I have been blogging about lingerie for quite a while now – it is nothing compared to the likes of Fuller Figure Fuller Bust or the Lingerie Addict but I can safely say that I am one of those bloggers that actually started blogging about lingerie more or less actively. Since then, the scene has burst out quite a bit and now, you can find new bloggers all the time eg through the Bratabase blog roll (speaking of that, I might do a favourite bra blogger roundup soon!). As most of the newcomers have not been “in the game” for more than a couple of months, I would like to give you a nice package of Dos and Don’ts of lingerie blogging and things to consider before setting up your very own blog. By no means I am an expert (hell, I have had the same blog layout for three years!) but I do know something and hope to share a bit of it to you, my dear readers.
The best part of lingerie blogging: meeting new people. The first pic is taken in London at night when I met the one-woman wonder Blue Reign for cocktails. The second one portrays Anna from Bras and Body Image, who is such a dear friend to me and I can’t wait to see her again soon (the pic is taken after Moda at Wetherspoons, yummy!).
Things to consider before starting:
- Your focus. Lingerie blogosphere is a large field of different topics and you can easily get sucked in by all the influences and inspiration you might come across. Try to think what would be the main focus on your blog whether its comprehensive lingerie reviews (my thang, as you may have noticed), industry insights, the fashion of lingerie or maybe something to do with body image or other more universal topics related to wearing and buying lingerie. Most bloggers seem to be all about the reviews at the moment – which is amazing for all the different fit info! – but maybe find out what else tickles your fancy, to make your blog more unique and interesting.
- Your anonymity/publicity. This was a hard one for me at first as I was a bit afraid what being half-naked on my blog would mean to my personal life. I know it’s a tough decision to make whether it’s about showing your face, body or whether to use your own name but when you make those decisions, make them for yourself and no one else. There is always the fear of getting called out for showing your more “private” bits on internet but those friends are not really your friends. Real friends know it’s your body and your blog and will not try to interfere with it.
- Your choice of language. As most of you know by now, I am a Finn meaning English is not my first language. I used to write some of my blog posts both in English and Finnish but as things got bigger, I had to desert Finnish altogether as it was just so much more time-consuming. Choosing English as my primary blog language has brought a lot of good things to me though – most of the lingerie companies I work with are international giants or smaller UK/Polish/US brands who would have never found out about me if I had written in Finnish. Also, writing in some other language than my mother tongue has brought me a much bigger audience than I ever could have hoped for and also, improved my English skills a lot.
- Your target audience. I personally never chose a target audience for my blog as I wanted to conquer world and write for everyone. Well, that is not exactly what makes a blog work but could easily lead you to side rails and lose your focus. As I am a full-busted gal myself and wear a small band size, I would say my blog is a very good resource for other girls like me who are perhaps DD+ and share the same passion for comfy lingerie. I am also quite young still – turning 23 in a couple of weeks actually! – meaning I would estimate my readers to be young women like myself. Indeed, my Facebook stats show that most of my fb fans are in the 18-34 yo category. I am also super lucky to have a few guest bloggers on board who clearly give my blog some great additional value and a bigger size range to cover.
- How much time and effort you want to put into your blog. This is so important! Too often I see blogs that start out very enthusiastically and then they just stop updating after a while. I do understand it even though it drives me nuts – lingerie blogging can be a very ungrateful job to do as not many people will even find your blog and it is even more difficult to get them to follow you as lingerie is not a topic most people find interesting to read about week after week. Be patient though – if you put enough thought to your blog (pics, text, topics, layout) you will gain some readers slowly but steadily. Usually lingerie blogs never grow to the size of some fashion/lifestyle blogs but the community and the passion for lingerie makes it up a thousand times if you just have patience to stick around.
Many other bloggers and professional blog sites talk about setting yourself some goals before starting a blog and always revising those goals after a certain period of time. I however, have not found this too effective on my blog but I am considering having some more goals in the future. This is why I have set up a goal of writing nine blog posts this month and so far, I am doing pretty good with it. I wouldn’t start by setting a goal of getting as many freebies as you can or making the blog your job one day, but something small that you can achieve in a rather short time so you can actually get the feeling of “I can do this!” It is so important as I sure as hell know that your motivation can drop at times!
So if after all these scarecrows, you want to start a lingerie blog (haha, JK!) I do have some advice for you to cope along the way whether it’s temptations or intimidating industry people. To get you in a right mindset for becoming a good lingerie blogger, here are some actual dos and don’ts that will take you quite far in your “career” 😉
Same picture of me for an upcoming review. The first one is clearly the unedited one, the second one has been edited with some lighting and colour changes and I have vanished a big mole off my rib cage. Simple changes, a huge difference!
- Write about things you love and care about. Blogs are a place for people to come and rest their brain a bit or to gain new information. For most people they are purely places of entertainment which is why I try to keep my blog as positive as I can – no one needs a truck a load of negativity in a world where news are full of wars and other bad things. Be honest about the products you write about but don’t bash – it brings nothing valuable to anyone. If a certain product doesn’t work for you, try to consider who it might work for. If you hate something a company has sent to you, send it back instead of writing tons of shit about it.
- Put effort into your pictures. I know some lingerie bloggers are not keen to show their face on their blog but somehow, I find the blogs with an actual face much more relatable. However, if you are sure keeping anonymity is your top priority, try to put effort into your pics in any other ways possible. Lighting and background are super important – people want to look at visually agreeable pics and keeping it simple and accurate you can make your reviews much more information filled. A white wall next to a big window is always a good option for a background! Also, take a few moments to edit your pics as no photo turns out perfect at the beginning. You don’t need Photoshop but simple a simple editing tool to tweak the lighting and colours a bit.
- Let brands know when you have written about their products – they are likely to post your review on their social media and maybe, if they like your blog they might just send you something to review in the future! Of course, not all brands are interested in smaller blogs but some are actually very friendly and will be interested to work with bloggers who are honest – but do it in a nice way.
- Set up social media accounts to share your blog posts and other stories via Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Also, be sure to endorse other fellow bloggers as well – you can form such great friendships through blogs and get the support you need when life treats you and your blog badly. I have chatted with my blog sisters countless of times about mean comments and other things and even stayed at their homes when travelling across the world. What could be more fun!
- Don’t blog for freebies. I know other bloggers have said it before but really, blogging to get something financially benefiting out of it is usually waste of time as people will see through you.
- Don’t be afraid to be yourself. Some brands will stay clear of bloggers who swear or put too much of their own personality in their work but usually, those bloggers with most genuine content are the successful ones. I have told a familiar brand rep (HI STEVE!) to fuck off for making too pretty lingerie only up to DD but he got the joke and burst into laughter. Cause he gets me and so will all the best people. You don’t need to be tasteless and scentless to be liked and you don’t need to be liked by everyone in the first place.
- Don’t get down about creeps. They will always be there, they will most likely wank at your blog pics cause these guys haven’t found out yet that there is actual porn that exists. Don’t reply to their emails or any sorts of messages and if you really want to get rid off them, check each account that follows you on social media and if necessary, block them. I have had several porn accounts following me on Twitter and it makes me sick, so I just block them completely. My blog is not porn or your wanking-material, it is not made for guys to drool over me but for women who need help picking out bras. End of story.
- Don’t be too naive about some brands trying to “work” with you. If you get an email suggesting a guest post on your blog from an actual e-commerce site, they are just trying to take advantage of you. Any blog posts that are done in collaboration with a brand who has approached YOU, should be compensated somehow. That does not have to be money, but it sure as hell shouldn’t be a sodding 10% from one of their products. Your time and effort is valuable and they should respect it. Also, don’t sell your work or ad space for too cheap as blog marketing is a huge deal and some brands want to take advantage of its on-trend status without practically paying you anything. Respect yourself and your own work.
- Don’t get into blog drama or fights. Things can get a bit intense sometimes and exchanging opinions is totally fine – until it turns into a pointless row which will only burn bridges. If you don’t agree with someone, think twice if it’s worth mentioning about and if it is, try to phrase it the way no one gets extremely offended.
Blogging is a fun hobby and blogging about lingerie is truly, really such a sisterhood of women who support each other no matter what. The best thing about these three years I have been blogging is definitely the people – the friends I have made, the brand reps I have met and the little notes that are sent along with the packages I receive. I know it might sound a bit fake to some but I truly believe lingerie industry is such a welcoming one compared to the fashion industry as a whole.
If you have any tips of your own or questions regarding starting your own blog, please let me know in the comments! I would also be happy to answer any questions you might have 🙂