BLOGS PROVIDE OPINION, NOT ALWAYS FACT
It's vitally important to understand that blogs provide individual opinion and insight, not necessarily fact. The very nature of these online hubs provides a vast array of accessible information and personal experience, versus the corporate messaging and often glossy-magazine-edited versions we would see otherwise. If you want to know whether that new shampoo really does what it says, or whether it's worth investing in a £28 lipstick, a blogger will undoubtedly give you an unfiltered and honest opinion. However, when it comes to advice about skincare or ridding yourself of acne, it's worth understanding the credentials of the blogger and their background before you trust them implicitly. I think there's a huge difference between recommending a lipstick and dishing out advice on battling a skin condition, but equally it's about finding bloggers with whom you can build trust and relate. Which leads onto my next point...
DIFFERENT SITES OFFER DIFFERENT INSIGHT
I like to think that you come to LBQ for a dose of opinion, insight and raw honesty; I have a background in product development, advertising and in-store promotion and continue to work with a lot of brands on their marketing efforts. I know what I'm talking about. A young girl with a passion for nail polish and lipstick absolutely has her place, but it's a very different offering to mine. Similarly, makeup artists or dermatologists-turned-digital-influencers provide insight that I can't compete with. Put simply, different sites provide different roles within your overall beauty information repertoire - it's just about understanding how they all slot together.
YEARS OF EXPERIENCE COUNTS FOR SOMETHING
If an electrician undergoes an apprenticeship and learns on the job, does that make his experience and knowledge any less valuable than someone who has spent three years studying at University? Blogs are written by those absolutely passionate about their subject; they've often spent years testing and playing with products, doing their research or working practically in stores or with customers. Years of experience (whether that's just learning from books, spending all your money on eyeshadow or working as a nail technician) counts for something. I'm no makeup artist and I don't have a degree in science, but I have worked in the beauty industry for over ten years - writing the backs of shampoo bottles and working on European ingredient legislation, amongst other things. I may not know everything, but I bring something different to the table that I hope can help others.
IT'S ABOUT MAKING YOUR OWN DECISIONS
Like anything you find online, you don't read one article and take it as gospel. You do your reseaarch, read varying opinions and make an informed decision off the back of that. The internet and social media makes beauty accessible, aids discovery and allows those with a similar passion to connect; it's not about preaching what's right and wrong, it's about providing advice to those who may want or need it in the hope it can make a positive difference. The key is to never believe what one person alone has to say, in the same way you wouldn't believe a random person walking up to you in the street and saying the moon had imploded. Use your information wisely and you will be all powerful.
What do you think: do you need to be an expert to be a beauty blogger?
Features PR samples unless otherwise stated. To read my full disclaimer, click here.