Wednesday, 23 November 2011

Handpicked Media Gets Social

This event on Monday 21st November was organised by Handpicked Media, a company which represents the best blogging talent in the UK, helping bloggers to promote their work, increase their traffic and secure the correct advertising and campaigns for each individual need. I was lucky enough to win a ticket for this event through a competition run by beauty blogger Jen from who was also part of the beauty panel on the day. I was extremely excited about the event as I am new to blogging and couldn't wait to meet fellow bloggers, many of whom I have been following for a long time.

The event was held at The Royal institute of British Architects near Oxford Circus, London and was a full day from 9am - 5am consisting of talks, advice and question and answer sessions. I will give you a quick summary of the day and what I learnt from it!

My official sticker for the event! Handy for meeting people and putting faces to blogs.

The day started with a chance to look around at some new make up collections from Bourjois and Shu Uemura who had their own stands and make up artists on hand. I loved the Bourjois eye pearls range which consisted of 5 small eyeshadows in a handy palette available in a range of colours.

Bourjois Eye Pearls rrp £8.99
(Illusion was my favourite shade which is the 2nd from the right which includes pinks and purples)

New Shu Uemura Holiday Collection- a collaboration with film director Wong Kar Wai which includes Drowning in Flames palette (centre) rrp £39.00 and Dance in Glitter premium false lashes (top left) rrp £26.00. Gorgeous collection with holographic details to reflect the work of the film director and beautiful shades to create the perfect party look this season.

A selection of perfumes to try! My personal favourites were Jimmy Choo and Elie Saab which I would highly recommend. We were given samples to take home and they are the perfect size for my handbag.

The first talk was with Garry from Why Communicate which dealt with the technical side of blogging and how to get the most out of your blog using the internet. His top tips were:

  • Understand your visitors - what do they want from a blog and why have they clicked onto yours?
  • Content is king - write honestly and enthusiastically on your chosen blog topics 
  • Engage in the blogging community - read, comment and link to other blogs
  • Review and optimise - what are people writing about this week? keep up to date with trends
  • Learn a little SEO - search engine optimization to improve visibility of your blog in search engines

I learnt a lot from this talk and Garry was great at explaining the usually difficult and confusing technology used for blogging and giving us step by step instructions on how to improve our blogs and their visibility in the online world.

Later on, we had a talk with Shaa Wasmund, a successful business woman who began blogging and turned this success into a corporation which supports small businesses and gives entrepreneurs tools and advice. Her talk was off the original topic because she felt that the other speakers had already covered the main points. Instead she simply told us her own story on how she made money and spoke frankly about how bloggers should be able to earn money and not have to work in jobs they don't enjoy when their passion lies in blogging and their chosen blog topics. We were also invited to take a free copy of her book "Stop Talking, Start Doing - A kick in the pants in six parts" which is pretty much self explanatory! I loved her bold and frank advice on how to make money from blogging and to try your hardest to achieve your goals instead of making promises that you will never keep. A truly inspirational woman -

At 3pm we were invited to join the Beauty Panel which consisted of many successful bloggers, beauty journalists and magazine writers. One of my favourite beauty bloggers Fleur de Force was on the panel as well as Grooming guru a mens grooming blogger and Beautyjunkielondon whom I won the ticket from! This question and answers session was really interesting as it allowed us to pick the brains of successful writers and find out how we could improve our own blogs. I particularly liked Grooming Guru's view on blogging "Its like sex, the more you blog the better you get at it!"

Other topics covered were the influence of social networking sites, the relationship between PR and bloggers and the power of narrative in the digital world. I found the discussion on the rise of the influence of twitter and facebook fascinating. I particularly enjoyed the talk on the idea that blogs could be in competition with magazines because they are so up to date and break many beauty news stores whilst magazines are monthly or fortnightly and therefore can never truly break news with twitter around! However many people agreed that they are two very different experiences. Magazines are perfect for alone times and to get in depth views on beauty whilst twitter breaks stories without going into detail and the information is thrown at us instead of allowing us to choose our time to sit down and find out the latest in beauty with a cup of tea in hand! I personally can see the benefits of both media.

I had false eyelashes applied by a Shu Uemura make up artist towards the end of the day which were gorgeous! I am definitely going to purchase some next pay day for the Christmas party season!

Natural but glamorous lashes!

I also had a chance to get my hair done by the folk from Hersheson's blow dry bar where you can pop in and get one of 10 hairstyles for only £24, a great idea for those who are going out straight from work and need a quick hair makeover! I chose the B52 beehive half up hairstyle to match my vintage red lips which you can see in the photos at the end of this post.

The goody bag I received! 

Lots of goodies inside! (Reviews coming soon)

I met lots of lovely bloggers including Anna of who writes about everything from fashion to music and gave me some great advice! She also took some photos on her amazing camera (which has inspired me to invest in a great camera for blogging). Here are  some of Anna's photos from the day:

At the Shu Uemura station getting lashes applied!

Anna and I at the Hersheson's blow dry bar station after getting our do's done!

Blogging buddies!

Overall I had a fantastic day at the event! It encouraged me to work extra hard on my blog and to become part of the wider blogging community. I learnt that networking and sharing tips is vital to improving your blog and that bloggers should collaborate not compete. I left with a positive attitude and am more inspired to continue writing and become a successful beauty blogger.


  1. lucky you! can you review the VIVO blush please? :)XX


  2. yes definitely it looks fab! i will review that product first for you :)

    Hayley x

  3. Sounds like a fab event Hayley and thanks for putting up all the blogging advice you received - very interesting! Loving the hair do!

    Emma xx

  4. thankyou Emma! Yes they gave some great tips on blogging and I think I understand it a little better now! the hair was a little OTT on the train home but i didnt care hehe

    Hayley x

  5. You look lovely in the pictures but so different to when I met you.
    I love the Bourjois eyeshadows and the Dance In Glitter Eyelashes, but sadly my budget right now has me sticking with MUA and VIVO. I have the VIVO blush, it's really good :)
    Sounds like a great day xxx

  6. hehe yeah hairs alot darker now and i went for a crazy dark red lip lol.
    Yes im on a budget at the mo too so looking forward to trying the vivo blush! it was such a great day, they are planning another one next year already :)

    Hayley x

  7. Thanks for sharing the tips on how to make the most of your blog, sounds like such a good day! X

  8. Thanks for coming, we are really glad you had a good time and it was nice to meet you. We are already planning another one for 2012 so it would be great to see you there.

    Ciaran from Handpicked

  9. I was at the event as well. It was fab :)

    Great post!! I'm following your blog now, thanks to Handpicked Media listing your blog at their page!

    I'll leave my blog link below in case you fancy having a little look as well.


  10. Elissa- It was really fun and so interesting. glad i could share some tips x

    Thanks Ciaran I had a great day and look forward to hearing more about the next event :)

    Ysis - I thought i recognised you, i follow you on twitter! love your blog! will make sure im signed up to your page :) x

  11. Hi Hayley

    Glad you enjoyed the day. Wish I could have been there.
    My new product Eden Natural Nail Polish Remover was in the gift bag. I hope you enjoy using it and would love to hear your thoughts.

    Take care
    Fresh Therapies