Do we love them? Do we hate them? How in the name of God do they afford all those clothes? How can I make my husband take outfit pictures of me while also avoiding divorce/him making me feel like the biggest eejit in the world/me actually being the biggest eejit in the world (Can you take it again, try a higher angle and no flash and make sure you crop out my arm … unless of course you think that I’d like the way my arm looks at this particular second in time?)
I’ll be the first to admit that I’m guilty of being well jeal when I see a blogger do her thirteenth haul of the week in prep for her thirteenth holiday of the year while I feel guilty about that Zara dress that I bought last week that ‘I really like but probably didn’t actually need which to be fair wasn’t that expensive and has a totally different floral pattern to the three other floral patterned Zara dresses that I own’. (Disclaimer – Zara are not sponsoring me to mention them but if they ever feel like they’d like to, I’d be open to consider a collaboration. Postal address for freebies available on request – or do you know what – I’ll just send it on anyway ye’re probably very busy!)… BUT if you can see beyond the fact that blogging (particularly fashion and beauty blogging) is now such a huge part of companies’ content marketing and if you can think of these platforms as well edited productions that, to be fair, a lot of work can go in to, I think that bloggers and their content CAN be useful, entertaining and fun.
So it can be a business – not for all bloggers, but for a few of them this is their job. These bloggers are essentially selling and marketing products for companies and brands, generating huge revenue and advertising their products to large audiences so why shouldn’t they be paid for their time and effort? I think that’s fair…however for me transparency is key. I think the majority of us realise that when a blogger raves about a certain product we need to realise that they are (often) being paid to do so…think of them like a sales assistant …. Of COURSE they’re going to tell you to buy their product – it’s their job. Where things become a little irritating for me is when I see bloggers living lives that might make younger, more impressionable followers or those who are for one reason or another, more vulnerable followers feel inadequate. It’s normal to be a teenager and not own designer bags…scratch that – it’s normal to be an adult and not own designer bags!!
I don’t think the solution to the problem is to boycott or berate these bloggers – I think we need to be honest to ourselves about what this relatively new role in society is…the larger bloggers/influencers/brand ambassadors are marketers, they are telling you to buy something so that when you do they will make some money.
The way I like to look at much of their content is the way that I look at ads in glossy magazines – it’s pretty to look at, the model in the ad didn’t pay what I’m supposed to in order to wear/use the product, it’s not something I sought out, it can be nice to look at but I have the power to turn the page and get on with my life, it’s most likely not a ‘true image’, a serious amount of glam, prep and thought went into it, it’s very similar to the 589 other ads in the same magazine AND that’s before we question the truth behind some of the ridiculous claims made in these ads/snaps/instas etc. (don’t get me started on detox teas).