Going vegan can be a scary lifestyle change, especially when you are going to take the step in one day. If you are thinking about changing up your diet I suggest you take your time! It took me a year to go from vegetarian to 100% vegan. I changed my diet step by step, this helps you to discover new sorts of foods and flavors and your body gets enough time to get used to your new way of eating. I wrote down my 6 best tips to get you started. This post may also be helpful if you are a vegetarian or if you are just curious about this topic!

  1. You will need a Vitamine B12 supplement.
  • Vitamin B12 occurs naturally only in animal foods, it helps our body with keeping the blood cells and nerve’s healthy and it supports your body in making DNA. A low percentage of B12 in your blood can lead to hair loss, concentration problems, tiredness, headaches and so on.  Don’t worry: you can get B12 in every local drug store. If you are going vegan, I recommend you to visit your doctor to ask for the best vitamins B12 supplements. Every once in a while I get my blood tested, to see if I am not missing out of any important vitamins.

2. Large portions 

  • Keep in mind that your body uses the animal form of some nutrients better than the plant form. You might need a higher dose or cofactors to help you absorb nutrients. For example, I eat lots of everything. Instead of 200 grams of greens per day, I will eat 300 – 400 grams. This sounds crazy, but you have to get enough iron out of your greens. The percentage of iron in meat is way higher than in beans or carrots.

3. Know your motivation

  • Why do you want to go vegan? Write down your thoughts and expectations. I went vegan because I wanted to live a healthier lifestyle, supporting the environment and I realized how much new energy I got. As soon as you know why you want to do this, it gets much easier to stick to this vegan diet. If you are having a hard time during your vegan diet, you can read this back.

4. Weightloss

  • When you are changing your diet it can occur that you are going to lose some weight. Keep this in mind and track your calories in the beginning. When I just went fully vegan I recognized that I didn’t have any energy at all. I became feeling dizzy all the time. It turned out that I was eating not enough calories per day, so watch out for this!

5. Do not expect from others that they will understand

  • Sometimes it will feel a bit lonely, your friends may be asking lots of questions and no matter how much you try to explain, not everyone will understand your decision. On the other hand, you may also inspire everyone around you!

6. Remember: keep learning

  • Going vegan is a learning curve. Living as a vegan in a non-vegan world takes both courage and curiosity. Take a look every once in a while at the process you made. During your period of going/being a vegan, you will learn lots about foods and supplements. In the first few months, your diet will keep changing. Find your favorite foods this period and keep playing around with them.

It is not a secret: blogging is DYING. The growth of social media, like Instagram, took away the importance of having a blog. It is hard to find original bloggers nowadays, everyone can start an Instagram page. Taking the time and effort to design a website does not feel like it is worth it anymore. I am going to explain to you why it still is and how you can make people actually read your work.

Having a blog besides any other social media platform will give you a few important benefits:

  • You can manage your online identity and build up trust.
  • Your engagement will increase with your followers
  • You can show more of you
  • Brands are still looking for bloggers to write articles about their products
  • Looking for a job? Show your blog, they will be impressed!
  • It is a way of expressing yourself
  • Share your knowledge, help each other out!
  • You will learn a lot about designing, SEO, building a website, laws, photography….
  • and so on

Since blogging isn’t that popular anymore, it gets harder and harder to gain supportive readers. In the next 10 steps, I will explain to you how to make a difference.

1 Focus on quality content
Always choose quality over quantity. People come back to your blog because they like your content. If they can see you have put a lot of hard work into your photo’s, texts and articles they will come back sooner. Sometimes great work takes a longer, be patient with this. 

2 Share, share and share your work! Everywhere!
While searching for information about this topic I found this great page full of ideas about how you can promote your blog in 101 different ways: How to promote your blog 101 ways. I definitely recommend giving this site a visit. There are so many ideas you probably did not know yet. 

3 Read and comment on popular blogs
It is very important to be out there. Comment on popular blogs within your country. You will receive more traffic to your website this way! Try to follow the same blogs and Instagram pages for a while and really connect with the fellow blogger.

4 Link to popular websites relevant to your topic
Linkbuilding is another way to gain more traffic to your website. In this way google things that you are an expert in your niche. You know what to do. You have found information and you want to share this with the world. 

5 Blog regularly
If your visitors know that next week, the same day, the same time they can expect a great blog post from you again, they will more likely come back. You have made them curious to see more. This does not mean that you have to blog every day or every other day. Ones or twice a week is perfect. 

6 Be open and real towards your readers
You are human, as human as your readers. So show some realness! Share your thoughts, fears and talk openly about your opinions. People like to see who is behind all the work. If you have experienced something that may help others, feel free to talk about it. Nobody is perfect and as humans, we know how vulnerable we are. 

7 Find a need and fill it
What is missing in your nice? What are your readers looking for? Get to know your target audience and play with all the options you have. Try out new things and topics to see which ones are popular. I noticed on Instagram for example that my ‘dreamy’ pictures are always going way better than normal pictures of me. So I try to ‘create’ more ideas and I got way more success. 

8 Sign in as a blogger at every agency you can find
This is so important! To be known as a blogger, you have to be active in the PR and business world. Yes, people can get to know you true Instagram or your blog, but signing up at agency’s can bring you closer to brands. 

9 Give readers a reason to read your work: help them out with helpful posts or topics ( like this one )
I think this speaks for itself. 

10 Make it very easy for people to subscribe
One of the easiest ways to gain more readers is to set them on a mailing list. If they want to sign up, they should not be searching for a long time on your website. It has to be easy, with one click and they are done! You can also set up a mailing list yourself. 

 

 

 

 

I can not believe how fast the time goes every time I travel abroad. My and my boyfriend had a relaxing week in Zakynthos, a Greece island. It was my 5th time visiting a Greece island. It is clear that I can not have enough. Greece definitely stole my heart. The small streets, the sweet people, the food, the sea, ones you have been there you know what I am talking about. Zakynthos is the greenest island I have visited so far, it contains so much nature. We drove around for hours on our quad to explore the caves, beaches, and little villages. As soon as we booked I decided to check out google to find the best places around our apartment to shoot my outfits. When I saw these sunbeds, I had to make this matching picture.

This beach was in Agios Sostis, a small village right next to the beach. Our apartment was 5 minutes away, it was the perfect spot! I normally never buy anything on the beach but this day there was a seller walking around with fresh fruits. Of course, I couldn’t resist. We have been visiting this beach twice this holiday because there were so many other places to explore! Zakynthos has so much to offer. I am wearing a bikini from Shein, the quality is fine and it fits good around my hips. Decided to order some more for our next trip! I found some other awesome pieces: Shop my Swimwear here . My bag is from Cult Gaia  and I love it so much! It makes every outfit so stylish. The sunglasses is not from Versace but the one laying on the sunbed is! I loved to style this pictures with my cat eye sunnies, in my next post you will see the one from Versace!

Where are you going next?

 

 

 

After blogging frequently for one year now, I discovered some things that work and things who do not. As every beginner, I made some mistakes, which brought me in positions when I did not know what to do. Luckily everything always works out in the end! And with the help of the internet, you will come a long way. I thought it would be interesting to share my Do’s and Don’ts as it comes to blogging, to help you out.

DO’S:

Post Frequently and Consistently

This is one of the most important things to do as a blogger. In this way, you will keep readers engaged and they will return back for more. Of course, if your content is helpful and interesting for them to read. Make a schedule for yourself, this can be a monthly or a weekly one, to keep yourself on track. Choose a day or more per week on which you will publish a blog post. For example, I always post one on Monday, Wednesday and Friday at 08:00.

Reach out to other bloggers

In order to receive more readers and visitors, you need to be active on other blogs. I met a few of my best friends (other bloggers) by starting my blog. We became really close and we always make pictures together. It all starts with commenting on other blog posts, from bloggers in your nice. As a fashion blogger, I would comment on other fashion blogs to build up a relationship with them. Reaching out to other bloggers can have another big benefit for you: it is easier for brands to find you.

Stay Positive

Nothing happens over one night. Do not expect too much, the first year you will only be working with hardly any readers. If you stay positive and close to your self your readers will see this back in your blog posts. People are not attracted to read something negative, people want to feel good and read about interesting topics. Just keep that in mind 🙂

Write like you are having a one – on – one conversation

Make your posts personal and easy to read. Like you are talking to a friend. Your readers will get a feeling like they know you and they will be more likely to come back. Just show you and do not be too scared to share too much of yourself, your thoughts or your style. I have a part on my blog that is called: Diary. Here you can find topics about blogging, personal growth etc. I love to write down my thoughts ones in a while and it makes me more ‘real’ or ‘human’ towards my followers. Your readers will take your words more seriously.

Share Share & Share

Imagine: you are a new entrepreneur and you want to reach out to people online. What is the best way to do it? Well, share your work! Show everyone what you are doing and creating. Share your blog posts on all your social media, do not hide and be proud of what you have accomplished. Start with your family, they are your biggest supporters. But I have to warn you: do not share your work with the same people over and over again. Sharing your new blog post one time is enough otherwise, it will get annoying. When you have written a new one, you can share that new one on your socials again. Do not push, but let anyone know that you are out there!

DON’TS:

Use pictures from someone else

This can be very disappointing: you can’t just search on google for a picture and then use it on your blog. You will get in big trouble for this. There are companies searching daily for websites who use content from others. This can cost you a big fine and how is this original? Choose your own path and you are creative enough to make your own pictures! You already started and designed a blog, so I am optimistic about the fact that you are able to make some pictures yourself. Of course, you can use one from the internet ones in a while, but you have to take them from special sites then. So that you will not get a fine.

Set unrealistic goals for yourself

Okay, your blog is designed, let’s start! You maybe you are so excited that you are thinking of posting daily. The first week went well, the second one was harder and the third… Take your time by searching for inspiration and blog posts you want to write about. Make a little schedule for yourself, start with one post per week and see how it goes. I am blogging for two years now and since 2018 I post 2 – 3 times per week. It get’s easier every time you do it, your writing will get better. Don’t be too hard on yourself and just enjoy the learning. It does not have to be perfect at ones. Write down a goal that is achievable ( I think every goal is achievable ) but take it step by step. Make your goal a little smaller: what is possible besides your daily routine?

Ramble on

People come to your blog because they saw something they would like to know more about. Always write something that people mind find interesting or something that they can learn from. Don’t ramble on. Choose a topic and make a few headlines before you start writing. What is it that you want to share? How can it help or inspire others? Your readers are your most pressures visitors and you should keep them interested. Personally, I love to write blog posts like this. I love to share my experience and giving you tips who will help you out make me just so happy!

Be a walking advertisement 

The last one is one that is the most annoying thing a blogger can do: only writing a post when a brand-sponsored them to do. Your blog will be nothing more than a walking advertisement. By sharing brand after brand. Of course, blogging is also about working with brands and it is your income. But, stay close to yourself. I only work with brands I value and love so much that I want to share them with you. This blog post btw is not sponsored and completely written out of my heart. I see so many bloggers only writing about brands who send them free stuff. There is nothing wrong with that! But do not make it to much. Keep real and close to what you like to write about.

I hope all my tips where helpful! I would love to hear your feedback.

 

Top: Loavies | Skirt: NA-KD | Jewerly: Cluse | Bag: Chi Chi London

Have you ever heard: ‘you have to do it for yourself’, ‘love yourself first, before you can love anyone else’? It may sounds selfish, life is not only about you. But in fact, it is.

Putting yourself first is a topic which is often spoken about, but what does it mean to you? Lately some changes in my life made me realize how important it is to go 100% for yourself. No one is going to get you where you want to be. Because you matter, whatever your dreams, goals or situation is. Putting yourself first means taking care of your body, let it rest in time, treat it well. Your body is your souls home. If you want to feel good happy and energized you should listen to it. It can be anything from cancelling night plans so that you will get enough sleep or by just shutting of your computer for an hour. Everything in your life benefits from already these small changes.

Also, putting yourself first means loving yourself. By every decision, moment or day. It can already help if you write down the things you like about yourself. I noticed that if I work out often I get closer to my body. And I love my body more! It makes me feel good and strong and I have way more confidence then I used to have back in the days. When I was younger I used to dislike so many parts of myself, now I ask myself why? If you feel beautiful, you will be beautiful. What you think you become. When I was in high school I got bullied a lot, people always said: ‘ you are different’. I started to believe this. And now with every step I take in my life, this little word is somewhere hiding in my mind. Ignore these negative thoughts and focus on the positive. That is how I start loving myself.

 

How to put yourself first 

It can be challenging to put yourself before anything else. What would people think of you? You are maybe afraid that you will lose the connection and contact with the people who are close to you. The reality is… the right ones will stay. The people who really care about you will give you that extra time and space. Learn yourself to say no. Choose your boundaries. Other people will respect them and eventually, they will start to respect you. It took me a while to figure out my boundaries. Especially in relationships, I found this very hard to do. Because you would do everything for love, right? Until it doesn’t make you happy anymore. I was living his life, instead of mine. Here are some changes I noticed by putting myself first:

  • I got more energy
  • I feel happy almost everyday, because I am doing the things I want to do
  • My productivity increased
  • I got way more confident about myself

In order to get where you want to be you have to listen to yourself. What is it in life you really want? For example: I want to feel healthy and energized. Write down a list with things who make you feel this way and follow this list! Write down your thoughts and fears, give them a place on a paper and leave them there. All you have to do is to start.

It makes it easier to begin by making small steps. Schedule some ‘me time‘ in every day. It can be 10 minutes or one hour. That is up to you. In that time of the day you are going to do whatever makes you feel happier and closer to your goals. For me working out or reading a magazine is the best ‘me time’. Or by taking a long bath. I try to do this everyday. Even if I have to cancel a appointment to do this. I understand that if you are not working from home, this can be much harder. But right after your long day at work you can go for a walk outside or you just run into the gym. People often say: I don’t have time. Where do you get the time from to do all this? Well it is all about what you do with the time you have. We are given 24 hours per day. Calculate how many of them you are not doing for yourself, but for someone or something else.

The last things who can help you putting yourself first are:

  • write down a list with things who make you happy
  • ask yourself if what you are doing is giving you energy ( I can get a lot of positive energy from visiting festivals or concerts )
  • if something is not giving you positive energy anymore, change the situation or leave it
  • choose the right people around you
  • choose healthy over junk food or sugars ( changing my diet was the best thing I ever did )
  • take care of your body

I hope all these things will help you to make yourself a priority. If you want to read a updated diet routine, please drop a comment down below

Outfit details:
– Top:  Loavies
– Skirt: NA-KD
– Shoes: Asos
– Bag:  Chi Chi Clothing
– Jewelry: Cluse

 

Red Dress – Lulus

Hey my lovelies, today I wanted to write about an important topic that has been going around lately: getting the likes. Since the algorithm was introduced by Instagram big creators saw there engagement going down. After months of complaining I feel like it is finally getting a bit better now. Also, my engagement decreased and it FREAKED me out. I was working so hard, for what?! Instagram! I see girls now, who are just starting Instagram growing like crazy. I wondered for a while… what am I doing wrong? If you are also struggling with this, this blog post may help you out! We all just need to relax a little bit…

First we will go a little bit into the details, why do we get so obsessed with likes on social media? Getting a certain amount of likes gives us the feeling that we are  important. People like us ! omg. It would be so weird if we would have a like button in real life haha. If you are insecure about the fact that people like you or not in real life, you will also be insecure on social media. The amount of likes you can get can give you that satisfaction you where looking for. I think it all starts with SELF LOVE. During my journey on Instagram I started to love myself, I grow. I like my pictures and it bothers me not anymore if you don’t.

So, what did change my mindset?

  • I was worrying so much about the lower engagement, that one day I was sick of it. I just wanted to post things I LIKE. I believe in the fact that if you create and post what you like, the likes will come back to you.
  • Remember, that half of the people who are liking your post: DON”T GIVE A DAMN. They just like it! Because they saw something in your photo, maybe it was your outfit or maybe it was the bird flying around in the back, something triggered them to move there fingers. It doesn’t mean that they are also interested in your life. This made me realize that getting a lot of likes doesn’t mean that you are necessarily popular on Instagram. They may not see you and your account ever again. So why would you worry about those people?
  • This one is really important for the entrepreneurs out here. I always thought that if I didn’t had a bunch of likes on my pictures, I could never start a good working blog. Well, see where I am now. I am having an average of 1.000 likes per photo, which is not that much you would say. But I am working with amazing brands and I got great opportunities as it comes to events or press trips. The interaction with my followers is really high because I do not have so many to worry about! I know and feel them, which is a really strong benefit if you are promoting a brand.
  • Last but not least: I got comfortable with my content. I wasn’t looking for the best pictures anymore, the pictures I thought would do great. I starting posting the pictures I loved. The pictures I was proud off. This made me much more happier then consistently trying to creating something that wasn’t me. Being confident about your content is so important, I can’t say this enough guys! If you are confident you will show this off, your followers will see this. Instagram rewards everyone with their own style. You should just do you. And yes, maybe you will not get the likes you where hoping for, but you will create work you can look at and be proud off.

I hope these tips will help you to stop worrying and enjoy Instagram more!
You can find the dress that I am wearing right here: Lulus

XO
Esmée

Red Dress – Lulus

Life as an influencer

Life as an Influencer, let’s talk.

Oh dear, I am so against this word: ‘influencer’. It seems like it is hot now to start an Instagram page, it is even weird when you do not have one. Well, to attract you, I had to use it. I do not want to spread any negativity or hate, of course, but I have been struggling these last couple of days. I have become more and more aware of what is happening around me, or us, as bloggers. Influencer marketing is not taking seriously, well at least not always. Sometimes I feel like all my work is for nothing. I wondered yesterday if I should quit for a while, but why should I quit something I love doing so much? I have never been so confident with myself, as I am now. Blogging really changed so many aspects of my life. And, as you may know, life as an influencer, is not easy. It takes hard work and consistency. I feel like people are starting to forget this. Other people may think: oh so much fun you are going to the beach! That must be a relaxing day! Well, to be honest, I was exhausted. We had several outfits with us and we took pictures for 3 hours. I did not even lay down for one second. ( But I love it haha )

Just imagine: planning your outfits the day before, looking for the right location. When you arrive, the location is not as what you had hoped and you just have to deal with how it turned out. I take sometimes over 300 photo’s in one session and 2 or 3 of them are good. I think that our work is underestimated. Very often, brands do not understand how much time it takes. It almost makes me angry when a brand emails me for a collaboration and asks if I can post 10 photo’s of a bath bomb. Influencing is not a joke. I revues to do that.

Besides taking photo’s and planning outfits you also have to be out there all the time. I hear from a lot of friends around me that I am so much ‘on my phone’ . Since it was hard to explain what I was doing, I always answer with: Yeah, I am active in my community now, I will be back in 10 minutes’. Of course with a big smile. I try to be as much in connection with my followers as possible. As an influencer you have to be on social media all the time. Sharing, sending messages, I have not even start about your mailbox yet… More and more brands are noticing the benefits of working with bloggers/influences. Which is a good thing for us, yeah! But, that also means that this job is about to get serious. Try to tell other people that you are making a living from Instagram, they may look at you like you are crazy. Well, they have no idea…

Beach

This day shooting at the beach made me realize that this was way more than being out there or sharing pictures. It is a way in which I can share me and my creativity. I met my best friends because of blogging. Being an ‘influencer’ was never my goal. My love for social media has been there since I was 12 and now I found a way to express and design this love.

Best,

Esmée

Outfit Details:
Top – Forever 21 – Sold out
Skirt – Asos – Sold out
Sorry guys! Bought them last year. x

Pictures by : Kevin Adams @smada.k

Very often I get the questions: how did you grow your Instagram account till 16,5 k followers? How do you contact brands and how do you create a feed? When I was younger I would never thought I would be here right now. Doing something like this, was only a dream. In this blogpost I am going to explain a few things to you about Instagram and how to get noticed as a ‘blogger’ or ‘instagrammer’. I do not like the word influencer so you won’t see this back here.

The App

A little reminder: Instagram is a Social media application. The app was build to connect with each other by sharing photo’s or video’s. So, if you want to get noticed: be out there. Like and comment on other bloggers photo’s. Share thoughts, your daily activities and favorite songs on your insta stories. Try to be as open as possible: they need to get to know you ! By being super active on Instagram you will receive comments and likes back. Because of Instagram I met two of my best friends now. It is way more then just an app to share photo’s. See it a little bit as a ‘dating site’, your followers want to get to know you, but you also want (and need) to get to know them! Once you know which kind of people follow you, you can see which kind of pictures work for your community. The more and more people starting to follow you, the more time it takes to keep these relationships. This works just like a brand: if you want to sell a product, you need to have customers who know you exists! For me it took 1,5 years to get here, for other people it takes half a year and since the algorithm changed it can take maybe 5 years to gain 10 k followers. But this should never be your goal. Your only and most important goal is to build up relationships, very strong ones, with the followers you have! Brands find this more attracting these days, since so many people are buying followers. It is not about (okay, it is, but also not) the amount of likes or followers but about the quality of the relationship between you and your following.

How to start

Take your favorite outfit, grab your boyfriend by his arm and be sure that you have a phone with you. Choose a background outside and take the picture! Well this is how I started haha! Just do it, that is all I can say. Start posting pictures every day. When you post one, be sure that you thank the people who leave a comment by sending them a message, like there photo’s or react on there comment with: thank you so much dear (something like that). These people can be a follower in the future. And as I said: be super active. If you are willing to do that, you will grow your account eventually.

Step 2 is to find your own editing style. Collect pictures of other Instagrammers  in a save map and call it: inspo. Try out different apps to match the styles you like. Editing is my favorite part of Instagram, I can do this for hours. Since I am using Lightroom I noticed such a big quality difference in my photo’s, I can definitely recommend this program. The other apps that you need to have as an instagrammer/blogger are:
– VSCO
– Afterlight
– Facetune ( to make everything white and smooth)
– Snapseed
– UNUM with this app you can plan out your feed.

It took me a while before I found out which editing style I liked the most. And every season I change up my editing to match the colors of the season. This is all totally up to you ! Don’t expect that it is all going to be super great and beautiful when you start, try out some things and play with the tools of the apps.

How to get noticed by brands

This can be hard, especially in the beginning. Just as you have to build up relationships with your followers, you also have to build up relationships with brands. It took me some time to connect and build a partnership with brands. You have to think about their position: all they want is getting noticed by their target audience to provide more sales. So how did I started?  I posted everyday on Instagram and on my blog and I was very active with commenting on other bloggers pages. This is how brands noticed me and my style. Also, some times I had this kind of picture idea in my head of an outfit and location but I did not had the outfit yet. I send a lot of emails to brands with a collaboration idea. They love this! A great idea can be good for their branding position. This way I would get the outfit to make the picture and they had more marketing activities. Another way to get noticed by brands is to like and comment on their Instagram or blog page. It can be hard to find an email address who brings you in contact with the right person (PR or Marketing division). So this is a great solution to solve that problem.

There will be times when brands say NO. I have been there. This can have several reasons: maybe they already have a bunch of bloggers in their mailing list and they can not provide new ones with collaborations. Or your content does not match theirs! This is a very common one. ALWAYS choose brands who match your personal style and content ! I see so many instagrammers receive and promote clothing that they would never where in real life. Only for the pictures?! Also, do not hesitate to tell if you do not like their offer. Some times it just does not work for you. I had some brands in the past who asked about 10 pictures of one item. That was just way to much. Creating content takes a lot of time and some people do not know this yet. Tell them that this is to much for you, you are in charge.

What now?

So, your page is slowly growing, you worked with a few brands and your blog posts are going well. What is next? The most important thing is to keep going. Find out what works for your Instagram and do this a lot. Visit events to get to know other bloggers and share tips with each other.

If you still feel like you are not getting any traffic on Instagram, here are a few things you can do:

  • Try to get one of your pictures reposted on a big Instagram page, like: fashiongoalz
  • Message other bloggers and ask for a shout out on Instagram stories. This works so well!
  • Take a look at your content: are there things you can improve? Is something missing?
  • Learn how to edit your photo’s in your own way! Stand out!
  • Share your Instagram photo’s and link on your other social media platforms
  • Tell people about it! Be a little proud of yourself.
  • Ask for some support of your friends. Maybe they can comment on your latest picture?
  • When you work with brands, ask them if they can share your photo on their account!
  • Push Push Push yourself : the only way to get noticed is to be active daily

I hope that these tips work for you ! Keep going lovelies!

Share your account down below so that I can take a look ! 

xo Esmée