How To Start a Makeup Blog

Starting a blog is one of the best ways to build an audience, get your ideas out into the world, and possibly make some (or a lot) of money while doing what you love. Everyone has different reasons for beginning a blog and different goals in mind when they do so. Your personal path will dictate some of the choices you make along the way. One thing that is true for everyone, however, is that the only way to succeed is to get started.

Taking that first step can be a huge challenge, but by the end of this article, you should have the tools you need to feel confident and prepared to start your makeup blog today.

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This article is a great place to learn the strategy of a makeup blog. If you want step-by-step instructions on how to start your own makeup blog, check out our free blogging course. 

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What Is Your Blog About?

Since you are reading this, there is a strong chance you already know what you want your blog to be about - makeup! But knowing your topic is only the first step towards building a successful blog. To really get somewhere, you need to know what you want to accomplish specifically. Do you want a blog about eye makeup? A "makeup for beginners" blog? A makeup blog for teens?

You need to know what kind of blog you want - really want, in detail - to truly focus and make progress. Having a clear, targeted topic will also make you stand out from the competition.

There’s a quote that fits this situation perfectly:

"If you try to be everything for everbody, you will be nothing to no one."

Establish Your Niche

When creating a new blog, you need to find your niche. This is the corner of the market that you have the most knowledge about, the place you can establish yourself as an absolute authority. If you try to take on Cosmopolitan right out the gate, you will have an uphill battle ahead of you - one that will leave you frustrated and defeated.

Your goal should be to find a niche that is broader than “makeup”, but narrower than “black mascaras”. A niche too broad will be difficult to make your mark in, while a niche too narrow will not give you enough to write about - or leave you with too small an audience to maintain your blog. 

Some examples of niche makeup blogs are:

  • Skincare-Focused Makeup Blog - The Anna Edit
  • Makeup Transformation Blog - Beauty is Boring
  • Environmentally-Friendly Makeup Blog - The Beauty of It Is

Name Your Blog

Once you’ve found your niche, it’s a great time to start brainstorming a name for your blog. You’ll want to pick a name that’s brandable and available. Use our domain name tool to check if your name is available. If it is, scoop it up before someone else gets to it first.

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Finding Your Audience

Having a good sense of who is going to be reading your blog is one of the best ways to know what type of content to create, how to shape it, and, ultimately, how to grow your following. With a clear understanding of your niche, understanding your audience should come more naturally.

Finding your target audience - the people you want hanging out on your blog - isn’t only statistics and demographics. It requires a deeper understanding of who these people are and what they want. Your target audience is the people you’re writing to when you write your blog.

Whatever the core focus of your blog is going to be, you need to consider who you want to read it so that you can determine your content and your tone. Are you writing for individuals who have no idea how to apply makeup, or are you writing for an audience that has plenty of experience? Knowing your audience is key.

Create a Persona

One way to understand your audience is to create a persona of your perfect target audience member. This essentially means creating a mock-up of the ideal person you hope to reach with your blog.

Here is an example of a target audience persona:

Sarah Sanderson Persona

Having a persona for your perfect audience member helps you to visualize and understand who you are writing for and provides important direction to your content.

Be Your Own Persona

Another popular way to find your perfect target audience is to be your own persona. Many of the best products and services come from scratching your own itch. It’s possible you’ve searched for the perfect makeup blog to read, came up short, and decided to create it yourself. This makes you the perfect audience member for your own blog.

This can be a great strategy for creating highly effective content. If you’ve noticed a meaningful omission in blog content, chances are you are not alone. By writing personally satisfying content you are likely to reach an audience in search of the same things.

Where Is Your Audience Hanging Out?

No web content exists in a vacuum. While you should strive to create uniquely entertaining content for your blog, your target audience is almost certainly already out there reading other blogs, engaging on specialized forums, and using social media. Finding the sites where your audience already mingles is a great way to discover what topics they are most interested in, what language they are using, and what valuable content you can add to that mix.

Some examples for your makeup blog may include:

  • Allure.com
  • Kanebo.com
  • Elle.com
  • Glamour.com

Visiting these sites is also a great way to begin engaging with your audience before your blog has even gone live. Jump into conversations on forums and in comments sections and get to know the people you’ll be writing for. This is a great, organic way to build relationships and direct people to your blog in its early days. Sharing your passion with like-minded people will make them more excited and passionate about supporting you in your blogging endeavor.

How Will You Present Your Work?

Traditionally, when most people think about a blog they picture written content on a page. However, there are several different ways to present your ideas on your blog, depending on your subject matter and target audience. Every blog will thrive with different formats, so it’s important to think carefully about how to best showcase your content before you start.

There are several effective methods of presenting the material on your makeup blog. They include:

Evergreen Articles

As the name suggests, evergreen articles are composed of content that lasts. These articles are designed to have a long shelf life and continue drawing readers to your blog over time. They are typically long-form, text-based articles that delve more deeply into a particular topic.

The evergreen content you create should focus on topics that you know your audience will come looking for - especially those that might not know about your blog yet. These topics should have some constancy to them, like basic makeup fundamentals. While eye shadow may change in composition over the decades, and styles certainly change, the basics of how to apply product remain fairly consistent. Focus on giving people informative, quality articles that you know people will search for far into the future.

Videos

While the video format is not new, the explosive growth of YouTube and the advent of new and innovative video-based tech like Snapchat and TikTok have shown the true power of video as an online medium. While you may think that creating video is much more difficult and expensive than writing your content, you have access to all the technology you need to make high-quality video content right on your smartphone.

Makeup blogs are ideal for video content. You can definitely give clear instructions through text and images about makeup, but nothing compares to videos where you see someone actually doing what you want to do. You can create tutorials about different types of makeup and different makeup styles, depending on your niche, and create a whole library of videos. Try not to stress too much about making perfect videos at the beginning. Give yourself time and practice and you will get better.

News-type Articles

News articles or other “announcement” type content can be a great way to gather new readers. One benefit of news content is the short-term but powerful increase in search volume during an event. While this bump may be temporary, it can be a great tool for grabbing new readers who end up coming back for more.

Writing about current events or new happenings also means there will typically be less competition for readers. Other blogs and media sources are all getting the information as it develops. Since the base of knowledge available is smaller, this gives you a good opportunity to add your own flavor to the article.

The downside to news-type articles is that they tend to lose popularity much more quickly than evergreen content. While the interest for an event may be very large one day, the next day people may already be moving on to the next shiny object.

There is always something newsworthy happening in the world of makeup. You might be looking forward to a new product coming out, or you may be fascinated with an emerging trend. The simplest way to find news topics is to follow where your interests lie within the sphere of your niche. You probably already keep an eye out for news about makeup - now you just need to write some blogs about what you find in your research.

Image-heavy Content

While most people expect to be reading when they visit a blog, image-heavy content can be very appealing and break up your text-focused posts to keep people’s attention. Depending on the topic of your post, displaying multiple images per page on a single subject can give your audience a better sense of what you are trying to convey.

While some topics may take to images very easily, like a car blog or a celebrity gossip site, others may require some deeper thinking to make this strategy work.

A makeup blog is a perfect place for image-heavy content. You can write how-tos and give demonstrations of different products and photograph your process, then post those photos on your blog. 

You can steadily improve your photography skills with practice as you record your various makeup projects. Eventually, taking photos and gathering images will just become part of your process. You know that you are going to need a lot of great images to make your blog stand out. As you research and plan each post, you can get the images you need to flesh out your content.

Mix and Match

Every good blog uses a variety of content delivery strategies to reach the widest possible audience. While you can expect to prefer one type of content over another, over time you should step out of your comfort zone and experiment with other content types to expand your skill set and reach more people. Try taking videos. Explore news-type content. You will come to feel comfortable with a variety of content types the more you push yourself to branch out.

How To Make Money From A Makeup Blog

One of the main reasons people start blogs is to generate some sort of profit. Whether you’re looking for a few hundred dollars per month or a job-replacing income, blogging is still an excellent way to make those dreams a reality.

There are a few great ways to make money from a makeup blog:

Display Ad Networks

Display ads are the simplest way for websites to generate any sort of income. Ad networks, like Google Adsense, are fairly simple to be accepted into, and implementation onto your site is streamlined and clean. If you’re just beginning to see some traffic to your blog and want to turn this into dollars, display ads are where most people start.

There are a few downsides to display ads, however. The first is that some feel they detract from the user experience on your blog. Most people have been to a site where large ads pop up and block the content in the middle of reading. This can be distracting, frustrating, and even drive people away from your blog. While it’s possible to clean up and control the type of ads you use, it can be a constant battle to balance effective ad placement with aesthetics and readability.

The other main downside is that they don’t pay a lot. These networks generally use a pay-per-click (PPC) model which, depending on the niche, can pay anywhere from $0.01 to $1.50 per click, most on the lower end.

While display ads are a great way to make your first dollars, you’ll want to make sure any negatives they bring are worth the profits they provide. Once you develop a solid following, you can consider moving on to more lucrative and effective profit-making options.

Affiliate Marketing

Affiliate marketing programs like Amazon Affiliate have become much more popular over the past few years, as they take the payment model from pay-per-click to cost-per-acquisition (CPA). This means you can refer as many users to an advertiser’s product as you want, but will only get paid when the user makes a purchase.

Both advertisers and publishers benefit from an affiliate marketing setup. The advertiser pays nothing until a sale is made and the publisher enjoys much higher commissions than the pay-per-click model.

There are numerous makeup-specific affiliate programs from various brands. You can pick and choose the brands that you like and those that fit within your niche. 

Some of the brands of cosmetics that offer affiliate programs include e.l.f. Cosmetics, Sigma Beauty, Benefit Cosmetics, BH Cosmetics, and more. The commission rates for cosmetic brand affiliate programs vary considerably, ranging from 4% all the way up to 15% or more. 

It can be tempting to participate in affiliate programs based on the commission you get, but in the long run, it is best to stick to brands and programs that you feel comfortable recommending to your audience. You will build a following over the coming months and years that trust you for your expertise, insight, and advice. Protecting that relationship should be a primary goal for as long as you have your blog.

Sell Digital Products

Digital products are an online entrepreneur's dream. You create the item once, then sell it as many times as you can, with little to no cost of reproduction. This means that you can scale your business to infinity.

Examples of digital products are:

  • Ebooks - A piece of writing, generally in PDF format. These can contain literally anything that your audience would want. They can either be true book-length all the way down to a few pages of content. Depending on your niche, audience, and subject, these can run from $1 to $100 per sale fairly easily.

  • Gated Content - This is content that is served on your website just like any other article, except that is behind a “paywall”. If you are creating content that you don’t want to be released to anyone but your true followers, you have them sign up for an account on your site and charge them a subscription fee for access. Generally, authors charge anywhere from $5 to $200 per month for access to gated content.

  • Online Courses - If you can teach a skill that your audience wants to learn, you can create an online course to sell to them. These courses can be formatted in whatever way makes the most sense to you, but most nowadays are video courses. Online courses can sell from $10 to well over $10,000 per course, obviously depending on the subject matter and audience.

As a makeup blogger, you have many different options to create digital products for your audience. Probably one of the most lucrative digital products you can create is an online course. Depending on your niche, you could create an online course offering specific makeup advice and guidance, such as tutorials on all the different main types of makeup and how to use them. If you develop a quality course, you could easily charge $200 or more for it.

Sell Physical Products

Selling physical products is the original money-making strategy. You gather an audience that is hungry for something, you sell it to them, and everyone wins. You don’t have to be an inventor, designer, or manufacturer to sell products. Sites like Alibaba and AliExpress import already-made items into the United States and sell them for a markup.

The two main methods for the distribution of these items are: dropshipping and self-fulfilled.

Dropshipping is a method where you advertise a product on your site that you do not own. Once you make the sale, you inform the manufacturer, who will handle the shipping and handling to the end-user. While this is simple because you don’t have to worry about storing or shipping any items yourself, you’ll find that the margins can be quite slim.

Self-fulfilled sales are much more of a hands-on approach to sales. You buy the item from the manufacturer, store it, then ship it to the end-user once you have made the sale. While there is much more work involved, you’ll find that the margins per sale are much higher.

Selling products on a makeup blog becomes easier as you grow in popularity. At first, you may need to stick to products with a low barrier to entry - like branded journals, water bottles, and stationary - but eventually you could develop your own makeup line and sell it on your site and in stores.

While it can be very profitable when done well, selling products is not generally recommended for the beginner blogger. It’s best to secure an audience that you know will be receptive to the product before making a large investment in product development or acquisition.

Create A Service

Providing a service is another very basic money-making plan. If you can provide a service that you know your audience needs, you have a viable business on your hands.

Whether this service is delivered through one-on-one interaction with the user, through a piece of software that you develop, or by directly completing a task for the user, this is a great way to monetize your skillset and your blog.

The services you offer through your makeup blog should be based on your unique niche, audience demand, and your skills and experience. You could offer group seminars on how to apply makeup, one-on-one coaching, and other services that allow your audience to get personalized attention from you. 

You position yourself as an expert through your blog, which means you can charge a premium for your services. You will need to be careful about time management, however, because it is easy to overcommit yourself - particularly when your services are in high demand. In the end, it is your blog that drives your business, so be certain you leave enough time to keep your blog going strong.

Next Steps To Get Your Makeup Blog Started

Now that you have the strategies in place to build and grow your own blog, check out our free course: How To Start A Blog.

This course includes all the essentials on how to get your blog out of your head and onto its own website. Starting a blog is simple and inexpensive, so there’s no reason that you shouldn’t start today!

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