Eva Gutowski wants her followers to feel like surfer babes who constantly travel the world

Eva Gutowski is not just a YouTuber.

While Eva, also known as MyLifeAsEva, did start out by blogging and making YouTube videos, she doesn’t want to be put in a box. So far, she’s also gotten modeling, producing, acting, and her own business under her belt. Eva wants to be a creative, without an official job title, and it seems that there’s no stopping her.

She has a deep love for Oprah and Ellen, and she cannot do any work without making a list first (we hear you, Eva). She’s starring on a new AwesomenessTV show called “All Night,” which you’ll be able to watch on Hulu, but don’t worry – she’s still running her clothing line, It’s All Wild, too.

Eva basically has 6 full-time jobs, and we’re just wondering where tf she gets all of her energy! But again, her secret is to make a lot of lists. Maybe we could all take a tip from Eva. Check out our interview and photoshoot with her below, where we talk toxic YouTube culture, sexual assault awareness, and her beachy chic clothing line. 

How did you first get involved with YouTube?

I was really good at was public speaking, writing, motivating people and making everyone feel inspired. Growing up I always knew I wanted to do something creative, but there were so many things that I wanted to do, I couldn’t stick to just one creative job. That’s when I fell in love with Oprah and Ellen.

When I went to college, I decided to study broadcast journalism to follow in their footsteps. My freshman year of college, I decided to start a blog with my free time. Readers started asking for videos, so I filmed what they asked for on a canon rebel, and uploaded it to Facebook.

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Little did I know, I was gaining a new audience on YouTube that I discovered months after I’d been uploading, and that became my first YouTube audience. Then I decided I liked talking to a camera more than blogging, so I decided to make videos once a week!

What did you originally want to share with the world and how has that expanded over time?

It sounds cliché, but my life goal has always been to inspire people. I just knew I wanted to be a person to look up to for inspiration, to share advice. I had this idea that every college student has, like, “Okay, I’ll graduate college, get an unpaid internship somewhere, work my way up for 20 years, and then maybe when I’m 55 I’ll have the job I want.” Which, for me, was to have my own talk show, write books, act, and produce.

With YouTube, I found myself living my dream much sooner. My audience on YouTube is the audience I wanted to share my advice with my whole life, so I couldn’t ask for anything more. I get to produce content for them that I created. I get to make things for them that I didn’t think I’d have the opportunity to do for a really long time, and it’s really cool because I get to be a youthful figure to look up to and relate to.

What do you think about the toxic part of YouTube culture and people like Logan Paul?

I’ve always been an observer before I dive into something. I think it’s smart to observe where trends are going and then decide if I want to be a follower or a leader. I’ve always noticed that while being a follower gets you places faster, being a leader keeps you places longer. I tell myself to step back and look at who I am as a person, and if someone is doing something that’s not me, I stick to me, and it’s always worked out for the better.

I also think that everyone has a responsibility with their audience – if you have 9 million followers, or just 10 people watching your stuff. Who you’re around influences how you think, so I always try to surround myself with the most open-minded and educated people. I try to live the same way, so that my audience can also grow to be educated and open-minded. I want everyone that follows me to grow up to be a good person, vote for what they believe in, and be worldly, educated people that stay “woke.” That’s my goal.

What’s your favorite video you’ve ever made and why?

My favorite video I’ve ever made would have to be my video to bring awareness to sexual assault, because it exposed how so many cases go forgotten even when brought to the police. It showed my own story, which I had been living with since age sixteen. It was honestly one of the worst things that ever happened in my life, but it shaped me into who I am today, which is a strong and empowered woman.

I had to make the decision when I was sixteen to keep letting my assault ruin my life, or to take it and find something positive about it. I told myself that someday I’d get to do something big with my life, and my assaulter wouldn’t. I wouldn’t take back anything in my life that’s happened to me.

That’s when I was like I have to put this story in my book. This is something good I can do for so many people going through the same struggle as me. It was my responsibility with my platform.

I was so scared of what people would think about the video, but within the first hour of the video being up, I received over 15,000 comments of people sharing their stories for the first time! I sparked my own movement of empowerment, and that video still continues to grow today, sparking more women and men to share their stories.

What made you choose your name, MyLifeAsEva?

It’s so funny, I never in a million years thought I’d be MyLifeAsEva. Six years ago, all I wanted to do on YouTube was save some punk emo band lyric videos somewhere. YouTube was all, “You need an account, create your username.” I was like, “Um ok – let’s see. MyLifeAsEva. That’ll work. Next.”

When I started making videos I just uploaded it onto that account and it turned into my name! I hated it for a minute and thought about changing it. But I always told myself my channel is an encompassment of my life, and it’s like fate that I made that username randomly because it’s catchy and it feels like who I am.

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You’re also the founder and creative director of the clothing line It’s All Wild, that launched in 2017. You’ve said the line is inspired by the places you’ve visited around the world. 

It’s All Wild is like the cooler, surfer side of me that I wish I was all the time. The brand is inspired by 60’s French film stars, wild adventure, and young love. I can’t just pick one destination! I’d say the romance of Cinque Terre, Italy, and the hot, tropical vibes of the Bahamas.

What can we expect from It’s All Wild for 2018?

I’m currently designing tons of accessories, adding swimwear, and adding a lot more must haves. I love building versatile pieces that I could wear on a daily basis in a ton of different ways. There’s always a way to incorporate It’s All Wild pieces into your life daily, which saves you money and time getting ready, as well as space when packing for an epic vacation, and that’s what I love about the brand the most.

You utilize Instagram a lot for It’s All Wild, with a lot of the new features implemented for brands to sell their products. Are these new features helpful to your brand at all?

I love tagging products on Instagram. It’s so fun and looks really cool at the very least. I think it definitely helps to get people to see the product in a lifestyle photo, but also able to click through to see it on a model, versus having to go navigate through the website to find it.

You’ve also starred in the YouTube series “Me and My Grandma” and “How to Survive High School.” What was it like having your acting career premier on YouTube? How is filming for YouTube any different from filming for a TV series?

I was really nervous acting along side of Rhea Perlman in “Me and My Grandma,” because she’s such an epic and well-seasoned actress. I wanted to make her proud, and also completely shatter the idea that I can’t act because I’m a YouTuber.

It’s not uncommon that people who aren’t actors get acting jobs and sometimes don’t live up to their roles. I didn’t want to be that person. I know that any acting job I take on, I not only have to prove to others that I deserve the role, but to prove to myself that I can improve and work as a serious actress.

It’s really different filming my own videos versus filming for a TV series. I’m still adapting to the difference. Large crowds freak me out, but I’m getting used to having 100 people watch me deliver lines versus being in the company of just myself. In the past year, I’ve had two make out scenes, one sex scene, and two nude scenes in front of a huge crew, so I had to adapt to big productions quicker than I thought I would.

You’re going to be starring in a new AwesomenessTV comedy series on Hulu called “All Night” – what can you tell us about the show?

First off, the show is amazing and hilarious. I play Lyssee. She’s a bit psycho, but totally accepted in a “you can’t help but love this person but you don’t know why” type of way. I think a lot of people who watch the show will really gravitate to her. She’s got a lot of moments that will make you laugh.

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Do you feel like your hobby/passion has turned into more of a job? If so, does that make you feel about it any differently?

There are so many things I want to do and I’m a total perfectionist, which ends up being a bad thing kind of, because there’s only 24 hours in a day and only one of me. It’s amazing that I am blessed to be able to write and act and produce and be an entrepreneur all in one day, but it definitely is difficult to manage it all by myself.

I’ve always written every word in my books and edited every detail of every video I’ve made and I’m scared to give even a bit of that up because I’m so proud of what I know I can do myself. But it’s a full time job to be the creative director of a clothing brand alone – I have six full time jobs that I work every day. It’s hard work, but at the end of the day, it’s all my dream so I don’t mind not sleeping some nights to follow my dreams.

I’m still young and I’m following the emo side of me, just reciting “Bring Me The Horizon,” here, but “we will never sleep, cause sleep is for the weak!” [laughs]

You wrote a book called “My Life As Eva: The Struggle Is Real.” What is your book about and what inspired you to write it?

I decided that the first book I’d write would be about my life, as I know it. I’d get all the advice I had out there because that is the basis of what I do on social media. The book is all about what I’ve learned in the most pivotal moments of my youth – junior high to college. I wanted to give people advice about the years that shape you, when you first deal with a bit of hardship.

How do you juggle all of the work that you do: producing, writing, acting, social media, YouTube, and more?

I make a lot of lists and have three agendas I carry around daily. I write everything down and cross stuff off as I get it done. I only work well when I make lists, so it’s basically just me from morning to night in my office crossing stuff off. It’s hard work juggling all my jobs and a lot of times it gets stressful, but I wouldn’t have it any other way.

What do you do to chill tf out when you desperately need it?

I surf or book a plane ticket to somewhere new. I’m the type of person that books a plane ticket somewhere new while on a plane home. I don’t need plan time. I don’t find it stressful I find it exciting. I still work full time when I travel, so it’s not really a vacation, I just love being in new environments at all times. If I can’t find time to travel, I surf as much as I can. I like to longboard in Malibu and ride shortboard in Hawaii with my friends that live on the islands.

Favorite show to binge watch rn?

I’m a huge fan of “Shark Tank,” “Say Yes to the Dress,” and old reruns of “America’s Next Top Model.” I also love murder mysteries and documentaries about conspiracy theories!

Music you listen to in the morning?

I feel like in another life I was definitely a DJ. In the mornings I switch between three playlists depending on how I’m feeling – morning acoustic folk for lazy Sundays, old hits that get you out of bed like Daryl Hall and John Oates “You Make My Dreams,” or a deep house playlist when I immediately want to spring into work mode.

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Brand you’d love to work with?

I want to work with a brand that puts a lot of focus into music, like Beats or Sony. I use my headphones for everything. Also, I only shoot on Canon cameras so Canon would be an amazing partner to create really cool stuff with.

Plans for 2018?

Aside from YouTube and It’s All Wild, music is all I can think about for 2018. I want to make music. I want to learn how to DJ and produce. I know it’s something I’d be good at, so I’m forcing all my DJ friends to give me lessons in exchange for Chipotle.

What kind of phone case do you have?

We actually just launched really rad phone cases at It’s All Wild. One is hand drawn watercolor artwork of my golden retriever Hanalei with a giraffe, and one is an aerial photo of the Bahamas that I took on a trip last year. I’ve been switching off between the two!

Since you’re one of the new faces for Fanta, what’s your favorite Fanta flavor?

Definitely pineapple!

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