Model and body positvitiy activist Charli Howard is a self-confessed beauty junkie who admits she'll test anything she can get her hands on. Here's what she uses on repeat
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Charli Howard, 30, is the model turned body activist and writer who launched beauty brand Squish Beauty in 2019, unleashing a range of cute under eye masks and spot stickers on the world.
Charli has been open about her mental health and body issues in the past, talking candidly about her struggles with eating disorders and body confidence issues that plagued her when she was working in the modelling industry, citing this as what drove her to become part of the body positivity movement. “I am a big supporter of body positivity and body neutrality, encouraging women to love the skin they’re in and reclaim the flaws they were taught to hate,” she says.
A self-confessed ‘beauty junkie’ Charli tells us: "I’m a little vain and will literally test and try anything I can get my hands on" so we had seriously high expectations for her skincare and makeup picks – it’s fair to say we weren’t disappointed!
My typical workday
“Every day is different which I love. I was never good in an office environment and love being able to do what I want, when I want. If I’m not shooting, the majority of my days are spent on my phone, answering emails, sorting things out for Squish or taking meetings. Luckily, because most of my work is over email, I can get work done while I’m out and about so it doesn’t feel like a chore.
"I'm often working on campaigns, such as Colgate’s #PoutFree portraits campaign, where I coached competition winners on how to smile confidently. I wanted them to let go of all inhibitions and just enjoy themselves. I was shocked to read Colgate's research that nearly a third of us feel more self-conscious in front of the camera since the start of the pandemic, so I love being involved in campaigns where my advice can really make a difference.
“I live in London and love going to new restaurants, so the weekend is the perfect opportunity to try them. I’m desperate to visit the new Ava Mario Italian restaurant in Covent Garden!
My beauty indulgence
“Each month I go to HHSkin in Mayfair for a signature facial [which combines lymphatic drainage, exfoliation, AHA/BHA peel, extractions, a hydrating serum infusion, a customised jelly or sheet mask and LED light therapy ]. It has drastically improved my acne scarring and leaves me glowing.
Wellness from the inside
“I believe you feel your best with a routine, especially when you’re freelance like I am. During the week, I try to be in bed by around 10 pm. I fast walk every day – I used to run but it really damaged my lower back, and I heard fast walking was one of the healthiest ways of exercising anyway. I believe in everything in moderation – a takeaway or two a week won’t kill you.
MORE GLOSS: Clever ways to make your daily walk way more interesting
My best advice
“It sounds cringe, but I believe beauty comes from the inside and setting positive intentions for the day can really change your mood. Not caring about what other people think can really give you confidence.
My 14 beauty and wellbeing essentials
Glossier You Eau de Parfum, £45
“I’m on my eighth bottle of this. I’ve lost count of the number of people who comment on how good it smells - especially Uber drivers, for some reason.”
IT Cosmetics Your Skin But Better CC Cream SPF 50, £26
“I wear this every day and it gives light coverage, though you can build it up for more coverage. It photographs so well, literally blurring everything out. The dermatologist Teresa Tarmey told me to wear factor 50 when I was about 20 and I’ve followed her advice ever since.”
Colgate Max White Ultimate Renewal Toothpaste, £10
“I had people commenting on how white my teeth were after just two uses."
Nette Spring 1998 Candle, £60
“I’m obsessed with candles. They’re so relaxing and I love how these look in my room. My favourite scent right now is Spring 1998."
Elizabeth Arden 8 Hour Cream Skin Protectant, £28
“This is in every makeup artist’s kit and for good reason. Some people hate the smell but I absolutely love it. If I’m having a rough skin day, I’ll put it all over my face and wear it as an overnight mask.”
“My friend once told me that she had a massage with crystals on the soles of her feet and just burst out crying. Since then I’ve really looked into the healing powers of crystals and keep some in my room and in my handbag - they bring me so much comfort."
MORE GLOSS: The 10 best crystal for beginners
Appointments at Josh Wood Colour, poa
“I’ve been having my hair done at Josh Wood in Holland Park for a few years now. No one else comes close, especially colour-wise. (My tip: go to Danielle for colour!)”Book an appointment
Squish Flower Power Acne Patches, £18 for 20
“These are the best-sellers from my brand Squish and are designed to take the embarrassment out of acne. I wanted to create something that was cute but that got the job done. (Also, they’re biodegradable and the crystal is made from glass!)"
MORE GLOSS: Spot stickers to take down the angriest of blemishes
Drunk Elephant Sweet Pitti Deodorant Cream, £13
“I use this every day and as far as natural deodorants go, it actually works. It smells absolutely delicious and contains no nasties.”
Victoria Beckham by Augustinus Bader Cell Rejuvenating Power Serum, £180
“I start off my day by mixing this with the Barbara Sturm The Good C Vitamin C Serum , £110, to hydrate my skin.”
Victoria Beckham Future Lash Mascara
, £26, and Lip Definer, £20
“I like to keep my makeup light and wear these, with my CC cream, every single day.”
Charli Howard is working in collaboration with Colgate on the #PoutFree campaign