fashion, style

Are Fashion Blogs Toxic?

Between an inbox of fashion blogger’s posts, numerous promotions, tweets and Instagrams from my favorite fashion bloggers and brands, I’ve found myself shopping EVERY DAY. I’ve started thinking, “If I had that, I would be happier.”  This isn’t in line with what I fundamentally believe, but it happens!

It’s safe to say that immersing oneself in to the world of fashion can be a bit of a financial and emotional struggle. The very essence of reading or writing a fashion blog means you’re up to speed on the latest trends and you’re going to be inspired to wear some of them. Some of the bigger-named bloggers are not paying for what they wear (although several fail to disclose when items are gifted), and maintaining a wardrobe like theirs is unattainable for 98% of the population.  As an example, here’s the cost of ONE outfit a popular blogger wore last week:

Jacket $595.00

Tee $125

Jeans $168.00

Bag $660.00

Shoes $975

She mentions that said outfit is made-up of some of her ‘must-haves’. I must-have gone insane if I am buying $125 basic tee shirts. (A good style rule is to never pay more than $30 for a tee, and it better be organic cotton and made by the hands of adults in the U.S.)  That being said, she looks dope. Naturally, I begin to shop because I freaking know I can find a similar outfit at half the price. My finds:

Jacket $348

Tee $29.50

Jeans $34.99

Bag $49.95

Shoes: $113

The sum of my finds are 78% less expensive than the outfit this blogger wore. Yes, she looked adorbs…but if I spill red wine on the pieces I found, I’m not going to feel terrible. That’s what life is all about right?  …Not feeling terrible?

Ultimately, me being inspired by her outfit and finding a more affordable version is not an accomplishment. Will this outfit make me ‘happier’ for the rest of my life? Not likely. Happiness comes from quality time spent with those we love and time spent doing the things we love which, frankly, is a lot of hard work for most of us.  So, next time you see an outfit you amour – whether it is worn by a twenty-something blogger or model in Vogue – remember you are beautiful regardless of whether or not you bust out your Amex.


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  • CarlinaL

    This makes me happy because you speak truths, yet guilty because I did the very same thing…I did a bit of damage at the Saks Friends and Fam sale ;( but I felt really good afterwards 🙂 ayayay

    xo Carlina

  • Brooke

    I love this post! It’s so true—I find myself shopping wayyy more often than I need to. That’s what I get for perusing fashion blogs all day! haha. Yes, when something is rediculously priced, I try to find a similar, less expensive version. I’m around my messy nephews far too much to spend more than needed on a basic tee!

  • Cara Northcutt

    Can I tell you how much I love this post?! I believe in investment pieces but mix high and low because I am not going to go for broke over a passion of mine. Maybe that’s a little harsh but you know what I mean. Every time I see a higher end piece in my head I automatically go to what it could buy or do for Emma #momminds. LOVE this and you even more (I didn’t think that was possible) for writing it!

    xx Cara

  • Samantha

    AMEN!! This is such a great post. I’m constantly lusting over what other people have, and in turn find that I’m not even appreciating all the awesome stuff that I have. It’s a disease I think. Sometimes we just need this type of reality check. You’re kinda fantastic…even more after this post! 😉

  • fashionforgiants

    I think even just reading blogs can be difficult on your wallet and it’s magnified when you’re a blogger. Sometimes it can make you feel as if you need to keep up with the Joneses; it was especially hard for me when I first started. Now that I’ve been blogging a couple of years though, I think I am able to resist the lure of buying everything another blogger has on.

  • kitschy

    Thoughtful post. I’ve definitely felt that pressure or “need” to shop because something will make me feel beautiful or it’s “blog worthy” — and “blog worthy” sounds like such a b.s. thing for me to say. I think it’s easy to fall into the allure of a beautiful image or harder to resist the temptation.

    At the same time, I think after getting some perspective and reflection on the subject after blogging for a few years, it’s easier to resist the urge. And yes, I also don’t want to spend gobs of money on passing fantasies. If I don’t remember it a day later, then I don’t really want it.

  • Dani Shapiro

    Preach, girl.

  • Donna

    I am beyond obsessed and grateful for such a thoughtful post BA! I couldn’t agree more on everything you touched on. There are times I think I need everything and that I get stressed I’m not being ‘on trend’ etc for the blog but then to your point, happiness comes from the things that don’t cost money and I try to remind myself of this. So grateful to have such a thoughtful gal in my corner! You’re amazing, thanks for writing such a thoughtful post!


  • elle

    A very thoughtful post that is refreshing to read! I think it is important to keep perspective in all of our endeavors: with marketing as powerful a it is , it is important for us each to how what we like to wear, how much we can afford , and what makes us happy .
    Thanks for sharing this!
    XX, Elle

  • bp

    I just found your blog today via Social Beauty Co! This is a nice gateway post for me into your blog because it lets me see that you are a thoughtful consumer. There are many fashion bloggers out there and I honestly don’t read too many because I can’t determine what is real and what isn’t in their worlds. You seem very real. Thanks for sharing!

  • Lust for Leather

    Amazing post! I totally agree! When I first started blogging, I thought people wouldn’t take me seriously because I didnt have clothes from the big designers, or I wasn’t spending $1000 dollars on jeans. But then I realized that there is a way to look stylish on a budget and I won’t let anyone discourage me!

    Once again Amazing Post!

  • Courtney

    This is a great post!(: omgosh,I never thought of it that way.and THANK GOODNESS I’m not the only one who feels the need to smack a blogger on top of the head if I hear one more talking about how $600 sunglasses are her ‘must have’,$150 tank,etc. when you could get one just as cute,but 1/4 of that price. Most of my stuff I find thrifting,but you don’t even have to do that to get affordable cheap clothes(: and thanks for recognizing all the stress,some of the pressures of fashion blogging way on my mind alot,and I DO find myself comparing-this was a great reminder(: Glad I found your blog(:

  • Stacy G

    Really good post! The wine thing is so true. Things inevitably get ruined. Especially if your a momma! Love the look for less option! That is my way of life lol. Even with home stuff. I’ll be a DIYer for life!

  • Dana Frost

    It’s so important to keep perspective! I can totally relate and definitely have had those moments. As a fashion blogger we all inevitably follow some of the big name bloggers who are sporting the high end designers and it’s easy to get wrapped up in that. If I ever get tempted, I ask myself, “would I rather have this ONE bag or take a vacation with my husband?” All about perspective 🙂

    Thanks for sharing!

    Dana @ The Closet Confessional

  • Whitney @ To Live & Diet in L.

    I’m so glad you decided to address this issue. This is one of the main reasons I stopped reading a lot of fashion blogs. I just can’t relate to people who spend thousands of dollars on one outfit. That’s just not the world I live in. It’s even more irritating when you realize that most of these people aren’t even paying for their outfits. That’s why I love blogs like yours, where you bring style down to a relatable level.

    Your other point here is a very good one too. Clothes won’t ultimately make you happy (although if you read fashion blogs enough, you may be tricked into believing they will). This is true in the health/fitness blogging world too, and I often fall into that trap. “If only my arms were a little more toned…or I had a six pack, maybe I’d be happier?” I have to take a step back and realize that comparisons are unproductive and harmful, and that true happiness comes from within – not what your wearing or how hard your stomach is. xo

  • Lizzie

    BA This post is truly amazing!! I echo the sentiments of the other girls here on the comment thread– always feeling the need to “keep up” with current trends (as if spending $1000s of dollars on a new bag every month is trendy!!) can be exhausting and almost defeating to an every day woman. Really proud of you for bringing this to light! I have a feeling you are about to have a lot more new followers after this post 🙂 Miss you, KW, and Harlowe! xoxoxo

  • Rebecca Hanover

    Love this. Thanks for being refreshingly honest! xox

  • Caity @ Moi Contre La Vie

    Such a great post. Such good points. I stopped following alllll the big name a because it got so unbelievably ridiculous – You really think YSL bags, Chloe boots & Celine sunnies are normal!??