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When scrolling leads to sales – Online shoppers share which products social media made them buy

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Linda McDaid today

Linda McDaid today

Linda's normal lashes before chemo treatment

Linda's normal lashes before chemo treatment

Linda close up after version 2

Linda close up after version 2

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It’s estimated that TikTok has one billion monthly active users worldwide. The social media platform is composed of people making videos and watching other users’ content. When someone is doing something that viewers find entertaining or interesting, usually people will recreate the content to show to their followers. The cycle continues until the content becomes a trend or even goes viral.

TikTok trends are how the social media app uses a hashtag or song to group together a viral trends within the app. TikTok trends typically refer to a specific challenge which can include everything from lip syncing to dancing, but can also highlight a subject, topic or theme, such as #makeupcollection or #hairtutorial.

The Revlon One-Step Volumiser was one of many beauty products and tools that went viral on social media in 2021, but did Revlon’s TikTok success directly impact sales? We put the question to the brand.

“The Revlon One-Step Volumiser has become an absolutely iconic product on TikTok and Instagram with the hashtag receiving in excess of 207 million views,” says Camille Bosson, Associate Marketing Manager Beauty, Revlon Hairtools.

“Influencers love the original One-Step tool and the content they create is so engaging — it’s definitely had a positive impact on our success.

“The Revlon One-Step Volumiser is the number-one-selling product of 2021 in the UK hot air category, accounting for one in every two hot air styles purchased in the UK during November 2021 (GFK UK data). Our presence on social media and traction with fans definitely helped accelerate this huge success.

“The product itself is such an innovation, designed to distribute air quickly and evenly to the hair to dry and style faster for less heat damage.

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“It’s a fan favourite with more than 180k reviews and a five-star rating on Amazon. We have lots of exciting news for the brand that we are sure our fans with love.”

Maybelline Lash Sensational Sky High Mascara also went viral last year, with the hashtag #skyhighmascara amassing more than 493 million views on Tik Tok alone. Commenting on its social media success, Lex Bradshaw-Zanger CDMO L’Oreal Group UK & Ireland said: “The Maybelline Lash Sensational Sky High Mascara is a fantastic example of a product becoming an instant hit as a result of real-life testing and recommendations. The product has been viewed over 100 million times on TikTok, a platform which enables our brands and beauty lovers alike to create innovative new content and reach millions of people. Given the success of beauty on TikTok, the L’Oreal Group has been piloting TikTok Shopping; a feature where users can buy from brands within the app whilst watching their favourite creators.”

Strabane TikToker Alison McCool (32) set up her own page a year ago and now has an impressive following of nearly 33k.

“I started the page for comedy purposes, it’s free comedy and who doesn’t like a good old laugh during the day?” Alison says. “Never in a million years did I think I would have 32.6k followers.”

In addition to posting her own content, Alison watches tutorials on TikTok and Instagram; an interest which has led to her buying numerous beauty products.

“I have bought loads of beauty stuff as I have seen the products online on influencers’ pages,” Alison says.

“I am a massive lover of the old fake tan and I love when I find a good one. I came across Insanity Tan which is a Northern Ireland brand, so I thought I’d order it and give it a go — as I saw on their Instagram page, they are cruelty free and organic. It is amazing so I’ve been using it ever since.

“I purchased the BPerfect contour stick recently. I am not the best at make-up but they made the application look so easy and contouring is a very hard thing to do, so I bought it after watching tutorials on Insta and TikTok and I got the hang of it… I think!”

Alison was inspired to buy both products in order to support local businesses, and also for use within her own video content creation.

“I also wanted to buy them to create content, to show that anybody can do make-up or tan — you don’t need to be a pro at it. I can show my way of doing it to the world of TikTok; it’s not great but people love to watch the videos and it turns out OK in the end. The fact these two brands are from Northern Ireland makes me want to buy from them even more, to keep the sales local for good quality products.

“I continue to repurchase from both these brands as I loved them. I would never recommend something to the world of TikTok or Instagram if I didn’t like it or if it was hard to use or if it cause breakouts — nobody likes breakouts!”

In addition to beauty, Alison has purchased a hand soap dispenser, a shower caddy and a ring light after seeing them online.

“I think there are some very practical things that you find on social media and I totally get the whole ‘TikTok made me buy it’ thing,” Alison says. “I once saw on TikTok somebody had dip holders in their car which they got on Amazon for their McDonald’s takeaways. Of course, I bought them and they were worth every penny.”

For more from Alison, see @ali_mccool on TikTok and Instagram.

Derry-based nurse Linda McDaid was prompted to buy a lash product after coming across it on Facebook. Linda (40) was diagnosed with breast cancer in June 2021 and underwent four months of chemotherapy treatment. Consequently, all of Linda’s hair fell out including her eyebrows and lashes, and she turned to social media in search of products to aid the regrowth process following her last chemotherapy session in November.

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Linda McDaid today

Linda McDaid today

Linda McDaid today

“I joined a Facebook page for people with breast cancer,” Linda says.

“People were sharing their experiences and a lot of people said their eyelashes didn’t grow back properly after chemo — their lashes were sparse, thin, short and not as good as they were before treatment. A few people mentioned RevitaLash within the comments and I decided to try it.

RevitaLash was founded by Dr Gayle Brinkenhoff in 2006, in response to his wife losing her hair when undergoing treatment for breast cancer.

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Linda's normal lashes before chemo treatment

Linda's normal lashes before chemo treatment

Linda's normal lashes before chemo treatment

He developed the lash conditioner ‘as a solution to help her feel beautiful’. The company supports breast cancer research and education initiatives year-round.

“I started using RevitaLash at the beginning of December,” says Linda.

“You apply the product like an eyeliner liquid to the top lashes. After a few weeks my lashes started growing and now that they have grown back, they are thicker, feel stronger and are curly.

“I would have used eyelash curlers before and now I don’t need to because they curl by themselves.”

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Linda close up after version 2

Linda close up after version 2

Linda close up after version 2

At £120 per tube, the product doesn’t come cheap, but Linda says it is worth every penny and she was keen to take part in this article in order to raise awareness about the RevitaLash amongst readers who have cancer.

“Without eyelashes I think I looked sick, eyelashes define your face and your features.

“Once my lashes came back, I felt more like me again — I’m absolutely delighted. At £120 I think it is worth the money.

“I’m still using the same bottle for the past eight weeks. I would buy it again, actually I have two other tubes unopened.”


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