Monday, 1 February 2010


As some of you know I was at IMATS on Saturday. It was my first time at such a show and I'm glad I went, but I have mixed feelings about it.

First of all, the location. As lovely as Alexandra palace and its view is it is inconvenient for most people to get to because it is not in central London, and also quite a walk (as I discovered on that frozen morning) from the tube station. For the size of the exhibition the venue really did not have to be that big! Had a smaller space been rented no doubt the ticket price (about £40) would have been much reduced.
Which brings me on to my next point- the ticket price was far too high for what it promised- only entry. For example, a ticket to London fashion weekend last year was £40, which not only let you in to sample all the discounted stalls, but gave you seats in a fashion show and a goodie bag worth well over £100. Also, by the time I got there (about 9.30am) the queue to pick up pre-paid tickets was snaking all throughout the front entrance and it took a good half an hour of patience before we could be even allowed in.
By 10.00am all the stalls were extremely crowded and it was pretty much impossible to get in and view products (MUFE and Crown brushes in particular) and unfortunately many items had already sold out (less than half the colours of OCC lip tars were left). This leads me to wonder, since most people had pre-booked tickets (there was no queue for tickets on the door), the organisers must have been aware of how many people were attending, therefore setting up small stalls, where only about 3 people could safely swatch, seems counterintuitive. 

The show did offer some amazing discounts (35% off MUFE) and brands that are not normally available in the UK. I didn't pick up too many things partly because I had planned on being strict with my money, and partly because at most stalls no cards were accepted so you had to either pay with cash (and yes, you guessed it, the queue for the sole cash machine was enormous) or have your card details written down and billed later. I gave in and paid by this method at OCC because I was desperate to get at least a couple of lip tars, though most of the colours I wanted had sold out. I also purchased a couple of brushes from Crown, a back-up of my favourite MUFE HD foundation, some of their full cover concealer and smoky lash mascara as well as a few eyelashes and a Z-pallette. 

One of the highlights of the day was meeting Koren of EnKore makeup. He is as lovely and bubbly in real life as he is in his videos! I am only sad that I couldn't go back on Sunday to watch his talk on naked pigments with his beautiful model- ooglemakeup!
I also really enjoyed all the creative work on exhibition and it was fun to watch the works progressing throughout the morning.

However, with an early start, a long walk in the freezing cold, a grumpy bf who needed feeding, and after having to fight to the front of every stall I didn't last very long. I wish I had taken advantage of everything on offer, but because it was so busy I didn't feel I could look at everything I wanted to. I'm not really one for big crowds, and prefer to browse in my own time. Although this post seems a little negative I really did enjoy my time at IMATS and would recommend it to any makeup junkie. I just wish I had been more prepared and arrived earlier with cash in hand ;).

Did you visit IMATS this weekend? What did you think? Would you recommend it to a friend and would you go again? I would love to know what you guys thought! xx
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