British Beauty Week kicks off today with events taking place from 26-31 October to shine a light on the UK’s £25bn beauty industry and the brands within it.
In this interview with TheIndustry.beauty, British Beauty Council CEO Millie Kendall OBE and British Beauty Week ambassador David Walker-Smith tell us all about this year’s celebration, its highlights and what they hope it will achieve.
British Beauty Week brings together brands, consumers, press and policymakers to highlight the impact of British beauty brands in the UK and abroad through a range of in-person and digital events.
The aim is to strengthen the UK beauty industry’s reputation with businesses and government, while encouraging growth and awareness among consumers. “We really want people to celebrate and recognize the benefits of the industry, its workforce, its products, its innovation and its businesses,” says Kendall.
Walker-Smith adds: “The aim is to celebrate British beauty around the world and support business growth and innovation.”
This year’s celebration will focus on “The Power of Beauty” to engage the industry across three key themes: talent, growth and ESG.
“We represent these pillars through events throughout the week, with many of our patrons and partners providing content that truly showcases these themes,” highlights Kendall.
To help set the strategy for British Beauty Week 2023, the British Beauty Council appointed former Selfridges Executive Beauty Director and Fenwick Managing Director Walker-Smith as its first ambassador earlier this year.
“I’ve always wanted to work with Millie and I was delighted to be offered it. We worked with the British Beauty Council team on the Power of Beauty, the overall concept of British Beauty Week, which both strengthens the foundation of the council and attracts brands, surprises and delights customers. I loved it and learned a lot, and I hope to be around next year,” says Walker-Smith.
“It’s great to have a British Beauty Week ambassador this year, David has made the whole event so much more inclusive and thinks like a retailer which I really love,” adds Kendall.
British Beauty Week 2023 kicks off with the Wellcome Collection launching a new exhibition called ‘The Cult of Beauty’. The showcase features more than 200 works, including historical objects, artworks, films and new commissions. It considers the influence of morality, status, health, age, race and gender on the evolution of ideas about beauty.
The exhibition is open and free to the public from today, 26 October 2023, and will run until 28 April 2024, after British Beauty Week.
Other physical activities will focus primarily on London’s West End and surrounding areas, with ‘Beauty Night’ taking place this evening from 5pm to 8pm.
This event will feature a spectacular array of beauty experiences, masterclasses, demonstrations and one-off events from companies including MAC Cosmetics, Kiehl’s, Too Faced, Aesop, Neal’s Yard Remedies, Benefit Cosmetics and Boots.
“Our brand participation this year is amazing. I’m especially excited to see some of the Beauty Night events,” Kendall enthused. “Beauty Night Out will be celebrated with late-night shopping events at a range of retailers across the country, as well as focusing on Covent Garden in London for a true experience among beauty brands and retailers across the region.”
British Beauty Week has also opened a Trade Center in Covent Garden, supported by Space NK, hosting a series of free panel discussions with a range of industries around key topics such as sustainability, diversity, aesthetic licensing and the importance of responsible content creation. speakers.
Another element of the week is events around the UK’s biggest beauty brands, with exclusive content profiling the unique people working in their businesses, engaging with young people to offer mentoring opportunities. This includes the chance to spend time with celebrity make-up artist and British Beauty Council ambassador Bobbi Brown in a webinar designed to reveal her journey to beauty mogul.
“The Unboxing British Beauty concept aims to give students and young people the chance to access behind-the-scenes content from those working in the industry, while the panel talks are designed to truly inspire the industry to be better and do better,” Kendall concludes.