I recently received a comment on my ATB BB series that got me thinking.
The commenter while congratulating me for weight loss spoke about how earlier she did not trust my opinion as a beauty blogger because I did not look a certain way – in other words, because I was fat and therefore not good looking, she thought that I should not preach about beauty.
To be honest I really don’t have any grudges against her for voicing her opinion. I actually am happy that she was honest enough to admit that the way a blogger looks does impact her opinion of the blog itself. There are probably silent readers like her out there who do feel this way but don’t express it as it sounds politically incorrect. As much as we deny it, there is a lot of thin privilege that operates in society.
There are lots of undercurrents to this thought. If I were to extrapolate it, it would also imply that only those people who can walk the ramp (aka have the dimensions/beauty of let’s say Tyra Banks) can credibly run fashion or style blogs, those who run movie / music review blogs should themselves have a background in media having either created a movie or some music themselves, and for food blogs, they better have been participants in shows like Masterchef. How else will I know if their food recipes taste any good?
The more I think about it, the more I am inclined to disagree with the sentiment of that comment. Yes, as readers we all do have the freedom to choose who we wish to follow & read. But I don't want that sentiment to deter anyone who wishes to blog.
As a follower & avid reader of a number of blogs myself, I feel that most bloggers do not position themselves as experts on a topic. Blogs are mostly a collection of opinions, thoughts, ideas that we have as end consumers about certain products (be it makeup, style or movies). Bloggers share with readers the lessons they have learnt as they have experimented with styles, thereby shortening our learning curves, so that we can learn from their mistakes.
There are exceptions, some bloggers do want to be seen as experts in their field, and therefore like any other profession they should be judged on their competence. If that means how they look is an important aspect for you, then so be it.
However the genesis of most beauty blogging lies in some rather vocal consumers taking to the internet to voice their experience with a product. To say that their opinion has lesser value because they don’t fit a certain individual ideal of beauty doesn't really sound logically to me. There are some beauty bloggers that I follow that don’t fall into my idea of beauty & neither does their look of the day (LOTD) makeup appeal to me – because I have a very different style aesthetic – however I really value their opinion of products because I know that they are honest and forthright with their thoughts. When I pose questions to them in their comment section, I see it as having a discussion with a friend who is equally passionate about makeup and will share their thoughts with me honestly enabling me to make a decision. I definitely don’t treat their word as the final & last word in beauty.
Besides if I were to start judging beauty & fashion bloggers basis their physicality that would mean that I have to stop following some of my favorite bloggers – including http://manfattan.com/ - a very confident & stylish fashion blogger.
As readers & bloggers, what do you think? Does the way a person looks become a defining factor in whether one should be a beauty or fashion blogger?