Make-up guru who’s making hundreds of thousands telling girls they want much less

Of all of the methods during which the Kardashian clan have affected the feminine psyche and persuaded us to half with our money, it’s the idea of ‘contouring’ that may have had essentially the most affect.

It was Kim who launched us to the approach, circa 2008, of slimming or sculpting the face utilizing layers of artfully painted and blended color — and, ever since, magnificence counters have bowed below the burden of myriad merchandise it spawned.

Beauty entrepreneur Aimee Connolly was simply 16 on the time and beginning an after-school job on a type of very make-up counters — Urban Decay in a division retailer in Dublin.

‘I thought it was the coolest job ever,’ she says. ‘But it was also a real eye-opener.

‘Women would come up to me and I’d ask them what they had been in search of, they usually’d say: “I haven’t a clue!” They had been overwhelmed by all this alternative: sponges, foundations, brushes, concealers, blushers, colors. It all appeared so sophisticated.’

Aimee Connolly, 30, is the founder of Sculpted by Aimee, a pared-down range of easy-to-use products designed to give women the 'five-minute face'

Aimee Connolly, 30, is the founding father of Sculpted by Aimee, a pared-down vary of easy-to-use merchandise designed to present girls the ‘five-minute face’ 

And it was. Many had a caked face on account of the Kardashian regime, which was actually designed for the smartphone digital camera and will look clownish in actual life. Not to say the time it took to slap it on.

The solely little one of a single mum, Aimee filed away this first-hand information of the baffled woman-on-the-street and, after college, grew to become an expert make-up artist, finally profitable a high-profile slot on Ireland’s equal of This Morning and an entire new mainstream viewers.

In 2017, she was lastly able to launch her resolution to Kardashian ranges of complexity together with her cosmetics and skincare model, Sculpted By Aimee, a pared-back vary of easy-to-use merchandise designed to present girls the ‘five-minute face’.

Today, she’s in 500 shops, together with Boots, and this month opened her first London retailer, off Carnaby Street, within the coronary heart of the capital.

‘Women can’t spend an hour in entrance of the mirror each morning,’ she says. ‘And if you’ve acquired the correct brush and the correct product, you don’t have to.

‘There’s all this social stress to look good, however our method has all the time been much less is extra.’

A finalist at subsequent month’s Everywoman Entrepreneur Awards, Aimee more and more attracts comparisons with make-up juggernaut Charlotte Tilbury, and has an analogous steely focus beneath the (flippantly utilized) basis.

Six years in, she employs 65 folks, expects a turnover of £17.5 million in 2023 and talks of ‘becoming a global brand’, with merchandise that ‘deserve to be in every woman’s make-up bag’.

Connolly became a professional make-up artist after university, eventually winning a high-profile slot on Ireland’s equivalent of This Morning and a whole new mainstream audience

Connolly grew to become an expert make-up artist after college, finally profitable a high-profile slot on Ireland’s equal of This Morning and an entire new mainstream viewers

Refreshingly, she didn’t launch her personal enterprise to achieve flexibility in juggling work and the varsity gate, as so many feminine entrepreneurs are inclined to. At 30, Aimee is newly married to John, 36, who runs a restaurant franchise in Ireland, however it’s from her mum, Clare, that she will get her ambition.

‘I have big expectations of myself — and that’s Mum’s affect,’ she says. ‘She has never been afraid to take risks, which is a trait she definitely passed on to me. She’s obsessive about make-up, too: she solely makes use of the identical 5 merchandise, however she received’t go away the home with out them.

‘I was always the little girl who played with make-up, and the more glitter, the better. Later, I was the one who did my teenage friends’ faces, and I cherished making them appear and feel good.’

It’s not a trivial level. While Aimee acknowledges ‘none of us in the beauty industry is solving the world’s issues’, she additionally is aware of ‘we have one of the most powerful tools to build confidence and make women feel good’.

Some components of the sweetness business take it too far, she thinks.

‘Filler terrifies me. I’ve made up hundreds of girls’s faces, and the largest factor I’ve discovered is that girls assume they want increasingly. It’s “doing” your face for the digital camera.’

However, tweakments that look good on-screen can typically be a little bit of a shock in actual life, she warns. ‘I’m all for folks doing no matter makes them really feel good, however typically we want a actuality verify relating to overdoing issues like filler.’

Sculpted doesn’t Photoshop or filter fashions’ faces. ‘What’s the purpose?’ Aimee says. ‘You can’t see the make-up! We present filler-free faces with actual pores and skin — pores, spots and blemishes included.’

Today, Sculpted by Aimee is in 500 stores, including Boots. This month Connolly opened her first London store, off Carnaby Street, in the heart of the capital

Today, Sculpted by Aimee is in 500 shops, together with Boots. This month Connolly opened her first London retailer, off Carnaby Street, within the coronary heart of the capital

Before the Instagram selfie grew to become the chief measure of a girl’s self-worth, the one event after we’d want make-up to look good each on digital camera and in actual life was at our marriage ceremony. 

Before launching her model, Aimee made up many tons of of brides, and discovered the knack of learn how to make a face ‘work’ for the marriage footage with out scaring the vicar.

‘I’ve identified about that positive stability for years,’ she says. ‘With hindsight, I was learning valuable lessons for the business well before I ever imagined I’d have one.’

One of her prime suggestions for girls beginning a enterprise is to demand that others take you as significantly as you do your self.

‘I’ve been fortunate to not encounter a lot prejudice, however girls shouldn’t assume that everybody has your again. When I began, I used a manufacturing unit within the UK, however I didn’t assume the extent of consideration matched my expectations.

‘I rocked up to a meeting and there was definitely an element of them thinking, “This 22-year-old blonde doesn’t have a notion”. I informed them I’d stroll away in the event that they couldn’t match what I needed, they usually rolled their eyes. So I did.’

She took a visit to South Korea, ‘where they’re actually a lot better at making skincare and sweetness merchandise’ than the UK, or Ireland, and located a ‘fantastic’ manufacturing unit there. ‘It was one of the best things that happened to the business,’ she says.

Aimee doesn’t consider in guidelines for the over-50s relating to make-up. ‘Throw the rulebook out,’ she says. 

‘I happen to believe softer make-up looks good on all ages — and I’d do the identical type of factor on my mum’s face as I do on a 21-year-old. If you need a kitten flick at 80, then go for it.’


With the occasion season quick approaching, listed below are Aimee’s suggestions for make-up that works in actual life and for selfies . . .

1 Avoid too many layers of product on the pores and skin. Lots of primer, concealer, pretend tan or basis could look good on digital camera, however can seem boring and textured in actual life.

Make positive to make use of matte basis and keep away from something that has a shimmery glow constructed into it. The reverse is true right here: these merchandise could look good in actual life, however they’ll make your face look shiny or greasy in footage. Opt for as mild and pure a base as you possibly can.

2 Choose your concealer color fastidiously. I’m all for a brighter below eye, however too vibrant and the flash of the digital camera will make it look harsh or ashy. For a lifted complexion, go only one or two shades brighter — and cease there.

3 Be cautious along with your lip lining. Lots of us may be too beneficiant with it (together with me!) as a result of we predict we want a extra outlined lip for the digital camera. But there’s a positive line, actually, between a subtly bigger lip form and overdoing it, in order that the road appears too apparent.

4 Don’t be afraid of a bit extra blush! For your face color to stay properly on digital camera, you want to add a dab extra blush than you normally would. I’m an enormous blusher fan, so I believe a bit extra works completely in actual life, too. For events, match the color along with your lipstick.

5 Set — however don’t over-set, as lighting on digital camera may be stronger than it’s in actual life. The temptation is so as to add an additional mist of powder to control extra shine. Don’t. You nonetheless need to look vibrant in actual life quite than all of it feeling flat.

  • Aimee is a finalist within the Scale Up class of the Everywoman Awards, the winners of which will probably be introduced on December 6 ( See