Liz Earle, a brand I admire for several reasons – one of the main ones being that it is a British Beauty success story! As most of you know, I am passionate about beauty and the business of beauty, thus I have followed the Liz Earle journey intently over the years. Originally launching on QVC, the brand has seen spectalcular growth – it now has several stand shops around the country, outlets in selected John Lewis and Boots stores and employs over 400 people (according to the Guardian).
Last year I attended the Marie Claire Inspire and Mentor – How to get into Beauty event, where Liz shared her experiences of winning (and sometimes losing!) in the beauty industry.
It was an inspirational afternoon and Liz was charming, enthusiastic and informative – thus endearing me to the brand even more.
So, when the brand ventured into colour cosmetics last year, I did take note, but to be honest, I didn’t expect the range to cater for darker skin tones and the brand’s foray in the world of colour cosmetics with the launch of the Sheer Skin Tint (which comes in 4 shades – the darkest shade, Deep Bisque is way too light for my skintone) did seem to confirm this…
….however, the brand went on to extend its colour offering in September of this year, adding a full suite of products for the face, eyes, lips and cheeks. I remember seeing a Facebook ad promoting the new range, stating that the bases were suitable for Asian skintones and (as you can imagine) I was NOT very happy at all and sent the brand this tweet…
…so you can imagine my delight when I was contacted by the Liz Earle team about the make up range but a few days later and found out that there WERE shades suitable for those with a darker skin tone!
What impeccable timing! 😉
I was sent a few items to try and was also invited to attend a press/blogger breakfast earlier this month at the Liz Earle flagship store just off of Sloane Square. Celebrity make -up artist Pauline Briscoe (who has worked with the likes of Kelly Rowland and whom I have blogged about here) was on hand to demonstrate the quality of the products and their suitability for Asian and Black skin tones.
Pauline works her magic!
It was a lovely event and it was great to catch up with fellow bloggers and journalists – to touch base with old faces and to make some new connections.
Check out more pictures from the event here!
The products in the range to create a flawless canvas include the Signature Foundation (RRP £21), the Perfect Fix Concealer (RRP £13.50) and the Natural Finish Pressed Powder (RRP £19.50).
Firstly, I have to commend the Liz Earle product development team for launching a concealer and a powder at the same time as launching the foundation for darker skin tones, I have complained other brands FAILING to do so in the past, so it was good to see that they thought it necessary from the onset! The brand gains some extra brownie points for this!!
The Signature Foundation.
The foundation range comes in 9 shades that claims to suit all skin tones…
..however the darkest shade, number 9, suits me perfectly (I am a MAC NW45 for your reference) – but for any one darker than me, the range would not be suitable (also, shade 8 is VERY light in comparison – the brand could have done with a few more shades in between)…
…which is a shame because I love this foundation! Out of all of the new foundations that I have tried this year, this is by far my favourite.
The colour match is excellent and the yellow undertones of the product ensure that it blends and virtually disappears!
The brand claims that the ‘innovative formula, enriched with vitamin E and a special mix of spherical particles and coated pigments allows for product to strike the balance between a matte and dewy finish and I have to say that was my experience. The matte finish allowed me to be able to build the foundation to provide the coverage that I desired without it looking too cakey. It lasted all day (which is a triumph – I usually do not get on well with liquid foundations due to my oily skin, but when used in conjenction with a primer, the staying power was formidible) and it does not transfer!
Colour Match: 9/10
Perfect Fix Concealer and Natural Finish Pressed Powder.
I suffer from hyper pigmentation so a concealer is a must. The Liz Earle concealer is highly pigmented and so does the job! I used colour 4, which again matches my skin tone. It is not too heavy for the under eye area, although do use sparingly!
The powder glides onto the skin due to the finely milled, silky formula. Upon first application, it does look slightly too light, but once the natural oils in my skin penetrate and come to the surface, the colour adjusts to provide a perfect finish – it is a winner in my books!
I really did enjoy using this brand not only for the efficacy of the products, but also for the look and feel of the items – I love the deep navy and silver combination of the packaging and I feel it conveys that the brand produces serious, grown up cosmetics. The attention to detail is notable, little things such as the embossed powder puff and the application instructions that accompany each product convince me that this project was a labour of love for the Liz Earle team and I appreciate that.
As Oprah says: “Every detail matter[s] to me because what I know for sure [is] love is in the details..”.
I would like to see the brand feature more women of colour in the marketing communications – this image in-store is typical of the brand’s imagery…
…and NONE of the ‘how to’ videos that are on the Liz Earle website feature a Black or Asian woman. These are things that can be easily incorporated into the communications mix.
Thus, I give the brand 5/10 for marketing output – the lack of imagery of women of colour is compensated for by the fact that the brand has made a concerted effort to connect with the press/bloggers that can reach this end consumer.
Based on the quality of the product, the packaging and the inclusion of all the basic items needed to produce a flawless face a key part of the range that caters to the woman of colour, I give the Liz Earle team a 10/10 for effort!
If the brand had a broader colour range, then it would be a cosmetic line that I would happily recommend to other women of colour, so if you are a Liz Earle skincare fan, make a demand on the brand to extend the range!