Oh to be a royal. Sure, you have to put up with the eyes of the world upon you, but, the perks! The castles! The foreign getaways! Let’s be honest, HRH know how to summer in style. But aside from the yachts and the bottles of champagne, the real question heading into summer is, where do we find a suncream that’s fit for a bona fide princess?
One brand who can legit step forward on this last point, is Lancaster Beauty who have won the approval of not one, but two royal fans throughout its glamorous history (that we know of).
A bit of background. Established in Monaco in 1946, the brand launched at a time when women were beginning to care for themselves and their skin again after the rationing of the war.
Lancaster’s then-trailblazing approach to creating a regime of skin-perfecting products slipped seamlessly into the beauty arsenals of leading celebrities, including Hollywood darling and Monaco’s most famous resident, Princess Grace Kelly, who became one of the brands most enthusiastic supporters.
Of course, you don’t become the official “Appointed Supplier to Her Serene Highness Grace of Monaco” (as Lancaster did in 1970), for nothing. It took a bit of elbow grease and some hefty pioneering to win the royal stamp of approval. In fact, Lancaster’s legacy of “getting there first” is what helped to establish its position as a skincare leader. (The brand was the first to introduce now-hero ingredient, retinol, into its skincare line-up in 1976. Before, it had only really been used by chemists for pharmaceuticals).
Lancaster’s biggest success to this day, however, remains it’s forward-thinking approach to sun care which was established in contrast to the damaging tanning oils that prevailed at the time. It helped to cement the modern sun care market, catering to the growing desire for bronzed torsos and sun-kissed limbs – but safely.
The brand introduced a complete sun care range (which went on to become the favourite of Princess Grace). The range prepped skin before sun exposure (priming skin to be more receptive to tanning), protected it during (to ensure tans’ remained damage-free) and nourished it after (to help us hold onto sunkissed skin for longer). As for some extra bronzing action, the brand introduced “sans soleil” and “visage bronze” (both early forms of fake tan) to warm up skin without the need to sit in the sun. By the mid 1970s it had become synonymous with hazy trips to the french riviera, luxury travel and days spent sunbathing on the back of boats – thereby solidifying its status as the sun care of the elite.
Its cult Tan Maximizer, £15 – a silky feeling aftersun that extends your holiday tan by as much as a month after you get home – remains the brand’s best-selling formula. Indeed, it regularly earns five star reviews on account of its melanin enhancing tan activator complex, which effectively helps to boost your tan even after you’ve left paradise.
Today, it’s said to be a firm favourite of The Duchess of Cambridge.
Which makes this delicious tan enhancer a truly princess-approved after sun. Well, if it’s good enough for Kate…