Wednesday, September 23, 2015

The scary world of beauty vlogging

PS. I wanted to add cute gifs to this post, but as I'm technologically challenged, it didn't work. Sorry.You'll have to look at random photos from my Instagram instead.

I'm always conflicted whether I should post so-called opinion pieces from time to time, or just stick to product reviews. I'm not going to post skincare advice, ever, because I am not a cosmetologist, or a skincare professional. And besides, only a total idiot would take skincare advice from an unqualified blogger. Sadly, judging by the stuff seen in the beauty blogging world, there are idiots aplenty out there.

I was asked today why I don't do vlogs.
There's a short answer - I don't do vlogs, because I'm lazy, and a long answer - because the beauty vlogging world reminds me too much of high school, and I'm way too old for that shite.

High school was quite traumatic for me. It's not the time of my life I want to remember, or revisit, in whatever shape or form. No, thank you.

Kumamon agrees

There are some beauty YouTubers (of various levels of popularity) that I watch from time to time, mainly to keep up with new product releases. But as they are paid for their opinions, I tend to turn down the volume and just watch the images. Convenient and stealthy, if the only time you can watch YouTube is at work.

Being a small time "beauty" blogger (in quotation marks, because I don't do winged eyeliners and lipsticks) with only a handful of followers means that I'm pretty much an outsider to the beauty blogging community. And as such, few people, if any, pay attention to what I have to say.

Surprisingly, that has its good points. Because peeps like me fly under the radar of popularity, I can be as obnoxious and controversial as I want to be, and nobody's none the wiser.

We have a string of public holidays right now here in Japan and that means that I have some time to burn on Instagram and YouTube. And that's exactly what I was doing this morning.

There was this event called Beauty Week 2015 in Seoul, where the movers and shakers of the beauty vlogging world got together to eat, drink, look pretty and be merry.

And looking at the coverage of the event on Instagram and YouTube, it became painfully obvious that the beauty vlogging world is even more like high school than I thought.
You have the popular chicks, the prom queens, the homecoming queens, the upper echelons of high school life, err, pardon me, of beauty vlogging "community".

My cat doesn't give a fark. She's smart.

For them, this is business as usual. It's a job. They do their job. And they are damn good at it.
They worked hard for their success and hats off to them. They deserve to be admired for what they've accomplished.

Then you have the hangers-on. The adoring fans, who think that because their social media following might be in the low 5 figures, they are hot shots, too. Newsflash lovelies, you're not. Not even close. While appearing friendly and open on the surface, their mutual adoration societies are basically the extension of high school cliques. And can be just as brutal.

And then we have the masses, the misfits, the wannabes, the outcasts, the outsiders, and whoever else is left in the graduating class.

The top level vloggers understand that their job is to mingle with the masses and look happy doing so. After all, they get paid for their presence. The second tier, with its inflated sense of self importance, is a lot less accommodating.

While looking at the instagram photos from the event, it became painfully obvious that for the hangers-on image is everything. And that's no surprise, they are clawing their way up the vlogging food chain, so for them image equals credibility.

It got to the point that it was painful to look at.

Photos with the itsbubzes and xsparkages of the world were carefully tagged and marked with everyone's instagram handles, so they would be easy to find by the important people. Unlike photos featuring the happy-to-be-there-rubbing-shoulders-with-the-gurus members of the masses. And if said member happened not to have the physical appearance of a high-powered beauty vlogger? Hahaha! You can't be serious!
You can't expect the pretty people to remember the handles of the not so pretty people. An honest oversight? Who are you kidding!

All those deep thoughts made me hungry.

So there you have it.

My long answer as to why I am not interested in beauty vlogging. I want no part of that world.
I am happy being a small time blogger doing the stuff that small time bloggers do.
Small time beauty bloggers can be as controversial as they want. They do not answer to corporate sponsors and have no ambitions of turning pro. (At least I'm speaking for myself here).

Basically, being on the fringes of the beauty blogging community, we can say whatever we want to whoever we want however we want.

For me, to be a beauty vlogger and be taken seriously based on my appearance, first I'd have to go on GoFundMe, or whatever it is, and beg for money for dental and jaw realignment surgery. Preferably by some miracle-performing Seoul plastic surgeon.

Hey, at least I have cute arm covers!

So that's the end of that story.

What I can do instead is a podcast.
But what the hell would I talk about?
Any ideas?

PS. I am very aware that a similar pecking order exists in the "traditional" beauty blogging community as well, it's not exclusive to vloggers.


  1. I'd listen to your podcast. Talk skincare to me bebe.

  2. Ha! I like your blog, it's hibest and snarky! Love it!

  3. I so agree! I do watch beauty vloggers quite regularly but rarely ever listen to what they say and just try to get some inspiration for new products by watching the video. Most of them seem (at least to me) to be the popular kids and everything they hold in the camera is super-duper awesome but they hardly ever show "knowledge" about skincare. But maybe I'm just being nit-picky...

    1. You're not nit-picky. I feel the same!
      But skincare doesn't really lend itself to the video medium the way makeup does. Maybe that's part of the problem, too?

  4. I like looking at skincare videos! Just to see the texture and application of the products.

  5. A napiszę po polsku, a co!

    uwielbiam twojego bloga :). Jest świetnie pisany. A to, że firmy nie płacą ci za opinie i recenzujesz produkty, które chcesz lub ew. dostajesz powoduje, że jest oba bardziej "realny" dla zwykłego śmiertelnika
    Co do blogerek/ vlogerek i innego stworzenia. Lubię oglądać filmiki, ale tak dla samego faktu oglądania. Bo po pierwsze, sama się raczej nie maluję, po drugie (i to się chyba nigdy nie zmieni) zawsze się zastanawiam ile czasu zajmuje wykonanie takiego makijażu w realu. No bo te filmiki są już obrobione na maxa i świecą diamentami...

    1. Ano, bo wiesz, wiele osob nie zdaje sobie sprawy z tego, ze te filmiki sa tak obrobione i swieca diamentami, bo te vlogerki robia to profesjonalnie. Ich vlog to ich praca na caly etat i za to firmy im placa.
      A naiwne dziewczatka mysla, ze to tak z pasji...

      I dziekuje za mile slowa!!! :-)

  6. Apart from your rather great tone (that you refer to as controversial), the reason why I read your blog is your allergy to BS. 99% of the products that "beauty bloggers/gurus/vloggers" advertise do live up to the hype. That 1% is just chance. Keep up the great job!



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