Benny Cerra, a makeup artist from Carbondale, made it through to the next episode of beauty guru James Charles’ “Instant Influencer.”

Cerra, 18, known for creating wild and creative looks on Instagram (@bennycerra), is competing against four fellow emerging beauty artists (called “micro influencers”) in the “Project Runway”-style show.


In the first challenge of episode two, the artists were tasked with getting ready for a red carpet event in just 30 minutes. Later in the episode, they had to create a drag-inspired look. Cerra designed a neon and floral look, inspired by one of his favorite fashion dolls in his collection.

YouTube star, drag performer and “RuPaul’s Drag Race” winner Trixie Mattel served as guest judge along with Charles and beauty influencer and president of the cosmetics brand Anastasia Beverly Hills, Norvina.

“I think that conceptually, this is my favorite look,” Norvina said. “It’s so beautiful. I love a trippy, neon, kind of ‘acid Barbie’ look.”

On top of the $50,000 grand prize, the winner of “Instant Influencer” also will receive the same filming equipment setup that Charles uses, which is valued at $10,000, as well as a collaboration with Charles on his YouTube channel, which has 18.6 million subscribers.

Episode three premieres on Friday, May 8, on YouTube.

How do you think Cerra did? Watch episode two below.