20 June 2009

S.O.P.H.I.E - Stamp Out Prejudice and Hatred and Intolerance Everywhere

It is my personal belief that whilst it's OK to enjoy the successes that creating a critically and comercially acclaimed cosmetic brand brings, it is important for companies [not just fashion and beauty] to use their exposure to promote worthwhile causes and charities. So much has gone into creating Illamasqua as a brand that champions empowerment, experimentation, individuality and tolerance that you have to truly believe in the values of Illamasqua as much as the product for the brand to realise it's full potential. To highlight what I mean about values, I would like to tell you about Sophie Lancaster:

Sophie Lancaster, a 20 year old gap year student and her 21 year old student boyfriend Robert Maltby were walking through a park in Lancashire, UK in the early hours of August 11th 2007, when a group of youths attacked them without provocation. The severity of the attack was such that both Sophie and Robert's injuries left them in a coma. After two weeks, Robert showed signs of improvement but it became clear that Sophie's injuries were such that her family took the overwhelmingly tough and courageous decision to switch off her life support machine and she died.

During the subsequent trial, the judge labelled the attack as "feral thuggery" and remarked that the behaviour of the attackers "degrades humanity itself."
It is widely recognised that the attack on Sophie and Robert was provoked simply for their belonging to a different subculture. As the prosecution team at the trial of the murder acknowledged; “Sophie and Robert were singled out not for anything they had said or done, but because they looked and dressed differently."

Sophie’s Mother, Sylvia Lancaster, has since set up the Sophie Lancaster Foundation a charity that works to raise awareness of social prejudice and work towards a more liberal, less aggressive society. Illamasqua is a proud sponsor of this charity and we even have a black Medium Pencil called Sophie in her memory. This Medium Pencil in 'Sophie' is our best selling product - a rich inky black pencil that is super-blendable and the type of pencil that is irresistably strong and intense on the waterline. £3 of the selling price goes straight to the charity - I will find out how much we have raised so far and let you all know.

We also sell S.O.P.H.I.E wristbands for £2 [all proceeds go to the charity] so next time you place your Illamasqua order online, be sure to pick up one of these and show your support for an extremely brilliant charity.

Lazula80 wrote a wonderful heartfelt post about Sophie recently and I'd like to thank her for inspiring this post. Click here to read it.
Check out the myspace page for the charity here.


  1. My housemate Alex was one of Sophie's close friends, I will let her friends know about your support as I'm sure they will be thankful to you. It's such an important and worthwhile charity and your help towards supporting it is great to see. I'm sure Sophie would be honored by your kindness :-)

    RIP Sophie.


  2. Hello Cat

    Thanks for your lovely message, I'm so glad you got to read the post and we are honoured to support the charity.

    Alex x

  3. SOPHIE tragedy makes fell so sad…
    Really!!! How can people, young people do things like that? No reason, no motif, no nothing… one young life lost and so many destroyed for nothing… a stupid moment.
    Hope this money helps the SOPHIE Foundation doing a great work and more important remembers us all that life can change in a second.
    Peace and respect to all.

  4. I remember so clearly when this happened. You know how sometimes certain news stories just stick with you? I remember following it and how it was such a sick and disturbing crime. It's really good to see Illamasqua supporting the charity and hope it's something they will continue to do for many years to come.
    Well done Illamasqua for supporting such a worthy charity, I am sure Sophie would be very honored in what you have done :)

  5. Thankyou for mentioning my post, I really do feel strongly that this tragic event must not be forgotten. Once again I would like to say how amazing I think it is that Illamasqua support this amazing cause.

    We are all who we are, we should all be able to express ourselves as we want to without fear of being attacked or even singled out for being different. Sophie's mother has fought endlessly to try and change laws, she is an amazing fighter and if there is anything at all I can do to help just shout.

    I now buy the Sophie pencil for everyone's birthday! :D

    I never knew Sophie but I can see what a beautiful soul she had, may her memory live on.

  6. I remember this disgusting crime as if it was yesterday - every once in a while things like this will happen which make you realise that there are certain humans who are an evolutionary step behind the rest of civilisation. There is nothng that can be done to replace Sophie or make up for her sad and tragic loss, but well done to Illamasqua for paying tribute to her memory in such a fitting way.


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