When I launched Look Fabulous Forever around nine years ago, I knew that I wanted more than a makeup brand for older women. Amongst the various ideas swirling around my head as I tested potential products and thought about colours and the design of packaging, I knew that I also wanted to disrupt the shibboleths of the beauty industry. Keats may have believed that ‘Truth is Beauty’, but the beauty industry had long corrupted this into ‘Youth is Beauty’.
By which I mean that all notions of beauty were the exclusive prerogative of those who possessed the perfect, unlined and unblemished skin of an (often very) young face.
My approach was going to be completely different. The big beauty companies never showed their makeup on older faces and still don’t. Beautiful film stars like Helen Mirren and Jane Fonda are almost exclusively used by L’Oreal to promote their ‘anti-ageing’ skincare. This is subtly undermining because the message is clear: It’s only ok to age as long as you’re doing everything in your power to look as young as possible by using these lotions and potions. As the 65 year old that I was when I came up with the idea for LFF, I found such messages and their accompanying images insulting. I was fine with my age. I felt happier and more fulfilled than I had ever been. My life was full and busy. And I also loved makeup and wanted that makeup to flatter and enhance my older face, not to turn back the clock.
My primary focus was on the way that our products were formulated. I knew that LFF makeup had to be qualitatively different from all other brands who cared only that their makeup worked on really smooth, really young skin. Having achieved that qualitative difference with our initial range, I then vowed that LFF as a business would celebrate rather than denigrate ageing. How? By consistently choosing REAL older women to promote our products in all our video tutorials and for all the photographs that we use to promote what we sell. I started with my closest friends. Our first photo shoot was a joyous affair pre-launch in a studio in London with a professional makeup artist and photographer. The women were transformed. The makeup looked wonderful and I began to be quietly excited (if that isn’t an oxymoron!).
Two brave friends, Carol, whom I’d known since we were teenagers and Anne, a mum at Suzy’s playschool I’d befriended thirty years previously, volunteered to be videoed to show how each product needed to be applied. These two videos, loaded onto YouTube were the spark that lit the business flame. Initially I was both pessimistic and dismissive that two video makeup tutorials from a new brand fronted by a non-celeb (me) and an unknown makeup artist (Linda Sullivan) would drop like a stone into a black hole on YouTube and get, at very best, maybe a hundred views. If I tell you that the Eye and Lip Makeup video with Carol has been watched by 2.5 million women, then you’ll understand just how wrong I was.
Over the past nine years the offering that we make to our customers has expanded to include many more wonderful products requested by you, including a skincare and haircare range, but our philosophy stays the same: We only use REAL older women to promote all our products and preferably those who eschew any form of invasive cosmetic procedures. Which is where you come in. Yes. I mean you! If you love Look Fabulous Forever products, we are currently looking for some new Ambassadors to become ‘Faces of LFF’. This is an initiative we launched last year and it has proved so successful that we have decided to initiate a new search this autumn. Before you decide to apply, why not read what some of our current Ambassadors have told me about their experience of becoming a Face of LFF?
“I love makeup and jumped at the opportunity to work with a makeup company focussed on mature women. I couldn't believe it when they chose me - I was absolutely elated. Being an Ambassador has given me so much confidence. I never really liked having my photograph taken and yet I have even shared pictures of me first thing in the morning without makeup! There’s nothing about this role that I don’t like. I enjoy creating social posts for Facebook on my phone which have got easier with practice. To anyone thinking of applying I’d say “If you are prepared to commit to the role go for it”.
“I considered it to be a privilege to be chosen and was therefore over the moon and honoured to become an LFF Ambassador. The best thing is making a contribution, however small, to promote a brand that I’m passionate about and also being part of the Tricia’s ST community. I find creating posts and videos easy and great fun. So be bold and apply! You have nothing to lose.”
“I’d been using Look Fabulous Forever products and was really impressed with the quality and the excellent customer service. I applied to become an Ambassador because I was excited about the prospect of being among the first to try new products and of course the opportunity for free LFF products was very tempting! I was amazed to be chosen! Mostly because there are so many far more stylish and beautiful ladies in the Facebook group.
I’ll be honest and admit that creating social media posts and videos definitely pushes me outside my comfort zone. I’m not a very confident person and so this is not something I find particularly easy. Having said that, the really lovely positive comments from other Super Troopers and Look Fabulous Forever HQ make it all worthwhile. One of the great things about Look Fabulous Forever is that they showcase their products on real women not models. I’ve never been very confident about my looks and would never have imagined I might be picked as an ambassador for a makeup and skincare company, but I’m so glad that I took the plunge and applied to be a LFF ambassador”.
“I’d loved and used the LFF products for some time – the textures and colours really suited my ageing skin and I wanted to promote them to others. When I knew I had been chosen as an Ambassador, I was excited to be doing something totally new. Also, I was going through a difficult and emotional time caring for my sick partner and being an Ambassador was such a different and fun side to my life. I now love showcasing the products. The part I find most difficult is anything to do with the eye make-up as I have very sensitive eyes and also showing my hands as they are not attractive!! I find doing the photos fairly easy but the videos are hard to get the lighting right and the whole process is quite complicated for me! I’d encourage anyone thinking of applying to definitely go for it. It has been the most amazing fun and the support from Tricia and the whole LFF team and the other ST’s has been fantastic. You will learn so much about the products and how to apply them”.
“Applying was a bit of a last minute impulse decision for me! I just thought it would be a fun thing to be. I love and use LFF makeup every day, so I thought that I could be a genuine ambassador. When I found out that I’d been chosen, I felt surprised, delighted and flattered. I really like trying out the new products. There’s nothing I dislike about being an LFF Ambassador, although getting a good photo can sometimes take a while. However, It does get better with practice. If you are tempted to apply I’d encourage you to have a go. The LFF team are all lovely and understanding. It really doesn’t take up too much of your time. It’s fun to try new products and it was great to meet Tricia and the team when we all got together”.
“I loved the items in the LFF range and was also really enjoying being part of Tricia's Super Troopers but when I had the encouragement of some lovely members, I decided to take the plunge and submit my entry. I remember having a quick glance at my phone during a Spanish lesson and I honestly was absolutely amazed and delighted to have been selected. I feel privileged to represent such a wonderful group of ladies and to help promote the products and ethos of Look Fabulous Forever. Taking selfies and videos to demonstrate the product on a real older face is such a good idea and does get easier with practice so I would encourage anyone who is thinking of applying to go for it. You will not regret it I promise you."
If these Ambassador stories have inspired you then watch the video below for all you need to know in order to apply. We are not looking for a particular ‘type’ because older women come in all shapes and sizes, nor do we have any requirements around haircut, colour or style. If you are successful you will be helping to fulfil the promise I made both to myself and all our customers, namely that we would always authentically represent real older faces. From day one, Look Fabulous Forever has been so much more than just a beauty brand. You can help us to fulfil our stated mission “to empower a generation of women to look, feel and live fabulously forever.”
Look Fabulous Forever do not own all of the images used in this blog. Please note that all images and copyrights belong to their original owners. No copyright infringement intended.
Upcoming Event Information:
Monday 3rd October
Monday 3rd October
Makeup Magic: Transitioning Into Autumn
With light shifting and the temperature on the turn, Sally and Tricia suggest easy makeup and skincare changes to keep you looking your best into the autumn months
Day: Monday 3rd October
Meeting ID (if needed): 835 6169 4963
Password (if needed): LOOKFAB
Friday 14th October
Monday 3rd October
Film Club: Belfast
Available on Amazon Prime and Curzon Home Cinema
Watch the film before the event and then join us for a discussion!
Day: Friday 14th October
Meeting ID (if needed): 861 0928 8705
Password (if needed): LOOKFAB