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Our beauty buying director Kathy Murray shares the best beauty advice she has ever received and why choosing sustainable beauty is so important right now.

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Kathy Murray, Beauty Buying Director, Brown Thomas Arnotts.


Your Skin But Better CC+ Cream with SPF 50+



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The best beauty advice I've been given?

The best beauty advice I've been given is that it's better to be pale and interesting than to have aged skin. This is something which has never been more important with the rise of skin cancer at the moment, we now have the knowledge to keep our skin safe and beautiful. The advice is simple, put Factor SPF 50 on. There are so many amazing tanning products out there, so there is no need to expose your skin to the sun. It's also never been so easy to protect yourself as so many of your everyday favourites contain SPF from moisturisers to foundations, you can easily protect yourself, just by wearing your everyday makeup.

How Has The Beauty Business Changed For The Better In The Last Decade?

With 30 years in the beauty industry I have seen a lot of change and that it's innovation that leads the way. Great beauty products always begin with great scientists in their labs developing and improving formulas. Take SPF for example, over the last ten years, the range of products that have appeared on the market that addresses this skin concern is phenomenal. The ever evolving science of beauty means there is always something new to try, which keeps my job very interesting.


The Discovery Duo



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What In Your Opinion Do You Think Irish Women Are Most Drawn To In The Beauty World?

Irish women love beauty and taking care of their skin. They have great knowledge of what works and doesn't work for them. They are also super savvy about skincare and absolutely adore colour and makeup. As we are a country that doesn't have the advantage of a Mediterranean-style climate, Irish women really focus on great products for the face. They love experimenting and having fun with makeup and want up-to-the minute information on the newest brands.


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Nunaia a new Irish, sustainable brand. Their philosophy is to create skincare rituals that are designed to nourish, restore and renew not just your skin but your overall wellbeing.

What Tips Would You Give A Customer For Shopping Beauty More Sustainably?

My top 3 tips would be:
1. Read and know the ingredients in your favourite beauty products, the ingredients are the source of knowledge you need to find out how sustainable the product is.

2. Go refillable, there are so many products offering refills which means you can reduce your waste.

3. Find brands that are doing it right, there is such an amazing offer of brands which make it so much easier to shop more sustainably across skincare, makeup and fragrance.



Nourishing Radiance Serum



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What do you think is the future of beauty post Covid-19?

We saw during lockdown that at-home beauty became very important, during this time customers had time to indulge in pampering rituals. We recognised this trend and came back with some amazing new brands to inspire our customer from Nu Face, Skin Gym and Margaret Dabbs. Also, the focus on beauty as wellbeing is a growing trend which is definitely where I see the future going.

What is your beauty am pm routine?

I have always believed in the simple, classic yet effective routine of cleansing, toning and moisturising. I love clean nourishing skincare and serums which are a great barrier for the skin from: La Prairie, Augustinus Bader, Tata Harper, Kiehl's, La Mer and many more. I believe if you look after your skin your skin will look after you.


Blue Heart Crème de la Mer 100ml



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The Brown Thomas Beauty Hall in our Dublin store.

What has been the highlight of your career in beauty?

Opening our amazing Beauty Halls in Brown Thomas Dublin, Cork, Limerick, Galway and Arnotts were the very best moments for me. I particularly loved working recently on the Beauty Hub, bringing new sustainable brands from vegan, organic and cruelty free to Ireland. And on a personal note I enjoyed the privilege of having tea with Leonard Lauder (son of Estée Lauder) in his Manhattan home to chat about the future of beauty on my regular visits to NYC. Happy memories.

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Leonard A. Lauder and Ronald S. Lauder with Estée Lauder.

What One Thing Do You Do In Your Own Daily Life To Be More Sustainable?

I am pedantic about my S'Well water bottle which I bring everywhere so I don't buy water in plastic bottles. I also donate my clothes to good causes and have a trusty tote bag from the Guggenheim Museum which is both wearable art and sustainable all on one and it gives me great joy. You can do so many things to be more sustainable that don't take much time but really do make a big difference.


Ombre Metallic Water Bottle 0.5L


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Was €49.19

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Who or what inspires you?

I have always been inspired by creativity. Be that in science or the arts and when you think of the vision of Coco Chanel over 100 years ago pushing boundaries and daring to dream with products like No. 5, which are still so relevant and loved generation after generation. I am also continually inspired by the bright names in beauty from Estée Lauder, Elizabeth Arden, Laura Mercier, Charlotte Tilbury, Tata Harper, Sunday Riley, François Nars and the divine Mr. Tom Ford. Who could not fail to be inspired with a cast like this to work with?


Resurfacing Serum



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What Books Are You Enjoying Right Now?

I love true crime stories and biographies, on my beside table is Court Number One: The Old Bailey Trials by Thomas Grant. I am also reading about Churchill by Max Hastings at the moment too. You can learn so much from autobiographies on how people have overcome challenges and how to do things better.

With 30 years in the business Kathy Murray has brought some of the most famous names in beauty to our shores, her belief in sustainbility and in Irish women's love of beauty has made our beauty halls and our online offering one of the best in the world.



From clean beauty to clean eatting, check out our coveted recipe for vegan roast cauliflower salad from our new restaurant and Say Hello to Hugh Brown's.