Skin-care Sunday: Interview with L’Oreal Paris’ Abi Colgan

Let’s be honest. The first lockdown was hard…to top 2020 off we’ve been dragged through a metaphorical hedge backwards. Don’t worry though guys! We’ve always got you covered, and we won’t let you down now. Carbon got in touch with L’oreal’s Assistant Communications Manager Abigail Colgan to ask her some important must know questions about beauty and how it can better our mental health during such a difficult time.

L’Oreal kindly gifted Carbon On Campus 10 Goodie Bags with a mix of men and women’s products that will be given away to our lucky winners at random. This fits perfectly with #CarbonFeelGoodFestival as self-care is extremely important right now…Abi explains why!

Q: Firstly, what made you want to enter the beauty industry? 

A: The science behind beauty products is so interesting, which is what initially drew me in. Especially with L’Oreal Paris, science is at the heart behind any product launch – there’s so much time and research that goes into a single product launch. In the beauty industry, every year is so different. There are always so many new innovations, so each year is never the same. 

Q: Where did your interest in beauty begin 

A: I started out working in Fashion studying International Fashion Marketing BSc (Hons) at Manchester Metropolitan University. I did a placement year in the Press Office at River Island. Then when I finished university, I went to ASOS where I dipped a little into beauty PR. During this time, I saw a change in the beauty landscape when brands such as Glossier launched, which made the market so exciting and gave the longstanding brands a bigger challenge. This had a lot to do with the evolution of social media and the power of the consumer voice, which has such an effect in the beauty market now.  

Q: What is your go-to everyday product? 

A: SPF – It’s so important to protect your skin from UV rays, even in the winter when many think that due to the lack of sun that it may not be. I never go without wearing it and I’ve really seen a difference in my skin too! Garnier Ambre Solair Face Fluid SPF 50 is perfect – lightweight and doesn’t go chalky or have a white finish. After this, hyaluronic acid – you can’t go wrong without an extra hit of hydration! 

Q: What does your ideal lockdown pamper night look like? 

A: Firstly, cleaning. You must get rid of the SPF! I love Cerave hydrating cleanser, which gets rid of pollution, SPF and everything else that has been sat on your face all day. If I’ve been wearing makeup, I’ll use some micellar water after cleansing. Then, I add a niacinamide serum which reduces redness along with my trusty L’Oreal Paris Hyaluronic Acid Serum (I may be biased, but it really is the best!) It’s not sticky, lightweight and sinks in super-fast. Then Azelaic Acid and a moisturiser with extra niacinamide in there. If I’m doing a proper pamper sesh I would finish it off with a sheet mask to lock in the hydration – another L’Oreal Paris fave is the Hyaluronic Acid sheet mask. 

Q: What is L’Oreal’s main goal when it comes to people using your products? 

A: For our consumers to feel their most confident selves. L’Oreal Paris is all about empowering yourself, so if consumers have this feeling after using our products, that’s the ultimate win. 

Q: Do you think that beauty products and pampering impact our mental health? 

A: They give us confidence – and it doesn’t have to just be makeup that does that. I’m not the only one who feels amazing when I’m having a good hair or skin day. Taking time for yourself, now more than ever, is also so important. Especially with technology so readily available, it makes it hard to disconnect but I think pampering yourself whilst diving into a good book does the trick. 

Q: Do you think that beauty and skincare, along with self-love is more important during these sad and concerning times? 

A: It’s not the most important, but I think that people taking time for themselves and looking after their mental health id important. Whether you get this feeling of self-love from taking a walk, calling a loved one or doing a sheet mask in bed, as long as you’re looking after yourself, that’s what is most important.  

Q: Finally, where did the L’Oreal “because you’re worth it” come from? 

A: The slogan was written by a 23-year-old female copy writer named Illon Specht in 1973 who worked for our advertising agency in New York, who we still work with today. We’ve used it ever since. It was written in a time where women were flooding the streets of New York, quite rightly, demanding equal rights for women. She said, “because I’m worth it’ makes it about me and my choices and myself”, which I’ve always found so empowering. It’s such an interesting story because it really shows how the story of ‘self-worth’ is threaded through everything L’Oreal Paris does. 

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