It’s a familiar scenario. You need a new moisturiser, but you’re overwhelmed by endless products that seem to do the same thing. So naturally, we jumped for joy when BeautyMART came to Topshop. Founded by Millie Kendall of Ruby & Millie fame and former Vogue Beauty Director Anna-Marie Solowij, BeautyMART is our one-stop shop for hard-to-find products that really work. You can shop BeautyMART directly on Topshop.com here or get the boutique experience instore at our London Oxford Circus flagship.
We caught up with co-founder Millie to get the scoop on her desert island products and beauty moments she’d rather forget!
What makes BeautyMART different from the tones of other beauty stores out there?
None are really doing what we do, selecting and editing the best products and selling them in a fun and exciting place with brilliant and knowledgeable staff and superb service. Traditionally beauty stores and chemists sell brands, not individual products and the sales staff are brand-trained, not impartial. We look at products like a magazine editor would. So you get only the most interesting, high performing, fashion-focused finds.
How did you know Anna was the right person to start your business with?
I have known Anna since she was the Beauty Editor at ELLE magazine and watched her career unsurprisingly lead her to become Beauty Director at Vogue. She is ultimately a great curator of beauty and that is the backbone of BeautyMART.
Do you ever disagree over products?
All the time, if we didn’t it wouldn’t be the edited array it is. We use cosmetics differently; have different skin, hair and features so we like different things as well as the products we both love.
Do you test everything yourself?
Absolutely. It has to pass the test!
If you had to choose one product to use for the rest of your life, what would it be?
Gosh that is so hard! Balmain Salt Spray probably. It is the best product to create that beach hair look, and I grew up in LA so need a bit of beach with me everywhere I go!
Have you ever made a big beauty mistake?
All the time, I wouldn’t be able to do my job if I hadn’t! When I look at old pictures I wonder why I ever left the house thinking I looked OK and then I find those looks being reinvented and think that perhaps sometimes what seemed like a mistake was simply just fashionable. Have confidence and you can pull anything off!
What’s your favourite make-up look at the moment?
I have been so anti-bronzer for years, but now I love a good matte bronze and some contour. It really accentuates the cheekbones and can be worn by anyone.
What advice would you give to someone looking to start their own business?
Have guts and passion and expect not to sleep much!
There are so many skincare products on the market – sometimes the choice can be overwhelming! What do you think is the one product that really makes a difference?
Embryolisse cream, it’s the best all round moisturiser I have ever used and is backstage at the shows. If a make-up artist loves it you can’t go wrong.
And with make-up?
What do you think is the most common beauty myth?
That eyebrows look good painted on! They only look good when they look natural! I see so many hideous incarnations of brows. And it is true, as you age brows don’t grow back so don’t over-pluck!