Everyone more or less involved in the Internet fashion scene has at least heard of Lookbook.nu. Most of you even have accounts on there, and regularly post new outfits. I'm no exception - I got hooked almost two years ago and returned last month because its pull was too much for me to resist. And before you read this somewhat angry rant, I want you to have no doubts about my future - Lookbook is here to stay, leaving is out of the question, DESPITE - or even because - of what I have to say.
Intrigued? Then read on.
Lookbook.nu is a popular site for hipsters and fashionistas alike. People join, post looks, get hypes. Sounds rather innocent, doesn't it? Ah, but nothing's ever that simple. Because Lookbook turns almost every individual into part of a large sect of hype-seeking slaves - sometimes known as 'hype whores'.
Why does this happen, you may ask? It is my humble opinion that turning works of art of sorts - people's looks, the way they see themselves in the world - into products on the mass market that are all alike, simply with differing prices, is rather unfair to the people in question. After all, how can one evaluate art, on the grand scale of things? Opinions are subjective, so I see no reason for certain looks to be on the HOT page while others can't even dream of reaching it.
Now, this isn't socialism I'm asking for, just a little respect, maybe? Maybe we shouldn't be brainwashed on a site for the open-minded, the creative, to believe any look with 1000+ hypes is truly original and worthy of attention? Because, not meaning to insult anyone, 90% of the looks I see on the HOT page are something I see every day on the streets. Wearable? Sure. Cute? Maybe. Original? Never. So how come Lookbook believes otherwise?
I guess I'd even be okay with this pro-normal approach, maybe find arguments for its existence, if the whole principle of the thing didn't turn hopeful users into desperate hyping slaves prepared to do anything for just a few more hypes, just to be millimeters closer to their goal: the HOT page. They lose whatever creativity they may have had upon joining LB, often without even approaching HOT status. And even if somehow, by luck or whatnot, they reach their goal, what is their prize?
Because face it, one hot look will only give you fleeting fame and therefore short-lived joy. After watching your famous look dramatically lose its position, you'll probably go back to what you were doing before: posting typical LB-style looks in hopes of getting back on the HOT page, getting more of that drug.
Don't call me hypocritical because I do this, too. I understand what I've become, which is exactly why I want you guys to know what Lookbook is really like. Maybe this will help you survive disappointment, stop fighting so pointlessly to win this online popularity contest.
Of course, there are ways of achieving fame. Want to hear them? Here they are:
∆ be thin
∆ be blonde/red-haired
∆ be Swedish
∆ have a professional camera...
∆ ...and a professional photographer to take pictures of you daily
∆ wear Litas
∆ wear expensive clothes
∆ put the current most popular song in the look title
I guess those are the main points, but anyone who's been on Lookbook for a while can probably invent many more.
This is all, I suppose, rant finished. All of this would make me sad if I thought there was a way out. As it is, I can only say one thing: no wonder Tavi Gevinson never registered on Lookbook. And thank goodness.