Wednesday, February 20, 2019

Daily delight: Amber Heard for Wonderland magazine

Love it: the Angela Caglia La Vie En Rose Face Roller

From you minute you open the box and see this beauty nestled in its silk/satiny-y nest, you know you are in possession of something special. It’s the Angela Caglia La Vie En Rose Face Roller, and it is as beautiful to use as it is to look at!
Celebrity facialist Angela Caglia (above) has been called the “Hollywood Glow Girl”, and she has challenged her energy of late into creating a concise collection of small batch and responsibly sourced skincare that delivers luminous and age-defying results. The collection is a mix of chic, sustainable and clean, which makes it highly covetable from the moment you lay eyes on its European black glass packaging.
Rolling is a centuries-old technique used to de-puff, boost circulation and redefine the contours of your face, and it’s a modality that Caglia has harnessed over her two decades plus time in the industry. Her roller is made from ethically sourced Rose Quartz, and is designed to help drain fluid and improve elasticity, resulting in bright and healthy looking skin. 
Used alone or alongside your favourite oils, moisturisers and serums, this beautiful to use tool is now an essential in my skincare arsenal. In this humidity it has been amazing storing my roller in the fridge for a cooling, indulgent, at-home treatment, and it has made major in roads when it comes to dealing with morning puffy eyes. I roll in soft, upward and outward strokes on the neck and face, sometimes all the way down to my collarbone. You can also drop it in a warm (not hot) cup of water for a few seconds and use it to enhance the penetration of your favourite face oil, which feels even more indulgent.
At $112 this Angela Caglia roller may be a bit pricier than the cheap jade rollers offered online, but if you want to invest in taking your #selfcare to a whole new level?  Then this is one very attractive proposition that will help you do just that.
Next on my Angela Caglia wishlist from Mecca Cosmetica is the Power Cleansing Balm, a luxurious cleansing balm with a unique whipped texture that I’ve been doing lots of research about online. Loaded with super-antioxidant meadowfoam seed oil to soften the look of fine lines and wrinkles and a blend of rose, chamomile, vitamin E and shea butter to soften, hydrate and boost radiance, it sounds like exactly what post-summer skin needs. Preserved in a UV-protected, black-violet glass jar with sustainable, recycled packaging it also looks absolutely amazing.
Angela Caglia is available exclusively in New Zealand at MECCA, and online at

Tuesday, February 19, 2019

Daily delight: Jasmine Tookes for Victoria’s Secret 'Bombshell Wild Flower'

Love it: rms beauty's new Luminising Powder

Celebrity makeup artist and the organic beauty mogul behind rms beauty , Rose-Marie Swift has been a make-up artist for over 35 years, so when I was given the chance to get up close and personal with her a couple of years ago I was beyond excited. 
Swift’s work has been featured in Vogue (French, Italian, American, Nippon, China, Russian) W, Harper's Bazaar, I.D., Self Service, V, Allure, Numéro, Marie Claire, Glamour, Interview, and Elle. Her make-up has appeared in ads for the likes of Diane Von Furstenberg, Calvin Klein, Ralph Lauren and Louis Vuitton, and her photographic partners over the years include Mario Sorrenti, Peter Lindbergh, David Simms, Annie Leibovitz, Arthur Elgort, and Patrick Demarchelier. The words “industry legend” have been bandied about, and with good reason.
She visited New Zealand for the first time when we met as a guest of Mecca Cosmetica, who stock her products exclusively Down Under. After us she was flying to Australia and then on to Los Angeles, where she was to be a guest at supermodel Miranda Kerr’s wedding to tech mogul Evan Spiegel. I spent a morning speaking to her about her unique approach to makeup, which has that ever-elusive “glow” as its end goal, and came away with so many beauty hacks I felt like my brain was going to explode!
Clearly one smart cookie, the ageless beauty also gives some great insight into natural and organic beauty solutions, stressing that we mustn’t be so affected by marketing, product claims and brand names: “just get cleaner makeup”. All of which bring me to her line, rms beauty. It is essentially an original, pure, organic colour cosmetic line that performs and then some. Based on living and organic principles, each product is created to hydrate and illuminate vital, radiant skin and is the perfect choice for your best ever ‘natural’ look. rms beauty  is dedicated to transforming the way women use makeup, creating a product that is not only non-toxic, but actually heals and nourishes skin. Consider it skincare with mineral colour - giving make-up a whole new meaning.
rms beauty already makes the most beauty editor-approved highlighter on the planet in the form of the legendary Living Luminiser, which I have been using in various shades since meeting its creator and absolutely adore. So it was with EXTREME excitement that I greeted news that the all-natural beauty brand has released a powder version of its popular highlighter in three shades: Grande Dame, a pale champagne; Midnight Hour (above), a beige, warm peach; and Madeira Bronzer, a shimmering, cool-toned bronze. Having played with two of the three shades now I am totally hooked, and what I love most is the fact that the powders are so finely milled that the finish is sublimely subtle, but you can build them to be as blindingly strobed as you like.
The silky smooth, luminising powders challenge traditional formulas in that they are refreshingly non-drying and will actually enhance your skin to create a luxurious highlight. They leave your skin moisturised and radiant, and their light never dulls.
Those in the know recommend that you apply them using the rms beauty Luminising Powder Brush, and after trying a few different options, I have to agree. Designed with perfectly angled bristles and retractable, it precisely applies powder highlighter to illuminate features and give dimension to the face. It is also 100 per cent vegan, and made of the safest highest-quality synthetic hairs. I have found that loading just a little product on the brush is the best way to start, then layer up as need be depending on how deep with pigment you want to go.
So there you have it – amazing. The rms beauty Luminising Powders and Brush will be available exclusively at Mecca Cosmetica and online at from 26th February 2019. 

Daily delight: Natalie Portman for Miss Dior

NYFW hair how to: Eugene Souleiman and ghd for Dion Lee AW19

Ponytail perfection - with a twist...
The above quote perfectly sums up the hair look created by the legendary Eugene Souleiman for Dion Lee’s AW19 collection, which took to the runway at the recent NYFW to rave reviews. Offering up traditional, flawless tailoring combined with experimental, influential design, Dion Lee has honed his craft to perfection over the years, and this collection was no different.
It was Lee’s own idea of always designing with people in mind that inspired Souleiman, who said: “when it came to creating the hair looks, I didn’t really think about the collection… I thought about the girl who would be wearing the clothes, who the collection was designed for. That was my inspiration.” The end result was a line up of styles that were tough, cool, and refined all at once - and although the hair looks gave the appearance of being simple, the techniques that went into them were anything but. “It’s not simple, it’s not quick, it’s not done in haste,” says Eugene, “it’s very refined and very specific in the techniques used.” The hair is pulled back into what looks like a standard low ponytail from the front, but is actually off-centre, and although the hair is pulled into a bun, it is a bun with a ‘twist’. Comb marks give a feel of toughness and masculinity, creating styles that were “tougher… more assertive, slightly aggressive.”
To get the look at home, follow these steps as per Souleiman himself:
1. Crafting the look begins with the hair being cleanly split into two sections – one at the top of the head and one at the bottom. The hair from the lower section is then pulled back into the low, ever so slightly left off centre ponytail, and completely (and liberally) sprayed with Wella Professionals EIMI Mystify Me Strong to give it a tight appearance. 
2. Once the lower section of hair had the desired texture, attention is turned to the top section. First, a ghd platinum+ styler is used to smooth the hair – this is essential to give the ponytail its sleek and tight appearance. 
3. Next, a fine-toothed comb is pulled back through the hair, from the front to the off-centre point at the back of the head where the sections meet, and the outcome is that of someone running their fingers through their hair. 
4. Once the top and bottom sections have come together, the ponytail is secured using black elastic, the length of it twisted and then twisted again in an upward direction as if (in Eugene’s words) it “recoils on itself”, before it is pinned to the head. 
5. The fact that the hair is supposed to look natural means that it is imperative that it does not look wet in any way. A ghd air hairdryer was vital when it came to perfecting each style. Once the twist was complete, a diffuser was used in conjunction with the ghd air to visibly soften the hair. 
6. The final touches to the look were in the form of headbands: one of which is plain and rakes through the hair, emphasising the grooves left by the comb. 

Monday, February 18, 2019

Daily delight: Gemma Ward for Sunday-Times Style

Beauty news: the iconic Laura Mercier to launch at MECCA!

I am very excited to announce that the iconic Laura Mercier makeup brand will be making its debut in New Zealand on February 26th, when it launches at MECCA! The collection is full of multi award winning beauty saviours, many of which I’ve picked up on trips overseas and fallen instantly in love with.
For those unfamiliar with her story, Mercier (above) is an internationally celebrated makeup artist and formulator with many years in the industry under her belt. Raised in Provence, France, she enrolled in painting school in Paris at age 17. With some coaxing from her mother, she decided to shift her talents to a new canvas, and started attending the prestigious Carita Beauty Institute, specialising in makeup application. 
A diligent student with an innate eye for makeup artistry, Laura excelled in her classes and subsequently represented Carita as a makeup artist and makeup teacher, working closely with renowned makeup artist Thibault Vabre. In the mid-1980s Laura moved to the United States and began a revolutionary career in the magazine industry, working on the launch of American ELLE and editorial spreads for Allure, Vanity Fair, Glamour, W, and InStyle, among many others. 
In 1996 she launched Laura Mercier Cosmetics, and the brand became synonymous with creating great, healthy looking skin.  As an innovator, Laura changed the makeup industry forever with her introduction of the first foundation primer to create the perfect canvas for makeup application. Those who work closely with Laura know that she is deeply passionate about the idea of a ‘no makeup’, radiant glow - or bonne mine in French. 
Laura Mercier products are lauded throughout the industry and have won numerous awards, including the Tinted Moisturiser (my personal fave), which is frequently named in Best of Beauty Awards around the world.  Available in 19 shades, it’s a sheer coverage multitasker for a healthy, no-makeup look with a super flattering, natural dewy finish. The lightweight, moisturising formula adds a soft hint of colour that evens and enhances skin without hiding it, making it what we want to be wearing come the weekend.
Secret Camouflage (below) is another hero, and takes the the form of a full coverage concealer that leaves skin looking natural and flawless. Laura's original creation and an absolute must-have in any artist's kit, it has more pigment than a traditional concealer and is super longwearing.
So, bring on February 26 – and start saving those pennies now!

Wednesday, February 13, 2019

Daily delight: Gigi Hadid for Tom Ford SS19

Hair how to: Jennifer Lopez at the 61st Annual Grammy Awards, by ghd

The standout ponytail of the Grammys most definitely went to Jennifer Lopez, who had her super-long cascading locks pulled perfectly back into a glossy low version of what can sometimes be a very pedestrian style.
Not for J-Lo though, and luxe are and lush are the words I’d use to describe this flawless look. A swept-back, low pony tied at the nape, it reached halfway down Lopez's famous behind and was the very epitome of chic, understated style. At the very end of the ponytail there was just a soft, sexy curl - no crazy volume, no hair accessories, just truly luxe locks.
Hair stylist to the stars Chris Appleton (who also styles pony lovers Kim Kardashian and Ariana Grande’s hair) created the look, which is easy to create at home – with or without some seriously expensive hair extensions.
To get the look using tools by ghd, according to Appleton himself…
1. When the hair was wet, I dried it straight using the ghd air hairdryer. 
2. Then I took sections of her hair and curled using the ghd curve soft curl tong 
3. Once the hair cooled, I used the ghd air hairdryer again and a ghd natural bristle radial brush in size 4 to smooth the hair and create a luxurious wave. 
4. I then tied her hair into a ponytail and wrapped a piece of hair around the band.
5. To finish the look, I spritzed hair spray to stick down any flyaways and make the hair appear healthy and glossy. We placed the hat on and the look was complete!

Daily delight: Cardi B for Harper's Bazaar US

Hair how to: Lady Gaga at the 61st Annual Grammy Awards, using ghd

Winning three awards and wearing over 100 carats of diamonds, there’s no way you could’ve missed Lady Gaga’s latest look at the 2019 Grammys. 
Stunning in silver sequin Celine by Hedi Slimane, the actress and her long-term hairstylist, Frederic Aspiras, opted for a simple, textured hair look that was inspired by her character in ‘A Star is Born’. “Inspired by rock star culture and Gaga’s character “Ally” from the movie ‘A Star is Born’, we opted for a more lived-in look,” said Aspiras, “with lots of texture while keeping the hair healthy and soft. I also experimented with two types of waves to give a more signature look.”
On the red carpet, Gaga offset her loose waves with a 91-carat diamond necklace that took more than a year to create and a set of ten-carat princess-cut Tiffany earrings, which is probably harder for most of us to recreate at home than the killer hair look!
Using tools by ghd, Aspiras gives us the low down…
1. First, apply heat protectant to the hair and brush using ghd detangling comb to evenly distribute the product to each section. Section hair into four sections.
2. Next, I grabbed my ghd air hairdryer and used a ghd paddle brush to blow dry hair downwards, leaving minimal volume at root. (To stay true to Ally’s look, he focused on minimising volume throughout).
3. Then, I created two types of waves/curl by using two different irons. The first iron I used was the ghd platinum+ styler to create wide flat ‘S’ waves throughout the hair. 
4. I then used the ghd curve soft curl tong  to ‘curl and slide’ the hair to create a different type of wave/curl. The two textures of waves/curls gave it a more natural, ‘lived in’ look.
5. After, I spritzed texturizing spray all over hair while shaking out the waves with my fingers. 6. Finish the look by running oil through the ends of the hair and leaving the rest untouched to maintain the the texture.

Tuesday, February 12, 2019

Daily delight: Lily-Rose Depp for Vogue Australia

Beauty news: Go-To to join the MECCA beauty stable

When I heard five years ago that former Mamamia beauty writer and author of Amazing Face, Zoë Foster Blake had launched her very own skincare line, I just knew she would be a goodie. After all, people in the position of trying/reviewing/writing about beauty prods get to experience the worst of the worst and the best of the best, so if you had the power to create your own it would be pretty much bang on what you yourself wanted to use… and the best brands come from personal need.
Anyway, Foster Blake’s line is called Go-To, and is made of a collection of her essentials for a great skin that I absolutely love.
Until now, it has only been available online for New Zealand beauty freaks, but that is all set to change as it arrives at MECCA come April 2019! “I first met Jo (Horgan) and the MECCA gang 15 years ago and I have always been so impressed with their edit, their forecasting, their focus ob education, and above all, their wonderful staff,” Zoë says. “I love shopping there, I love the pace, prestige and excitement MECCA brings our beauty industry, and I could not be more proud that soon, Go-To will be on their shelves.”
I’m already such a huge fan of Go-To’s Face Hero and Exceptionoil, and can’t wait to finally get to try the rest of the much hyped AND much loved collection. Go-To has been officially credited by Choose Cruelty Free Limited as a trusted cruelty-free company, and as such will accompany MECCA’s ever-growing Mindful Beauty Category.
Go-To will be launching into all MECCA stores, as well as online at in April, 2019. 

Monday, February 11, 2019

Daily delight: Gigi Hadid for ELLE magazine

All about: Kiehl’s new Love Oil For Lips

Reportedly inspired by the 1960s Summer of Love, Kiehl’s new Love Oil For Lips takes the brand’s already-solid devotion to lush lips to a whole new level.
Lightweight lip oils designed to boost moisture for softer, smoother smackers, this beautiful formula hydrates and nourishes lips whilst leaving them with a luscious shine and smooth, natural-looking glow.
Formulated with a luxurious blend of Coconut Oil, Moringa Oil and Acerola Cherry Extract, they bridge the gap between colour and care by lending a hint of super flattering colour along with some serious moisture boosting action. They were designed to be worn alone or to be layered on top of your favourite lip formula, and the ones I’ve been playing with have proven to be a godsend on days at the beach and the events that have rolled out after. By day I’ve layered them on top of the brand’s Butterstick Lip Treatment SPF 30 for sun protection with a twist, then at night over my favourite mattes for a summery finish.
On counter on February 18 and available in Untinted or with a hint of colour in Botanical Blush, Neon Pink, Apothecary Cherry and Midnight Orchid, you apply them by squeezing a drop onto your fingertip or smoothing directly onto the lips. Apply liberally throughout the day and watch them work their magic!

Monday, February 4, 2019

Daily delight: Rita Ora for Giuseppe Zanotti

Love it: YSL Beauty Black Opium Eau de Parfum Intense

"The iconic darkness of black coffee. The magical aura of blue absinthe. The thrill of a new overpowering desire…"

Beginning with the evocative quote above, YSL Beauty has just dropped a truly addictive new addition to the Black Opium Family in the form of the unabashedly sexy new Black Opium Eau de Parfum Intense.
An electrifying and bold interpretation of the iconic Black Opium signature, it was created by perfumers Nathalie Lorson, Marie Salamagne, Honorine Blanc and Olivier Cresp, and the team effort is an absolute winner.
The perfumers say they were inspired by the essence of blue absinthe, first and foremost. A green-blue liqueur, flavoured with wormwood, anis, and aromatic herbs, it has a controversial reputation and is even banned in some countries for its legendary hallucinatory powers. Combined with anis and sweet blue boysenberry, it forms the key top note for Black Opium Eau de Parfum Intense. It has an intense, raw quality about it that draws you in, whilst at the heart of the fragrance is jasmine sambac absolute, which fuses with orange blossom absolute in a seductive, sensual, warm exotic accord. At the base is the iconic coffee note that underpins every Black Opium incarnation. It’s joined by liquorice, sandalwood and vanilla for a creamy-rich bottom note that is warm, sultry and the perfect way to end a seriously sexy fragrance. At first I wondered if scent would be too intense for some, but I was wrong. Although a little heady for the steaming hot days we are experiencing in New Zealand right now, it’s perfect for after hours and for use once the mercury drops.
Superstar face Zoë Kravitz makes a welcome return to the world of YSL Beauty as the face of Black Opium Eau de Parfum Intense, and it’s a match made in heaven. The campaign film is shot by Jonas Lindstroem, the photographer and director known for his work with singer Kendrick Lamar as well as the likes of Calvin Klein, Kenzo and Adidas. It also sees Presley Gerber, the son of Cindy Crawford, making an appearance.  The print campaign has been shot by Tyrone Lebon and as you can see above, it is equally as gorgeous.
This beauty lands on counter on February 18 and I predict it will be a runaway hit.