Monthly Archives: February 2013

A Few of My (New) Favourite Things


Ginger - lipstick
I seem to have fallen in love quite a lot recently – and I’m spreading it around, with lots of different products vying for my affection at the moment.

Here’s my round-up of a few of my (new) favourite things in the beauty world just now.

Tom Ford Lip Color Shine (£35). Richly pigmented colour which is supremely comfortable to wear, even for the dry-lipped among us – that’s what makes this new addition to the Tom Ford Tom Ford Lip Color Shine WillfuleditedBeauty repertoire such a knock-out. I’ve found his creme lipstick too dry but this is ideal; and it’s also given me my perfect red, in the Willful shade (pictured right) …

Origins Peeper Pleaser Powder Eye Shadow (£14; www.origins.co.uk). Lovely texture, fab colours (there’s a choice of ten shades), blends beautifully and lasts very well. What more could you want from an eye shadow?

Guerlain Maxi Lash Mascara (£22). Phew, I was relieved I loved the effect of this mascara – because I was already smitten with the Deco-style gold tube before I’d even tried it.. It’s a great choice for an all-rounder mascara as it curls, adds volume and lasts well. It’s not quite as dramatic as its French name Cils d’enfer suggests – though it’s a great name, translating as Lashes From Hell, or colloquially (according to one translation I found), as Bad-Ass Lashes!

Benefit Fake Up (£18.50, available from April; www.benefitcosmetics.co.uk). Forget the notion that this being a stick concealer, it will drag the delicate skin round your eyes. It is, in fact, a very clever combination of eye moisturiser and concealer: it looks like a lipstick with a flesh-coloured core, which is the concealer, surrounded by a gentle moisturiser which has been proven to keep
the skin hydrated for six hours. It glides over the fragile skin, dispensing highlighting, line-blurring coverage as it goes.

Dr Jart Beauty Balms (from £18 each; www.boots.com) . I have to confess that although I would, frankly, have given anything to be able to emulate the radiance of Nisha, the PR girl who introduced me to the Dr Jart range of Korean BB creams, she lost me when she mentioned that one of its balms had as its wonder ingredient … wait for it … snail secretion. Luckily, the balm that I have fallen for is Dr Jart + Platinum Beauty Balm Cream (£24)  which is great on my pale skin, evens out skin tone, covers redness and deals with the first signs of ageing.

Clinique Chubby Stick Shadow Tint for Eyes (£16; www.clinique.co.uk, pictured left).  Leave the Clinique Chubby Stick Shadow Tintbrushes at home; now all you need to take out with you if you want to touch up your eye make-up is one or two of these fab new shiny, creamy eye crayons – a clever successor to the original Chubby Stick Lip Colour Balms. I’ve been using the lovely bronze shade of Fuller Fudge to create a smoky effect over Benefit’s Creaseless Cream Eyeshadow in Birthday Suit (currently £7; usually £14).

Bobbi Brown Creamy Matte Lip Color in Hot (£18; www.bobbibrown.co.uk). As mentioned in my last post, this is a glorious shade of shocking pink – the first I’ve found in years which I can pull off with my fair complexion, and the first matte lipstick I’ve come across in yonks that is a pleasure to use (ie – it doesn’t cake on my moisture-deficient lips). I can’t believe my luck in finding both my perfect red and my perfect pink in the same month..

Clarins Rouge Eclat Lipstick (£18.50; www.clarins.co.uk). Whether you believe the “age-defying” claim (based on its collagen-boosting “Nutri-Youth Complex”) of this recently launched lipstick, there is no denying that it is a terrific all-rounder, rich in colour, very creamy, nourishing and moisturising – and available in 15 delectable satin shades, of which Pink Berry is my current favourite. Clarins’ cosmetics have been on a roll of late and this, for me, is their best new make-up product yet.

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The Scarlet and the Pink

Gentlement Prefer Blondes - DAAGBFLet’s face it, Valentine’s Day can be a pretty lonely place. So I love the idea of a Valentine’s-inspired make-up range which you can buy for yourself and perk yourself up with – not that that was necessarily the concept that Bobbi Brown was going for when she devised her new, limited edition, Pink & Red Collection.

Hot pink and blood red is a combination that really shouldn’t work – but it does. Witness its most (if not only) iconic incarnation in the Diamonds Are a Girl’s Best Friend sequence from Gentlemen Prefer Blondes. The key to the clash working is – I think – that you’ve got two bold shades. The only other pink-red combo I can recall is the Catherine Walker dress that Princess Bobbi Brown Pink & Red productsDiana wore to Kuwait in 1989, but the top half was a wishy-washy pastel pink so the effect was watered down and had considerably less impact than the purple-and-red outfits which the same designer created for her.

But back to Bobbi, whose own bold take on the colour scheme has resulted in a range that stands out from the many spring collections that are dominated by pretty, delicate, romantic pinks. She says: “With  this collection, I took an unconventional approach to the season’s traditional colour palette.

“The Pink & Red Collection isn’t about matching your lips, cheeks and nails. It’s about deliberately mismatching. I love pink and red worn together – it’s a very modern mix (and perfect for Valentine’s Day).”

Personally, I’ve been seduced by the beautiful and comfortable (even on dry lips) new Bobbi Brown Creamy Matte Lip Color in Hot (£18; www.bobbibrown.co.uk), a perfect match forBobbi Brown Pink & Red Marilyn’s dress, and the Bobbi Brown Nail Polish in Valentine Red (£11), a vampy crimson shade. But if you fancy inverting the look, you could team Bobbi Brown Creamy Matte Lip Color in Heart with Bobbi Brown Nail Polish in Pink Valentine…  Indeed, they’re next on my wish list!

Also in the collection are a pink and a red lip gloss and a pink and a red cheek tint.

In all, it’s the perfect antidote to the Valentine’s Day blues….

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The Beauty Nudes Today


Benefit Glamorous Neutrals - closededited
I may wear a great deal of black but I do like a bit of colour in my make-up. Which is why it’s come as a bit of a surprise to me that I’ve been converted to the current trend for “nudes”. Nude make-up, for the uninitiated out there (or any men who have stumbled across this blog having searched for something entirely make-up – and clothes – free) is not “no make-up”; it’s make-up in flesh tones, the most subtle of enhancements to the old maquillage.

So what’s tempted me over to the nude side? Well, first and foremost it’s the new trio of eye make-up kits from Benefit – Benefit World Famous Neutrals (£23.50 each, www.benefitcosmetics.co.uk, from March). To be honest, I am not a big fan of the Benefit’s gimmicky packaging or the smart-ass names with which it christens its products, but if you’re in the market for a foolproof eye shadow set which offers a myriad of make-up possibilities, which provides lasting colour, and Benefit Glamorous Neutrals - box openwhich will prompt compliments from your female friends then invest in one of these magic boxes – Most Glamorous Nudes, Easiest Nudes or Sexiest Nudes.

My favourite is the Most Glamorous Nudes box,  which – as they all do – comes with a little booklet of “Tips and Tricks” illustrating how to create an easy daytime look and an easy “playtime” look using the two creaseless cream shadows and four longwear powder shadows contained therein.

The other big nude news is in the nails department. The new Estee Lauder Pure Color Nail Lacquer French Nudes Collection (£14.50 each; www.esteelauder.co.uk) is a range of five nail varnishes in shades designed to complement the wearer’s skin tone. The idea is that keeping nail varnish close to the colour of the skin makes the fingers look elongated and elegant – just as nude coloured shoes tend to make legs look longer.

Tom Pecheux, Lauder’s creative director, explains: “The collection is like foundation for nails. It’s all about enhancing nails, rather than making a big statement with colour.” And, you know what, it works! I’ve found the Nudite shade (second from the left in the photo below), a milky beige that’s a perfect match for my fair skin (and my foundation for that matter), looks tres chic for day and night. And if I fancy something similar but with a very subtle sparkle, No7  Stay Perfect Nail Colour in Tip Toes (£5.50; www.boots.com), a limited edition shade from No7’s new Ballerina Beauty spring collection, is pretty perfect too.Estee Lauder French Nudes

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