Personal style bloggers sometimes get a bad rap -- caricatured as pretty, brainless girls who dress up for their camera-wielding boyfriends and post their results to a WordPress blog. But over the past decade, these independent publishers have become a real force in the fashion industry -- not just snapping up front row seats at fashion shows, but landing major campaigns and collaborations with brands, becoming regular guests on TV shows like "Today" and "America's Next Top Model," and turning their blogs into multimillion-dollar businesses. Some have become household names.
Continuing in our annual-ish tradition, today we're releasing our 2015 ranking of the most influential personal style bloggers in the world. This list looks wildly different than it did in 2013. Here's why. For one, we excluded every blogger who has expanded her empire to the point that the blog is no longer only about her. (Leandra Medine, Garance Dore and Emily Weiss fall into this category.) We also chose to focus on those who write more about personal style than anything else. (That means leaving out lifestyle and photography bloggers.) We took more international bloggers into consideration, since the Internet is global and all. And we narrowed it down to blogs that cover womenswear more regularly than menswear.
Why did we change it up? Because the role of #influencers is changing, and we felt like this list is a better representation of what's happening within a particular niche of celebrity.
To determine the ranking, we considered:
Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and Pinterest followers, as well as website traffic. These numbers gave us a snapshot of how many people these bloggers are reaching every day.
Brand extensions. We gave props to bloggers who have used their influence to create original products.
It factor. We talked to industry insiders about whom advertisers are loving right now, and who is moving the most products via affiliate links.
Google News searches. Headline makers were rewarded for extending their reach beyond their own network.
After crunching the numbers -- really, numbers were crunched, via Excel -- we were rewarded with this list:
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