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Bloggers To Watch

By Jutta Klee
Posted On Apr 30, 2012

Our column on top bloggers in the realms of beauty, health and anti-aging

By: Ivette Figueroa

FUTUREDERM.COM

Nicki Zevola

We all know the adage “Everyone is trying to sell you something.” Even knowing that, however, it’s hard to distinguish hype from fact in a beauty market constantly pumping out new products that claim they hold the secret ingredient that really works. If only there was someone out there who could help settle the debate. Oh, wait…. There is.

Nicki Zevola was like any other beauty addict except that she really knew how to do her homework. “I was always talking to my mom and friends about beauty products. I’d say, ‘This one has this ingredient and works and that one has that ingredient and doesn’t work…’ I think I was driving them crazy,” laughs Nicki, who is currently attending medical school at the University of Pittsburgh. “My mom suggested that other people might want to know this kind of stuff and that I should start blogging.”

And that was the birth of FutureDerm—a one-stop shop for all things beauty-related. Nicki’s goal was to provide clear, well-researched information about beauty and skincare from a slightly different angle than the rest of the blogosphere. “I analyze beauty products from a scientific perspective. I’ll take a product and review it and I’ll write what’s on typical beauty product blogs—how it looks, etc.—but then I take it one step further and analyze it from a scientific perspective.”

Indeed, her blog aims to educate as much as inform about products. And with over 100,000 views a month, people are starting to take notice. FutureDerm was named one of the top 30 beauty bloggers in the world by Konector.com and has received media attention from the likes of The New York Times and The Journal of Drugs in Dermatology.

Nicki plans to publish her success in a book about beauty blogging. But more importantly, she wants to continue doing what she does best—giving advice on skin care products. “I always wanted to become a dermatologist, and I was always interested in skin care, so I always saw myself as a future derm.”

THIS WEEK FOR DINNER.COM

Jane Maynard

Like most great ideas, Jane Maynard stumbled into writing This Week For Dinner. “I had no intention of starting a blog,” says the Bay Area native. “I basically wanted to share my menus with my brother who lived far away, and I wanted my friends, who were more prepared than I, to tell me what they were cooking each day.”

When Jane first started the blog, her daughter had just turned two and she was attempting to get more organized by going through bouts of meal mapping, trying to plan ahead for weeks at a time. “I would go to the park in the afternoon with my daughter and I would ask my friends what they were making. I started the blog just to keep track of all the menus,” she says.

Over time, the idea evolved and This Week For Dinner became a hotspot for lots of busy folks on a healthy recipe hunt. “Every Sunday I post my menus and people come and post their menus in the comments. Beyond that, during the week I write my recipes or about favorite products or where we eat when we travel. It chronicles my life with food,” explains Jane.

Today, the blog offers all sorts of delectable dishes from the gourmet to healthy eats, garnering a spot in Martha’s Circle—a network of blogs chosen by Martha Stewart editors. “I can’t believe it’s been five years since I started it,” says Jane. “I feel like having the blog has improved my family’s life, since we are planning our meals and eating healthier.”

Indeed, that concept has carried over into thousands of homes as Jane’s loyal readers both feed and read the weekly updates.

And are there any future plans for the busy mom? “Between keeping This Week for Dinner fresh and updated 3 to 5 times per week, and being the editor of DailyBuzz Moms and FoodPress.com, my plate is full…and delicious! I think the key to longevity in blogging is loving what you’re blogging about.”

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