Funny side of beauty
Many beauty products have a serious side, with creams and potions to solve skincare concerns and make-up to camouflage imperfections, but you can have fun too, says Suzie Abel, Jarrold’s beauty buyer
The beauty industry in the UK is worth an incredible £17 billion - that’s a lot of lipsticks! It employs more than a million people and is a fascinating field to work in.
I’m lucky to have been involved for many years and it certainly is an industry that gets under your skin, and most develop a passion for it that is never lost. The products are glamorous and exciting with constant innovation and creativity, but there is always an element of playfulness available too.
Benefit is a brand that encapsulates this whimsy perfectly. It was founded in San Francisco in 1976 by sisters Jane and Jean Ford, who were successful models and make-up artists but wanted their own business selling beauty products with a totally new approach. They believed that “make-up doesn’t have to be serious” and “laughter is the best cosmetic”. Their first product was a rose coloured liquid blusher and lip stain called Rose Tint (now known as Benetint and their number one seller), originally created for an exotic dancer who needed a nipple tint! The brand opened in the UK in 1976 and it now has over 2000 counters in 30 countries. I love their Agent ZeroShine Porefessional powder, Boo Boo Zap blemish repair, and Boi-Ing Industrial Strength concealer.
Cowshed is another lovely brand with a sense of fun. It originated in the cow sheds at Babington House in the rolling countryside of Somerset. The natural, wild-crafted and therapeutic range covers all your face and body care needs, as well as lovely mother and baby ranges – Udderly Gorgeous and Baby Cow – and even a range for men. I love this quintessentially British brand, and my favourite is their Moody Cow balancing shower scrub with frankincense and chamomile, but you could have a similar shower scrub depending on your needs called Horny, Lazy, Gorgeous, Wild, Grumpy or Knackered Cow too!
Because this fun element is so popular at the moment, we’ve created our own Beauty Sweet Shop with lots of novelty skincare and make-up lines that are irresistible. Lip balms are always a hit and we have them in the shape of ducks, pigs, sheep, foxes and even burgers and chips – fast food beauty, whatever next!
LEFT: Cowshed Moody Cow balancing shower scrub MIDDLE: Benefit Agent Zero Shine Porefessional Powder RIGHT: NPW Fast Food lip balm duo