Plugins are the building blocks of lifestyle WordPress blogs.
Most plugins allow you to add functions that enhance the user experience without requiring a single line of code. However, it’s imperative to find plugins that perfectly complement your website’s look and feel.
Plus, the plugins you choose must have minimal impact on your website’s loading speed and security.
The good news is, I already rounded up the top plugins for WordPress lifestyle blogs in this post.
All you have to do now is determine what you need and take your pick.
Happy plugin hunting!
Table Of Contents
- 1. Performance Optimization Plugins
- 2. Photo Gallery Plugins
- 2.1 WP Portfolio
- 2.2 NextGEN Gallery
- 2.3 Envira Photo Gallery
- 2.4 Photo Gallery by 10Web
- 2.5 LayerSlider 6
- 2.6 Final Tiles Gallery for WordPress
- 3. Functional Lifestyle Blog Plugins
- 3.1 BMI Calculator
- 3.2 Meal Planner Pro Recipes
- 3.3 Weight Tracker
- 3.4 WooCommerce
- 3.5 bbPress
- 3.6 Customer Reviews for WooCommerce
- 3.7 WP Customer Reviews
- 4. Page Builder Plugins
- 5. Social Media Plugins
- 6. Miscellaneous
- 6.1 WP Open Comment Links in New Window
- 6.2 Genesis Simple Hooks
- 6.3 Timetable and Event Schedule by MotoPress
- 6.4 Advanced Custom Fields Pro
- 7. Conclusion
Performance Optimization Plugins
Before anything else, remember that top-tier lifestyle blogs rely heavily on visual content and interactive elements.
The problem is, these elements can be very taxing on your website’s performance. This is especially true if you use videos, image sliders, and other interactive plugins meant to spice up your blog.
Fortunately, most of the negative effects of using visuals can be mitigated with the right performance optimization strategies.
Here are plugins that can help you with this:
1. WP Rocket
WP Rocket is a popular, paid plugin that can tune-up every performance-related aspect of your website.
Through the quick setup process, you can enable page caching, lazy loading, code minification, and a bunch of other optimizations. Other features include Google Fonts optimization, DNS prefetching, GZIP compression, and browser caching.
The only drawback is, WP Rocket doesn’t offer a free version — not even a free trial.
For one website, you’ll need to buy the “Single” plan, which is priced at $39.20.
On the plus side, it saves you the trouble of installing multiple performance-boosting plugins on your lifestyle blog.
If you already bought a premium lifestyle blog theme that’s performance-optimized, an image compression plugin goes a long way.
Smush is one of the highest-rated image compression plugins that can optimize your media library in a snap. It features a “Bulk Smush” feature that compresses all your images in one go.
With Smush, you also don’t have to worry about losing image quality. The plugin utilizes lossless compression — developed to reduce an image’s file size with minimal to zero effects on quality.
The best part is, Smush has a free version that has all the plugin’s core features. But if you want extra features like the “2x” compression mode and image CDN, you can buy Smush Pro.
This costs $70 per year for one website or $290 per year for unlimited sites.
3. Fast Velocity Minify
While image compression focuses on minimizing the size of images, code minification does the same for code assets.
Minification involves removing unnecessary characters in code like whitespaces and comments. With a plugin like Fast Velocity Minify, the entire process will be automated for your convenience.
Photo Gallery Plugins
Galleries make it easier and quicker for visitors to view a collection of images on a website.
You often find photo galleries in lifestyle blogs that cover fashion, beauty, food, photography, and health.
Below are some of the best photo gallery plugins you can use on your lifestyle blog.
4. WP Portfolio
WP Portfolio is a premium plugin that lets you showcase your images, videos, and other creative works with style.
It works fast, supports categories, and comes with advanced design options to make your gallery look and feel more unique.
WP Portfolio is sometimes included as a freebie in some premium lifestyle themes. Otherwise, the plugin is available for $49 a year — $169 if you want stuff like page builder integrations and templates.
5. NextGEN Gallery
NextGEN Gallery is a plugin that allows you to show off your image collection through one of five gallery types.
The “Basic Thumbnail” gallery, for example, generates a lightweight and minimalistic gallery where images are presented in a grid. There’s also the “Basic Slideshow” gallery that lets users browse through the collection while viewing images in full width.
Whichever type of gallery you prefer, NextGEN Gallery can set it up for you — free of charge. Or, you can purchase the “Pro” version of the plugin for features like image commenting, PayPal integration, and hover captions.
You can get NextGEN Pro for $79 if you intend to use it on one site only. For unlimited websites, the “Lifetime” plan costs $299.
6. Envira Photo Gallery
Envira Gallery is another gallery plugin that makes sure your images look good on any device.
One of its selling points is the drag-and-drop gallery builder — a must-have for non-developers who love customization. Additionally, every gallery you publish with the plugin will be hard-coded to be mobile responsive.
That means the gallery, along with the images it contains, will adjust to match the display size of any device.
The “lite” version of Envira Gallery can be downloaded straight from the WordPress plugin repository. It includes basic features that may suit the needs of new lifestyle bloggers.
Should you go with the paid version, you’ll get advantages like image protection, custom CSS support, and slideshows.
Envira Gallery starts at $29 for the basic plan for one website — all the way to $299 for unlimited sites.
7. Photo Gallery by 10Web
If you intend your image gallery to be the centerpiece of your website, you should check out Photo Gallery by 10Web.
In addition to being lightweight and mobile-responsive, Photo Gallery is equipped with advanced features for more engaging gallery experiences. You can play with 15 lightbox transition effects, enable built-in social sharing, mix things up with video content, and more.
Despite these features, creating galleries with the plugin is easy-peasy — thanks to the drag-and-drop user interface. If you don’t want to start from scratch, you can also save time by choosing from two pre-built gallery themes.
The galleries you create also loads fast to ensure a smooth reading experience to your visitors.
Photo Gallery can be purchased for $30 through the “Basic” plan, which is good for one website. A minimum of $60 is required if you want to use the plugin for up to 30 websites.
8. LayerSlider 6
I’d be selling LayerSlider short if I said it’s just another gallery plugin for WordPress.
To be more accurate, it’s a versatile animation platform that can be used for all sorts of visual elements.
Yes — that includes image galleries for your WordPress lifestyle blog. LayerSlider can also be used to create popups, landing pages, dynamic page blocks, slideshows, and pop-ups.
LayerSlider’s animation engine includes over 200 ready-to-use slide transitions. That, coupled with the drag-and-drop editor, makes it incredibly easy and fun to make unique image galleries for your website.
Despite LayerSlider’s robust feature set, you can use it on your WordPress site for a one-time payment of just $25. If you have multiple sites, you can adjust the pricing to scale for 3-50 websites — from $66 to $750.
9. Final Tiles Gallery for WordPress
Final Tiles Gallery may not be the most popular plugin around, but it more than deserves its high ratings.
The plugin lets you create responsive photo galleries that load fast and look great. More importantly, the galleries you create with Final Tiles Gallery will never look generic.
Here’s the problem: there are tons of gallery plugins out there that pretty much do the same thing. Most of them allow you to showcase your images using similar-looking layouts, making it hard to create something absolutely unique.
Final Tiles Gallery employs a unique algorithm that retains the images’ original dimensions as much as possible. Unlike other gallery plugins that crop and resize images, it simply calculates the best arrangement and applies it.
Other than that, Final Tiles Gallery also features scroll effects, hover effects, seven lightboxes, and WooCommerce support.
The base version of Final Tiles Gallery costs $24.99 a year. For features like video galleries, hover effects, caption effects, and recent post galleries, the price increases to $29.99 per year.
Functional Lifestyle Blog Plugins
Other than photo galleries, certain lifestyle blogs — particularly health-related sites — include additional functionalities that can help readers accomplish their goals.
You can do the same with the following WordPress plugins.
10. BMI Calculator
For lifestyle blogs that also talk about fitness, having a BMI or body mass index calculator is a plus. It allows users to set and track their body weight goals — perfect if you serve fitness tips left and right.
BMI Calculator is a free, lightweight plugin that lets you add a fast BMI calculator to any page via shortcode.
The calculator itself has a clean and minimal look, which should match almost any theme available on the web.
For customization, you can choose between material design, clean, and default which adapts to your site’s overall theme.
11. Meal Planner Pro Recipes
How are you planning to share recipes on your WordPress blog?
Use images and the built-in post editor to build everything from scratch?
Sure, that would work — if you don’t want your lifestyle blog to be competitive. But if you want your blog to be profitable, using a recipe plugin is the way to go.
Meal Planner Pro Recipes is a recipe plugin that allows you to make visual recipe cards. It significantly improves the readability of recipes by making important details more visible, including the ingredients and step-by-step instructions.
The recipe cards you can make with the Meal Planner Pro recipes mobile-responsive and SEO-friendly. Also, they automatically inherit your theme’s style and fonts — allowing them to look nice, crisp, and clean on any site.
A free version of Meal Planner Pro Recipes can be downloaded from WordPress. For benefits like recipe ideas and customer support, you can purchase a VIP subscription for $2.49 per month.
If you’re looking for more recipe plugins, check out 10 Best WordPress Plugins for Food Blogs.
12. Weight Tracker
Is your lifestyle blog geared towards helping readers manage their weight?
Weight Tracker is an open source plugin that will enable registered users to monitor their weight via advanced data tracking.
Users can set their target weight, view their total lost weight, and more. Weight Tracker also utilizes data visualizations, specifically line graphs, to help them stay in course.
All core features are available in Weight Tracker’s free version. For features like conditional awards, BMR calculations, and calorie intake recommendations, purchase the “Pro Plus” version for $80 a year.
While technically not a plugin, WooCommerce is a proven WordPress platform for bloggers who wish to sell through their site.
That’s why a lot of developers build lifestyle blog themes with WooCommerce compatibility in mind.
The WooCommerce plugin exists to streamline the integration of your eCommerce store into your WordPress site. Your store’s setup can be done from the WooCommerce website’s interface.
WooCommerce allows you to handle the technical and business sides of eCommerce by yourself. You can build a professional-looking store, manage your product catalog, handle orders, manage shipping — all without hiring anyone else.
The platform also supports hundreds of themes and extensions for that complete online shopping experience. While these add-ons aren’t always free, WooCommerce itself and its core features can be used without spending a single cent.
Every WordPress website has a built-in comments feature right out of the box. In some cases, that’s already enough to get conversations going.
But if you want your lifestyle audience to feel more involved, you can use a plugin like bbPress.
Put simply, bbPress is a forum plugin that incorporates a private message board into your blog. This encourages your readers to engage in meaningful and deep conversations around relevant topics.
A handful of premium lifestyle blog themes emphasize bbPress support as a key feature.
What makes bbPress the go-to forum platform of WordPress users? Some reasons are the easy setup process, fast performance, clean code, and the availability of plugins for extensibility.
bbPress’s minimalistic design also means your forum will easily blend in with your website’s theme. Oh – and did I mention that bbPress is open source and can be used by anyone for free?
15. Customer Reviews for WooCommerce
Have a WooCommerce-powered store on your website?
Enabling and showcasing customer reviews will help you build buyer confidence and close more sales.
Customer Reviews for WooCommerce works by automatically sending friendly reminders to leave a product review. To make sure more users are on board, the plugin targets those who recently made a purchase from your store.
Apart from that, Customer Reviews for WooCommerce also features trust badges, an aggregated review form, and a built-in testing tool. The plugin is also 100 percent free to use — making it a must-have for every lifestyle blogger who uses WooCommerce.
16. WP Customer Reviews
Want customer reviews on your website but don’t use WooCommerce?
WP Customer Reviews will allow your users to leave their own testimonials and product reviews on any page. Submissions can even include star ratings — making it easier for other readers to gauge the overall sentiment towards your brand.
The plugin also uses different anti-spam measures to stop false reviews from making their way into your site. Furthermore, you’re given the power to approve or decline all review submissions.
With WP Customer Reviews, you can embed a review form on any page via shortcode. This will allow lifestyle bloggers to collect valuable feedback on stuff like their outfit ideas, products, and services.
Just like other open-source plugins, WP Customer Reviews can also be installed and activated on any site free of charge. If you find it useful, consider showing your support by donating to the developers.
Page Builder Plugins
Want a fully customized website but don’t want to mess with code?
Visual page builder plugins are here to save the day.
Here are some of the best options to consider.
A lot of premium lifestyle blog themes highlight WPBakery compatibility as a key selling point.
That’s no accident.
WPBakery is simply one of the most complete, user-friendly, and powerful page builder tools around.
After installation, you can use WPBakery by clicking ‘Edit with WPBakery Page Builder’ from the posts or pages section. Doing so will take you to the drag-and-drop interface where you can edit almost every aspect of the page’s design.
You can customize your page’s headings, reposition and resize images, adjust columns, and more — all without writing code.
WPBakery also allows you to add various visual elements to any empty space on your page with a single click. These elements range from basic components like text blocks and rows to interactive stuff like buttons and widgets.
The WPBakery Page Builder is priced at $45 for one website. An extended license for SaaS applications can be purchased at a much higher price of $245.
Elementor is a relatively young page builder plugin that rose in popularity over the past few years.
Sure, Elementor’s brilliant advertising may have something to do with it. But my money is on the fact that the company has near perfected the page building experience.
Elementor powers a fast and streamlined page builder that lets you drag and drop the elements you want into place. You can also adjust the size, format, alignment, and overall design of any element within a few clicks.
Website owners can also utilize animations, unique shape dividers, and photo effects to effortlessly achieve the design they envision.
Despite Elementor’s ability to produce pixel-perfect, custom page designs, the plugin still generates clean code. This means you don’t have to worry about slowing down your site as you add more elements.
When it comes to pricing, Elementor has a free version with 30 basic widgets included.
It is, however, ideal to get the “Pro” version to access all the features that made the plugin special. This includes the collection of over 50 widgets, form builder, and theme builder.
Elementor Pro is priced at $49 a year for one site, $99 for three sites, and $199 for 1,000 sites.
19. Beaver Builder
In terms of popularity, Beaver Builder may be small compared to Elementor and WPBakery.
But if we’re talking purely about features, Beaver Builder is definitely up to par.
Beaver Builder also features a live, front-end editor that lets you customize elements of any page simply with your mouse. Elements like headings, slideshows, icons, and forms are called “modules,” which can be dragged and dropped anywhere on the page.
To help you save time, Beaver Builder also has ready-built landing page templates you can apply in a second. While these templates are already pre-optimized for conversions, they can still be heavily modified with the front-end editor.
Beaver Builder Pro can be purchased at $99 for an unlimited number of sites. Sadly, there’s no pricing option for users who only wish to use the plugin on one website.
Social Media Plugins
Social media networks allow bloggers to promote their content to a wider audience as well as build brand authority.
For lifestyle bloggers, a typical approach is to use video and image sharing networks like Instagram. This lets them capture the attention of their ideal audience through eye-catching visuals — be it about food, fashion, or health.
You can supplement your social media marketing efforts with the following WordPress plugins.
20. Instagram Feed Pro
Have a bunch of stunning visual content sitting on your Instagram page?
You can show it off to your blog audience with a plugin like Instagram Feed Pro.
The plugin allows your blog audience to view your Instagram feed straight from your website. On top of that, users can view comments and engagement metrics as well as share posts without leaving the page.
All these can be done within minutes using Instagram Feed Pro’s simple setup workflow. Right off the bat, it will automatically adjust to fit your website’s theme.
If you’re not happy with the plugin’s default looks, use built-in customization options or go deeper with its “templating” system.
A free version of the plugin is available from the WordPress plugin library. To unlock all of Instagram Feed Pro’s features, you can buy a personal license for $49 a year.
21. WP Social Comments
Although WordPress has a built-in comments system, you have to admit that it’s not the most intuitive experience out there.
The WP Social Comments plugin changes all that by enabling users to comment using their Facebook account.
Other than convenience, comments made through Facebook makes conversations on your website feel more genuine. This is because users can easily verify that they’re talking to real people while receiving authentic insights and opinions.
WP Social Comments also enables users to share their discussions on social media. It’s simple, but it can exponentially boost your online presence as a blogger.
The basic features of WP Social Comments are baked into the free version. For features like comment moderation through the Facebook App and multi-language support, you can buy the “Pro” version for $20.99.
22. jQuery Pin It Button for Images
Aside from Instagram, a lot of lifestyle bloggers also leverage Pinterest to connect with a broader audience.
Pinterest markets itself as a “visual discovery engine” where users find and collect images they like. In the lifestyle sphere, these images may pertain to outfit ideas, recipes, DIY projects, and fitness tips.
jQuery Pin It Button for Images is a simple plugin that embeds a simple “pin it” button in your images. This will allow users to easily add your prized visual content to a specific Pinterest board.
You can control where the plugin obtains the pin description, the button’s design, and overlay transparency level. Moreover, you can specify which posts, pages, and image types will display the pin it button.
23. Social Snap
While a pin it button helps Pinterest users save images, sharing buttons encourage them to share your content everywhere else.
Social Snap is my favorite WordPress plugin in this category. It allows you to create sharing buttons that work through over 30 popular social networks.
This includes popular networks like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, and Instagram.
You can also configure how you want these sharing buttons to look and behave. Combine different button shapes, sizes, and animations to make the plugin match your lifestyle blog’s design.
Other than social sharing buttons, Social Snap lets you create “click-to-tweet” boxes using WordPress’s post editor.
I’ve used this feature plenty of times in my previous posts. Not only does it break up long, intimidating walls of text, it also helps me spread my messages on Twitter.
With individual and total share counters, you can leverage the amount of shares your content got as social proof. This makes your brand and content appear more authoritative to new visitors.
Social Snap can be purchased for a price of $39 with a 30 percent discount on your initial payment. Your license will then be renewed yearly at full price.
The plugins above make up the essentials for a brand-new lifestyle WordPress blog.
Feel free to look for alternatives as you see fit. I actually recommend that you do since there’s no such thing as a one-size-fits-all solution in WordPress development.
What comes next are additional plugins that can help you or your readers make the most out of your blog.
24. WP Open Comment Links in New Window
A blog’s comments section is supposed to foster healthy conversations on the site — not take traffic away from it.
WP Open Comment Links in New Window prevents this by, as the name implies, making comment links open new windows. It’s an open source plugin that does its job in mere seconds — no payment required.
25. Genesis Simple Hooks
Genesis Simple Hooks is one of the essential, best Genesis plugins around for WordPress.
If you have a Genesis child theme, this plugin allows you to inject custom code into over 50 action hooks. Compatible codes include HTML, PHP, and shortcodes.
Some use cases of Genesis Simple Hooks are adding widget areas, displaying custom-placed ads, and modifying a page’s structure.
Using Genesis Simple Hooks effectively may, of course, require some knowledge of basic coding. If you have this and use the Genesis framework, it unlocks a new level of customization for your WordPress website.
26. Timetable and Event Schedule by MotoPress
If your lifestyle blogging career involves scheduling webinars, classes, and other events, this next plugin is worth a look.
Let’s say you’re a fitness blogger who also teaches gym classes.
Timetable and Event Schedule by MotoPress makes it easy to share your schedule through a mobile-responsive, interactive calendar.
The plugin includes a filtering tool to help visitors find events they like. You can also color code your schedule to highlight important upcoming events.
27. Advanced Custom Fields Pro
Advanced Custom Fields is a versatile plugin that lets you insert different types of custom fields into your WordPress site.
These fields could be image galleries, radio buttons, text fields, tabs, and other interactive elements found in other sites.
Just remember that Advanced Custom Fields has a bit of a learning curve. To use it effectively, you’ll need a good hour reading up on creating field types, functions, actions, and so on.
For that, refer to their learning resource page found here.
There you have it — the best WordPress plugins for lifestyle blog sites.
I hope you find the list above invaluable to the creation of your very own lifestyle blog.
If you know a good alternative to any of the plugins above, remember to mention them in the comments below. I also welcome any form of feedback from you guys — so, type away.
See you next time!