Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Beauty news: ILIA Beauty arrives in New Zealand

The range of ILIA Beauty organic products recently made its official entry into the New Zealand market, a fact that will have many a natural beauty fan jumping with joy! Its local home is in Auckland at the wonderful Glamorpuss Cosmetics and Parlour in Hawkes Bay, and I was lucky enough to try some of the products at the time of the launch.
For those of you that haven’t heard of it - I admit I was in that camp a few weeks ago - ILIA Beauty is a prestige line of natural and organic lip, cheek and eye products that combine “superior colour performance and nourishing organics” in one. Founder Sasha Plavsic has a background in branding and marketing for fashion labels in London, New York and Southern California, but also was passionate about organics and found the market lacking when it came to great makeup. Back in 2009 she says that it became clear to her that organic makeup “was in need of its own “re-branding” – new, contemporary colors, superior packaging and product performance,” and with this in mind, she set about producing safe beauty products that women can love for their look, and trust for their quality.
All ILIA products are made with up to 85 per cent certified organic ingredients and have major multitasking properties judging by the play that I’ve had with them and reviews that I’ve read online. The 23 lip/cheek pieces can be used on their own or mixed and layered to create custom colours and formulations, and I fell instantly in love with the versatile lip conditioners that can be slicked on for a subtle tint of color or layered for increased intensity. Each one is created with up to 85% certified organic, bioactive botanicals including Jojoba oil, Cocoa Butter and Vitamin E, while fresh pomegranate delivers natural antioxidants for protection against free radicals. The result is pure lip care - free of synthetic preservatives, fillers and petro-chemicals - and I say hallelujah to that. The lipsticks are also totally beautiful to use and have great pigment (meaning a little will go a long way) and I’m dying to get my hands on one of their lipstick crayons, which sound amazing too.
Founder Sasha recently said, “Somebody said to me that because it's organic it's good for you, and it doesn't matter if it doesn't work as well as the mainstream stuff … I intend to change their mind”, and I think she will be well on the way. 

Love it: Smashbox Love Me Paint Pen Eye Liner

The Spring 2013 collection from Smashbox Cosmetics certainly got my attention, and as an absolute freak for liquid eyeliner I got very excited about one of its star products (pictured).
The small-but-perfectly formed offering collection - called Love Me - is a collaboration with artist Curtis Kulig and thus very reminiscent of his style of street art, whilst still staying totally true to Smashbox. Needless to say, it is also very, very cool. The collection consists of two eye shadow palettes that have Love Me inserts that lift up, a blush, two lipsticks, two lipglosses and the oversized liquid eyeliner that I fell in love with on sight.
Based on Kulig’s signature paint pen, it is a liquid liner with a beautifully matte finish, which makes it a must for creating edgier, statement-making eye looks. Despite its size it is seriously easy to use; and the fact that it is densely pigmented means that it is quick to apply too - one swipe over each lid and you’re well on your way to some high drama of the sultry variety.
For a fine line use just the tip of the pen, or for a thicker line, lay the pen on its side and gently glide along the lashline. The more pressure applied, the thicker the line you will achieve. Too easy!
Now I’m dying to try the collection’s beautiful, warm pink lipstick known as Tempt Me, which I reckon would be the perfect match for a geometric eye. Love it.

Daily delight: Georgia May Jagger for Dazed & Confused Korea

Monday, April 29, 2013

All about: Bio Hydraderm at Louise Gray Skin Care

Anyone who knows me will be aware that I’m not a big fan of microdermabrasion. I’ve tried it several times and my skin has ended up looking like a hot mess, and I have heard the same from many other women. It just seems a tad too rough for my liking, and when you’ve got reactive skin like mine ‘rough’ is never a good option.
Having said that, I was intrigued when I heard that the team at award winning skin specialists Louise Gray Skin Care were using a new version of the tools and technology involved in microderm with a twist - the Bio Hydraderm.
Louise has said “some people get excited about new cars, new iPads, and clothes, but nothing excites the team at Louise Gray Skin Care like investing in long term skin care solutions.” After years of research, she says that they finally found technology that matches “our philosophy for non-invasive, anti ageing solutions” in the form of the new Hydraderm service. It has given them the power to provide a more advanced version of Microdermabrasion, but is chemical free, has less side effects, and the diamond tip plates are so much more exact so they can properly control the device to produce excellent results for even the most sensitive clients. The treatment can be wet or dry as well - a variety of abrasion selections and matching Aquafuse products allows the skin therapist to quickly perform as many as four passes, meaning serious results with minimum discomfort. I like! 
Some of the immediate benefits include diminishing the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, softer, smoother skin and refined pores and a reduction in the appearance of scar tissue and sun damage, and my skin looking seriously glowy (a la Natalia, above) after just one treatment. I shall be back for more!
Louise has created a supercharged trio to address skin issues that she has called The Power of Three. It’s a professional skin care treatment combining Hydraderm (exfoliation) Light Activated Skin Rejuvenation (LED therapy) and Nano (Vitamin infusion).  The results are truly something special and will make serious inroads into anti-ageing and general skin rejuvenation at $269.00 per treatment.
For more details head to Louise’s website here.

Daily delight: Scarlett Johansson for Marie Claire US

Friday, April 26, 2013

What a steal: the new formula Olay Regenerist

It has been called “the biggest change to Regenerist since the launch of Regenerist" a decade ago, and Olay’s supercharged new version of the legendary formula is just that.
With 20 per cent more anti-ageing ingredients than the original it is a serious skincare product to add to your arsenal, and surely one of the industry’s biggest ‘steals’ at NZD $49.99. It’s a known fact that this pot of goodness has been proven to “regenerate your skin surface faster than a $250 luxury cream and hydrates better than 18 luxury creams costing up to $500,” and the amazing price point combined with its effectiveness has been a large part of its runaway success since day one.
The research team at Olay have been spending a lot of time over the past few years developing a new skin theory that they call Skin Fatigue. Using fresh tools based on Cellular Bioenergetics research, they have discovered skin's cellular bioenergy, like our body, slows down as we age, which is why older skin is slow to respond to anti-ageing treatments. Using Cellular Bioenergetics imaging tools, Olay was able to visualise skin cellular energy levels in living skin cells, and discovered a significant decline between 20 and 60-year-old skin. "Our research reveals that cells simply don't have the functioning metabolism required to fully respond to anti-ageing treatments,” says a spokesperson from their R&D team, “this leads to a slowed response to anti-ageing treatments and visual skin improvement." They then deduced that an effective approach to fighting skin fatigue is to boost aged cells' ability to produce energy and its ability to respond to stress, and singled out three active ingredients - Niacinamide, Pal-KTTKS and Olivem - that can actually help fight skin fatigue in aged cells.
Blinded by science a little? Let’s just say that the new and improved Olay Regenerist regenerates skin faster and boosts natural skin renewal (hydration and exfoliation), meaning that you’ll see an almost an immediate improvement in fine lines, pores, and brightness. Can’t argue with that!
The figures Olay have released on use of the new Micro-Sculpting Cream are that after just…
10 minutes: Noticeable improvement to ageing concerns like eye lines and brightness and boosting hydration
Four days: Hydrates to provide firmer skin
Five days: Regenerates skin up to 2X faster by boosting natural skin renewal
Within One Jar: Visible wrinkle reduction
They are some serious claims, but at just $49.99 a pot it won’t break the bank to gamble on this anti-ageing powerhouse if you are so tempted… so get in there!
New Olay Regenerist Micro Sculpting Cream is available from leading pharmacies and supermarkets nationwide right now.

Daily delight: Helena Christensen for Elle Spain

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Ten minutes with: ELEVEN Australia's Joey Scandizzo

A while ago I added ELEVEN Miracle Hair Treatment to my haircare arsenal and never looked back. It is quite simply a bloody great product, and everyone I’ve recommended it to has instantly fallen head over heels for its multitasking charms.
Proudly Australian made and owned, ELEVEN AUSTRALIA came into being when haircare distributor Ozdare collaborated with Creative Directors Joey Scandizzo - two time Australian Hairdresser of the Year - and Andrew O’Toole, a highly respected hair and fashion photographer in Australia and the UK, back in (you guessed it) 2011. Needless to say the trio tick all of the boxes when it comes to being experts in their fields, and their debut product was a winner. A leave-in treatment and styling product that boasts eleven key benefits for hair, it put the brand on the map from day one (and gave it its name) and has been a top seller ever since.
Early this month the legendary Scandizzo (pictured above) was invited to present the INDUSTRY 2013 finale show in Auckland, and I was lucky enough to sit down with him for a chat about the brand the following day at Stephen Marr’s beautiful Takapuna salon.

How long were you working on Miracle Hair Treatment before it launched onto the market?
Early in 2011 we came together and decided to work on a brand, so we started by looking at the marketplace and trying to find a gap, the perfect spot for us. From there it took almost a year to nail. We knew it was going to be our hero product and we wanted it to be perfect.
What was key to its mission statement from the beginning?
We knew that consumers wanted something that was no fuss, they no longer want to be dealing with five products every morning to get their hair looking the way they want it to. They wanted one.
Did you envisage that it was going to be the runaway hit that it was?
No way. It was insane. It was in something like 850 salons in Australia within the first eight or nine months. When knew it was a key product and that the only thing out there that was similar was the oil-based category, which was having problems with staining blonde hair and fine hair being weighed down. We went for a light cream that was easy to use and people just fell in love.
Does that early success put a lot of pressure on you to come up with the next wonder product, or products?
We actually have been working on sixteen other products over the past two years and they are almost ready to launch. So much work has gone into the range and it’s almost there - shampoos, conditioners, treatment and styling products…  definitely watch this space.
There are so many great haircare ranges coming out of Australia it seems, why do you think that is?
I have no idea! I guess we’re all so passionate about it and just want to go out and see what we can do. We wanted to develop an amazing product at an affordable price and I think we succeeded.

Hallelujah to that… and most definitely watch this space!

All about: My Food Bag - inspiration at your door

A few weeks ago I became intrigued about the Twitter hashtag #myfoodbag that began popping up willy nilly all over my feed, and decided to delve into it a little further. What I quickly discovered was that it was the work of New Zealand MasterChef 2011 winner Nadia Lim (above), who joined forces with 2012 Businesswoman of the Year Cecilia Robinson and New Zealand business powerhouse Theresa Gattung to create a gourmet home delivery service with the plan to “revolutionise the way we cook and eat at home”.
Called - naturally - My Food Bag, it’s is a weekly service delivering meal kits comprising quality, free range ingredients, together with nutritious seasonal recipes designed by Nadia with healthy eating and good taste in mind. It offers a Classic bag ($179.00) for families or households of four to five people for five meals that are kiwi favourites with a twist, whilst the Gourmet bag ($139.00) is for couples and contains ingredients for four meals using gourmet produce and products.
Not long after I was lucky enough to trial My Food Bag’s Gourmet service for a week and totally fell in love with the food and the whole concept. We cook healthy, fresh food as household anyway, but often get stuck in a bit of rut and rotate the same collection of favourites on a weekly basis. We also waste a hell of a lot of food when bags of greens and whatnot aren’t consumed as quickly as a bigger family, which hits my conscience as readily as it hits my pocket! My Food Bag addressed both of those scenarios from the get go, with bags of each and every ingredient we’d be needing (bar some kitchen staples) arriving fresh on a Sunday night in perfect quantities.
And the recipes - oh the recipes! They were insanely easily followed and healthy to boot, with a real emphasis on fresh flavours and a great balance of protein to carbs and the like. My trainer at the gym was seriously impressed when I shared our line up for the week and has since gone on to recommend the service to her clients. The meals can be prepared in around 30 minutes and require only easy or intermediate cooking skills too, which gets a major tick from me. “All meals I’ve created should delight the taste buds without offending the waistline,” says Nadia, and our My Food Bag line up definitely fit the brief.
Visit www.myfoodbag.co.nz to find out more and to place an order - I know I will be!

Daily delight: Valerie Van Der Graaf for Elle Serbia

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Love it: when Spa at the Pullman meet Whittaker’s

I must admit that when I attended the launch of Spa at The Pullman at Auckland’s Pullman Hotel last year it had been a seriously a long time since I had entered the hotel. Possibly back when it was in a former incarnation, and boy, things have changed. The space had a similar layout but the arrival of a simply delicious spa cuisine menu and a highly innovative treatment menu were evidence that this spa was one to be reckoned with, and the treatment I had there a few weeks later seriously blew me away.
So I was rather excited to go back, this time to experience one of the most decadent body treatments I have in a long while in the form of a beauty partnership made in heaven between Spa at the Pullman and Whittaker’s chocolate.
The new treatment, which is exclusive to the spa and only available for a limited time, uses Whittaker’s cocoa nib and the goodness of pure essential oils to create two delicious body scrubs - Peppermint Chocolate and Orange Chocolate. The antioxidant rich scrubs are created using Whittaker’s dark chocolate which helps protect the skin against nasty free radicals and promotes skin elasticity, whilst the smell is almost a sensorial overload it is so delicious! This is an added bonus as the smell of chocolate we all know and love naturally encourages our bodies to release serotonin, a hormone which promotes positive feelings and reduces stress.
Each treatment begins with a complimentary Ultimate Milk and Honey Foot Ritual treatment, during which time my therapist Talia explained what the rest of the session would involve. The next step was hitting the massage table to begin a delectable scrub - I opted for Orange Chocolate - and while the nibs rubbed away dry, dead skin, the cocoa butter worked to boost moisture and stimulate cell renewal, leaving my skin feeling soft as a baby’s proverbial.

Next up I was wrapped in a thermal blanket whilst the scrub’s active ingredients heated up and did their stuff, a divine head massage helping pass the time. After a shower I hit the bed again for a soft kneading and rub down using Japanese Camellia oil, at the end of which my ritual was complete. In-credible.
Whittaker’s chocolate scrub treatments are available exclusively at Spa at the Pullman during the month of May for an amazing $99.00 (making them a great option for Mother’s Day gifts too), and I highly recommend you book in for one ASAP. 24 hours later my skin still looks and feels amazing, which is a rarity during times of seasonal change. Valet parking and a delicious Whittaker’s chocolate take home treat also are included with the treatment, so the chocolate love just keeps on giving!
Contact Spa at the Pullman to book or for more information on +64 9 355 1242 or pullmanspa@pullmanauckland.co.nz. 

Daily delight: Karmen Pedaru for Michael Kors beauty

Monday, April 22, 2013

All about: Clinique Moisture Surge CC Cream SPF 30

First it was all about the BB Cream - the biggest beauty buzz (BBB?) of the last twelve months… Now get ready for the onslaught of the CC Cream revolution - one perfect skin at a time!
CC cream, also known as Colour Control cream, is usually described as an improved and refined BB Cream - the skincare phenomenon that came out of Korea just a few years ago. A few luxury brands have started launching their own CC Creams with some amazing results, and the latest from Clinique is no different.
Arriving on counter July 8, it is a super charged multi tasker that is destined to fly off the shelves and change many a makeup and skincare freak’s life for the better! The mega brand calls it a “lightweight formula that immediately creates natural, glowing skin”, in essence an instant complexion perfector designed to enhance skin’s natural radiance while leaving it hydrated and protected. Clinical tests have proven that the little tube of goodness works three ways too - to hydrate, protect and perfect.
Colour Correction-wise, it has dual-layered colour correcting optics that scatter light multi-dimensionally to neutralise your skin’s complexion and give it an instantly brighter glow. The end result is that dull, ashy skin appears brighter; sallow, yellow skin turns into a peachy glow; and blotchy redness is neutralised.  Pretty magical, huh?
It uses Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Water and Hyaluronic Acid to give the skin a megawatt burst of hydration, whilst water-binding agents such as Trehalose and Sorbitol are in there too to protect skin against changing humidity conditions. Last but not least, Clinque’s CC Cream also has a blend of sunscreens for UVA/UVB protection and antioxidants such as Vitamin E to protect against environmental assaults to keep skin looking healthy.
It’s super easy to apply - I start with a little and then build up if and when I need it - and can be worn alone or applied under foundation as a primer of sorts. The formula is also oil-free and non-acnegenic, so it suits a bunch of skin types, if not all.
So, getting excited? This little baby is a serious contender for multitasker of the year!

Love it: NARS' new Satin lip pencil collection

If you’ve ever tried NARS' famed Velvet Matte Lip Pencils—Dragon Girl, Walkyrie and Bettina, especially - you’ll know exactly why I’m obsessed with them. They give you the application of a lipstick combined with the convenience of a pencil in a jumbo crayon design. The colours are gorgeous, the pigment density is insane, and the stuff does NOT move. The long-lasting, non-drying formula is enriched with emollients for a creamy texture as well, and they can be used for lining, all-over lip colour, or pairing with another lip product. No handbag should be without them!
After all that raving, to say that I was excited would be one hell of an understatement. They are equally as flawless, perfectly pigmented and long wearing, but give you a glossier, slightly shinier look than their matte sisters whilst keeping things elegant, cool and totally NARS. They are available in thirteen beautiful shades (see above), with Rikugien being my first - and definitely not my last. NARS you never disappoint!
NARS Satin lip pencils are instore now at the glorious Mecca Cosmetica - I recommend a visit ASAP.

Daily delight: Toni Garrn for Madame Figaro

Friday, April 19, 2013

Love it: BECCA's magical Radiant Skin Creamy Concealer

When many of us get to a certain age - usually around 28, sadly - concealer stops being one of our best friends. She becomes the girl that constantly shows up a lot of our flaws and loves getting crabbier and crabbier as the day wears on.
It’s rather fortunate then that those extremely kind and clever people at BECCA have created Radiant Skin Creamy Concealer, which is simply one of the best of its type that I have seen in a very, very long time.
A medium-coverage concealer that brightens and covers imperfections, it is a tube of absolute delight for drier skin types, and wears exceptionally well. It is housed in a sleek, convenient, portable click-pen, and is a creamy water-resistant formula that definitely does more than just cover dark circles under the eyes and spot-conceals other areas.
The smooth texture blends seamlessly as is a joy to apply, whilst the water-resistant formula gives invisible, smudge- and crease-proof coverage that is quick-absorbing and non-greasy so a breeze to use in the mornings in particular. I found that less is most definitely more too: you only need a little to get a totally well, “radiant” and pretty damn flawless look.
Key to its charms is the fact that the formula is enriched with Vitamin E to nourish the skin’s natural repair process, discourage inflammation, and enhance moisture retention (while protecting against pollution and free radical damage to boot), whilst Orgasol Restore, a new patent-pending technology, helps reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles while making skin look more toned and supple. Add to that a nutrient-rich blend of jojoba, mimosa, and sunflower plants and you have added softness and a really luxurious feel.
Last up, it’s joyously free of parabens, fragrance, talc, and D5. AMAZING.
BECCA Radiant Skin Creamy Concealer is available right now online and instore at the wonderful Glamorpuss - I highly recommend you pick one up ASAP.

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Beauty news: Stephen Marr’s Hair Enhancement service

I know so many women who regularly complain about thinning, damaged and just plain worn out hair that no amount of volumising products or intensive treatments will fix. They rant, they rave, they despair… and they constantly sport a topknot AKA the universally unflattering Bondi Bun, or a selection of hats. Not a good situation!
Hallelujah then for the arrival of Stephen Marr’s new hair enhancement service, which isn’t just a typical hair extension system but rather a veritable life changer and unique to the highly respected salon.
For starters, only ‘remy’ hair is used – the finest quality human hair where the cuticle alignment has been maintained. This allows the hair to achieve a completely natural, super shiny and soft result and doesn’t have the telltale look of faux locks that so many of us are familiar with.
The additional hair is also applied with a specially engineered tape. With this application, the hair sits perfectly against the scalp and looks not only totally natural but also avoids the weight, bulk and damage caused by sewn in extensions. It has multiple benefits - aside from adding hair length - like the ability to be used to add much needed volume in areas where the hair is fine. Texture and highlights can even be added for a natural colour alternative, and your new locks can be dyed, heated, styled – treated like your own hair.
Stephen Marr salons have never offered hair extensions before, mainly because the stylists have never previously found a high quality product that gets the right look, and doesn’t damage the hair at the roots. Now they’ve found it and are beyond excited to spread the word.
Hair enhancement is offered in all three Stephen Marr salons in Auckland, with the first consultation priced from $550. After care includes the key advice that
hair shouldn’t be washed for the first 48 hours to allow the adhesive to dry, and maintenance sessions are booked in as required at a cost from $150 per appointment, allowing the stylist to adjust, wash and blow-dry the hair.
For more info and to book in for a set of fabulous new locks visit here.

Daily delight: a sizzling Beyonce for H&M

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

I try: the new Wella Illumina colour experience

I was rather excited when I heard about Wella’s new Illumina colour system at a media event a few weeks ago, and even more so when I had the chance to try it for myself in the expert hands of Toni & Guy High Street technical director and Illumina ambassador, the lovely Cinnamon Scholes.
Called by Wella “our biggest colour innovation in 20 years”, it introduces the idea of light to hair colour with some pretty dazzle-worthy results. What it gives hair is “sheer” colour, colour that's luminous in every kind of light and is seriously glossy.
There are two reasons that people are falling in love with Illumina, the first being the fact that the cuticle surface remains healthier with use - colour after colour -allowing light to reflect more intensely from the hair surface. This is much like light reflecting through frosted glass versus clean glass, if that makes sense! Second, a healthy cuticle also allows more light to enter the hair shaft, interact with colour pigments, and be reflected back to what we can see.
It also tackles the main causes of cuticle deterioration, so that the colour is interacting with a healthy cuticle, much in the same way as totally virgin hair.
Copper accumulates on the hair surface every time hair is washed because copper is naturally present in the tap water we use when we shampoo. When a colourant is applied to the hair, it reacts with the copper, creating so-called free radicals, which attacks the hair and then the cuticle structure. Illumina contains a patented technology that selectively encapsulates and de-activates the copper, eliminating the chance for free radicals to form. Magic!
Illumina is currently available in twenty shades in New Zealand with more on their way all the time, and there is also a ‘glossing’ treatment available that takes around twenty minutes and gives your colour incredible depth and shine.
The latter is what Cinnamon recommended for my hair and was pretty damn impressive - my locks definitely have the feel of ‘virgin’ hair and the shine factor is mind-blowing! My blow wave used no products apart from Wella’s Luxe Oil (a product I hadn’t used before but smelled amazing) and held its style for days afterward - a rarity for my hair without the layering of multiple products. If you’re in the market for a totally natural looking colour change or just a boost to what you already have and love then I recommend you check the rather magical Illumina out.

Daily delight: Lily Donaldson for Elle Korea

Monday, April 15, 2013

Giveaway goodness: all new Pureology Purify shampoo

A lot of people underestimate the difference that regularly using a clarifying shampoo will have on their hair - it gets rid of product build up like nothing else and allows your colour to really shine.People aren’t always aware that through the use of styling products and daily environmental exposure, they are left with a build-up that makes their hair look lifeless and dull. Enter the good work of clarifying shampoos, the latest of which is Pureology’s new Purify shampoo - the perfect cleansing shampoo for coloured hair.
Purify shampoo uses a blend of witch hazel, baking soda and tea tree oil to gently but intensely cleanse coloured hair.  The formula effectively works to remove particles - such as chlorine and daily product build-up - that accumulate on the hair follicle. It essentially helps clarify colour-treated hair while retaining is fresh-from-the-salon vibrancy, and because it’s part of the Pureology family it is all good and 100 per cent vegan. Its sulfate-free, salt-free, colour-preserving formula is derived from coconut, corn and sugar, with the like of Witch Hazel, Baking Soda, and Tea Tree Oil

in there to help finish off the job. And despite the fact that it’s sulfate free it has a rich and luxuriously yummy lather and it smells AMAZING.
To use it, just apply to wet hair once a week and lather. Wait 1–2 minutes then rinse and repeat if necessary. Too easy! And a trick for those that like to spend time in the water and/or use a lot of product - to remove extreme build-up or "swimmers green", shampoo hair again but don't rinse, then place a cap over it and pop yourself under a dryer (or apply steady heat) for 20 minutes, and then rinse. Magic.
I have three bottles of the new Pureology Purify shampoo to give away to three lucky readers. To enter, email me at helene@mshelene.com with your name and courier address and you’re in to win… Competition closes this Friday, April 19 at 5:00pm.

Daily delight: Sarah Ruba for Elle Mexico

Friday, April 12, 2013

All about: The travel-friendly Trilogy Rosehip Collection

I’m a bit of a freak for travel-sized beauty products of all types, and am always collecting them when I see them and ferreting them away in a box in my office. They always get used too - they make packing for an impromptu weekend away an absolute breeze, or a pack multiples when I go farther afield and gradually leave more space during the trip for goodies I might pick up when I’m on the go. Genius really!
Travel-sized versions of skincare products are also an economical way to try out anything new that you may be considering making an investment in, and the new Trilogy Rosehip Collection contains the perfect selection of Trilogy’s bestselling products in travel-friendly minis that are a great buy for yourself or someone you think would fall in love with them from first drop.
The new Rosehip Collection includes:
Trilogy Rosehip Oil Antioxidant+ (5ml)  - Trilogy’s newest superstar – an ‘everything-your-skin-needs’ beauty oil that helps to repair damage and protect from any further assaults.
Trilogy Vital Moisturising Cream (20ml) - A long standing Trilogy favourite that has been praised internationally as the ‘Rolls Royce of natural moisturisers’.
Trilogy Cream Cleanser (30ml) - With half a bottle of certified organic Rosehip oil in each Trilogy Cream Cleanser, it’s no wonder this has been a winner for the brand.
Trilogy Hydrating Mist Toner (20ml) – My favourite! This multiple award winning tonner combines delicate flower extracts from soothing Lavender, revitalising Geranium and calming Rose Petals to tone, refresh and stimulate skin in need of a vacation.

All of these iconic products are suitable for all skin types and are ideal for counteracting the dehydrating effects of travel too - an added bonus and one that will see them enter many a carry on bag from here on in!

Daily delight: an elegant Adele covers Elle US

Thursday, April 11, 2013

All about: the Kérastase Elixir Ultime 24 Carat collection

I seem to have a bit of a ‘thing’ for hair products this week, but there are so many damn good ones coming out at the moment that I’m not going to fight it! The latest comes from hair giant Kérastase, and is a new collection built around one of their most loved star products.
The launch of their newest release was at the beautiful new CityWorks branch of Dry & Tea, and involved a Kérastase hair spa treatment, delicious afternoon tea treats and -naturally - some deliciously brewed tea. The salon’s in-house Kérastase spa (pictured above) was key to the occasion as it was the perfect place to experience the sense of unbridled luxury that comes with Elixir Ultime - the brand’s star product around which the new collection is based.
Since its launch in 2011, Elixir Ultime has become a serious must-have for all those that are lucky enough to get their hands on it, and now you can go the whole hog with a unique hair bath and beautifying oil masque to match.
The new collection of treatment products offers shine, nutrition, protection and resistance to the hair, and I love the fact that using all three products is known as the “24 Carat Ritual” - it doesn’t get much more luxe than that. After I had my hair washed and blow waved using only the new collection it was the softest it has been in years, as well as sporting serious shine. It’s the ideal pick for an at-home, once a week ritual of your own, a little ‘me’ time that will leave your locks seriously dazzling, or use the shampoo every time you wash if you like your luxury delivered a little more often!
The Sublime Cleansing Oil Bain shampoo is a daily cleansing formula, with a high concentration of precious oils that removes impurities and provides deep, gentle care, without weighing down the hair. It gets a serious lather on and smells delicious, as well as being silicone free. The accompanying Beautifying Oil Masque is more designed for weekly use, with a deep infusion of precious oils that gives normal hair an outstanding nourishing treatment.
And last but not least, the launch of the new collection sees the release of a limited edition packaging of the iconic Elixir Ultime designed by jewellery designer and all round fabulous person Jade Jagger. Pictured above, it features a pair of voluptuously sexy golden lips, highlighted with a dash of red - a “stolen kiss” if you like! This limited edition is available in Kérastase salons from May 2013 while stocks last, so pick some up when you give the new collection a go - you will immediately fall in love.

Daily delight: vintage beauty Christy Turlington

Wednesday, April 10, 2013


From the minute the KEVIN.MURPHY COLOR.BUG collection landed people were absolutely mad for it. It gave mere mortals the ability to go crazy with the colour of their locks with next to zero commitment, and much fun has been had since its release!
What I’m excited about however is a new product that is designed to give you pretty much instant golden bronze highlights - the magnificent SHIMMER.BUG. Joining the existing COLOR.BUG shades in pink, purple, orange, white and neon, this new shimmery hue can be swiped onto hair for quick colour application and then - like its neon hued brothers and sisters - can be easily washed out.
“SHIMMER.BUG is an exciting new addition to the COLOR.BUG line,” explained Kevin Murphy, stylist and founder of KEVIN.MURPHY. “The golden bronze hue yields multi-dimensional highlights without the commitment of permanent colour. From the outer coppery metallic packaging to the inner bronze pressed powder, everything about this new product shouts glam and glitz. For golden highlights on dark hair, or to add radiance to lighter or red tones, SHIMMER.BUG is quick and convenient. Simply wipe on, then wash out!”
To get the warm, shimmery look apply the product directly to dry hair, and for more intense colour, prep the hair first with a thicker paste product like UN.DRESSED. For a lighter shade, use a spray like HAIR.RESORT.SPRAY first and then apply away, and for very blonde or chemically dehydrated hair, use a deep conditioner before application. Always make sure your clothing is covered, and really massage the product into your hair, shaking out any excess, to ensure it’s spread evenly. Too easy!
The launch of SHIMMER.BUG also coincides with a competition to win an Apple Macbook Pro. Each new SHIMMER.BUG comes with a golden ticket under the cap, which has a unique code. To enter, visit www.kevinmurphy.com.au/shimmercomp and pop in your unique code before saying in 25 words or less what your fave KEVIN.MURPHY product is, and why. The salon that sells the winning SHIMMER.BUG will also receive a prize in the form of an iPad. The competition runs June 1 – August 31, 2013, with the website going LIVE May 1, 2013.

Daily delight Hanaa Ben Abdesslem for Harper’s Bazaar Turkey

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Love it: Antipodes' brand new mineral foundation

I fell in love with the Antipodes skincare brand from the moment I met founder and creator Elizabeth Barbalich back in 2006, when the Wellington-based brand was still in its infancy. With a background in pure science, she's a firm believer in the importance of scientifically validating her organic beauty products so that they don’t just feel delicious and are kind on your system and the planet - they actually work. Like, really work!
But on to the latest big news for the brand, which is the release of their very own foundation, which has been scientifically shown to improve skin health. Called Antipodes Performance Plus Mineral Foundation, it is dermatologically approved for normal and sensitive skin and completely fragrance free, whilst giving the healthy, flawless appearance of a soft and dewy second skin. I’ve been using it for a few weeks now and can vouch for the fact that - unlike many mineral foundations - it is seriously hydrating, mainly due to the fact that it features Antipodes’ revolutionary Vinanza Performance Plus as a key ingredient. An antioxidant-packed extract from sauvignon blanc grape seeds and the skin of the superfruit kiwifruit, Vinanza helps powerfully protect and build resistance to damage caused by environmental aggressors and pollutants, whilst extract of mamaku black fern helps foster cell renewal, making for an everyday essential item for plump, healthy, youthful skin. This means that regular application of this pot of goodness helps reduce facial flushing, while Australian-sourced earth minerals help balance oil production, rescue blemished skin and provide the most natural of tones. Magic!
It’s available in three shades at the moment and is super easy to apply once you know how. Sprinkle a small amount of foundation into the lid of the pot, then cover your makeup brush - I like Antipodes’ matching natural hair kabuki brush - with foundation, and tap off excess before applying to your freshly moisturised skin in circular movements. For total skin perfection, simply layer more foundation on areas of concern, and you can even mix a little with rosehip oil to hydrate and cover dark circles and crepiness around the eyes.
Antipodes have also released an equally gorgeous complimentary product to covet called Antipodes Performance Plus Skin-Brightening Mineral Finishing Powder. A translucent, silky smooth powder, it maximises the length of time your make-up stays on, and minimises unwelcome shine and open pores by refining your complexion with a perfect matte finish. It also contains the magical Vinanza Performance Plus, and can be reapplied as often as you need throughout the day.
I’m a huge fan of mineral makeup and have tried pretty much every brand out there over the years and this is definitely one of the best - and a great reason to buy (and love) local.

Daily delight: Ali Lagarde for Grazia Paris

Monday, April 8, 2013

Love it: Dr. Hauschka Dear Eyes ltd ed makeup collection

I love Dr. Hauschka cosmetics for their advanced formulations that are entirely natural, and its latest limited edition makeup collection definitely doesn’t disappoint. Called Dear Eyes, it has - naturally - the windows to the soul as its focus, and is a concise collection that will work with pretty much any skin tone and can go as daytime or as dramatic as you please.
It’s essentially a subtle spring colour palette combined with dramatic, darker tones, and the star of the collection is the Dr. Hauschka Eyeshadow Palette Trio, which is my latest go-to palette for pretty much every day of the week. It’s made up of warm shades of sparkling nude, pearly rose and matte chocolate, making it a pretty damn foolproof lineup as well as insanely flattering. The soft, super wearable shades come housed in a sleek, rose gold compact (see above), which is a fresh look for the brand and one I fell in love with from the minute I popped the lid.
Also in the Dear Eyes line up is a new Volume Mascara and re-formulated black Kajal Eyeliner, plus eye definer and eyeshadow blender brushes. I’m a big fan already of the classic black Volume Mascara, which comes with a new, unique bendable wand that is designed to reach even the smallest corner lashes with ease, and the eyeliner glides on with pretty much zero drag, as well as being easy to smudge if you’re so inclined.
And because they are Hauschka, you know every product in the collection is also super kind on the eyes. Love it!

All about: the new L'Oréal Professionnel Get Dusty range

It seems that the word ‘texture’ is all I hear from the country’s - and the world’s - top hair stylists these days, signalling one hell of a trend that’s clearly not going anywhere in a hurry. It’s a trend that’s also highly achievable for almost any hair type when you’ve got the right products on hand, and the latest range from L'Oréal Professionnel - called Get Dusty - has three stellar examples that you need in your haircare arsenal right now.
Part of their techni.art range, Get Dusty is a small but perfectly formed range that caters for all hair types and is made up of my current obsession - dry shampoo and hair powders. The Fresh Dust Dry Shampoo is a little ripper, with highly oil-absorbent micro fibres to extend the life of your blow-dry or instantly refresh hair in between washes. It quickly lifts hair and scalp residue, is highly translucent and has a light floral scent that doesn’t overpower or linger too long like several other formulas I’ve tried over the past year.
For the Fine and Curly haired ladies, there is Texture Dust to give your delicate locks the oomph they need. Featuring a Force 1 hold, the powdered formula of Texture Dust allows you to create a full-bodied effect at the roots with lightweight movement through the ends i.e. the ultimate in just-got-out-of-bed hair. It comes in a nifty handbag size too, so you can chuck it in your carryall and apply as you need throughout the day or evening. For the Medium and Thick haired girls like me, Super Dust is for you. It has a Force 3 hold styling strength to help you get voluminous bombshell body and a lasting matte finish.
The latter two are also able to be mixed with serums or sprays for a combination of shine and hold, or paste for the defined, ‘piece-y’ look that is all over shorter styles this season.
Available right now, L’Oréal Professionnel Fresh Dust, Texture Dust Force 01 Styling Powder and Super Dust Force 03 Styling Powder all have an RRP of $33.00 and are well worth checking out.