[purchase] I went to the Cute exhibition at Somerset House last week with my friend, Carolyn, for a look at all things Kawaii. Absolute heaven for someone like me who loves all of the cute and kawaii things including Hello Kitty. Dora has a little Hello Kitty tag on her collar :-). That said, the exhibition isn’t as good as it should have been – a lot of unused space or actually, quite mystifying spaces – a huge pink room with beanbags in it and nothing else does not replicate a girl’s bedroom. It’s as though whoever put it together doesn’t understand the origins of the brand (San Rio, owners of HK) and how its has transformed from its Japanese roots to cross cultures. It’s not exclusively Hello Kitty – there are many cultural components of Kawaii and I really didn’t take anything home that I didn’t already know but I did buy one thing from the gift shop – a Moomin Zero Waste Paper Lip Balm.
The balm itself is strawberry flavoured and actually very nice to taste. It’s vegan, plastic free, moisturising, palm oil free (good – more brands should be) and so on …. but, in terms of the user experience, it’s a little awkward. For a start, it’s push up – I spent quite some time trying to wind the balm up until the penny dropped. That’s all well and good – it did indeed push up but then couldn’t push down again because there’s no mechanic to allow it to do so. The push up isn’t very controllable – it requires a bit of heft which in turn leads to an excess amount of balm appearing at the top. It’s giving me insight into why it’s so hard to make lip products in general plastic free.
I love the fact that there isn’t any plastic to it in theory but in use, not so much. It’s just a little bit clunky although the balm itself is perfectly good. I’d rather have had it in a glass jar though. If you’re a Moomin fan, you can buy this balm HERE for £4.95, considerably more cheaply than at Somerset House!
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