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Trend on trial special: MP Sarah Champion tests this season's beauty looks

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Shadow minister for preventing abuse and domestic violence, and Labour MP for Rotherham, Sarah Champion tests beauty’s latest looks

“Can you be a feminist and be interested in make-up? Of course. For me, beauty is about celebrating yourself, recognising who you are and not compromising that for anyone. 

When I was about 15, there was a girl who always got on the school bus wearing full make-up but one day, she turned up without any on. Everyone just gasped. That’s when I realised the power it has to change you completely.

I never wore much make-up in my former job as the chief executive of a children’s hospice but since becoming an MP, I feel a duty to present myself as the best I can be. If you’re trying to convey a message and people are thinking, ‘Oh my god, she looks so tired’, that’s what they’ll remember. 

Being an MP often involves impromptu television appearances, which is why if you go to the ladies’ toilets at the Houses of Parliament, you’ll find make-up and perfume scattered all over the place. I had a bit of a freak-out after watching myself on TV a while ago – I was rivalling Gordon Ramsay in the wrinkle department and even considered botox. But I decided against it and now I quite like the wrinkles around my eyes. I feel almost proud of them.

My look is quite functional, so trying out this season’s beauty trends (right) was a first, but it’s important to me to celebrate my femininity. As a proud female MP, I like to show that you don’t have to look like a man to do this job. Scratch that, you don’t have to be a man to be an MP!”


Sarah Champion

Sarah’s daily look

“I tend to wear a nude lip gloss and mascara for work. Less is definitely more. I try to look professional without letting the make-up dominate as I don’t want anything about me to detract from my role in representing my constituents.”


Sarah Champion

360-degree eyeliner

“This is a really sexy look and I feel quite sultry wearing it, but in the photos it shrinks my eyes. Tracing kohl around the entire eye may well be a big trend, but this eyeliner would be more flattering on me with a feline flick, I think.”


Sarah Champion

Pillar-box red lips

“I’ve seen lots of women rocking bold red lipstick recently and I love it. But I keep getting it on my teeth and I’m worried about it bleeding out. I might have worn it 20 years ago but I don’t think I would now. It’s a great look but perhaps not for work.”


Sarah Champion

Extreme side-parting

“Apparently, this smooth side-parted style was a key look on this season’s catwalks, but I’ve never in my life had my hair straightened. I just don’t feel like me at all. I feel like I’ve been put in a little box – my hair has been caged.”


My 2016 pledge to women

“I will be addressing the fact that abuse – physical, sexual and psychological – mainly affects women and girls. On 19 January, I’ll be launching Dare2Care.org.uk, which provides tools to stop the normalisation of violence. Unless we tackle the root causes, we will never prevent abuse occurring.”


With thanks to: BoothNation

To read this week's issue of Stylist, download from app.stylist.co.uk

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