It is common today for many bloggers, and honestly, regular people to receive items for free in exchange for an honest review on the product/item, or to tell others about it. What is not so common though, is people discussing how they obtained the items or if a recommendation was required (not simply a review, but actually endorsing the product). When I first started reading blogs and watching YouTube videos, I suspiciously noticed they all sounded a lot like commercials. Not just the reviews, but the entire videos and blog posts! Digging deeper, I learned a lot of interesting things and I wanted to share my policy on disclosure and what I plan to do with my blog, and how that can effect what I am able to review.
I never want to sound like a commercial. Ever. I love being a product nerd, and as a makeup junkie sometimes I have to curb my habit and focus on priorities. It happens. Before I even started blogging, I had Yelp and Amazon and Facebook groups to share my opinions on products and services, I always felt it was a disservice for people trying to purchase something not to know anything about it other than what was told to them by the company or people trying to sell it, and I still feel that way today, even from a business stand point.
No ONE brand can bring you the best of everything, it just isn’t happening. Many of us associate a brand as good and will buy many products simply because they are from a brand we like, but we all know some of those products end up returned or unused because they just didn’t work as well as we hoped. That’s ok. There are also many brands that produce similar items, like lipstick, and they’re ALL good. That’s ok too. In the blogger/vlogger world though, when a company chooses to support (SPONSOR) you they expect you to fully endorse their brand and only their brand and in some cases, not doing so can lead to legal action. While I would love to make money blogging, and receive thousands of dollars in free items, the reality is I am not going to rave about a product that sucks or does not perform well for me or does not live up to its advertising. What companies fail to remember, and people never forget is that what works for someone, may not work for someone else! We are all not fit into the same mold, we all have different skin types, eye shapes, skin textures, skin colors, etc. it is IMPOSSIBLE for any single one product to fit the needs of every person on this planet! Get over it and accept that one blogger or ten out there may not like your product, it happens.
With that being said, often when a blogger writes a negative review about an item or a company, other companies will notice. Some may decide not to work with someone in case they might not like their product, and will choose others who have proven to rave about everything they get, or always have good reviews and never any bad ones, but to me that is dishonest. That is not reality, there are times when we simply do not like something, and if that happens with me I will be sure to let everyone know about it. Some products are great and something like packaging can make it dud, in sharing my opinion I want others to make their own choices about what they love and want to buy. Not because I shoved it down their throat. Products sent to me for review, will be reviewed, but all reviews will always be my own opinion. Good or bad. Unless someone is paying me to write an actual review for an item they sent me, I will not be disclosing how I obtained each and every item. I want the focus of every review to be about the product and how it works, as it should be!