BeautyCon London was the weirdest day ever! Okay, well maybe not ever, bit of an exaggeration, but definitely the weirdest day of my week. I got invited along by Priv – the popular on-demand Beauty & Wellness App. The doors opened at 10am, but I had a crazy morning, involving sleeping in and skipping breakfast, and so I didn’t get there till 12.45. I then arrived to find I’d forgotten to put my memory card in my camera, so couldn’t vlog or take any decent photos. Not a great start to the day.
I was expecting something similar to the Clothes Show; a huge space, hundreds of stalls and brands, a large stage area, samples being given out left, right and centre. But I was surprised to find it was on a much smaller scale than that. It was held at Kensington Olympia, but in a warehouse-type part of the building. It was nicely decorated with bright lights and big pink Beautycon balloons everywhere, but you could easily walk the room in 60 seconds and there weren’t nearly as many brands/pop-ups there as I had anticipated.
The whole left side of the room was built up as a queuing system for people to line up and meet YouTubers. I knew there would be Beauty Bloggers and Vloggers there doing the scheduled talks and Q&A’s, but I wasn’t aware of the meet & greets. To be honest I didn’t realise that BeautyCon was going to be so heavily focused on US Vlogger Meet & Greets. Quite a few famous YouTubers, non of whom I’m familiar with (probably too old, sigh) were flown over from America for these meet & greets. Maybe it’s because I’m 29 and the only thing I can handle queuing for now is food, but the whole meet and greet thing did not appeal to me. I watched on as young girls, some of whom will have paid £95 to get queue jump, wait in line to the meet their YouTube heroes for just 20 seconds! It was the most bizarre thing to watch. I’m a huge fan of Louise of SprinkleofGlitter, but I can completely understand why she stopped doing meet and greets and instead started ‘Louise Live’ – a live show and Q&A – beause she felt it was unfair for fans to queue for so long to then get less than a minute of her time.
I did however, very much enjoy the talk about ‘Beauty: Inside and Out’. Various UK & American vloggers were on the panel, including Lilly Pebbles and Essie Button, both of whom I follow. And I thought it was such a nice topic, talking about what makes them feel good, from the latest MAC product to cuddles with their dogs or dinner-dates with their family.
Aside from the talks/Q&A’s and the meet & greets, there was a few different brands with pop ups stalls/sets, most of which were disappointing. Liz Earle had a whole system going where you had to post a picture of their sign, tweet their handle, then show the Liz Earle staff the tweet to get a free product. Sounds easy but to show the staff you’ve tweeted you had to stand in a 20 minute queue … which I decided to avoid. THANK THE LORD for Priv and Benefit, the only two pop-ups worth visiting (bar the amazing the hot dog stand, nom) …
The Benefit Roller Lash bar was stunning. It was a raised platform, set up like a bar with tall stools and tables, with benefit make up everywhere. All pink and cute, Benefit were offering Pink Lemonade to all who got to go inside and have a treatment. For £17 I got my eyebrows tinted and shaped/waxed PLUS a free Gimme Brow product (usually £18.50). The best part was that all the profits from the Roller Lash Bar went to the Bold is Beautiful charity which I thought was fantastic.
At the whole of BeautyCon, Priv were the only brand at to offer completely FREE treatments! To promote their on-demand Beauty & Wellness app, which lets you order a beauty service to your home (imagine a takeaway app but instead of ordering a greasy Chinese you order massages, manicures and blow drys, download now!) Priv decided to offer free manicures, a free makeover, or a free hair-do, including hair tonging and hair chalking. They also had a whole area set up for chilling out with popcorn and sweets. And for when you had your finished look, they had a Priv photo booth. They set me up with a make-up artist from Urban Decay who gave me a smokey eye look for a party I was headed to after BeautyCon. With my Priv eye-makeup and Benefit brows here was my final BeautyCon look (lips/face done by me):
I love make-up and cosmetics, and I enjoy beauty blogging, but I’m not sure I was the target market for this event. If you aren’t going to queue up to meet a YouTuber, it’s not really worth it. I was hoping for something bigger and better. It was the first one in London, so maybe next time it will be on a larger scale. Despite my dissapointment, I have to say I really enjoyed being pampered by Priv and was hugely impressed with the Benefits Roller Lash bar, if all the brands had done something similar I think it would have been a much better event.
Did you go to BeautyCon London?? What did you think? Love it? Hate it? I’d love to know in the comments below…