What every beauty brand can learn from Charlotte Tilbury

I found myself watching a video last night of Charlotte Tilbury doing makeup on the lovely Nic Chapman (Pixiwoo). I’ve watched a number of videos of Charlotte at work and also being interviewed (you simply must check out this eye opening interview with Sali Hughes from Sali’s ‘In The Bathroom’ series where Charlotte reveals she REAPPLIES her makeup, INCLUDING MASCARA, before bed?!).

Where was I? Yes, Charlotte (to me) always seems to come across the same; energetic, enthusiastic and humbled by her success. As a makeup artist and also a punter I find her enthusiasm for cosmetics completely infectious. It’s no wonder the brand that carries her name is enjoying such tremendous success.

Naturally the cynic in me says ‘Well of course she’s enthusiastic. She’s probably a multi millionaire, what with her own best selling makeup brand!” But I genuinely believe there’s something to be gleaned from the consistency with which she presents herself to the world.

In today’s competitive world brands that do well often embody people. They have personalities and attributes. A potential disaster move for a brand, particularly as they grow in size, is when they hire the wrong kinds of people. I adore shopping in Space NK but find it infuriating when I enter a Space NK store to find what I love about that brand has been completely overshadowed by the egos of the people who run that particular shop. I’d be amazed if Charlotte Tilbury headquarters didn’t actively recruit people bearing similar traits to Charlotte.

For some reason, whilst thinking about all of this I also got to thinking about pedicures (random). On the rare occasion that I treat myself to a pedicure (about once a year, if that) I’ll generally go somewhere I’ve been before on the basis I know the ‘brand’ and trust them to do a good job (again, nothing worse than when the experience doesn’t live up to the expectation. Sigh.

As someone trying to grow my own brand I often think about the importance of being genuine and how this attracts the right kind of people. After all, it’s impossible to be everyone’s cup of tea, but if you’re true to yourself, the right kind of person is likely to respond. In the beginning I tried to be someone I wasn’t and guess what, growth was slow. Now that I’m learning to embrace who I am and what makes me different, the change is visibly there.

Before we wrap up talking about Charlotte and what a character she is, here are three of my favourite Charlotte Tilbury products:

Lip Cheat in ‘Pillow Talk’  (£16)
I wear this pretty much every other day and will happily apply it under any lipstick. Its velvety texture is unlike anything I’ve experienced before and as lip pencils go (and boy are there some terrible ones out there) it’s excellent at preventing lip colour from bleeding. Charlotte’s pencils are designed to ‘cheat’ your natural lip line (assuming one would like slightly fuller lips) so as such it comes in a range of different tones to suit all (or at least most?) ethnicities.

The Dolce Vita Luxury Palette  (£38)
When I first saw the earthy red shade in this quad I thought “there’s no way I’m putting that on my eyes”, but it just works. I’ve got green eyes and with red being the opposite of green on the colour spectrum anything with reddy or purply undertones is going to make my eyes sing. This is my go-to palette whenever I want to create an interesting smokey eye and I love love love the glittery ‘pop’ shade which goes over the moveable part of the eye. Rumour has it Charlotte helped Tom Ford design his cosmetics line and if you look at his shadow quads and hers there are many similarities.

OK so I lied, I have two. But MAN do I want to test this baby out! Launching soon. Love the fact the shades are numbered and that the numbers will fade once you get the hang of it and the product wears down. The woman’s a genius. Either that or the people behind her are.

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