Hey. Some time ago in my Fashion section, I published a list of all fashion sites that have been collaborating with me over the years on many different fashion programs. I described each program, website, how we first started the collaboration method, and many other details about each of them so I would recommend checking out those PROs of being a fashion blogger before you check these CONs I’m about to share with you. Fashion blogging is not always fun.
Nor I nor any other fashion bloggers talk much about the struggles connected to working as a fashion blogger.
We’re all probably too thrilled to be considered fashion bloggers in the first place. So honored to work with fashion brands and even earn money doing something we’re passionate about. I’m so so grateful for all of the opportunities I got. It’s so unbelievable that I’m doing what I do and I wouldn’t change it for the world.
But it’s not all fun and games as we make it look like on the internet.
The reality of being a fashion blogger and fashion blogging or any other blogger comes with many struggles.
Such as writer’s block.
What do you say about each particular fashion trend, individual item, or brand that would capture your opinion without being too subjective or too objective, negative or too positive?
How many ways are there to describe a dress without repeating yourself?
What can you say about a brand that sucks but is paying you well?
You gotta edit your opinion to be what the companies want to hear rather than your honest thoughts. Suddenly it turns into promotion instead of a fashion blogging. You do what the companies tell you to. Share what they want you to. At the time they need you to. This is what I hate the most about the thing I love – you become a sell-out.
Can anyone blame you for doing your best, trying to provide for yourself?
If someone said to you ” Hey I’ll give you money if you say you like my product“. Wouldn’t you do it?
If you’re not a full-time blogger and you have some other day job or you even study like I did it’s so hard to find spare time to blog. It’s not like all blogging requires is to type down words in one sitting and hit publish. You have to come up with a topic. Think about what you’re gonna write about. Choose photographs. If you do a review of fashion items you gotta take photographs wearing the item and try to make the item look as good as possible. Not always as easy as it might sound. You gotta edit your final text. Proofread and publish but that’s not the end. You gotta promote your article. Gotta put yourself out there. Share your work on your social media. Repeatedly.
It doesn’t really matter how good a writer you are if no one’s gonna read your work.
You don’t need readers and popularity for your own sake but because of constant emails from companies asking why you’re not trying harder? Why are your sale results not as good as they used to be? Why you’re not posting? What happened?
So, again and again, you’re defending yourself that you’re doing your best and you just can’t force your readers to buy the product you’re promoting if they’re simply not interested. It makes me feel so miserable and annoyed with the companies that expect immediate results.
The language barrier is also a huge problem.
Not from my side as I think I speak English pretty well for my second language – but many stores are based in China and other related countries. Sometimes I have a hard time understanding their emails.
There is this one store that kept messaging me for collaboration for over 2 years now and every time they send me just the inviting message. I want to accept the collaboration so badly I even send out the codes for them to set up but I never got a reply message. The only inviting message again and again.
It was a new opening japan style store so I guess they don’t know how to collaborate with bloggers yet.
Also, I receive so many messages from starting up stores asking for an explanation of how fashion programs work. I try to help but again the language barrier is a problem.
Lack of communication from companies sites is so annoying and unprofessional and the main reason why I ended some collaborations. Sometimes websites change email addresses or blogger collaboration staff changes and they don’t even bother telling you.
You can’t always trust sites being honest in your earings. There are sites that allow you to see your sale or traffic results personally. But many just message you how much you earned and you have to trust them cuz you just don’t have any other option.
This con goes globally for most of the stores.
But let me tell you about all of the negatives of each site I’ve been collaborating with from my FASHION list:
Poppyapparel – My first Instagram collaboration.
Promised 10% off for my followers if the use my discount code Nat7x and 30% of the sale go to my pocket.
Reality – no idea how much I earned yet as I never heard from them again. No one ever replied to my emails so I stopped posting for them.
Heyahey – so young store they don’t have many products to offer.
Promised my followers 5% off with discount code renegade and 5% for me from each sale I make.
Reality – never made any sale as they had like 10 shirts in their selection and they message me like once a year saying they just uploaded some new clothes.
Bellatrixonline – ghotick store – very expensive.
Promised 10% off for my followers with code renegade and 10% for me from each sale and one product for me after 3 sales I make.
Reality – never made any sale I guess cuz when I messaged them asking about it they never replied so I postponed posting for them until they reply ( I would love to continue with this one as their products are really nice and something different from the rest of the stores).
Cuteharajuku and Womensfashion – I guess they are no longer valid.
Promised 10% off with discount code renegade and 10% for me.
Reality – they stopped replying like a year ago and even stopped uploading new items so I guess they went down but I can’t be really sure cuz they never let me know.
I actually made 2 sales for them and never got the money cuz I said it was ok if they pay me after 5 sales so I’ll get a bigger amount later on and they will also send me one item from their store of my choice but I guess that’s not gonna happen – so I stopped posting for them.
Banggood – like eBay or aliexpress.
Promised 10% for me from each sale.
Reality – rules changed and now I’m supposed to get pay by categories I sell in and I get like 4-8% from each sale. Their products are so cheap so I only get a few cents from a sale. I can withdraw money only after I earn at least 20$ and that could take a really long time. It’s not really worth my time. Shame cuz I really like that they offered many categories and not just clothes.
We also worked on the review program but then something changed and they refused to send me any more items. Well, they never replied when I asked for some.
Youvimi – japan style items.
Promised 10% off for my followers with code renegade and 10% for me.
Reality – I made 3 sales and actually got paid via PayPal but now for like 4 months no one is answering my emails. So I postponed our collaboration until I figure out if it’s still valid.
Yoins – I didn’t even bother to write an article about them.
Our collaboration took like 2 weeks and I got paid 1$ for each post I made for them. Got the money and I never heard from them again.
Promises vs reality – we were working on a blogger review program. Meaning I didn’t get paid in money but in clothes, I wrote about. I got like 1-2 pieces every month to write about. But after a year and a half rules changed and they couldn’t send me clothes anymore. So we switched to a basic sales program where I would get 10% off each sale. But after a few months, they stopped replying to my emails.
I found out that shein offers collaboration through shareasale so I rejoined the program via a different platform. Got new codes and I get 10% off each sale I made and I get regular emails from the site again. So I took this chance and asked why they stopped our first collaboration. I don’t know if they just didn’t understand what I was complaining about and I’m gonna put our email communication here cuz you just got to see that.
Here is what I wrote to shein :
and this is what they reply:
I mean was I not clear or what is going on? I reread both emails over and over again and I still don’t understand why shein stopped communicating with me or why are they blaming romwe.
Newchic – the main reason why I decided to write all of this down.
Recently I posted Newchic 4th birthday and yes it was sponsored. I got an email from new chic asking if I want to promote newchic anniversary in additional promotion besides our regular one. In exchange for NC product of my choice once the anniversary is over. I wrote down that article as it truly was a good sale deal and the items were really cheap. I added my track code NC send me to the links I shared on there. I promoted this post on my Tumblr blogs several times and my Instagram as well.
Because of google shortener I could track the traffic I brought to newchic myself and it was around 100 clicks per day.
When I messaged them about my final sale results they told me I got no sales and 20 clicks. I was so confused cuz I clearly saw much more clicks than just 20.
Turned out they send me the wrong tracking code and they couldn’t even admit their mistake!
Just told me to continue posting with new code and offered me a new “program” where they wanted me to post 40 posts for them for just 20$. That’s just ridiculous. When I started with NC I would earn 80$ a month but then the staff changed, rules changed, discount codes changed, like every other month. What was so upsetting cuz I was supposed to keep updating new end new codes every time they changed it? And apparently tracking codes changed too without bothering to tell me. Even though I send them the post before the anniversary to check if everything was ok with that.
Newchic behaved very unprofessionally.
Their products are cheap I admit that but they just don’t have good product photos and when something is not physically appealing to the customer there’s not a chance he’s gonna buy it no matter how cheap it is. Quality of products are adequate the prices – and that’s the truth I could not share with my audience when I was collaborating with them.
I feel bad for “talking dirty” about them now that I’m no longer working for them. But that’s the reality of working with them. They are so pushy. Kept bothering me all the time to post more and why I’m not posting more and why no one is buying their items.
Well, your items suck that’s why no one wants them.
I got 3 items from newchic – A black and white dress I wore only on this photoshoot cuz they came in too big. One pink top I didn’t even write about cuz it got stretched out almost immediately after receiving. And this Pink cardigan that is actually good and I stand by that review.
From the long list of fashion brands I’ve collaborated with, there are only 2 that never disappointed me and made fashion blogging a whole other experience.
Romwe – same program as Shein but at least they reply to my emails and offer my followers additional sales such as 5$ off 69+$ orders with my discount code Natalia and their products are quite good so I don’t have to lie in my romwe reviews.
(in recent weeks romwe was not answering my emails as well but I just don’t want to jump to conclusions jet)
Beautifulhalo – was my first ever store to collaborate with and it was number one ever since. I don’t think any website could ever beat the standards bh set for my fashion blogger collaborations ever.
Professional approach, always answer the emails next day, pay money on time, I can track results myself, transparency, good products, a great number of goods and aesthetically shot official product photos so it’s appealing for customers. Easy for me to promote them and make a sale.
Over the 4 years that I’ve been a fashion blogging I got the most positive experiences with beautifulhalo :
I love what I do but like everything in life, it has its ups and downs. Fashion blogging is not always fun but I wouldn’t change it for the world.
Even though it gets to my nerves sometimes but most of the time I just feel so blessed with these opportunities.
Thank you for your attention
Very informative post and you described all the challenges so well and in detail indeed …
What an excellent article! I don’t know much about women’s fashion but I DO know I could never do what you do.
I truly enjoyed and appreciate your transparency in this blog post. Thank you, I can totally relate to all these struggles as I am into fashion blogging as well.
Your English is brilliant. <3
Thanks for the perspective. You’re quite talented, which earns recognition, but that also brings pressure – and complications. I used to think, “It must be nice to have such an active following.” I still believe that, actually, but I never considered the price you pay for it. Your article illustrates the point well.
Worth reading post lovely
Oh so you’re a fashion girl
Nice post. Great enlightenment.
Sound like most of these places treat bloggers like crap.
I had no idea how difficult fashion blogging is!
Your post is extremely thorough! Lots of work! Well done.
Reblogged this on By the Mighty Mumford and commented:
WE DO APPRECIATE WHAT YOU HAVE TO GO THROUGH! <3