We don’t ever really think about the logistics of beauty, do we? Like how our lipsticks get from one end of the country to another, or even from one country to another. You buy a beauty product on, say QVC, and think no more about it until it arrives at the door. But, behind the scenes, you’d get nothing without what’s known as ‘distribution’.

I’ve been to one of the UK’s biggest beauty distribution centres and the photograph above is just a fraction of a warehouse the size of an aircraft hangar. Every single row, shelf and box is filled with beauty products.

And it goes up to the ceiling.

Speaking of ceilings – this is the fan ceiling for temperature control. It is actually called The Big Ass Fan, and they’ve never been able to set it higher than Level 3 because at its full setting it would quite literally blow the roof off. Beauty products have to be kept at a certain temperature to maintain quality.

This is the Sterile Room. It’s completely sealed off from the rest of the warehouse; anyone going in has to be hair-netted up, disinfected and with their shoes removed so that no contamination can get in. Some brands insist that their products are packed in a sterile environment. 

Nobody likes the styrofoam squiggly things that are standard in packaging to stop your products getting damaged en route. But, imagine having to fill boxes with them – they’re so… flighty! So, they are kept in this huge sock thing and when a box is ready, you release the cap at the bottom bit and the squiggles drop into the box. Simples!

Outside in the yard, sea-containers waiting to be unpacked. They’ve come straight from the docks.

And finally, here’s me having a go on one of those go-up-and-down-things doing a bit of picking and packing myself. Check me out in my high vis!