I must admit that it’s taken a great deal of thought to conclude on who my ‘beauty icon’ is. For a long time, I clung onto trends as my makeup inspiration (hello Instagram brows!), but as I’ve gotten older, I’ve adopted the ‘less-is-more’ approach.
So, I thought I’d start with that, then like an epiphany from above, it dawned on me. Whose counter do I gravitate towards when I’m shopping? Whose videos do I watch religiously? Whose “darling” did I at first ironically adopt, but has now become a standard feature of my lexicon? No other than the fabulous Charlotte Tilbury.
If you don’t see me wandering around the office or campus without makeup on looking dead to the world because of deadlines, you’ll very likely see me sporting a hybrid of the soft glam and soft girl makeup look (without the drawn-on hearts; I’m a 22 year old media student, not a 16 year old Tik Tok star!). But it’s the peachy pinks and soft orange tones that have me flocking to Boots with every new launch; debit card clutched in my hand reluctantly as I buy my ten millionth nude lipstick. I’m somewhat of a magpie when it comes to makeup; is it glittery? Pink? If the answer is yes, I’ll probably want it; I’m a shameless advertiser’s dream.
But humour aside, it’s Charlotte Tilbury who revolutionised that ‘look’. With her emphasis on natural and soft makeup, rather than heavy and caked, her signature looks are timeless and can be worn by anyone regardless of skin-tone or face shape. I struggle to get excited by many launches these days but Tilbury is my one exception; I can always rely on her to release makeup that the average person can wear, not just the beauty gurus and supermodels. It’s because of this that she’s such an icon to me; as many brands forget the average makeup wearer, Tilbury forgoes the ‘trends’ and sticks to making makeup that accentuates natural beauty.
Her line aside, Tilbury is an incredible makeup artist and has the awards and honours to prove it. Having worked with every major magazine and celebrity in the fashion and beauty world, and received an MBE for her contribution to makeup, she’s garnered herself a bit of a reputation of being a go-to artist. But her skills in makeup and business aren’t the only admirable achievements of Tilbury. Throughout her career, she and her brand have supported many charitable causes that empower women around the world. In 2019, Tilbury’s brand donated £1 million to the charity Women for Women; one of the largest corporate donations to the charity. Tilbury’s message has always been about putting women at the forefront of movements and change, and weaponizing makeup as a tool for empowerment for women in a world where it’s seen as fickle and vain.
I joke, but Tilbury’s influence goes beyond a beautiful lipstick. If you’ve got the spare pennies, I strongly recommend trying out her brand.
Last modified: 27th February 2020