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February 8, 2018

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If you have been on Instagram for any amount of time, you’ve most likely seen photos tagged with a link or tag. They have been rampant among fashion bloggers for a long time, but over the past 2 years, Reward Style (the affiliate program behind has started bringing on a lot more brands for home–which of course we’re excited about. That’s our niche!

Even still, I feel like there’s some underlying uneasiness, or maybe confusion, around those links, because every time I add them to our Instagram photos, I get a few comments, “I don’t get that like to know it, stuff.” or “It never works for me.” And a lot of people still asking where’s something is from, and I’ve noticed people on other accounts even complaining about them. So I think we should all just talk about it. Because is actually an incredible tool for everyone involved.

First, here’s how works. There’s a special Reward Style app for influencers where we can upload a photo we are going to post to Instagram. From here, we can add all the sources from all the buyable products seen in that photo. Then the app generates a link for us to add to our photos.

That link we add is more like a tracker, really. Anyone who likes the photo (or screenshots it) that has the app, will have instant access to all the sources from that photo in the app. It looks like this on your end:

(Update! If you’d rather not have another app on your phone, you can also just sign up for a account here to have the product sent to your email (you can choose instantly, once a day or even once a week).

Or this:

Each product is a clickable, buyable, direct source link. As someone who loves Instagram for all the inspiration I get from it, I use this tool all the time for all the fashion, beauty and home accounts I follow. Truthfully, I want EVERY photo to be accessible, because even though I never want to ask, “Where is that amazing pillow from!?” I always want to know. And when they tag Wayfair or Etsy…well, that’s just the smallest pin in the biggest haystack.

Let’s talk about money for a second, because I keep wondering, Is that why people don’t like it? The app is free. Doesn’t cost a penny. (Although I would TOTALLY pay to get access to source links instantly, don’t tell them that.) If you do end up buying something linked in the photo we provide, we get a small commission. But it, literally, cost nothing more for you. In fact, affiliate marketing (what Reward Style, and a hundred other programs do) is just a form of marketing that large and small companies work into their budgets, just as they would a television or banner ad.

The reason I started off by saying “It’s an incredible tool for everyone involved,” is because everyone benefits. Users benefit by being able to see something they like and not only knowing where it’s from (needle in a haystack), but having a direct source link! Brands benefit because their product is being shared. Influencers benefit because they receive commissions and no longer have to field, “where is that from?” questions.

I have a ton of personal examples, but here are two recent ones where I used a link on one photo:

And here’s one small snippet of the comments where I didn’t:

50% of comments are questions about sources, although I tagged all the brands seen. While our blog readers know that we always provide links here, as our Instagram audience grows, I see the benefit of attaching links to every photo I can, even if it is more work and time for me initially. Because “the sources are in today’s post!” only applies to that day. Because no matter how long ago I posted a photo, if it has that tag, you can still know instantly by liking it. Because although I try to answer as many questions as possible, sometimes they get buried faster than I see them all. Because I want to connect with you in conversations about more than where something is from. Because those kinds of questions make me feel like a robot–so I’d really like to let an app take over that portion and leave more time and words to connect with you about the why’s and how’s and who’s of what inspires each of us.

I’ll, of course, keep sharing all of our sources here on the blog, but on Instagram, you can find the sources through the app (you can even follow me on the app so you’ll never have to search for a photo from Instagram).

I’d love to hear YOUR thoughts about it. If you aren’t using it, why not? Let’s talk!


ps. If you’re an influencer that doesn’t use or Reward Style, let me know if you’d like to start and I can send you an invitation. You have to apply to be a part of it, and having an invitation sometimes can make the process a little quicker. 




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What do you think?

  1. Sara says:

    I don’t mind the affiliate links at all and commissions going to whomever let me find out about a product, but I find Like to Know it incredibly difficult to use as a follower. I’d much prefer tags on sellable products, though I’m not sure if that is only for products actually sold by that account, not just referred. When I open the app and try to click on things, I often end up just opening up the photo in a new window. I am not sure if I am an idiot about this or what. I’m pretty technically savvy on most computer things. I tried to Google this, but most discussions revolving around Like to Know It are for the Instagrammers/influencers/bloggers, and not the followers/audience, so I can’t figure out if I’m alone in my bad user experience.

  2. Lily Lanigan says:

    Hi there, love your blog – would you be able to send me an invitation?


  3. I would love to have an invitation to it.

  4. Karen says:

    Hi! I’m new to the app and one thing I did notice is that I can’t link certain target items I buy. I was wondering how can I fix it or if you struggle with the same thing?

  5. Ashley says:

    Hi there! I am just starting my public influencer page on Instagram. I have been on the gram for years with a private page where I share family photos. I wanted to share my design and fashion style and am just getting started with @almondmilkandcoffee. I want to be able to use the reward Style and LTKI sites to link products and make commissions. How do I go about doing this? I loved your post about this topic and would appreciate any insights you have for me getting started. Thank you and hope to hear from you soon!

  6. Ana says:

    Lovely article! I was wondering what the difference between the two platforms is. Now i know i need to sign up for rewardstyle to get the influencer access :)

    I’d love to receive an invite code if that’s still an option.

    PS lovely photos on insta bdw!

  7. Thanks for the review. I was doing research before joining and you did a really good job with this post.

  8. Yan says:

    I came across your site because I wanted to learn more about the Likeitotknow app. I’m still a newbie to the whole Instagram platform, and I focus mainly on fashion. I was wondering if we need to have a certain amount of followers or if a blog is needed to partake in the Liketk app. Any advice/ guidance would be much appreciated, and I would love to have an invitation.
    Love your blog and style by the way. Super classy and comfy at the same the same time!


  9. Abby says:

    Love your blog and style. Truly classy! Do you do all the decorating yourself? Are you an interior designer? So cool.

    I’m just getting into rewards style and would love your help / an invitation. I think it would take me to the next level.

    Any help / guidance you can provide would be greatly appreciated. — I’ll follow you now.

    Thank you,

    • Chris says:

      Go ahead and send me an email with your blog address, first and last name, and email address, and I can get you an invite.

      Thanks so much for the kind words! Jules does do all the design and decorating herself.

      I’ll keep an eye out for your email.

  10. Amanda says:

    I would love to be an influencer and have applied, but never heard back. My IG is @livingwithamanda Thank you

  11. Dee says:

    Ive been fascinated about LTKI and I would love an invitation if you still have one! Im in the fitness/workout space but highlight my outfits/lifestyle items on the weekends and get asks for where things are from all the time.

  12. Alma Garci says:

    Hi Julia,

    I utilize RewardStyle and LTKit as well. Your photos look amazing! How do you prevent them from looking blurry on instagram? Every time I upload to instagram from rewardstyle.. it chnages from the original photo. Thanks so much!

  13. heather says:

    Does the influencer have access to see who screenshotted or bought something from their picture?

  14. Jessica says:

    I love this Julia. Thank you. I honestly didn’t quite understand it and it kind of annoyed me because I like tags on the picture. But honestly, I never thought about how “wayfair” or whatever as a tag is not helpful AT ALL. I would not enjoy using the app, but the email I’m down with. Thank you for opening up what seems like a difficult topic and handling it with such grace, as always. You are always so transparent and trustworthy. (A big reason I loved the podcast, RIP, I’ll miss it dearly!! But excited for something new?) Anyway, I feel like I understand it better and would be much more likely to use it. I agree with what another commentor said- I LOVE the swipe up feature. Love you, love your blog and instagram- thank you.

    Also- I’m all for y’all getting paid! You totally should! What y’all provide is awesome and FREE to us.

  15. Erin W says:

    I’m kind of embarrassed to admit this, but the biggest reason I don’t use Like It Know It is I can’t figure out how to easily make the app work without making a screenshot. It’s a hassle to open the app, take a screenshot, upload it to the app and even then something goes wrong. Plus, I end up forgetting to delete the screenshots on my phone, which only adds to the overwhelming amount of digital storage tasks on my to-do list. Haha! I must be doing something wrong… Is there an easier way I can’t figure out?

  16. Linda says:

    I love your style and your blog! And, I’d love to have an invitation to Reward Style/ Thanks!

  17. Chelsea says:

    Oh, I’m with you. It has made it so easy for me to find the exact thing. Especially with home goods, like if you tagged a chair from wayfair I’m like, well, never finding that ever. :) haha so big fan over here!

  18. Lena S. says:

    I think my issue with LTKi deals with how unnecessary and extra a lot of the links are becoming. I’ve seen influencers link their bra, panties, socks, and even a box of hair dye! The one time I was going to use it to purchase a rug, the blogger included an outfit inspired by the rug! I unfollowed one of my favorite bloggers a few weeks ago because every photo she posted on IG since the beginning of the year included a LTKi link. I am all for influencers making money, but there has to be some type of balance. I like that you all go between tagging the photo and using LTKi.

    Maybe on IG, you all could explain how to use LTKi? Some people are new to social media and truly do not understand how it works. Also, if there are no tags nor LTKi with the photo, explain why in the caption. I read a few home design blogs who do not include tags/links on certain photos because the items are specifically for their client(s) or it was a paid partnership. They usually disclose this in the caption which cuts down on a lot of the “where is x from?” questions. It also keeps people from arguing in the comments because I have seen comment sections become a royal rumble when someone is upset that a blogger will not reveal sources.

  19. Kristen Williams says:

    I think the problem comes in when influencers link to “similar” product but not the real product in picture. Often the influencer does not differentiate that the item is similar but not exact. This happens a lot with clothing because clothes go out of stock fairly quickly. It feels misleading.

  20. April Cylwik says:

    I don’t use LTKI because I know that I’m tempted to spend beyond my budget when I have a direct link, ha! That being said, I am ALL ABOUT bloggers and small buisnesses being rewarded for thier hard work! I’m a digital content ghost writer, so y’all go get yourself a piece of the pie!! LTKI is an incredible tool. I just know that for me, I end up overspending when I know exactly from where something is sourced. For myslef, I love Instagram for inspiration. My home doesn’t have the exact same layout or identical as any of the bloggers I follow, but I love that. I see the inspiration on many feeds and I adapt it to my family’s needs, style and butget to make it our own. Your table might be from CB2 or Wayfair and mine might be from IKEA or Goodwill, but I got the provelidge to see yours first and be inspired by it! The visual catalogue Instagram allows us to create is incredible and I’m so thankful for people like you and Chris who are willing to share a slice of your life with the rest of us on the interwebs. <3

    • April Cylwik says:

      Goodness, so many typos. This is what happens when you type a reply from your iPhone using only your right thumb while doing a midnight feed for your baby, ha! =)

  21. Sarah G says:

    I love LTKI! I used to be super annoyed by it because it stopped working for me when I changed my instagram handle and I could never get the emails to work again. Then I discovered the app and I like it a lot more because it works faster. Like some others have mentioned, I get annoyed when items that are “similar” but not really that similar are linked in place of the original item because I don’t find it very useful and it feels sales-y (sometimes similar is OK and sometimes it’s a joke). But I am A-OK with influencers selling me things when they are creating beautiful content because they find and use things in ways that I wouldn’t think of and while saving me time shopping. Almost everything that is promoted in a magazine gets there the same way it gets on social media or a blog. I have to pay for that content and they don’t necessarily show me how to use it and no one is on the other end responding to questions about it. Thanks for such an interesting discussion topic!

  22. Jenn Bravo says:

    Hey friend! So I thought I’d join the discussion because I have a reason I don’t use LTKI. But first I want to say that I think bloggers and influencers should 100% be rewarded for their work, time, energy, opinions, etc. And as someone who doesn’t consider herself an influencer, but has been paid by a major brand under the title of “influencer”, I completely understand the value of brand support and affiliate links. I simply don’t use that app/feature because I’m more interested in learning about small brands and artisan goods through influencers online. Because that’s really the only place to learn about artisan goods or small brands unless they’re local. I personally feel confident in my ability to pick what I like at say Target without help, and actually never order these products online because I’m not shopping for them there. If I’m physically at Target and I happen to see a vase that I really really like right there in person, I may buy it but not because I saw it online first. However, it’s the small businesses/artisan goods that I’m truly curious to learn about and would 100% click through and buy a product with the help of an influencer. I guess you could say that this puts me in the group that just doesn’t personally like buying mass-produced goods too frequently? And I really want to spend my dollars more wisely when it comes to fashion and decor. The conundrum is that I WANT to support bloggers, because I consider them small business, it’s just harder for bloggers to receive monetary compensation for these artisan goods. Anyway, thought I’d join the discussion and let you know as one of your readers/followers why I am not using that specific app!

  23. Brooke says:

    Sorry if this has been covered but has anyone discussed using this as a way to get more likes = more engagement for the Instagram algorithm? It seems like a good way to get more likes, a lot like asking a question in the caption is a way to get more comments. Are these “likes” different? I don’t have a problem with it either way, just genuinely curious!

  24. Amanda Schulz says:

    More like I use the tags for inspiration, but never have I been able to afford one single article of clothing that has been linked. Following the links I just end up feeling sad and poor. Its absurd. Please, someone point me in the direction of the like to know it IG page for those of us who live in the real world and cant spend $300 on a top. Id be afraid to even attempt to start following the tags for housewares.

  25. Sunny Andersson says:

    People clear your cookies before buying anything online!
    You want to make your amazon purchase of deodorant and household goods but earlier some blogger made you click on a link instead of naming the product ( I’m looking at you K8, she numbers every product so you have to click on hairspray#3 to see what it is) and boom she gets a commission that amazon purchase, something she had no influencing on.

    This is why every bloggers husband no longer works. Think about it.

    So if you HAVE to know where Julia got her vase or whatever instead of googling a few descriptive words to find it then you’re a perfect candidate get bombarded with emails for similar products.

    I get that it’s easier to link to it and make some commissions than answer 100 questions. But some greedy bloggers made like to know it feel too gross to use.
    Thanks for letting me get that off my chest :)

    • Julia says:

      I think that MOST bloggers, at least try to put forth something of value. And I, personally, don’t read any blogs that require me to pay to read them. I am just wondering what you think would be the best way to sustain these sites?

      So, “K8” (I’m not sure who you’re referring to, but we’ll go with it) sends you somewhere where you are interested in hairspray that she recommends. Let’s say you don’t buy that hairspray. But in a week or so, you remember you need deodorant. You buy it. K8 makes 5 cents. You are supporting a blog that you read without spending money you weren’t already going to spend. That sounds like a really great deal all around.

      • Oscar says:

        I don’t understand why it’s ok to make a brand like, let’s say…Starbucks, tons of money by buying their brands and it’s not ok to help out someone like a blogger that in a way is a small business and works their butt off to create content and gives opinions on product, and writes, and photographs, and cleans, and provides real information to people who are sincerely interested in the product they feature?? In my opinion, I think bloggers deserve more! The commission that bloggers get are cents! It’s little, but it helps create more content which the audience benefits from. As a consumer, I definitely trust the opinion of a blogger vs. The opinion of a commercial I see on TV

      • Julia says:

        Thank you, Oscar!

      • Sunny Andersson says:

        l think clicks and general traffic sustain a website. You have gotten many many free products (flooring, kitchen appliances, couches and l bet 80% of your renovations and redecorating was gifted to you one way or another ) just because you have a following.
        You have ads on your blog and most websites that require payment cut those out.
        I understand that you work hard and no one is denying that but bloggers are notoriously sneaky about affiliate links weather it’s disclosing them or acting like they don’t benefit from them and it’s left a bad taste as a reader.
        Btw l was talking about Kate Bryan @smallthingsblog and I have stopped reading her blog.
        She affiliate linked cheese once for goodness sake and that was the final straw for me.

      • Sarah G says:

        Clicks and traffic don’t sustain a website anymore. They used to be more valuable but the price that companies pay for ads is very slim compared to what it was 8-10 years ago. Getting gifted goods and discounts on renovations are useful but they aren’t cash income to pay to feed your children. I haven’t found the blogs that I read to be particularly “sneaky”. I think they use numbers because they work graphically (how many different ways can you label a pillow if you use descriptions?) and the allow you create an image compilation separately from a caption. Good bloggers (like this one) know there’s a fine line between promoting products and diluting their own brand. I’m happy to help them make a little extra money in exchange for the value they provide me every day.

  26. Erin says:

    I honestly don’t like having my Instagram feed become a shopping app and have really valued following more authentic people over business and those trying to sell sell sell in their feeds. I am personally put off By LTKI because most of the time is a picture with the product and no value able review or though behind it. it’s simply a push to get you to buy the product and it’s not insightful. I agree that repeat comments about where things are are annoying and I don’t mind the link in a post but if you are specifically talking about a product in the caption I don’t like not simply telling people where to get it. I hate the “…and like to know it clif hanger. If you need to make money off the affiliate I would rather you do it through the blog and use your site as the middleman instead of LTKI. I don’t think you will convert me on this one sorry.

  27. Denise says:

    I don’t understand why people care about something you make money from when it in fact costs them nothing.

    I follow you because I like your style choices and appreciate it when you tell me where something is from, just as with all the other blogs I follow. Glad to know you make some money from it, means you can continue providing me with interesting content that I enjoy. You telling me where something came from does not make me overspend/overbuy, that is called poor impulse control and lack of common sense.

    However, I just don’t care for LTKI in general but swipe up on Instagram is the best :)

  28. I love sources as much as the next girl but it hasn’t worked for me (suddenly I don’t get emails. Anymore.) and I also get SO MANY emails that I don’t love that delivery. But I also don’t need yet another app on my phone. And thirdly your budget is way more exciting than mine ???? so I don’t need to constantly be tempted to buy stuff I can’t afford. Those are the reasons I don’t use/love like to know it.

  29. Luxie says:

    I’m not a fan of how secretive (is this right? English isn’t my first language I am trusting my translator app) affiliated links are. You say you make a small commission, how small? How Much did you collect last month off of links you posted verses purchases people made after the fact, on unrelated items because of cookies. I understand not having an exact number but I would guess when linking to amazon or the other seven stores all the bloggers shop at equals quite a lot. So in fact you are just in a loop of earning credit, buying items, linking and earning more credit etc etc. Your viewers don’t have that endless income and that level of consumerism is appalling. You just don’t need another made in Twain target blanket.

    A couple other points that were already mentioned. The privacy you are giving up and allowing others to benefit from is scary. And I don’t want to know where everything is from. I don’t want my house to be exactly like your house. I just want to be inspired and/or entertained.

    Personally I’ve given up following any influencers on instagram. It just one commercial after another of loving this over and over.

    • Cason says:

      Oh…that is kinda sketchy…making money on people’s purchases after the fact that are totally unrelated to what the blogger’s original post was about.

  30. Kristi says:

    I guess I’ve just never understood why tagging the photo with sources isn’t sufficient? If I like a rug and it’s tagged West Elm, it takes me under a minute to locate that product on their site. Wayfair is slightly more cumbersome, but even most notable Etsy shops have individual Instagram pages that can be tagged. It just seems to me that bloggers prefer using because they get income from it. WHICH IS FINE! I just wish people would say that? I find myself unfollowing people more and more because it all comes off as so disingenuous.

  31. Alex E. says:

    I LOVE now that it’s an app, but I hated it when email was the only option. I especially like the app now that you can now see home-based influencers and there’s an area in the app where I can see recent posts from my favorite bloggers and influencers.

  32. Katie says:

    I’m actually a big fan of I have an email address that I use for most of my online shopping (so it’s often filled with sale notices and stuff), and I just direct the app to send my likes there. That way it doesn’t clutter my other email inboxes (personal, work, blogging, etc.). I think it’s a huge time saver (for me and the blogger). If I’m having a busy day, I just delete all the emails in one sweep. No biggie. As far as it tracking my data… yeah I’m sure it does. But there are trade offs with everything. So does google. I still google. ????????‍♀️ And Julia… if you are tossing them out… I would love an invite to RewardStyle!

  33. Dani says:

    Julia, to me you are an influencer in multiple aspects. I love knowing what you wear and am curious about it. I have bought two shirts (in addition to a whole lot of home stuff) because of you. So, I want to hear about everything you recommend. Why? Because I trust your eye, and I like your style.

    So, whether it’s on Insta/, on the blog, or on the podcast, I enjoy seeing what you’re into.

  34. Courtney says:

    Thank you! I didn’t really understand how it works, and this was a great tutorial. I’ve managed brand social media accounts, not for shopping related so Like to Know it wasn’t relevant, but I understand how overwhelming/annoying answering the same question over and over and over again is, so anything that takes that stress off you so you can do more of why we love you is totally worth it. Thanks for the explanation, and for ALL THAT YOU DO!!

  35. abby says:

    My only issue with Like to Know It is when bloggers/instagrammers use it for things that are NOT in line with, or don’t make sense with, their brand. I do NOT like the steps you have to take to get a source ID, so I myself no longer have the app. But, speaking from my experience while I did use it, I was not bothered by a home design blogger linking to pillows/furniture/etc. I was bothered when they took an opportunity to link everything in the picture, no matter how unrelated to their brand (a water filter, etc.). I honestly can’t remember if you’ve done this, so I’m not pointing a finger at you–just noting my only beef with it. I do, however, remember you doing a swipe up affiliate link to some earrings you bought from J. Crew Factory, and that really bothered me. I thought, do you really need to profit off of the $9.99 earrings you bought given your home design/decor brand? Could you not just tell your faithful readers (in the caption) that your new cute earrings were from J. Crew Factory? We are all savvy enough to locate that specific pair of earrings without needing a direct link. To me, it felt like the boundaries were being pushed. So, I guess my issue is with home design bloggers linking to clothing, etc. Related to that, IT IS SO OBVIOUS when people hold the camera at a certain angle to “coincidentally” capture the really cute shirt or boots they are wearing while they talk about something unrelated, as they clearly want their story followers to ask them where they got it. Then they can conveniently do a swipe up link a few stories later. Trust me, the camera angle is beyond obvious–I can call a “swipe up” link coming the second I see the angle. And, yes, I probably WOULD like to know where that shirt’s from, but if you’re not a fashion blogger, it is really necessary to profit off telling me where it’s from? Sometimes I imagine if I did that in real life with any person or friend who asked me where I got something–“if you pay me a few bucks as a commission for sourcing it for you, I will tell you.” The concept just doesn’t sit right. Anyways, I’m not trying to come down on you or any other bloggers in a rude way–I’m truly a huge fan and always will be! But, you asked, so I am putting my two cents in on where the appropriate line should be drawn! Who knows, maybe one of these days I will come back to like to know it…

    • Julia says:

      There is a difference between and swipe ups and links on other platforms. They aren’t the same thing, but I appreciate your thoughts on links.

      • Jennifer says:

        Swipe up links in stories to non-home decor items don’t bother me at all! In fact I love them. If I’m not interested, it’s one tap to move on. But if I am interested, swiping up is so much easier than finding the item myself! I have bought a couple of things from a link you posted in stories, and the cardigan or whatever cost me the same either way, so if you can get a bit of income from me clicking the link that you took the time to post, then good for you!

      • Jane says:

        It doesn’t bother me at all! I appreciate getting a direct link to something I want to shop over having to scour the web. I also think it’s important for people to remember that the purpose of the affiliate link isn’t all about getting a tiny bit of income from J.Crew – it’s about being able to track where that sale came from and being able to quantify your influence – which does not bother me AT ALL. After all, it’s your job! Love your style, love your home – as a wannabe interior designer, loved today’s podcast!

    • Meghan says:

      I only use as a consumer, I’m not an influencer so I don’t know that side of things- but I know if you search for the link on your own you pay the same price as if you would if you click the link from So the “commission” doesn’t come your pocket at all. And I think influencers (esp Julia!) have put a lot of time into hunting down beautiful sources- so I think its great they get a little perk for hours spent searching for the perfect pieces! Additionally, I find most bloggers I follow because I love their home style also have a similar vibe to their fashion, and I’m often grateful to know where certain articles of clothing came from– even if that’s not why I follow them. Love and Julia’s account especially!

      • Kristen says:

        I feel exactly the same! I don’t understand the outrage people feel about a link added to an instagram post. How does that trouble anybody? I didn’t realize (probably naively) that influencers got a commission from LTKi – when I read that my only thought was, “Oh! Good for them!”

    • Vanessa Lentine says:

      I find this comment so interesting… particularity the part about paying a few bucks to know where something is from. With LTKI, the consumer ISN’T paying anything extra. You’re literally getting offered information on a daily basis free of charge. You can take it or leave it. Influencers/bloggers spend so much time curating content on their channels and they don’t charge their followers for the info… so the influencer getting a kickback from a brand seems like a logical way to compensate them for their time and effort.

    • Sarah G says:

      I’ve personally purchased two shirts because Julia linked to them in her instastories and I would way rather have the link than a caption that requires me to google. That’s just one more step for me and I would consider it kind of a hassle. I don’t think interior/home bloggers are barred from linking to their outfits on social media. I think of it more like I see a stranger at a restaurant and I LOVE her shoes but I don’t want to randomly approach someone I don’t know and ask her where she got her shoes. Now I have the technology to source her shoes without it bothering her at all, and she gets paid a little money for wearing those cute shoes. And the company just made money too. Everybody wins.

  36. Kara D says:

    I would be in the group of those who don’t like it.
    I don’t want yet another email. And I’m not a big fan of the idea of having to download yet another app on my phone. I treat my phone like my house, I try to be mindful what I bring in my phone/home.

    If I did sign up for it, I can then see myself choosing NOT to like a photo just because I don’t want the extra information always coming at me.

    I want to like a photo because:
    1. I want you to know that I truly did like it.
    2. To keep up with the Instagram algorithm to keep showing your photos in my feed.

    Not necessarily because I want to know a source of something.

    I can understand the appeal of it, since there are the occasional times when I do want to know the source, I wish it was a separate thing to find out the sources without having to like a photo – that would solve it for me.

    • Helena says:

      I agree!

    • Caitlin says:

      Exactly, I don’t like LTKI because it’s yet another app and yet another step. But at the same time– if someone posts LTKI links/sourcing, I just choose not to follow through or make that purchase. So if someone else is going to click through and make those purchases still, then I guess it’s worthwhile nonetheless.

  37. Jude says:

    Hey! Thank you for sharing about this – super helpful info. It’s something I’ve been thinking about but hadn’t really had the chance to research myself. I would love an invite please :)

  38. Cate says:

    What an incredibly beautiful explanation! It’s totaly win-win. I would LOVE an invite! I have applied to Reward Style, but wasn’t accepted.

  39. Kate Oh says:

    The only reason I don’t like it is because when fashion bloggers use it, it rarely links us to the exact same piece. Oftentimes , it links me to a very slightly similar piece that looks nothing like the original post so I would never be inclined to buy it through the link. I see though that your links are pretty exact to the the tee. Kudos.

  40. Kathy says:

    Honestly, the comments on instagram about “where did you get this, I need details on that” are seriously eye-roll inducing, so if using liketoknowit solves this for you, I am all for it. At the office, people often times ask me or some of my other coworkers things that you can easily find out through a quick google search, and it’s gotten to the point where we flatly answer them, “did you want me to google that for you?” You have the patience of a saint, because when I started, my cube mate was already saying that and within two months, I was too. Just… we are not search engines, we are engineers. If it were an engineering question, that’s one thing but it’s usually something that you can do yourself, you just don’t want to. Well, I kind of feel like this is the same thing. You’re not an index for your blog, you’re the blogger! People ask you because they don’t want to be bothered to search your blog or whatever for the source, so if you can just point them to a page that gives them all the sources… I mean, that seems so obvious!

    • Julia says:

      One of my best friends is notorious for saying, “Do you want me to google that for you?” And I laugh every time because it’s usually in response to someone asking where something is.

  41. I use the LTKI and get sent an email with the link/sources. I do agree with one commenter that it is slightly annoying when I like a pic but don’t necessarily interested in the products (just sending out some love for the pic)! But, its a simple delete ???? I will check out the app and would be really interested in both the rewards style on LTKI for myself. I’m creating a blog and plan to launch in late March that includes home decor, clothing and self care, essential oils and life in general. Would love if you could send an invitation! Thanks for this post!

  42. Kristen says:

    This post is so interesting to me! I work in the design industry so I mostly follow interior designers (you’re the only blogger/influencer I follow). It always amazes me how many people ask designers to list their sources. A designer’s income comes from clients who pay them, so to ask them for sources is essentially asking them to give away their work for free. I’ve seen so many designers try to thoughtfully and carefully explain what a ‘full service client’ is and that it would be disrespectful to their client (who probably paid thousands to have a unique room designed for them) to give away the sources. I’ve always been shocked by how rude people can get if sources aren’t given, as if they are entitled to them.
    But reading this helps me to understand. I didn’t realize influencers can profit from Instagram (which they should as their income comes from sponsers). So I can see how if someone follows a lot influencers it would seem normal to get a source list, and not being provided with sources would seem rude. At the same time if someone follows a lot of designers for inspiration, links to products may seem pushy.
    I think as followers if we’re mindful of who we’re following (designer/influencer) and what their source of income is, their decision of how (or if ) they choose to source products will make more sense. Thanks for your transparency!

  43. Sonya says:

    Interesting article to understand how this works and I can understand why you use it. Thank you for all of the inspiration and information that you provide.

    However, I do have an issue with your emails loading and it has something to do with rewardstyle. They will sit forever with a rewardstyle message bar that says it is loading and I can’t read your email. Not all of your emails do it, but quite a few do.

  44. Karen says:

    Hello! An interesting topic but I think a major element is missing from the discussion. Your post mentions LTKI is free, but that’s only in a financial sense. There’s always a cost – and in this case there tolls to pay in the form of data sharing and privacy. If you read LTKI’s privacy policy, they collect an insane amount of data on you (including personally identifiable details such as email and phone #), and map it to your online browsing habits and even create a thumbprint of your device. All this data is monetized by LTKI, so readers need to know the worth of their personal information and the trail they leave with data crumbs… your data is priceless, and giving LTKI access may not be worth the cost.

  45. Paige says:

    I have no problem with LikeToKnowIt for the exact reasons you outlined! My following is much smaller than yours and I tend to do more client-based work instead of web-based, but MAN do I still get a lot of questions about where things are from. I can’t even imagine how crazy it is on your end. :-)

    Anyway, if you’re sending invitations to RewardStyle, I’d love one.

  46. Beth Ann says:

    My #1 reason for not installing an App or using the email is tracking. I work in big data. It is scary to me how much information exists about individuals, what can be assumed (and it is scarily accurate) and how it can be used. No thank you.

  47. Shelby says:

    A few thoughts that give me pause


    A few thoughts for reflection.

    Personal responsibility
    Self governance

    The app is a tool and it’s up to each individual to evaluate if the tool is being used rightly in their life. In addition we get to choose who we allow access to influence our thinking.

    Love that you raised this topic for discussion!

  48. We’ve been looking at several options for making our Instagram ‘shoppable’ but haven’t pulled the trigger on yet. We’d love an invite to that + Reward Style

  49. Jae Rene says:

    It’s funny, I’m all for the tags and the app! I use it quite often on your posts and other home decor posts! But sometimes I don’t mind the hunt of just a brand is tagged. I also find other items from that brand when hunting that I wouldn’t have known about either! Which I guess doesn’t necessarily help my wallet!!! :):)

  50. Sarah says:

    ‘ve been signed up to receive LTKI emails for a long time and do find it to be useful. But here’s what bothers me and where I think it gets dangerous. First, it pushes a mentality of consumerism (buy, buy, buy). Second, my biggest gripe, is that it pushes mass items that are homogeneous. Where’s the fun (and inspiration) in that? I use ‘dangerous’ because I do think homogeneity drives a wedge into our culture (I mean, today’s backlash against immigrants is a prime example of wanting homogeneity). What’s so unique anymore about items purchased on Wayfair, Westelm, Pottery Barn, Old Navy, Nordstrom (and I say this about places I shop frequently)? I find that most bloggers who use LTKI have similar ascetics. Everyone has the same rugs, couches, etc. or similar variations. I know that you have asked about it as a tool, but I think it’s so important to have a broader perspective. Just because it’s ‘helpful’ doesn’t mean that it doesn’t have other effects. And, quite frankly, we can’t afford to ignore the implications (and I’m not speaking of LTKI only — I mean as consumers and people living on this planet).

    The home designers I find inspiring are finding unique pieces and inspiring me to do the same. What’s going to be unique about a mass-market print in 20 years if everyone has the same one? Nothing.

    I struggled with whether to chime in because I generally don’t comment on blogs and I am not sure that if I met you, that I would share this feedback. But, you asked and I find that you come across as very genuine and I appreciate that you want to hear from readers and followers. I follow you because you have great ideas and inspire me to spruce up areas of my home. But, I don’t want my home to be just like yours.

    • Jane says:

      I totally agree with your comment! The more I follow influencers and designers, the more I want to shop vintage or from a small business so that my home is personal and unique. (Speaking of small businesses – I like supporting bloggers as well).

      I think the consumerism of it all can get scary (by the way, at times I’m a complete hypocrite and love finding something a blogger has… and may or may not have that West Elm coffee table everyone has, it’s just so pretty!). But I find conversations like this one interesting.

  51. Cara says:

    I haven’t read through the comments on this post but here’s my two cents:) I have liketoknowit and enjoy getting the emails to sources that I truly want information about but on the other hand I sometimes just want to like a photo because it’s a pretty photo and I want to support the influencer. With that being said I HATE getting a ton of emails, therefore I find myself not liking every “pretty” photo if I don’t need the sources because then the sources I DO want get lost in the shuffle. Does that makes sense? I follow quite a few people on instagram for inspiration so if I were to get sources for EVERY “like,” my emails would be out of control and then I’d have to sift through the app to find what I really wanted information about. I wish there was a way to like any photo you want without getting the sources emailed to you every time. I’m not sure how that would work but it would make me engage more and appreciate the app more. It’s all too much sometimes because EVERYONE is using liketoknowit:) Too much info coming in is just as bad as not enough and other than the algorithm I think this could be contributing to less engagement overall across all influencer boards, in my opinion. Thanks for the information and transparency.

    • Julia says:

      I honestly think that they created the app to combat the email explosion issue people dont like. Maybe there isn’t a perfect solution yet.

      • Elizabeth says:

        Cara – you raised some really great points. I ran into a similar frustration too of not wanting to receive emails for every photo I’ve liked. There is an option to turn off your LTK emails if you would prefer to not receive them and instead just use the app to receive product sources.

    • Elyse says:

      Hey Cara, this is the EXACT reason I stopped using LKTKI. It’s hard to remember not to “like” everything I want to like, so I do, and then everything is the app is too overwhelming that I just ended up deleting my account. I love the idea of it, but I’m not sure the functionalty is quite there. I am SURE instagram is working on a way to link information like this so they can #monetizemore, but until then, I’ll just keep searching the comments or link clicking in bio to figure it out.

  52. Stacy G. says:

    Thank you for opening up this conversation about LTKI. It has been thought-provoking and beneficial to read through the replies from your commenters and you, Julia. I have learned a lot.

  53. Julie says:

    I love it when you use Like To Know It! I think about it as a short cut to Julia-approved items. Feels only right that you should get a commission for the things you recommend to others. Please keep using it!

  54. Erin P says:

    Just a note to say I’ve never felt like you’re pushing sales. I am a grateful reader that pays nothing for all of the endless inspiration you’ve provided me with. I do love to see sources and have been completely confused by the liketoknowit situation so thank you for shedding some light. I’ve seen mixed reviews on the app but without whether or not I decide to sign up…I know that my ability to get sources from you (or inability) is not what will keep me reading and following…it’s you and your content! The sources are just a bonus. I am not a blogger but I can see where you all must just feel like source robots & it must be hard (many people are almost rude and demanding of the information). I could go on but the main point is to make sure you know you’re appreciated…sources or not! So thank you!

    • Julia says:

      Thanks so much Erin!

      • mary says:

        I agree with Erin P. completely. I really enjoy your content and am also grateful for all the inspo and fun.

        As an aside, I’ve noticed many times that you’re really patient on instagram when several different people ask you the same question about a source that you’ve already answered because they haven’t scanned the comments. So I see where you’re coming from with this post.

    • Rachael says:

      Completely agree with this sentiment. Although – I did sign up for the emails (I like to keep my apps limited) and have greatly appreciated the sources being literally delivered to me personally.

      I’ve found myself paraphrasing Preston many times while reading my favorite blogs or scrolling on Instagram… “I can’t believe this is a free podcast/blog/app/tool”. I get so much from you guys (all bloggers/influencers) and have to give nothing in return except my time, (which, let’s be honest here I am happy to give because I enjoy the content)!

  55. Lynette says:

    Biggest problem, and many many others have told me the same, IT ( the like to know it) DOES NOT EVER WORK! Even if you have the app

  56. KB says:

    I’ve long wondered why people don’t sign up for it, but maybe there are just misconceptions about it. I’ve had it for years — just via email — and it really is such a useful tool! The daily emails with direct links to the products I’m looking for are a game changer. So glad to hear you’ll be using it all the time too!!

  57. Mary + Tim says:

    Love your business posts and podcasts. We haven’t used like to know it but have been interested in learning more about Reward Style as a blogging tool. If you still have invitations to send, we’d love to make it on your list!

  58. Lisa says:

    I have not downloaded the app, really because I prefer receiving the emails. I cannot afford to purchase impulsively, but I appreciate that I can click on the picture of the item in the email and it will take me right to the product and I can find out where I can buy it from and how much. If it is something I i need to save up for, or wait to see if there are any sales, I will save the email, and go back to it when I am ready. If I feel it’s not worth it, or I don’t really need it, swipe and delete.

    I am also about working smarter not harder. If this saves you (or any other IG influencer) from having to answer the same question over and over again, I say go for it!! And if you can get a little something for advertising a product that you actually used and loved then I say that’s a win!!

  59. Erica says:

    I signed up for LTKI and receive the emails. I HATE getting all the emails. Sometimes I like a picture because I genuinely just like the picture, not necessarily wanting product info (resulting in unwanted ltki emails).

    I wonder if that’s why people don’t “like” pics as often?
    I didn’t download the app because I’m already just annoyed with the whole process.

    I liked it back in the day when influencers just tagged the item with the brand…cause sometimes that’s all I want to know, or need to know ignorance an item in my budget.

  60. Mandy says:

    At first I didn’t like the app because when I saw Instagrammers post with it, I didn’t know what it was! I think you explained it on the podcast a while back, and that’s when it clicked for me. I finally downloaded it. But even still, the quality seems to vary greatly from on IG post to another. Some influencers only tag a couple items in their photo, or it is all “look-a-likes” and not the real thing. I’ve always been happy with your tags though, so thank you for making it so easy!

    • Jae Rene says:

      Some brands or websites don’t do business with LTK basically. So that’s why influencers/bloggers tag something similar from a website that participates with LTK or don’t tag all of the items.

      • Belinda says:

        But here’s where the win win win stops, the bloggers are only sharing sources if they get commission. I don’t mind this, but let’s not pretend that influencers are sharing on like it to know it out of the goodness of their hearts when actually it’s cold hard cash.

      • Julia says:

        Do you think it is unfair for bloggers to make a commission on sharing their sources?

      • Katie says:

        No, but I think it’s unfair to make a commission on an item that isn’t actually the product used (and not something the person has actually used/can give a recommendation for). If it’s just a “similar” item, it’s not actually their source!

      • Julia says:

        I can see that.

  61. Kathleen says:

    LTK seems like a great idea, but I mentally dipped out when 90% of the apparel sources are from Nordstrom. I’m still convinced that LTK is a genius marketing scheme from Nordstrom’s marketing department, but from a consumer standpoint that puts a bad taste in my mouth – I want genuine content, not an ad campaign.

    Also, expensive much?? Who is their target audience and how are they able to buy $300 scarves and $600 day dresses? It’s all high fashion designer labels which is not relatable for my lifestyle. Not sure if this problem would cross over in home decor items TBH. And a lot of the items they source are not the same ones in the photo.

    • Julia says:

      $600 day dresses gives me heart palpitations.

    • Phoua says:

      I’m so glad you mentioned the price of the items issue. I LOVE direct links to products, but I’m a grad student with a measly income and although I love the product, it’s just to expensive for my budget. I would love it if influencers would also tag similar, low end “dupes.” This will definitely make LTIK links more relatable to my lifestyle.

    • KB says:

      Doesn’t this have everything to do with who you’re following? I get plenty of LTK links from other sources are they are definitely much more affordable products…

    • Brianne says:

      I think you should try following some people whose budgets align more with yours. I get plenty of Loft and Target finds in mine after I STOPPED following people who seemed to only wear crazy high end clothes like you mentioned. I never knew how far out of reach their daily outfits were until they started using the app. That was just depressing!!

  62. Pam says:

    I didn’t really get what it was and never took the time to look. So thank you. I’m downloading the app right now.

  63. I would absolutely love Like to Know It, but most links seem to be to similar but not the same items. So frustrating.

  64. Michelle says:

    I have not signed up, and never see myself doing so, for LTK app for the sole reason that I really really really don’t need another venue to find/shop/buy/spend money/throw something else out just because I’m drawn in by an influencer on Instagram. I’ve already eliminated every other social media feed on my phone but that one just to try to calm things down and do not want to enlist another service to send me emails about products to buy. I also tap through basically all instagram stories that have a “Swipe Up!” listed on them. I just freaking hate that. I understand it’s a business, but I feel like all everything is moving towards is, “buy this!” “swipe up!” “read my post to learn where to buy this!” “Swipe up!”. If social media is really directed down an avenue to work on the human connection I feel that’s better served as Chris does it with cooking and others do it educating about adoption or really… just sharing a glimpse of life. Some sales stuff is expected, but I wish the other content outweighed it.

    I am a huge online shopper, always looking for inspiration and prefer online over in-person shopping and stores. I just like to do it where and when I want and not read one more sales email. I do always go to your blog posts for sources and if I can’t find something that I am just so tickled by I can’t wait, there’s reverse image searches as well as just going to your go-to’s. And really, most of the time I don’t actually want to the same item that you have (I’m not trying to be you), but I get inspired to shop for something similar and create a space of my own.

    With all that I say, keep it going and for those of us who choose not to sign up… well, we don’t! And if you’re a reader or follower of any sort and don’t know that the paint color is Benjamin Moore Hazy Skies then TACOS to you!

  65. Irene says:

    I really wish I could just tap an item I like in a photo to get the link. LTKI is just an example of obtrusive technology. It doesn’t feel like it’s making my life easier and it’s very loud when it should be invisible. I have no problem with someone with great taste making a commission on their recommendations. I just wish it was a more seamless user experience.

    • Zoe says:

      Yeah, but that’s on Instagram. Basically, LTKI is just one giant workaround because Instagram doesn’t allow direct linking.

  66. jill says:

    A few times I went to get a LTKI account but each time the bit where I had to agree to allow LTKI access to the names and profile pictures of my Instagram friends and my friend’s profile information felt like such a sellout to me. It’s one thing to give them MY information but to gather my friends as well seemed like I was using my friends to gain something that I wanted (because LTKI is somehow using the information I’m agreeing to give them regarding my friends to LTKI’s advantage). I scour posts (and if they have a blog) for source information before I ever reach out for information and I absolutely buy through affiliate links when available (last fall I read CLJ’s favorite painting supplies post and purchased every roller, handle, tape etc through your link). I have quit following the accounts who use their stories to constantly offer the swipe up feature as they hawk every last thing, that’s not why I come to Instagram and watch the stories, I want inspiration and content not a commercial, if I want to watch commercials I’ll turn on the television.

  67. Jenna says:

    I really love the whole idea behind the app but I just don’t use it anymore because clicking the links causes it to crash ALL THE TIME. Hopefully future updates can resolve that.

  68. Candace says:

    I don’t realize there was the app portion- I remember in the beginning it was an email. The last thing I need in my life is another freaking email.

    I saw another comment about inspiration. That is more how I use photos. A quick scan of sources will confirm if there’s anything new I’m not aware of. I’m more likely to pin something as inspiration or source, to review and but later, than to see something on Instagram and run out to but it. I’m not that impulsive and try to intentionally plan a room. All that being said, I see the intended use of LITKI, but I don’t know that it’s something that will ever be completely accepted by all.

    I have been trying to actively Like posts more, recently. Whatever algorithm or feedback that gives to the content and bloggers I follow, great! In general, trying to be more active to support those I want to continue seeing. But, does this mean that if I’m liking the style of a post then my LITKI app will be clogged up?

    • Candace says:

      To add: I follow you guys everywhere #notacreep. If I want to find the source, I can find it from your blog or by Google. Soooooo… That.

  69. Victoria says:

    I personally don’t use it, but only because I’m super cheap and hardly ever buy anything???? tagging a big brand on a photo is not helpful as you still have to search their entire site. And until instagram lets you embed links like in stories it feels like the best option. It drives me crazy seeing people ask you the same things over again, I can’t even imagine what it’s like to have to answer them all. ????????????

  70. Erin K says:

    I’m a graphic designer that used to work in mobile advertising for a few years. I can easily tell you, the moment the word “advertising” is mentioned, most people tune out. It’s something our society has collectively decided is enemy number one. I have never used (I’m slow at adopting new apps) but maybe they have had other influencers abuse it and now it has this negative “money grabbing” connotation. If it wasn’t for that, this seems to have all the things most people would prefer advertising to be like: filtered content they chose (following you), option to continue along, or complete control to investigate further on even more filtered content (that specific photo). I think something that has always been overlooked in the advertising conversation, is how advertising is what helps provide all this FREE content we have come to expect. Your time isn’t free to sit at home all day, photograph, edit, write, source and everything else you do behind the scenes to put together content that connects to your audience. If it weren’t for connecting to sources and sharing links, you guys would have to take on something else to pay your bills. Same goes for much larger operations too. You want Hulu to be ad free, you pay more to offset the cost. Now I just feel like I’m rambling… but yeah, I’m constantly confused with the advertising hate, especially when it’s thought through to create a less annoying user experience for everyone.

    • Julia says:

      I love your perspective.

    • Julie says:

      Amen! I work for a media company so I hear this from consumers all the time – but I don’t want to watch all the commercials! And, I want to explain — the ads pay for the content you love!
      Advertising is constantly evolving because consumers demand a more gratifying experience. LTKI is a creative solution for influencers, retailers and social media platforms — a win/win/win as Julia put it.

      • Allison says:

        This is great information, I’d add that words like sponsor, partnership, or anything that makes it seems there was more to a post than you going to the store and finding an item you like is a turnoff to people.

        I worked in print journalism for years before moving into marketing, I’m seeing full-time bloggers face the same conundrum that plagued the newspaper industry: People do not want to pay for content. Blogging as a full-time job is a new career path. People are figuring it out how to make it work and there are going to be pain points and learning curves, maybe LTKI is one of those things that isn’t going to work out, who knows. Try it for a few months and see, people will either adapt or ignore it. You’ll probably be able to tell fairly quickly if it’s worth your time and effort to use it.

        I do think you’re in a unique position vs many Instagram influencers in that you had a very successful blog and following first (and may contribute to any resistance you feel on IG – your blog readers aren’t used to it). Excited to see what opportunities you guys explore in the future!!

    • I totally agree that it makes sense that bloggers earn an income from their work! That said, we are complex human beings and we can rationally understand that, hate feeling sold to, dislike how materialistic it all can feel, love Julia’s style (both home and fashion!!!), want free content, question a blogger’s motives, love their free advice, and miss the social/community feel that blogging used to have all at the same time. ????????????

  71. Courtney says:

    It took a little bit, but I’ve finally grown to like like to know it. I don’t have the app and must’ve unsubscribed from emails at some point, but anytime I like a post with it I just google the site and I’m automatically logged in and click on my likes, so it’s easy!

  72. Claire says:

    As someone who works on photoshoots, I feel proper crediting of vendors/sources is a best practice at all times, whether you’re being compensated or not. Though influencers spend time inputting sources with Reward Style, I feel that the lack of a public credit for a source makes a blogger look disingenuous.

    Plenty of readers click affiliate links knowing they will kick a little commission to a blogger who shared a great find. I don’t understand why influencers are afraid they’ll lose commissions if they tag a source on Instagram. To me, a post isn’t complete if I haven’t credited all companies and vendors represented in the image.

  73. Sienna says:

    The main reason like to know it annoys me is because it truly is not user friendly. I would rather scroll through comments to see replies to product requests then have to deal with like to know it. I may be completely illiterate and unable to use it, which is my bad. So many people use it that it MUST be useful but I haven’t found that it is user friendly.

    • Heather says:

      This! I find it clunky and confusing to use AND I work in tech. I’ve tried a couple of times to adopt it and finally gave up because it was too much.

  74. Jen gilday says:

    I am signed up for reward style but haven’t found it super user friendly! Do you have a tutuorial or suggestions on how to st it up? I’m an interior designer and want to get it set up.

  75. Lindsay says:

    I’m not a huge fan of the app. It truthfully just seems like another way to push product. My primary reason for following any home blog/ig account is INSPIRATION, which is why I follow CLJ. I do not need to be spoon fed exact items in every photo. Further more when home interior bloggers start linking sweaters, lip gloss, and every last thing they buy, it seems way less genuine. Pile on a sponsored post on the same item a dozen other people in my feed are repping, and it gets too full on. I 100% understand this is a job and income has to made, but I think the cumulative sell sell sell voice is contributing to negativity around the app.

    • Jeanna says:

      Ditto! My thoughts exactly. I’m over this constant push to buy, buy, buy…………..sell, sell, sell. It’s annoying. I don’t recall ever asking a blogger where they bought something. If I see an item in a post that appeals to me, I use the image as inspiration. I can see your point though Julia, it would stop those annoying requests from so many people.

      • Dee says:

        Yep! I hate admitting it here, but I’ve stopped following CLJ on Instagram because I constantly felt like something was being pushed. All. The. Time. It’s fine when it’s every once in awhile, but it felt daily.

        Reflecting on the conversation about the IG algorithm, the back and forth fielding questions are interactions! That’s what you want, right? I don’t see what deeper conversation you’d like to see going on, but I didn’t see it happening. I’m not a fan of like it to know it (buying likes?). I want to like something because I like it, not to get the source.

        I love your work, and I’ve been following along on the blog since the YHL feature. I’ll keep following the blog for the good content you’re putting out here.

    • Ryan S. says:

      I agree!! Also, I’ll add that most of the time, bloggers get these products for free or a fraction of the price and I simply can’t afford them even if I wanted to. I’m not opposed to bloggers making money but I just hate how so many things seem like “here buy this high dollar item that I either got for free or paid a dime for.”

      • Abby S says:


      • Rachel says:

        Yup! And it’s a constant BUY BUY BUY that gets so annoying. I would never use this app, it’s giving away your own privacy and personal information to know exactly what high priced item the blogger got for free.

    • Michela says:

      You hit the nail on the head!

      When I follow CLJ, I expect to learn where they bought XYZ for their house because I’m here for the design content. I totally understand the need to link product and make money off the design that drives this blog. In fact, there have been times where I end up purchasing something CLJ has recommended but months later, and I go back to the post where I originally saw it and purchase it through the affiliate link because I want to give them the credit! It’s more work for me, but they deserve it; they did the research and wrote, shot, proofed the post, etc. But when I see affiliate links for regular life stuff, it feels disingenuous because that’s not why I’m here. I think that’s why it’s jarring to see “swipe up”s and “like it to know it”s for lip gloss and boots and sweaters and sunglasses. I’m sure people are asking CLJ for sources for those things, but is that the purpose of this space?

  76. Tara says:

    I’m sorry but it bugs me that the people that won’t download the app are also the ones who will ask for sources over and over in the comments. It feels like such a waste of time for bloggers and designers. Especially when a paint color or source has already been given in a previous post or in the comments and people can’t be bothered to read through the comments first to see if it has already been answered. If you don’t want the app then make some effort to search the blog or comments before mindlessly asking the same questions again and again! Or just get the app and it’s easy. ????

  77. Megan says:

    I actually love it when people use the LTKI functionality. I have a hard rule that I don’t like a photo unless I genuinely *like* a photo or want to know more about the products in the post. I have no problem buying through an affiliated link because it gives credit where credit is due. Bloggers spend soooo much time searching, researching, making decisions, shooting, writing posts that I will support where I can – including through LTKI. But I also agree with other that the platform could be avoided if Instagram just opened up the shopping posts functionality to accounts other than merchants.

    • Megan says:

      Also, I don’t use the app. I just do the email after liking an Instagram photo. I have those go to a separate shopping/junk email account (that I do check daily). I want stuff like that separated from my “real” email.

  78. Jessie says:

    Hi Julia! I’m a LTK convert, it’s just so easy. But, I would agree with others it looks ‘sales-y’ with the hashtags & all at the end of the post. But (again!), I got over that and totally value the service LTK provides. And I’d love to see it free up the comments sections of your posts for more of the convos that you’re so good at hosting.

    All that said — the best page on your blog for me is “Where We Shop”! Rarely do the timing of posts align perfectly with my shopping needs but I always start there when I’m hunting.

  79. Hannah says:

    You mentioned getting the app or emails, but people can also look at ‘shop the feed’ in the sidebar and find out where things are from without signing up. Or they can do 5 seconds of searching and find the relevant post on your blog. I won’t be signing up for the service since I need less marketing in my life, not more, but I’d encourage you to ignore the negativity. You’re not taking anything away from anyone or forcing anyone to use a new service. The constant requests for sources are too much, it’s not sustainable, and why should you leave money on the table when it’s possible to get a referral commission for the same link?

  80. Jen says:

    I get that you are saying you use it as a source tool, but it is hard to know if that is real just based on the fact that you do make mo way off of it. Would you be using it at all if you didn’t? It is hard to know. I normally don’t chime in, I am one of the “if you don’t like it keep scrolling” people, but you did ask. I do not have like to know it. Never will, and it still irritates me every time I see it.

    • Olivia says:

      Curious to hear CLJ’s answer — will they still use it even if there’s no commission? And no, I’m not a fan of LTKI either. Seeing a URL on the IG caption – which is not even a real, clickable link! – is proof that IG does not support this app’s method. So LTKI had to work around the platform’s ‘limitation’ by adding extra steps for the users to follow just to get information that can be simply posted as a caption/reply/comment. It’s too cumbersome. Which makes me believe that people (err, influencer) are really just in it for the moolah.

      • Jackie says:

        Yeah, I like CLJ. But have to agree. This really just seems to be about wanting more money. If you are bugged by people asking about sources, just don’t answer the comment. Let them do a little work on their own to figure it out.

      • Julia says:

        If you would see how little money we get from LTK it, you would understand it has little to do with money. Hahaha. The Chick-Fil-A run is a bonus.

  81. Robyn says:

    I love it. If I really want to know more about something in a photo I like it then look for the likeit to know email where I can then easily click to get more info. To me better then wading though your comments to see if you’ve already been asked and replied. Only to see so many haven’t done that and your asked multiple times. People need to understand your a business too. A very customer oriented one at that!!!

  82. Katie says:

    I get really turned off by accounts that use I have actually unfollowed people who started to only link things that way. Especially when they respond to your comment asking where to find something with “you can find everything by following me on” Like if you can take the time to respond with that, why couldn’t you just tell me where I can get it? So to me, it can come off as a little distasteful and just wanting a commission. Which I get that is part of the job if it is someones full time source of income, but instagram/blogs/youtube to me is becoming a lot less authentic and more just about the money and sponsorships. I’d like to end this by saying this is NOT how I have felt with your instagram or blog, just how I feel about I LOVE when you guys just respond in instastories with a direct link or comment back by telling us the actual source. I don’t know, I just feel like it creates more of a connection/homey/close feeling with your followers and just feels kind of cold and aloof? Does this make sense?

  83. Danielle says:

    I really appreciate you taking the time to write this post. That being said I really dislike likeittoknowit. I feel that the blogs I follow currently, (including yours) are linking the items that I want sources from (whether that’s on Instagram or in a blog post). I have never had to ask where something is from. The money part does not bother me. I will happily click on your referral links. I can’t imagine the time and energy that go into your posts and projects! For me, It really boils down to the fact that I do not want another log in, with another password, with another email i’m going to unsubscribe from in a few days.

  84. Terra says:

    For the most part, I like it! I feel like some fashion bloggers abuse it a little. I’ve seen certain fashion bloggers use it like an affiliate link free-for-all and when I click like to get the specific resource for something they’re wearing, instead I get an email full of half a dozen shirts or bags that only kind of resemble what they’re wearing in their photo and I feel duped! That’s my only turn off.

  85. Kira says:

    Most of the time, I like Liketoknowit – I just get the emails and have never used the app. What I don’t like is when bloggers (influencers, whoever) don’t tag the actual item and instead list several similar items. I always understand if someone says, “Oh, I bought it a few seasons ago, it’s no longer sold in stores,” that’s fine, but tagging different things isn’t typically helpful for me.

  86. Veronica says:

    It’s personally one of my biggest pet peeves about Instagram. To me it’s just a constant reminder that Instagram has become all about money and so impersonal. Plus in all honesty, it’s just another step I have to take to find something, and who’s got time for that? I refuse to use it out of sheer principle ???? but I WILL got to a users blog if they’ve are posting their sources there. I love what you post and obviously you have your reasons for using it. It won’t keep me from following you but I sure as hell won’t be downloading the app! ????

  87. Sasha says:

    Hi Julia!

    I don’t comment much, but wanted to offer a perspective after reading a lot of the discussion already here: I think using tools like clashes a little with the brand you’ve built for Chris Loves Julia, and I think that’s why you’re seeing such a split here.

    If I were to guess, most of the people on the “I love it!” side are those who follow a whole lot of other bloggers and are already sold on using more apps and buying more things and don’t mind being advertised to everywhere. I would bet that most other popular blogs, especially in the fashion/beauty space, would have a comment section that skewed heavily toward this perspective.

    On the “I hate it!” side are people like me: those who only follow a handful of blogs, and consider the bloggers they follow to be really authentic and considerate of their audience (for example, I also follow Un-Fancy on the fashion side, and would not consider Caroline to be pushy in this respect at all – she’ll provide sources but encourage you to think about the purchases that make sense for your life and goals, which is similar to the CLJ message generally). I think that you’ve really connected with a large group of people who might not have really been looking to follow a “home blog”, but stumbled across your site for one reason or another and found that the content was interesting and the voice was just “real” – not trying to sell anything.

    And unfortunately, for this latter group, tools like are always going to be alienating and honestly a little disappointing, because they make you look a lot more like the blogosphere at large – and the fact that you didn’t, before, was part of the appeal. We love that you provide sources! But we hate when you use tools that other bloggers use purely to sell sell sell more product to their impressionable followers.

    Anyways, I *know* that’s not your intention or how you’re using these tools, and I really appreciate that you are so transparent about it and concerned about why people are so against it! But I think honestly it’s going to be a knee-jerk reaction for a lot of people, and that’s something you might want to consider before introducing too many of these easy-sale tools on top of your already well-resourced content.

    • Julia says:

      It’s definitely something that we are putting a lot of thought into right now and love all the input, especially your well-thought out response.

    • Kate says:

      I’m with Sasha on this one! If I followed a ton of fashion/ interior design accounts I’m sure I would love the app. However I do not, mostly because I feel “pressure” to CONTINUALLY buy what is new and pretty. That doesn’t mean I haven’t bought a rug or two you have linked ???? but your presence is one of the few I’ve decided I want invite in my feed. If I ever NEED to know I just go to your blog though!

    • M Howard says:

      Great comment, Sasha – I feel the exact same way. :)

    • Kimberly says:

      I agree with his so much. For me, I only follow a few very carefully curated blogs/sites and dislike the sales pitchy feel like to know it has. (I so appreciate that even your sponsored posts and ads are on brand and still filled with good content.) Of course, your reasoning makes sense and I don’t think I’ll stop following if you use it. It’s a hard position you’re in—no easy answer.

    • Ashley says:

      Sasha’s words spoke to my feelings as well. I follow so many IG accounts for home inspiration that I set up a separate profile dedicated just to that. With that said, yours is one of very few I’ve continued to follow even on my personal IG account and yours is only 1 of 2 blogs I actually link back to and read more (rather than JUST following on IG). I think it’s because you have connected with us so well that it feels like we know you personally. (The podcast helps with that as well.) I do have the app, but rarely use it. I know you reference everything on the blog so if I do ever wonder about something I search the blog.

    • Katherine says:

      Yes, this was similar to my thoughts but presented better than I could ever.

    • Whitney says:

      Yes!! I agree!
      And Sasha, I also looove un-fancy. The only fashion blogger I follow.

    • @sasha, I’m clearly bored and commenting on all the comments like a creepy troll (????) but I LOVE your thoughtful response and feel like you hit the mail on the head!!!

  88. Katie says:

    Man! I’m now realizing that your job is hard! People can’t be bothered with taking the time to go to your website and look up a source, but when you try to provide a means for them to instantly know the source then you’re seen as too pushy… Personally I love to read the comments on your IG posts, and I HATE when umpteen different people are asking for sources. There’s an entire website filled with this information, people!!! So if this alleviates some of that “discussion” then I’m all for it, whether I use the service or not.

    • Veronica says:

      Well said, Katie!

    • Jamie says:

      This is my opinion 100%. I feel like some of comments on your Instagram are ridiculous—especially the 9 million questions on your wall color. ???? If I really want to find the source to something, I can easily find it on your blog. You guys are incredibly kind to answer so many questions. A lot of other bloggers don’t even try and I don’t blame them. My favorite is when a blogger clearly tags a picture they’ve shared from another Instagram account and people repeatedly ask for sources. Read the caption people!

  89. Amy says:

    I love like to know it and use it all the time. I always hated asking where things were from and love that it takes me straight to the item i want to buy. LOVE LOVE LOVE like to know it.

  90. Jen says:

    Thank you so much for posting this! I’ve seen everywhere but I refused to download the app and got annoyed when bloggers only referenced their sources through it. I think I thought it was some sort of scammy app that would try and sell me stuff that I didn’t want in addition to what I did. Plus, another app?!, you know. But with this post I’ve downloaded and it is super easy! I really appreciate the instructional posts like this – they not only help us (your readers) out but remind us that you’re thinking about and connecting with us as people ❤️

  91. Gib says:

    It’s absolutely crazy how we’ve learned to read/skim through things so quickly with all this technology at our fingertips. I went back to look at your feed to look at it closer because I haven’t really paid attention to this before. When my eye picks up on the “Like to know it” stuff I just skip it. They just scream “ad” to me, and I have to have another app/account/email and it’s a a bit of a turn off. If I really am interested in something I’ll go to the blog.

    But, I’m probably an outlier. I think your photos are awesome for inspiration, but I don’t really want to just buy up all the things. I want to find a way for ideas I like to fit in my space and life.

  92. Marie says:

    Like to know it is okay, and I do very occasionally use it. But it seems like an unnecessary middleman to have to exit Instagram and open a different app or email to find a source. Now that brands can use the “shop” function on instagram (where you tap the photos with the tiny white shopping bag, and the name of each item and price appear), the “like to know it” way of doing things seems like a messy waste of time. With the stoppable photo function, I immediately see whether an item is in my price range, can directly purchase it if so, and scroll on if not! Surely instagram will see the value in opening this up not just to brands, but also to bloggers/influencers. Ideally in a traceable way that would allow you all to earn a percentage of a sale whenever one occurs through the link. It seems so much cleaner/more direct. I’m curious what your thoughts are on this!

    • Marie says:

      To be clear, I totally appreciate you taking the time to use like to know it, and it saves people hours of combing through websites to find a product! And I totally get that engaging in ways besides “where’s that from” are so much more valuable. Just wish this could be done in a simpler, more direct and user friendly way, which it seems might be on the horizon!

    • Julia says:

      I think that would be awesome! I know of one company on the horizon, called Curalate that could do it. They’re the ones that have the technology we use sometimes for blog photos. Where all you have to do is mouse over to see sources and links to them. We just gotta get it to Instagram now. :)

  93. Laura says:

    Thoughtful post. I would be interested to know if there has lately been a change in the way LiketoKnowit compensates/somehow benefits influencers? I am asking because within the last week I have noticed influencers pushing people to follow them on the LiketoKnowit app to access exclusive images and content that cannot be seen on Instagram. What’s the benefit in that? I guess just more opportunity to sell without cluttering people’s Instagram feed? I will say LiketoKnowit originally made me annoyed, but I’ve just accepted and come to understand more and more that influencers work hard to find deals, provide discounts, and search out links, so I have no problem using LiketoKnowit so they can benefit from the fruits of their labor! No need to be greedy, it doesn’t harm me it all to click your link directly for sources. Thanks for sharing this post!

  94. Lisa says:

    I love being able to click and buy something. What a great service! I can’t imagine why it would be bothersome. You just don’t click the link if you don’t care. Thanks for doing it!

  95. Sarah says:

    I’m not a fan of the app. But maybe it was user error? Someone had linked a cute sweater.. I spent a bunch of time downloading the app, learning how it worked, going back to like the picture and then nothing happened. After wasting a bunch of time I was frustrated that I couldn’t get it to work, and I immediately deleted it.

    I also hate asking for a source link.. I rarely do. I also don’t care to try that app again. sooo I guess I’m saving money?

    I always visit your blog. you are very good about sharing sources so I don’t have to ask ;)

  96. Allie says:

    I love it. I love that I don’t have to ask a question and hope I get a reply and I don’t have to dig on websites if it’s only tagged. It’s a little more annoying with fashion bloggers because it seems like they get behind on their posts so the stuff they link is never the exact piece because it’s sold out or they bought it (or were probably sent) 4 months ago. Certain people on insta I will only like for LTK because they use it for and post multiple times a day. I do go to blogs a lot for home decor because most bloggers have Shop Our House which I find super helpful as well.

  97. KM says:

    What if I just want to like a photo but don’t want to know where anything is from? I’ve purposely stopped liking photos unless I specifically want to know where something is from in order to not get the annoying emails. Having said that I love your feed and your inspiration!

    • Julia says:

      If you aren’t signed up for the service, then you don’t have to worry about it. If you are signed up for the service, and want to engage with a post without getting sources, why not comment? :)

    • Angie says:

      I totally agree!! I hate having my inbox flooded with emails every time I like something so like you, I have found myself “liking” less and less. Now if I see the I only like it if I want a source.

  98. Jessy says:

    Thank you for the explanation. I have been aware of liketoknowit but not clear on its use. I appreciate the straightforward tutorial ????

  99. Nicole says:

    I love LTKI. I have had no issues using it. I get the emails sent to my inbox and if I want to, I can click on the link to the product. I honestly get so confused when I see people say they don’t understand how to use it. I think it’s a great way to see everything your favorite bloggers use in a post.

  100. Christina says:

    I LOVE IT!!! Don’t stop using it :) It makes it so much easier when I can quickly screenshot something, open the app, and click away! It’s a little too easy sometimes – oops! ???? Anyway – keep up the great work! Love following your blog, insta, and podcast!! ????????

  101. CMR says:

    The main problem is that it’s just not user friendly!!! It’s a poor design – People expect the UI to be seamless and it’s just not… I have no problem with you making money – I think you absolutely should, but it is SO HARD to figure out the app without what seems to be too much effort. Major design flaw.

  102. Natasha says:

    I am definitely one of those that doesn’t like to ask “where’s it from??” So I LOVE the app! Thanks for using it! I’m sure it makes life just a tad easier for you. :)

  103. Jody says:

    I am such a loser. I always wondered what that meant. Now I know! Thanks!

  104. Brandi says:

    The one time I downloaded the app to use it because I wanted to know where to get a couch, the link was to a totally different couch! On purpose because they said their couch wasn’t available anymore but I sort of felt like it probably was, but the original one doesn’t pay affiliates so they swapped it for something else! Second time, it was a pair of shoes and they were different shoes, same brand and color but not the exact same. So by this point I’m annoyed and don’t see it as really trying to help the reader, just making money. Not saying you do that but I haven’t used it with your photos either so I apologize if you never do that, but min 0-2 so far:(

  105. Jesseca says:

    I like it! Makes it duper easy. I didn’t love the app, but I use the web version.

  106. Sam says:

    I’m totally with you! I wish every photo on my IG was compatible! Makes it so much easier than searching the comments for the sources.

  107. Lucy says:

    I want to buy everything you buy (ha! Kind of…) so needless to say, I love LikeItTKit! A lot!

  108. Mon says:

    I mainly use for clothing fashion. I’m not a big fan because, in my experience, tagged items are either sold out or substituted more often than not. I understand at times having to link items that are “like” the one shown, but thus is a common occurrence. It becomes an annoyance because I am interest in exactly what is shown in the picture. Aren’t these fashionistas showing the latest and greatest fashion?

  109. Alex says:

    I think anything that makes it easier on the person creating the content (you) is a good thing that viewers should try to accommodate. I’m getting a TON of really helpful content from you and your blog and podcast for free.

    That said – I have the LTK app and the emails but it’s a very faulty program. If I like the photo and then open the app, the photo I just liked isn’t there and takes a long time to appear. And as many others have said, sometimes the emails never come. So I don’t really use it, and if I’m wondering where something is from I hop on over to the influencer’s blog and find it there, which I really don’t mind doing.

    Also – let me just say a big thank you to you and Chris for all the (free) inspiration and content that is mostly within my reach in terms of budget!

  110. Tay Oman says:

    I FREAKEN LOVE!!! It sends me right there without having to ask and wait for a reply, if i even get one! Truth be told I don’t know why people don’t like it?? Furthermore, if someone gets a little kick back from it. More power to you. They spent the time finding it!!

  111. Mary says:

    I LOVE it! I read through the comments and was surprised to see so many dissenting views. I have to say though, I do appreciate when someone tags the brand in the photo as well as the LTK link. I especially like using it for home stuff because like you said, it can be such a needle in a haystack combing through a “gold lamp from amazon” search.

    I do find myself not liking specific posts though to avoid emails for things I’m not interested in which is awkward when it’s just a post I simply want to engage with. I know that’s hard to find a balance with though. A sweet post with your family that isn’t tagged suddenly gets flooded with “yeah that’s nice but where is your shirt/rug/couch from?” Which also ruins the moment maybe more than just preemptively linking it all.

    Anyway! I’m fully on board with it!

  112. Christene Roy says:

    The reason I don’t like it(and have un-followed quite a few)is because some(let me clarify-not all) are using it as a money making tool.As if they are a pitch men for a product.Today,I saw someone pitching Crest Mouth Rinse,and used the LikeToKnowIt app,along with affiliate link.Needless to say-I un-followed them.It just seems like it’s becoming more and more common.I don’t begrudge anyone trying to make a buck,but let’s get real.I follow people because I like their content and ideas.Not what they’re pitching,today.

  113. Ashley R says:

    Is there a minimum amount of followers required to use the app on your Instagram? If not, I’d love Ann invite. Thanks for all the info on this! I didn’t know exactly how this all worked and I’d tried it myself and I wasn’t always getting emails about the photos I liked that were linked.

  114. Missy says:

    I LOVE this app! The screenshot capability was a total game changer for me. It makes it ten times easier. I never got the emails when I hearted a post. But when I screenshot it, open the app and link to it..incredible!!

  115. stefanie says:

    FIRST, I’d love an invite to I’m new to the blogging world, but I think I have a lot to say & share and would love that platform!

    I have been using this app for ages and I LOVE IT. I’ve spent so much money with it. Even if it is affiliate marketing, so what? The people who are showing me this amazing new clothing have put a lot of work into finding the product so I don’t have to & setting up beautiful photos and whatnot.

  116. Nicole says:

    Like a lot of people who have commented, I just don’t like the “hoop jumping” that LTKI demands. I don’t want another app and I don’t want another email.
    I do think you strike a good balance because I can come to your blog and find what I need. You’re not ONLY giving us the information via Insta. I think I prefer a well-written blog post with details and perhaps a thought process versus shopping via app.

  117. Chelsea says:

    Tags on photos is SO MUCH EASIER. If I really care about something, I can go to the website tagged and look for it. likeittoknowit is annoying because I want to know the sources now, not later through an email or another app. I appreciate much more when products are tagged this way. I get annoyed when someone asks where something is from and the blogger pushes “likeittoknowit” instead of just responding with the source. My old iphone can’t handle another app!

    • Julia says:

      Like I said in this post, tags tag brands. is the ability to share the exact product. So they are similar (and we tag almost every photo!) but someone that actually wants to buy the buffalo check mat under our doormat that we have tagged as Amazon, may have a hard time finding it.

    • Kris says:

      I agree with this. Responding to the question w likeittoknowit is a huge turnoff. I love your blog!

  118. Jessica says:

    I have come to like it, even if at first it was a bit of an eye roll. Like everyone was saying, it feels like ‘another thing’ to figure out, check, manage alerts/updates/passwords for, but now I just have the email with links sent straight to my email, no app needed. I follow home and style bloggers for a reason: to get ideas and inspiration. To be annoyed that you are making a small commission based on your recommendations and product links would be a little silly, BUT I think everyone’s aggravation is rooted in bloggers who ONLY straight up push products. Bottom line though, internet culture changes so quickly, and I think its just that fact that can make people uncomfortable. Keep on keepin’ on!

  119. I guess I’m going against the grain of previous commenters but I LOVE LikeToKnowIt. I think it’s perfect in both directions: it gives the blogger a chance to make a little, and saves literally everyone the time of a million questions in Instagram comments. Which are even annoying to some of us (like me) who doesn’t even have to answer them! I guess if someone doesn’t like it as a program, just don’t click like/don’t sign up? I don’t see the issue with that solution. If someone is genuinely curious about where you got something, they’ll go through the (very simple) process of using the program.

    I think on Instagram more than anywhere else, people expect you (the influencer) to do ALL the work for them. And yes, some of what you’re providing is a tool for others to use, and you rightly benefit by that service. But I see accounts like yours as more of an inspiration source rather than a “please let me copy piece by piece exactly what you’re doing” informercial type of thing. I think adding the LikeToKnowIt bridges the gap between those two spaces wonderfully. You’re able to share, users are able to choose whether or not to participate, no one has to spend hours answering the same question over and over again and missing the real conversations possible. (taco emoji!!)

  120. Brittany says:

    Thanks for writing about this! You’re so right in that the app benefits EVERYONE. I have struggled with using it out of fear of being perceived as inauthentic, because i don’t typically use it for my instagram posts, even though I know it’s so dumb of me to think that way! I LOVE when I like posts that are also liketoknowit enabled., and actually look forward to receiving the links in my inbox! I just discovered using the app to see the photos I like as well, and now you can follow folks. It’s really on those who use it most to influence others to understand it’s value, which is why your post is great!

    • Julia says:

      Thanks, Brittany. My hope is to spread awareness. I, like you, have loved the program long before I even used it on the “influencer” side. It’s still relatively new on the home side, but I would love to see it being used more and more personally!

  121. Katie says:

    I am not a fan. I don’t care enough about where a particular product came from to want to download another app or receive more emails in my already cluttered inbox. I don’t mind clicking an affiliate link if I feel like the product recommendation is genuine, but when “influencers” start linking tons of things they haven’t even purchased themselves or have ordered but haven’t tried yet, I skip past, just like I fast forward through commercials on television.

    • Elaine says:

      THIS. I was receiving emails for things I liked that included a boat load of sources that weren’t in the photo at all, etc. It was pretty terrible and completely off putting. I got so sick of it I deleted the app and stopped following all fashion bloggers. And unsubscribed from the emails. Nope nope and nope some more.

    • Luxie says:

      I completely agree with this. And to add seems like every blogger buys from the same nine stores anyway.

  122. Great post :) Users can also sign up for emails so instead of opening another app, they get the photo and product links directly in their inbox after they like a photo on IG.

  123. Veronica says:

    Eh. I’ve accepted that bloggers want to use this but I personally engage way less with bloggers who use affliate marketing than those who just tag brands in their photos. I find the links to it unattractive and messy and I don’t want to interrupt my scrolling to switch to another app. I can rarely buy things I look at immediately (not rich, y’all!) so often I just want a general “Ah, it’s from West Elm!” before I move on. Truthfully though, if I had to choose between following a blogger who uses affiliate links and one who doesn’t, I always choose the latter.

    If I really like something I’ll either remember it later or use the “save” function in Instagram to make sure I come back to it when I get my next paycheck. But like I said, I realize this is a way of life (and income) now for bloggers so i pretty much just ignore it and keep scrolling if I really love the blog (like I do yours!)

    • Julia says:

      I love the save button in Instagram! Best addition to the entire app! But your comment about “if I had to choose between following a blogger who uses affiliate links and one who doesn’t, I always choose the latter” really concerns me. What is inherently wrong with a blogger who uses affiliate links (I don’t know a blogger who doesn’t).

      • Veronica says:

        Like someone further down the page said, someone who HEAVILY uses affiliate links seems more “Ad”-y to me. Not saying they’re unethical, not saying influencers don’t have a right to earn commission, not saying it makes sense! It just turns me off and takes me out of the “zone” when engaging with a blogger. “Oh yeah, they’re getting paid to recommend and post about this. Do they even really like it?”

        If I really love a blog I deal with it but it definitely makes an impression on me when I follow new accounts.

        This is a good conversation though— I think about this stuff a lot but never see bloggers talking about it!

  124. Kim says:

    I actually really dislike it, and I’ve spent some time trying to figure out WHY it makes me so annoyed. Definitely the part about having to download is part of it. But that’s not the entire story. I think its because it makes me feel manipulated. I totally get why its really useful for the people creating the content. From my perspective though, I’m being asked to download an app and engage in a particular way (liking the photo), or I’m not going to be told where I can buy this thing (which, if I do, will make money for that person). Maybe its not a reasonable reaction, but it just really really annoys me. I feel like I’m being asked to jump through a bunch of hoops, or I’m not going to be told the secret source.

    • Julia says:

      I think I get what you’re saying. I don’t think sources should be secret–we generally tag all of our sources in the photo, and list them on the blog. Yet–we still get a ton of questions where something is from. It seems unreasonable to answer it dozens of times when there is a better way, right?

      • Kim says:

        To be clear, I wasn’t talking about you specifically! I’ve never had an issue finding something that you’ve featured. I do think its an issue when is the ONLY way to get a source though. I’ve seen people refuse to give out sources any other way, just direct people to the app and refuse to answer questions. I don’t have an issue with it as a way to provide sources, I just don’t like it being the ONLY venue.

    • SNH says:

      Totally agree with all of this, particularly the idea that I have to engage a certain way in order to be told where someone bought something which is manipulative and annoying. And maybe people are using LTK for efficiency purposes….but 99% of people do it in order to make money. If a blogger or “influencer” is a putting in quality, hard work to offer unique, helpful content then sure, I’ll “like” your pic. But way too many IGers are going to the nearest JCrew and trying on a ton of clothes with LTK links, or repeatedly telling people in the comments to use the LTK link to find the source instead of just telling people where it’s from.

      • Julia says:

        100% of people using it are making money off it (sometimes a little, sometimes a lot). But I think it’s false that even close to that many people are ONLY using it to make money. It’s a great resource! I also don’t think making money for sharing content you created is a negative thing, or sharing something you own that you introduced to someone else. No matter what. I do agree that there are people abusing the system–but only if you aren’t getting any inspiration from them. I tend to unfollow people that I don’t feel inspired from.

      • Heather says:

        This isn’t about LTKI, but your comment bothered me. Making money on content you create or sharing things you own is one thing. Sharing links to sales of things you don’t own (and only saw online) or linking to weekend sales with affiliate links is another.

      • Vidya Raghavan says:

        Julia, you said “content you created” or “something you own” – but many of the affiliate links on LTKI are not content the blogger created or items they own, and that’s the problem people have with it.

        A “similar” item is not “content you created” or “something you own” – it’s not something you can vouch for; it’s just a link thrown in there to make money, and we have no evidence that it’s something you would buy, because you haven’t bought it. The same goes for “weekend sale” and “roundup” posts – those are just ones I skip. They have nothing to do with content you created or things you own – and they’re not things you can vouch for or can recommend with any experience.

      • Julia says:

        I agree about LTKI should only include links seen in the photo. I know when I like a photo and get the sources, I’m always bummed when they don’t actually align with what the photo says. But maybe it’s sold out or they are providing a cheaper alternative–who knows. I agree, it’s a little deflating at times, though.

        That being said, I think several commenters are including all affiliate links in with LTKI, per your second paragraph. LTKit is JUST the link added to instagram photos. That’s all it is. We talked a lot more about affiliate links here.

    • Susa says:

      Yes!!! Completely this, Kim! You 100% nailed my distaste and annoyance toward LTKI with this comment. It’s such a huge turn-off and I hate that it’s becoming so prevalent on IG!!

  125. Renae says:

    I personally love the email system. It does make me a bit more hesitant to “like” a photo with an associated link if I’m not interested in the products being featured. But it’s extremely convenient when I do want to find the source for a product – without being the annoying person asking you in the comments. It’s also really helpful when I’m looking for a particular object – let’s say it’s a rug – and I know I’ve seen one I love in your previous posts.

  126. Ashley H says:

    I generally do not like Like to Know It because there are so many bloggers who are downright greedy and sketchy about it – linking “similar” items that aren’t remotely similar (or at a vastly different price point- if the original is from target why aren’t you sending me a restoration hardware link?!), linking items just through retailers who pay a higher percentage (like Nordstrom, when the original item is from gap), or never divulging where they bought the item other than through Like to know it links – basically they’re doing everything they can to get people to click through as many of their links as possible to leave as many cookies as possible so that they get commissions. And yes, visiting your like to know it link for a mirror on West Elm will get you a commission when I go to West Elm later this week to buy a pillow I was always going to buy no matter what.

    So, i guess to sum it up – LTKI feels inauthentic, greedy, and frankly…sketchy to me SOMETIMES. Not always, and generally y’all make solid enough recommendations that I don’t mind it (and frankly, I’m fine with you earning some commission from me- i see it as helping you guys continue to produce excellent content. But there are some “influencers” where I will never ever click their links because they are so sketchy about it.

    Just so y’all don’t think I’m some monetizing hater, I used to have a “fashion/outfit of the day” blog with a relatively large following (not as large as yours) and did use affiliate links – but I was always clear to say here’s a link to this gap sweater or here’s a more expensive version of these shoes since mine are sold out. Basically, as with all things, I think transparency is important.

    • Julia says:

      Transparency is huge! Everything! It’s the root of this post, to be honest. I’m trying to think of a better way to share sources on Instagram (of course the blog is easier!) and this seems like the best option. We tag. We send people to the blog. But, for sharing sources on that platform, this seems so much more efficient for everyone.

      • Elaine says:

        Have you asked instagram what they think? The people who read the blog and respond to the blog are clearly a very different group than those who ask the wall color daily. (Seriously people. Google. It’s your friend.) Asking the blog readers what they think of the sources being tagged on Instagram seems odd. Of course the blog people aren’t going to like it as a source – they already read the blog post with the sources tagged. I’d be curious what the Instagram crowd thinks. Alas, the conversation would probably be killed by paint color questions.

      • Julia says:

        ???? I threw it out to Instagram last night and there were several source questions in the comments of things I specifically stated in the caption, so it might just be a lost cause. The good news is, the heroes always come forth. Our loyal readers, who know or house almost as thoroughly as I do generally chime in with an answer. You’re totally right, I’m preaching to the choir in a sense.

  127. Amy says:

    I am not a blogger or an instagrammer. I do love to read different types of blogs and I follow a ton of instagrammers to get inspiration and I enjoy reading and viewing their content. All of this is provided to me for free, so I do not take issue with people being compensated for what they are doing. In fact, I appreciate knowing the sources of products I like more easily. I can see how some people do get turned off when a blogger or instagrammer seems to only share things to obviously make money or does tons of sponsored posts. I just stop reading or following when that happens. Thanks for the helpful info and for being genuine in what you do! You guys are my favorite.

  128. Tara says:

    I’ve tried a few times and was unhappy with it for a few reasons: 1. As others have said, I don’t want to have to use a second app or even get yet another email in my inbox to be able to know where an item comes from. 2. I don’t think it’s as helpful in the home category because often times I don’t want to find out that the item I love is way more expensive than what I would be willing to pay for it, i.e. I don’t want to like a photo with a couch in it just to find out the couch is $5,000+ but this blogger got it c/o. 3. What if I just want to like a photo for the sake of liking the photo? I don’t want my inbox then flooded whenever I like an “influencers” photo on Instagram. I think this really detracts from one of the main functions of Instagram which like you’ve said is INTERACTION, not ADVERTISING. 4. Because using a second app annoys me, I’ve signed up to get an email but I’ve found that sometimes the email comes days later after I liked something or it doesn’t come at all (and I can’t remember the blogger/photo because I assumed I’d get an email with just a like). 5. Finally, it seems like bloggers (both fashion and home) are now really pushing because it makes YOUR life easier – but it really doesn’t make mine any easier, in my eyes. You recently wrote a post about how you think Instagram wants us to act like people so then arguing that all bloggers/influencers should use this app so that you DO NOT have to interact with us is counter-intuitive. Of the few times when I’ve loved an item so much and I can’t find it on my own after a few minutes of searching, I’ve commented or DM’d someone to say “Wow, where did you find this? It’s beautiful/wonderful and would go perfect with my X.” I try to spark a conversation and not make it all about the ask. Just my two cents – I don’t fault you for wanting to use it but I actually think there is an argument that it will hurt your engagement/likes long term and lead to less interaction with your readers.

    • Julia says:

      Like I said in the last paragraph, I would love to have more conversations about things other than where something is from. I have used it and not used it, and I have found when I do–the “where is this from?” questions almost disappear yet the engagement is still there, except we seem to get to talk about actual things! The whys and what’s and who’s and how’s. I really love to engage with our audience, but often repeat source questions clog up my feed and I miss a lot of the others because of that.

      • Tara says:

        I totally get that! I can’t imagine being asked the same question on social media multiple times a day. And I see your point about viewing it as a “source” tool, just like most home bloggers have a source tool on their website. I think the problem is that you can’t really separate the “source” nature of it from the “advertisement” nature of it and I think people are sick of ads. Whenever the next big social media platform comes out that is ad free, we flock to it but then it slowly gets eaten up by ads so this big shift in social media and the blog world feels like yet another advertisement. I think this transcends just Instagram. Again, if it makes your life easier, I think you should use it and I wouldn’t necessarily unfollow someone for simply using it – I would however probably choose not to like or engage with that person, again because I don’t want another email/app. As far as engagement, I think asking someone where they got something that you both mutually enjoy is a common way of connecting. I get what you’re saying about the whys and whats and whos and hows surrounding the picture but I think humans normally strike up a convo by finding common ground which in this case would be the item that we both love.

      • Julia says:

        It will not send you anything if you aren’t signed up for the app. So hopefully, you wouldn’t stop engaging with people that inspire you out of fear or receiving information you aren’t interested in.

      • Christine W. says:

        Ltki doesn’t send emails unless you’re signed up for them. Sounds like you had ltki in the past, so maybe you should consider unsubscribing so the unwanted emails full of “ads” stop coming to your inbox. It seems selfish to take out your dislike of ltki and advertising in general on the innocent influencer who’s just hoping to get a small amount of credit for being a personal shopper to tens of thousands (if not more) of followers.

  129. Rachel says:

    When bloggers use these apps, it adds money as a motivating factor when sharing. It changes the recommendation from “something I love that I have no financial stake in so my recommendation is genuine” to “something that I (may or may not) love and the more people that use the link and buy it, the more money I make”. It makes the intent cloudy. Do you really love it, or is it just something you have that you can make money off of? We can’t really tell – even if you say that you love it.

    I get it, you make a living off the blog. I don’t fault you for using it to make money. It just feels more like an ad than a real recommendation.

    • Julia says:

      In this post, I am talking about using as a source tool. How would using it as a way to share sources for a room (or outfit if that’s your niche), per se, even if we do make money off of it, be seen as not genuine, when the thing is a part of our room?

      • Rae says:

        I can take a stab at an answer to that–for me it stems from blogs/insta accounts where it’s obviously the main job. Like this one (and obviously people’s jobs need to pay them an income, I get that). But even though you bought the thing for your room, and you genuinely like that thing, how much of it is that you also bought it because it’s potential new content and an income generator? No new things, no affiliate/LTKI link, not as much money for your job. It’s up to each individual to gauge how much they care about that and when they care about that. The feeling could come and go. I can see that sometimes the whole influencer-consumerist world gets to be too much and nothing feels genuine.

  130. Christiane says:

    I find liketoknowit very annoying and it’s actually the main reason why I have unfollowed a lot of blogs and instagram accounts. I no longer follow any fashion blogs/instagram because they used it so heavily. I hope it won’t take over DIY and design as well.

    • Julia says:

      What about it is annoying to you?

      • Elizabeth says:

        Not the original commenter, but I will answer this from my perspective. It makes the caption hard to read. It also feels so greedy. I don’t mind affiliate links in a blog post because I know that it takes tons of effort to create a blog post and I think affiliate links should be part of the compensation. Instagram used to just be for sharing quick photos and inspiration. Now it’s all about selling selling selling. LTKI is a big part of that – probably the biggest part. With it, you can’t even like a photo without getting spammed with marketing links. I almost always unfollow people that start using LTKI. It’s one of the worst things that ever happened to IG.

      • Julia says:

        If you aren’t signed up for, it shouldn’t send you anything. Could you just not sign up if you aren’t interested in sources?

      • Elizabeth says:

        Oh yeah definitely. I’m not signed up. But part of why I’m not signed up is *because* I don’t want a million emails just cause I liked a photo. I don’t know if I can articulate this properly, but I just don’t want to be marketed to on IG. I don’t mind it on blogs because it’s the price I pay for reading content that someone works hard to create, but slapping up an IG photo isn’t work. At most, I see it as supplemental to the real business (the blog) and a way to bring me to the blog. I can (and do) just stop following most bloggers on IG because of it, but I’m sure that’s not what bloggers want.

      • Julia says:

        I wish we could just keep blogs forever, I’m definitely sensing a shift, but it’s obviously not from anyone reading this post! Haha. And we have no plans to stop blogging, ever! We just get some of our followers on Instagram saying “going to the blog is too much work” and I’m just trying to think of how to get people to the blog. Or get people the information they want/request without having to make them wait.

  131. Amanda P says:

    I utilize the app all of the time for home decor and outfits that I see on instagram. It saves time finding the item, or a similar one, and then I have a direct link to read reviews and check sizes/price/etc. I can select to buy it then or pin it for a later time. I have the links sent to my email instead of utilizing the app though so I can delete them or look so perhaps that is why it doesn’t seem as intrusive.

  132. JoEllen says:

    Hate it and when I see it, I scroll right on past it.

  133. Emily says:

    For me, a big part of the hesitation with the platform is that I feel many influencers use as an over the top selling tool. I’m not saying you shouldn’t make money/commissions as part of the work you do as a full-time blogger (you should!) but there are some users who are constantly hocking merchandise, particularly in the fashion space, to the point where liking a photo on Instagram generates an incredible number of emails in my inbox. I need fewer emails and messages in my life, not more.

    It’s changed my behavior because I find myself ‘saving’ those likes for things I really and truly like or want more information about the source. LiketoKnow.It was born from the idea that we cannot share links on Instagram and the platform has capitalized on that, with the exception of you now being able to tag your sources.

    As others have articulated, LiketoKnow.It feels like one more thing to manage/wrangle in the overabundance of information available to us today. I’m not faulting you for using it whatsoever (I actually want to know your sources!) just wanted to shed some light on how it could be perceived from the outside looking in.

    • Julia says:

      So as a source tool, it’s acceptable?

      • Vidya Raghavan says:

        Not the original poster, but I think it’s an acceptable as a tool for actual sources that you actually own that are seen in the instagram photo – NOT for “similar” items, or items that are not actually in the picture posted, or items that are not actually owned by you.

  134. Colleen says:

    I am another user who is not fond of the idea of another app just to find specifically linked products – seems unnecessary. I have no problem liking the photos on Instagram with to follow the link, however 90% of the time I don’t actually get the email at all from them with the products, or the product I’m interested in isn’t actually linked (or I change my mind on the item when looking at the site listing versus how it may have been styled in the photo). I do prefer when the stores are tagged directly or when they’re listed with affiliate links on the blog, so that I can go there to directly and window shop for other items at the same time. :)

  135. Ling says:

    I never knew it was a separate app your followers needed to download. I can definitely see how beneficial it is for you and your followers who want to know where stuff is from but I’m with Kelly: I do not want to download another app to access information within another app. I try to keep my apps to a minimum on my phone: I resisted downloading boomerang for the longest time for this reason. I’m content with your tags and links from your blog and I’m also fine with sorting through your comments to see if you mention sources not otherwise tagged. Thank you for being so open to sharing your sources in so many ways though! It is greatly appreciated :)

  136. Liz says:

    I don’t have a problem with supporting bloggers through affiliate links on blogs, but here’s the issue I have with liketoknow links: there’s a lot of “influencers” on instagram who heavily promote their affiliate links. There comes a point where you can’t honestly love every single purchase you make, and it makes me feel that some of those on Instagram are disingenuous in adding LikeToKnow links to every single post they share just to generate revenue. I know you guys are more choosy about what you promote and what you don’t, but I don’t want to see “shop this room” on an InstaStory followed by fifteen LikeToKnow links.

    Is that weird? This may be just me. I get that it’s a very fine line between relatable content and being able to support yourself for the content you produce, but that’s why I don’t click those links.

    (Feel free to delete this comment, too!)

    • Julia says:

      I get what you’re saying. I guess I’m talking about as a source tool. I don’t see it as anything but helpful.

      • Hillary says:

        What I gather through reading this post and the comments is that YOU view it as a source tool, but many commenters are trying to express to you (maybe unsuccessfully) that they do not. Right or wrong, rational or not, some people view like to know it as an inauthentic advertisement and it affects their interaction with and/or opinion of influencers. I think you’ve done a great job explaining the benefits of like to know it and your genuine intent in using it… Unfortunately intent doesn’t always match perception and no matter how genuine your intent is, there are just going to be people that don’t see it like you do.

      • Julia says:

        And I would tell them, to not sign up for the service. :) But also, allow those that do benefit from it to continue to do so.

      • Elizabeth says:

        (I’m mean this as non-snarkily as possible) That kinda shuts down dialog doesn’t it? LTKI isn’t in danger of being taken away from anyone. The people who don’t like it probably already don’t have it. They’re just explaining why they don’t like it since you asked.

      • Julia says:

        I totally get that. And I hope my tone didn’t come off as snarky either. If someone has used it and doesn’t like it, then don’t use it. But I’m also seeing a lot of comments from people saying they don’t like it and unfollow anyone that uses it–which I am having trouble understanding.

      • Jenn says:

        Could I kindly suggest that perhaps you do have the ability to understand why people find it so off putting, but it feels very personally attacking to you that it’s hard to see it now? The Chris Love Julia brand has always been transparent and intuitive in what connects with readers and what doesn’t. When you’ve had huge flops with sponsored posts (I’m thinking of that water filter), you’ve recalibrated. Recently you’ve pulled away from posting cooking material because it’s not quite niche enough. From your most recent podcast, it sounds like you’ve found a great place to share that instead!
        In social media there are challenges and this source issue is a huge one for you guys. I’m one of the people who does not follow instagramers who have the LTKI, not out of some principal, but because it subconsciously puts up a huge spam red flag in my mind. I’ve never thought about it until now, but it’s something I do pretty consistently.
        Your brand has come to a place where you’ve struck such a good balance of “I’m just hanging out with my friends talking about house stuff” and “this is real design content that’s attainable for me.” For whatever reason, LTKI is throwing that off in a serious way for a lot of readers. While it can feel really personal, at the end of the day, it’s just another mis-matched brand alignment.

  137. Bethany H says:

    I’m curious about how this app differs from Instagram’s built-in product tagging feature. I just read about it the other day and I’m starting to notice it on my feed. Is easier to use?

    As a user, not an influencer, I don’t love the idea of utilizing another app for something like this. Just trying to keep my life minimal! I love the idea, but I just don’t think I’m going to switch back and forth.

  138. Kelly says:

    I do not want another app to use the app I’m already using.

    • Julia says:

      So maybe you’re content with just tags on photos? (Which we use)

      • Gail says:

        I don’t use the app…I just have it set to send me an email when I like an instagram photo…I don’t have to go open another app…I just read the email the next time I’m in my inbox. I think it just sends like once a day though (you may can change that) so it’s not always immediate when I like, but I actually kind of like that because it gives me time to think about whether I really want the item instead of just impulse buying with an instant link!

      • Julia says:

        That’s true!! I should add that to the post.

      • Kelly says:

        I LOVE and I completely agree about giving me the window to really think about the item before purchasing. I mindlessly scroll through instagram in my spare time (waiting for an appointment, meeting, etc…) but then have the link to purchase waiting in my email. I generally only make purchases on my laptop (easier to read reviews, search for coupons online, etc.. than on a phone) so seamlessly helps me connect my mobile experience to my laptop. As far as managing the emails, gmail tends to group most emails together so it’s not a huge burden in that regard plus I am meticulous about deleting/archiving the emails once I have dealt with the content. I do not use the app simply because I prefer to purchase things on my laptop and not my phone.

        A potential con for an influencer is I actively do not like photos that are tagged with if I know I don’t plan to purchase any of the products, thus decreasing likes that may have otherwise occurred (admittedly I didn’t like much to begin with on instagram until came along anyway). Although you could also argue that if I don’t want to purchase any of the products in the picture it makes sense that I’m not engaging with the content and could be a good indicator of engagement for the influencer.

        I have spent way too much time convincing friends that is completely worth it and arguably the easiest way to simultaneously find inspiration and source products for both my home and closet!

      • Abby says:

        Totally agree with this point about non-instant being a very good thing!

    • Rebecca says:

      I’m in the same boat – I want to limit the number of somewhat invasive apps that require enabling permissions to view and modify my phone storage, use, etc.

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