I have always had an Instagram account, from way back when it first became a ‘thing’. I never cared about what I posted back then, goofy pictures of my friends, my cats, just any old thing I fancied posting. I didn’t give it a second thought. And I LOVED it!
When I first qualified as a makeup artist last summer and I was gaining professional photographs for my portfolio, I decided to set up a separate Instagram account to promote my business. I used this platform to network with other local makeup artists, hairstylists, photographers, models etc. I posted a mixture of beauty blog content, makeup looks on myself as well as pro photos from shoots and behind the scenes shots. And for a while I was happy with this, then something happened a couple of months ago, I got an itch. I wanted to branch out with my platform, and my blog. I had the urge to post more than just about makeup (although this is still a passion of mine). Following a number of other bloggers on my professional Instagram account, I wanted to join in the more general blogging game. I wanted to post about fashion and lifestyle, and I wanted to branch out the content on this blog too.
All of a sudden I felt very trapped, it was the most stupid and most confusing thing ever. I was always under the impression that social media on the whole was meant to be a place of escapism, a place to be free, to be whoever you want, to express yourself… and there I was feeling like I had to stick within the strict guidelines I had set for myself on my small Instagram account. Should I change up the content to my makeup account? Should I just not bother with blogging at all?
I was racking my brains to come up with a solution. When I realised that my makeup business account should stay just that, my professional platform. And I decided to create another separate blogging account where I could post more freely about my blog and other topics other than just beauty. Although I feel like this has allowed me to regain some freedom reminiscent of when I first started Instagraming back in the day, I can still feel restrained from time to time.
It’s very easy to feel like you need to follow the rules with Instagram blogging in order to be successful. Flat lays on marble backgrounds, white themes, keeping up with the latest trends… it’s hard to display individuality when you feel you’re expected to fall within the paint by numbers ideals of what a blogger should post. It can be suffocating at times, and this is not what it should be about.
Now don’t get me wrong, I still love Instagram – and all the inspiration it has to offer! It’s a great place to meet people, find out what’s going on in your local community and generally keep up to date on basically anything and everything. But displaying your life this way for the world to see, whilst simultaneously not try to care what people think can be difficult (for me at least!)
So I am writing this in the hope I can encourage you as bloggers, or just general Instagram users, to simply unapologetically be yourself. Post content you love. Post content you’re passionate about, even if you don’t think it will appeal to the masses – it will appeal to someone somewhere. Swear if you want to. Don’t feel the need to airbrush. No one is perfect, and that’s what I feel the blogging lifestyle can sometimes strain itself so hard to portray. Life isn’t all healthy home cooked meals presented under a veil of ‘Juno’ or cocktails at sunset under the disguise of ‘Lark’. If you can’t afford the latest belt everyones wearing or the latest pair of shoes that are on trend – Oh well! Dig up that old pair you love dearly and rave to the world about why you love them and why they’re so amazing. Passion is what people want, not carbon copies. Do you, and be true to yourself ✌🏼
Does any of this ring true with you? I would love to hear your thoughts on this!
Until next time
Photos taken by the lovely Sophie