June 29, 2014

Saturday at IMATS London 2014

It took me 4 years to do it, but I've finally managed to get myself to IMATS for the first time! If you've never heard of IMATS before it stands for International Makeup Artist Trade Show and is held annually in 6 different locations around the world! Since I didn't have a place to crash in London, I ended up waking up at 5 am with just over 2 hours sleep to grab a train to London.

I was really anxious the night before and stressed out about it though. You see, I didn't have anyone to go with but I decided to not let that stop me from attending but the main reason behind the unusual pang of stress is it was the first time I'd be travelling around London alone. I know it's not a big deal to most but I was very paranoid about getting lost or pick-pocketed. In the end, I managed to make it to the event without a single hitch.

I arrived at the venue around 9:15 and the line wasn't long at all! Within 10 minutes of queuing I managed to get in. I don't know how long the line was later on but I'd imagine it was shorter than previous years as this was the first time IMATS had an age limit to enter. I've also read via donotrefreeze that the focus this year was on Makeup Artists instead of 'Beauty Gurus' which worked well for me as I don't really follow any and crazy inspiring makeup is why I attended. 

One of the first stands I visited was Sugarpill's to pick up their new limited edition shadow in Olivia. I was lucky enough to be able to get a picture with Amy and Amelia Arsenic. Not only that but I actually had a conversation with Shrinkle without fangirling too hard. Next I picked up some Violet Voss glitters where EnKoreMakeup was selling some of his brush soaps. Both the Sugarpill crew and Koren were super friendly but honestly everyone working at the show just had an awesome and friendly vibe to them. 

My favorite makeup works were all the body painting ones. As I've already mentioned, I'm not really one to spend time watching Youtube beauty guru videos, however, I really do love MadeYewLook's work and she uses a lot of Mehron products. So I made sure to stop by their stall to pick up a few things by them and learn more about the products. I was gutted to find they weren't discounted unless you had a pro card. 

Whilst it can be tempting to attend IMATS purely for the discounts on brands like MAC, Inglot or Makeup Forever, I'm glad I walked around a lot to check out what else was on offer. One of my favorites to come across was Body FX Prosthetics from New Zealand who had some awesome pieces for potential Halloween looks and Cosplays. Makeup Atelier Paris is a new one that I was quite curious about, I loved the packaging on the palettes. I was also very surprised to find Melt Cosmetics lipsticks were being sold at the Beauty B Cosmetics stand as well! 

All in all, IMATS definitely felt like more than just a trade show. It's a brilliant place to connect to, be inspired by and learn from experts in the beauty industry. Beauty blogging and makeup can be very shallow things so it was amazing to be in a massive hall filled with inspiring folk who treat it as an art form. If you're into Youtube stars and whatnot, you'll probably notice a few of them around, I don't really know many of them but somehow managed to recognise a few.

The crowds were nowhere near as bad as I expected. I've attended other shows that were a far more congested, even Beauty UK felt busier despite being in Brum. If you've managed to survive a comic con, you'll probably be okay at the event. I say this, but this probably only applied to the London one as Shrinkle of Sugarpill mentioned attendees in other Imats were slightly aggressive but us Brits amazed her with our politeness and pro queuing skills. The worst thing was probably the queue for NYX, which was ridiculous as they're stocked in certain Next stores in the UK.

Tickets for the show are £40 unless you're a blogger with the numbers to get a press pass, which I'm not. If you're strategic with your spending it's actually not hard to get your ticket money back on discounts. For example, a custom Makeup Forever 10 pan palette was selling for around £48 and purchasing that from Guru Makeup Emporium would cost you around £125! They even had the Sepia Blue and Midnight Glow palettes on offer for £10 each. I was so tempted to grab a whole bunch of shadows but I decided against it as I already have so many on my wishlist.

The show is open to the public, although you have to be at least 17 years old to attend, I do think it's worth attending at least once as long as you have the money to spend.

Have you attended IMATS before? Was your experience anything like mine?


  1. Great post :) The pictures are great and gives a great feel for the day! I'm not used to seeing this type of beauty as I'm the kind of person who does watch beauty gurus on YouTube. I would have loved to get some discounted bits though. I would have hated going to London by myself too, glad you got IMATS safely!

    I'm hosting a Benefit They're Real eye liner giveaway on my blog if you're interested in taking part :)

    Yazmin xx

  2. So sad I couldn't go, it seems like an amazing experience!

    Sam xo

  3. I want to go to an IMATS so badly! I can't believe you got a pic with shrinkle- I would be freaking out so much!

  4. IMATS this year looked and sounded amazing! I would love to attend IMATS next year. :D

    I have to say I think you're incredibly brave traveling to London on your own, as well as making your way around London and to the event on your own too. I wouldn't have the nerve to, I'd be too anxious. :')

    Lovely picture, you look and sounded like you had an amazing time. ^_^