Monday 9 May 2011

Skin Deep talks to...

Deborah Johnson, Beauty Exective at Pure Public Relations
I've worked with Deb for a couple of years due to her role as the PR for brands including Absolution, Mavala and Malin + Goetz so am excited to have her on board for May's Skin Deep expert interview!

SD: So, why beauty PR?
DJ: To be honest, beauty was not an intentional career choice but PR certainly was. I started out by assisting a friend who was the PR for the Arnolfini Gallery in Bristol whilst at university. I loved the creative and social aspects of PR so decided it was definitely an industry I wanted to work in. Once I returned to London, I started interning with fashion focussed agencies as I thought why not combine my oldest love with my newest passion. After quite a while interning, I was told about an opening that had come up at Pure and given a recommendation by my then boss. As they say, the rest is history.

SD: What are the best aspects of working in PR?
DJ: The team at Pure and our brands are definitely the best aspects of my job. I know this sounds like a cliche and "yawn" but we're a bit like a little family; which isn't surprising considering that in our current state, we spend more & more time in the office than we do at home. We're all quite different and have really strong personalities which you'd think would be disasterous amongst a group of women but it works well for us. I'm also 100% dedicated to the brands I work on; I don't think I could do this job if I wasn't.

SD: And the worst?
DJ: One of my least favourite aspects of the industry is the biased favouritism to larger brands. I understand it cannot be avoided in some areas but it's frustrating nonetheless.

SD: What would you be doing if you weren't working in beauty PR?DJ: I went to university with the view of forging a career in film or photography so I like to think that's what I would be doing if PR did not work out.

SD: What's the best insider tip you've picked up?
DJ: Cleanse, cleanse, cleanse. I've had so many great people tell me about how important a good cleansing regime is. I mean, what's the point of slathering your skin with lotions and potions if it's not clean enough for the products to be absorbed.

SD: You have 5 minutes to get ready. What do you do?
DJ: Easy! It takes me roughly 10 minutes to get ready every morning. Once I've showered, it goes like this:
1) Moisturise with Absolution La Creme du Jour- the best facial moisturiser I've come across for a while. It's gentle and leaves skin hydrated throughout the day. 2) A couple of coats of Diorshow Mascara in Waterproof Blackout- I'm constantly touching my face & this is the only mascara that stops me smudging. 3) Work Topshop Makeup Blush in Pinch subtly onto cheeks- I don't wear foundation but this instantly lifts my complexion without making me feel too "done". 4) Quick slick of Malin + Goetz Lip Moisturiser on the lips- I've never experienced a lip product like this. It's colourless and odourless and keeps my lips moisturised for ages without being too greasy. 5) Spritz myself with Davidoff Cool Water for Men followed by my Byredo Gypsy Water- I like these fragrances as individuals but together they're so intoxicating and heady.

SD: Any beauty guilty pleasures?
DJ: I'm quite low key when it comes to beauty products but I'm obsessed with nail polishes. I have them lining most window sills in my flat and even have a special locker where I house some of them. Right now, I'm into Black Oyster from the Mavala Select Collection. I guess black is quite an unusual colour choice for spring but it contains these tiny flecks of silver, gold and purple which just dance on your fingernails. Absolutely beautiful!

SD: Any favourite treatments?
DJ: I don't really have the patience for professional treatments but once a week I treat my hair to Philip Kingsley's Elasticizer Extreme. It has been a godsend since I decided to chop all my hair off and grow a natural afro.

SD: What would be your desert island beauty essentials?
DJ: Ooh, most definitely my Malin + Goetz Lip Moisturiser, Raw Coconut Balm (great for hydrating skin and hair), Absolution L'Eau Soir at Matin Cleansing Water (cleanses and tones my skin whilst leaving it impeccably refreshed) and a few bottles of nail polish to keep me distracted.

SD: What do you predict will be the next big thing in beauty?
DJ: I think it's impossible for me to say what the next big thing will be as trends are constantly evolving. That said, I'd love to see an insurgence of the "natural face". I find it most frustrating when I see young girls layering their faces with makeup and often question why it's so hard for some women to accept and embrace how they naturally look. I guess I'm a bit of a hippy like that.

SD: Any secret London hotspots?
DJ: I recently discovered Being Content in Marylebone. It stocks a great range of quality natural and organic beauty products.

SD: Finally, what does Skin Deep mean to you?
DJ: To me, Skin Deep is an acceptance and understanding of all aspects of YOUR beauty.


  1. Great post - nice to hear a bit more about Deborah!

  2. Thanks- I really enjoyed this interview & her pic is fab too, isn't it?!


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