Maggie and Annie are gorgeous. Let me repeat - really gorgeous. Tall, statuesque, slim, with chiseled features, the girls look every bit like the illustrated Benefit girls that adorn the brand's packaging. And they have perfect makeup to boot, but I'm sure you could've guessed. Myself, along with some other bloggers, had lunch with them, and it was good, although I felt quite sorry for them at one point - we were all so excitedly bombarding them with questions that they probably didn't get to eat very much!
The questions they answered were wide-ranging and varied - they answered everything from how they came up with the name of the products, to what their hectic work schedules were like. It was all very informative, and very fascinating - it was like having a sneek peek into Willy Wonka's chocolate factory, only for makeup! And we learned that there's a new tint called Cha Cha Tint that's going to be out sometime soon! I can't wait to see it in person!
One of the things that struck me about the brand was that their top 10 bestsellers were more or less consistent from country to country. This I found interesting, because having lived in the USA, Europe, and Asia, my experience with makeup has been that cosmetic preferences vary widely with regions, and brands often cater to this by releasing geographically-specific products. So in essence, a product by a brand would be released only in the USA for the American market, while another product by the same brand would be released only in Asia for the Asian market.
However, Benefit didn't play that way. What they release in the USA is also released in Europe and Asia, which I really respected. It meant that they really strove to create colours that were universal and wearable in nature, and to formulate products that people would like. I really liked that. It meant that a lot of the gimmickery that often goes into targeting the local market (e.g. hiring local celebrities, tweaking advertisements to different regions, re-naming products for different countries) is done away with. So what sells is not the gimmicky stuff, but the actual product at the end of the day, which I thought was pretty cool.
And the top 10 bestsellers? I couldn't remember all of them, but they include Porefessional, Bad Gal, That Gal, Some Kinda Gorgeous, as well as the powder blushes (here there are regional differences - Dandelion is more popular in Asia, following the light-blush trend, while in the West, with bronzing a popular trend, Dallas and Coralist are preferred). Well, I remembered 5 out of 10. Not too bad, right? Please don't kill me for not remembering the other 5! *Ducks angry Benefit fans*
Another thing I liked about the brand was that unlike your typical big-name cosmetics brand, they were actually very lean when it comes to advertising. In fact, Maggie and Annie claimed that most of their sales come through word-of-mouth! That would be ABSOLUTELY the first time I've heard any major brand say that. Count me impressed!
And yes, that's all of us together with the Benefit beauties! As you can see, they were towering above us! When I said tall and statuesque, I really wasn't kidding. These girls could be models, really. I feel honoured to have met them, and I hope those little titbits I garnered from lunch were useful to you! You can bet I'll be watching out for Cha Cha Tint to hit the stores, hopefully soon!