Forget Mary. There’s something about Kate. With her flawless makeup and glossy chestnut mane, the Duchess of Cambridge is single handedly breathing new life into the stuffy blue rinse and pearls monarch-aesthetic and inspiring women worldwide in the process.
Every time she steps out in a tailored wool LK Bennett coat or demure Issa dress, cash registers around the UK go ‘ping’ as women line up, hoping to be sprinkled with a little Middleton magic dust.
The Duchess effect, as it’s become known, is believed to be worth about $2 billion to the British fashion industry, and it has trickled into the beauty sector, as well. Kate, who is the epitome of good grooming, is the perfect cosmetics poster-girl and has been spotted on a number of ocassions buying (she shops?!) products at Lancôme counters in both Harrods and Peter Jones department stores in London. This has caught some media attention, leading to her becoming an unofficial Lancôme ambassador. It’s a major coup for the brand – and one that didn’t cost them a cent. We've pulled together some Lancôme favourites to help you channel a little Middleton.
When the brand launched Visionnaire, in 2011, they made sure they sent some to Kate and her sister Pippa to try. A UK tabloid reported the news and once again, the Duchess Effect kicked into overdrive. Papers in Australia picked up the story and it sparked a riot in department stores here, too. The lightweight serum was touted to be a cure all for skin tone and texture – eradicating fine lines, redness and shrinking pores and the eye catching azure bottles became seriously hot property overnight.
“It was crazy,” recalls Lancôme makeup artist Lara Srokowski, who worked the floor in Myer Sydney that day. “In the first day we literally ran out of the product,” she says, adding that women were queuing up and buying several at a time to ensure that they too could have a royal glow. Lancôme had to start a waitlist to come up with the demand. And it was no one-hit-wonder. Once women tried the product, they were hooked.
“We have a database of customers who purchase the product again and again,” says Lara.
Now, three years later, the brand is launching a new, more potent version of Visionnaire and they are expecting similar hysteria.
“We already have a waitlist,” confirms the brand’s Communications Manager, Christine Burke. “We wanted to ensure the loyal fans of Visionnaire didn’t miss out.”
The new Visionnaire LR2412 4% Cx Advanced Skin Corrector, contains an even more potent version of the original active ingredient - LR2412 - the breakthrough molecule that has been the focus of 18 peer-reviewed scientific studies and has won 100 awards since it appeared in the original formula. The University of Manchester did a blind study and found the LR2412 to be as effective as retinoic acid at evening out skin texture - but without the sensitive side effects. The new serum also contains a complex that boosts the skin’s ability to produce the super-hydrating hyaluronic acid, making the new serum a double-threat when it comes to fighting dehydration and aging.
We love that the new Visionnaire serum joins a suite of other skin perfecting innovations in the range, including the Visionnaire Correcting Polishing Cream (and its own little “polishing pad” to really buff rough skin), a One Minute Blur Cream that works like Photoshop on imperfections and Advanced Eye Contour Perfecting Corrector that uses a unique bendy rubber applicator tip to massage the eye area, decreasing puffiness and dark circles.
The thing we love most? That it works just as well for royalty as for mere mortals like us. Because, when it comes to beauty, we want what Kate’s having.