Returning to Blogging After An Unexpected Blog Break


When I first started Makeup Savvy way back in 2010 I wholeheartedly didn't expect to keep it up. Other than enjoying reading books I'd never been consistent with hobbies and my history of starting blogs and letting them fizzle out after a few months was strong. 

But beauty blogging was different, something stuck. 

It was still the early days of blogging, well in the beauty niche it was, and if you were blogging about makeup it was for the pure love of it. There was a sense of community, mainly on Twitter, and a rawness that meant a blog post didn't have to contain editorial-quality images or professional copy to be enjoyed.

Blogging was an outlet for myself and many other bloggers I knew at the time and most importantly it was fun! Content wasn't PR samples led (more on that later) or wrote in order to make money. It was just simple; take some badly lit photos with the flash still on, skip editing them and write up a review without any links what so ever. Done! 

Fast forward to today and there's a definite standard to aim for if you are still in the beauty blogging game, a lot aren't. With ever dwindling magazine sales across the board in the last 8 years I expected beauty and fashion blogging would pave the way for a more authentic kind of content - or, so I naively presumed.  

 And in some ways  it has. There are still bloggers that will give you unbiased reviews but even then it comes with the caveat of 'not too many negative reviews' and pairing it with images that look straight out of a magazine, something I'm guilty of trying to achieve.


So What Happened? 

While myself and many other bloggers were fine to meet that high standard (although I was finding I had experienced blogger burnout out from time to time), what happens if we are faced with an unexpected, erm , global pandemic?? Do we carry on with content like nothing has happened? 

The advertising company I'm with suggested that's exactly what I should do in a round about way. If I were to write content and include certain terms or words relating to said pandemic I would see less advertisers on my page as a result. 

The reality was to either keep on writing about makeup (while most people were at home in their pjs googling how long to quarantine their food shopping for) or not at all. I chose the latter. It was a no brainer for me. Makeup instantly felt such a trivial subject matter and I simply couldn't pretend it wasn't. 

And while it's hard to admit I also realised I'd lost my way when it came to blogging when PR samples inevitably dried up due to everyone in the beauty industry working from home. While I didn't rely on PR samples, my content was often moulded around them because I had a responsibility to feature and review the products I received, even when I haven't asked for them. 

Of course I'm fully aware this was and still is a first world problem to have but without PR-sent beauty products I was unsure what to write about, especially at the rate I was churning out blog posts.


Why Have I Come Back? 

For a few months into the pandemic I kept my hand in blogging in the hope normality would resume (Spoiler: it didn't) and I'd find some kind of inspiration and get back to it. But alas that didn't happen and my unofficial blog break turned into me feeling like I'd officially quit blogging. I even considered selling my blog! 

But in the past few months I've felt a shift in myself. I've been enjoying makeup again, I've FINALLY discovered ColourPop and I'm obsessed with Pat McGrath products, along with watching and reading more beauty related content. 

I've found myself wanting to share with you new beauty products I'm loving and to get some kind of writing routine back again. 

And if I'm being totally honest, I realised letting my blog's page views dwindle day-by-day was a waste of the past 10+ years of making this blog into something.

For the past however-many-years Makeup Savvy has become my main source of income and a perfect fit for my lifestyle which includes living with mild anxiety and some health issues, meaning an 'out of the house' job just wouldn't suit me. So I've decided I owe it to myself and the blog I've built up to give it another go but this time on my own terms. 


Moving Forward 

When I look back at the type and style of blog posts I wrote in the beginning they are far removed from what they are today. And while I cringe at the frequent spelling mistakes and badly taken images of my blog posts circa 2010 there are elements from them that I still enjoy. From random beauty hack posts to simple makeup product reviews. 


When writing blog posts for this blog I've never felt like I've been inauthentic or dishonest in any way. However going back to the subject of PR samples I do feel like my content became industry-led overtime, moulding my blog posts to fit products I was sent rather than what I was enjoying or buying. 

But there has to be a balance. Yes, PR samples are a huge benefit when you are writing 5 blog posts a week (80% of my income simply can't be spent on makeup, although I'd like it to be) but maybe the issue is with writing content at such a rate and not what I thought it was. 

Reflecting on this has been important and so I've decided worthwhile long-form content matters more to me than churning out a high volume of PR-led posts that feels throwaway. This means you can expect 1-2 posts a week on Makeup Savvy from now on which I feel is more than enough right now. 

No More Competing 

One thing I internally struggled with was imposter syndrome, especially when it came to writing skincare posts. While I've never claimed to be a skincare expert or guru I felt it was my responsibility to give out the best well-researched skincare advice and this felt like a lot of pressure - crazy, right? 

I'm simply a 30-something year old woman (must resist the urge to call myself a girl) that enjoys cleansing, buying new SPF's and gel-moisturisers that sometimes still uses the odd face wipe. Is this such a crime? Of course it's not. But did it use to feel like a crime in the beauty blogging community to mention the use of face wipes? Yes!

So while my face wipes usage isn't that much I feel compelled to write about my Top 10 favourites, I do want to be more honest when it comes to skincare. This will mean less thorough skincare posts, as they seem to zap my brain, and just simple honest reviews on how I find products work for my own skin type. 


More Drugstore Beauty Based Content 

With online shopping being the only way to shop over the past year, along with a dwindling bank balance I feel like I've fallen back in love with drugstore beauty brands. Platforms such as ASOS and Amazon have really impressed me with their ever expanding range of brands, along with Boots & Superdrug of course. 

So you can expect more drugstore products on my blog than ever before. Although we'll need to make an exception for my love of Pat McGrath and Charlotte Tilbury makeup products still. 

While there's a place for premium beauty products here and there it's simply unrealistic to feature full ranges of high-end products and express how you need them all in your life. I'm also aware that my original readership came for my savvy-ness for bargains, eBay finds and drugstore beauty reviews - this is what I plan to get back to.

While it may take some time to get back into the blogging loop I now feel a sense of direction that is being led by myself and what I feel like you and other readers may want to see - it already feels like the old days and this is something I'm welcoming. 

If you have made it this far, thank you so much for reading and for still visiting Makeup Savvy - I really hope I can make this blog back into something worth coming back to weekly and something I'm proud of.

Fee xo. 

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