I get the impression that people who don't blog think that being a blogger is all sweetness and light; a bit of a game really. And I can see why people would think that because we do get to play with makeup, take pretty pictures and write about it... But then people don't see 'behind the scenes' to realise what we see, feel and hear on a daily basis. I think that no matter how big or small your blog is, you'll be able to relate to at least some of the points in this blog post. I know what we do is a hobby (for most of us) but I personally would love to be able to make a career out of it and I take my blog very seriously. There are so many thoughts and feelings that go with being a beauty blogger, it's not just about playing around, it's much more than that... I try and take the good with the bad, but here are just some of the thoughts I have on situations that I've been put in through beauty blogging.
I'll start on a good note because let's be honest blogging can bring some absolutely amazing, out of this world opportunities... From seeing a press release of a soon to be released product before any member of the general public knows about it, to attending swanky events with some of the most famous faces in the industry. Fashion/beauty/lifestyle blogging can give you the best in experiences that you wouldn't get anywhere else, I never thought that I'd have done some of the things I've done when I started blogging.
Of course, the blogging community is massive and with things like Twitter we can all stay in touch and talk about what we all have in common... A passion, whether its for fashion, beauty or lifestyle. I have 'met' some of the most amazing people via twitter and actually met in real life some equally fab bloggers; Sinead (daintydollymix), Carla (girl with the golden touch), Ray (raywhoisshe), Tor (that's peachy), Lizzie (cupcakes and cosmetics), Frances (Frances Cassandra) and Annie (Quarter Life tales of Annie bean)... To name but a few and I hope to meet lots more this year!!
A massive makeup collection
Naturally, through beauty blogging my makeup collection has slowly grown bigger and bigger, it's nothing compared to some people's but my friends have been known to stare in awe at my collection. Some of them I've been lucky to receive from generous PR's and brands, others I've bought with my hard earned money... Which brings me onto another perk of being a blogger.
The dreaded word that causes so many arguments and tension among beauty bloggers. I think some people try and take the high ground about samples, let's face it, everyone loves a freebie and anyone who says otherwise must be lying or have more money than sense. However, PR's and brands only have a limited budget when it comes to samples so naturally they give them to the blogs that they think will get them more coverage (makes sense, right?) but there's nothing more infuriating for me than when I see new bloggers asking for free samples with a sense of entitlement... Samples are one of the wonderful perks of being a blogger, but they are certainly not a given, so please don't tarnish the name of bloggers (as if it needs it!!) and keep your shopping lists to yourself.
While I'm on the subject of opportunities and samples, there's obviously the opposite feeling that comes with the whole notion of free stuff and fab events. Rejection and feeling a bit worthless. It's infuriating for me when I see someone with less than 100 followers asking for stuff and actually getting it.. Why?! That's as much the PR's fault as it is the blogger, if they are given in to of COURSE they're going to ask for more, because it becomes the norm! It's taken me 18 months to get over 500 GFC folllowers and I don't expect to have PR's falling over themselves to send me things, that's just not how it works and I don't expect it. You've got to take the good with the bad in beauty blogging and accept that there will always be someone with a bigger reach than you waiting to accept an opportunity. Although I've never been 'rejected' in the strictest of senses, that's because I don't ask for stuff... but I've been left feeling not good enough on a number of occasions and its an awful feeling.
Seeing my following grow over a period of 18 months has been a roller coaster; with the new followers have always been unfollowers, who do so without having to give a reason. I suspect a lot of blog unfollowers are serial campers who follow just when I have a competition running, however I still get a bit of a wrench in my stomach when it happens, I work hard to gain followers and if I see them dropping like flies I worry a bit! Twitter followers are a little different, there are so many bots and fake accounts that an unfollow doesn't hurt so much, but then came the apps that tell you WHO has unfollowed, last night I had my favourite ever blogger/YouTuber unfollow me and It upset me quite a bit if I'm honest, I don't know what I did or said to make her do it or whether it's just twitter being a pain. Either way I was gutted and I've even gone as far as emailing to ask why, which may be seen as sad and a bit weird but I really admired her and am genuinely sad to lose her as a follower. I know followers aren't everything as people keep repeating but in this industry, followers talk. I know stats do too but followers are what people can see on the face of your blog, they're what make them contact you. Unfortunately, the more followers you have the more seriously you seem to be taken.
A terrible trait that rears it's ugly head when someone else gets what we wanted, I'm guilty of it and I'm sure most other bloggers are! We might not always show it but it happens, it's natural. I'm insanely jealous of the bloggers who have really 'made it' quickly, I want to know their secret weapon, their formula for success but there isn't one I don't think. Then there's things like the Cosmo Blog Awards which happen at the same time every year; bloggers stumble over one and other Yes you need to be good at what you do but I very much believe in being at the right place at the right time to get your big break... It's not necessarily what you know, it's who you know.
Praise & Critcism
At the end of the day we are posting ourselves onto a global stage which is open to anyone for them to pass judgement on us, our lives, and our work. I love it when someone tells me I'm doing something right whethe it's in a blog comment or on twitter, it gives me that warm fuzzy feeling. I'm quite lucky in the sense that I haven't had THAT much criticism and I've never had a troll. The key is, don't feed the trolls, they thrive on being noticed and they'll be sitting behind their computer rubbing their hands together when you give them that all important reaction. As for criticism, as long as its constructive I urge you to deal with it gracefully. Unless someone is saying 'you're a crap blogger and I don't like you' my advice is to just say thankyou for your feedback I'll definitely think about what you've said because at the end of the day, people aren't always going to tell you what you want to hear. I'd love to hear some constructive criticism and I'd love it if people could bring themselves to listen to me and be polite if I have something to say.
Freedom of speech and expression
Following on from that, I have noticed that I tone my opinions down A LOT on twitter, purely for fear of being set upon by what feels like a pack of wolves if I say the wrong thing. I've seen it happen and it's awful! It's like being back at school, I understand that there will be a difference of opinion no matter what but try and be nice about it. Don't be all underhanded and passive aggressive, be up front and adult about it.
Source: Clickin Moms
There are thousands upon thousands of blogs now, the market is so saturated its become increasingly important to find your niche and write stuff that people actually want to read. I've figured that I'm just going to write what I want to write, what's the point in bowing down and becoming a slave to your blog, people notice when you're being fake and churning out posts that mean nothing to you. You lose your passion and it really shows. Being original is so hard, so just try and be yourself for a while, you might find it works just as well, I think we forget that our personality is the most original part of us, we can all wear disco pants and litas (well I can't cos I'm a bit fat), and covet the latest MAC collection but we can't copy each others personality, we are all different... And that's GOOD! there will be people who still don't like what you like, because they dislike your personally but that's life, you can't go through it being liked by everyone can you, for you to try and please every single person in this world would be impossible as well as a little foolish.
Phewf! That was one long post and well done if you managed to get to the bottom!
What are your experiences of blogging?