best LGBTQ+ Podcast Won
Himself First Person[43] Nominated
Podcast[44] Nominated
TIME Magazine's The 30 Most Influential People on the Internet[45] Won
GLAAD Davidson/Valentini Award[46] Won
The Hollywood Reporter's Top 25 Digital Stars[47] Won
Entertainer of the Year[48] Nominated
MTV Fandom Awards: Social Superstar of the Year Nominated
Teen Choice Award for Choice Web Star: Male Nominated
Teen Choice Award for Choice YouTuber Nominated
Streamy Awards: First Person Series Nominated
Streamy Awards: Social Good Campaign Nominated
2016 Web Personality Nominated
Best Web Personality/Host Won
YouTuber of the Year[49] Nominated
OUT Magazine's Power 50 Won
Teen Choice Award 2016 for Choice Web Star: Male Nominated
The Hollywood Reporter's Top 25 Digital Stars[50] Won
Variety Famechangers[51] Won
2017 People's Choice Awards for Favorite YouTube Star Nominated
Out Web Fest: Vanguard Award Won
2018 Streamy Awards: 2018 Streamy Legacy Award Won
HRC Awards: 2018 Visibility Award Won
Out Power 50 Awards: Power of Originality 2018 Award Won
2018 Teen Choice Awards: Choice Male Web Star Nominated
2021 Psychobabble with Tyler Oakley & Korey Kuhl The Queerties - Best Podcast Nominated
2022 Psychobabble with Tyler Oakley & Korey Kuhl The Queerties - Best Podcast Nominated

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "About TylerOakley". YouTube.
  2. ^ a b c d e f Grindley, Lucas (July 30, 2014). "Tyler Oakley Could Be The First Gay Person You Ever Met". The Advocate. Retrieved December 2, 2014.
  3. ^ Friend, Tad. "Hollywood and Vine: The entertainment industry seeks the future in viral video. "". The New Yorker. Archived from the original on December 13, 2014. Retrieved December 12, 2014.
  4. ^ Espina, Alfonso (December 31, 2012). "Young YouTube Partners: Finding Success as Entrepreneurs and Internet Stars". The Huffington Post.
  5. ^ a b Romano, Aja (February 2, 2013). "Tyler Oakley Is A Bigger Fangirl Than You". The Huffington Post.
  6. ^ "Tyler Oakley tells TCU audience how YouTube brought hate but also inspired him to fight it". Dallas Voice. March 5, 2012. Archived from the original on August 31, 2014. Retrieved May 29, 2013.
  7. ^ "An Interview with Tyler Oakley". coreylambert.com. February 20, 2013. Archived from the original on April 27, 2015. Retrieved August 16, 2015.
  8. ^ a b Urgo, Jason. "YouTube Statistics for Tyleroakley". Socialblade.com. Retrieved August 16, 2015.
  9. ^ "How Studios Are Cashing in on YouTube Stars". The Hollywood Reporter. 18 March 2016.
  10. ^ "Frontline: Generation Like". Kpbs.org. February 17, 2014. Retrieved March 11, 2014.
  11. ^ a b "Meet Tyler Oakley, YouTube's Self-Proclaimed "Peter Pan"". Pbs.org. February 18, 2014. Retrieved March 11, 2014.
  12. ^ "tyler oakley's Twitter Stats Summary Profile (Social Blade Twitter Statistics)". socialblade.com. Retrieved 2021-02-01.
  13. ^ "tyler oakley's Instagram Stats Summary Profile (Social Blade Instagram Statistics)". socialblade.com. Retrieved 2021-02-01.
  14. ^ "Grumpy Cat, Kim Kardashian in Flats, and More — Your Pop Culture Cheat Sheet!". PopSugar. March 29, 2013.
  15. ^ "MPGIS: Episode 31 feat. Tyler Oakley". YouTube. November 5, 2013. Retrieved August 15, 2015.
  16. ^ "Tyler Oakley: About". YouTube. Retrieved January 16, 2018.
  17. ^ "Fame game different in Internet age". DelawareOnline.com. February 17, 2014. Retrieved March 11, 2014.
  18. ^ "Tyler on Twitter". Twitter.com. Retrieved March 11, 2014.
  19. ^ "Tyler Oakley Book Website". Retrieved March 11, 2014.
  20. ^ "YouTube Star Tyler Oakley Launches Talk Show On Ellen DeGeneres' Digital Network". tubefilter. 21 September 2016. Retrieved 9 October 2016.
  21. ^ Petski, Denise (21 September 2016). "'The Tyler Oakley Show' Launches On Ellen DeGeneres' Digital Network". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved 9 October 2016.
  22. ^ Howard, Caroline. "Meet The 2017 Class Of 30 Under 30". Forbes.
  23. ^ Oakley, Tyler (20 October 2015). Binge. Simon + Schuster UK. p. 3. ISBN 978-1-4711-4513-1.
  24. ^ Oakley, Tyler (June 21, 2013). "Draw My Life". YouTube. Retrieved October 25, 2015.
  25. ^ a b Oakley, Tyler (2015). Binge.
  26. ^ "Tyler Oakley on Coming Out to His Conservative Father: 'I'm Really Glad I Was Patient with Him'". Peoplemag. Retrieved 2023-09-03.
  27. ^ Draw My Life | Tyler Oakley, retrieved 2021-08-31
  28. ^ "What Harry Styles Smells Like: One Direction Q&A". YouTube. November 25, 2013. Retrieved March 11, 2014.
  29. ^ Cohen, Joshua (March 2, 2014). "Obama Meets With YouTube Advisors On How To Reach Online Audiences". Tubefilter. Retrieved December 2, 2014.
  30. ^ "First Lady Michelle Obama talks education with Tyler Oakley". Belfast Telegraph. September 15, 2014. Retrieved December 2, 2014.
  31. ^ "Tyler Oakley Announces He's Taking an Indefinite Break from YouTube After 13 Years: 'See Ya Later'". People. December 16, 2020. Retrieved February 9, 2021.
  32. ^ Spangler, Todd (November 4, 2014). "YouTube Star Tyler Oakley Adds 7 Cities to U.S. Tour". Variety. Retrieved November 29, 2014.
  33. ^ Schawbel, Dan. "Tyler Oakley: From YouTube Star To Author And LGBTQ Activist". Forbes. Retrieved 2017-10-06.
  34. ^ Salisbury, Danielle (November 14, 2015). "Jackson natives, YouTube stars Tyler Oakley, Korey Kuhl to appear on 'The Amazing Race'". MLive. Retrieved November 16, 2015.
  35. ^ "Which Team Won Season 28 Of The Amazing Race". CBS. March 16, 2016.
  36. ^ Ross, Dalton (April 5, 2019). "Meet the Amazing Race season 31 reality all-star teams". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved April 5, 2019.
  37. ^ Sava, Oliver (25 May 2018). "Drag Race recruits social media influencers for a middling makeover challenge". The A.V. Club.
  38. ^ Blanton, Kayla (29 May 2018). "These Social Media Stars Got 'RuPaul's Drag Race' Makeovers & They Are SO GOOD". Bustle.
  39. ^ "'RuPaul's Drag Race': Monet X Change Talks the Key to Lip Syncing, Working With Tyler Oakley & More". Billboard.
  40. ^ "Tyler Oakley Launches Prizeo Campaign To Raise $500,000 For The Trevor Project". Tubefilter. 2015-02-11. Retrieved 2017-10-06.
  41. ^ Bloom, David (September 7, 2014). "Streamy Awards Name LGBT Activist Tyler Oakley Entertainer of the Year". Deadline. Retrieved March 5, 2015.
  42. ^ "4th Annual Winners & Nominees". The Streamy Awards. Retrieved September 25, 2016.
  43. ^ "Tyler Oakley". The Webby Awards. Retrieved September 25, 2016.
  44. ^ "Tyler Oakley". The Shorty Awards. Retrieved September 25, 2016.
  45. ^ "These Are The 30 Most Influential People on the Internet". TIME. March 5, 2015. Retrieved September 25, 2016.
  46. ^ Hamedy, Saba (October 29, 2015). "GLAAD is honoring Tyler Oakley at San Francisco gala". mashable.com. Retrieved September 25, 2016.
  47. ^ Jarvey, Natalie; Svetkey, Benjamin (July 10, 2015). "Tyler Oakley - THR's Top 25 Digital Stars". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved September 25, 2016.
  48. ^ "5th Annual Winners & Nominees". The Streamy Awards. Retrieved September 25, 2016.
  49. ^ "Tyler Oakley". The Shorty Awards. Retrieved September 25, 2016.
  50. ^ "Tyler Oakley - Silicon Beach 25: L.A.'s Most Powerful Digital Players". Hollywood Reporter. July 13, 2016. Retrieved September 25, 2016.
  51. ^ Spangler, Todd (June 21, 2016). "Famechangers 2016: Ranking the Top Digital Stars". Variety. Retrieved September 25, 2016.

External links[edit]