Friday, 15 August 2014

The one where I fall in love with Lush

'WHAT DOES IT SMELL LIKE??' the most asked question when I tweeted that I was touring Lush's factories last week.

The answer is 'Actually, very subtle'. Not like the stores at all. The feedback I had when I mentioned Lush swung wildly between stalker-worthy-obsessive fans and 'Ooh GOD that smell I can't bear it.'

I was pretty much on the shelf between the two. I shop in Lush regularly because Ava is a total addict but had never really given their skincare a detailed, clear try until recently. Well, as with Tom Ford, I need to find another hat to eat because I fell a little (a lot) in love with Lush.

I was originally invited to the Poole HQ in order to host a Live UStream with Lush discussing preservatives. The timings were quite late so I stayed over. Knowing what a crazy stalker fan she was, Lush also invited Miss Hirons on the trip.
We had a blast.

The factories are all surrounded with facts about the company.
Literally like Willy Wonka's Factory :)

The team at the Kitchen where we both made products.
My facial tray before we went in.

The original store at 29 High St, Poole.

The Head Office is amazing. 

If you would like to watch the debate it is available here: The Great Preservatives Debate. It was really interesting and the time flew. There is also an unexpected mini-rant about mineral oil around 28:00 - not started by me for a change. :)

It was very refreshing to speak to company owners that walk the walk and frankly, don't BS. And as an aside, I have been in the industry a long time, worked with a lot of people and been to a lot of head offices and factories - the litmus test for me is in the people, not the marketing spiel that brands sometimes front their companies with. I have never, ever seen such happy people as I did during my visit to Poole. The factories, the head office, the shop, the spa, everyone has a genuine love of the company and the job they are doing. So rare and so, so noticeable.

Thank you for having us, it was completely inspiring and our absolute pleasure.

*I was obviously paid to host the UStream event - but this slushy blog post was not part of the deal. Just sharing the love.


  1. What skincare products would reccommend from lush?

  2. I managed to listen to part of the debate, which was truly interesting. And wow, it really looks like Willy Wonka's factory.
    You probably know this, but Ava is soooo cute!!!!

  3. Love this! Love lush! Ava's a lucky girl!!

  4. Lush is by far my favourite place to shop, I always feel right at home with them!

  5. Wow! The colours! It must have been really fantastic there :)
    xx from Germany/Bavaria, Rena

  6. Ha! So good to see that my utter devotion and love for Lush has been validated. From their bath bombs, hair products (even for Women of Colour) and skin moisturisers, they have us covered. Also more important is that they are genuine and great employers which is demonstrated by their employees. I also swear by the statement - happy staff equals happy customers. A great post and really exciting to see what goes on behind the scenes of the great brand.

  7. I'm so in love with lush! So jealous!

  8. Sorry if this has posted twice, I wasn't sure if the first one published.

    Are you planning on taking a close look at their skincare? I'd be interested to know your thoughts. I have sampled a few of their moisturisers (gorgeous, vanishing cream, enzymion) and quite liked them, but I was slightly influenced by your comments which I've read in some of the clinics advising people to skip their Lush and find something else. I know you haven't said the products aren't good per say, but I would be interested to know if you have revised your thoughts. Although I must admit in the case of Gorgeous, if I as going to spend £40 on a moisturiser, it probably wouldn't be at Lush. The others are reasonably priced though. Thanks for your time Caroline!

  9. Sorry if you've mentioned this before, but will you be doing a review on any of your Lush skincare picks?

  10. Even in the states, all of their employees are just so HAPPY. It's crazy. And you can tell, it's not like "zombie happy" because they've been told they have to be but genuinely like where they are happy. It's nuts. Do you have any skincare product suggestions for Lush? I'm always overwhelmed with their skincare options and because I don't know that part of the brand well, I never know where to start. I have dry and dehydrated skin, sensitive (down right hostile really), oily t-zone, flaky dry cheeks, minimal bumps but more so redness from irritation happens easily.

    I use their "Helping Hands" hand cream every night before bed. I'm not ashamed to admit that I touch the top of my own hands frequently now during the day because they're just SO DARN SOFT. Glad to know they can back up their stuff!

  11. Wow sounds like an amazing experience! :-) xx

    Helen | Helens Fashion & Beauty Blog

  12. What a totally interesting interview and look into the world of Lush.

  13. I would also like to know which products you recommend ... I always get overwhelmed when I enter a Lush store and end up buying nothing ! Maybe a soap once... I don't even remember. And it is strange because I've been into their stores several times and love the concept, but I suppose I can't decide what to get...

  14. How much the staff in Lush stores obviously genuinely love their jobs & the company strikes me everytime I visit a store.

    My 7 year old boy loves it in there - if they can make natural products that he enjoys using then they must be getting it right!! The staff are always so patient about him choosing his own & even suggest the more fun bath bombs for him.

    If you havn't tried their Jasmine Hair fluff, may I recommend it? Smells like heaven & leaves my hair so soft

  15. That looks like my idea of heaven! I wish I could cut up bath bombs all day long..

  16. I have to say that I no longer buy anything from Lush despite being an ardent fan of everything in their earlier days. I loved their bath bombs, shampoos, conditioners but my far and away favourite was the cosmetic warrior mask that I still miss. However once they said they would not open a shop in Israel due to the “mixed labour force” I gave up on them. Now I realise a lot of people are not fans of Israel but to refuse to open a shop in Israel whilst operating in Saudi, Qatar, Sri Lanka and Kazakhstan struck me as hypocritical – it seemed they wanted to gain kudos for taking a stand on Israel but still wanted to profit in countries that have truly horrific regimes.

    It makes me sad because I truly loved their products and many of the other causes they stood up for, and if they had said that they would not operate in any country that treated people badly (either for being a woman/gay/the wrong religion etc) then I would still shop there and happily. But because they only picked on one country I had to stop shopping there. Sorry to get political on your blog but Lush proudly wear their own ethics, principles and politics on their sleeve and hence it is not unreasonable to call them out when they are, in my opinion, inconsistent.