Last Friday I braved a shopping mall in the school holidays to visit the new Bobbi Brown counter in Farmers Queensgate, in Lower Hutt. Queensgate is somewhere I spent a lot of time, as a teenager growing up in the Hutt, but I generally don’t have reason to return as an adult. I mean, I really like shopping, but I also like natural light and the ability to sit down somewhere that isn’t a food court.
The cosmetics part of Farmers is getting a big re-jig at the moment, with Estee Lauder, Clinique, Bobbi Brown and MAC all opening counters in there this month. I actually really like that MAC is starting to open some counters in Farmers stores, because hopefully the brand will get more accessible to the average New Zealander who doesn’t live in a big city (cost aside). Likewise for Bobbi Brown. And Bobbi Brown is a brand I haven’t actually had much exposure to at all – I didn’t own a single Bobbi Brown product before this – so I was really keen to go check it out.
Bobbi Brown the person is into the vibe of everyone being beautiful, which is positive, and about enhancing that natural beauty with makeup. That means there’s no contouring happening on a Bobbi counter! I had an Ultimate Makeup Lesson with Olivia Wild, BB’s national training manager, who introduced me to a bunch of cult products and the key Bobbi Brown makeup ways of life. Key takeaways are as follows:
- use eye cream, goddamn it (I really took this one to heart and bought the Bobbi Brown Hydrating Eye Cream while I was there)
- use a colour corrector and a concealer under the eyes, before foundation (I am usually too lazy to wear undereye concealer at all)
- Olivia can magically intuit perfect eyebrows (I don’t know how to channel this one at home)
- Bobbi Brown invented gel eyeliner! What the hell! Imagine being like “oh yeah no big deal that was me~” about something so ubiquitous
Here are some of the products Olivia used, including the eye cream at the top. That’s the Brightening Finishing Powder looking luxe as hell at left, and the Sparkle Eyeshadow in Pebble all the way on the right. The shimmer in the eyeshadow is super low key, apparently it is cellophane rather than glitter so it’s not as much of a nightmare as glitter either.
I wanted to try the Intensive Skin Serum foundation because I knew it was new and it looks fancy, but I actually think it was a bit thin for my liking. I was super tired and not feeling fantastic the day I went for the appointment, so I’m trying not to post too many photos of my face. It was one of those days where I felt doughy and haggard and my hair was a disaster so couldn’t take a selfie I was satisfied with, which sucks cos Olivia did an awesome job with my makeup!
So I guess all Bobbi Brown counters do Ultimate Makeup Lessons, but if you book for one at Queensgate before the end of July you get a free mascara, which is pretty dope. They are also free (unless it is at a peak time when they do a $90 booking fee but it is redeemable on product, as always, which I will always recommend, see this for more on that). You can ask to focus on certain things if you feel like you’re capable with one aspect of makeup, but not another.
This was a really nice treat (which I followed with shopping with my mama and a family dinner at Mexico, my favourite place) so if you’re ever in need of a pick-me-up and want to pick up some tips while you’re at it, A++ would recommend. And like, who can be sad about a Bobbi Brown counter where you can also get Farmers Club card points?!
Have you had a makeup lesson at Bobbi Brown? Anywhere else? And what Bobbi products would you recommend I check out next?