Skin First, Make-up Second
Emily Weiss’ cult Glossier skincare brand hits the UK bringing with it a wave a make-up essentials
Article by Lauren Naylor
It’s the name on the face of every beauty devotee, October (2017) saw the most covetable Instagram brand Glossier start shipping to the UK. It takes a hell of a lot for a brand to gain cult status, but this is what Glossier has achieved in the space of three years.
Their sell? “Skin First. Make-up Second.”
So if glowing gym-babe pared-down skin is your bag, you’ll find them a refreshing change to the heavily retouched social media paradigm, and chances are you’ll want a piece of the beauty pie.
Beauty Editor and founder of intothegloss, Emily Weiss, 32, decided to develop a brand which was direct to consumers using her own site to garner feedback and connect with her customers.
The US brand was selling solely through Instagram way before their website was launched, and three years down the line us Brits are able to indulge in one of the most highly anticipated launches since Take That’s comeback (ok, maybe slightly more excitement surrounded the former).
So, why is there so much hype around the brand?
Well, for a start just type #glossier into Instagram to see why (and 804,000 followers can’t be wrong). If the desire for model-esque youthful, dewy skin and the no make-up make up is real, you’ll love the simplicity of Glossier with its insta-grammable, easy-to-use, no fuss and cruelty-free products, and with names like ‘cloud paint’ and ‘milky jelly cleanser’, what’s not to love? On social media we’ve endured feeds clogged with reality stars swilling carbon black toothpaste around their mouths, or slathering the latest black head miracle peel-off mask on their visage, but no-one is paid to endorse Glossier. Their fan base couldn’t be more loyal and the products and the reviews are insanely good, which is also why Weiss now regularly tops Forbes lists.
Starting from just £9 for their do-it-all universal skin balm Balm Dot Com, the simplistic products land on your doorstep in a ultra-cute millennial pink zip pouch, with a sheet of emoji stickers (which kept my son entertained, anyway) and they are as efficacious as cute is their aesthetic.
So if you’re not already in the Glossier candy pink bubble, we’ve chosen our top five products to get you started:
Milky Jelly Cleanser (£15):
If there’s one product to start your love affair with Glossier – here it is. A jelly-like indulgent cleanser for removing the traces of the day which even removes the most stubborn make-up with ease when used dry, while leaving your skin feeling fresh and plump, not tight, sore or stripped like a lot of other cleansers. It’s seriously easy to use and just melts into the skin effortlessly.
It has a blend of five skin conditioners and cleansing agents (one of the ingredients that is used is found in contact lens solution) so basically it is tough on grime but gentle on the areas you need it to be like the eyes. The cleanser has an amazing soft rose scent due to removing of quarter of the H20 content and replacing it with soothing rosewater.
This is probably the brand’s most talked about product, winning an award with Cosmopolitan in 2015. I have no doubt it will win countless awards now it’s available in the UK.
Stretch Concealer (£15):
A faultless concealer that does what it says on the tin, effortlessly stretch and glide over imperfections without caking on top of it. The concealer is made with micro waves (not the cooker, no) which move with the face so basically it doesn’t settle in dry patches or fine lines, it builds very easy and gives a ‘real skin’ finish – it’s a make-up must have.
Balm Dotcom (£10):
In a range of divine flavours; my personal favourites which are birthday balm, coconut and rose – these ultra-hydrating balms are winter must-haves for their multi-tasking properties. The balm can transform chapped lips in seconds, while it can double up for cuticles, dry patches – even eyebrows if you must (probably best to go for the unscented one then). Their waxy formula works to seal in moisture where you need it and they come in the signature cute packaging in millennial pink and white.
Glossier You (£45):
Not technically classed as a perfume, but a ‘skin smell enhancer’ it’s also classed as neither feminine nor masculine (erm, unisex it is then). The scent is described as a mix ’that’s you’ with the description ‘creamy, salty, warm, clean’; so it begs the question – what does ‘you’ smell like?
Well, although slightly ambiguous – I think, ‘I’ smell really good.
It’s an addictive mix that makes you feel cosy and warm, and the scent is ultimately your own; it’s comforting and it feels personal. But I’d expect nothing less when the olfactory expert behind the blend also created Le Labo Santal 33. The three base notes are ambrette (described as warm), ambrox (a salty, synthetic compound; stay with me here) and a long-lasting addictive musk. The top notes include earthy iris root and spicy pink pepper.
To me, (or you) and on me, not you – it smells a bit like D & G Light Blue – but perhaps that’s my own pheromones. I do find it disappears quite quickly and it doesn’t have the intensity of my usual scents – but perhaps other people are more in tune to the scent, and it fades, much like the cult Molecule, remember it? Where the user can’t actually smell it, but by jove does the rest of the room!
Cloud Paint (£15):
Just when blusher had started to get boring along comes this inspiring little tube of cream blush that produces a delicious sheer wash of colour with just enough pigment. The gel-cream blush has Instagram cult status, and anyone who is anyone is slathering it on their cheeks. One of the key ingredients is collagen which retains water and helps visually plump up the skin with moisture, and there are blurring powder pigments to give a soft, diffused finish.
The pretty shades flatter a variety of skin tones and a simple pea-sized dot or less will bring a healthy glow to your complexion. I find the best way to apply is using a pitter patter motion with your fingertips onto the skin. I’d prefer if this was more of the £10 mark as I do find £15 a little steep for such a small tube – there’s always room for improvement.