If actress Saoirse Ronan had identical twin little sisters, I suspect they’d look a lot like Brooklyn McKnight and Bailey McKnight-Howard.
Until a few months or so ago, these two sisters were nigh unto inseparable. In fact, that word describes the last 10 years of these top-tier social media influencers’ lives.
These two young women have spent the last decade expanding their sassy, carefree and fun-loving brand (which now includes their own lines of clothing, makeup, hair and accessory products). And a visit to their YouTube channel reveals a catalog of videos that capitalize on their irrepressible charm and zany goofiness.
Just as we’ve seen with many a young TV star, they’ve grown up on screen, from the age of 11 to 21, cataloging looks, dates, hairstyles, costumes and hilarious fails along the way.
Bailey recently married longtime beau Asa. And the two have both graduated from Baylor University (a school these two Mormon young women chose because it was “welcoming, Christian, had challenging academics, and was close to home”).
Still, the sisters insist that Bailey’s marriage won’t interrupt their YouTube output (one video a week). We’ll see moving forward if that’s the case. But even if they call it a day tomorrow, their hundreds of videos and more than a billion views (combined) on YouTube will likely cement their spot among the platform’s most successful content creators for years to come.
We’ve all been at a social event where a pair of friends is the raucous life of the party. You might want to be annoyed with how they suck up all the attention. But they’re just so adorable you can’t really stay in a churlish frame of mind for long while watching them.
That’s pretty much the story with these two young women. Whether they’re playing with their dog, helping each other buy prom dresses, critiquing marriage proposals or going to Baylor homecoming, their witty, easy banter feels pretty magnetic. It’s pretty much impossible not to be drawn into their awe-shucks wholesomeness and (for the most part) modesty as they do their growing up together.
Occasionally, videos focus on helping adolescent girls navigate intimate topics with themes such as “Bra 101” and “Period 101,” videos that …
… assume a certain level of age appropriateness on subjects some parents may not want daughters getting information about from a YouTube channel. One such video is titled “Answering GIRL TALK questions You Don’t Want to Ask Your Mom.”
As the twins have gotten older, videos have focused on dates and, at times, kisses. Admittedly, that’s pretty PG stuff in our risqué CW world these days. But parents who have young fans will want to be aware that romance and some light physicality show up here.
The twins have various lighthearted videos that involve games like Truth or Dare and Never Have I Ever. They don’t push into inappropriate territory, but, again, these may not be games that parents want their kids imitating.
While researching Brooklyn and Bailey’s background, I came across a Substack blog post from writer Anne Helen Petersen that aptly sums up this YouTube channel’s appeal. Petersen writes of the twins’ decade-long influencer evolution:
“For their part, Brooklyn and Bailey managed to make the transition from Girls with Cute Hairstyles to Young Women Go to College But Stay Cute and Conservative—which includes the sub-narratives of Young Women Have Non-Threatening Boyfriends and Young Women Kinda Cultivate Their Own Style. (Their enormously popular YouTube channel is filled with a style of fun I would describe as classic church lock-in programming; their clothing line is still largely oriented towards teens). They’ve figured out how to do midriffs without sexiness, how to do relationships that feel platonic.”
In an era in which boundaries of all kinds get obliterated regularly, Brooklyn and Bailey’s channel feels pretty wholesome and grounded. At the same time, their videos also offer a master class in influencer appeal. And the level of “cute” that Petersen notes may inadvertently create pressure to measure up among young fans who may not have Brooklyn and Bailey’s effortless appeal.
After serving as an associate editor at NavPress’ Discipleship Journal and consulting editor for Current Thoughts and Trends, Adam now oversees the editing and publishing of Plugged In’s reviews as the site’s director. He and his wife, Jennifer, have three children. In their free time, the Holzes enjoy playing games, a variety of musical instruments, swimming and … watching movies.