When I reached out to Agnes Li. from Pinkbox Makeup for advice on jumping into beauty blogging. She said one thing that really caught my eye:

“If you are shy about chatting with others, maybe take a baby step and just start commenting on your favorite blogs more often. Try to make your comments meaningful (showing you actually read their post and not just to advertise your own blog) and you will soon find out for yourself how lovely our blogger community is :) Slowly, you’ll start to build a relationship with many people (both followers and fellow bloggers) and you may even become good friends with some! Along the way, im sure you’ll find many others who are just like you :) trying to spread beauty around to those who dont have as much confidence.”

Of course – I already followed a number of beauty and fashion blogs, commenting sporadically. But when I made it a part of my day to check my blogger for updates and to really focus I began to pick up on some “tools of the trade.” There are different tips, tricks and resources that bloggers can make use of to expand on their slowly budding empires writing. For my fellow newbie bloggers (or experienced ones looking for new things to try!) here’s what I’ve found so far.

Business2Blogger

Provided that a blogger is willing to follow the FTC rules of disclosure (ie: tell people certain posts were sponsored, if you were paid, if you got the product for free, yada yada.) Business2Blogger provides a fun link between bloggers and (duh) businesses. They send out an email every few days to bloggers featuring campaigns that business want to begin. Bloggers sign up and the businesses select bloggers for their campaigns. It’s not always about who has the most Google Friends or hits (though it helps!) so small blogs have a chance. Oh, did I mention it’s free?

BzzAgent

This is how I got the CoverGirl stuff! BzzAgent is a word-of-mouth agency; companies hire them to collect people to try out samples/services and then review them. They accept pictures, tweets, facebook posts, blog posts and reviews on the BzzAgent site itself; so you don’t need your own blog to start. It’s completely free too!

Birchbox  (US), Loose Button (US and Canada), Glossybox (UK)

For my fellow beauty bloggers, the above three are like holy grails of awesome. Each is a service that for $10USD (Birchbox and Loose Button) or £10.00 (Glossybox) per month, will send you a box of PREMIUM samples. These are usually travel-sized versions of various products. But unlike regular samples; these really tend to be good. You can get NARS, Murad, Clinique, too Faced, Dior, Chanel and many many other famous brand’s samples. Each sample will usually last for about a week – just enough time for you to review the product (and buy it if you like it!) Originally these companies were developed for discerning women who didn’t want to blow their money on a luxury product without having tried it – but as a blogger, their low price can be a lifesaver. After all, beauty blogging is expensive business!

Other Bloggers

Yeah that’s right. If the lovely Miss. Li wasn’t enough proof for ‘ya, trust me when I say that your fellow bloggers are INVALUABLE sources of information. You can ask them for advice, you can read their blogs for ideas, you can scan their sidebars for OTHER blogs to read. And networking? Networking is a huge tool for bloggers. It can be as simple as a GFC exchange to something interactive like Guest Posting. Either way, never  underestimate the power of the fellow blogger.

:3 Well that’s all for now.

<3 EA