In a perfect world, the most-read stories would be the best ones. But alas, Internet, how rarely that is the case.
Of course, a lot of factors determine what stories get read a lot and which don't. When was it published? Did it have a good headline? Did we beat other outlets to the news? Did other publications pick it up? Did we get a good Google News ranking? In fact, while social media played the biggest role in determining what stories performed well on a weekly basis, it was ultimately Google that determined which stories were most read by year's end.
Google aside, there were some trends -- and people -- who captured your attention this year. Korean skincare was huge, nabbing two spots on our top 10 list. Beauty stories in general were big. Kim Kardashian and the Jolie-Pitts continued to fascinate. You were also interested in what fashion jobs really pay as well as runway trends, especially from the fall 2014 season.
Without further ad0, these were the stories that attracted the biggest number of readers in 2014:
1. I Tried Oil Pulling for (Almost) a Week: Here's What Happened. Thanks to Gwyneth Paltrow and Shailene Woodley, oil pulling — an ancient Ayurvedic dental technique that involves swishing a tablespoon of oil in your mouth on an empty stomach for 20 minutes — took off in a big way in 2014, boosting sales of coconut oil to those seeking whiter teeth, fresher breath and a detoxified body. Does it work? We sought professional medical advice, and gave it a try ourselves.
3. Maddie Ziegler of "Dance Moms" Is a High Fashion Tween for Elle. November was also the month we learned what a passionate fan base "Dance Moms" has — as the comments in our story about 12-year-old dance phenom Maddie Ziegler landing an Elle shoot attest.
4. Here's What Happened When I Tried a 12-Step Skincare Regimen. No doubt about it, Korean skincare was the big beauty trend of 2014. Our primarily American audience was especially interested in the extensive skincare regimens of Korean women, as well as the unfamiliar products they use to achieve their storied, flawless skin. Cheryl gave a 12-step, twice-a-day skincare program a spin, and found her skin "looked fabulous."
5. Shiloh Jolie-Pitt Is Really Cute in Her Suit and Tie. We weren't expecting the eldest progeny of Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt to be our next style icon (at eight years old, no less) but damn, can she pull off a suit on the red carpet. Her big blue eyes and of-the-moment, slicked back hair don't hurt, either.
6. We Tried Out 10 Eyebrow Fillers: Here Are the Best. Cara Delevingne may have single-handedly sold tens of thousands of eyebrow-related products this year. We weren't immune to the desire for thicker brows, either. Dhani, who's eyebrows are (in her own words) "relatively sparse," tried out 10 of the most popular eyebrow fillers on the market to see which one gave her the best, most natural results.
7. 5 of Korea's Hottest Beauty Trends and How to Try Them. Like we said, Korean beauty was big this year. We highlighted some of the biggest trends in the category, and the best products to use to try them out.
8. What It Took to Turn Angelina Jolie Into Maleficent. It wasn't just Angelina Jolie's eight-year-old daughter who made headlines this year. The actress's transformation into one of Disney's most storied villains — which required prosthetic cheekbones and a lot of concealer — also generated a lot of interest, and rightly so.
9. How Much Fashion Jobs Really Pay: 2014 Edition. Not surprisingly, you guys were super interested to know how much your peers were getting paid at their jobs, on average — and how much those at the upper echelons are really earning.
10. 19 Key Trends From the Fall 2014 Runways. Pretty pastels, Astrakhan fur — those of you who wanted a quick synopsis of fall 2014 runway trends found it right here.