Tuesday, 2 April 2013


Forgive this late uploading of a post but I felt that I just had to share my thoughts. Whilst going through my blog feed I noticed Jane from British Beauty Blogger had written a post titled 'Are You A Selfie?' which I immediately clicked on. Forgive my naivety but I originally thought it was a post about self-photography which is something I'm currently much interested in because of my taking part in the 365 challenge (posts on this coming soon). It actually contained a rebuttle to the recently published 'How To Wear Makeup' piece in the Guardian. I love Jane's posts on these kinds of topics because not only can she construct a coherent argument she makes it witty and wry at the same time. I read Jane's post and then I read the piece from the Guardian. I mulled on it for some time. The entire length of a movie in fact. Then I decided to write and publish this post.

Firstly I want to make you all aware that the writer and journalist behind this article is in fact someone I enjoy reading the work of. She has written for several major newspapers, one of which I received regularly on a Sunday at one stage and devoured with avid enthusiasm. The writing is centered around an email from a reader asking where to start when it comes to products because the beauty halls intimidate her (don't they intimidate us all sometimes?). The writer then goes on to talk about her own wariness of beauty products and her own personal recommendations before mentioning where to get the best advice on beauty from. That's when this little paragraph pops up:

For tricks on application and unexpected product finds, the best thing to do is to find beauty columnists and bloggers you trust, though God knows that isn't easy. To be brutally honest, many beauty blogs consist of little more than selfies and uncritical gush about whatever free products the blogger got sent that morning. But there are good ones out there.

To be brutally honest this journalist needs to do some more research on what she considers to be 'beauty blogs'. For starters beauty blogs contain 'selfies' because who better than the authors of these blogs to display the products they're talking about? Also, I personally can't hire a model to shoot professionally every time I want to show what a product looks like - can you? I like to show products on the actual part it's meant to be used on instead of using the back of my hand for swatches all the time. A lot of bloggers feel this way and this includes a lot of the respected and most established bloggers on the internet too.

As for the 'uncritical gush about whatever free products' I got sent that morning? I can count on one hand the samples I have been sent specifically for blogging purposes. Many other bloggers I know have been sent the same amount and even less. As lovely as it would be to receive a product specifically for gushing over (what a happy problem that would be) unfortunately we bloggers know all too well how hard the race for PR approval is and the blatant ignorance some PRs show towards us including the disregard shown for all of the hard work that we put into each of our blogs because they'd rather keep sending samples to land on the desks of beauty editors which might never feature the product at all.

If and when I find a product that I like I am very 'gushy' about it purely because it works. I like it. The shade suits me. The formula works. You get the picture. When I find a product that I dislike I sometimes write about it too. I say 'sometimes' purely because I have written negative reviews in the past but who wants to be a Moaning Minnie all of the time? There are plenty of products that I actively avoid but just because they don't work for me, my skin type and tone and tastes or doesn't meet my standards doesn't mean that it won't work for someone else.

Yes there are some bloggers out there that gush over their most recently acquired products for the sake of being sent more and there are bloggers that might as well be living in their own advertisement campaign. However everyone in the blogging community can spot them a mile off and we know not to trust their opinions implicitly even if their photography is amazing. 

Back to the article and the writer goes on to mention all of the bloggers that she thinks are worth a browse. I agree that they are great but she's also included a couple I scratched my head at and consider to be boring. That's just personal taste though. After reading Jane's view of it all I agree that evidently the journalist behind this publishing has obviously just written from her own perspective and that's not something I would judge her for but, big BUT, she obviously, like Jane points out, doesn't know what it is to be a beauty blogger or about the amount of work that goes into writing one.

For those of us not on the mailing lists of the most desirable brands - or any brand for that matter  it's our own unpaid time and effort going into the writing, it's our own money being spent on the latest products and camera equipment and it's our own emotions that get severely stung when someone simply writes off us bloggers off as freebie-grabbing and selfie takers. Bloggers have a real impact on the beauty industry and I know I would trust the word of most bloggers over the magazines any day, including taking a good hard look at everyone's selfies.


  1. I was thinking exactly the same when I saw Jane's post, reading both your posts I was sat nodding and 'mhm'ing to myself, much to the amusement of my parents! I've never been sent anything for blogging purposes, and it'll probably stay that way, companies probably don't take me kindly because I very rarely come to even an 80% positive review, I'm a criminal pessimist/moaner. Just goes to show this journalist is doing the usual on-the-outside-looking-in that we always see in the tabloids, assuming we do all this work and get paid through the nose for it providing we toe the line and praise the hell out of brands. Really? Allllllrighty then! x

  2. I could not agree with you more. Some of my better written posts are the ones in which I have a problem with the product. My negatives may actually be someones positive aspects of the product so I highlight my concerns anyway and let my readers take from the review what they wish. Magazines are paid to show the product in a positive light and more times than not tell you nothing more about it than what you would find on the label of the item anyway. I love blogs because they are written by real people. Pictures are of real women wearing the product. Not an airbrushed picture which has been made to look a certain way and in fact does not reflect the true appearance or fit (in the case of clothes) of the product. Bloggers influence what I buy more than any other advertising out there, and many of the things I have purchased I would never have even looked at if it weren't for the recommendation of a blogger. I wish more bloggers got free samples of products (providing they reviewed them with an honest opinion). Although I may be biased because I am a blogger myself; the time, effort and money that goes into the blog is more than that of any writer in a magazine.

  3. Such a great post! Couldn't agree with you more, some people are just very ignorant about bloggers and the amount of hard work and honesty we put into our blogs :(

    C x
    Lux Life Blog

  4. I so agree! It's so frustrating when people box beauty bloggers like that. Yes thee are some irritating people that rave about free stuff but majority don't. I'd never ever lie about a pr product and when I did write a rave review of pr product and I was so nervous people would think its a lie. x

  5. I love this post. I'm still quite new to blogging etc, and even I can tell the false ones..


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