I’ve never considered myself to be driven by numbers. I’ve also never felt the burning desire to open a line of conversation with a statistic, but we find ourselves in situations without precedent.
As an industry, beauty found itself to be recession-proof around 2008. Lauder famously theorised that, as share prices wilt, lipstick sales flourish. For the period from 2006 to 2011, sales of skincare products saw a growth of almost 7% (as reported by Euromonitor). Fast forward to Q1 2020 and the Office for National Statistics reported something quite different. Despite sales having risen sharply in 2015 and continuing to climb in the following years, Q1 2019 saw the start of a downturn, with a fall of more than 27% across the Business Index score. Who knows what the future holds for the industry.
In response to this I present to you The Beauty Passport, a new editorial series where I will be exploring, country by country, the best each has to offer by way of beauty and wellness. In the first of a two-part special, I offer you 10 pieces of inspiration to guide your shopping at home whilst helping to support the superb array of home-grown brands and artisans within the UK.
With hands still a big focus in bodycare right now, Temple Spa – Peace Be Still is a long-term favourite balm for deep and lasting hydration and healing. Its light texture absorbs quickly without any trace. If you don’t want to feel you’re wearing any cream and don’t want to clean smudges from every surface you touch within the next half an hour, this is the one for you. Its aromatherapy notes of coriander and lemon make it suitable for the whole household – a gender neutral fragrance that doesn’t overpower. It never leaves my side.
Born from the frustrated efforts of its founder trying to organise her kit as a freelance makeup artist, EMJ Company now offers a beautiful range of cosmetics travel storage for the non-professional too. Hand made in the UK, the accessories available include a range of functional yet fun makeup bags, created in a broad range of finishes from leatherette to faux snakeskin, through glitter and faux feather print. The Beauty Bag will fit all tubes and brushes, whilst the Gypsy Bag is a quick-entry drawstring bag, allowing easy access to those bits that don’t fit in a pencil-style bag. Organised yet stylish and all vegan too.
The beauty and wellness industry is changing and not a moment too soon. It’s no longer just the products you layer on, but also tactile elements you choose to surround yourself with and the emotions they nurture. Whimsical and sensual, The Cloud Whisperer Earrings by Loren Lewis Cole invoke the sense of travel to far away places, purposeful movement and ethereal lightness. If true beauty is a smile, here’s how to find it.
Whilst striving to maintain mental wellbeing, as well as having extra time to dedicate to developing a fitness regime, I have been spending more time on the yoga mat. Never before had I considered how the quality of the mat itself can really change your practice for the better. The Paws Mat by Yogi Bare is crafted from eco-conscious natural rubber, offering the perfect level of hold to stop unwanted movement whilst you are in your yoga-flow, and providing generous cushioning to support deeper rotational poses. More than just a pretty face, the laser-etched design provides subtle guidance to form and maintains your symmetry. For the taller or more free-flowing yogis out there, check out the Paws X Mat. Offering even more grip and a greater length and width, it’s there to support a more extensive range of motion and movement, as well as catering to fans of hot yoga and other disciplines.
Established in 1974, Tisserand’s legacy with aromatherapy grew from one man’s love affair with the discipline. An indie brand before the term even really existed, almost 50 years later the company’s enduring passion is now invested into research and craftsmanship on a much grander scale, whilst still using the best quality ingredients. An offering perfect for those more trying moments, the Little Box of Motivation by Tisserand contains three pulse point rollerballs for an easy-to-apply boost of morale. ‘High Energy’, ‘Find Focus’ and ‘Stay Positive’ are three notions (and scents) I have adored after a prolonged period spent working from home. If you like citrus tones, these fresh, poignant and stirring aromas are for you. With top notes of rosemary, lime and cypress, each blend offers a unique uplift, be it for soothing of the soul, a boost in energy levels or improvement of concentration. The perfect tonic to a disruption in routine.
Forever on the lookout for anything to promote better sleep, and a new found convert to silk sleep accessories, I find the Dual Strap Sleep Mask by This Is Silk is the cherry atop the well rested metaphorical cake I now consider myself to be. Despite its lightness in feel, it’s thick enough to block out the early sunshine when trying to catch up on some zzzs and, equally, can simply be thrown on to ward off any potential disruptions or distractions. With two adjustable straps for a fit truly personalised to you, this is ideal for sleepers who don’t want to be woken before they are ready.
The seasonal wardrobe update I made back in early March hangs still with tags. I was excited to wear these hand-picked pieces for the events, dates and dinners that filled my diary. But now they hang in the shadows of a springtime we didn’t really have. With all this time at home, I’ve not needed – or moreover, not wanted – to wear anything tight, restrictive, or overly embellished. Enter the Marilyn Silk Pyjama by Fleur of England. The two-piece set is a throwback to refined lounging glamour, reimagined for the modern day. 100% silk, with mother of pearl buttons and a relaxed fit, they offer comfort and style equally well suited to nighttime repose or a calm day at home. The new wardrobe picks I crave are light and designed for comfort, but it doesn’t mean I want to be caught by the Hermes driver in the same 15-year-old band t-shirt every day. I think the rainbow of different facemasks are enough. If wellness is the pursuit of good health (both physical and mental), then for me the pursuit of perfect loungewear should also be included.
Formulated for men, Shakeup Cosmetics are leading the way in the most overdue disruption in men’s beauty for decades. With bespoke formulas suitable for amateurs and professionals alike, these multi-functional more-than-skincare products get you going into the day with your best face forward. Shadowy under eye? A little tint from Eye Eye Captain will brighten, whilst the formula hydrates and its metal applicator depuffs. Want a little more? Let’s Face It will even skin tone and cover blemishes. With a formula that melts seamlessly into the skin, it’s your secret weapon when striving for skin confidence.
They are here, they are new, they are breaking the rules. If you’re after skincare that’s adaptable in its uses, whilst working really hard for your skin and requiring minimal effort from the user, Faace’s trio of products allows you to swiftly choose your champion. Sweaty Faace cools and detoxifies skin that’s feeling hot and oily from changes in temperature in your day. Period Faace rebalances hormonal or breakout skin and soothes inflammation. Last but not least, Tired Faace offers a boost for lacklustre and neglected skin, hydrating and healing whilst providing the ultimate perk up. These three can be used alone as moisturiser or as a hydrating primer before your makeup to ‘faace the day’. If you need more, a fuller layer acts as a mask when left on for five, ten, twenty minutes – or even overnight. This is reactive skincare for every mood.
When it comes to sport, Boudavida are creating a new space for activewear to fit in your wardrobe, by mixing exquisite fashion with exceptional functionality. Their pieces offer the inspiration to get up and get moving, wherever your fitness journey may take you. The Swift Skapri shorts offer form-fitting ease of movement, with a wrap skirt to glide over any area you want an extra bit of coverage. Taking it over to accessories, the Cushty Tote offers everything you need, but rarely get from a gym bag. A yoga mat strap, internal compartments for wet kit, trainers and valuables, all whilst being comfortable and manageably sized and styled to be wearable out of the gym too. As if that wasn’t enough, the brand’s dedication to their audience is also a big part of their mission, with 5% of all profits being donated to beneficiaries which support women in sport. Truly a testament to the company’s namesake, Boudicca, the Celtic warrior Queen.