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The Beauty Edit.
A photograph of the Beauty Edit Pop-Up at Westfield London

The Beauty Edit Blog - with A-lister Skincare Expert, Nilam Holmes

Working from home has helped women embrace a more natural look, and embrace less heavy make-up

We’ve seen a rise in holistic beauty including skincare and wellness products over the past couple of years due to a number of factors – for example, a huge number of people opting to work from home on a regular basis has encouraged many to embrace a much more natural look and rely less on heavier makeup.

This is supported by Westfield’s How We Shop research1 which revealed that half (49%) of women admit to spending the most money each month on skincare products, compared to haircare (26%) and make up (20%). The main reason I’m so excited about this shift to holistic beauty and The Westfield Beauty Edit pop up taking place this month is because it offers an unique opportunity for people to go and get free advice, consultations and demonstrations to get a bespoke skincare plan that suits them.

With so much information online, it can be overwhelming and leaves many confused on which products to purchase. Seeing a consultant face-to-face really is invaluable when it comes to the correct skincare, as each of us have unique skin on a cellular basis. With 80 diverse beauty and wellbeing retailers at Westfield across both London centres, there is something for everyone.  

How to get the ‘no-makeup-makeup’ look

According to the research, women admit to going makeup free 3-4 days a week – over half of the year – as they turn to wellness enhancing skincare products as a priority. So with this in mind, I wanted to share how to achieve that natural glow!

First of all, remember that you can’t get a good glow from just make-up alone. Glowy skin comes from within, so it’s important to focus on your wellness and treat the inside as well as using the right skincare on the outside. 

My main tips are to have a balanced diet and lifestyle, get enough sleep and of course, drink lots of water – at least 2 litres every day. When it comes to skincare, it is important to incorporate exfoliation into your routine to get rid of dead skin cells that make the skin look dull and lacklustre. Any products you use thereafter will be more effective and these should include a hyaluronic acid to hydrate the skin and vitamin C to brighten and give you that glow. The bonus is that, as the sun comes out, Vitamin C strengthens your skin to give you that extra protection from UV rays.

Happy life = happy skin!

The findings from Westfield show that a happy life truly does make for happier skin, with a third (34%) of women reporting that stress has a negative impact on their skin. This is compared to 18% of men!

You can’t rely on products alone to maintain healthy skin and must acknowledge if stress is having an impact. Whether it is internal or external stress, make sure that you address the impacts as it could be due to illness, work, family or your wider lifestyle. When we are stressed, we release a stress hormone called cortisol which causes inflammation. It is this inflammation that leads to an array of skin issues like breakouts and generally unhappy skin. Therefore prioritising self-care is so important. Incorporating meditation, exercise and generally things that make you feel good into your lifestyle and taking supplements is a really great way of making sure your body maintains balance and the right levels of vitamins and minerals to function effectively. So many brands are now introducing wellness products to support their beauty ranges, especially those found at Westfield London and Westfield Stratford City.  

What’s HOT?

Vitamin C leads the way with over a third (37%) of women saying they’ve newly incorporated the health boosting serum to their beauty regime in the past year. SPF also made the top 10 (21%), as well as cleanser (35%), retinol (18%) and essential oils (18%).   Vitamin C is a powerful ingredient in skincare because of the multitude of benefits it brings to the skin. It is an incredible antioxidant, has hydrating and brightening properties, helps even out skin tone and boosts the skin’s ability to protect itself from UV damage.

When it comes to choosing a Vitamin C product, it is important to remember it has a low pH so can be an irritant to the skin, therefore the formulation and percentage matters. Vitamin C works amazingly alongside Vitamin E and Ferulic acid - Skinceuticals has an amazing product with this formulation! I always advise to patch test a serum to decide whether it is suitable for you. Once you have found the right formulation for you, Vitamin C will be one of the products that you will skin cycle and introduce into your routine slowly. Skin cycling is basically a diary for your skincare routine using your products based on a periodic schedule - daily, weekly and seasonally - to get the most effective and safe use out of your products.

Let’s talk about SPF

SPF is important all year round. We forget that when it’s cloudy and gloomy that our skin is still susceptible to damage from UV rays. With spring on the horizon, it is a reminder to get into the habit of applying an SPF daily (and maybe also time to check the expiry dates on the products you may still be using from last year). If you aren’t very good at applying a separate SPF, there are so many hybrid products like moisturisers and makeup that have SPF in them. I love Charlotte Tilbury’s Flawless Poreless Primer, because not only does it give you filtered skin it has SPF 50 PA++++, UVA and UVB protection. For those that love to get a tan, SPF won’t stop you from tanning completely, it will just ensure you are tanning more safely.

A photograph of Invisible flawless poreless primer by Charlotte Tilbury

My Best Buys

With the cost-of-living crisis, people are migrating more towards affordable drugstore skincare brands. Brands like Cerave, Cetaphil and The Ordinary have become cool cult favourites. My own bathroom shelf is a mix of both high-end, pricier brands and drugstore brands.  Skincare doesn’t have to be expensive to be effective. Check them out!


1Research conducted Research Without Barriers between 3rd- 6th March 2023 with 2,014 UK adults.

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