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Short interview with Merilyn of Beautyreview

In Beauty, Others on 07/08/2013 at 10:00

A couple of years ago, I would buy a skincare or makeup product just because I saw an ad on TV or a fashion magazine of that product with amazing claims. However, most of the time I would be disappointed with the results or that the products didn’t really suit me.

That’s when I started to search online for reviews of various products I am interested in. At the start, I was overwhelmed by the amount of websites, blogs and youtube clips. Then I short-listed a few websites or independent bloggers that I rely on for skincare and makeup tips and product reviews.

Recently, I bumped into Beautyreview.co.nz and I got to interview the creator, Merilyn Havler.

Beautyreview - Merilyn

  • What is the reason behind creating Beautyreview.co.nz?

Social media has really changed the way consumers shop and behave. They are a lot more sceptical about marketing claims and more likely to do pre shopping research online before they go and buy a product for the first time.

Beauty Review started with a seed of an idea that was then refined and distilled down to a single minded proposition, which was creating a beauty community in NZ for NZ women that was relevant to them. Where they could interact with each other and have honest discussions and opinions about products.

  • Does Beautyreview.co.nz get sponsored with full-sized samples for members to review? Are all the reviews truly independent and not marketing-related?

We now have over 3000 members on our BR database aged from 16-70, and beauty brands use our members as an independent source to get their products reviewed.  When a member reviews a product, either one we have sent them or a product they have seen on the site that they have used, they write and upload the review themselves, we do not edit them in any way. This is why we send out full size product for our members to review, not samples sizes as you cannot completely experience and understand a product just from a sample.

Reviews posted on BR are completely independent and our clients understand this once a product is in the hands of our reviewers then the product needs to deliver what it is claiming to do so or it may not be reviewed favourably.

  • What is the selection process for Beautyreview.co.nz to send out products for review?

When you sign up to Beauty Review you are invited to populate your beauty profile which tells us such things as your skin type, hair type, hair condition preferred lipstick colour etc.

When we go and select members for our review panels we search our database for members who’s beauty profile most closely match the product being reviewed and then a random selection for the review teams are made from that selection pool. So say for example we are reviewing an anti wrinkle cream targeted at women over 40 with dry skin, if you are aged under 40 with oily skin, your name would not come up for selection for this trial.

That said we often run “promotional” review teams which are open to all members these are generally for products like nail colours etc, we use these review team to reward those members who interact and talk us frequently and comment on our articles, polls in our BR forum or on FB.  Spaces for these reviews are so highly sought after that they go in literally seconds!

  • Does posting a negative review of a product cause a member to have a lower chance of getting selected for future reviews?

Absolutely not.  It is important that members review the products they are sent honestly and posting a poor review will not impact your chances of future selection.

  • Can we expect to see any changes or additions to Beautyreview.co.nz (i.e. iphone apps, loyalty points system, competitions, etc.)?

Absolutely! We have just launched a new segment “how to” with Beauty Review where our BR experts show members how to get professional beauty looks at home, we’re now starting to post member video reviews and we have a number of really cool new segments currently in development as we speak that will really set Beauty Review apart from other Beauty Sites.

Thank you Lee from The Generalist PR for giving me this opportunity to interview Merilyn. I truly appreciate people with the motivation and the drive to provide the community with


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