Two can play this game…
Any self-confessed Blogger, Vlogger or Zoella fan will have most likely read Chloe Hamilton’s The Independent column on beauty vlogger, Zoe Sugg. Known to the Youtube world as Zoella, a name that Chloe says is ‘irritatingly Disney-fied’ yet how ironic that as I read this a Disneyland ad banner frames her own words. Zoe has over six million subscribers and her online success has quickly catapulted her from Wiltshire-born beauty blogger to the Vlogosphere’s biggest Superstar. Unfortunately, with fame comes criticism, something I’m sure Zoe, to some extent, will be struggling with as she surfs the proverbial wave she is currently riding.
So, when I saw a link to Hamilton’s article on my Twitter feed last night, it took me a while to click on it. Why? Because I knew I was giving in to the idea of media outlets cashing in by attacking trending figures of the moment. Even though I gave The Independent one view, I feel my lasting and final opinion after reading Hamilton’s one-sided vendetta against Zoella overshadows this factor. As I’m sure most of Zoe’s followers would agree with, it was an uneducated insult on someone who has actually, as a fellow blogger and twenty-something girl, inspired and positively influenced me in various ways.
With feminism currently somewhat at the forefront of media, it was inevitable that Hamilton would tap into this subject as another trending-topic traffic booster. She attempts to portray Zoella as an encourager of ‘perfect beauty’ due to her makeup and fashion tutorial videos and believes this discredits Zoe’s view that young girls should fret less about their appearance. As soon as I read this, I instantly thought of a recent vlog that Zoe uploaded. She was having a bad skin day however she hadn’t covered up her skin with makeup and she made it clear to her viewers that it was important to feel comfortable in their own skin, with or without imperfections, and pushed for girls to showcase their bare faces on Instagram with the hashtag ‘#nomakeupandwhat’.
As someone who suffers from acne, this positive message helped me in knowing that I am not alone and that it is important to not let myself be defined by my bad skin but by who I am as a person. If this isn’t a positive act of feminism, then what is? I can tell you what isn’t. Hamilton humouring Zoe’s appearance in the opening line of her article. How can she begin to talk about feminism when she thinks it is acceptable to insult another girl’s appearance? Feminism is about supporting and building others up, not knocking others down to try and prove a point that, if I’m honest, reeks of jealousy.
As a young woman, I believe that fashion and beauty empowers females and is a tool that should be used to enhance women’s confidence and identity. I’m sure both Zoe and Chloe would agree with this comment as, let’s face it, it’s just common sense. So, why is Hamilton giving in to causing controversy to increase her viewing stats?
As I am a fashion blogger who aims to carve a career in writing, Chloe Hamilton should be someone I look up to as an aspirational figure. A role model, if you like. However, if becoming a successful writer means I have to slander someone else’s success by claiming false and ignorant comments within my work, then it is something I frankly don’t want to aspire to. It is this thought that I would like to focus on to finalise this post. I am disappointed to see a female from my generation, who shares similar career goals as myself, attempting to climb the career ladder by spouting vicious criticism. This is an anti – feminist act. Let’s hope she sees sense after she experiences the lash back. Oh wait, maybe not…