Why I'm Boycotting Being a Coconut Queen

Spreading negativity or stepping on anybody's toes is the last thing I want to do so I'll just clarify before you read, this isn't targeted at anyone or written to cause offence. I noticed these things a few weeks ago but wasn't sure if a lot of brands did this but lately within the Blogosphere, a few bloggers have said similar things about Coconut Lane and brands that are similar.

If you've been following me for a little while you'll see that I, like many other bloggers became a brand ambassador/'Coconut Queen' this year for Coconut Lane. Also this year I purchased a Lumee knock off phone case from a shop on eBay for £7 but we'll get to that later!

Coconut Lane is a brand that offers Pinterest-type typographic prints, admittedly beautiful phone cases and jewellery at prices which sound reasonable for an independent company. However, there's no craft involved other than ordering from wholesale sellers such as AliExpress, and a huge price mark-up.

As a blogger and brand ambassador for Coconut Lane, we get our own discount code to buy with and one for our followers (which we receive commission for all sales from). In return we should blog about these products, hoping that our readers buy in too or like what they see. 

I've come to decide that roping my readers into buying these products is unfair when they can be found on wholesale websites for a much, MUCH cheaper price. Cheaper price usually = easily broken products, green skin from wearing jewellery (yet these cheaply made products are being sold for high street, 'Topshop' prices).

So, back to the phone case, a few weeks ago not wanting to spend £40 on a light up phone case I headed to eBay and found a shop that sells Lumee knock offs brand new for around £7, so I bought it and all is sweet.

A few weeks later I checked the Coconut Lane website to find the exact same (knock-off) Lumee phone case for £20. The worst part of this is that not only are they making at least that much profit from ripping people off, it's that you can actually buy these yourself for a fraction of the price. You can also find many of their other phone cases for no more than a few dollars with a quick search on AliExpress. 

Coconut Lane


This mark-up is unjust and to expect bloggers to not only blog about these products for free but actually buy them to do so is ridiculous.
Coconut Lane


There's a similar situation with Mirina, a 'jewellery' company mainly known for it's large necklaces and Instagram presence who has been selling cheap necklaces that are worth no more than £20 for up to £100 or more. This gal's post sums up the situation very well: Why I Quit The Mirina Ambassador Program. (link removed)

Just because we are bloggers, newbie bloggers especially, doesn't mean that our writing isn't worth pay. Our readers don't deserve to be ripped off, and I feel it's unfair that if you're a Coconut Queen, now you know about this, to continue pushing blog readers (who are often skint students) to buy these products from Coconut Lane and similar companies when the exact same thing can be bought for less than half of the price elsewhere.

I understand how hard it is to get a business off the ground but to justify a mark up I feel they need to add their own stamp to these items. Create your own designs or hire someone to do so, or at least make the price mark-up justifiable when these products can be purchased so easily elsewhere.
"We do not warrant that the quality of any products, services, information, or other material purchased or obtained by you will meet your expectations, or that any errors in the Service will be corrected." - CL Terms & Conditions (page now removed too)

I've only been blogging for almost year but already I can't stress ENOUGH how important it is to background check companies that ask you to be an ambassador, or promote their products.

The last thingis that I personally haven't received commission from Coconut Lane, or have met another blogger who has in return for their promotion. I decided to see if this was the case with any other Coconut Queens so I put out a twitter poll (which I realise may not be entirely representational).
So these are the reasons I won't be promoting these products to you guys anymore!
Have you purchased from Coconut Lane or Mirina? What have your experiences been like as a brand ambassador?
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