Yesterday, I had the distinct pleasure of attending the #PGMom Influencer Event at the Four Seasons Hotel in Toronto. Although I missed most of the day due to scheduling conflicts, I was able to breeze in for the last two sessions. And since both centered around beauty (makeup/hair) I was in seventh heaven.
(Disclaimer: I have joined the #PGMom program as a beauty blogger; hence, I will mostly be covering their beauty brands – CoverGirl, Olay, Pantene, Clairol, Herbal Essences, Secret and Head and Shoulders.)
The first session was a trip through the P&G Product Mall, where I had a most wonderful makeup chat with Diana Nguyen, the Communications – Brand PR representative for Proctor & Gamble. We talked about everything from the latest products to how every teenage girl’s first compact is a CoverGirl Clean Pressed Powder compact (I used the blue one – oil control – from grades 10 through 12). I even pulled the CoverGirl Brow & Eyemakers Duo out of my purse – yes, I travel with an eyebrow pencil!
Next, a sit-down session to “Meet the P&G Beauty Experts”. Well, I was more than a little excited to meet Greg Wencel – CoverGirl pro and celebrity makeup artist. Hello! He’s worked with Carrie Underwood, Taylor Swift, Lisa Ray and Katy Perry, to name a few. I secured a seat in the front row, excited to pick up the best tips and tricks.
It wasn’t what I expected.
Of course, he did have wonderful advice to share. After all, he’s a bloody genius! Much respect to him. However, I was slightly turned off by the undertone of his messaging –
We know Moms are busy….
Don’t always have time to put best face forward…
Looking for tips to incorporate into quick makeup routine…
Well, he is correct in a certain respect – Moms ARE busy. And many Moms don’t have the time or desire to apply makeup every day – and frankly, some aren’t even interested in doing so. Fair enough.
But there’s also a large portion of us who MAKE THE TIME. I arrived at the event with a full face of makeup – artfully sculpted brows, winged eyeliner with smoky eyes, a sweep of bronzer highlighting my cheekbones and dewy, shiny lips. Yes, I am busy – and I am short on time. But I will find the time to complete my beauty ritual; it’s just a part of who I am and who I’ll always be. I don’t need quick tips. I don’t have a quick makeup routine.
And you know what? I’m not alone.
The session was full of beautiful bloggers who had varying amounts of makeup, but for the most part, many were comfortable wearing it and it didn’t look like they had rushed out of bed that morning without a lick of time to spare on themselves.
The constant messaging from beauty brands that Moms are too busy – or don’t know how – to care about their appearance is tiresome. It is just as stereotypical as the messaging that select prestige beauty brands employ, depicting mature/ wealthy/ seasoned women wearing their cosmetics.
(Yes, I have purchased $34.00 DiorShow Mascara. No, I don’t have a summer home in the Hamptons.)
In fact, the subtle suggestion that Moms need to be “taught” about using makeup, or need “quick” suggestions, was so unsettling, I just had to say something –
Now you’ll notice that P&G addressed my concerns immediately, with an eagerness and willingness to hear all feedback – good and bad. It’s this kind of attention and transparency that makes brands great. And, my role as a #PGMom for Beauty encompasses more than just gushing about nail polishes and hair masks. So I have the following challenge, not just for CoverGirl, but for all beauty brands:
1) Rethink your marketing to Moms. The main message doesn’t always have to be about “quick fixes” or “how to’s”. Many Moms make it a priority to look their best (whether they incorporate makeup or not), and often, Moms know exactly what they’re doing when it comes to application too. (Remember, we were all once teenagers, bar hoppers, date night attendees and more!)
2) Give us the real lowdown. I don’t need to know where to apply blush – but thanks for the tip. I need to know why cooler tones make me look tired, and why some bronzers apply streaky. Yes, there may be Moms in the room who need more basic advice, but perhaps the brand should consider segmenting us beforehand, so the entire group doesn’t feel like we’re sitting in a session of Makeup for Dummies. When I attend a private event featuring Greg Wencel, I expect it to blow my mind.
3) Think outside the product review. Not that I don’t love reviewing makeup; but I also love writing about trends, celebrity looks, colour palettes and more. One of my all-time favourite campaigns was Lancôme’s creative use of foundation to promote their newest product. I love when beauty brands are inspired to do something a little different to engage bloggers and media. Hosting a VIP event with some of P&G’s experts is a great start – and now, I’m curious to see how the program will evolve.
Stay tuned – over the next few months there’s sure to be a little bit of gushing, a lot of great product advice, and maybe even something truly inspirational.