So I went to IMATS this weekend on both Friday afternoon and Saturday morning. I haven't been for around 5/6 years so I wanted to go on the makeup artist pro day to see my makeup artist pals (MUA's seem to avoid IMATS like the plague on the weekend) and then I wanted to catch up with some bloggers on the Saturday.
The plan was to shop on the Friday, as it's a LOT less hectic and then just network and catch up with people on the Saturday but that combination really didn't happen. As soon as I got into Olympia on the Friday afternoon, I just started having a good catch-up with the group of makeup artists I met up with. From there I saw, what it felt like, hundreds of people I know... an exaggeration; maybe like 20, but it's such a small industry and I knew people attending and lots of the people working for brands etc who I have met over the years. I did ZERO shopping (except the amazing NARS duo, which I will tell you about in a minute), just non-stop chatting, gassing and coo-ing over makeup. In hindsight this was stupid as Saturday turns out to be SO MUCH more hectic.
I arrived at around 10am on Saturday AM after a lovely Balans brekkie with Zoe, and starting doing the rounds of the various stands trying to work out what/if I needed anything and also what bargains I may have missed out on the day before. I did find most things I was after, although some q's (more than 10 ppl deep) were just not an option for me. I cannot be arsed with q's. Speaking of which , WHAT was going on at NYX? Were they giving out a bar of solid gold along with purchase? The q's here were constant, astonishing and quite frankly ridiculous. Don't get me wrong, I use quite a bit of the stuff and it's good, but this is and has been available in the UK for ages, plus it's not pricey, so I have no idea why the commotion on that stand. I heard that people were q'ing for over ONE HOUR to just get onto the stand. Come on now.
I got to see the amazing Pablo R from Mac doing his 4 editorial /fashion looks on the mainstage which was great, this is the makeup that I find exciting and it's what I do so I really enjoyed watching him and his techniques. This guy works on some of the biggest fashion shows all over the world and I simply love his relaxed,unassuming and unpretentious nature - he's so just super cool. Zoe from Crownbrush was doing a bodypainting demo which was really good and I kept on checking back to see her creation coming to life. Walking around the stands, most had some kind of makeup / bodypainting going on live so you constantly have things to do and see. I met up with a load of bloggers including Jade, Kat, Sheenie, Vanessa, Gemma, and Sophia which was really nice to have a catch up and a quick gaggle over our different purchases and talk recommendations.
It's been a long break for me since my last IMATS and I used to be a bit *eurggggggh no way* about it, but I will 100% go back next year, maybe just on the Friday for pro day as it's a little more chilled, and I get first dibs on the NARS BARGAINS!
My IMATS shopping:
The biggest bargain of IMATS had to be on NARS. Like ridiculous. So if you ever go in the future, head there first and early. I know a lot of the sets already had gone on Friday afternoon this year. Up to like 70% off some items.
NARS Body Glow I & II
I have both of this for my kit (natch) and they are pure luxury and lovely. They are not cheap at £48 (ish) each so I only use it for my special clients and use sparingly. On the Friday, I fortunately spotted a friend of mine who was working on the NARS stand as I was just explaining to her that I wasn't getting any bits she showed me the two oils in a set......for £15. WTF. At £50 these two would have been a bargain. I grabbed a couple of boxes and pretty much hollered across the hall for my makeup girls to come and get involved, we ended up buying maybe 10 boxes between us. Could. Not. Believe. My. Luck.
Hakuhodo makeup brushes
These are a makeup artist's secret. I have heard about these brushes for a while now and they only come to London once a year, where makeup artists go a little nuts to stock up. I DO NOT NEED ANY MAKEUP BRUSHES. I kept telling this to myself, but after a look and a feel, I could not pull myself away. I only got two, which were small tapered ones made from Goat Hair. One is for the eye and blending and the other is a small face brush which I will use for powdering and contour - very similar to the Charlotte Tilbury contour brush.
Nigels' Beauty Emporium: Eyelashes
They were doing a bundle of any 7 unboxed eyelashes for £10. These are 1000% unboxed Ardell's as I have used the demi-wipsy's for like 100years now, so I got a bunch for my kit. These are such beautiful, natural and fluttery fake lashes with an invisible band so if applied well you cannot even see that you have them on.
Love Makeup Stand : Daniel Sandler & Limecrime
This was one of my favourite makeup stands as it had a great selection of smaller / niche brands and I spent ages having a look around. I didn't really need either of these items but just wanted to try them out and review them really : The Lime Crime Velvetine in 'Red Velvet' and also I picked up the Daniel Sandler Watercolour fluid blusher. I haven't ever used blusher like this as it's really fluid (like an airbrush one) but will let you know how I get on. This shade is 'cherub', no idea what is popular within his range but this to me was a lovely dusky pink. PS I didn't catch your name but hello to the lovely girl who was working on the stand who recognised me and said she loved my blog *blushing* and it's always lovely to hear.
Not on my hitlist what-so-ever but some bright hair-dye caught my eye, and as you may know I have recently gone peachy/pink so I purchased a 'Baby Pink' hair colour to see how they are in comparison to the 'Crazy Colou'r ones I am using at the moment. I also got x3 neon kohl pencils in shades 26,27 & 28, how about that and I just chose at random. These are just cool bright shades for my kit.
My last port of call and I struck whilst it wasn't too busy (was pretty crazy here at all times) They had a huge stand which was great and I think they had all the brushes double up over the different sides so you could see them all without being barged out of the way. I picked up a bunch of different brushes for myself and a few for the kit, and also a metal mixing tray and spatula for my kit which I have needed like forever! Crownbrushes are a bargain anyway and the prices are just so good - I think my favourite range could be the Luna range as these are the brushes that I have had for over 8 years now! I replaced some of my beloved ones as I know they will last really well and they are great quality and super soft on the skin. I also picked up a couple of boxes of their new lashes and also their gorgeous Illuminating foundation in a pale shader than what I have as it's quite dark. (check my review here)
I felt absolutely exhausted when I left IMATS, it's just a crazy flurry of makeup excitement, finding your hitlist brands, getting distracted by every other thing, bumping into industry peeps and talking. Undeniably a destination for makeup artists, beauty bloggers and enthusiasts alike. Even if you live miles away, its' something you should think about for next year, make a trip of it and even stay the night so you can get there early and stay late and socialise. Did you you go IMATS??