A lot of things have changed since I filled out the “What do you want to be when you grow up?” booklet in the fourth grade. Back then there were a plethora of mommy, vet, doctor, and Ninja Turtle Crayola-scrawled-answers plastered up on Mrs. Brown’s wall. Yours truly, always wanting to be the cool girl, wrote “Actress but also Marine Biologist.” I was never one to limit myself.
It wasn’t until high school or early college that I realized there are designated careers for cool, hot girls, and unfortunately, I was never going to fall into that category. I could never figure out how to rock the pencil skirt and button down look, so pharmaceutical sales rep was out of the question. I’m not attached enough to my phone or any sort of communicative device, so I would never work in PR. And I didn’t want to become a complete RomCom stereotype with the whole “writer” thing so I pretty quickly ruled out working at a women’s magazine.
But there is one new, shiny, hot girl career that really grinds my gears every time I see a photo of her perched on her perfectly made, white comforter clad, bed clutching an artisan latte in an equally as white mug. And that is the minimalist blogger.
You know the blogger I’m talking about. She’s what other bloggers who make lists like “12 Lifestyle Blogs To Drool Over” (but the subtext of the title is “12 Lifestyle Blogs That Are So Perfect There Isn’t Enough Tide-To-Go In The World To Make You Like Them So You Might As Well Shoot Yourself In The Face”) go on and on about. She’s described as “effortless” and “whimsical” and “dreamy”. Basically, she’s posing in rooms with accented brick walls and succulents meticulously arranged near her $1200 rocking chair and is simply on the internet to make you feel bad about your own shortcomings.
If you had told me all I had to do to make $15,000 per Instagram was wear a lot of horizontal stripes and get a Canon EOS 70D to take photos of myself looking away from the camera in profile, I never would have wasted 5 years (shout out for that victory lap) in college. I would have been spending my high school graduation money on getting perfect skin, hair extensions, and accumulating a bunch of boyfriend jeans. I would have been perfecting my “candid poses” so that when my friend/photographer snapped a photo of me on my terrace, drinking tea, and laughing. I would inspire hundreds of thousands of other girls looking at the photo to become incredibly insecure in their inability to be me.
How are your Lauren Conrad almost-no-curl-curls holding up in the rain? How do you evidently have time to always iron every piece of clothing you own and not just throw them in the dryer with some ice cubes and hope for the best? Why is a picture of you posing in a Zara outfit I would never be able to find in store (seriously, have you been inside a Zara? It’s the chaos of a Forever 21 for triple the price.) on an oversized piece of driftwood captioned with 300 or so words about “living as your best self” sending me into a rage spiral that can only be cured by drinking a whole bottle of wine and consuming an entire Trader Joe’s pizza?
The dishonesty in the minimalist blog is abundant, but I can’t stop myself from scrolling. How many Mr. Clean Magic Erasers does she have underneath her sink to keep her counters and walls so white? And as for that dark blue (Sorry, sapphire)velvet couch she’s always photographed reading various memoirs on? How many $3.99 lint rollers from Target is she hoarding to keep it debris-free? Especially after she promoted “Adopt! Don’t shop!” and came home with a maltipoo? The logical side of my brain knows that her real life isn’t as filtered and stain-free as the pictures would make you believe and that her gloriously arranged messy bun probably fell the second she laughed for real instead of posing with her “picture laugh” but the reality is: I hate her because I’ll never be her.
It’s not her fault entirely. I just wish she’d say “Madewell paid me to do this,” or “Lush gave me all of these bath bombs for free,” or “I spent 45 minutes arranging these pillows, it made my boyfriend and me bicker to the point of me almost crying, and my dog peed inside twice before we got that picture,” so that we’d be able to keep everything in perspective. I’m never going to look as good in hats as she is, or keep track of that many tiny rings, but maybe we’d be able to co-exist a little more peacefully if she told me her side bangs she’s “just trying” were actually covering an adult zit she woke up with yesterday morning.
Lifestyle bloggers are the future and here to stay, so it’s just something I have to accept. There are a lot of hot girl careers I’m never going to be a part of and hers is one of them. And frankly, I’m way more in the camp of “how many weird antique mall things can I get into this studio?” than that of the couple who live in an apartment that only needs six pieces of furniture inside to feel complete (and not own a television).
But on my way to acceptance, do you think she’ll help me figure out if I should use Amaro or Valencia for this photo of my farmers market haul? .
Image via Shutterstock