Indie Beauty Expo London 2019: the good, the great and the best

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I go to quite a few launch events, beauty talks and trade shows, but the one I’ve been looking forward to this whole year was Indie Beauty Expo in London. The Truman Brewery might not be the most inviting hall generally, but the organisers and exhibitors always turn it into my dreamland location. And since there was no access to the general public this year, I made it my mission to come back here with the most exciting findings. I had so many interesting conversation with fascinating people from the coolest brands around the world, and below you will find some of my absolute favourites. To be followed soon by posts on product highlights that I’ve been testing!

Crystals were (still) all the rage

Beautiful, colourful, whimsical products from brands like Aeos or Flow Cosmetics and their pretty Korento makeup line were some of the most eye-catchy items on display.

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Finish company Flow Cosmetics offers scrubs with crystals like amethyst and tourmaline that look and smell divine
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AEOS create Activated Energised Organic Skincare with crystals and minerals

The new naturals

High-performing natural ingredients offering a healthy, yet equally potent alternative to harsher chemicals were on display, with brands like Codex Beauty, True Skincare, Maiiro and Freya + Bailey.

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Codex Beauty’s first line is inspired by natural Irish ingredients
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True Skincare creates waterless beauty with natural & organic ingredients like matcha tea, safflower oil and superfoods
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New brand alert: Maiiro skincare products are powered by marine seaweed, rich in vitamins and minerals
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German supplement sensation, O’gaenics, offers naturally-derived vitamins and nutrients in a range addressing a wide variety of needs, from general health to wrinkle reduction
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Freya + Bailey has created vegan antioxidant care targeted for different skin types

Exciting skincare concepts

Higher Education Skincare creates clean and gentle products for students – when you’re too busy with exams (or partying) to worry about your skin. I loved the fun names like MBA, Double Major and Easy A, and the neat baby blue and white pack design.

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Malaysian company B & B Labs told me all about their microbiome-friendly sheet masks and the materials that they use not just as active ingredients, but also in the very fabric of the masks. They also have a device that uses magnetic resonance to increase the absorption of ingredients into the skin for an even more dramatic effect.

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German brand Apricot have a patented technology through which they created hyaluronic acid patches for target areas (under eye, smile lines, forehead wrinkles, décolleté etc.) that can be washed and reused up to 30 times without losing the “stickiness”. They’ve also though of adding hyaluronic acid and shower gels to leave your whole body fully hydrated.

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Parisian brand BAÛBO call themselves “the happy vulva” company, creating feminist and sustainable body care free of taboos. The three natural balms address head-to-toe skin discomfort and dryness, some more targeted than others – like The Balm aimed to soothe, hydrate and soften the vulva especially when handling post-intercourse discomfort. The brand’s aim is to harness the positive energy of the female sexuality and to discuss it freely without shame or compromise.

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American brand Flaunt Body invented a sheet mask to reduce and prevent ingrown hairs, a truly genderless problem. Using exfoliating glycolic acid, sooting cica, chamomile and aloe vera, the mask can be applied anywhere on the body, including on delicate areas like the neck post-shaving or the bikini area after epilating. An truly ingenious solution!

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Some makeup favourites

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Colourful French brand All Tigers have a line of gorgeous lip glosses and nail polishes free of nasties, in stunning playful shades
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Be Radiant, another French label, creates microbiome-friendly base make-up, including a cucumber water foundation, a silicone-free mattifying primer and these lovely powders & highlighters

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Depixym is a new concept, featuring a multi-functional colour balm in a wide variety of blendable shades that can be used in any way you want, from lip colour to blusher or eye liner. The formula is inspired by oil paint and can be easily removed with an oil cleanser, yet lasts on the skin without smudging.

Honorary mention: CBD everything

It’s not easy to find genuine CBD in all the products that have taken over the displays of high-street stores these days. A lot of them contain hemp with limited amounts of cannabinoids and even more just have hemp seed oil, which, even if still rich in healthy omega oils, offers zero CBD. British brand Green Stem, however, offers verifiable active concentrations in all their products, from ingestible drops & gummies to skincare and bath bombs. I tried their Black Cherry Oil and the new Citrus Tonic Water, which both tasted great and might have made my day even better.

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I got a small sample of the CBD Salve from US-based Sweet Mary Jane and used it in the evening after a long day of walking and standing to soothe my tired feet. Not sure if it’s all down to the Placebo effect, by I did get a pleasantly tingling sensation and my feet felt instantly lighter.

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