Ask any stylish girl with an Instagram account who she follows for both fashion and beauty inspiration, and her first answer will be Lucy Williams of Fashion Me Now. From the jewellery pieces we always want to pick up from her Missoma collection to finding out exactly which highlighter she’s using to get that glow, the London-based super-influencer has become a trusted source for our wardrobes and our beauty kits over the years with her alluring effortlessness—a look so many want to achieve, and can perhaps now do so because she’s here rattling off the cult brands she loves. Keep reading to see the beauty labels Lucy’s getting behind this year.
As a self-confessed beauty nerd, there’s nothing I love more than discovering a new brand while on my travels. Just like when you’re a teenager and discover a super-cool band before anyone else, there’s something satisfying about discovering a new wonder product or beautiful brand and getting to tell your friends all about it. These are a few of the brands I’m currently crushing on after discovering them either at home or on my travels…
I’m obsessed with this brand that’s quickly becoming a household name. The first thing that got me hooked was the really clever, non-fiddly packaging (totally devoid of tiny screw lids or faulty pump systems). I love that this brand takes skincare seriously (no essential oils, drying alcohols, silicones, chemical screens, fragrance/dyes and SLS) but is delivered in a really upbeat, light-hearted way. But we all know looks aren’t everything, and luckily the contents of said packaging are great too. I’m hooked on their C-Firma (vitamin C) Day Serum (£67) and the Lala Retro Whipped Cream (£50). The Lippe Balm (£15) is also amazing for sorting out my dry, eczema-ridden thumbs.
J. HANNAH NAIL POLISH
I’m not much of a nail varnish wearer, in truth, so it takes a really great nail colour to tempt me to paint my toes. Enter J. Hannah, a jewellery designer who also produces nontoxic nail polishes in the best colours. I discovered this brand in L.A. (in my favourite store, LCD in Venice), and every time I pop in or go past, I can’t resist buying a couple shades. Never shiny or glittery, and in just the kind of colours you want to wear; think soft corals, warm neutrals and generally the kind of palette you’d want your household linens in.
Sister & Co Skin Food
Unlike the rest of Instagram, I’m not a huge coconut oil lover in terms of food, but I do love the stuff for feeding my hair and skin when it really needs it. Sister & Co is a lovely independent UK brand that makes the loveliest scrubs, oils and coconut-based products for hair, body and face. It goes without saying they smell amazing and it feels really nice to use something natural and nourishing like this. They do lovely natural baby products, too, which make great presents. I love the Almond Milk Bath Soak (£23) and the Cacao and Coffee Scrub (£24)—so great to leave you feeling completely scale-free and baby-soft before a holiday or big event.
I can’t get enough of this Austrian brand. I was treated to a facial at its pop-up in Liberty recently, too, and the treatment really left me glowing (which is saying something in middle of winter). The Moisturising Mask (£41) saved my skin on a recent two-day work trip to Australia and back—I just put it on in-flight and never took it off. In fact, the whole mini set of flight essentials is a dream for surviving long-haul travel (the only thing that really makes me break out in a a big way). The cooling Leg Spray (£23) in particular is a nice product I just haven’t found anywhere else.
My friend Lauren, who co-founded the brand Asceno, introduced me to the this natural British skincare brand. The natural oils are hand blended in small batches, and I feel like you can tell. The Midnight Oil (£41) and Forever Young Oil (£51) are two of my favourites to apply last thing at night, and the creamy Angel Balm Cleanser (£55) is the kind of product that will totally change how you skin deals with harsh winter temperatures.
Expensive definitely doesn’t mean good in my book, but Vintner’s Daughter serum 100% meets the demands its hefty price tag sets. This oil-like serum is beyond amazing, and I really notice the difference in my skin when using it. Packed full of antioxidants, nourishing nutrients and high-grade botanical oils, it smells insanely good, and a little goes a long way, so you don’t have to burn through your beauty investment too quickly.
Another L.A. discovery, I found Alexis Smart flower remedies in CAP Beauty, one of my favourite places to discover new natural brands. I haven’t used flower or herbal tinctures since Bach flower remedies in my teens for insomnia and rescue remedy for exams, the latter of which I’ve since had completely debunked to me by many an expert. However, Alexis Smart flower remedies came highly recommended, and I was intrigued by the issues they intend to help with—it’s a really nice addition to your self-care routine. Both Alexis herself and friends told me to use it religiously for a while in order to see results rather than just trying for a week and giving up, so that’s worth remembering if you give them a go.
Lola James Harper
This French candle and fragrance brand just has an all-round lovely feel to it. The scents are unique and interesting (no sickly rose-based scents round here), and each one is named after a place of significance or somewhere the brand loves, like The Music Studio and The Surf Shop. The brand has a real rock ’n’ roll feel with an emphasis on music, travel and photography (it sells beautiful prints as well a fragrances for you and your home). Just a lovely brand I’ll always buy into again and again.
Salt of the Earth
I picked up this natural deodorant in my local supermarket recently after my mum dismissed my regular deodorant choice as being really bad for me. Truth be told, I’d never really thought about it that much before; I just want a roll-on that guarantees I stay fresh. I didn’t have high hopes for this deodorant, but it really delivered. You have to wet the salt under the tap and apply wet; then dry off the salt stick to make it last longer. It sounds fussy, but it really isn’t, and the great thing is that it actually really works. So much so, I don’t think I’ll ever use anything else now. It does a spray version, too, but I actually think the stick is much more effective.
I’d be lying if I said the packaging wasn’t what first attracted me to this brand (I love the whimsical bright blue bottles that look like magic potions), but it turns out I love what’s inside too. Made from natural, sustainable ingredients, I reach for the Moonlight Catalyst regularly to go on before my night oil or cream. Another brand that really focuses on ethical and eco-friendly ingredients and practises without comprising on great, hard-working products.
I love discovering a new haircare brand (I’ll try anything to look after my often dry, bleached locks), and I recently found this on Cult Beauty. Made using human keratin, the products promise strengthening, reparative results and are amazing for rebuilding weakened, damaged hair that’s seen too much colour, sun or central heating. Plus it does most products in small travel sizes, so they’re great for trips too.
Poppy and Someday
Another Californian discovery, these beautiful, natural products are all handmade in Laurel Canyon. Complete with apothecary-style packaging and products ranging from delicate face mists and body oils to ceramics, tinctures and medicinal teas, it’s such a lovely brand—just looking at its website makes me feel peaceful and zen. I love the face mists and oils, but every time I see the products in L.A.’s The General Store, I have to resist buying everything.
An Instagrammable favourite, these sparkly, shooting star-shaped, collagen eye patches look great on while doing good. Pretty enough to wear without embarrassment on the plane, too, these are a real treat before a big event or to ward off dark circles while simultaneously making for a great selfie. Win-win! And yes, they actually work too.
It’s always nice feeling like you’re doing a tiny bit of good while buying something you like. Enter: Marie-Stella-Maris, a beautiful skincare brand that with every purchase makes a donation to a clean drinking project around the world, working towards achieving clean water for everyone. I love the protecting hand cream and the fact the brand also sells its own mineral water (in glass bottles—don’t worry).