Now, it's come to my attention that it is CHRISTMAS TIME and that possibly, I am not the easiest person in the world to buy for (I don't believe this is true FYI, I'm a massive, massive fan of stuff and welcome it in all its many guises) and so I thought I'd throw a few last minute suggestions out there. In case you're anywhere near a department store and feeling generous...
As I might have mentioned, I'd be all over the MAC holiday collections, especially the Little Darlings Pink Lipglass and Lusterglass set. Too pretty and only £18.79 which is practically free. And while you're on the counter, you might as well get me the Adoring Carmine basic brush set. Pretty.
While you're hovering around the make up counter, you could pop over to Bobbi Brown and grab me the eye and lip palette that I've been lusting after. I'm not normally a one for big palettes, they just take up too much room but I sort of love this one a little bit. Failing that, I'll take the lipgloss trio. I like Bobbi's lipglosses anyway but these come in a super cute little purse that I think might just complete my life. Not to overdo it or anything.
That should about do it for pretty things, now how's about some sweet smelling treats. My beloved Bliss Spa is always a good go-to location for presents. Who wouldn't be delighted to open up a Youth as We Know It gift set? Or some delicious Lemon+Sage goodies? I'm almost all out of body scrub. Just so you know. Just so you know.
And if you just so happen to be in the states between now and Thursday (you don't know, do you?) I'm almost all out of my Harajuku Lovers perfumes. I'll just buy the mini bottles, she says, fingering the full sizes in Sephora. When do I ever use a full bottle of perfume? And besides, they're so pretty! Well, colour me stupid because I've been obsesso girl with these bad boys since I picked them up in October and now I need a new G and Music and quite frankly, all the others because they're so damn pretty.
Okay, so I'm not going to be about too much over Christmas - there is a lot of drinking, eating, boy kissing, sleeping and cat-staring-out contests to contend with as well as a small matter of a second book to finish. I hope you won't hold it against me and of course if I hear about any amazing sales or prods, I'll be online in a heartbeat.
BeautyLover x x x
Monday, 22 December 2008
Now, it's come to my attention that it is CHRISTMAS TIME and that possibly, I am not the easiest person in the world to buy for (I don't believe this is true FYI, I'm a massive, massive fan of stuff and welcome it in all its many guises) and so I thought I'd throw a few last minute suggestions out there. In case you're anywhere near a department store and feeling generous...
Thursday, 18 December 2008
I feel like shat.
Sorry, I'm just feeling really really rubbish.
Luckily, I'm not looking as shiteous as I feel (I hope) thanks to a speedy but heavy duty repair job this morning...
If you know you're going to look a little bit crapola, try and drink lots of water before bed, ALWAYS take off your make up and ALWAYS ALWAYS moisturise. I find a good thick slick of Beauty Flash Balm helps and come morning, a blast of Liz Earle Brightening Mask or Bliss Triple Oxygen Energising Mask. This morning was heavy duty, so it was the Bliss bad boy...
As for the base. There's no point going for a make up mask, too much make up is almost worse than none at all. If your skin can take it, just go for tinted moisturiser (I LOVE the Creme de la Mer plus it's a relatively cheap way to buy into the brand), a cream blusher like Ruby & Millie's face glosses or a cheek stain like Benetint. Then add liberal amounts of Touche Eclat and a healthy highlighter or brightening powder (Dandelion or Georgia depending on your skintone) to fake that first flush of health.
Mascara is a must, curl those lashes too, open eyes are imperative! I find a light wash of sparkly shadow, like Stila's Cloud really helps.
Lips need to be soft and smooth - just go with a tinted balm unless you're always a lipstick wearer. Whatever happens, I don't want to see post-office party snog chapping.
Or beard rash...
Wednesday, 17 December 2008
It's the most wonderful time of the year... no, not just Christmas but Christmas party time!
But as well as the opportunity to get ratted and embarrass yourself in front of all your colleagues, Christmas party time also presents a major desk to dance floor beauty dilemma. Sometimes it's just not possible to do a new full face of slap. My office party (sigh) has moved from a really rather fab Soho club in 2007 to our reception in 2008. This is not only massively disappointing but also a major slap issue. You can't get 500 girls in the toilets tarting up at once (no matter what Boots might want you to believe) so you're left with the option of adding to what you've got.
I am going to TRY and keep it simple.
First things first, freshen up your base. Taking off your foundation and starting again is a complete arse, so go for a bit of a spritz - try the Trilogy Hydrating Mist - and then add a sweep of a pinky or peachy blusher, whatever looks most natural and don't forget the Touche Eclat for under eye shadows...
Once your eyes are looking fresher, add some sparkle. I'm so excited that the MyFace range has launched in time for Christmas because quite frankly the Eye Touch eyeshadow trios make Christmas party make up embarrassingly easy. I love Morococo and Band of Gold for browns and golds and Bell Bottom Blues for something a bit more OTT.
Go with the lightest colour as an all over base for the day, then add the darker colour into your upper and lower lash lines and socket line to add definition and ramp up the drama with the sparkly, sparkly wonderful blingtone shade in the middle. I bloody love this stuff. If you're feeling really dramatic, add a little smudge of eyeliner into your lash line and then slap on several thousand coats of mascara. I love the MyFace mascara too but Maybelline Colossal Volum' and Rimmel's Sexy Curves are also really good at the moment.
If lips are more your thing, there's only one place I'm prepared to go for a party pout - MAC. I will be slapping on layer after layer after layer of Dazzle Glass for a sexy sparkly sheen. They're usually limited edition and not the easiest things to lay your hands on so you could always cheat with a Lustre Glass or Lip Glass and add a pop of shimmer with a MAC glitter pigment. Gorgeous. Alternatively, Stila lipglazes and Lancome's Juicy Tubes are always a great option for a party, especially the limited edition Cinnamon Soho one that is out now or the sexy Juicy Black packaging. Gorgeous.
If you really want to do a classic red lip (it is Christmas after all) I heart Clinique's Red-y-to-Wear High Impact Lipstick and Ready or Not liner. I actually rocked this to a Christmas party on Saturday for the first time EVER in red lips and I loved it. Especially when I added a slick of Dazzle Glass in Love Alert but that's not one for the traditionalists. Just for those of us wearing a Mariah Carey Mrs Santa dress.
Also do not try and combine the red lip with the dramatic eye for a work party. You will look like the office bike. Or tranny. I'm not sure which is worse.
And last but not least, add a bit of highlighter, either shimmer or sparkle (just don't go OTT PLEASE). Obviously High Beam is the old classic but not that portable so maybe try a touch of MAC's Strobe Cream. It's a classic for a reason...
Monday, 15 December 2008
Hands up, who doesn't love a product that you can't actually pronounce?
No, diatomamus isn't a newly discovered kind of dinosaur but in fact a really rather wonderful face masque from B Kamins. I've been having a nightmare with my skin lately, seriously, it's just crappy. Dry, then irritated, then grey, then papery, then irritated again. And all in time for the prime boy kissing party season. Mew. Luckily, I have a great big jar of this bad boy on my bathroom shelf which is perfect for sorting me out on dry and papery front.
Aside from it drying on your skin a bit like the ace Body Shop blue face mask I had as a teenager (What was that called?) and it sounding like a dinosaur, I love this mask because:
a) it helps my skin look smoother and more hydrated.
b) it has diatomaceous earth in it. This sounds like it might be magical.
c) it has Bio-Maple compound and I like Maple Syrup on my pancakes. Therefore, I like this.
I am easily pleased.
You too can be easily pleased at HQhair... You don't even need to be able to say it if you're buying online. Brillbags.
I think this might be all kinds of awesome as a post-party pick me up and given the drastic three nighter I've just pulled, only to be followed by nights out every night from tomorrow until CHRISTMAS, I think I might need it.
Friday, 12 December 2008
I have a huge weekend coming up (Christmas starts here people!) parties on Friday, Saturday and Sunday night and so my daytime plans amount to little more than rolling out of bed and onto the sofa, stopping only to kick the tin of Roses across the floor and make a giant mug of tea.
At some point there will be bathing and muchos make up application so I at least look human at each event but mostly there will very little activity.
There might be a bit of toenail painting and even a wee Elemis Pro-Collagen Quartz Lift mask to soothe my cream crackered skin but aside from that... not so much.
Which is why I'm so very excited about the Elemis Today's Special Value item that will be appearing on QVC on Sunday. I'm not proud of my QVC addiction but it makes the best hangover telly in the world and apparently, this gift set is going to be the best thing since forever. I don't know exactly what's in it (very cloak and dagger) but it's a six piece Pro-Collagen and Frangipani set and since I love both of those ranges, I'm super keen to find out what's on offer. And, you know, they'll probably make good Christmas presents. If you can bear to part with them.
The Elemis show airs at 12am, 1 am, 4am, 7am, 8am, 11am, 2pm, 5pm, 8pm and 11pm on Sunday and if you can't even bear to turn the TV on (hangovers are terrible) you can order from the QVC website.
I'm guessing I might see the 2pm and for shame, the 4am.
Join me on my sofa of shame...
Thursday, 11 December 2008
I can't make my computer write Mac properly, you know, with the little spacer dots in the middle? Sorry Mac.
Anyways, I know I already talked about them this week but OH MY, I have to tell you about the Spring/Summer 09 Trends presentation I was lucky enough to attend. Seriously, it might have been my Best Day Ever. I don't want to give too much away but trust me when I tell you, you'll be all Mac, all the time in 09. GORGEOUS colours and AMAZING textures, it's all about texture next season dahling.
And if you haven't heard already, Mac has confirmed THE most amazing collaboration EVER as far as I'm concerned. Move over Barbie, forget Heatherette - it's all about HELLO KITTY! Oh yes, it is the most exciting make up event ever in the whole history of the world.
As you can probably tell, I'm a bit excited.
Wednesday, 10 December 2008
The lovely people at The Body Shop are combining two of my favourite things - special offers and Facebook. Isn't that sweet of them?
Between this Friday and Christmas eve you can download their 12 Days of Christmas application which will have a different offer or competition each day! Friday's really rather fabulous offer is half price Satsuma Body Butter, just £6.25. I LOVE Body Shop body butters, they are delicious. I usually go for coconut but satsuma seems appropriately festive.
You can redeem your offer in-store or online, just download the app, get the appropriate codes and Bob's your uncle. Or not as the case may be. I have two uncle Davids but no Bob.
Download the application here to get your calendar and twelve days of offers...
Tuesday, 9 December 2008
I challenge you to find someone who doesn't love MAC make up.
It's just not possible.
And the new MAC store in the Westfield centre has just about pushed me over the edge...
With that in mind, I am begging you to go and buy the new Red, She Said collection. It's gorgeous x one trillion. I've always been smokey eyes over slutty lips but I'm trying to branch out (into lips, not sluttiness) and the lovely people at MAC are really helping out. The new Date Night* and Love Alert Dazzle Glass glosses are absolutely beautiful, all pretty punch of colour and no stickiness. Yum.
I'm also trying out the Dubonnet lipstick, a deepened claret cream that looks terrifying in the tube and when you first apply it but gorgeous if you pat it into your lips to create a stain and top with a slick of balm. Very, 'I'm all bruised from too much kissing'. I'm not though, in case you were wondering. I am, however, open to offers.
*That said, I did wear Date Night on a date recently and apparently, it works because I am all kinds of rubbish at dates and this one was all kinds of lovely. I'm going to try Love Alert next time - does anyone do a gloss called 'let's definitely do kissing'??? Could they???
Friday, 5 December 2008
I'm having a terrible time staying away from Westfield shopping centre. Have you SEEN that bad boy? It's incredible... Sadly, for all its wonder, it isn't making my Christmas shopping any easier. It's just making shopping easier. Which is making me poorer.
Anyway, I have some good Christmas shopping ideas for you from lovely Origins.
Who doesn't love a good candle? No one, that's who. Everyone loves a candle, FACT, and Origins candles are delicious. I love the Ginger collection which is perfect at Christmas time, as a hostess gift, a stocking filler or as a 'I really don't like you that much but it is essential that you see how incredibly tasteful and generous I am' gift for your mother in law or the girl at work that you hate but want to stick it to.
I know, I know but I'm mean so you don't have to be.
And even better, there is free standard delivery on all purchases over £45 on origins.co.uk at the moment. Merry Christmas everyone!
Thursday, 4 December 2008
Man alive I'm having a rough time of it this week and no amount of Origins Peace of Mind is going to make it better.
Ooh, hang on a minute, it has a little bit.
As did that Wispa.
Tuesday, 2 December 2008
One of the main catalysts behind BeautyMecca was my ongoing quest for the perfect mascara. In the last two years, several have turned my head and my credit card, some of the best being Clinique's Lash Power, Prescriptives Lash Envy, Estee Lauder Double Wear but still I'm unsettled. I know, I know, I'm never happy.
Given the masses of cash I've spent on making my eyelashes look purdy this year, I decided to give the high street a go* and I've got to say, I've been really pleasently surprised.
First up is Maybelline's Colossal Voum' Express mascara. Aside from the ugliest packaging of anything ever, it's pretty good. The consistency is more fluid than I usually enjoy but it really does make mt lashes very, very long. And it's 3-4-2 in Superdrug right now so you can get a couple of nail colours and maybe an emergency Dream Matte Mousse (to keep in your desk for pre-party touch ups). I would say it delivers more on length than volume for me and I'm not sure what effect collagen can actually have when painted onto your eyelashes in tiny amounts but it's good. I haven't tested it on a night out yet but I will and will update accordingly.
An even bigger shock has been Rimmel's Sexy Curves mascara. Now, this has really pretty packaging but the most ridiculous name of any mascara ever. You don't mind pulling out the metallic purple tube but who wants people on the tube to see that you're wearing 'Sexy Curves' anything? That said, I sort of love this. The consistency is thicker than the Maybelline mascara and it makes lashes look long, thick and almost fake. There's literally nothing subtle about it but it's great for a night out and it doesn't smudge all day long. I've even been able to top up after work without it flaking or clumping. Seriously, I think it's going to be my party mascara of choice this season. Oh, and the brush looks like a terrifying tiny sex toy but it's amazing for getting right into the inner and outer corners of your eyes.
*I would like to clarify that this has nothing to do with the credit crunch and everything to do with the fact that I have a cold and could only make it as far as Superdrug on the high street this weekend.
Sunday, 30 November 2008
I may or may not have been on Oxford Street yesterday (where I may or may not have been touching the new Marc Jacobs Asa handbag in Selfridges - why don't I have a rich boyfriend?) and so popped into the magical new B Bar I told you all about last week.
As if they weren't doing enough by a) solving all my Christmas present woes and b) doing my make up whilst plying me with booze for just TEN ENGLISH POUNDS, they're also currently running a promotion with one of my favourite musicals ever, Hairspray.From December 4th right through until the end of January, you can buy the delicious Baltimore lip gloss - a shiny, iridescent pink, chock full of yummy moisturisers and housed in one of B's signature sparkly pots - for just 7.35! And if that wasn't enough, while you're in store, you can enter a competition to win two tickets to see Hairspray in the West End along with hotel accommodation and dinner for two.
While you're there, be sure to pick up some Christmas presents. I'll be gifting my girlfriends with B by the bucketload this Christmas, it's perfect for stocking fillers and big presents alike. The new wrapped soaps are just too cute to pass up and I'm obsessing over Cleopatra's Golden Secrets, seven bubble bar balls enrobed in 22ct gold leaf. Dec-a-dant.
Also loving the Ding Dong gift set which is pretty much the ultimate present for any make up fiend. It's rammed with 21 shades of B's eyecreams and glitters, all packed away in a mini red glitter Christmas tree. What's not to love?
And if you can't get to a B store, or can't bear to leave the house in this skanky weather which has given me a cold (grrr) click on www.bnevertoobusytobebeautiful.com and shop to your heart's content!
Wednesday, 26 November 2008
As I may have mentioned, I'm having none of this credit crunch nonsense. There's no point trying to save money by buying cheap, ineffective stuff and then having to spend more money on something to repair the damage done by the rubbish products.
Also, it is pay day so hurrah hurrah.
Great. I have adequately convinced myself - did it work on you? It's a rationale I usually save for handbags but today, I'm using it on the AMAZING Dr Bragi Face and Body Salvation.
I know I've spoken of the wonder of Dr Bragi before, penzyme-schmenzyme, it's witchcraft I tells ya. When I run out, I have a little cry. But what about the rest of my body, I hear you cry? Can my cold, chilled, dried out by central heating limbs benefit from this wonderous serum as much as my pretty, pretty face?
Happily, the answer is now yes. Dr Bragi has introduced a new product into the range, specially designed to hydrate all over the body. Okay, confession time, I really to try to moisturise all over at least before bed, if not morning and evening, so afeared am I of Madonna claws and the like but just lately, I've been so late to bed (have I mentioned I'm writing a book? I have? Oh.) and so late up in a morning that the steps are slipping. No more. The Face and Body Salvation is a hand-dandy spray that is so easy to spritz on, I can even do it with my eyes closed and the results are incredible. After just a couple of days, my shins had a moisturised sheen back (I've been suffering from opaque tights induced paperiness) and my skin was just so soft to the touch. I'll never go back.
I'm pasting in all the wonderful things this spray can do because I couldn't list them without sound like an infomercial. All I can do, is say I would happily hand over £100 for this product and I don't say that often. The bottle is huge and the results are measurable, immediate and long-lasting - what else are you looking for?
You can pick it up at Bliss London*
Soothes dry, itchy scalps and helps to decrease dandruff
Moisturises, lifts, firms, eases sensitive skin, refines, soothes razor burn, helps to prevent ingrown hairs, helps to reduce age spots, helps to reduce the appearance of dark circles
Moisturises, lifts, firms
Moisturises, refines, treats dry cuticles, helps to soothe pain associated with arthritis, helps to reduce age spots
Moisturise, soothes after shaving/waxing and helps to prevent ingrown hairs
Targets dryness and roughness, helps to soothe pain associated with arthritis
Exfoliates, moisturises, brightens and targets roughness, removes pathogens associated with foot discomforts
*Don't forget to pick up one of the intensive masks while you're there - they are LITERALLY the best thing I've ever, ever put on my face.
Tuesday, 25 November 2008
I'm having a terrible time with my skin at the moment - anyone else? I'm not sure if it's the weather, a new moisturiser I've been testing or just general lack of taking care of myself but whatever it is, I look like bum. Happily, the one thing I know that will definitely calm my complexion down is in ready supply at HQHair and Boots.com.
And my bedside table, bathroom shelf and desk drawer.
Trilogy Hydrating Mist Toner is one of those products that you don't really think about until your skin is all irritated and nasty and then, with one magical 'pfft' it's calm, soothed and moisturised. I love that I can spritz and go, without any harsh rubbing at my skin or larping any heavy creams on. I also love that it looks pretty, is chock-full of good girl ingredients (including the amazing Trilogy hero Rosehip oil) and that it smells fresh and clean.
I've also been giving the CoQ10 Booster Capsules a chance and I must say, they do feel very lovely. And I've got a total girl crush on the old school twist-open, single dose packaging.
Yes, I accept that I am very easily pleased.
Boys, take note.
Monday, 24 November 2008
I'm so over the credit crunch. Honestly, I don't want to hear another peep about it.
Unless it encourages people to put more shoes on sale.
With that in mind, today's Christmas gift giving extravaganza is unashamedly luxe - if you can't get Creme de la Mer at Christmas with a clear conscience, when can you?
So your two options are: The Luxury Essentials at £455 or The Connoisseur Collection at £280.
The Luxury Essentials is perfect if you're a Creme first timer. It contains the Moisturiser, the Eye Concentrate and Face Lifting serum, all packaged up in a very pretty box. The Connoisseur Collection is lighter on prods and the pocket, with the Moisturiser and Eye Concentrate. I' m all about eye creams at the moment, can't help but notice the last few months have not been kind on delicate skin, mew. I'm obsessed with the little silver applicator that comes with the Creme eye concentrate. But then I am a big fan of all shiny things...
For family and friends that are reading, I'll be out of my Creme lotion in about a month, a month and a half so this is perfect timing!I would be very happy to receive either of the above, FYI.
Wednesday, 19 November 2008
I'm not a religious person. If you asked me to take you to my church, we would probably pop by Selfridges and worship at the altar of Marc by Marc Jacobs but right now, I believe there is someone looking after me. How else would B Never Too Busy to be Beautiful's B Bar have come into existence?
Okay, I can see you're doubtful. It's just a make up shop, right? WRONG. It is oh so much more. Besides the glory of a shop full of B goodness, once inside this beauty you can get a COCKTAIL and a MAKE-OVER inside thirty minutes. Yes. A COCKTAIL and a MAKE-OVER. So whether you're post-work and pre-date, panicking about looking amazing at the work Christmas party or just shopped out, you can relax with a lovely Flirtini while one of B's top make up artists gives you killer smokey eyes. There are a selection of looks to choose from or you can just ask for what you fancy, I LURVE Fifth Avenue, a sexy Burlesque look but if you want to pretend you always look this good, you could go for the more natural First Date. Just go easy on the Flirtinis. There's even an option for boys, just in case you were foolish enough to take one along with you.
Honestly, I don't think I've been this excited about a concept since the Starbucks toffeenut hot chocolate. Happily for me, this world of wonder is ridiculously close to my church, on Oxford Street, making it ideal for a post-work, pre-worship stop off.
While you're in store, don't forget to try out the perfumes - also gorgeous. I'm having a love affair with Superworld Unknown at the moment. It's very pretty and I like it lots. I can't really explain it though... the lovely people at B reckon it smells like this though.
The smell of candy floss, sherbert fountains, toffee apples and the seaside, yet sophisticated… escapist perfumery really. Clever use of cocoa and vanilla absolute with cassia makes this fragrance really edible without having a single character that you can be labelled with. And a new blend of juniper berry adds a breath of Norwegian fresh air and walking in the hills in summer, a new material made from tonka beans to provide a hint of reassurance. Petigrain and bitter orange mixed with lime, lemon and bergamot create a dizzy fairground ride of top notes. All bouqueted with rose absolute and ylang ylang.
Check out the B website for more info www.bnevertoobusytobebeautiful.com
Tuesday, 18 November 2008
So on occasion, I get sent some pretty random things to review for BeautyMecca that have, at best, a tenuous link to the world of beautification (Fun Betty the hair colour for ladies' mimsy fur, I am talking about you) but I think we have a winner.
Play O is a new lubricant from Durex that is designed to, well, you can imagine what it's designed to do. Apparently, 79% of British women achieved orgasm by using the Play O product but tragically, all it did for me was remind me that I am not getting any...
But my own personal hell aside, we all know that good sex leads to a good complexion (fact) and the need for less blusher. Which would actually be great because right now because I'm almost all out of my Bobbi Brown Blue Raspberry limited edition from last year.
Anyone want to volunteer? 79% are odds I like.
From a BeautyMecca perspective, the bottle is quite cute* and so wouldn't scare people if you forgot to hide it in your secret drawer**
Check out the O Room here
The things I do for this blog. Honestly. My mother reads this...
*(e.g. not a great big blue tube with KY written all over it...)
** (it's not so secret, we alllllllll know about it)
Friday, 14 November 2008
Sigh. Today was supposed to be best friends presents but shockingly, I'm really rather keen on getting my dirty mitts on these myself. Behold, the Holiday collection from Bliss Spa.
I think we all know that there's nowhere else in the whole world I'd rather be than New York City and once safely in New York City, there are few places I'd rather be than on a massage table in Bliss Spa on Broadway. Preferably because I've had a very stressful morning mincing around MoMA with hot boys and then shopping myself silly at Bloomingdales and Bergdorfs.
Since the silly immigration people aren't falling over themselves to let me in the country permanently, I am forced to resort to the Bliss Holiday collection which, thankfully, is fabulous.
All the gift sets are New York themed - from The Big Orange (instead of apple, geddit?) which includes their new Blood Orange and White Pepper scented prods, Scent-tral Park - a collection of three luxe travel-sized body butters (including my Lemon+Sage obsession) and my personal favourite, The Sock-ettes and I Glove New York, this year's softening sock and glamour glove offering.
Did I mention I have a book out next year called I Heart New York? I did? Oh. Okay.
As friend to many (hint) I would be very happy to receive any of these sets (hint hint), but if I was buying for my BFF, I'd probably go for the skincare set, The Youth Group, an introduction to Bliss' really rather fabulous Youth as We Know It range, all tied up in a pretty pink and blue travel bag. For thirty-five knicker, it's a really, really nice gift.
But if you really loved me, I mean, your friend, you'd throw in some Lemon+Sage goodness too.
It is divine.
Go Bliss Spa Crazy at BlissLondon.co.uk
Wednesday, 12 November 2008
Now, I know I get excited easily but this time it's for real.
Behold the most exciting new cosmetics range in forever... MyFace.
Exclusive to Boots, the new range has been put together by some very clever people, including super famous and super fabulous make up artist, Charlotte Tilbury (also annoyingly super beautiful. Grrr.) who had made it ridiculously easy for absolutely anyone in the whole wide world to buy really rather wonderful make up without making any mistakes. It's practically as though Charlotte is making you over every day. Wowsers.
It goes like this - you work out what your skintone is, fair, medium or dark and then select products to match. Really, it's that easy. The products for each skintone are packaged in different colours - white for light, silver for medium and a dark pewter for dark. Very sexy.
What's spectacular about the range is how great the formulations are. The MyMix foundations (I'm light 1) are easily a match for my beloved Prescriptives Custom Blend and the Blingtone eyeshadows are literally amazing. I have not been without mine since I blagged it at the launch. I can't express the joy at the sparkle in these things - it's genuine grown up glam, not little girl glitter. I challenge you to go into Boots, stick your finger in one of these bad boys and come away without buying it.
Below are some of the sickeningly gorgeous models wearing the wonderful slap (yeah, get over it, I actually had to stand near them).
What I don't have is a picture of me after being made over with MyFace. This is for the best because you would cry at how heartbreakingly beautiful* I looked.
It's that good.
*Well, at least the hot boy in the office** was moderately impressed at the time.
**He has since left the country.
Tuesday, 11 November 2008
Sorry for not bringing enough joy into your life recently, I've been uber busy with actual stuff that pays my bills. And actual stuff that doesn't.
Regular service will resume shortly.
Friday, 7 November 2008
I'm really getting into the swing of Christmas now, and that's not just because I've bought two dresses to wear to parties... Oh, three. Actually, four but that one's still a little bit tight. Maybe that's a January dress. Sorry, I'm like a kitten with a ping pong ball at the moment.
Anyhoo, I HEART buying presents for my friends and fam almost as much as I heart buying stuff for myself. I did say almost. One of my favourite people to buy for is Mummy BeautyMecca. She's not all about the beauty stuff because poor Mummy BeautyMecca suffers with all kinds of skin badness so she has to be uber careful. Happily, Elemis has some bee-yoo-tiful prods and gift sets this year that I'm pretty sure she's going to go crazy for. As, I would imagine, would your ma.
Here are my highlights:
This kit includes my super favourite Pro-Collagen prods that will help Mummy BeautyMecca smooth the appearance of wrinkles (not that she has any...)
What's in the bag?
New Pro-Collagen Quartz Lift Mask 15ml
New Pro-Collagen Hand and Nail Cream 20ml
Pro-Collagen Marine Cream 30ml
Pro-Collagen Oxygenating Night Cream 15ml
Cellular Recovery Skin Bliss Capsules 14 caps
And for any trips Mummy BeautyMecca might take next year, she'd need this bad boy...
Dream Journey Traveller
It's actually amazing. Ten perfect pieces of skin and bodycare solutions in a gorgeous travel bag. I am in love.
In said gorgeous bag is:
Pro-Collagen Radiantly Smooth Body Cream 50ml
Pro-Collagen Hand and Nail Cream 20ml
Eyes-Awake Recovery Gel 10ml
Pro-Collagen Marine Cream 15ml
Pro-Collagen Oxygenating Night Cream 15ml
Skin Nourishing Milk
Cellular Recovery Skin Bliss Capsules 14 caps
Papaya Enzyme Peel 15ml
Tri-Enzyme Resurfacing Facial
Did I say I was getting this for Mummy BeautyLover? Because Miss BeautyLover would sort of love this too. For stockists, call 01278 727830 or try elemis.com
Maybe I'll just get two while I'm there...
Thursday, 6 November 2008
Is anyone else actually having to physically throw themselves out of bed in the morning at the moment? I don't know what is wrong with me but honestly, I feel like getting up is literally the cruelest joke on Earth right now. Aside from Claudia Winkleman's washed out lipstick*.
And while this may not seem like a 100% Beauty oriented post, if I don't get up in the morning, the first thing to be sacrificed is washing my hair (not pretty) and the second is eye make up (and since I only just got up, they already look like piss holes in the snow) and so you see how my not being knackered all the time directly affects my beauty regime...
But praise be, someone somewhere likes me and has introduced me to the wonder of Pharmaton capsules. I'm really rubbish at taking supplements and vitamins but between Antistax and Bassets chewable vitamin C, I was getting much better and now I'm a total convert. Alongside a combo of vitamins and minerals, Pharmaton has a ginseng extract to stave off fatigue and let's face it, who doesn't need that at the moment? Because, if we're honest, the inability to get out of bed may or may not be linked to the inability to get into it at a decent hour and as we roll up to Christmas, that's hardly about to get any better...
If you want to know more about Pharmaton and their fancy schmancy ginseng, hit the Pharmaton website. It is pretty and orange like the dress I am wearing today. FYI.
If you want to buy some Pharmaton capsules online, try ExpressChemist.
If you want to know more about my inability to get get to bed on time, Facebook me and enjoy the hilarious downward spiral of my life in pictures.
*Come on Claudia, you're so pretty and my friend Steven really fancies you but just once I'd love to see you with maybe a pretty pink lip or even a dramatic red - it would REALLY suit you.
Monday, 3 November 2008
All hail the latest thing of wonder from Prescriptives.
Their new LipShines have finally cracked it - I am off gloss.
No really, something very strange has happened to me since my birthday, I'm wearing high heels all day, I'm drinking white wine spritzers, I don't drop my bag and launch tampons all over Hammersmith when I get off the bus... I'm not saying my transition into lady-dom is entirely down to this lipstick but there's a clear connection.
Anyway, onto the actual real life reasons why you should buy it:
1. The sheer colours are gorgeous and really buildable. I'm obsessed with Strawberry Twist which just gives a healthy lip coloured tint on first application but after a couple of coats, it gives a gorgeous deep berry red which really pops.
2. The formula contains antioxidants, vitamin C and E and feels like you've just applied a particularly lovely lip balm. Gorgeous.
3. The packaging is awesome. Fact.
Seriously, Prescriptives is totally in the running for My Favourite Brand this year. As if my Custom Colour foundation wasn't fabulous enough, I can't believe a lipstick now exists that has got me off my gloss addiction.
Someone get one for Amy Winehouse, these things are miracle workers.
Friday, 31 October 2008
Ta-da! It's the beginning of our annual Christmas gift extravaganza!
And who better to start with than yourself? I mean, there are hard times ahead people - if you can't treat yourself to a little something to get you through a bleak, freezing winter, then what can you do? Well, you could get a sugar daddy to get it for you but that requires effort and friends, I an very lazy...
So limber up the credit card, I'm hitting the Bobbi Brown counter.
First things first, I am obsessed with the new Copper Diamond collection (more on the individual make up items next week when they release on counters) and so will be bagging the Beauty Kit posthaste. Okay,yes it's £65 but have you seen how beautiful it is?
And since I'm being so organised, limited edition Lip and Eye palette will make the perfect stocking filler.
Pink Sequin Creamy Lip Colour
Exclusive Dusty Mauve Creamy Lip Colour
New, Exclusive Ruby Creamy Lip Colour
Champagne Quartz Metallic Eye Shadow
Gold Dust Metallic Eye Shadow
New, Exclusive Golden Bronze Metallic Eye Shadow
New, Exclusive Galaxy Metallic Eye Shadow
And it's all double tiered with a little drawer! Yes, I am entirely swayed by packaging.
Sigh. I want.
Get it at Bobbi Brown
Thursday, 30 October 2008
If you spend £50 at Boots this weekend, you get 1000 free points, so buy your Halloween shit there and make out like bandits!
If you go today, you can still get the Front Cover Rainbow Eyes eyeshadow kit we featured last week for half price, from tomorrow, you can get an amazing Ruby & Millie colour collection for just £25.00 - that's £25.00 off!
I am inexplicably BESIDE MYSELF about Halloween this year... It's all very odd.
Part of this is due to the fact that I have the best costume ever. Zombie Cheerleader. Oh Yes.
Now, as you can imagine, the zombie make up is key to this look (aside from the pom poms and High School Musical outfit) and I'm pleased to say, I've managed to create it from actual beauty prods, rather than face paints. Because you know, ew.
So for the base, you need a really good layer of foundation. I'm using Maybelline Dream Matte Mousse because it's a) cheap and b) heavy enough to hold the colour onto it. Go as pale as you can. In my case, this just means use your regular shade. On top of the foundation, I'm using BeneFit's Snow Job powder eyeshadow which is a lovely icy blue, perfect for that 'dead for three weeks' look. Takes all the pink out of your complexion. Then, I'm shading under the cheekbones with Estee Lauder Silver Ball to really create a hollow look. Ironically, this makes my cheekbones look amazing which is an unexpected bonus.
Once you've got the complexion right, move on to the eyes. The key here is layers, you don't want to be popping off to the loo to top up every five minutes, do you? I'm starting with a base of Urban Decay Primer Potion to keep everything solid and then going all over the lid, into the crease and all around the lower lashline and inner rim with Stila Smudge Pot in Black. This should give everything else something to cling to and if everything else melts away, experience tells me this baby will hang around.
On top of the smudge pot, I'm going with MAC's Knight Divine or Carbon eyeshadow for the upper lid. Blend, blend, blend, taking sold colour up into a stylised wing above the crease and then blending some more out up to the eyebrow. Go as far out as you dare - this is a real chance to be theatrical! There are some brilliant matte blacks out there that would work if you're investing just for this look and don't want to splash out on MAC. Ruby & Millie and GOSH both do pretty good versions.
For the under eye, follow the line of the Smudge Pot with a navy blue. I like the two blues in my the Stila Agate palette for this but again, Gosh and Ruby & Millie do great alternatives. Take it low so it looks like you've got SERIOUS dark circles but stop before you hit your cheek. You want the eyes to look deep with major hollow so again, blending here is key - I don't want to see ANY HARSH LINES!
Once the blue and black are all completely blended together, slick on a couple of layers of mascara, I favour Prescriptives False Lash and then add false eyelashes. You're a hot zombie after all... Once the eyelashes are set, layer on the kohl (I'm going Bad Gal or Urban Decay Zero - I'm not sure yet) all along the inner and outer rims to cover the line of the lash band and define the lower lid. Ta da!
I'm keeping my lips bare with balm and just taking the Snow Job over them to take out the colour but then I'm also wearing a Jessica Simpson wig so I'm not advising you all do as I do.
Also, I should mention that none of these prods are designed to make you look gross and when used correctly, they can be all kinds of pretty, especially Silver Ball and Dark Knight which can be combined for the sexiest of smokey eyes.
If you're into that kind of thing.
Wednesday, 29 October 2008
As you all know, there are two things in life that are guaranteed to get my attention.
1. Sparkly things
(And well, three, hot boys with floppy hair and guitars* but that doesn't tie into this post as well so we'll leave that be.)
So imagine my delight when I got wind of the new Bobbi Brown Metallics collection... It's SO pretty!
See how sparkly??? The lipsticks are divine. There are 15 shades to choose from, all of which are purdy and more importantly, they feel lovely. As for the eyeshadows, I don't have enough words. 17 shades of wonder. They're super shimmery, the intensity of the pigment is fabulous so there's no need to be building up twenty-layers to get a true colour and they can be popped out of their little cases and dropped into one of the new palettes. In case you needed another reason to buy several. I'm obsessed with Sage. And Java. And Rockstar. And Midnight. And, oh bloody hell, all of them. Thank GOD they're a permanent part of the line or I'd be bankrupting myself at the counter right now. Who needs to pay a mortgage?
Find our how fab they are for yourself Bobbi Brown counters and at bobbibrown.co.uk now.
I'll be the weirdo lurking at the side rubbing all 17 shades on the backs of my hands...
*Imagine if a hot boy with floppy hair produced the entire collection from his guitar case. Wow. A girl's got to dream, okay?
Tuesday, 28 October 2008
Officially, I am a fan of winter.
Officially, I like tights, Christmas and snuggling up under a blanket and watching X Factor. I mean, going out in the dark so I can pass for 24, not staying in and watching X Factor at all...
But what I don't like is my skin in this weather. I've gone from glowy and gorgeous (relatively speaking) to dry and unpredictable.
Happily, I have a new friend in Naturaleve, a new organic skincare collection dedicated to making me look a bit less shit. Thoughtful, I know. I'm currently obsessed with the Sweet Lips lip balm and Multi-Task Rescue Balm, both chock full of beautiful Soil Association approved organic ingredients including Shea butter and Calendula. Loving the rollerball Nourishing Therapy Oil too which was a lifesaver on my recent flight to Noo Yoik, the lavender oil in there was super relaxing. And cute. And who doesn't love a rollerball? Not enough skincare rolls for my liking.
You can find out more info, including where to get hold of some lovely Naturaleve yourself at naturaleve.co.uk
Monday, 27 October 2008
Can you even believe the clocks went back this weekend?
Seriously, it's totally winter, I've even got my big coat on.
But of course, that means it's time for Children in Need (I know it's not as good as Comic Relief but give it a chance) which means it's time for...
BeautyMecca's beloved Mr Lee Stafford is putting the 'slebs' through their paces once again and honestly, it really is quite funny. Not funny enough for us to donate our own hair to charity but you know, I'll buy a badge or something. Or a Pudsey-shaped biscuit. Do they still have Pudsey?
Visit the Celebrity Scissorhands website to find out more or make an appointment at the salon...
Thursday, 23 October 2008
Well hello beauty lovers, do you like our makeover?
I'm feeling very pretty today...
As of today, we're officially accepting that it is winter which means that I am allowed to start getting excited about Christmas. Which means you have to put up with my Christmas gift guide each and every Friday from now until I'm unwrapping my presents on the 25th December...
And as if I wasn't excited enough, Boots have done the decent thing and put this really rather fabulous eyeshadow palette on special offer - HALF PRICE BABY!
From the 24th to the 29th October, you can score the Front Cover Rainbow Eyes set for just FIFTEEN ENGLISH POUNDS.
The Boots Christmas catalogue holds a special place in my heart and I was super excited when I spotted this new range. It feels very Smashbox to me and the colours are gorgeous. The set includes 25 killer colours and a special solvent to turn the shadows into eyeliner.
Beat the in-store queues and shop online at Boots.com
Besides me actually needing this, it would make the best Christmas present for a friend, a little sister, an unbearably trendy mum... Did I mention me?
Since I've had a cold for what seems like my entire life, I'm finding big time comfort in nostalgia. And eating an entire pan of mashed potato every night. That's less nostalgia and more greed to be fair but you see where I'm coming from.
But that's one of the reasons I was so super happy to be reminded of 4711 cologne which now comes as this super cute soap in a tin. Here are some of the others:
1. Because as a child I collected soaps and soaps in tins were totally the jewels in my collection
2. My nana had a little bottle of 4711 on her dressing room table and I LOVED messing about with all the stuff on that table... shockingly enough
3. It's perfect for travelling
4. It will make an awesome stocking filler for said nana
5. You can get it from Boots which is easy or Harrods which is posh. Two of my favourite qualities in a shopping experience. Or man.
Ahh, reasons to be cheerful on a Thursday.
Wednesday, 22 October 2008
I don't know about you but I have a lot of love for one Ms Britney Spears and damn it, if using this Look My Way compact will bring me closer to her perfection, use it I WILL. Just don't be surprised if I start pole dancing at the office Christmas party and wearing a pink wig.
Actually, I do have a wig...
Plus, it's also really pretty and would make a perfect present for the tween in your life.
Grab yours from Lloyd's Pharmacy...
Monday, 20 October 2008
Now you know I tend to get a bit overexcited about, well, everything but at the moment it's a toss up between High School Musical 3 and the witchcraft that is Marian Newman's Inkredibles.
I know what you're thinking, calling your product Inkredibles is setting yourself up for a fall, right? But ooooohhhhhhhhhhh no. These things are AMAZING. I will attempt to explain them without actually crying with joy.
Basically, Inkredibles are nail polishes but instead of being made up of all evil chemicals that can only be dissolved with equally evil chemicals, they are water-based. As if that wasn't enough, they come in cool little click pens, like Stila lip glazes, so they're easy to carry around. But why would you want to carry around nail polishes, I hear you ask? I can't paint my nails on the go! Well, I would say with my jaw agape and my eyes wide, you can now!
The beauty of Inkredibles are that they dry in 10 - 20 seconds. Seriously. And if you get any on your skin, you can WASH IT OFF or use the little 'Moisture' sachet to clean up. Once your nails are perfect, you just set them with the Wrapture glossy topcoat which also sets in mere secons and then you're done. SERIOUSLY. And when you're done, you just wipe the whole lot off with a 'Remove' sachet. See? Incredible.
And if it weren't enough that the product itself is a completely life changing experience, the colours are awful pretty too, I'm loving Black Beth, named after Beth Ditto.
Inkredibles are currently available at Selfridges, £22.00 for a colour, a Wrapture topcoat, Remove sachet and Moisture wipe. Seriously, they have finally put a price on magic.
I am happy.
Thursday, 16 October 2008
Who's ready for geology?
Erm, okay, who's ready to learn about a fantastic mask that leaves your skin radiant, plumped, smoothed and mositurised and has quartz in it?
Prepare to be amazed by Elemis' GORGEOUS mask. Seriously, using it is like someone gave you a slap with the pretty stick.
This luxurious cream mask combines the power of Quartz with Padina Pavonica, adaptogenic Noni, Moringa and Argan Tree Oil to instantly uplift and hydrate the skin, minimising the signs of ageing for a more youthful, firmer appearance.
It's just lovely. It smells gorgeous, it looks pretty and it couldn't be easier to use.
And it's got quartz in it which I can't help but feel is a good thing. It makes clocks work and stuff. Grab it before the Christmas parties whither you away to naught but a husk...
Wednesday, 15 October 2008
Now, before you can truly partake in Beauty University, you must put in proper foundations... As I may have mentioned on occasion, I am fairly pale so it's important that I get my foundation just right. Now, my picture doesn't feature on this blog often but, cough, here's a NOT GOOD picture of me from my recent birthday... I'm the the one not wearing a waistcoat and holding the diet (but-no-vodka-at-all-and) coke. But you can see my predicament? And my awesome new brunette do.
But I digress, there are so few foundations out there that work for me and about a eighteen months ago, I resigned myself to the fact that I would always look a tiny bit orange. BUT THEN the most magical thing in the world happened... I came across Prescriptives Custom Colour foundation.
And it was magical.
Basically, Custom Colours is made to measure foundation which does exactly what you think it does. They actually make you your own foundation to match your skin! The colour match is perfect but, even more importantly, the actual product is great. It would be so easy to match the colour but then give a shoddy foundation but no. The coverage is perfect, it stays on all day and you get a great big old bottle. I got about eight months out of my first bottle. Can you say about your Dream Matte Mousse? And yes, I know £45 is a lot to spend on foundation (although you get an absolutely bloody amazing mini travel-sized bottle that I can't live without) but really, I have yet to find a foundation that beats it. The foundation, the powder and the concealer are available at Prescriptives counters nationwide, the lipsticks and lip glosses at Harrods, daahling.
Tuesday, 14 October 2008
Tomorrow we start the serious business of Beauty University so here is one last party post before we really knuckle down to business (ahem)...
I don't know about you but I'm starting to get very excited about Christmas. The dodgy seasonal shop is open on my high street, the Boots Christmas Catalogue is out, all the signs are there. All that is left is to lose three stone and get out the hair glitter.
What's that? You don't do hair glitter? Glitter is for tweens and X Factor rejects?
Well, perhaps I can interest you in one Mr Lee Stafford's terribly sophisticated and yet ridiculously fun new range, Bling? The ingenious collection not only preps your hair for the party season ahead, it also includes a Rehab shampoo and conditioning range to make it up to your hair it the morning after. If only all such morning after disasters were so repairable...
As a new brunette (yes, I've gone to the dark side for Autumn Winter), I'm loving the 4 Brunettes Glimmer Serum. It's chocka with vitamins and lovely hazelnut oil to really give shine and shimmer to dark hair. The 4 Blondes version, with lemon and chamomile, looks pretty good too. And I don't care what you say, one spritz of the Sparkle Spray and you'll be converted. This isn't the glitter hairspray of old, this is a gorgeous multi-tone glimmer spray that smells delicious and quite frankly says 'we're here, we're girls and we're here to party' like nothing else. Literally, the easiest way to do a 180 on work hair if you're out straight after the office.
Aside from chugging a glass of champagne and a sambuca in the pub across the road at 5.30.
Which I would never do...
Bypass All Bar One and head straight to Boots to pick up the entire range, everything's under £6.00! Which is considerably cheaper than a champagne and a sambuca in London.
Not that I would know...