This weekend past myself and two fellow bloggers (Carrie and Olivia) were whisked down to Poole to learn about all things Lush Cosmetics, from visiting the factories were each product is handmade, to seeing the new Lush Digital Offices and even visiting the first ever Lush store - no stone was left unturned and here is what I learned along the way.
Everything is made by hand...
We visited five factories in total, now I don't know about you but when I think of factories dark, dismal, soulless battery hen operations spring to mind? Well I can truly say that was not the case, everyone seemed to be jovial, music was playing, workers where chatting as they sculpted and moulded various products. There is a contagious enthusiasm for Lush in the air, I have always enjoyed snooping around my local Lush store but never considered myself a die hard fan until well Friday! Everyone who is employed by Lush has this deep rooted love for the brand, can answer just about every question you can through their way and truly enjoy their work. It honestly was and is a beautiful thing. Can I just quickly state that making a bath bomb or any Lush product for that matter is not as simple as said workers make it look, we attempted several times and lets just say my efforts were abysmal. This brings me on to the opening title - everything is made by hand. All the soaps are hand poured and concocted on site which can include real fresh fruit (their walk in fridge is something else let me tell you) and locally caught Poole Marina seaweed. I think like most I knew everything from Lush was handmade, fresh and generally a brand with wonderful ethos but never put all that much thought into it. It wasn't until I seen everything in action did I fully appreciate the brands efforts - if I am honest I am still rather gob-smacked and how much effort goes into every product and presentation of each item. Inspiring.
A real kitchen. This small team (who are absolutely lovely and beyond patient - my measuring skills leave a lot to be desired) work away each day in a small kitchen (not much bigger than the one I have at home) cooking up small batches of exclusive products. Compared to the Lush Factories the batches the Lush Kitchen cook up each day (the menu changes daily so if you are not fast you really are last) are tiny - between 35-400 items. Unlike traditional Lush items you can only purchase Lush Kitchen goodies online here, however the cool part is you can interact with the team on twitter (@LushKitchen) and request items. It could be that you have a desire for Lush Kitchen to create the Comforter Shower Gel (I really, really would love that - hint, hint) or a soap that smells just like your favourite bath melt (again hint hint *cough* You've Been Mangoed *cough*). You imagine, you request it and you never know the Lush Kitchen might just make it happen. If you have a favourite item that was discontinued here is where you want to watch as every now and then they will whip up a batch of a long lost love.
Lush 29 High Street
This is the first ever Lush store and it is situated on 29 High Street, Poole. It is honestly the cutest little Lush store I have ever ventured inside - it just screams seaside town and although small in size the not only carry a vast range of products but also have a dreamy Spa. Lush 29 High Street is of course where it all began for the brand, upstairs still houses kitchens/labs where original products were created (they are still in use today, which is just magical). Lush 29 High Street also has an exclusive fragrance which you can't purchase anywhere else - 29 High Street. This intense perfume encapsulates the scent of a Lush store which you can't really openly describe as it is so complex. Basically imagine every Lush product you have ever picked up and inhaled - crammed into one bottle. It shouldn't work but it does. As with every Lush store the staff here are beyond knowledgeable and treated us to a facial with products tailored to our needs (full post on that later this week). It really is a lovely store, if you live locally you must pay a visit.
I have rambled on quite some bit but it was such a mind blowing experience that I am still fully digesting it all, no doubt other snippets of what I have learned will crop up in other Lush posts in the future. I can now say that I will forever have difficulty passing my local Lush store and not popping in to purchase goodies now that I can fully appreciate just how much work goes into each product. Lush have created a monster ha!
As a side note I was in no way encouraged or asked to write this post, I simply wanted to share my experience as I know so many are huge fans of the brand.