Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Ok, Its Not Strictly Beauty...

But for anyone with a passing interest in handbags, this book - Bringing Home The Birkin - is a must-read. Author, Michael Tonello found the ultimate golden ticket - a way to skirt round the infamous waitlist at Hermes for the world's most wanted handbag - The Birkin. With wealthy clients, luxury travel and some unlikely friendships along the way, Michael dishes the gossip from behind the scenes of one of the most esteemed fashion houses. It's the perfect holiday book.

You Can Look...

But here's another one that us Brits can't touch unless we hotfoot it to the States. Coach make beautiful leather bags and inexplicably they don't retail over here. However, while the bags are exquisite, so is the more recent Coach beauty round up, including this bottle of fragrance. I almost don't care how it smells; the bottle does it for me and I want it on my shelf NOW! There are also some gorgeous looking lipglosses and an imprinted bronzer that definitely needs a space in my make up bag. If anyone is heading to America and gets a chance to test the scent, I'd love to know how it goes.

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Supersoft Skin

I've been a fan of AD Skin Synergy for years....this oil is such a treat for skin and literally packed with goodness. I can hardly list all the ingredients that go into this wonder oil but here are a few:

organic rosehip seed oil, organic rose (high altitude), organic roman chamomile, organic lavender, palmarosa, neroli, frankinsense - you see -the list goes on. Boosting elasticity and collagen for plumper and firmer skin, this is an absolute treat for skin that's dry, ageing, lacklustre or blemished. And no, this isn't QVC so it isn't suitable 'for absolutely everyone, including aunts, grandmothers, cousins or your best girlfriends' - if your skin is very young or oily, you should use it sparingly. Nourishing Night Treatment, 38 pounds at

Suspect Package

Thank you to my pals at Soap & Glory for sending out press boxes with the above sticker next to my address label. Guys, A) I don't think the delivery man knows that Sexy Mother Pucker is a lip gloss, and B) Anything with the word SEXUAL slapped across your parcel isn't good. His look said he knew it was a new vibrator or a bulk order of female Viagra. I may never open my front door again.

Monday, April 28, 2008


Thank you to the impossibly glamorous Jetsetgirls ( and gorgeous JessG at Cult Beauty ( for tagging me.......I can't really work out how to tag back so hopefully my thanks and a namecheck will do instead!

Stay Out Cold

Having put the icy Play & Rewind (see several blogs down) to the test, I can report that it failed totally on a technical issue - in that it didn't cool down as it was meant to. You only get one go at it so I'll never know whether a frozen face would have been beautiful or not. So, suggest anyone tempted doesn't bother.

Friday, April 25, 2008

Good To Be Clear

There can't be any doubt what these supplements I found on an Italian website are for. You can check out their even clearer advertising imagary on Probably not when you're having breakfast.

A Toast

Toast, home of droopy clothing for the colourless, have upped their game by introducing some shades other than beige and grey. They've also got a neat little bathroom and toiletry section that includes Rose & Rose Geranium or Lavender & Petitgrain Dusting Powder. At 25 pounds for a pot of dust, I think its really a bit expensive, but if you know anyone that still likes the decadent boudoir concept of leaving clouds of floury puff all over themselves and their bathroom, then be my guest and snap it up. I suspect its only those who don't clean their own bathrooms that will want to indulge.

Flaming Beauty

Designer's Guild candles - hitherto rather boring - have suddenly got extremely glamorous. Lime Flower, Guirlande (herbs) and Capucheen (rose) are all as beautiful to smell as they are to look at. A golden rule for mainstream beauty and fragrance retailers is not to bother trying to sell a candle for more than 20 quid because customers just can't bear to see more than that burn away in front of their very eyes. However, these at 24 pounds, are the obvious exception.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

NYC Shopping List

After two years in the creative process, luxury cosmetics line Le Metier de Beaute is about to hit counters in the States. With sleek packaging, extensively researched formulas and sheer but bold colours, this brand is ultra-luxy, opening for business in Henri Bendel NYC on May 1st. Its just one more thing to add to your jet-set shopping list. Just to be a little bit picky - their hero bronzer/blusher is called Blonzer. It kind of sounds like you've said neither properly. But on the upside, their very posh looking lipglosses have some fabulous names; Dubai, Monaco and Bali to name a few.

Two C's Worth An A

It's no secret that I'm a Chanel girl through and through - I'm genetically programmed to walk down Old Bond Street and do a sharp right straight through the doors of the store. More often than not its purely looking but every now and again I can't resist a bag. Lucky then that Chanel's beauty range is every bit as good as the hype - I haven't yet found anything to match their nail polish in terms of shades and longevity, and creatively the make up is unmatched - and it doesn't hit the bank balance nearly as hard as the handbags do! So, I'll be really happy to splash £29 on the new UV Essential that provides SPF 50. It's far more refined than a sunblock so it's not right for the beach; it's more an environmental and anti-pollution protection with a high SPF ensuring that sun exposure during, say your lunch hour, doesn't leave lasting damage. It's very light and absorbs to a matte finish, making it the perfect protective base for your tinted moisturiser. Plus it's a very swanky accessory!

Tuesday, April 22, 2008


Yesterday saw the CEW(UK) beauty awards - an industry insider event where beauty experts, editors and buyers vote for their favourite beauty products. Anyway, swanky lunch at the Park Lane Hotel, glamour unlimited and mercifully brief speeches from the award winners. A couple of the presenters of the awards had a tricky time announcing the winners - take L'Oreal Paris Solar Expertise Active Anti-Wrinkle & Brown Spot Matte Fluid Protection SPF50. Try saying that after a bit of corporate hospitality. Suggest you don't make this your very favourite skincare product because just asking for it seems an impossibly tall order.

Out Cold

I've just been sent an intriguing product - Play & Rewind from IcyBeauty. Two self-cooling mono-doses of very cold (its says freezing but not sure it actually is) serum to be applied as a dual (Play) before you go out to boost up your complexion and get it glowing and plumped, the other (Rewind) detoxifies the morning after the night before to get rid of under eye bags and decrease any puffiness. If ever I heard an excuse to stay out really late and party, here it is! All in the interests of beauty sleuthing. I'll post how I get on next week. 34 pounds from

Friday, April 18, 2008

Red It Yet?

Dainty Doll is a new range aimed at red-heads who find it hard to get tones just right for their unique colouring. Girl's Aloud star, Nicola Roberts is the brains behind this beauty, and its available through Biba-pop-diva packaging, and sheer, wearable shades give it credibility and hopefully longevity.

Bite Me Valerie

Just when you thought an eyebrow transplant might be a bit, shall we say, out there, along comes tooth tattooing. Get your favourite celebrity, pet or historical figure imprinted permanently on your smile. On second thoughts, don't.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Raised Brows

Ok, so eyebrow transplants are the new boob job. Apparantly, they've shot up in popularity following trends for 'strong' brows. And, I really, really wanted to rubbish them and say how crazy, BUT, they are amazing! Hair is taken from a donor site (stop it!) - usually the back of the head, and during a 3 hour procedure, are transplanted. Those with patchy alopecia (rather than completely bald), unexplained hair loss and those who have plucked their brows into oblivion can give up the stripe of crayon or tattoo'd brows that have been the only option. It's a serious procedure, not to be undertaken lightly - but think on this... there is a web site that sells false eyebrows. And its busy. See, and (hairloss gallery).

A Fool And Her Money...

Just had a press release through extoling the virtues of a new cream - SkinVenom - promising 'Botox' like effects. Not only is this kind of unwise because the real Botox are getting litiginous and issuing stern warnings about using the actual word when describing anything other than the real thing. There have been many releases and features recently describing 'a botulin like effect'! Not the same ring. It's also unwise to imply that any cream is going to give results as good as my fave muscle freezing jabs. There is simply no way that a cream can deliver on this promise. SkinVenom apparantly contains 'mirror like' ingredients to venom that paralize muscles by making them forget to wrinkle. And maybe a broken promise is a snip at 180 pounds, but somehow I doubt it. I predict lots of Grazia-esq enthusiasm for this potion, but expect it to be a one hit wonder, although it did sell out in the States. And anyway you can practically have the real thing for that money. The makers, Syence, are giving away trial samples if anyone wants to feed back and give it go. Since I haven't actually tried it myself maybe this is a little harsh, but experience tells me that it probably won't be anywhere near as good as botulin!

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Shhh...IT Colour

So OPI's latest offering - The IT Colour - is supposed to be the summer's must have. Frankly, I have had fungal infections that look better on nails. Matt yellow. I ask you.

The Pain vs The Gain

The Braun Silk Epil Xpressive (oh please, who is in charge of naming these things?) is the latest uber-epliator. If you don't know what epilating is, it's a system of hair removal that involves a multi-tweezered machine ripping out hairs from where-ever you choose. Hurt? Oh, man, does it hurt! BUT, it really does work. It's the most effective form of hair removal I've used, and gives a just-been-waxed finish without missing a single hair. Impressive. At £89.99 (Boots), it's a cost-effective way to deal with your fuzz issues for good. Using it on legs is easily bearable but armpits are for the bravest only.

Pretty Pick n Mix

What's not to love about these glamorous offerings from Paul & Joe? Spring collection Lipsticks and Face Colour Powders are £14 each. Lovely creamy textured lippies and divinely fine powders in vintage style paper pots. Nearly better than a trip to the cake shop.......

Calorie Free Pina Colada

My weakness for candles has got a grip again...I'm currently burning a delicious candle that smells like the best holiday I wish I'd had! Its a soy based brand called Malie from Hawaii - so it gives a good, clean burn with no sooty moments. The Pineapple Coconut really does smell like the perfect blend of both and is an intensely evocative, tropical aroma.....Anyone with a penchant for retro cocktails can get the scent without the hangover! Tucked away on a strange website,, this range of home and body fragrancing deserves a much bigger audience. The candles are £14.95. They should be more.

Friday, April 11, 2008

Penhaligon's Surprise

Paid a trip to Penhaligon's on Regent Street today for a perfume matching service having got totally tired of all my regular faves (Creed Virgin Island Water, Jo Malone Orange Blossom, Jo Malone Nectarine & Honey). The incredibly knowledgable staff had me sniffing two fragrances, one after another and rejecting the one that I liked least, until I had blind-smelled at least 12 perfumes. As the process went on I found myself clinging to Lily of the Valley above all the other scents. Until I found Violetta. As soon as I got a whiff of the boudoir-powdery-flowery and above all pretty fragrance I ended up grinning from ear to ear at the sheer pleasure of the scent. It's such a spring aroma - feminine with a tiny tad of green notes - undeniably girly but hey, am so over unisex/celebrity/'challenging'/quirky fragrances. What's wrong with a perfume just smelling of the very thing its supposed to? Tonka bean bottom notes? All a bit lost on me, I'm afraid! The packaging is beautiful, the shopping experience is perfect....I'm sold. The irony is that my all time favourite candle is Jo Malone Parma Violet.

Spot On

EasyLooks are portable strips of make up that house each item in a tiny bubble. Work to party without the hefty vanity case, weekends away or simply touch ups on the go, these dots are sheer genius. I've tried them; the formulations are sheer and lush; each strip contains foundation, concealer (blend them together to get your ideal base shade), shadow, highlighter, blush and gloss (which I straightaway wanted in full-size...!). The included instructions on how to work your look are easy to follow. Genius. £9.95

Monday, April 7, 2008

Look Who's Coming Now

Rumour has it that industry hoover SpaceNK (known for sweeping up all the best brands before anyone else gets a sniff) is bringing Kate Somerville beauty across the pond. Skincare expert Somerville is responsible for the glowing complexions of Paris Hilton, Debra Messing and Jessica Alba, and her range's USP is goat milk. Eeww or oooh? Not sure. However, the exfoliant, ExfoliKate, that I tested was so packed with cinnamon (the USA's fondness for making all beauty products smell like a Ben & Jerry flavour is boring now) that it even stung the back of my hand. Not so though the Quench Hydrating Serum - heavy on the silicone I think - that makes skin feel silkier than, well, silk.

In The Best Possible Taste?

Things that make you go 'hmmmm'...Sip 'beauty' drink. Basically, naturally flavoured water with added botanicals and vitamins designed to make your skin glow. £1.85 a bottle. Could it possibly be that free water from your tap and a healthy diet might do exactly the same thing? At last summer's beauty launches, Sip was the drink of choice, and while it does taste slightly more interesting than water, it's not exactly delicious. Sip's lastest venture due on shelves in May is LicketySip - a beautifying ice-lolly, at £3.99 for 4. You see....hmmmm!!!