42 weeks later…

So here we are, I’ve reached the end of my PR placement here in Camden. It’s been an amazing 42 weeks where I struggle to begin to talk about everything I’ve learnt.

As my very first office-based job, starting out was an absolute whirlwind. Stepping straight into the fast-paced environment of the Catalyst office and immediately becoming part of the wonderful team.

If I wrote on here everything I’ve been involved with or worked on in the last year, I’d be creating an endless blog so; here are my top five things of working in the Catalyst office:

1- I have to dedicate to the amazing team here at Catalyst because without them, none of the below would have happened. I was lucky enough to not only get a placement in a field I’m passionate about – hair and beauty PR, but also to become part of such a strong and friendly team. During my time here I have developed both work and personal relationships with everyone I’ve worked with making my time here even more memorable.

2- Copywriting has always been one of my strongest attributes but never have I had the chance to explore so many avenues of writing, from professional letters, press releases, news stories, blog for Catalyst, blogs for clients, Tweets, Facebook messages, client proposals and so many in between. Varying the way I write from week to week has broadened the way I think about writing and made me aware of all the varying styles.

3 – Has to be the Hair Awards. This really was something entirely new for me and I loved it. I got to witness as Catalyst took on all the different areas, from finding a venue, organising the event, inviting nominees and celebrities and everything in between – I loved being part of it and the final event was an amazing experience.

4- The clients. It wasn’t long after I started Catalyst that I got given my own clients to work with. The diversity of clients I have worked with including hairdressers and products meant again I got to write in varying styles, various stories and got to work with a wide spectrum of journalists from trade, hair and consumer press.

5 – Working with journalists. Again, when I started this was all very new to me, I soon learnt the ways of working with various journalists and the huge benefit of arranging regular journalist meetings to get them excited about your client. It was a massive learning curve for me, being on the phone regularly and forming relationships with individual journalists.

So now I’m off to live the student life for one final year, the only difference is this time I’m going off with an incredible portfolio of what I have achieved this year as well as one hell of an experience under my belt.

So until I write again, take care. xx

Summer Blues

So far the summer’s weather has been pretty lacklustre. Luckily the warmth of the sunshine in the last couple of days has certainly helped to lift my beauty blues! I absolutely love brightly coloured beauty products, which help you to match gorgeous summer days. Luckily for me consumer magazines including Grazia and Now seem to be mirroring my mood with beauty trend reports focussing on bright aquamarine shades this week.

The theme for sea-side blues has emerged as a growing beauty and fashion story, which looks set to snowball in the coming months. From the Parisian runways, the narrative of an undersea adventure was documented by Style.com and penned “Ocean’s 12”. Striking corals and shell pinks were contrasted with a spectrum of bold bright blues. Colours were adorned across tropical prints, relaxed tailored dresses and sheer sequined garments. Seamlessly, the beauty industry has pioneered the under-water trend into a range of essential products, that will help you to shimmer and sparkle like the Mediterranean Sea.

My personal recommendations for achieving the under-sea beauty trend this summer are as follows:

Bright confident nail-varnishes are fabulous for adding instant drama to your talons. This summer the hottest shade you can buy is blue! Buy metallic or matte, turquoise or teal, spearmint or azure: it is guaranteed whatever shade you choose your nails will help you embrace the under-sea story.

Your eyes are the perfect place to experiment with summer’s hottest shades. Be brave and apply shimmery glittery shadows to your eyes. With plenty of palettes to play with, it is possible to add blended depth and drama. For a dramatic night-time look, I like to apply a rich turquoise across my lids, complimented with midnight shading. You can choose to be more subtle than me, and use a bright eye-pencil to add just a hint of sea-side shading.

Bright blue works perfectly for nails and eyes, but it is a different story when it comes to your lips! Unless you are a fan of the outrageous, bright blue lips might not be your cup of tea. Instead choose lipsticks and glosses in shades of coral, perfect for a transitional day to evening look.

Even if the weather turns horrendous again (it is England after all), at least your make-up bag can give you an instant holiday hit! I know for sure, that I will be rocking bright blue nails come rain or shine.

2012 Summer Hair: Turn the heat up!

From fun braided updos to tousled beach waves, turn the heat up with this years’ summer hairstyle trends and cross the boundaries of laid back and stylish. Whatever your preference, there’s something for everyone, and with many styles easy to create there really is no excuse not to have some fun creating new looks!

One of the most popular trends, as seen from the Valentino Spring 2012 show, is the milkmaid braids which can be styled in a number of ways. A practical way to work this look is to pin braids up, adding an element of fun to any outfit. An alternative style is a low back-braid over the shoulder, or experiment with pinned-up side-twists and long locks for a quick-fix romantic look.

Another key look this season is the high-placed topknot. If you feel this is too bold, go for a traditional ballerina bun with added volume by creating a slightly messy bun and height at the crown, perfect for the leading carefree theme this summer. Loose beach waves are a massive hit this summer and an alternative to the many updos; wearing these in a side-swept fashion looks fresh and current.

If you’re a fan of super-straight hair, don’t worry! This look is also hot this season, often worn with a side-part for a sexy, sophisticated look. Ponytails remain the perfect style for summer, and with a statement pair of earrings on show this look continues to be a hit. Sectioned takes on the trend with two or more ponytails transcend high-fashion, whilst centre-parting the hair at the front gives the look a softer edge. Another high-fashion look and one of the most talked about trends from the catwalk is the wet-look hair trend. This look is fitting for the summer months and works both in the up and down styles.

In terms of accessories, knotted head scarves and elastic headbands are useful and stylish; maintain the look from day to night with a black version. Ponytails provide the ideal opportunity to accessorize, such as adding a wrap around the hair for a 90s-inspired finish.

This exciting variety of fun, stylish yet practical hair trends are waiting to be embraced, so get creative and have fun experimenting with your hair this summer!

Magazines, Magazines, Magazines!

I’m a magazine junkie. There’s no denying it. I love walking into a larger WHSmith store and being greeted with wall after wall, shelf after shelf of magazines. While the ones I buy tend to fall under a particular category, I also wander past the other and am always astounded about the variety that’s out there; there is quite honestly something for everyone.

Luckily for me, the types of magazines I love are in abundance – women’s weeklies and women’s monthlies. I make sure I don’t buy all the mags all the time (otherwise I’d have no money to live off!) but I have my favourites then I have the ones I like to think of as a ‘treat’! You all know which ones I’m talking about; whether they’re the ones that tell of stories of tragic family histories or are just page after page of the most beautiful catwalk looks that I can immerse myself in for a brief period of time.

Knowledge of the magazines out there and what they include can work wonders for hair and beauty PR pros; but an obsession with them is just a bonus. It means I can sit at my desk and create ideas for how to get my clients the best possible coverage all thanks to knowing what regular features the magazines have and what’s trending.

Knowing who’s reading what magazines and who each magazine is aimed at can give hair and beauty PR’s extra leverage on how to aim your press releases to specific audiences. Usefully, this also gives me an excuse for buying too many magazines.

Amazing Consumer Hair and Beauty PR Coverage

Our consumer coverage is always on the rise here at Catalyst. As the hair and beauty PR team, it’s part of our role to stay in contact and form relationships with journalists from a whole range of magazines both in the consumer and trade press.

Both trade and consumer coverage benefit our clients in different ways so making sure we talk to journalists regularly over the phone, sending them our latest releases and having frequent journalist meetings is vital to keep our coverage at its peak! Just in the last few weeks, we’ve been out meeting Cosmopolitan, Elle, Reveal and Stylist magazines; it allows us to get to know the journalists personally and to push our products in the best possible way.

Here’s a small sample of some of our latest consumer scans to whet the coverage palette:

We’ve got Beever products and the Orofluido Sahara splashed all over Pride Magazine.

Then there was Colomer Professional’s ‘Tween Time being raved about by the Now team.

Company placed the Halo Feather range as a must-have for the festival season.

The hugely popular Irish ‘U’ magazine tipped Revlon Professional Equave and Orofluido Sahara as recommended products to create celeb styles.

Love it! loved Beever Spritz Fix.

More magazine deemed Beever Sculpting Lotion as the go-to product for creating perfect curls.

Glamour Magazine Online wrote an amazing review for 3thirty Hair and Beauty