In an ideal world, the very best stories — the most important and impactful, the most thoroughly reported and compellingly told — would top our most-read list. But this, alas, is the Internet.
A number of factors determine what stories get read a lot and which don't. 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? While many of you come to Fashionista via Facebook, Twitter and our newsletter, it was ultimately Google that determined which stories were most read by year's end.
There were also some topics and trends that captured your attention more than others this year. Interest in Balmain's affordably priced collaboration with H&M topped interest in every other designer collection by a massive margin. New beauty products and categories — from a cool Japanese hair diffuser Cheryl discovered at New York Fashion Week to a Korean beauty explainer to a test-run of popular fluid foundation — all won your clicks. Famous fashion people messing up on Instagram continued to fascinate. And, we were pleased to see, only one story about the Kardashian family made the top 10. That's #progress.
Without further ad0, these were the stories that attracted the biggest number of readers in 2015:
1. Balmain x H&M: See the Full Collection With Prices
Those of you searching for the full Balmain x H&M lookbook this fall landed on this story. (Thanks Google!)
2. The 20 Most Influential Style Bloggers Right Now
For the third year, we ranked the web's most powerful style bloggers based on a combination of factors, including social media following, brand extensions and "It" factor. Many of you were surprised to see Chiara Ferragni, aka The Blonde Salad, at the top of the list.
3. The Kardashian-West Clan Wore White, Bared Midriffs for Easter Church Service
Even after Kim Kardashian-West's nude Paper covers, America's most famous reality TV family proved they still have the ability to shock.
4. The Cool New Japanese Hair Tool We Saw All Over Fashion Week
It's rare that a backstage beauty story cracks the top 10 most-read list during Fashion Month — let alone the whole year. Cheryl noticed that many backstage hairstylists were using a new kind of Japanese diffuser on models' hair, bought her own copy and uncovered what all the fuss was about.
5. Victoria's Secret Fashion Show: See the Full Model Lineup
Victoria's Secret models. Need we say more?
6. We Tested 7 High-Tech Fluid Foundations: Here Are the Best
Following the success of Armani Maestro, dozens of beauty companies launched lightweight fluid foundations, developing a brand new category in the process. We put seven leading formulations to the test.
7. Sephora Finally Launches a Subscription Box Service
Five years after Birchbox launched a $10/month beauty subscription service, Sephora announced its plans to come out with a similar service in 2016. As evidenced in the comments, this is something customers have been asking for for years.
8. Vogue's Elisabeth Von Thurn und Taxis Posts Tasteless Instagram in Paris
While scrolling through Instagram one casual Sunday during Paris Fashion Week, Dhani noticed that Princess (and Vogue contributor) Elisabeth von Thurn und Taxis had posted a photo of a homeless woman reading a copy of Vogue with a humorous caption — which was in questionable taste, to say the least. Most of you agreed it was, too.
9. Marc Jacobs's Accidental Nude Instagram Will Live Forever on the Internet
Nothing gets the clicks like the promise of seeing a famous persons's penis.
10. Korean Skin care: The Difference Between Serums, Essences & Ampoules
Unless you've been living under a rock, you know that Korean beauty products have impacted the Western beautysphere in a big way over the past couple of years. Confused by all the names on the labels? Cheryl breaks them down here.