People even curse me with miscarriage: Xiaxue

SINGAPORE - Baby Dashiel Marquet Sayre has already raked in over $25,000 worth of sponsorships and endorsements before he was delivered on Sunday.

Perhaps it's par for the course when one is to be born to, arguably, Singapore's biggest name in blogging, Wendy Cheng - or better known by her blogging moniker Xiaxue - and hubby, American engineer Mike Sayre, 31.

Cheng, 28, shares the figure with The New Paper on Sunday in an email interview, adding: " I'm very grateful to have so many baby product companies sponsoring me."

Some of them include:
? Mothercare - an unlimited budget to pick whatever she wants and needs
? Pigeon - an unlimited budget
? Merries baby diapers
? Huiji Waist tonic
? Laurier - for mummy's maternity pads
? Aesthetics doctor Georgia Lee has also promised wraps to help the blogger lose the baby weight after birth.

There are also other smaller start-ups offering Cheng baby products and toys "but these are the ones I've decided to go with for the moment", she says.

She acknowledges that little Dashiel is a fortunate little boy: "Everything he will be using are all the best brand names."

She adds jokingly: "Hope he won't turn out too spoilt."

Social media analyst Sue-Ann Tan, says it is perhaps unsurprising that Cheng's offspring can command so much attention even before his birth.

"Celeb births are always closely watched and in her own way, Xiaxue has carved out her space and become somewhat of a household name - whether you read her blog or not."

According to Ms Tan, the analytics reveal that Cheng's blog - - can draw up to 40,000 views a day.

"I can say that she is the most popular blogger in Singapore right now," says Ms Tan. And that means Cheng can command at least $3,500 for advertorials on her blog while a YouTube video endorsing a product can cost $4,000 and up. She also charges for mentions on her social media platforms such as Facebook and Twitter - at $300 a pop.

The figures may seem astounding but given her personal endorsement fees, the $25,000 sum for baby Dashiel sounds reasonable. Cheng is definitely not the first mum to walk the endorsement route.

Other local actresses and models, who swopped the spotlight for motherhood, have found themselves in demand by advertisers. For example, Queen of Caldecott Zoe Tay, who saw endorsements pour in right from the start when she announced her first pregnancy in September 2004.

Meanwhile, Cheng - who has been sharing her life online for almost 10 years now - says she's found that people have been generally supportive of her pregnancy.

"I've actually had blog readers who e-mailed me, telling me they cried when they read my pregnancy announcement because they were so happy for me. It's very sweet."

But being a public figure going through pregnancy also has its drawbacks.

"I've had a lot of criticisms from judgmental mums regarding my birth and pregnancy decisions," says the pink-haired blogger.

Some of the harshest criticisms were for her decision to keep her trademark dyed hair.

Her gynaecologist had given her the go ahead, she says, but "when people see the coloured hair on a pregnant woman, they immediately get so angry and start insulting me".

"I've even had people curse that I get a miscarriage."

But she shrugs it off.

"The blessings I get from readers are so much more than the nasty comments anyway."

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