It was a chance comment I made on a friend’s Facebook photo on Monday that started it all. As a makeup artist, Laura's pictures are always stunning and this one was so luminous I had to ask her, “are you wearing Charlotte Tilbury by chance?” One comment led to another and she told me about an event for Charlotte Tilbury at Holt Renfrew that she was attending in the next few days and that I should attend too.
Now lately, I've been reading a lot about Charlotte Tilbury, a British makeup artist. In fact, in this month’s InStyle magazine is a mention saying that she was just voted the #1 Makeup Artist in the World. Some of her products I'm dying to try are constantly written up including the Filmstar Bronze and Glow face sculpt and highlight compact, Charlotte’s Magic Cream and the Goddess Skin Clay Mask.
Moments later I received a Facebook message from another friend who works at Holt Renfrew - a heads up about the Charlotte Tilbury event on Oct. 29th "...that would be perfect for you!" Diane gave me the number to call to RSVP for my personal makeup application as well as a meet and greet with the great lady herself. So, naturally the rest is history (this blog post).
The day of the event I made my way to the Charlotte Tilbury counter at Holt Renfrew which was buzzing with excitement as smiling and friendly associates directed us. Women of all ages were already seated, having their makeup done by a team of international experts. I checked in and was quickly introduced to my personal makeup artist Maureen. I settled in with my bottled water to await my own transformation while trying not to touch all the pretty makeup in front of me.
Charlotte Tilbury has developed ten makeup looks to really make it easy for women, one being The Sophisticate, inspired by Audrey Hepburn and Natalie Portman. From a series of cards showing me my choices, Maureen and I both agreed that The Sophisticate was the look for me.
Let me catch my breath and just say KUDOS for the packaging of Charlotte Tilbury products. Everything has that buff silk dressing gown, warm well-lit glow - like a 1930s screen goddess's boudoir. Believe me - look at the photos. You will be sexier just having these items in your bathroom.
Before we started in on the makeup, Maureen tried a generous amount of the clay mask on the back of my hand. It has a lovely, light scent of frangipane and promises minimized pores, a flawless finish and baby skin. As a devotee of the clay mask, I was pleased with the result when it came off. Oh yes, this will be mine.
Maureen began my makeup application by lightly patting the Magic Cream all over my face. The result was hydration heaven! She then applied a small amount of the Wonder Glow Instant Soft-Focus Beauty Flash as well as a light water-based foundation. My friends Diane, Laura and Mairi had found me by that time and were nodding with approval at my emerging glow.
One thing about getting my makeup done professionally is that I “get eyes”. I have lovely eye shadows and products at home but I am mostly a lipstick girl. It’s fun to experiment with a look and to step out of your routine makeup! I got eyes indeed with the Luxury Palettes in The Sophisticate. Maureen expertly sculpted cheek bones with the Filmstar Bronze and Glow. The contouring looked amazing in all light, including daylight - subtle elegance. Little things like that can really make a difference in your makeup.
**Don't just take my word for it! Make an appointment for yourself at the Charlotte Tilbury counter at Holt Renfrew - find YOUR look!**
The finishing touch was a nude lip liner “Pillow Talk”, then K.I.S.S.I.N.G. lipstick in “Hepburn Honey” polished off with a gloss. Wow! My skin felt fabulous and from all the passing comments I received - well let's just say I was feelin' fine.
I got to road test the look (again, in all types of lighting) with my friend Mairi for the next few hours before returning to Holt Renfrew for the meet and greet part of the event from 6-8pm. Patient Mairi...I don't know how many times I asked her how my makeup was doing, but all in the name of research! My skin continued to look dewy without falling into an oily morass and the only thing I had to touch up was my lipstick - which I did with my Tom Ford “Bare”, a perfect compliment to "Hepburn Honey".
I’m glad I heeded the advice from friends to arrive by 5pm as the lineup was already huge. However, we were treated to refreshing tall glasses of iced tea, chocolate lips and a Charlotte Tilbury lipstick cookie! Also, for those of us in the know who possess a Holt Renfrew Icon pass, some free product samples!! I received the Wonder Glow Instant Soft-Focus Beauty Flash and a tiny darling envelope of the K.I.S.S.I.N.G. lipstick in “Nude Kate” (well, we ALL know who that’s named after and she isn’t the one in the Royal Family!) I love this sample. It’s on a card covered with cellophane with instructions to literally place your mouth over the lips and smack the sample on. Adorable!
The moment arrived and Charlotte came down the escalator with a team of gorgeous young models, each sporting one of her signature ten looks, and two Queen’s Guard soldiers to escort her. What an entrance! She took her place on the stage and started in with the highlights of her career and brand. She’s been doing this for twenty three years. With numerous covers on Vogue, Vanity Fair to name a few, she is well known in the celebrity circuit and has worked with many well known photographers and editors.
I wrote notes and tried to capture her fervent message as best I could. In mostly her words:
"One of the most common questions I hear is - “How do I get that look?” I created the brand with that question and more in mind. I made up a wardrobe so women can know exactly what to do. A wardrobe of different “looks”. Think of them as the “ten little black dresses” of makeup, the beigy nude lips, etc."
"Everyone has fallen in love with the brand - it's made makeup easy. The formulas are amazing and do all the work for you with the help of the makeup brushes".
She spoke of her Magic Cream which sold out within six minutes and "the Goddess Clay Mask which gives you poreless, flawless baby skin to be finished off with the Wonder Cream"...and other products including "...the Filmstar Bronze and Glow which makes contouring easy and is a secret makeup artists have used for years…I want to give all my magic secrets away so that everyone can be empowered".
“Give a woman the right makeup, she can conquer the world!”
She is more than gracious and so very appealing…she really takes the time to speak with everyone. I had a few questions I had planned on asking her which I quickly forgot about. Instead I just made notes as she spoke so when it was my turn, I blurted out that I was wearing “the Sophisticate” and a few other things…honestly I think I blanked out. But I have pictures, so I know it happened! She beckoned quickly to an assistant who made some notes on a product cheat sheet for other things which would suit me.
I had the presence of mind to tear out the page from my InStyle magazine with her mention on it before I left home. I asked her to autograph it which she did…”Darling Heather, You’re a Star!”
You know something? I really felt like one…
Easy to use and easy to gift! Take a look at the Charlotte Tilbury counter at Holt Renfrew. Each signature look comes complete in a prepackaged gift box with every product you need inside a charming lip print patterned makeup bag - $275