Shopgirl to stylist

Today sees the launch of Elle UK’s Shopgirl to Stylist talent contest. Billed as the fashion version of X Factor, it’s a six-month long contest in which wannabe stylists working in fashion retail can submit pictures of their styling efforts online to be judged by Elle readers and the Elle team. The prize is an internship at Elle and the chance to style a shoot. The interesting bit is the contest itself whereby finalists will have fashion challenges to complete, mentored by members of the Elle fashion team, as well as a one-to-one grilling by editor Lorraine Candy.

The online aspect of the contest is timely (it was launched at a bloggers’ briefing during LFW). Readers will have the opportunity to ‘love heart’ the stylist’s entries they like, comment and share their profiles via Facebook and Twitter. In this age of street style blogs and check-out-my-style websites like, it’s a canny move to get the readers involved via social media. “We’re excited to be involving our readers in our first ever search for the UK’s hottest styling talent and really looking forward to receiving their comments on the entries they love to help us choose the overall winner,” said Marcy Richardson, Elle’s digital marketing manager.

In a similar vein, Benetton has also utilised the online community in It’s My Time, an online model competition. Like Burberry’s Art of the Trench site, there’s something very compelling, even addictive about looking at and commenting on recently-uploaded pictures of fashion-conscious people – it’s all very relatable and who doesn’t love to voice their opinion in public these days?