Celebrity snake oil?

Jun 14, 2017

I thought this was something interesting and a topic we should totally address as it lands squarely in the realm of health and wellness, partially.

A thought-provoking article popped up on my Facebook news feed today (isn’t that where we all get our news these days? Let’s be honest). The article is from the New York Post and can be found here, titled “How celebs are tricking you into BS wellness fads”.  There are two different issues here I want to tackle, one being the hate and backlash against Goop (Gwyneth Paltrow’s health and wellness media site) and one being influencer marketing.

This seems to be the hot topic du jour and was born out of the “In Goop Health” wellness summit that just took place in LA. Let me tell you, Gwyneth Paltrow is taking a lot of heat right now. In my opinion unjustly so. Yes, she promotes a lot of out there ideas, philosophies and health fixes. We have to remember is all about perspective, yes, she has been lucky in life to have made enough money and had the time to focus on what she loves, which is wellness. Yes, a lot of what she promotes is wacky, but do your own research and then decide for yourself. I think it is important to remember, she did not have to start and create Goop, she did it to educate people. She could have continued to star in movies and just sat back and lived her life. She chose to educate (where you agree or not with what she talks about is a separate issue). Wellness is her passion, yes, she has had the luxury of trying things that us mere mortals may not ever get to try based on cost, but that is a good thing. It is a good think to learn and hear about out of the box, alternatives, even thought you may not believe in it. No one is forcing anyone to do anything against their will. I also think some of the problem and backlash again Gwennie, is that she promotes very high ticket products and alternatives making her seem out of touch with reality. However, being a publicist in the world of media and writing for different publications, I have learned, not everything is for everyone, meaning the people reviewing and judging her are not her target demographic and that is okay. It is okay if you aren’t in the 1% of the world that can not afford a $1500 jade egg to ease PMS symptoms, and that is OKAY!

Sadly, in our society where pharmaceutical companies reign king, drugs for diseases and ailments are pushed down our throats because that is where the money is. Indeed there are a lot of all natural, alternative and ancient cures that are not recommended to us just purely based on our system of doctors and government (they can’t make money from natural remedies). If you find a great integrative and holistic wellness provider that is a different story. I have found many amazing resources through Goop such as Dr. Junger and is Clean Program.

Personally, I always think it is best, when something (ANYTHING) interests you to do your own research and take a deep dive, not just in the health and wellness space, but could be in beauty, fitness, money management, heck, anything.

The general public is confused on how to live a healthy life, but that is not the celebrities fault, everyone needs to educate themselves and do the research themselves. You don’t just buy something because you see a TV ad for it? Do you? This is no different. We all know your eyelashes are not sky-high from Maybelline and she isn’t born with it, they are eyelash extensions, or fake lashes and even Photoshop.

HOWEVER, there is another issue in this article that is tied in. In todays world with celebrities and “influencers” hawking everything from pharmaceuticals (Hello, Kimmy K.) to diet teas to cars (I see you Volvo) to the newest tushy flattering jeans, you have to be very careful. Advertising is no longer transparent and companies are using young beautiful girls to push products on unsuspecting consumers. It is the wild wild west out there in terms of advertising and marketing. It is hard not to get caught up and just click and buy based on the pretty young things that are pushing them. No amount of lipgloss is going to make your lips look like Kylie’s (hello, it only took her about a year to admit it wasn’t her lip plumpers but actually filler). No waist trainer will get you Kim Kardashian’s hip to waist proportions (SPOILER ALERT: she gets cosmetic fillers and enhancements). This has been going on since sliced bread was invented, we all know Wonder Bread and that is because of TV ads. This is not a new problem, social media is just a new way that we are being marketed too. The problem is social media and blogs were once thought of as a more authentic platform, and they were until people started using these platforms as careers and a way to generate income. I have no problem with this either, good for them! I have a problem with transparency. It needs to be clear, especially to young, impressionable children. Luckily, now the Federal Trade Commission is forcing influencers to disclose when they are being paid to talk about a product and endorse it. I am interested where this trend is heading (it is the publicist in me, I can’t help it).

To end this little post, do your research and being healthy is purely based on the food you eat and moving your bod. It is simple, everything else just enhances. There are no quick fixes in life.

What are your thoughts on this?


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