Tuesday, January 31, 2012

In love: Peter Philips on Chanel BLEU ILLUSION

Karl Lagerfeld and Peter Philips really are a match made in heaven. Karl conjures up beautiful themes and collections and Peter is always able to translate that aesthetic into an equally gorgeous beauty collection. For the Chanel spring-summer 2012 Haute Couture show Philips created BLEU ILLUSION.
In his words:
“For the SS 2012 Haute Couture Show I chose to focus on the eyes and to add a touch of pearl on the nails. The brief was: blue!
In combination with the ‘hair statements’, the most flattering and
contemporary solution for the models was to have a simple kohl-eye look, but instead of black kohl, I created a ‘blue-khol’ - Bleu Aérien, a new intense blue eye pencil that I applied to contour the eyes.
I created two new Illusion d'Ombre. The shade ‘Apparition’ is an intense, greyish blue that I applied on top of the eye pencil, fading out towards the outer corner of the eye, and ‘Destination’ is a pale, silvery satin blue that I used on the inner corner of the eye and very moderately under the eyebrow.
I finished the look with black mascara Inimitable Intense in ‘Noir’ and a deep blue line in the eye with the Crayon Khôl in ‘Marine’.
For the nails I created a pale pearl blue shade called Le Vernis ‘Sky Line’. It's a beautiful, easy to apply, pearly (on the edge of metallic) shade that matched perfectly with the range of blues that Karl used for this Haute Couture Collection.”
And a full rundown of the products used to create the runway beauty looks:
Skin prepared with HYDRA BEAUTY SERUM Hydration Protection Radiance (available April 2012)

The Complexion:
PERFECTION LUMIERE Long Wear Flawless Fluid Makeup SPF 10

ECLAT LUMIERE Highlighting Face Pen


POUDRE UNIVERSELLE LIBRE Natural Finish Loose Powder

The Eyes:

EXCLUSIVE CREATION ILLUSION D’OMBRE Long Wear Luminous Eyeshadow in Apparition and Destination (available July 2012)

EXCLUSIVE CREATION LE CRAYON YEUX Precision Eye Pencil in Bleu Aérien (available July 2012)

STYLO YEUX WATERPROOF Long Lasting Eyeliner in Marine

LE CRAYON KHOL Intense Eye Pencil in Marine

CRAYON SOURCILS Sculpting Eyebrow Pencil


RECOURBE CILS DE CHANEL Precision Eyelash Curler
The Cheeks:

JOUES CONTRASTE Powder Blush in Rose Ecrin

The Lips:

ROUGE COCO BAUME Hydrating Conditioning Lip Balm

LE CRAYON LEVRES Precision Lip Pencil in Natural

ROUGE COCO Hydrating Crème Lip Colour in Superstition

The Nails:
EXCLUSIVE CREATION LE VERNIS Nail Colour in Sky Line (available July 2012)

Daily delight: Abbey Lee Kershaw for Gucci “Flora”

Friday, January 27, 2012

First look: backstage Chanel, Le Vernis Sky Line

Beauty discovery: natruél and the wonders of honey

New Zealand is a real breeding ground for innovative and unique natural skincare brands, and I love it when they have a little history and a good backstory to go with their products.
A perfect example of this is a brand I’ve recently come in contact with called natruél. It is the brainchild of one very clever woman at Mossop’s, a family business that has been keeping beehives and producing and packing 100 per cent New Zealand honeys since 1947.
The skincare brand now known as natruél was just “a twinkle in Mossop’s general manager Wendy Mossop’s eye” back in 2002, when her then 83 year old mother used Mossop’s UMF® Manuka honey to heal the wound from a skin cancer operation on her ankle. After a couple of months, the wound had completely healed and the skin around the wound was soft, supple and as smooth as a baby’s proverbial. This opened Wendy’s eyes to the amazing benefits of honey internally and externally and she made it her mission for Mossop’s to develop a chemical free skincare range using UMF® Manuka honey as the main ingredient. Five years later, in November 2007, natruél finally made its debut and has gone from strength to strength since. It is manufactured using a high percentage of UMF® Manuka honey, and contains no parabens, no artificial fragrances, no petroleum derived products and no synthetic ingredients. Love that! It does however contains goodies like the aforementioned “super” honey, cold pressed olive oil, cold pressed flaxseed oil and propolis.
I’ve just started using the Nourishing Hand & Body Lotion, which is created using a riot of yummy ingredients and is a beautiful formula to use even on the hot, stocky days we’ve been experiencing Down Under of late. It’s easily absorbed and little goes a long way too, so it’s great for throwing in your bag and using on the go.

Daily delight: vintage Vanessa Paradis

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Summer Essential: The Perfect Bronze Kit

Lucy and the Powder Room at The Department Store is definitely near the top of my list of “happy places”, and is also where I discover all many of beauty tips and treats.
Naturally, and packages and kits they put together are impeccable, and I absolutely love this summer-focused Perfect Bronze Kit that is key to achieving exactly that.
In it you’ll find on of the legendary Riffi mitts – in my mind the best exfoliating tool on the market. They are indestructible and washable, and the ones I own have been stalwarts in my bathroom for years now. As well as helping with ingrowns, they are a great way to boost your circulation – and keep one step ahead of dry skin.
The kit also contains a voucher for an in salon spray tan – reportedly the safest in the biz with a beautifully natural glow – and a full size SANS Regenerative Cream body moisturiser, which contains the likes of Omega 3’s, antioxidants, AHAs and Vitamin A. A totally power pack for great skin, I’ve used this in the past and can vouch for its efficacy and its general, all round awesomeness. It’ll help your tan linger for longer, along with keeping your skin super noursished.
The Perfect Bronze Kit is just $140.00, get yours now!

Daily delight: Frida Gustavsson for Elle Sweden

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

I try: Smashbox Halo Highlighting Wand

Like having your own personal lighting director, Smashbox’s Halo Highlighting Wand promises to help bring out your best angles – all day long.
An Allure Best of Beauty Award Winner, it’s a super easy to use, click-through pen that allows for precise highlighting and gives you a super dewy glow exactly where you aim it.
Available in two shades - Pearl or Gold – it has a creamy formula that is really easy to control application-wise, mimicking the way light reflects off of the face to create what Smashbox calls “a beautifully lit photo” every time you use it. How good is that?
To apply, just pop on a small amount of product with the applicator brush, and then gently blend in with fingertips. Try brushing it over the tops of your cheekbones, down the bridge of your nose, on your cupid's bow, chin and above your brow bones – wherever you want the light to hit. Magic!

Love it, need it: Trilogy's Helping Hand Wash

Trilogy were one of the pioneering companies in New Zealand natural skincare, and ten years later are still forging ahead with innovative new releases whilst early ones have gone on to become cult favourites (who hasn’t had a bottle of their original Rosehip oil on rotate at some point in their lives?).
In celebration of 10 beautiful years in business, they have launched a year long campaign to raise funds for Child’s i Foundation, a wonderful charity helping to end the tragedy of baby abandonment in Uganda.
Their all-new, all-good Helping Hand Wash is a gorgeous, limited edition product created specially for this campaign. All profits from its sale throughout 2012 will be donated to Child’s i Foundation, which runs projects caring for abandoned babies and vulnerable mothers in Uganda and places children in loving homes.
Established by Lucy Buck (pictured above, right), a seriously amazing British woman who gave up a successful career in TV production to help the children of Uganda, Child’s i Foundation is a small charity making a big difference. In Uganda poverty, disease and violence are rife – which leads to hundreds of children being abandoned every year. The charity’s transitional home and family support centre provides quality short-term care for babies; while its Social Work Team ensures every child in its care grows up in a loving family in their home country.
And if that isn’t enough of a backstory to make you rush out and grab a bottle, the hand wash itself is an absolute joy to use. It combines the natural antibacterial properties of Elderberry and Burdock with natural vegetable oils, whilst Trilogy’s signature fragrance of frankincense, rose geranium and lavender gives it its delicately delicious smell.

If you would like to give time, love or money to Child's i Foundation, visit the website: www.childsifoundation.org or email: volunteer@childsifoundation.org or office@childsifoundation.org

Daily delight: Anais Pouliot, Ming Xi and Kate King for Vogue Russia

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Summer essential: St Tropez Tan Optimiser Tan Remover

This is a product with a seriously long name that happens to perform a very simple task – perfectly!
From the St Tropez Tan Optimiser Tan collection, this Tan Remover (pictured) helps to remove any unwanted Self Tan in an instant and whatever your skin type. It’s perfect for the palms, soles of the feet and heels, as well as to even up any darker-than-necessary patches on the elbows and knees. And bonus: you can even remove unwanted tan up to four hours after application, which is about when you start to spot serious disasters looming!
To use it simply apply to hands with a little water immediately after applying your tan, paying particular attention to fingers and palms and any other trouble spots. Too easy…
This is a total summer essential if you’re a self tanner like me, which I should sincerely hope you all are! Love the sun, hate the burn.

Daily delight: Sasha P. for Club Monaco Spring 2012

Monday, January 23, 2012

Summer essential: Stephen Marr’s Hair Repair Kit

Summer is the season when your hair gets assaulted at all angles – think sea salt, sunshine and humidity, all banding together to seek and destroy healthy locks! Throw in a few highlights and you have a lethal combination that soon leads to dull, brittle ends and a general follicular downer.
If you’re in the market for a preventative or a method of addressing all of the above, you can’t get much better than the Hair Repair Kit from Stephen Marr salons. I don’t really need any excuse to hit one of their stylish locales, but if you do then this little baby is it.
It contains a professional-only protein and moisture infusion to heal, nourish and repair, a bottle of SANS Nourishing Ultra + hair treatment from Lucy Marr’s hair and bodycare range of the same name and a Kevin.Murphy wooden Texture Comb to keep your tresses in order by neatening without frizzing. Love that combo! I’m a huge fan of SANS Nourishing Ultra + in particular and kicking myself that I’m all out right now. It is truly like first aid for damaged locks, with four times the nutrients of many conditioning-type products out there in the marketplace right now. It’s also free of all manner of nasties and smells beautiful, two more big ticks in my book.
To get your hands on a Hair Repair Kit – a steal at just NZD$120.00 - click here for details of a Stephen Marr salon near you.

Cult favourite: the rather magical Beautyblender

Already afforded cult status despite the fact that it hasn’t even been around that long is the Beautyblender, which is often called “the ultimate make up sponge applicator”. The clever tool was invented by top Hollywood makeup artist Rea Ann Silva so that all you lucky little piggies out there can achieve a professional finish and a flawless complexion. The key to a perfect face is a perfect blend, and this baby gives you just that, mainly due to its elliptical shape that makes application foolproof. Its suede texture feels gorgeous and its unique curves fit the contours of your face, plus it’s latex free, non-allergenic and odour free.
The Beautyblender has won more awards than many of us have had hot dinners, and being a full time mother of two, celebrity makeup artist and entrepreneur, Rea Ann can appreciate the many challenges that women face when it comes to quick and easy beauty solutions. Your makeup routine needn’t take an hour in the morning, although for too many women I hear about it actually does! Get one of these little wonders and I guarantee you will shave a hell of a lot of precious time off that.
And lucky for us down in the Southern Hemisphere it’s now available at East Day Spa, so get in and grab one now!

Daily delight: Bambi for YSL makeup/Harpers Bazaar

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Love: Bobbi Brown’s rich n' spicy Marrakesh Chic

Morocco has been on my “must visit” list for over ten years now, but with no plans to hit the nearest Kasbah yet I’ll – quite happily - make do with a play with Bobbi Brown’s beautiful new collection, called Marrakesh Chic.
Inspired by the markets in Marrakesh, Morocco, she created the line after a trip to the country with her husband a few years ago. "It was such an amazing trip and I was so inspired by so much that I saw there, especially the incredible rich earthy colors that dominated the cityscapes and the rural vistas that we traveled through," she said in a press release. "As soon as I got home, I started developing ideas for a seasonal collection featuring a new eye shadow, based on what I had seen and experienced there."
That new formula is the collection of Rich Color Eye Shadows (pictured above), which are creamy powder shadows with pigmented colour payoff that promises a 12 hour wear time. The shades are absolutely incredible, and as for the wear time? It’s totally on the money.
Super matte, I find the best application technique for these is fingers to blend these completely out and avoid any patchiness. The end result is a perfectly smoked out shadow look that makes for a great nighttime eye when you’re using my favourite shade, Coffee Bean.
These are on counter in early March Down Under, so start saving now!

Cult favourite: Dr.Hauschka Rose Day Cream

After over 40 years, this baby is still one of Dr.Hauschka’s most popular skincare products with good reason. It’s had celebrity endorsements from the likes of uber babes Helena Christensen, Cher, Jade Jagger and Kate Moss, but it’s the fact that it actuallyperforms above and beyond many of its competitors that knocks me out, and has assured that it stays at the top of the “best of” lists of beauty editors for many years now.
The hero ingredients in this award winning day cream include biodynamic rose oil and wild rose hip extract, which envelop the skin with a protective nurturing film. The team at Dr.Hauschka source their Rose Essential Oil from partnerships in Bulgaria, Iran, Afghanistan and Turkey. These initiatives provide secure incomes and steady jobs for farmers in lower income areas, so you know as well as doing your skin some good; you’re also enriching the lives of others.
Each tube of this rich, beautifully scented cream contains the extract of over 1,075 organic rose petals, who work to strengthen the skin and soothe redness. This encourages the skin’s natural repair process when sensitivity is an issue, while also providing calming and protective care for nurturing healthy skin and eliminating redness. Rose has warming properties so is often an autumn/winter choice for day care, although the company also created a lighter version for the summer months for those that truly are addicted! The lightweight formulation is ideal for warmer months, and still harnesses the goodness of the likes of rose petal extract to nurture and fortify, and rose wax to protect while marsh mallow root hydrates.
Used as directed a tube of Rose Day Cream lasts approximately three months, making it a great buy as well. Love this!

Daily delight: ANTM's Fatima Siad for Herve Leger

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Love for your best friend: Mind Body Institute’s Animal Reiki

I’d heard it called everything from “a life changer” to “the emperor’s new clothes” before I tried Reiki, and now only think of it as pure, unadulterated love. I can’t recommend Rosanna from Mind Body Institute in Richmond Road’s healing hands enough, and she and her partner Ben are now also treating animals.
An incredibly simple practice. Reiki is a method of hands on healing which originated in Japan at the turn of the 20th century. Reiki practitioners channel energy in a particular pattern to heal and harmonise. Unlike other healing therapies based on the premise of a human energy field, Reiki seeks to restore order to the body where vital energy has become unbalanced. Reiki Massage energy has several basic effects; it brings about deep relaxation and peace, disperses negative energy blockages, detoxifies and purifies the system, provides a new vitality and radiance in the form of healing universal life energy, and increases the vibration frequency of the body.
Rosanna tells me that Reiki is ideal for use with animals as it is gentle and non-invasive. It does not cause stress, discomfort, or pain, and yet yields powerful results. Animals respond intuitively to Reiki's power to heal emotional, behavioural, and physical illnesses and injuries.
A very special treat for your best friend, Reiki is great for animals that are healthy, helping to maintain their health and wellbeing, enhancing relaxation and providing an emotional sense of peace and contentment.
For animals that are ill, Reiki is a wonderful healing method as well as a safe complement to Western medicine, Chinese medicine, homeopathy, flower essences, and all other forms of healing. For example, Reiki can reduce the side effects of chemotherapy, support an acupuncture treatment, and enhance the effects of flower essences.
For dying animals, Reiki is a powerful yet gentle way to provide comfort, relief from pain, fear, and anxiety, and to ease the transition to death.
If you take caring for your furry family members seriously then I recommend a trip to see Rosanna and Ben for a consultation – it’s a life changer, I tell you!

Summer essential: Pure Fiji Hydrating Body Mist

If you’ve gone back to work already, chances are you’ll be desperate to keep some of that summer feeling alive indoors, a task that seems impossible when you’re faced with days looking at a computer screen and your only break is in a grimy city street.
Lucky for you then that those wonderful people at Pure Fiji have on offer their absolutely delicious Hydrating Body Mist with Coconut Milk and Honey Infusion, which is a natural island body spray that has been designed to invigorate, hydrate, and soften your skin whenever and wherever you need it.
The easy to use, lightweight, non-greasy formula absorbs quickly so is great for using on the go, and even comes in a handbag-friendly slim bottle that is just begging to accompany you when you leave the house each morning.
And as for the yummy tropical formula, it uses ngi grass to refresh and hydrate skin, while the natural aroma of coconut milk and honey leaves you feeling just one step away from the nearest white sand beach.
It may not get you on a plane or pop a pina colada in your hand, but it will have you feeling that much closer to island style bliss!

Daily delight: Xiao Wen & Grace Gao by Stockton Johnson for Vogue China

Monday, January 16, 2012

Having fun? Remember to love your liver

It goes without saying that the majority of us have been “overdoing it” to some extent over the last few weeks, be that in relation to good food, alcohol or – if you’re lucky – the sun. If you’re in the Southern hemisphere like me then it’s the best time to start a detox regime as diets are naturally higher in raw fruits and vegetables when it’s warm, and around this time the guilt really start to kick in!
If you’re planning a detox of any kind it’s good to have a support plan in place, and here’s where supplements can really help – especially when it comes to your liver.
The liver purifies the blood, keeps cholesterol levels in balance and stores energy for when the body needs it. It detoxifies or processes everything we eat, drink and breathe, including prescription drugs and environmental toxins. When the liver is overburdened it may lead to poor health and disease, so it’s a good idea to take extra care of it and reap the rewards in the long run.
For long-term support of your liver, making friends with the likes of Clinicians LiverProtect Plus is a good way to start. The two-in-one product is unique because it doubles as a supplement for daily liver support and, taken in higher doses, it can support a detox programme too.
It is made from a blend of plants and herbs like globe artichoke, milk thistle, dandelion, schisandra and curcumin. Globe artichoke, for example, has traditionally been used as a liver tonic and anti-toxic herb. It also supports liver cell regeneration and provides protection against toxins via its antioxidant action. Studies have shown that this plant can help support bile flow and healthy cholesterol synthesis.
The clever little tablet also includes minerals like copper, zinc, manganese and selenium to support the body’s own production of antioxidant enzymes which protect against free radical damage. Show your liver some love by adding one to your routine morning now – it's almost too easy!

Daily delight: Meghan Collison for Roberto Cavalli Spring 2012

Friday, January 13, 2012

Beauty destination: Dr. Teresa Cattin’s new FaceWorks premises

Dr. Teresa Cattin (pictured) - who I’d heard about for years before meeting her, and always in rather glowing terms – is in my opinion New Zealand’s best cosmetic physician, and a top-notch woman to boot. A Medical Practitioner (MSc, MBBCh, FRNZCGP, FNZCAM) and a member of the Appearance Medicine Society of Australasia, she is also the owner of FaceWorks Clinic in Albany, Auckland, which has just shifted into rather gorgeous new premises.
Incredibly serene but with just the right amount of comfort thrown in for good measure, it is a true reflection of the professionalism and warmth you experience when you meet Teresa, making it a true “beauty destination” worthy of a mention.
As well as being president of the New Zealand College of Appearance Medicine, Teresa is a national trainer in Botox Cosmetic and Juvéderm, training other doctors in New Zealand and Australia. Needless to say, she is a clearly a woman who knows who stuff when it comes to needles and ant-ageing, and recently traveled to India – and soon to Paris – to share her incredible wealth of knowledge.
But back to the new clinic, which is as private as they come. It’s set back from the road on Apollo Drive as well as being purpose built for absolute discretion – you enter and exit on opposing sides of reception, for starters. It’s also spacious with just the right mix of great magazines and good coffee to make you want to hang around, and chill you about before the needles come into play!
If you fancy a consultation with Teresa you’ll find her details here, she comes highly recommended!

Cult favourite: The Body Shop’s Born Lippy stick

February sees the launch of the new Born Lippy collection from The Body Shop, which sees the cult favourite introduced in a super portable stick form. The range consists of six lip balms in the Born Lippy collection’s best selling flavours: pomegranate, pink berry, plum, lychee, toffee and strawberry. Yum.,
A great choice for summer if you’re anti-gloss like me, it gives lips a pop of colour, a shot of moisture and a soft, sexy shine.
It has a great backstory too, as the key ingredients are Community Fair Trade marula oil from Namibia and Community Fair Trade beeswax from Cameroon.
The marula oil comes from the ripened fruit of the marula tree in Namibia, where the fruits are hand-selected and the nuts extracted and allowed to dry in the sun. The moisture-rich kernels are cold-pressed by hand to release the oil by the Eudafano Women’s Co-operative of Namibia, which is owned and run entirely by women. By setting up their own factory, the 5,000 members have gained entrepreneurial skills and, they say, a newfound self-esteem.
And if all of that isn’t enough to convince you to pick up one of these little marvels, check out the super cute pop art packaging (above)! Love it.

Daily delight: Laetitia Casta for Amica

Thursday, January 12, 2012

All new: M.A.C Mineralize Charged Water Skincare

New Year means New M.A.C, and the always-innovative creators of what seems like a million beauty essentials have started dropping some serious contenders for my makeup kit and bathroom cabinet already.
Making its debut just as 2011 closed its doors was Mineralize Skincare with the brand’s ionized Super-Duo Charged Water technology. The collection includes Mineralize Charged WATER CLEANSER, which gently removes makeup without scrubbing or massaging, Mineralize Charged WATER MOISTURE GEL, a rich and creamy, superlight and hydrating gel, and for those tired post-holidays eyes begging for a boost: Mineralize Charged WATER MOISTURE EYE CREAM, to instantly minimize dark circles and puffiness. I’m trialling the latter right now and have to say that the texture is in-credible, and it feels so beautiful on. I’m not relying on it completely to erase fine lines and the deeper signs of ageing, but I am impressed by how hydrating it is and think it’s a great go-to eye treatment for mornings – especially the morning after the night before!
I’m dying to try the cleanser now – the more water in my life, the better!

Good health, great smile? Meet Oragenics Probiotics

New Year is when a lot of people start vowing to turn their life around, inevitably setting themselves up for failure as the pressure is so great! It is a good time to ease yourself into a few, simple and healthy habits though, which can be everything from drinking more water to cutting dairy from your diet.
Taking quality supplements is always a move in the right direction, and they can also help boost your immunity and heal your gut post-holiday madness. One I’ve heard about recently that really intrigued me is a mint formulated to support the oral health of adults and children called Oragenics Probiotics for Oral Care.
Containing three strains of beneficial bacteria, it helps restore essential bacteria in the mouth that can protect against tooth decay, whilst crowding out the harmful bacteria that can damage oral health and cause bad breath. As an added bonus, the product is also proven to naturally whiten teeth (see Jessica, above); up to four shades in 30 days!
The Oragenics Probiotics formulation contains a blend of three naturally occurring strains of beneficial bacteria. These bacteria are found naturally in healthy mouths, and can reach where toothbrushes can’t, deep into the crevices on the chewing surfaces of teeth, gum tissue and deep beneath the gum line, where harmful bacteria can wreak havoc with oral health. They also help prevent overpopulation of the destructive bacteria that causes bad breath, leaving the oral bacteria balanced, thereby creating clean and fresher breath. Antibacterial mouthwashes and breath fresheners kill up to 99.9% of bacteria and germs in the mouth, but also wipe out both the beneficial bacteria along with the harmful bacteria, creating ongoing bacterial imbalances, and providing only a temporary solution by masking bad breath.
Taken daily, the beneficial bacteria will also release a low level form of hydrogen peroxide as a normal by-product - naturally whitening teeth in 30 days - without any of the potential side effects, such as pitting, cracking and sensitivity that may result from use of high dosage hydrogen peroxide commercial whitening systems. That gets a big tick from me!
Oragenics Probiotics for Oral Care range includes an Adult formulation (aged 11+) and a special Kids formulation (aged 3-10), and is available in New Zealand at Amcal, Unichem, Care Chemists, Radius and Life Pharmacies.

Daily delight: Mirte M. and Mathias B. for Tom Ford

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Summer essential: L’Oréal Paris SuperLiner Gel Eyeliner

I love a clean, uncomplicated makeup look during the warmer months, but still like to keep things polished and with a little bit of pop.
A bronzed, healthy complexion looks a treat with a bright red, tangerine or coral lip, and another great idea for night is to add a slick of black eyeliner. Think sharp not smoky to stay on the right side of modern, and pick a quality product that will stay the distance in high humidity after hours.
One that I’ve been playing with lately and absolutely adore is L’Oréal Paris’ SuperLiner Gel Eyeliner (pictured), which is easy to use and gives a totally flawless result.
Super duper black, it has highly concentrated pigments in an ultra-creamy formula, and its high precision brush means a thick line in just one sweep. Love that! It is also 24-hour long wear, waterproof and smudge proof, thus ticking all of the boxes that I outlined above.
When applying don’t be too heavy handed – a little goes a long way – and watch the seriously great brush do its stuff. An absolute essential!

Daily delight: Gisele for Versace Spring 2012

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Love: Ecoya’s Decadence range Zhou Xuan candle

Just before Christmas I was lucky enough to get my hands on one very special candle – the Zhou Xuan (pictured) from Ecoya’s brand new Decadence range.
Ecoya are a company that in my mind can do no wrong, but they seriously raised the bar on luxury with this exquisite collection. The Decadence range pays homage to powerful, iconic and sassy women of the 1920s, an era later referred to as the Art-Deco period, which was defined by unprecedented social change, freedom of speech and women’s liberation.

Widely acknowledged as the most creative era of the 20th Century, the Art-Deco period is the inspiration behind the bold and artistic packaging of the range, with each soy wax candle poured into the most beautiful cut glass, Deco-style holder.

The cities of London, Paris, New York and Shanghai grew to embrace and exemplify the Art-Deco world of the 1920’s and ‘Decadence by Ecoya’ celebrates the contribution made by four women whose spirit epitomised these cities.
But let’s talk about Zhou Xuan, the candle that’s been top of my list of ‘what to burn’ this holiday season. 1930’s Shanghai was known as the ‘Paris of the Orient’, and the jewel in its crown was the glamorous Zhou Xuan. A singer and star of the screen, she was singlehandedly responsible for the transformation of the Qipao dress or Cheongsam, which during her era took on a life of its own due to a higher hemline and dramatic figure hugging lines. Known for her collection of beautiful Qipao, Zhou was a style leader for her time and this beautiful candle does more than honour her memory.
The oriental exoticism and romance that is Shanghai is captured here in dark wood and musk, with just a hint of Vanilla, Bergamot and Lemon in a rich, floral heart of Jasmine, Ylang Ylang and Rosewood. In other words: to die for.
Next on my list? The Dorothy Parker candle inspired by the heady days of 1920’s New York… divine.

Daily delight: Arizona Muse for Vogue Paris

Monday, January 9, 2012

Summer essential: BECCA Dusty Rose Lip, Cheek & Eye Palette

"My search for the 'perfect foundation' became a mission that was to prove as elusive as the search for the Holy Grail!"
- Rebecca Morrice Williams, Founder of BECCA

And thus began the quest that was to culminate in the amazing BECCA beauty brand, created by Perth makeup artist Rebecca ten years ago. Frustrated by her own inability to find the perfect foundation, one that would look natural, conceal blemishes, feel weightless on the skin and stay fresh all day, she set out to create it herself. Fast forward to 2012 and she has under her belt a beautiful range of skin-perfecting products that make it possible for everyone to experience a seriously fabulous complexion, and I’m a raving fan.
To commemorate ten years of BECCA beauty the company has released the Limited Edition Anniversary Dusty Rose Palette (above), which is a multi-tasker’s dream. Pairing tried-and-true classic shades with new, get gorgeous hues, this exclusive quad palette is perfect for cheeks, eyes, and lips and features:
* Crème Blush – Turkish Rose (rosy nude)

* Lip & Cheek Crème - Tuberose (coral pink)

* Crème Highlighter - Narcissus (opalescent peach)

* Lip Gloss - Cassini (pink)
And if that’s not enough to get you wanting one of these in your handbag, get this: USD $2.00 from the sale of every one of these pretty palettes will also benefit charity: water, a non-profit organization bringing clean and safe drinking water to people in developing nations.
Get yours now from Glamorpuss, or a BECCA stockist near you!

Love it: Lancôme's Roseraie des Délices collection

Towards the end of 2011 I was lucky enough to be given a preview of legendary French beauty brand Lancôme’s newest makeup release, the Spring 2012 collection Roseraie des Délices.
For this most colourful of seasons, Lancôme make-up artistic director – and all round lovely Kiwi guy - Aaron De Mey has imagined “a fairytale where appetising pleasures mingle with beauty in a lush garden echoing Jérôme Bosch’s painting ‘The Garden of Earthly Delights’”. Phew, beautiful stuff! De Mey was heavily inspired by the rose garden at the family home of Lancôme founder, Armand Petitjean and the collection is full of pastel colours that make it perfect for the season.
The luscious Roseraie des Délices line up includes rose inspired shades like green, soft orange and soft pink, with lots of shimmery textures to brighten up the complexion and the darkest of long winter days. My pick of the collection is the La Roseraie des Delices All Over Face Palette (pictured), which makes for the most flattering blush I’ve seen in a while and is the perfect combination to achieve that rosy cheeks. It also looks absolutely exquisite with a 3D rose graphic design imprinted on the powder. Almost too gorgeous to use really, but use it I must…
If this collection doesn’t add a twinkle to your eye despite the fact that you’re back at work, I don’t know what will!
* Roseraie des Délices is on counter in New Zealand February 20, 2012*

Daily delight: Karlie Kloss for Vogue Nippon

Friday, January 6, 2012

Summer essential: Dr. Hauschka Toned Day Cream

Summer days for me mean a largely makeup free face, helped hugely by a good intake of water and fresh fruit, as well as a damn good skincare regime. That’s not to say that I don’t like to keep things polished – in a totally carefree way, bien sur! – and having a selection of great tinted moisturisers and primers on hand helps hugely.
Dr.Hauschka Toned Day Cream is one that I discovered towards the end of 2011, and it’s already a firm favourite. A tinted multipurpose moisturiser (love that), it provides skin with a dewy sun-kissed warm coloured complexion with the added benefit of moisturising care in one ridiculously easy application. Great even when humidity is high – hello, Auckland - it absorbs super quickly into skin to calm redness, balance irregularities and give you a natural healthy glow, while also smoothing out uneven complexions. It comes out a warm beige colour but becomes transparent when applied to the skin, warming and enhancing each individual skin tone.
A great choice for those who suffer from eczema, rosacea and acne, it visibly reduces redness and blotchiness while soothing irritation whilst keeping the skin’s moisture levels perfectly balanced, and as its Dr. Hauschka, there’s nothing in there that will harm you or the environment. Highly recommended for anyone looking to pare down their beauty routine this summer, or just to harness a little of their own gorgeous glow.

Daily delight: Chloe Lecareux for Grazia France

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Summer essential: BECCA Beach Tint

Another absolute beauty "want" of mine this Summer is more shades of BECCA’s seriously fabulous Beach Tint, which has been one of my go-to products throughout this Summer and is set to stay that way for some time.
A true multi-tasker in one small but perfectly formed tube, it is essentially a beautifully blendable crème stain that can be used for cheeks and lips and suits all skin types. Kiss-proof and water-resistant (and thus great for the beach or the pool), it dries to a perfect, streak-free, non-greasy and non-drying finish. Each shade is deliciously scented in its synonymous name, and my favourite thus far is Fig, with Watermelon sitting pretty at the top of my shopping list as I type.
Preservative and paraben-free, it contains the antioxidant vitamin E for an ultra nourishing finish, and is totally foolproof to apply. Use it alone or layer under powder blushes, bronzers, lip balms, and lip-glosses for added intensity!
I picked my tube up from the always-knowledgable ladies at Glamorpuss, and I advise you to get in there and grab some ASAP too!

Daily delight: Lara Stone for Vogue China

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Love it: Sebastian Halo Mist

When I popped into the always-a-wonderful-experience Stephen Marr salon in Ponsonby for a New Year’s Eve blow wave with the fabulous Ivan, I was introduced to a seriously essential new product for my summer beauty bag.
If you’re in the Southern Hemisphere like me you’ll know that we’re experiencing some heavy duty – quite literally – humidity hovering at around 98 per cent most days, and my usual hair go-to’s just aren’t cutting it. Cue the arrival of Ivan wielding a bottle of Sebastian’s Halo Mist, which he tells me is “the only product you need to stop frizz in your hair over the sticky months”.
Helping you quite literally see the light when it comes to shine, Halo Mist is a pure weightless shine spray that leaves hair as light as air but totally treated. The silky lightweight polishing spray even comes with UV protection, so even the sun won’t mess with your glimmer!
Easily thrown in an overnight bag, just mist it on damp hair and blow-dry for a sparkling smooth finish, and for maximum shine spray sparingly over dry hair as well. For finer hair, spray into palms and smooth evenly over just the
mid-lengths and ends.
I can’t promise your locks will look as luminous as the lovely Rosie’s above, but it just may get pretty damn close!

You need: Sodashi Toxicleanse Body Oil

If there’s one word that describes how many people I come into contact with post-Christmas and New Year’s festivities are feeling, it’s “toxic”. They are also leaning towards “sluggish”, “bloated” and “generally gross”, and are gagging to get back to their usual routine and – hopefully – make a few changes in their lifestyle for the better.
All too many New Year’s resolutions go out the window by mid-January, but there are a few beauty tools that you can add to your life to get back to feeling good – and staying that way.
One I’ve discovered – and lathering myself in from top to toe – is Sodashi’s Toxicleanse Body Oil, part of the luxurious, effective and 100 per cent chemical-free all-natural skincare brand’s Awaken range for the body. Perfectly poured into the trademark Sodashi indigo glass bottle (pictured above left), it is a super revitalising blend of plant oils and essences that aim to assist in eliminating toxins and impurities from the body. Cypress helps promote circulation while Juniper Berry is purifying and relieves fluid retention, and the blend helps relieve water retention, improve sluggish circulation and purify. It is also reportedly effective in the fight against cellulite, and is an absolute joy to use. Just pour a little into your palm – the spout is one of the best I’ve found on a body oil and requires minimal effort – and apply to slightly damp skin following your shower or bath. It’s also ideal for body massage if you want to share the love!

Daily delight: Hailey Clauson for Vogue Nippon