Blake Lively, Preserve, Gwyneth Paltrow, Goop

Albert Michael/; Jason Merritt/Getty Images

Effortless style aside, it isn't always easy being Gwyneth Paltrow. She would probably even be the first to agree.

And it turns out that trying to achieve what Gwyneth has achieved is pretty difficult too—if not, as we continue to suspect, impossible.

Blake Lively revealed this morning via Vogue that she is shuttering her lifestyle website Preserve after about 14 months, admitting that it never caught up to its "original mission," to make a difference in people's lives. And we give her self-awareness props to know that said difference wasn't always going to be "meaningful" and would, in fact, sometimes be "superficial."

Blake Lively, Preserve, Baby Bump

Couresty: Eric Lively/

But while the going must have been rather rough to prompt Lively to close up shop after barely a year, it's not a failure on her part. Rather, the very common business development only serves to further prove that Paltrow has really achieved something special with Goop.

Maybe Lively (and, though the jury's still out, all these other celebs-turned-amateur-curators) never stood a chance in the shadow of Gwyneth's burgeoning I'll-have-what-she's-having empire, which might have cornered that very specific niche market just by sheer virtue of being the first—or at least the most high-profile—of its kind when it launched in 2008. (Not to mention, aside from Reese Witherspoon, who launched Draper James in May, Paltrow's also simply a bigger star than all the curator-come-latelys.)

And even Goop reportedly has its financial issues, since it takes time to build a brand that people trust, folks love to be skeptical of a celebrity who purports to know things and, simply, not enough people in the world have the means to drink the goji-berry-and-organic-mint Kool-Aid that an Oscar winner is serving in hand-blown Tuscan glassware. The cupboard is already filled with Martha Stewart cookware after all.

But the simply-yet-confusingly named (is it all lower-case, all upper-case, it is OK to refer to it in title case?!) lifestyle site has gone beyond being the dictator of your #goals. It has become a pop culture touchstone, rife for parody, imitation and, yes, influence—all three being the modern-day benchmark of success.

Blake Lively, Preserve, Gwyneth Paltrow, Goop


Lively never said that she wanted to be like Paltrow (in fact, she seemed to be trying to distance Preserve from Goop as much as possible), but it was impossible for her to try and start a curated-lifestyle website without the inevitable comparisons.

It certainly held no distinction for Stephen Colbert, who zinged both with his "Covetton" bit on the Late Show last week. (A zing duly returned by Goop, because...well, Goop is used to being zinged and has a sense of humor about such things. Yes, Goop is its own person who does things like laugh.)

Whether you fall into the dazzled, disgusted or disinterested category when it comes to Goop, that doesn't change the fact that Gwyneth figured out a way to take what she was already doing and become a taste-maker—so, basically everyone's dream job.

Of course, once you've usurped everyone's dream job you inevitably become a target of ridicule—but Paltrow has handled that with aplomb and kept Goop out of the muck. Not to mention, open for business.

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