In June my friend and I visited the Good Ship Benefit, the new facelift given to HS Hispaniola until 31st August 2016; a permanently docked boat on the River Thames close to Embankment tube station, with a lovely view of the London Eye whilst relaxing on the Hoola decks.
As we stepped on the boat we were directed to the brow lounge. The room is an explosion of pink and the ultimate girly boudoir; the back of the sofas even have a makeup clad eye on them. The pillars and carpet were black glitter and there were also novelty bunny chairs. The bar was in the style of a beauty box.
We made ourselves comfortable and our illusionary afternoon tea was served along with a glass of fizz. Now I guess I should have guessed from the name of the tea that this would be no conventional afternoon tea, but I didn’t and I must say that this was one afternoon tea which didn’t meet my expectations. Things started well for my sweet tooth when what looked like sandwiches were actually cakes. The problem was that this also worked the other way round with items that looked like cakes being savoury. This to me was just plain weird – your eyes are telling you sweet whilst your tongue is shouting savoury!
Following the tea I was looking forward to having my brows shaped; this being the year of the brow and Benefit having long lead the way with brows, opening their first Brow Bar in 2003 at Macy’s in San Francisco. I was only then told that we should have booked an appointment and that there were none left today due to a hen party. This was in no way clear on the website so I made my feelings known and a kind assistant called Alison agreed to do them in the end as long as I wasn’t expecting a full make over. What a difference well defined brows make to your face! She used BROWVO! conditioning eyebrow primer which enhances the thickness and fullness of the brow, which I need given previous over plucking, as well as extending the wear of other brow products. She then used precisely, my brow eyebrow pencil in shade 02 to define the brows.
I always associate the Benefit brand with 1950’s glamour and so for the occasion I wore a turquoise polka dot circle skirt with a petticoat underneath both from Rocket in Rochester and a plain white vest top from Oasis. I matched this with some old silver sandals from Faith which resemble ballroom dancing shoes. I accessorised with a long heart necklace from Queen Bee in Canterbury and a stunning mint clutch shaped like a book from Aldo.
We were given a tour of the boat which also has a restaurant called Lashitude, decorated in black and orange in homage to Benefit mascara; The Pinkton Parlour – a beautiful pink cocktail bar and the Porefessional vault – an accolade to their wonderful pore disguising product. Disappointingly though we were not able to see the vault as it was booked for a private party. There is of course also a shop where you can indulge in purchasing all of their great products.
It was a shame we couldn’t see the ship in its entirity and it also rained which meant cocktails on the decks was not possible. I did feel a little disappointed with the day especially being that I have been a fan of Benefit make up for some years.
Benefit cosmetics were founded in 1976 by twin sisters in San Francisco. They began with a beauty boutique specialising in products to solve beauty dilemmas and then went on to expand into department stores. Benefit went international in 1997 and now sells at 2000 counters in 30 countries.
Live by the Benefesto; ‘We believe in WHISTLING WHILE YOU WORK IT…and faking it ‘til you make it.We believe in FAST & FABULOUS BEAUTY solutions…and that glamour is GRABBING LIFE BY THE GIGGLES and not letting go. We believe if at first you don’t succeed, APPLY MORE LIPSTICK…that SEXY gets you everywhere…and if you can’t be good, BE GORGEOUS.’
Until next time…..