• YouTube has produced a new generation of celebrities and influencers that have turned posting videos online into lucrative full-time careers.
  • The most popular YouTubers include video game commentators, makeup artists, and vloggers.
  • These are the 26 most-subscribed YouTube channels from independent personalities who got their start on the video-sharing platform.
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YouTube has become the de-facto launchpad for the next generation of celebrities, personalities, and big stars.

Well-known names like PewDiePie, Shane Dawson, and Smosh have racked up millions of subscribers over the years by uploading videos on YouTube and forming seemingly personal relationships with their fans. From comedians to gamers to vloggers of all kinds, YouTubers have harnessed the video-sharing platform to build their followings and brands from nothing more than a video camera and a solid internet connection. 

To get a closer look into which stars rule YouTube, we looked at the SocialBlade rankings to see which channels have the most subscribers. We focused on independent YouTube creators, disregarding YouTube channels from music artists and record labels, multi-channel networks, and those without a face to the name.

These are the top 26 YouTube personalities with the most subscribers:

30. Smosh - 25.1 million subscribers

The Smosh cast members.

AKA: Ian Hecox and the Smosh cast

Location: United States

Video type: Smosh was started by comedy duo Ian Hecox and Anthony Padilla, and the channel was one of the first YouTube sensations. The channel is known for its various written sketches and comedy series spinoffs. It's since expanded into other channels dedicated to video games and Spanish language content.

Smosh has been active since 2002, and has grown tremendously since then. One of the founders, Anthony Padilla, left the channel in June 2017. Smosh has expanded beyond Hecox to include other personalities that host the channel's series and appear on Smosh's spinoff channels. The Smosh brand was acquired in early 2019 by Mythical Entertainment, a company owned by YouTubers Rhett & Link.

29. James Charles - 25.3 million subscribers

James Charles.

Location: United States

Video type: James Charles came to fame for his beauty content, but he also posts a number of vlogs, musical covers, and activities that bring in a number of other influencers. He's notably been involved, or tangential, to some of the biggest YouTube and TikTok drama over the course of the past several years.

28. VanossGaming - 25.4 million subscribers

AKA: Evan Fong

Location: Canada

Video type: VanossGaming is a gaming commentator, but what sets him apart are his compilations of funny moments while he's playing that are stitched together. 

27. Atta Halilintar - 26.2 million subscribers

Location: Indonesia

Video type: Atta Halilintar typically posts vlogs, house tours, and interviews with celebrities, the Jakarta Post reported. He was the first Southeast Asian YouTuber to receive YouTube's Diamond Play Button (awarded for reaching 10 million subscribers) and is Indonesia's biggest YouTube star.

26. JackSepticEye - 26.3 million subscribers

Sea´n McLoughlin AKA JackSepticEye.

AKA: Seán McLoughlin

Location: Ireland

Video type: JackSepticEye initially came to fame when PewDiePie mentioned him in a video in 2013. His channel is centered around the Let's Play-style of video gaming videos with accompanying swear-riddled commentary and charity livestreaming.

25. AuronPlay - 26.9 million subscribers

AKA: Raúl Álvarez Genes

Location: Spain

Video type: A popular Twitch streamer, AuronPlay's YouTube videos are a mix of vlogs, internet commentary, and gaming content. 

24. A4 - 27.8 million subscribers

AKA: Vlad Bumaga

Location: Belarus

Video type: On his channel A4, Bumaga's videos are comedy-focused, and typically feature vlogs, challenges, skits, and pranks. 

23. Shfa - 28 million subscribers

Location: United Arab Emirates

Video type: Shfa's channel, which appears to be run by her parents, is geared towards children and typically involve toys or activities like swimming or having parties. There are also a number of associated channels, including shfa2, shfa gaming, and shfa español, that have amassed thousands to millions of subscribers.

22. Ryan's World (Ryan ToysReview) - 28.1 million subscribers

AKA: Ryan Kaji

Location: United States

Video type: Ryan ToysReview — which was just recently rebranded to Ryan's World — is a family-run channel, but the star of the show is 8-year-old Ryan Kaji, who generated $22 million in revenue in a single year. 

21. Markiplier - 28.2 million subscribers

AKA: Mark Fischbach

Location: United States

Video type: Markiplier is another YouTuber known for his video game commentary, but he's recently expanded into sketch comedy. He's known for his colorful commentary and oft-dyed hair — and he sometimes sports a pink mustache.

20. Kimberly Loaiza - 28.2 million subscribers

AKA: Kimberly Loaiza

Location: Mexico

Video type: Kimberly Loiaza is one of Mexico's most popular social media stars, and her YouTube videos typically veer towards lifestyle content, challenges, and music. She also runs the channel JukiLop with her partner Juan de Dios Pantoja Nuñez.

T-18. Carry Minati - 28.4 million subscribers

AKA: Ajey Nagar

Location: India

Video type: CarryMinati's videos oscillate typically focus on comedy, commentary, and music. He's one of India's most popular YouTubers.

T-18. Toys and Colors - 28.4 million subscribers

AKA: Wendy, Jannie, Emma and family

Location: United States

Video type: While there's not much public information available on the family and group behind Toys and Colors, the channel has amassed millions of subscribers with family-friendly videos that show a rotating cast of kids who play with toys and act out different pretend scenarios.

17. RezendeEvil - 28.6 million subscribers

Pedro Afonso Rezende

AKA: Pedro Afonso Rezende

Location: Brazil

Video type:  Rezende started out as a gaming channel where he posted videos of himself playing "Minecraft." Since then, he's moved that content over to another channel, and now focuses mainly on comedy videos and daily vlogs featuring his friends.

16. Vegetta777 - 32 million subscribers

AKA: Samuel de Luque

Location: Spain

Video type: His channel, Vegetta777, is known for his gameplay videos for "Minecraft," "Saint's Row," and "Battlefield." His voiceover style differs from many other YouTube — he creates elaborate narratives and histories for the characters in his video games.

15. Luccas Neto - 33.5 million subscribers

AKA: Lunes

Location: Brazil

Video type:  Luccas Neto produces sketches featuring characters and stories aimed at children. He's the younger brother of comedic YouTuber Felipe Neto.

14. Luisito Comunica - 35 million subscribers

AKA: Luis Arturo Villar Sudek

Location: Mexico

Video type:  Luisito Comunica makes travel vlogs documenting his experiences in cities around the world. In his videos, he focuses on showcasing the cultures and histories of the places he visits.

13. Você Sabia? - 39 million subscribers

Lukas Marques, left, and Daniel Molo.

AKA: Lukas Marques and Daniel Molo

Location: Brazil

Video type: The channel "Você Sabia?", which translates to "Did You Know?", present videos with interesting facts and trivia from around the world. 

12. El Rubius - 39.5 million subscribers

AKA: Rubén Doblas Gundersen

Location: Spain

Video type: El Rubius is a gamer who does walk-throughs, reviews, and more, peppered with funny commentary. He started making videos on his channel, ElRubiusOMG, at age 16, and made it a full-time career at 21.

11. Fernanfloo - 40.2 million subscribers

AKA: Luis Fernando Flores

Location: El Salvador

Video type: Fernanfloo is known for his gameplay videos and wacky antics. His dogs sometimes make appearances in his videos.

10. Felipe Neto - 41.1 million subscribers

Location: Brazil

Video type: Felipe Neto makes comedic videos and vlogs about his daily life, current news, and celebrities. In 2012, his YouTube channel became the first Brazilian channel to hit 1 million subscribers. He released a Netflix original comedy special, "My Life Makes No Sense," in 2017. 

He's the older brother of another prominent YouTube, Luccas Neto.

9. Whinderssonnunes - 41.7 million subscribers

AKA: Whindersson Nunes

Location: Brazil

Video type: Whinderssonnunes has been making vlogs and comedic videos since he was 15. He uploads parodies, songs, movie reviews, and videos about his daily life. 

8. JuegaGerman (aka HolaSoyGerman) - 42.8 million subscribers

German Garmendia presenting at the Streamy Awards in 2016.

AKA: Germán Garmendia

Location: Chile

Video type: Garmendia is Latin America's biggest YouTube star. His channel, JuegaGerman, first focused solely on video games, but has expanded into comedic content.

He has another channel with a comparable subscriber base — HolaSoyGerman., with 41.2 million subscribers — but he hasn't posted to it in two years.

7. Badabun - 43.9 million subscribers

Location: Mexico

Video type: Badabun has grown in popularity with its series "Exponiendo Infieles," where the host interviews couples to see if either person is cheating on the other. The network's team of Spanish-speaking influencers is also notable for its comedic on-the-street interviews, and a Big Brother-type reality series documenting influencers living in a mansion together.

6. MrBeast - 51.6 million subscribers


AKA: Jimmy Donaldson

Location: United States

Video type: MrBeast is known for two types of videos: viral challenges — ranging from "Counting to 100,000 in One Video" to "Last To Remove Hand, Gets Lamborghini Challenge" — to attention-grabbing donation and charity stunts where he'll dole out thousands of dollars to small Twitch games and waitresses.

5. Dude Perfect - 54.9 million subscribers

AKA: Cory and Coby Cotton, plus three college friends (Tyler Toney, Garrett Hilbert, and Cody Jones)

Location: United States

Video type: The Dude Perfect guys are known for their compilations of trick shots and their Rolodex of famous athletes that appear alongside them in their videos. The channel has expanded into comedy, and the crew is often joined in their videos by a giant Panda mascot.

4. Vlad and Niki - 61.5 million subscribers

Location: United States

Video type: The US-based Vlad and Niki channel stars two brothers — Vlad, 7, and Nikita, 5. Videos show the brothers playing with toys and showing off their daily adventures.

3. Like Nastya - 67.9 million subscribers

AKA: Stacy, Nastya

Location: United States

Video type: The "Like Nastya" channel posts regular vlogs of a Russian-American girl named Stacy playing with toys and going on adventures with her family. Stacy also appears on other popular channels with millions of subscribers: Like Nastya Show, Stacy Toys and Funny Stacy.

2. Kids Diana Show - 73.2 million subscribers

Location: United States

Video type: The "Kids Diana Show" follows the antics of Diana and her brother, Roma. The channel features the Russian-speaking kids unboxing toys and going on fantastical adventures.

1. PewDiePie - 108 million subscribers

AKA: Felix Kjellberg 

Location: United Kingdom

Video type: PewDiePie is known for his popular videos where he gives commentary while playing video games. His content has expanded into coverage and commentary of internet memes and viral videos.

At one point, the Swedish gamer was locked in a months-long battle for the title of most-subscribed-to YouTube channel with Bollywood music company T-Series. His devoted fanbase took action to ensure his No. 1 spot with an extensive "Subscribe to PewDiePie" campaign that included hacking printers and buying billboard space. However, T-Series beat PewDiePie to the 100-million subscriber mark at the end of May 2019.

Kjellberg has also attracted negative attention for a long history of offensive racist and anti-Semitic remarks, which YouTube has punished him for. 

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