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Iris Law
@lirisaw

Iris Law on sustainability and spot-electrocuting facials


TextIris Rosindo-Chalangeas

We get the low down on the model’s one-minute beauty routine, how she’s exploring sustainable beauty practices, and the acne treatment she’d invent in 2100

Primrose Hill-born IMG model Iris Law has tried her fair share of weird treatments. “I’d recommend this facial I had where they electrocute and laser your spots, which sounds quite daunting but has amazing results,” the 19-year-old shares.

Now that Law has left school, she is determined to drive sustainability and explore more ethical practises in the fashion and beauty industries. “If you look at the traditional garments worn by Asian dynasties centuries ago, you could already see such a variety of amazing shades and intensity in the colors, long before factories were a thing,” she says. “Even before that, people have always used things like berries as blush or lipstick, so why are we’re reverting back to chemicals so much now?”

Here, we speak to the model about her go-to beauty products, how a school essay helped cement her focus on sustainability and the future of beauty.

What’s your earliest beauty related memory?

Iris Law: I would watch my mum use this red Chanel lipstick and go over her beauty mark with a kohl pencil in the mirror. Fascinated, I’d move to the sink and sometimes she’d put some makeup on me.

The first beauty product you applied?

Iris Law: My grandma would buy me magazines with little lipstick palettes. In Mizz magazine, I distinctly remember them being filled with jelly purple lip balms which I’d messily slather onto my lips.

What are you currently working on at the moment?

Iris Law: I’ve just finished school so I’m currently focusing on collaborating and exploring fashion and beauty projects, with a focus on sustainability. In my last year of school, I wrote an essay answering the question: is it viable to make luxury fashion ethical? Ever since then, I’ve been concocting my own natural dyes and exploring the infinite ways the fashion and beauty industry can make a shift into more ethical and sustainable practices.

I also model, which has become a platform and opportunity for me to speak out on these practices. The fact that I can meet and work with such creative artists and designers is such a great experience, allowing me to interact with them directly about the issues I care most about.

So what did you discover researching this essay? How do you see sustainability manifesting itself in the beauty industry? 

Iris Law: If you look at the traditional garments worn by Asian dynasties centuries ago, you could already see such a variety of amazing shades and intensity in the colours, long before factories were a thing. Even before that, people have always used things like berries as blush or lipstick, so why are we’re reverting back to chemicals so much now? What I thought was most important to expand on in my essay wasn’t the possibility of more ethical practises, but the viability so that we can understand how and why companies can transition more fairly into them. At such a crucial moment in time, it is imperative for brands to make these changes and sacrifices if they haven’t already. Additionally, I believe taxes and legislation should be put into place so that change can be effectively made and to spearhead ethically based campaigns.

Describe your beauty aesthetic in three words.

Iris Law: Sunburn. Fresh. Uncomplicated.

You have one minute to get dolled up or ready for bed, what do you do/use? 

Iris Law: This is how long I usually spend on my make-up during the week! I’ll spray some rose toner, pat some lipstick onto my lips and cheeks, and sometimes use some balm to brush up my brows. I only use concealer and foundation if I’m doing a full face as they kind of mask your facial definition and radiance, which you have to compensate for with extra products. To get unready, I’m quite the germaphobe so I’ll wipe down my face with witch hazel, spray some Caudalie mist and massage some 001 Skincare London moisturiser into my skin.

What do you wish to convey in the beauty looks you create?

Iris Law: I like to focus on making my skin look as clean and perfect as possible, most importantly, because I struggled with acne for so many years. On top of this, I like to play around with drawn-on lashes, which make me looks more playful, still keeping the emphasis on the glow and radiance of the skin.

Do you believe in seasonal skincare or sticking to staples? 

Iris Law: I’ve had cystic acne so the way I approach skincare has definitely evolved. Seeing my skin change and having so many different doctors tell me different things, I feel that it’s best to go natural and be consistent intuitively. It’s not about having a 15 step facial routine but a select three or four steps that adjust to the seasons. I use more oil in the winter, which I’ll mix with moisturiser, and I use a Chanel overnight face mask in summer which just melts into your skin. 

What’s your favourite smell and why?

Iris Law: Diptyque candles, as they remind me of home. My mum always has one lit around the house and the smell feels so homely and comforting.

“I find it baffling that people with acne still struggle to find products that work with their skin and it’s practically impossible to mask it. I find the cystic acne treatments currently available too harmful and drastic, as they can cause mood swings and depression too. Ideally, I’d love to invent a scanner that could detect the root of the problem” – Iris Law

Weirdest treatment you’ve tried?

Iris Law: I tried facial acupuncture recently which was super effective and works by inducing the body to create white blood cells to heal your acne-prone areas. The woman who performed the acupuncture also taught me how important it is to keep the face moisturised, rather than drying it out when you do break out. I’d also recommend this facial I had where they electrocute and laser your spots, which sounds quite daunting but has amazing results.

Which fictional character do you most relate to and why?

Iris Law: Ponyo because of how round and dewy she is: she literally lives in a bubble.

It’s the year 2100. You’re the owner of the largest beauty tech company in the world, what product or treatment will you dedicate your resources trying to invent?

Iris Law: Anything to do with acne really, I find it baffling that people with acne still struggle to find products that work with their skin and it’s practically impossible to mask it. I find the cystic acne treatments currently available too harmful and drastic, as they can cause mood swings and depression too. Ideally, I’d love to invent a scanner that could detect the root of the problem, and it would be great to put more standardised ways of diagnosing skin problems into place. 

What is the future of beauty?

Iris Law: The way we use and promote make-up will continue to become even more inclusive and non-judgemental, shifting our common perception of make-up from a means of hiding or concealing, to what it truly is – a means of expression and confidence. We’ll get to choose how we wish to look, whether it’s within the traditional canons of beauty or not.

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