LUST HAVE: Chanel’s Le Vernis Colour Illusions

It’s a while since I’ve done a lust have, but Chanel’s new Colour Illusions nail polish range is certainly lust worthy. There’s lots of buzz about these limited edition nail polishes and I can see why. These gorgeously shimmering and iridescent polished form part of Chanel’s Autumn 2011 line and are right on trend. AW 2011’s nails have a space age feel – shades of pewter, bronze, silver… basically anything earthy and metallic.

Available in three multi faceted and striking shades

QUARTZ  silvery taupe

GRAPHITE metallic gun metal grey

PERIDOT antiquue golden green

Unfortunately, at £17.50 they might have to remain a lust have, but watch out for copy cats popping up all over the high street.

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New Beauty Crush: Rosie Huntington-Whiteley

Girl of the moment Rosie Huntington-Whiteley, my new beauty, style and general all round girl crush.

When it comes to make up, Rosie knows what suits her and sticks to it – I love the simplicity of her make up. Her signature look centres around sultry smokey eyes and bronzed skin. Despite having the biggest and best lips in the business, Rosie doesn’t play up to them. I’d be tempted to colour in that pout all kinds of fuchsias and reds, but she keeps it simple with hues of nude and browny-pinks.

Here’s how to create the look.

Base

Her base is glowing and dewy. I’d imagine she starts off with a luminous primer like Clarin’s beauty flash balm then adds a subtle base colour, something like Chanel’s Vitalumiere Aqua foundation. With that flawless skin, I doubt she needs concealer, but a couple clicks of a highlighter or under eye concealer like YSL’s touché éclat will correct any dull areas – I think there’s evidence of some in the inner eye area – which works great to open and brighten the eye.

Cheeks

Not one for bright blushers, Rosie opts for bronzer and highlighter instead. Either she’s blessed with the most amazing cheekbones EVER or there’s some clever contouring going on here – I choose to believe it’s the later. Take a multi toned bronzing powder, something like Guerlain’s Terracota Four Seasons and contour the natural lines around your cheeks, forehead and chin. A dab of liquid highlighter on the top of cheek bones would accentuate the tan and draw attention to the chizzled features. Finish with a light dusting of a peachy/pink powder blush to add a touch of colour to apples of the cheeks.

Eyes

Brows are full and combed slightly upwards, which I love. For the smokey eye Rosie opt for gold and bronzey brown eye shadows rather than the standard black and greys. An eye quad or a palette would work best to mix and match for the shade that suits. I have a great one by Frontcover that contains some gorgeous bronzey hues. The intensity of the smokey eye varies – smudge shadow along the lid and up to the crease, if you’re feeling adventurous, take it higher up to the brow bone. Smudge some shimmery brown or bronze under the lower lash line and in the inner eye. Work in a brown or black eye liner.

For some added va-va-voom, a small kitten flick created with a gel or liquid liner looks very sexy. Finish with lashings of mascara.

Lips

Let’s face it, lips like that don’t need much dressing up. A smudge of Vaseline and they’re good to go! They’re generally kept natural, I really don’t think she wears much lipstick – maybe just a hint of sheer colour, something like a nude or dirty rose. She’s more a lipbalm kinda girl.

 WORD OF WARNING: Trying to recreate the look of one of the best looking women in the World, may lead to self esteem issues!

HOT NAILS: Barry M Nail Paint in Mushroom

The trend continues for rebellious colours (ones that shouldn’t work, but do) and my latest favourite is Barry M’s Mushroom. As a habitual pink varnish wearer, I never thought I’d see myself in a colour that could be described as muddy dishwater, but Mushroom is surprisingly elegant and very on trend.

What’s more, it’s a dead-ringer to Chanel’s uber chich (and expensive) 505 Particuliere polish.

 

Yet, at just £2.99, it’s a mere fraction of the price.

The quality of Barry M’s Nail Paints is surprisingly good. The consistency is quite thin and very easy to apply. It dries quickly and lasts well. For best results use an under and top coat as well as two coats of Mushroom.

Right now get 2 Barry M nail paints for £5 at Boots.

Top 5 Foundations for Dry skin and with Dewy finish

This post has now been updated with NEW additions – see it on my new blog here http://beautyandlechicblog.blogspot.com

I’ve had a few questions recently from people wanting to know what foundation I use and which ones are best for dewy skin. Looking for the perfect foundation is like searching for the perfect jeans… a long, pain saking and expensive experience, but when you find the right ones, it can be hugely rewarding. It’s such an important thing to get right, I know, I’ve spent years trying. I have dry skin and suffer occasional breakouts. I like a foundation that provides a light to medium coverage, with a natural dewy finish. Some people find one good foundation and stick to it, but I prefer to have a selection, you wouldn’t only have one pair of jeans would you? And with new products and technology you never know what you might be missing. Our skin is constantly changing, as do my foundations.

Here’s my (current) Top 5

1.  Mac Mineralize Satin Finish Foundation £22.20

My favourite foundations change from time to time depending on the condition of my skin, the time of year etc, but this one’s been my number one since it was released. It’s a fluid foundation that blends the natural light-reflecting properties of micro-minerals to create a smooth satin finish. Provides a low-to-medium,yet buildable coverage with a slightly luminous finish. It instantly improved my complexion; skin appears radiant, healthy, re- energized. Contains vitamins A, C and E to help nurture and condition the skin. Good for all skin types, especially normal-dry, which is why I love it. Easy to apply with fingers or brush (I prefer brush) and best finished with a dusting of Mac Mineralize Skinfinish Natural Powder.

Best for: Dry Skin, great for day time

2.  Clinique Supermoisture Foundation £21

This one’s great, especially in the summer I find. The texture is thicker than Mac’s Satin finish, but the formula is light weight. It’s perfect for a dewy glow, I feel like it moisturisers my face all day, although it helps to keep a little finishing powder to hand so you don’t glow too much. Light coverage, soft and radiant looking. Apply with fingers for a more sheer finish.

Best for:  A light, dewy finish

3.  Laura Mercier Creme Smooth Foundation £41.50

This one’s expensive, and it knows it. Released last year it’s super creamy and luxurious, thick, yet lightweight once applied and does not set. You will get a high, yet natural coverage with a noticeable dewy.  It’s super luxurious, but not the type I’d use daily.

Best for: Dry and older Skins £23

4.  Mac Studio Sculpt Foundation £23

My go to foundation when my skin’s in bad condition. It’s a creamy, luxurious, gel-based foundation that provides medium, to high coverage. It is fairly thick, but doesn’t look cakey and doesn’t set. It’s very hydrating, leaves skin looking soft, smooth and slightly dewy, plus a little goes a long way.

Best for: Skin that needs extra coverage, great for evening/longwear.

5.  Chanel Vitalumiere Satin Smoothing Fluid Make up £31.66

Firmly positioned in the foundation hall of fame, it’s the go to make up for many celebrities and make up artist, frequently winning best foundation accolades. It’s the nearest you’ll come to skin in a bottle, but the coverage is a little too sheer for me – perfect if you’re blessed with a clear complexion. The light texture of Vitalumiere Fluid gives a slightly satin finish for a radiant natural youthful looking makeup. On the downside, Chanels colour range is quite limited.

Best for: Light weight, natural coverage  

Also highly recommended is Boujois Healthy Mix, Armani Luminous Silk Foundation, YSL Perfect Touch and Gosh Natural Touch Foundation.

This post has now been updated with NEW additions – see it on my new blog here

http://beautyandlechicblog.blogspot.com/

Paris Fashion Week Top Beauty Trends A/W 11-12

As the curtains close on Paris fashion week, it marks the end of the craziest, busiest, most manic weeks on the fashion calendar. Alas, the fashionistas can breathe a sigh of relief, done for another 6 months, well not quite, but the shows are. So amidst the drama what did those chic Parisians showcase as their top beauty trends for A/W11?

Pink Lips

Top of the agenda, and much to my delight is Pink. Oh I looooove pink. For so long we’ve been buzzing about corals, reds, burgundys, basically everything but pink. Back with a bang in Paris was medium, soft pretty pinks -think  candy, salmon and pastel.

Nina Ricci stole the show with the prettiest pinks around.

New Season Eye

From the pretty to the powerful. We’ve seen this at each fashion week, which translates into.. this WILL be big next season and you MUST start wearing your eye shadow this way! I’m still not convinced I’ll be applying eyeshadow all the way to the brows anytime soon, but never say never.

Eyes were dramatic at, dare we say John Galiano.

And Chanel

Minimal

In a season full of brights and bolds it’s nice to see the return of the barely there make up look. Dewy skin, pale lips and strong brows were on the menu at McCartney and as we know where Stella leads, other follow. Pretty, ladylike beauty was the perfect contradiction to the masculine tailoring she showcased.

 

Pretty and feminine was also the trend du jour at Chanel and Chloe. Eyes were a little more dramatic, but the principle was the same – pretty, polishes and chic. What else would you expect?

 

Suprising audiences at Paris was….

Kate Moss walking for Louis Vuitton

And finally, stealing the show in Paris was…

GaGa, walking for Thierry Mugler in a collection that could have been made for her. Showing that what she lacks in height, she makes up in heels.

Rocky Horror or just plain Horror?

£2K a year on Make Up?

Any woman worth her Chanel lipstick will tell you that looking good don’t come cheap. A study this week reveals that British women spend over £133K in their lifetime on beauty products and treatments…. Averaging out at £2K a year, that’s some lotions and potions.

So, in the words of Carrie Bradshaw… “I got to thinking” do I spend that much? More? Less? Is it really worth it?

One hour, a couple broken nails and a lot of mess later, I discovered that I’m well on my way….

And this is just make up, I could fill another dining table with creams, toiletries and nail varnishes.

I must admit, I didn’t realise how much I had. Seeing it piled up like that, it does look very indulgent. In these tough times people may call it wasteful, even selfish, but Make Up is my only vice! Shoes, hair, nights out, nothing else floats my boat like cosmetics. I love trying it, buying it, applying it, merchandising it and now, writing about it.

So for now, I won’t be guilted out of it. Make up can empower you, make you look and feel a million dollars. On an “I’m feeling bad about myself” day a couple clicks of touch eclat and a dusting of four seasons, and suddenly the World’s a better place. Plus, in my mind sharing it with you makes it an investment!

And if that’s not enough, in the words of LOreal … Because we’re worth it!