Thursday, October 8, 2015

Daily delight: Linda Evangelista for Moschino Fresh

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Love it: Trilogy Make-Up Be Gone Cleansing Balm

I am mad for a good cleanser – give me gentle yet effective and I am happy as a clam. Add a luxurious experience to that and I’m fair over the moon, and the very kind people at Trilogy have done exactly that with the release of Trilogy Make-Up Be Gone Cleansing Balm.
It is a new, powerfully natural way to melt away make-up and leave your skin feeling cared for, and the formula is pure bliss. I love to cleanse with oils and balms, and my dry skin just lapped up this beauty the moment I first warmed it and smoothed it on.
A rich blend of pure plant oils, certified natural Trilogy Make-Up Be Gone Cleansing Balm melts on contact with warm skin, removing foundation, mascara and lipstick like nothing else, even stay-put and waterproof formulations. If the air is cool it takes a little warming up in the hands first I’ve found, then massage into the skin and watch it do its stuff:  dissolving away every trace of make-up, along with any impurities and the remains of the day.
Extra ingredients include skin-soothing mango butter and pure oils of coconut, sunflower and rosehip, so you are left with skin that is softened and hydrated too. If you’re a Trilogy fan then you’ll be well-versed in the joys of certified organic rosehip oil, whilst coconut oil, another multi-tasking wonder oil, is rich in essential fatty acids and has natural antibacterial properties to heal and repair. Sunflower seed oil delivers yet more essential fatty acids, along with antioxidant Vitamin E and minerals, and has calming and soothing properties to maintain balance in the skin.
It comes packaged with its own organic cotton cleansing cloth to remove every trace, and is delicately scented with a natural fragrance: a blend of ylang ylang, freesia and cedarwood. Heavenly!
To put this beauty to work:
Using your fingertips, apply ¼ - ½ teaspoon to a dry face and massage in light circular motions (or warm in the hands first as I mentioned above).
As the balm melts, gently massage into eyelashes and areas where heavy make-up needs removing.
Wring the organic cotton cloth out in warm water and gently wipe away make-up and balm.  Repeat as necessary to remove any excess balm.
Trilogy Make-Up Be Gone Cleansing Balm (80ml) has an RRP of $38.90 and is available right now. 

Monday, October 5, 2015

Celebrating Cloudy Bay Sauvignon Blanc 2015

Called a benchmark wine that “redrew the global Sauvignon Blanc map and rearranged a few boundaries in the world wine atlas”, Cloudy Bay Sauvignon Blanc is a wine that needs little introduction. To say that I am a huge fan would be an understatement, and with the 2015 just released it is already my favourite spring tipple.
Applauded around the world since it exploded onto the European wine scene many years ago, Cloudy Bay’s Sauvignon Blanc was once so hard to secure that even the sight of the calm greys and misty whites of its label caused a shiver of anticipation amongst fans of the wine everywhere. It was the wine that forged New Zealand's glittering ­reputation for sauvignon blanc with food reason,
Fast forward to October of this year and Cloudy Bay have launched their 2015 vintage on the 30th anniversary year of the famous vineyard. Back in 1985, Cloudy Bay captivated the wine world with its aromatic and vibrant Sauvignon Blanc, and there is much to celebrate given that thirty years on, they are launching their flagship wine’s 30th vintage.
Cloudy Bay invited myself and nine other VERY lucky media (that's me, Rosie Kelway and Amber Peebles in Blenheim, below) to their Blenheim property to taste, enjoy and celebrate the latest vintage, whilst honouring those past along the way. Thoughtful and luxurious activities included a wine matched lunch at the Bay of Many Coves Resort following a boat ride accompanied by a pod of dolphins, a viticulture tour by helicopter, a five course degustation at Cloudy Bay’s beautiful venue The Treehouse, a range tasting at Cloudy Bay’s Barrel Shed and more. It was a trip full of delight and revelation, and the opportunity to pick the brains of winemaker Tim Heath and viticulturist Jim White was beyond compare. In White’s words, “we simply cannot turn out a bad Cloudy Bay Sauvignon Blanc”, and the pressure is on the entire team – and the terrain – to perform year in, year out. Cloudy Bay can only be produced in a specific part of the world, specific to a precise location within New Zealand, meaning every vintage is unique and scarce, and that is most definitely also key to its charm.
So to the new vintage – is 2015 in sticking with the winning formula or uniqueness, freshness and consummate drinkability? Well, with the 2015 season providing one of the driest summers on record and an official drought declared in Marlborough, the Cloudy Bay team watched the weather with baited breath, waiting for even a hint of rain. Just as they had, years before, they triumphed over the drought-like conditions of 1998 and 2001, and have succeeded in producing a fresh and vibrant 2015 Sauvignon Blanc “another excellent example of our 30-year history of premium wine,” says Heath. “The 2015 Cloudy Bay Sauvignon Blanc is intense, concentrated and focused with mouth-watering acidity that gives structure and textural intrigue to the palate, it is a hallmark expression of Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc.”
Designed like its predecessors to be enjoyed with 36 months or less when  - to quote Tim Heath once again – “it’s doing its job”, the 2015 Sauvignon Blanc is destined to be loved by fans of the brand young and old, and its freshness pretty damn evident for a 30-year-old brand. Here’s to another 30 year then, and keep up the incredible work, Cloudy Bay.

Thursday, October 1, 2015

All about: Minicami, my new favourite everyday luxe essentials

Designed “to assist the awkward bra showing moments under semi revealing tops”, I have recently discovered the Minicami collection and am totally head over heels for it.
It is the beautiful brainchild of Justine Connolly, a long-time New Zealand fashion industry face who moved to the Coromandel community of Whangamata three years ago and started creating a few pieces as a hobby of sorts. Fast forward to 2015 and the brand has a bit of a cult following, with orders flying afar afield as the United Kingdom and New York, where a private customer picked up on their presence via social media and fell in love with what she saw.
Connolly says, “proudly made in New Zealand, Minicami is an essential element in any woman’s wardrobe. They are perfect when worn under semi revealing tops, as well as adding a delicate lace line to a lower cut garment”. As well as several exquisitely hand finished styles, the collection also includes matching frenchies for each bralette and the pieces come in glorious shades like antique nude and French navy as well as basic black and white. New additions to the collection include the amazing BraletteT, a delicate wee lacy number that is surprisingly functional too: it has a t back for under racer back tanks et al, whilst looking absolutely gorgeous when revealed. The Strap Me Bralette performs a similar task, and I love that the designs are often available as short and longline, and there is also the option of soft cup inserts to minimalise nipple factor!
I can see a Minicami mini-wardrobe making its way into my lingerie drawer, and love that they are super travel friendly and each piece comes in a pretty organza bag for washing and portability purposes. Love it!

If you’re in Auckland pop into Goodness in Herne Bay to check them out, and you can also buy online and follow their pretty Insty at @minicaminz

Daily delight: Zoe Kravitz for C magazine

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Beauty news: Bobbi Brown opens at Farmers NorthWest

In huge news for beauty lovers, Bobbi Brown Cosmetics will be opening tomorrow at the brand new Farmers NorthWest!
It will be the exclusive line developed by celebrated makeup artist Bobbi Brown’s first Studio in West Auckland, joining the existing five existing Bobbi Brown Studios in Auckland. It is the second Studio to launch this year in New Zealand and comes with some major celebrations.
To celebrate Bobbi Brown arriving at NorthWest, the brand will be running an opening promotion that I heartily recommend you take them up on! Simply book a complimentary ‘Bobbi’s Ultimate Makeup Lesson’ and receive a free full-size Lip Color valued at RRP$54. To continue the opening celebrations, you will also receive a free deluxe sample of Smokey Eye Mascara (one sample per customer) when you book any Makeup Lesson at Bobbi Brown Farmers NorthWest.
Appointments are limited and available on 1-5 October 2015, and the offer is available until 6-31 October 2015 only, or while supplies last. During peak periods (excluding 1-5 October 2015) the 45 minute lessons may incur a $90 booking fee, but as always it’s redeemable on Bobbi Brown product purchased on the day of the appointment.
Teaching is a key component of Bobbi’s philosophy and her professional makeup artists teach women to be their own beauty experts. Bobbi Brown has always been a makeup brand associated with real life, unabashedly pretty looks, and a lesson with one of their artists is a true audit of what you’re wearing right now (and possibly shouldn’t be). Before applying any makeup, each artist takes into account a woman’s personal style, her lifestyle and her preferences. Every makeup lesson concludes with the creation of a personalised face chart to help recreate the look at home.
The perfect way to kick off the new season, really!
And the best thing about Bobbi Brown’s make-up lessons is that you’ll always leave the store with natural-looking make-up - unlike some beauty ­counter makeovers, when you just want to go home and scrub it all off.
The Bobbi Brown Studio will be located in Farmers NorthWest:
1-5 Fernhill Drive
Waitakere 0657
Telephone: (09) 831 0200

Daily delight: Mariah Carey for M.A.C Cosmetics

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Hair how to: Dolce & Gabbana S/S 16 by Guido for Redken

If last season’s Dolce & Gabbana show was all about the great tradition of Italian mammas, then for SS16, it was all about the glamorous tourists. Domenico and Stefano sent out an ode to all cheesiest bits of their homeland, alongside a collection that was a riot of curve hugging and feminine shapes in bright and beautiful prints.
Fifties silhouettes ruled, smothered in rich laces, floral prints and gorgeous red, white and green stripes. Postcard prints splashed across silk dresses for the much-loved finale, accessorised with Riviera headscarves and enormous cat-eye shades. Just gorgeous!
The hair look for the show was created by long-time Dolce & Gabbana collaborator Guido, Redken’s Global Creative Director.
"The look at Dolce this season is very soft and romantic,” he said after the show. “It's very easy, almost like you were an American on holiday in Italy and you just threw your hair up for the evening. I used Redken Signature Look Wind Blown 05 to get that gorgeous texture, and then gathered the hair up into a high ponytail, twisting it into a messy chignon. It's very soft around the hairline with the little baby hairs pulled out, and I added just a bit of height at the crown to soften the silhouette. I finished the look by placing different types of crowns, scarves and beautiful hairpieces throughout the hair to enhance the charm."
To create the look at home:
1. Start by spraying Redken Pillow Proof Express Primer all over damp hair and comb through.
2. Use a round natural-bristle brush to blow-dry hair straight.
3. Lightly spray Redken Signature Look Wind Blown 05 Dry Finishing Spray all over hair to enhance natural texture.
4. Create a short centre part with fingers.
5. Use fingers to gather hair into a high ponytail at the crown of the head and secure with an elastic, leaving some baby hairs and random pieces out in the front.
6. Twist the length of the ponytail into a messy chignon and secure with hair pins.

Daily delight: Caroline Trentini for Testino's 'Towel Series'

Monday, September 28, 2015

Wellness news: the Be Kind To Yourself SUP Yoga and Mindfulness event

As the weather warms up many of us start to see the ocean as a playground in earnest, and checking out the upcoming Be Kind To Yourself event is a great way to kick of a summer of wellness and fun in the great outdoors.
Pod: Be Kind To Yourself is a day of SUP, SUP Yoga, and Mindfulness workshops with organic raw food by SIP Kitchen, massage, and SUP Prehab Q&A with Pinc and Steel cancer rehab physios.  It is aimed at all levels of paddler - from 'terrified (never paddled before, i.e. me)' to 'ready to turn pro’, and takes place at Auckland’s beautiful Castor Bay Beach on Sunday 18th October.
There are limited spaces available (total 48) and the earlybird ticket price is $169 - before 30 September, or $199 after.
Special guests at the event include:
* Pyschologist Anna Friis, who will be introducing the day with a Mindfulness and Self Compassion workshop
* Tim Seuter, from YogaFire - a yoga teacher and fireman who specialises in SUP Yoga -
* Natalie Stettler, from The Floating Mat - a yoga teacher and Lululemon ambassador who will be leading the mindfulness and goal-setting workshops -
* Victoria Stuart - PaddleFit Level 3 Coach and Starboard ambassador, who will be teaching the beginner and Intermediate SUP -
* Armie Armstrong - Incredible Waterman and SUPer Sessions Coach, who will be teaching the Advanced SUP
* Lou James - Pinc and Steel Cancer Rehabilitation Trust Founder and PaddleOn SUP Rehabilitation Program developer, with PaddleOn physios Megan Schmidt, Kath Broad, and Kate Corbett 
Natalie and Victoria are organising the event, which is the third in a popular and successful series that included “Keep Calm and PaddleOn” last year and the “Pod Wellness Retreat” the previous summer. "We wanted to hold the event in October as a way of supporting Pink October, International breast cancer awareness month, because we truly believe that stress and exercise play a critical role in your overall health and wellbeing, as well as regular breast checks,” says Victoria.
A portion of proceeds from the event will go to Pinc and Steel Cancer Rehabilitation Trust for the PaddleOn program, which kicks off again 2 November for men and women with all types of cancer.
To register visit

Daily delight: Marion Cotillard for PORTER magazine

Friday, September 25, 2015

Fragrance Friday: a Q&A with Jason Morgan, face of Armani Acqua di Giò Profumo

When I was in Sydney a few weeks ago I was lucky enough to be invited to a seriously fabulous lunch with GQ Australia at my all-time favourite Sydney dining spot, Bondi’s incredible Icebergs. We were there to celebrate the release of Armani’s newest men’s fragrance, Acqua di Giò Profumo and the setting could not have been more perfect.
Armani first presented its popular masculine aquatic fragrance Acqua di Giò back in 1996. Nearly 20 years later, the new version - Acqua di Giò Profumo - is elegant, airy and deep and I have to say I’ve loved it so much that I’ve been wearing it myself! The fragrance “symbolises the merging of sea waves with black rocks”, hence the Icebergs setting for our lunch.
The face  - and body, hello! – of the fragrance is model Jason Morgan, and here’s a little insight into what makes him tick and why he’s all about Armani…

When did you first discover Acqua di Giò?
I remember seeing the first ads for Acqua di Giò years ago at the mall (King of Prussia, Pennsylvania) with my mom when I was a teenager. lt was a really special ad. I wasn't involved in the industry back then and didn't pay as much attention to advertising as I do now, but that's one of the ads I remember. It was, and still is, a scent that I enjoy; it's so clean and refreshing. The fragrance has such a classic and iconic feel to it.

What comes to mind when you hear the name Giorgio Armani?
When I hear the name Giorgio Armani I think of a truly iconic, legendary man who has influenced the world with his style and vision. The brand commands respect.

How does it feel to be the face of Acqua di Giò? How was your experience on set?
When I was told that I was chosen for Acqua di Giò it was a dream come true. To represent Armani and this fragrance is the best job someone in this business can get. The ads are always so well done and impactful. I feel extremely proud and grateful to be chosen for this - I still really can't believe it happened.
Modelling underwater was a new experience for me and I had never used a breathing tank before either - It was challenging at times when I had to swim past the camera and perform a certain motion when I couldn't see anything, but it was a lot of fun to be able to hang out under water for 20 minutes at a time. Overall it has been a great experience.

Is taking care of yourself a pleasure or a duty?
Taking care of myself is part of my job so yes, I do see it as my duty. With that being said, I have always taken pleasure in staying fit and healthy. When you look good and feel good, your life is improved and your mood is elevated. Your health is more important than anything. It’s number one.

What are your secrets for staying healthy?
I really don't think there are any hidden secrets for living a healthy lifestyle. We all know that exercise and eating healthy, natural foods and drinking a lot of water are the most important things to do to stay healthy. It's just a matter of making it a priority and a habit.

Do you use any grooming products?
Since I did the shoot and the Giorgio Armani team gave me a bottle of Acqua dl Giò, I have been using it every day. I will usually spray a little on my neck after a shower and a spray or two on whatever shirt I am wearing. It's so light and refreshing, it is perfect for me because I don't like to smell too strong. I really like the balance of Acqua di Giò. It's subtler.
Otherwise I use Cerave face wash and moisturizer SPF30. In my hair I use a Paul Mitchell shampoo and mousse - it keeps my hair from falling in my face all day but doesn't make it stiff or greasy. For my skin I use a Kiehl’s facial mask once a week and a Biotherm body moisturizer.

Have you ever used fragrance to attract a woman?
I will usually wear scents that I find pleasant, it’s important for me to wear what I like so I feel comfortable. I think when you feel good and you're comfortable in your own skin you will attract more than trying figure out what you think women want.

What is your first olfactory memory?
My first olfactory memory is the smell of the ocean. I always spent my summers at the beach (Avalon, New Jersey) as a kid and it's my favorite place to be. Nothing brings me back to a happy place faster than the smell of the ocean. My father just bought a house there last month so I am really excited about spending time there again in the future.

You live in New York City, what are some of your favourite destinations?
Living in NYC is really amazing; it has so much to offer. I have been here for over seven years and I still discover new things daily. I really enjoy going to the museums - MOMA, MET, The Guggenheim etc. When it's nice out it's also a great place to just hop on a bike and explore. One of my favorite things to do is ride along the West Side Highway and then onto the Williamsburg Bridge to Brooklyn.

What is your favourite travel destination?
I still love getting out of the city and travelling. My favourite place I have ever visited in all my travels is Maui, Hawaii. It’s so different from the life I live here and l'm definitely a beach person.

Last up, your pet peeve?
I have a lot of pet peeves, actually, and flying as often as I do has only made that list bigger. For example, people bringing their own food or someone kicking your seat. I would say my most valuable possession right now is my noise cancelling headphones. I don't travel without them.

Daily delight: Mariacarla Boscono, Ricardo Tisci and Naomi Campbell for Vogue Brazil