The Beauty Report: pretty and powerful for women’s day

 

Tomorrow is International Women’s Day. The day aims to raise gender equality awareness and celebrate women’s achievements. Historically, women have been sidelined. Taking a day to acknowledge that, in order to bask in the progress we’ve made and focus on what is yet to be done, certainly seems like a good use for a Sunday.

Make-up isn’t important. Not objectively. It’s a frivolity. The way we look doesn’t matter, either. Except, to an extent, it does.

An article in the Telegraph in 2013 revealed that more than two thirds of employers admitted they wouldn’t hire a female applicant who went bare faced to her interview. Apparently, it implies slovenliness and lack of effort. So wearing make-up immediately increases your chances of getting the job, or at least reduces your chances of being dismissed on sight, unjust as that may be.

This is obviously entirely ridiculous, but while one of the purposes of International Women’s Day is to help build awareness of lazy thinking around gender, women all over Ireland (and the world) still have to walk into job interviews to face a level of judgment more extreme than that suffered by their male competition.

Dress for Success is a Dublin based charity which helps women get into the workforce by providing suits and other workwear for interview and the initial stages of a job, as well as ongoing career mentoring, job application advice and confidence building.

Some 75 per cent of women who have used the service report that they are happy with their progress and situation – 57 per cent in the workforce, the rest in education or training programmes.

Women who use the service report feeling more confident about the prospect of an impending interview.

PP_POTROUGE_SS15_CMYK_WEBLuxury cosmetics brand Bobbi Brown launched its Pretty Powerful Campaign in 2013. It focuses on building confidence in women and girls while providing education and training programmes. From February 26th and throughout March, the iconic Pretty Powerful Pot Rouge – a lovely combination lip and cheek product in a limited edition pink shade – will launch on Bobbi Brown counters around Ireland.

The new shade – Pretty Powerful II – is a universally flattering pink, and would make a very appropriate Mother’s Day gift.

Sonya Lennon, founder of Dress for Success, says “By supporting this campaign and buying the Pretty Powerful Pot Rouge you’re giving women the confidence to succeed in work and life, it’s a win win”.

The Pretty Powerful Pot Rouge retails at €26 and is available from counters nationwide as well as online. The full recommended retail price less VAT goes to Dress for Success, and can make an enormous difference to the number of women the charity can help, and the services it can offer.

So in the spirit of International Women’s Day, I’m recommending just one product this week because it is more than a frivolity or something pretty to covet, though it does possess those qualities. This blush is support for women that you can wear on your face, and look great while you do it.

lkennedy@irishtimes.com

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