Linda is one of those amazing facialists who deserves the title guru.
Linda has worked in the beauty industry for over 40 years. Throughout that time she has noticed a dramatic change in how our skin is evolving, researching what is caused these changes, it became very clear that in the last 60 years toxins are a major factor. She felt that most of the products on the market weren’t addressing this, preferring to stick to ‘oily, dry, dehydrated and combination’, so she developed her own range.
Here she tells us what took her into her career and how we can all achieve glowing skin.
What made you want to go into beauty and how did you start out?
From an early age I had always been interested in fashion mainly from my mother and grandmother. The fifties was a hats and gloves era and at the age of 8 I appeared in the local newspaper showing off my new emerald green coat with a title of “Lindaline” I always seemed more interested in make-up and fashion with my BIBA hairstyles and false lashes which I have worn since the age of 14 but whatever direction my future was going to take me it all came to an abrupt end.
When I was in the middle of my GCSE’s I was diagnosed with Crohn’s Disease and due to several major operations that followed I could not finish my education. Eventually I was offered a Saturday job in the local House of Fraser store in their toiletries department and was approached by an Estee Lauder Rep and offered an interview to join promotion team and this is how my career in the beauty industry began.
Was there anything else that you would have liked to try?
I never found academia easy even though my siblings excelled and in those days your options were either typing or teaching so I never gave anything else a thought.
You also worked with Cary Grant. How did that come about, What was he like and did that represent a change in your career?
I was approached by Faberge to leave Estee Lauder and the lure of a company car made my decision easy. Looking back, Faberge were the first company to use celebrities to endorse their products and Cary Grant just happened to be a director of the company visiting London during their trade shows. Mr Grant was quite reserved and although very handsome was not the same character we saw on-screen.
I also met Farrah Fawcett who was the face of Organics the hair range of Faberge as at the time she was in Charlies’ Angels and famous for her hairstyles. My one regret is that I had pictures taken with them all that unfortunately have disappeared and as the company no longer exists it would be impossible to try to get copies.
You have worked with some amazing celebrities from Farrah Fawcett and Penelope Cruz to Sienna Miller and Zoe Saldana but you have said that Eartha Kitt was most memorable, why?
When I moved to London I ran the West End studio for Sky TV. Of all the guests I met and made up in studio, Eartha Kitt was the most memorable. She became an International star fighting the prejudice of her mixed race background and whom Orson Welles called “ The most exciting woman in the world “
Over the years I have worked on hundreds of celebrities, and they are not different to any other clients. Every client I treat is simply looking for the best possible result and that is what I always aim to achieve.
Why did you decide to start developing your own skin care range?
I found I had no option but to develop my own skin care brand because existing products did not address the changes I saw on my clients’ skin.
How much are you able to get involved in the creation of your product, what is the process?
Very much involved. I give my cosmetic chemist a brief of what I am looking for a product to achieve on the skin and he will advise me on the best ingredients available. Then I get my first sample to test and the product will go back and forward in this manner until I get something I can actually see results with. Then you work on the right texture then the right fragrance and two years later you have your first product. It is an ongoing procedure as the strict regulations governing cosmetics change as new ingredients become available and others are removed.
How do your products differ from the plethora out there on the market?
The LM products differ from every other product on the market as they deal with skin problems not skin types. Working on clients every day for the past twenty years, it became very obvious to me that skin was changing. I also discovered that different traditional skin types would show up on the same client at various times. As other brands dealt with oily, dry and combination separately and could not be combined I needed to come up with a solution. Hence the LM brand. Our skin changes every day due to environmental factors, chemicals, toxins and most importantly hormones that have flooded our food chain for the past 60 years. Whether internal or external, these factors have changed the skin of our younger generation; most women over 50 do not have the same issues young women have today. It took years of research, talking to clients and asking about diet, lifestyle etc to understand they needed a product that dealt with each of their skin problems but something they could overlap when required and this we have achieved.
What been the biggest challenge in your career?
To educate women to change the way they think about the products they use and how to look after their skin. Skin is an organ and needs feeding with different nutrients. If your product completely absorbs, apply more it’s hungry. Don’t use the same cream every day year in and year out. I designed the LM products for you to choose something different when you need it. Think about how your skin was during the day. Sometimes oily, sometimes tight, sometimes red and apply the relevant product. It is so simple and the difference it makes is amazing.
What are the biggest skin problems you see?
With today’s lifestyles, hydration is paramount from the outside not just drinking more water. Pigmentation is also a side effect of hormones, which many don’t realise. Stop being paranoid about one line or one spot. I have seen so many disasters from clients taking drastic measures when the odd spot will disappear if you ignore it. And fine lines plump out with more hydration. Character lines or expression lines are nothing to do with ageing.
How can our belle’s better look after their skin?
Start by investing in a few LM products. The products are 100ml double or more of other brands and you will see results.
What is next for the Linda Meredith brand?
As a company this year we are looking to expand more throughout the UK and handing the reins over to my son will then give me time to work on my first book.
What three universal truths do you live by?
Honesty, Care and Compassion and be kind to your fellow-man.
Experience a Linda Meredith facial at her exclusive clinic in Knightsbridge or visit her website to buy her products – we recommend the Celebrities Secrets selection.