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With beauty blogging picking up as a potential career, we talk to blogger Neha Aggarwal on what the life of a beauty blogger is like, and how she perceives the glut of products available today.
Over the years, the perception of makeup has altered, and many women use makeup as per their choice, and not due to societal pressure. Regardless of which side you fall on, the beauty industry is as booming as ever.
Beauty blogging, the latest trend online, has been receiving millions of views on all social media platforms. Beauty bloggers are giving makeup tutorials, beauty product reviews and beauty tips to all their viewers. It has become a big industry, and through the rise of social media, cosmetic companies have found more routes to profitability.
The life of a beauty blogger seems really glamorous and fulfilling. In order to give us a realistic picture of what a beauty blogger actually does, I spoke to 23-year-old Delhite, and full-time beauty blogger, Neha Aggarwal. Neha Aggarwal blogs at Beautyandskinn.
When and why did you start blogging about makeup?
I started it in December 2016, because even after doing my post-graduation, I didn’t want to do a 9-5 job. Education was something I just did for namesake. I always wanted to become a fashion designer but due to certain personal reasons I couldn’t do it.
Whilst I was doing my graduation, I did a short makeup course and that made me interested in makeup. Even after completing that course and doing my post-graduation, makeup was something I always had fun doing with myself as well as on others. It gives me a sense of satisfaction, and I know that there is something that I enjoy doing. People around me also appreciated my work and hence, I started blogging because there is nothing more fulfilling than doing what you love as your profession.
There is an argument that by promoting beauty products, companies are promoting sexism. Do you think it’s true?
I think in a way is true, because companies whilst encouraging women to be confident and prove to everyone that they are beyond looks, they reiterate that by using their product, they will appear more beautiful. Why do we have to use some beauty products to feel more confident? Why are looks an important aspect to a woman? We have much more to us than that.
What is your opinion about the notion that makeup is meant to hide visible flaws, indicating that women should be flawless, but men don’t have to do so?
Makeup, in my opinion should be a choice not a societal pressure. When it comes to being flawless, really? Who is flawless nowadays in this polluted environment? Maybe only newborn babies. It is okay to wear makeup as long as it is something that you like or want for yourself, and not because somebody else thinks you should hide your flaws.
I personally like makeup and yes, it does make you look flawless but I don’t use makeup on daily basis, only for certain events. Also, I don’t do it to please anybody else. Our society does judge women on how they look, but not men because they think men have more important roles that goes beyond looks. But women in most cases are being judged on how they look, irrespective of what they are capable of.
Now, there is a rise of male beauty products, do you think that men have begun to pay attention to their looks as much as women?
Oh definitely yes, men have started taking care of their skin and looks, more then we women do now. I, myself, have men in my life who take more time to get ready than I do. They pay special attention to their hair.
In my opinion, social media and beauty advertisements are the main reason for this. Men are getting more aware about the trends and products. Hence, they have started following trends as well, are shopping as much as women, and have increased their visits to the salon, for purposes other than haircuts and shaving.
Some bloggers are often accused of giving positive reviews of products because they are paid for doing it, and not because they actually like the product. Do you think this is true and unethical?
It is true to some extent. Many people do that but not all beauty bloggers are the same. Some do it for financial profit and some do it for collaborating with the brand to get more recognition. Although it should not be done, it is their choice of what they want to give their followers or subscribers. I don’t support these biased reviews and consumers are very smart and they don’t rely on just one review unless they have had positive experience with that blogger’s opinions in the past. So, bloggers and in general, reviewers should not do biased reviews just because they are paid to do so. They have gained profits because of their subscribers and regular viewers, that companies now want to collaborate with them and sponsor them, so they should give back to their subscribers by reviewing honestly.
Do you think women need makeup to feel confident?
It depends on a woman’s own choice, I can’t generalise. Whether a woman is comfortable without makeup, or with makeup, it’s her choice because when a woman is satisfied how she looks, she can carry herself with grace anyways. But if using makeup can make her more confident than she already is, then she should use it.
However, if she is not satisfied with how she looks without makeup, it will make her conscious about her appearance, even when she is wearing makeup. So, its all about a woman’s individual personality and perception.
There are women who wear makeup, gain confidence and stop using makeup because they do not want to hide behind it either, like Alicia Keys.
So yes, makeup does make certain women feel more confident because when you look good, people pay attention to you. In response, you feel good about yourself. Women should wear and do whatever makes them feel content and confident. It doesn’t only apply to makeup.
Are there any affordable brands that you recommend to readers?
There are many affordable brands which provide quite promising products; some of my favourites which are easily available in India are Maybelline, L’Oréal, Colorbar, NYX and some internationally available affordable brands I like are Colourpop, wet n wild, Morphe, Makeup geek and RCMA.
Are there any do’s and dont’s the readers have to be aware of before shopping for beauty products?
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