Hello everyone

The beauty business – it’s a strange one. Think how it’s changed over the years. It used to be ‘let’s go down Boots’, after a frothy coffee in that new-fangled coffee bar. And once in Boots, the Chemist, you’d get a Helena Rubenstein lipstick or maybe Elizabeth Arden (my mother’s choice plus don’t forget the powder) and then for us teenagers it was Max Factor for the blue eye-shadow and the block of mascara or maybe Coty.

But now we have a myriad of brands and products to choose from. Even celebs have their brands. A new one is coming from Victoria Beckham – actually, a woman I admire. Boots, the Chemist is still going strong but it’s the internet where a huge number of sales come from.  And the promotion of these brands. It’s all on the internet now. I expect you’ve heard of these YouTube beauty ‘influencers’. They’re people with 2million plus followers on Instagram and YouTube. They’re so far outside my peripheral vision I hardly think about them apart from every now and then, when I say to myself – how do you get stuff sent to you?  I never have (apart from two items from White Hot Hair last year). On reflection (because I have been thinking a lot about this) I think it’s best to keep it that way. Anyway I’m  too tiny to get freebies. And that’s good because that means I can speak my mind about products and not be beholden to anyone.

But there is a downside to this way of promoting beauty products. I’ve just read an article on how these influencers get so many products for free they not only throw away shed loads untouched, there’s a new trend on anti-hauls (saying what you haven’t bought); project pans (using old products to finish them up – there’s 12.4m project pan YouTube videos out there apparently); empties (showing everything you have used up) and; declutters (that’s getting rid of 90% of foundations) and listen to this, people, when owning more than 1000 products.

Gosh, I mean, splutter, I mean, what! Because the thing is, I have hardly any products in my makeup drawer. And mainly they’re Clarins and Look Fabulous Forever.  And until I started my YouTube channel I thought that was fine. And you know what? I still do. I am very much of the opinion you don’t buy makeup until you’ve actually finished the tube of makeup! Think single-plastic use and the environmental impact of it all.  I’m getting to be quite militant these days, as should we all.  Also the packaging – why a cardboard box over a plastic container? Just don’t. But, amazingly the Instagram and blogging industry is waking up to this. For instance, there’s an Instagram collective called Estee Laundry (yes, spelt like that) that’s flagging up bad behaviour in the beauty industry including lack of diversity and sustainability and especially unsubstantiated product claims – good for them, I say.

But I do love my makeup. I do love putting on makeup.  And. I love having a makeover.

Last week I had a lovely experience getting a makeover at the Look Fabulous Forever pop-up shop in Wimbledon.


Took my hat as well! Do go if you can – it costs £50 but the £50 is redeemable against any products bought after the makeover.

There I met Tricia Cusden the founder of Look Fabulous Forever. Just look below at those scrumptious products.  The people serving you and making you up will advise you on your skin colour – warm or cool – and give you lots of helpful hints and tips.

My makeover was done by the fabulous Julie.

And here, below, is afterwards. You know, I found it awfully hard to accept that I looked fine with lipstick. But it’s good to be challenged and have a new look.

There you go, it’s OK!

See, under bright lights I’m quite lined and wrinkled, but I earnt those lines and I own them. Show them off I say and be proud!

Another great pic below. This time of Barbara who also does makeovers at the Wimbledon pop-up. There is nowhere quite like this place for giving older women confidence and a boost.

And if you can’t go then look at the website and take in some tutorials – there’s nothing like Look Fabulous Forever in their attitude towards and approach to older women, they’re the best in the business. Yes, Look Fabulous Forever really is the business.

Sorting out the two products I took home (all part of the £50 I paid). And here below is a mirror selfie. Thank you Look Fabulous Forever for a great time and a joyful experience.

Do hop over to YouTube as we filmed a 30-minute video of this makeover – icon on the side or below if on a phone.  Do also, forgive the sound quality. You can hear us and it’s fine, but another time we would have given both me and Julie a mic. We’re still bumbling amateurs and we’re learning all the time.

And then, in 2-3 weeks, there’ll be another video of me at home reproducing the makeover.  I’ll be interpreting the look and making it my own, plus giving you some honest and unbiased opinions.

That’s all for now. I’ll be back early next week with some amazing bargains found in Bexhill’s charity shops 🙂

With love, Penny, the Frugalfashionshopper

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33 thoughts on “The makeup business – new developments and trends plus a joyful experience

  • 12th April 2019 at 10:57 am

    It’s a worthwhile makeover, as we all need a boost now and then. I have a look in my mind that I would like to emulate, but try as I may I fail every time. Maybe a salon here in Chichester would be lucrative, and I know a lot of ladies in their 50s and 60s would love it. Keep blogging I love to read your comments and see your photos!!!

    • 12th April 2019 at 2:40 pm

      I’ll pass the message on that a pop-up might do well in Chichester. I don’t always agree with everything done in a makeover but you learn from them, I think. My local beauty salon has a beautician who is ace at makeovers – so I go more to her than anyone else. Like LFF she’s very sensitive to how older women want their makeup to look and that is so important. And thank you so much for your feedback – I’ll always do this blog as I love the writing of it so – thank you again 🙂

  • 12th April 2019 at 11:15 am

    You look really great! I share your misgivings re the lippy, but it really balances the eyes. I have red hair (still red at 67), and have always had pale eyebrows: on the rare occasions I have put on brow colour I have scrubbed it right off again, because it looks totally not me! I agree the face needs framing, but my fringe does that for me. I’ve had my eyelashes dyed since I was 21, essential!

    • 12th April 2019 at 2:43 pm

      Thank you for the feedback – but gosh I don’t know whether I’ll ever be comfortable with lipstick partly due to my dry and peeling lips and actually just the colour. I’m just not used to it!

      There is an art to putting on the eyebrows and Julie was very light in her touch – but I get what you’re saying. If it doesn’t look right, it doesn’t look right!

  • 12th April 2019 at 2:00 pm

    I too have had a makeover at the LFF Wimbledon pop up shop, which I thoroughly enjoyed.
    However, this blog sounds a bit too much like an advert to me. It was also noticeable that you started your blog declaring that you do not receive any freebies from cosmetic producers, and I wonder why you thought that was necessary.
    I have been following both your blogs for over 2 years and always enjoy them and in general agree with what you say. Please don’t spoil it. Keep independent.

    • 12th April 2019 at 2:55 pm

      Hi Lindy
      I stressed that i) I don’t accept freebies and ii) this makeover was paid for by me because many bloggers do accept ‘gifts’. The phrase is ‘this item was gifted’. Or ‘I was invited …’ There’s absolutely nothing wrong with that but I’ve decided not to go down that road. And won’t either on my YouTube makeup channel as I thought, for a moment, well that’s separate from the blog, but after some deliberation about that, the answer (to myself) was no.

      Anyway, first and foremost I’m a writer and that’s what I love about blogging 🙂 And I’m so glad you read both my blogs!

  • 12th April 2019 at 2:07 pm

    Ah, that was a nice little trip down memory lane, thank you. Coty! I’d forgotten that completely… remembered they did sachets of shampoo smelling the same as their perfume God, I thought I was sophisticated with that!
    I’m 73 next month and have been enjoying/wearing make-up for 60 years. I began copying my glamourous Aunty Gerty – red nails and lips, great clothes and shoes (coincidentally, she lived in Brighton.) She was the lingerie buyer for Harvey Nichols and twice a week a taxi took her to catch the train from Brighton to London. She had breakfast on the train and then a taxi from Victoria to Knightsbridge. (It was all long, long way from my native Romford!)
    Anyway, Gerty showed me how to use make-up and gave me her cast-offs; Helena Rubenstein, Revlon and Charles of the Ritz come to mind. She emphasised it was essential to cleanse and moisturise, “A lady must moisturise from the age of 25, but it’s good to start sooner, and never pull the skin under your eyes.” So, desperate to be grown up, I followed her instructions from about 14 – first with my mother’s Pond’s Cold Cream & Vanishing Cream and then I switched to Oil of Ulay, as it was then called.
    In those days my make-up shopping began and ended in Woolworths; Rimmel (mascara), Max Factor (lipstick) and Cutex (nail polish) have remained among my favourites most of that time. I also like Beauty Pie, Clarins and Elemis for cleansing/moisturising. For a few months in the 60s I was an Avon rep. (Haven’t seen one of them for years; quite liked some of their products.)
    I could do with being as organised as you – but I’m a hoarder and still use stuff that I’ve had for donkey’s years if it’s the right colour etc. – despite what the ‘experts’ advise.
    I still enjoy experimenting with my look (clothes and make-up) and it’s interesting how people respond to different looks.
    You looked good after your make-over and I’ll look forward to you re-creating the look yourself in the next few weeks. I’ll be interested to hear if you enjoyed the lipstick – I thought it suited you (and that you can take a stronger colour, if you wished).
    Enjoy your weekend, Mary

    • 12th April 2019 at 3:06 pm

      If I could wear lipstick it would be coral. I couldn’t really warm to the colour put on by Julie – it was for me just a bit too much, but that’s because I hadn’t worn lipstick for about 10 years now as I have to be so careful that I don’t go full-on Jack Nicolson’s Joker look!

      And those beauty names! Oil of Olay, Cutex and Rimmel. And of course, Pond’s Cold Cream! Do you remember lipstick having a particular smell? Your aunt sounds so exotic and rather wonderful.

      Like you I started taking care of my skin from 14 onwards although I did have rather awful acne. Not the scarring kind but even so I had to take care of the skin around the spots!!! It was no consolation at the time but my mother told me I would have good skin when I was old – turned out she was right.

      Have a good weekend too!

  • 12th April 2019 at 2:08 pm

    I think you look good with lipstick Penny!
    I used to buy my make-up from Woolworths. I remember the brand Miners & I’m sure there were others I can’t recall. When my children were young I was an Avon lady & I still think their products are very good and very well priced. It’s only recently that I’ve paid a bit more for foundation to cover my red spotty skin. I still mostly use mid priced bands because they work fine for me. I use LFF primers and concealer & some eye shaddow and brushes but I can’t bring myself to spend so much on a lipstick! I’ve just come back from a singing/optional walking holiday where most women were around my age and out of 9 only one wore any make-up at all. Of the other 40 or so people on the full time walking holiday only 4 wore any. Interesting.
    I think it’s quite easy to be a makeup/skincare ‘junkie’ because the manufacturers play on the insecurities we all have about our looks and exploit the fantasy that somewhere, somehow, there must be something that will give us back the face we used to know and probably didn’t appreciate at the time. The best rejuvinator is a smile and you get that from being with people and enjoying yourself!

    • 12th April 2019 at 3:20 pm

      Hello Linda – yes, I know that there are huge numbers of women who don’t wear makeup. But honestly I do believe that putting on a layer of makeup throughout my life has prevented age spots and other worse damage on my face. However, I think the makeup thing is imprinted as all through my childhood my mother put on her ‘face’. And I am just the same. My daughter meanwhile doesn’t mainly because of acne rosacea – and she doesn’t want to upset her skin by trying anything, so she just leaves her face bare.

      I have tried other products but really LFF and Clarins are my go-to makeup brands. Plus No7 for moisturisers. Can’t afford anything too pricey.

      And truly I’m not sure about the lipstick – not a look I quite accept.

  • 12th April 2019 at 2:47 pm

    How fabulous that you were able to meet Tricia. She was in our Chicy Blinders video last year, and such an inspiration.
    I’m like you…I can’t imagine that much makeup…it seems like such a waste. I’ve gotten a few things from companies, and if they aren’t my coloring, then I try to give them away to friends or readers in my email giveaway!!
    You look absolutely beautiful. I’ve been saying that I’m embracing my wrinkles….both in my clothing and on my face…LOL!! It’s so freeing not to worry about them.

    • 12th April 2019 at 3:31 pm

      I met Tricia about 5 years ago, on Twitter would you believe, and meet up with her about twice a year – we feel the same way about many things.

      Re: the freebies – I have thought about this a lot, but have decided to not go down that road. I’m a writer more than anything else and believe in writing about issues as well as the clothes and makeup – hence the comments about single-use plastic, general waste and the move the industry is slowly taking towards sustainability. We have to begin to take care of this planet. Today my bus was held up for a children’s demonstration on the environment – they are our future. I’m with them 100% and didn’t mind the delay. It’s by far the most important issue ever and I think I might start demonstrating again! I was always going on marches when I was younger and took the kids with me all the time. Pleased to say my daughter and son-in-law are doing that now – good for them. End of rant of the day, Jodie! Have a great weekend x

  • 12th April 2019 at 4:04 pm

    I love makeup, and can’t imagine going out without it, especially lipstick ! I would feel naked, in fact one day recently somehow I did forget to put some on, and when I realised, I just wanted to scuttle home as fast as possible. That said, I think an over made-up face looks awful, also I spend very little on products, just the necessary, a good foundation etc and a new lipstick from time to time for a treat. I remember haunting the beauty counters of Woolworth’s with my best friend, yes Miners was our brand! I think I was also inspired by a very chic Aunt, watching her do her face, the lipsticks then did have a lovely scent. I would love to have a make-over, as I think eye makeup is in particular a sticky one for older women ( due to the wrinkles ! ) I had a lovely make-over at the Clinique counter years ago, it was very natural, but a better looking me ! I didn’t want to take it off. I’ve had a look at your beauty tutorials, Penny, and will be back for another look.

    • 13th April 2019 at 8:01 am

      I’d forgotten Woolworth’s and their brand, and like you, yes, I did hover over their counters. Isn’t it interesting that several of us here have been influenced by an aunt or mother who used makeup. And lipsticks then smelt wonderful.

      Makeovers can also be found in a good quality beauty salon. Over the years I’ve learnt to weed out the salons that are just full of young things. The one I go to now has a manager who is just that bit older than her staff and she’s just wonderful at a makeover.

      Thanks for your comment Maisie – have a good weekend 🙂

    • 13th April 2019 at 8:01 am

      It was!

  • 12th April 2019 at 5:55 pm

    Hi Penny,
    You do look fabulous! I think you suit lipstick but that colour is totally wrong for you. I wear make up every day at home or out and about, I always ‘got ready’ for work and when I was younger didn’t wear it at home but now I like my face much better with!
    I agree that all those old names brought back lots of memories, I can still smell my mum’s make up, the lipstick and powder always smelt so special. She used only vanishing cream, lipstick and powder and would put her face on after she finished her morning housework – never leaving the house without it.
    I sympathise with your daughter, acne rosacea is horrible, I suffered for years and couldn’t wear anything but lipstick and mascara, it does settle down eventually but the red patches take a long time to fade, the secret is to use only very gentle products I find, at the moment I’m using Clinique cleansers etc. which seem not to irritate at all.
    A very interesting post, thank you.
    Happy weekend

    • 13th April 2019 at 8:12 am

      Thank you Chrissie. Yes, the face powder had a distinct smell as did the lipstick – if I close my eyes I can still remember it.

      Yes, between you, me and the gatepost, that lipstick colour was totally the wrong colour – maybe a pink or a coral but never that darker colour – felt all wrong! There, I’ve said it. Watch the video I do in a couple of weeks time for some comments on what I liked and what I didn’t, which for me is the point, as you have to make these makeovers work for yourself. You learn from them but you don’t have to copy everything slavishly.

      Will talk to my daughter about her skin next time I see her. Thanks so much for your comment – have a good weekend 🙂

  • 12th April 2019 at 6:04 pm

    Certainly a trip down memory lane. My mother’s eldest sister and her husband ran a chemist shop in London, Baker Street in the 50s and 60s. They would visit us in Derbyshire on the Bank Holiday weekends and bring with them testers and unsold stock of makeup and nail polish. All my aunts were quite glamorous with their red lips and nail colour. As a young teenager I was introduced to foundation (Max Factor). By 15/16 my friends and I had graduated to Mary Quant makeup – remember the daisy motif? We thought we were very avantgard. I too discovered LFF and enjoy light make-up to go out and about, though I don’t really bother for days at home. As far as lips go, I always have something on, usually Clinique Chubby Stick tinted lip balm and if my lips ever dry out or peel from being in the garden I use Body Shop Lip Scuff exfoliator.

    • 13th April 2019 at 8:18 am

      Fascinating how glamorous aunts feature in our introduction to makeup! My intro was from my mother but several of you have mentioned aunts – so interesting.

      And I hadn’t remembered Mary Quant makeup although I swear I bought a ginger wool Mary Quant skirt plus matching jacket, which was quite daring in those days – well it was amongst my friends!.

      I use a Christian Dior scrub which is a also a stain and a moisturiser – this does give my lips some colour and cover whilst dealing with the drying and peeling. Such pain as I always wore lipstick.

      Thanks for your comment – have a great weekend 🙂

  • 12th April 2019 at 7:19 pm

    I remember buying Miner’s make up as a teenager in the 60’s, just what we needed as it was cheap but good!
    I’m lucky to have reasonable skin as a 70 year old, never smoked and used Astral on my face for many years. I currently used Nivea Cellular Anti Age serum, day and night cream but also use No7 if I run out.
    My point is, I would never ever leave home without lipstick! I wear glasses so can get away without eye make up and foundation, which I only wear at weekends. I feel that lipstick is essential as you get older, as lips get thinner and paler and seem to disappear. I have several No7 shades, but like Sugar Plum for daily use, have also goba Look Fabulous Forever one which I quite like! I also think that there’s nothing wrong with a good red if you get one which is the right tone for your skin! I do admit I wear colour correction too as
    I have the dreaded dark circles under my eyes, and it does help to a certain degree.
    I feel I need to experiment more but, as I live in only 4 miles from the Scottish Border, I don’t have the luxury of visiting a pop up shop! Maybe Tricia could bring this to either Newcastle or Edinburgh, I’m sure she’d get plenty of visitors. I also refuse to buy expensive make up, I can’t afford it and there are so many brands on the market now that you can buy good quality without spending a fortune!

    • 13th April 2019 at 8:24 am

      So interesting to read about your beauty regime and great to hear about your skin. I think a lot of us at our age do have good skins – something that beauty PR people don’t seem to recognise apart from using Helen Mirren again and again!

      I think LFF does do some travelling around the country. But the place I go to most of the time is my trusted local beauty salon. It isn’t easy to find a good one with mature beauticians that you can trust but that’s what you want/need to find – hope you do 🙂

      Thanks so much for your comment – have a good weekend 🙂

  • 13th April 2019 at 7:08 am

    Ah yes I remember Miners, Outdoor Girl and Woolworth’s own brand Evette. Lately I’ve not been buying any new beauty products, just restocking when something runs out. It means I’ve had to turn my back on the lovely new things and brands, but strangely, a couple of people have said on Insta my skin is looking good, so the LFF products and Imedeen tablets are working! Hopping over to the video shortly. Thanks for joining #WowOnWednesday!

    • 13th April 2019 at 7:52 am

      Miners! Several people have mentioned this brand and I’d forgotten. So glad you’re restocking as you run out. Read an article recently that the young will have to have a very very much smaller carbon footprint than we do – I think it just hasn’t sunk in how unsustainable our lives are. We do what we can but something has to change.

      I love your Wednesday share – thanks for hosting it 🙂

  • 13th April 2019 at 8:44 am

    £50 is a lot of money for someone on a UK state pension.

    • 13th April 2019 at 8:54 am

      I totally get that. Yes, it is. The £50 goes against any buys but even so if your budget is tight it would be too much. We must never forget that many rely just on the state pension – in the town I used to live in there were many who did. And of course there will be many in Brighton – it just looks more affluent. However, look at the LFF site for free videos, and in my ‘Daytime Looks’ I throw in frugal tips as I have a tight budget as well.

      Btw, my beauty salon does a makeover for free. I shall do a blog shortly on makeup and moisturisers for under £15. Sally Hughes of the Guardian did two great articles of makeup from Aldi and beauty bargains that can be bought for under £15. Here’s the link

      Have a good weekend and thanks for your important comment 🙂

  • 13th April 2019 at 12:42 pm

    I also had a glamorous aunt! She got married at the elderly age of 25 and she and my Uncle were very fond of me. I was their bridesmaid at 5 and, apparently, I walked up and pushed myself between them at the altar! I can still smell her powder when she was applying it at the dining room mirror in my grandparents back room. She had Revlon nail varnish in bottles with a long transparent handled brush. So sophisticated! She wore the pointed-toed stiletto heeled shoes that were fashionable then, pencil skirts and stockings with seams. My Mum was actually much better looking and could also look lovely herself but was very busy with us children so often had a scarf tied round her head and a pinny on which seemed a bit ordinary to me.

  • 13th April 2019 at 4:32 pm

    What a fab treat!
    I’ve had make up done at various cosmetic counters but never feel they quite get it right (is that me be arrogant suggesting that I know better)? I always feel that it is too reserved – not that I wear loads when I do it myself.
    I’d love someone to do smokey eyes on me but I want impact, not subtlety! I’d probably think it looked over the top, but I’d just like to see for myself!

    • 16th April 2019 at 7:54 am

      Honestly Eloise – how many years have you been putting on makeup??? I bet it’s longer than any makeup artist on any counter or in any beauty salon. I’ve been putting on makeup for 55 years!!!! And no, you’re not being arrogant – you just know what you like!

      Watch the video I’ll be putting on in approx 2 weeks time where I adapt the LFF look and put on very smoky eyes with their eye-shadow – which is great, btw. So I learnt from the makeover, but it’s different to the makeover 🙂

  • 14th April 2019 at 7:34 am

    What a treat Penny – so enjoyed the watching the process . I will be interested to see your version as it did look rather complicated, especially the eyes but they did look very good. I was interested that they don’t use eyeliner just eye shadow with an eye liner brush. The other thing that surprised me was that they didn’t use a lip liner either – I find it helps with lipstick not bleeding and staying longer. I a, I agree the colour wasn’t right for you .
    I have looked at the products on their web site but with the conversion rate and postage , they are not an option.

    • 16th April 2019 at 7:49 am

      Yes, watch my version which will come out in approx 2 weeks time, and sooner if I can, but they are time-consuming to do. I’ll aim to recreate the look but actually will make it my own 😉

      I now that Tricia does sell abroad, but I know what you’re saying as so many products advertised on US blogs don’t sell in the UK and/or the postage and other customs stuff make it impossible to buy.

      And back to lip-liner. When I put on the Christian Dior product I always use a lip-liner.

  • 14th April 2019 at 8:38 am

    You look fabulous, what a charming idea. Is the foundation somewhat warmer than you usually wear or is it the lights? Looks great too! Thanks for sharing, I’ll be checking out your vlog Penny. Jacqui Mummabstylish

    • 16th April 2019 at 7:42 am

      Thank you Jacqui – it is a warmer tinted moisturiser that was put on. Watch the video I’ll put out in a couple of weeks where I try to recreate the ‘look’. I have my views on that and the moisturiser 🙂

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