why i stopped reading fashion blogs

by grechen on April 21, 2011 | RSS | FOLLOW ON TWITTER | FACEBOOK |

OMG. I just unsubscribed to every single fashion blog in my google reader. I’ll add the ones I truly miss back in after a while, but right now, I need a break. I look forward to reading through all the new items in my reader all day – then, when I’m done, I feel unfulfilled & frustrated. The truth is, many of the blogs in my reader are blogs I feel like I “have” to read because they’re popular and I need to know what they’re writing about. Really Grechen? What a load of BS.

I like reading blogs that are inspiring, interesting, funny, written by my friends :) and teach me something. I don’t like being called pet-names (unless it’s by Ashe), scrolling through 10 full-size outfit pictures with pouty lips, seeing pictures of your babies or kids, or reading post after post about the SAME party/PR event that every other blogger went to AND the free stuff you got for going. Why I haven’t removed these blogs from my reader before, I don’t know. Oh, yes, I do know: because I thought I needed to read them. To be informed. To read what all the BIG PR companies and reps were reading. To see what they found so appealing about that blogger. And of course I end up trying to figure out what makes them BETTER than me.

Maybe I’m wrong to admit this, but I have insecurities too. I question what I’m doing, how long I’ll be able to do it, what I’ll do next. And I question my physical appearance: am I pretty enough? thin enough (no), interesting enough? For goodness sake, I don’t even have a DSLR! Or a boyfriend/husband/BFF to follow me around all the time with a camera. How can I possibly be good enough?

Yes, the last bit was sarcastic – but I’m not afraid to admit that I feel a little envy every once in a while. And now I’m done with that little green monster. I’m better than that. I’m DIFFERENT than that. We thrive on our differences. No one person is “better” than any other, just different. And I celebrate that.

But I’m still not going to read blogs that don’t inspire me or make me smile. I hope no one reads any of my blogs because they “have” to…

Do you read a lot of fashion blogs? How have you chosen the ones you do read? How do you deal with fashion blogger envy?

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{ 102 comments… read them below or add one }

Catie April 28, 2011 at 4:05 pm

What an honest, thoughtful post. I agree especially about not reading blogs that don’t give you joy/food for thought just because you feel you “have” to read them.

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Ayanna Scott
Twitter:
April 28, 2011 at 7:41 pm

Honest.

I’ve had these moments more than once and it’s brought me to a similar understanding – it’s best to speak your voice than try to mimic another. People ask me often how to make their blog successful and I always tell them there is no blueprint, you have to do what comes natural. Being the best “self” you can be. It’s what will set you apart.

I think you gave a lot of bloggers an opportunity to say “Yea! Me tooooo” :)

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Ria April 29, 2011 at 12:58 am

I definitely end up unfollowing certain blogs even though they’re really big because they just don’t appeal to me. *kanye shrug* No big deal. Be true to yourself.

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L of Avid Accents April 29, 2011 at 10:30 am

oh my goodness….i am feeling this post so much. I stopped reading some fashion blogs because they simply weren’t helpful in my fashion life. i’ve never been into posts with more than 3 pictures of the same outfit. i tolerate it because some how showing every angle of your outfit has become blogger norm. A good full body picture and a few close-ups is enough for me.
I also stopped following bloggers that don’t look like or spend like me. sounds harsh but seriously i have no interest in following a model type frame decked out in expensive designers head to toe….i just can’t relate. I like affordable fashion blogs that provide creative and inexpensive ways to stay fashionable….if the blogger is curvy, she gets extra points :-)

ok end rant:-) thanks for starting this conversation. i think alot of bloggers are mimicking the “big blogs” and loosing creativity in the process.
~L~

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Bonnie
Twitter:
April 29, 2011 at 11:06 am

Could I love you any more???
You spoke the words that I have been thinking in my head EVERY TIME I come across one of these blogs.
I’m so glad that you have the balls to admit this. Maybe some people will take an effing hint.

http://www.glamkittenslitterbox.com/
Twitter: @GlamKitten88

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Bella Q
Twitter:
April 29, 2011 at 12:31 pm

Oh hello Gretchen. I knew I had to read this post, because Beautifully Invisible and Ashe Mischief both recommended it. Yeah, you’ve helped me a lot here. While I have long ago stopped reading the “super bloggers” I have a distended and bloated blogroll, and can never keep up with the reading. I have a bleeding heart and will read ones I don’t enjoy because I feel obliged- they maybe readers of my blog and I want to have an active exchange with them. But I’m overwhelmed and like many, feel the pressing of guilty for being behind in blogger comments, for being behind in blog reading, and then the thought that I shouldn’t post as much so I can comment more, just punches the fun out of things. Damn it. You, bitchin’ Gretchen have inspired me to do a little honest thinking and weed the blog-roll. You’ve reminded me that this is for inspiration and pleasure, I’m not paid to blog or blog-read. Yeah, a big thanks to you on this. And if you want to add my blog to your roll, I’ll be pleased as a bee on a jelly donut.
the Citizen Rosebud

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SACRAMENTO April 29, 2011 at 1:07 pm

So well said, wow!!!
I only read people I love, inspire me, I learn from, etc…
I am for ever changing my blogroll. Sometimes a blog seems interesting, and after a few posts you realised that is all the same. Then, it is time to say good bye…
I never comment on the big ones. I find Karla´s closet very inspiring, but does she need 300 comment??.
Perphaps she does.
So nice to have found you.
XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX

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tymbre April 29, 2011 at 8:48 pm

Wow, I feel you. I often face this to at times. You know? I feel like I’ve spent alot of time on a post and worked hard at it and it almost goes un noticed (which is ok, bc I write for me and my loyal readers) most of the time, because I’m not apart of the “popular blog squad” … I’m over it! And satisfied with my blog life, and read only what inspires me. Thanks for this post!

Tee

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the clothing menu April 29, 2011 at 9:36 pm

Totally understand! I unsubscribed to a bunch of fashion blogs at the end of last year when I was getting overwhelmed from keeping up with it all and wondering why I was even following them all. A few months later, I re-subscribed to some of the blogs that I missed.

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Michal Stern April 30, 2011 at 7:04 am

This is a brave thing to say. In my google reader I have groups of blogs. The fashion blogs, the editorial blogs and the Israeli fashion blogs.
For blogs I really like I rename it and add “Good content” so I’d know this is a blog I love to read. Some I add “great pictures” so I’d know this is a blogger who puts extra effort and makes me inspired.
All of the others are truly for boredom reasons and most of the time as mark it as unread. It’s sad but true.
Maybe I should do the same and delete some of mine too. I’m a little afraid of the feeling “I’m missing something everyone else is seeing…”.

When I write my own posts, I think before publishing and ask myself whether I’d mark it as read or read the whole thing. This is my way of moving to trash ideas which was written about too many times.
I found out that when I write my true thoughts and feeling I get more readers and more visitors. When I did a post like everyone, just pictures etc – people just wasn’t interested.

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Gem
Twitter:
April 30, 2011 at 8:38 am

You have inspired me to have a clean up of all the blogs I read! I really don’t have the time to take the best pictures or the money for an expensive camera so why waste time try to emulate others, I’m going to work at being myself x

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Adorngirl
Twitter:
May 3, 2011 at 4:34 am

Thanks for being so brutally honest, as these are the kind of thing I come across myself, like how come they get so many comments, and views, and how that coreelates to them being better, and so on, and I am just going to follow the advice I give my little girl all the time, stop watching what everyone else is doing, and do what you want to do.

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Mj May 4, 2011 at 4:28 pm

Grechen-

I couldn’t agree more, when I first started blogging I subscribed to the blogs you speak if in hopes on gaining some insight on how they do what they do. When in reality, me and every other blogger are reading the same thing, slowing morphing the world of fashion blogging into perfectly posed, sky-high heeled, cigarette smoking, blog drones. NO THANK YOU. I want my blog to be helpful, witty and refreshing, and something that my readers can interact directly with, not some photo diary on how to be fashionable in today’s society with no true substance. You’ve inspired me to work harder at creating a better experience for my readers, not the PR agencies. So, thank you Grechen, your powerful words have been engrained in my blogging soul.
Sincerely,

- Mj

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Anay May 6, 2011 at 2:58 am

I feel the same way! I come across a lot of blogs like that. I’m only subscribed to a few that I feel is down to earth and more of my own personal style blog. My blog is definitely like the others. I don’t have anyone to help me with my photos, nor do I have a fancy camera to take great photos. I blog pretty much for myself and for the average person because I love shoes and I love to write. I’m definitely not rich to buy super expensive shoes, although I like to treat myself every once in a while. I sometimes feel like they’re completely above my level and 10 times better than me because of their hundreds of fans and it seems only right to follow them. You read about their start of blogging and their fan media skyrocketed in just a few short months and you’re like WOW! They’re awesome. OH LOOK they’re going to Milan for a fashion show!! I definitely don’t have hundreds of fan, actually I only have my husband following me. lol My mom had pointed out one blog I was looking at, at the moment and said oh you should be like her and do photoshoots like that. Um? Really, I’m sorry I don’t go out everyday and just stepping out into my back yard to snap a few photos would be true to myself or my reader(s) HAHA You don’t have to post EVERYDAY. So all in all, Rome wasn’t built in a day. It’ll take time for everything to develop for me and I think I can accomplish this by staying true to myself and blog. Granted, I have nothing against these ladies and gents, they do what they do best and well. This post truly is inspiring to up and coming bloggers like myself. Thank you for being honest and sharing this part of you. =]

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Anay May 6, 2011 at 2:59 am

I meant my blog is definitely NOT like the others. HAHA.

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WendyB May 12, 2011 at 9:12 pm

I’ve always been extraordinarily bored by seeing the same runway pictures. from Style.com on every fashion blog. I just ignore those posts. Unless someone has something interesting to say about a show, I only need to see those photos once. At the original source, Style.com.

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Lydia Hibbing
Twitter:
May 13, 2011 at 1:31 am

Hi Grechen! This is my first visit to your blog and I found the article above very interesting. I agree that it is annoying to find the same fashion show photos on a plethora of blogs – all professional shots plucked from the major style websites. Original content is much better.
Your comment about not wanting to see 10 photos of the same outfit – I am guilty of that for sure. I guess I like to show the different expressions and views of the outfit and for me (maybe I am wrong?) it feels like I can show a bit more of myself and my personality by showing more pictures.
I browse through most of the blogs that I follow – some are inspiring and others are not. Honestly, I think I would feel really guilty if I just stopped following someone. I would be afraid that they would find out and it would hurt their feelings. Paranoia? I don’t know.
Thanks again for opening up this discussion!
Much love,
Lydia

http://www.styleindependent.com

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Becca May 14, 2011 at 3:28 am

Thank you so much for posting this- I am new to blogging and it can be a bit overwhelming to see all the blogs out there and trying to find whether yours is ‘good’ enough to have followers- this has made me rethink my blogging!

Becca x

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blahblahbecky.co.uk
Twitter:
May 14, 2011 at 4:22 am

Thank GOD for this post – I’m not the only one who feels too fat/unpretty/poor/boring to be a blogger after reading all of the ‘big ones’!

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diya May 26, 2011 at 12:23 pm

know your feeling. I finally had a breakdown about 2-3 months ago and realized that since I’m not really trying to “go pro”, I shouldn’t hold myself up to the same qualifications of a good blogger (comments back frequently, checks all other blogs, skinny, editorial-esque pictures, etc etc etc) that I admired. I should just do the best MY busy schedule allows me to do…which is post 2-3 posts a week and comment once in a blue moon…

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suzanne June 4, 2011 at 6:34 pm

one thing that i love about fashion blogging is that it’s NOT supposed to be driven by a PR agency telling us what is and is not cool. we blog because we want to and we wear whatever the F we want! it is disheartening to see people blatantly ripping off the popular bloggers and it also makes me feel like i’m back in high school (and that is just not my scene). i like looking at the pretty pictures but the blogs i love to read are the ones where the author has a voice, lets us into their world, and wears fun stuff that shows off their personality.

-suzanne
awkwardly chic

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lisa July 4, 2011 at 8:14 pm

Hi there , i have just started a fashion blog, i’m in shakey Chch New Zealand. we dealing with post quake(s) lost of fashion stores. I would love your feed back …you sound experienced. Lisahumphreyfasionista.blogspot.com

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Amanne
Twitter:
July 25, 2011 at 2:17 pm

Must Tweet this blog post! I am constantly purging my reader. If I come across your blog and find it interesting then I will add you but if you can’t keep my attention after a few weeks you get “unfollowed”.

I’ve only been blogging for a few months and I’ve realized very quickly that I want to make sure my blog isn’t all pictures of what outfit I’m wearing. I’m working on getting my blog to be an overall lifestyle blog where I can post about fashion but also about going to a baseball game with friends.
.-= Amanne´s last blog ..Bahrain’s Noon by Noor Invades Hollywood =-.

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vasare July 26, 2011 at 6:21 pm

What a great post, really honest! I totally agree with you, most blogs especially really popular ones sometimes are not even that interesting but you feel like you should know whats happening, think when the blog gets really popular and famous sometimes it looses its value cause people only comment to add a link to their own blog and get noticed, or just end up licking ass which is awful…But then again i always end up going back to check what else they have posted, think its time to unfollow :)

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Castle Fashion July 29, 2011 at 7:10 am

Just found this and I’ve got two words: I agree.
.-= Castle Fashion´s last blog ..Toys Of Intricate Conversation =-.

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Carrie August 2, 2011 at 9:31 pm

I am just finding this now and breathing a major sigh of relief: it’s like you crawled into my brain and spit out so many of my thoughts. I used to be primarily a fashion blogger and, although I didn’t wear a ton of fancy brands, started to feel a little vacuous and robotic. At one point I was so stressed out at times answering 80 to 100 comments/day + posting + reading + a full/time job that I was barely getting any sleep. I don’t mean to come across as a “wah poor me” at all–more that I had to stop and ask myself what the payback was. I don’t have fancy sponsors, I’m not getting picked up by magazines or any of that stuff, and more than anything I had to ask myself at the end of the day if I was truly benefiting anyone. After that I took a chill pill and was able to give myself permission to not answer each and every comment or read every blog. I care about my readers, but wrote an honest post about it and they got it. We’re all in the same boat to some extent. What I’ve noticed recently is that it irks me with the big fashion bloggers, fancy cameras, pushing products blatantly and NEVER interacting with their readers. At some point I hope to see some of those fade away because after awhile they’re nothing more than walking ads and there’s zero personality left. So much is scripted and blatantly RIPPED OFF from smaller, less well-known blogs. I’ve seen it repeatedly and it grates my nerve. Okay I’m done now, but AWESOME post Miss Grechen. Werk!
.-= Carrie´s last blog ..The Bachelorette Final Recap: Thank God It’s Over =-.

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Tura August 13, 2011 at 9:22 pm

EXACTLY what I think/feel/do!
I don’t add certain blogs just for that reason – if it looks like every other fashion blog out there with no spark or personality – just a repetition of what I just read than I unfollow. I actually relish the action of clicking the ‘unsubscibe’ button.
Tikkitiboo + Ahka Vintage
.-= Tura´s last blog ..COLOUR.FLORAL.VINTAGE. =-.

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DazzDiva August 15, 2011 at 2:39 pm

Thank you for your brutal honesty! I am a newbie to the fashion blogging world and I’ve felt EVERY emotion you laid on the table. Ultimately, I had to accept that I’m not a big city girl at a fancy PR company who gets the popular invites to the coveted events, but maybe there are more “me’s” in the world who will relate to my posts and just come back because there’s just something about me and my little piece of the world that they like.

I like you, so now I’m gonna follow you – but returning the favor is not a requirement!

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Inez October 9, 2011 at 3:37 pm

I only add a blog to my blog roll if I find it interesting and enjoyable whether it’s big or small. I am very quick to weed out bloggers who post a looooot of pictures of the same outfit in one post. 4-5 max and my eyes are rolling back in their sockets.
Though I very well appreciate them,but comments do not make or break my day. Neither do I envy blogs with loads of comments.
Blogging is just a pastime, a way to unwind and be out there in this big world. A way to see and experience what people think about this brown skinned girl.
I don’t feel it’s a competition. My blog is just about me. Rather than have a printed photo album I have my blog.

I appreciate your honesty on the topic. Very well written.
.-= Inez´s last blog ..Citrus Sunshine =-.

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karenlga January 15, 2012 at 6:24 pm

I’m not sure if this topic is still open or being read, but I have thoroughly enjoyed reading all of the comments to this post and your others. I don’t have a blog and have no interest in one. I go enjoy browsing them (one of my friends has one of top blogs in NYC and is friends with many of the type of successful bloggers everyone mentions) for new ideas here and there. I found myself in a rut and didn’t get as much out of magazines as I did the blogs. Being a reader I have noticed the comments are sheer advertisement for personal gain. There are a couple of those on here too. I rarely read blogger comments, if ever, so out of curiosity I read thru some comment sections. One word: boring! They all say the same silly thing: I love your: blank blank blank…..now read me. Problem is when you click on many of the blogs, they are not interesting and filled with the same ramblings as most Facebook comments. Easiest thing…bring up a few once in a while to look at, don’t subsribe and don’t feel obligated. Once you get in your forties, you’ll find that this type of thing has no bearing on your life one way or another. Good luck to all though!!

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