I know LUSH is a favourite amongst my fellow bloggers so I'm taking a huge risk in making this post. I've made quite a few friends in the blogging community of late and I know a lot of them are LUSH addicts. I'm sure one of them even works in LUSH (sorry!)
Why do I hate LUSH so much? Do I really hate LUSH?! How could I possibly hate LUSH?!?
Well... read on to find out!
1. The smell.
I used to work in a store called Wax Lyrical which sold candles. I would finish every shift with a headache because of the nasal assault unleashed upon me every time I went to work. The myriad of smells vying for dominance was simply migraine inducing. Vanilla, lavender, cedarwood, lemon, rosemary, lavender, pine, lavender (trust me, lavender scents were BIG in the late 90s)... there were so many scents that just walking past the store was enough to make my eyes water. LUSH is the same. Too many different scents, all very sickly, all competing with each other in a small space. LUSH gives me an instant headache because of the smell.
2. The stupidly named products.
Like Benefit, LUSH has some really silly names for their creations. The names are cute, kitsch and annoying. Silly product names include (but are definitely not limited to): Dragon's Egg, Granny Takes a Dip, Honey I Washed the Kids, No Doubt, Daddy-O, I Love Juicy, Love Lettuce, The Sacred Truth and None of your Beeswax. As you can see, it's really easy to tell what these products are. Not. Yeah, I'm probably being a little harsh and I know people find these names endearing and fun, but I'm clearly boring and lack any real pleasure in life (that's not true, but I can sense some of you thinking that..!)
3. The ingredients.
I love LUSH's ethics - against animal testing, ethical buying, 100% vegetarian, all handmade... but, and this is a big BUT, their products still contain sodium lauryl sulfate (SLS) which even the company themselves have acknowledged can be a skin irritant. LUSH state on their website "we have recently begun to replace sodium lauryl sulfate with a milder surfactant, sodium coco-sulfate. This new material is kinder to the scalp, but still cleans the hair effectively." So, they know it can be a little harsh but it's still in a lot of their products. You can read more about SLS here.
Many LUSH products also contain parabens. Parabens are used as preservatives. Again, LUSH acknowledge that there is a lot of controversy surrounding parabens but claim "scare-mongering ‘studies’ into their potentially negative effects have now been widely debunked." So why then do they go on to state that a lot of their products don't have them in? "We formulate our products without preservatives wherever possible. Many Lush products are completely free of preservatives and are formulated to be self-preserving." So which is it LUSH? If parabens are nothing to worry about why do you try not to use them?
Personally I have no issue with SLS or parabens - I've got products that have them in and products that don't. The things that I object to is that LUSH claims to be all these amazing things (ethical, cruelty free etc.) but they're still using outdated and questionable ingredients in some of their products.
4. The hard sell.
LUSH is not a store that you're allowed to browse. Oh no. The second you enter you're jumped on by an eager sales assistant (do they work on commission?!) and forced to have face masks applied to your hands, creams rubbed into your elbows and to witness yet another colourful bath bomb crumble in water to reveal that WOW, it has glitter inside! (Who wants to bathe in glitter?!) Even when you think you've managed to avoid being harassed, a sales assistant will accost you from behind a tower of soap bars to ask if you've tried their new face cream / lip scrub / dusting powder. If you decide to buy something you're almost always guilt tripped into buying their charity pot which yeah, is for a good cause, but do you really need another mini hand cream? I'd rather just give them £1 to leave me alone in the first place.
If they try to sell me a bath bomb one more time I'm going to ram someone's face into the sink (I jest, of course...) I don't even have a bath but they seem to think I'm lying when I tell them this. Only last week a sales assistant asked me why I don't have a bath and seemed astounded that I had it removed in place of a walk in shower. He was probably miffed he'd wasted a whole Space Girl bath bomb on me.
5. Santa's Lip Scrub
Despite not being a fan of LUSH I can honestly say that their Mint Julips and Bubblegum lip scrubs are amazing and I use them at least four times a week to keep my lips smooth. I was excited to see a new release from them in the form of Santa's Lip Scrub. What a disappointment! Not only does it taste nothing like that advertised cola (it contains extracts of cherries and dates) but the texture is waxy and it stains my lips and the area around my mouth when I use it. It also tastes awful and synthetic, unlike the others. The other scrubs are lovely and you can really feel them sloughing away the dead skin (yum!) but Santa's Lip Scrub is just, to put it mildly, pants. I also hate the smell of beauty blogger favourite 'Snow Fairy'. Soz.
To summarise, LUSH gives me a headache, the names are infuriating, the ingredients aren't as 'natural' and harmless as they'd lead you to believe and the sales assistants are, quite frankly, militant.
I hope this tongue in cheek look at LUSH has entertained rather than infuriated. I can understand why people love LUSH, I really can. In an ideal world I would love it too but for some reason the whole brand just narks me.
Let me hear your LUSH defence in the comments, I'm sure you've got a few choice words for me...