Tom Ford has been at it again, creating high glamour, super sexy products that make you want to Collect Them All. It might take you awhile though with his latest lipstick collection called Lips and Boys – which features 50 (50!!) miniature lipsticks in a dazzling array of colours. From violets to perfect nudes, golden metallics to classic reds this collection has literally any colour that a girl could want. And why boys? Well they’re named after men that have inspired Tom Ford in his life, which is super-cute I have to say. And about the only reason I would wear a lipstick called Collin.
Happy New Year, y’all! I’m so pleased it’s 2015 – I love a bright, shiny new year full of exciting possibilities. I’m writing this from the beach. You might think I’m lucky enough to have scored a Caribbean vacation for my Christmas present, but no! My Christmas present was I moved across from the beach. Although at the time moving before Christmas seemed like really bad timing, now we’re here and it’s summer in Sydney and it really is like Paradise.
So apologies for the lack of posts towards the end of last year – a perfect storm of work, packing, moving and Christmas plus the end of the school year for my son meant that MM HQ (and my brain) was shut down early.
However! I’m now beauty blogging literally from the sand, so I thought I would give you a round-up of my favourite new beach products I’ve been testing over the holidays. So with sandy toes and a happy heart, I give you my picks from Paradise:
Lancome Flash Bronzer Self-Tanning Face Gel - This is sunshine in a bottle. It gives a perfect, subtle facial tan that is ideal to boost your face colour to match it to your body when you’ve been on the Tan Train every day like me at present. It smells divine and gives you just the right shade of bronze to make you feel like a Victoria’s Secret Swim girl, without veering into Oompa Looma territory. And for those readers who are currently swaddled in jumpers in the Northern hemisphere, it will give you the kiss of life your skin (I’m sorry to say) probably urgently needs right now.
EVOHE Repair Intensive Cream – this 100% natural moisturizer has been soothing my sun-parched skin after a long day at the beach. I know as a makeup artist I’m supposed to say to avoid the sun like the plague, but I have to tell you I’ve been a real sun bunny since the move. I even confess I’ve had a touch of sunburn some afternoons after an extended play in the waves, so this soothing Australian-made cream has anti-inflammatory properties and a big moisture boost for when I’ve just had too much sun exposure (ahem).
Bobbi Brown Long Wear Gel Sparkle in Smoky Topaz – I love this cream shadow/liner for a hazy wash of taupe that’s like your lids, but better. You can use it as a liner or a shadow and it really is budge-proof. Perfect for when you want a little something a la plage without looking like you’re trying too hard. (Because if you can’t relax at the beach, when can you?)
YSL Babydoll Kiss and Blush in #7 Corail Affranch is the perfect toss in your beach bag blush. First off, it has a tiny hint of shimmer to make you look magically alive, the coral works perfectly with your new tan (thanks to your new Lancome Flash Bronzer), and it doubles as a sheer lip stain as well.
Revlon ColorStay Waterproof Eyebrow Liner in Blonde. This season, it’s still all about the brows, and being at the beach is no excuse for scrubby, scrappy eyebrows. I’ve been using the Blonde version of this all through summer to shape my brows. I love it because it’s waterproof so it holds up in the heat and humidity and even through the odd swim, and it has a little spooly brush at one end so it’s perfect to throw in your makeup bag if you need on the go touch ups. The colour is good (although I would like it even more if it was half a shade more to the grey side, as I do prefer ashy colours in brows. It can all get a bit Bozo the Clown if the shades are too warm). However the formula is SO GOOD that I can forgive the slightly russet tone.
Bumble and Bumble Surf Spray – ah Bumble and Bumble, where would my hair be with you? Stuck in an 80’s metal band, that’s where. This is pretty much the only range I use in my kit and on myself as their products are good enough for amazing hairdressers (like Neil Moodie and James Pecis, who use them on the shows every season), and simple enough for non-hairdressers like myself to get great results from. This spray mimics the feel of your hair when it’s just out of the surf, without the sand, crunchy bits, stringy sections or nasty flat centre part you get when you actually do emerge out of the surf. Spray it in to wet or dry hair and you have instant, beach textured amazing hair.
It’s the right version of natural – the beach Paradise version.
Isabeli Fontana showing us her Copcabana-girl glow.
So Karl Lagerfeld’s cat has a makeup collection. And it’s amazing. First off, you need to meet Karl Lagerfeld’s actual cat, Choupette (can we just have a moment to reflect on the genius play on words? Chou in French is a pet name – like ‘darling’. Our lovely French au pair Julie in London used to call my son “mon petit chou”.) So Choupette is already a dangerously cute name for a very cute cat. And THEN Mr Lagerfeld has spliced that with a bit of loveliness from the brilliant Japanese makeup company, Shu Uemura, and you have Choupette’s new makeup line, Shupette. Let me reiterate, a makeup collection based on a cat. Which combines my two favourite things in the world, makeup and small fluffy animals. Life doesn’t get any better than that.
The collection even has Karl Lagerfeld’s drawings of Choupette/Shupette on it (although we don’t buy makeup for the packaging. Do we? Do we??) It’s the new Holiday collection and the campaign images have been shot by Karl, with needless to say the gorgeous Choupette and the also not too shabby Josephine Skriver.
I’m currently in love with the cream blusher Rouge Bonbon Fantasy Trio in 02 which is burning a hole in my kit and jumping out on every job lately – it’s gorgeous on clients for the red carpet and equally at home flushing cheeks on beach shoots. It has a transparent, weightless finish which I’m sorry, leaves my beloved Stila creams in the dust, making them look positively heavy and old fashioned (sorry Stila – I do love you. And I haven’t really permanently gone off your Convertible Colours – it’s just your place has currently been usurped by Shupette.)
There are three colours in the lip and cheek trio – a bright candy pink, a sheer red and a deep fuchsia pink. They are so beautiful, providing a transparent wash of colour that just lifts the face. For those in colder climes they will give your winter pallor that holiday glow, and for those in Australia, I can tell you right now that pretty much nothing looks better with a tan.
Here’s a video of the very cute Choupette-cam so you can have a look at the life of the world’s most pampered kitty. And yes, it’s guaranteed that her life is more glam than yours.
And behind the scenes of the impossibly cute campaign
Sephora is here! I never thought I would live to see that day that the beauty giant Sephora (owned by the luxury fashion and beauty juggernaut, LVMH), arrived in Australia. Its doors opened this morning and it’s pretty safe to say it will be packed with beauty-hungry shoppers up until Christmas, (and after, if I know my fellow citizens well).
It carries many brands we haven’t had in Australia before, and in fact many amazing brands I used to stock up on when overseas, like Tarte, and Make Up For Ever. I’m also eager to try out Marc Jacobs new line (overseen by the watchful creative eyes of MM fave, global makeup artist Diane Kendal), and the new organic range, Bite Beauty. They also have Sephora’s own range of brushes and makeup, and I can tell you right now it’s the perfect way to re-stock your brushes and bits and pieces like sponges, tweezers and nail things.
Check out Diane Kendal in this video showing you the Marc Jacobs Smoky Vamp look (as featured on the extraordinary first Marc Jacobs Beauty campaign image with the lovely Edie Campbell). I know where my Christmas present money is going…
Since its inception in 1964, the Pirelli calendar has been the gold standard of pinup calendars. No longer the province of ropey topless chicks straddling a motorcycle in dusty garages, it’s shot by one of the world’s best photographer every year, and uses the most beautiful models in the world. The final calendar is sent to a tiny handful of Pirelli’s best customers and VIP clients. It has always been kept under wraps and been the province of a very small, very select group of people.
But now, with the advent of the internet, it’s not so secretive anymore. Here is a 30 minute documentary on the making of this year’s Pirelli calendar, shot by arguably the most influential fashion photographer of our time, Steven Meisel. And the makeup in the calendar (‘cause let’s face it, this is MakeupMole, which is ALL ABOUT THE MAKEUP, even when there’s naked supermodels involved) is Pat McGrath’s usual perfection. If you ever wanted to see Joan Smalls as a latex boxer Belle de Jour fantasy fetish girl, now is your chance!
I think by now you might have figured out that I am not a drugstore gal. Of course there’s always some stuff there that’s worth checking out (like mascaras, and lipsticks, and the odd nail polish). Although there are loads of good drugstore products – with the economic heft of global cosmetic giants like Procter & Gamble and L’Oreal they’re always going to be on top of the new technology,
so lots of their stuff is great now. And if you let me loose in a French pharmacy, well that’s a different thing entirely. I’m practically in there with a bulldozer, ripping up Crealine and Embryolisse and Honeoplasmine, not to mention Evian and Avene Water and La Roche Posay everything. (Get your hard hats on boys, she’s coming in!)
But drugstores in Australia, not so much. Do you want to know why?
Because Australian drugstores have missed the memo on why people shop there, and that reason is price. It’s supposed to be cheap fellas. Mascaras in Australian pharmacies cost $27 (L’Oreal), Revlon eyeshadow quads are $25, Max Factor lipgloss is $20. I know all my US readers are passing out right about now – products cost about 4-5 times more in Australia than in America. For the exact same thing. So you know what? I often figure I’d rather spend the extra amount and get a premium product for a bit more (OK quite a bit more – Chanel quads are about $100. But it’s like, you know, Chanel. HELLO.)
So the other day when I checked out Maybelline Baby Lips Lip Glow, needing a new lip balm with SPF for my poor model who was going to fry the following day at the beach on a 31 degree day beach shoot, I was very pleasantly surprised. The price was right ($3.60 – jeez, I can’t even get a coffee for that these days in Sydney), and the product was a surprisingly good dupe for Dior’s Lip Glow, which is currently on my wish list as it’s just a gorgeous rose hued lip balm. And I think we all know YOU CAN NEVER HAVE TOO MANY OF THOSE.
So in my kit it went and it kept my lovely model’s lips moisturized and sun protected and with just the perfect amount of twinkly sheen, all day long. So the next time you want a coffee, get a Baby Lips lip balm instead. It will last a whole lot longer than that caffeine.
Just when you thought you couldn’t POSSIBLY need another black eyeliner product in your handbag, along comes Burberry’s new eyeliner pens to change your mind. Burberry have to have one of the best marketing strategies I’ve ever seen – their ads and campaigns are always beautiful, always on brand and feature gorgeous English models, like this one with Suki Waterhouse who is the perfect modern 60’s muse.
Just when you thought there couldn’t POSSIBLY be anymore room in the world for another beauty brand, along comes the new Gucci Beauty range. And I have to say, it’s got me intrigued.
Part of the Procter and Gamble stable, it is thus under the aegis of mega makeup artist Pat McGrath who is the Creative Director (and also helped create the Dolce and Gabbana range, which is another P&G brand). And you know if it’s got Pat McGrath’s input, it’s probably gonna be pretty damn good.
This is the beautiful new Gucci campaign video starring Charlotte Casiraghi (of Monaco, don’t you know – and Grace Kelly’s grand-daughter. Apart from being supermodel gorgeous, she’s a champion horse rider. And a royal. AS YOU DO).
Gucci get extra points for using my favourite Sia track of all time ‘Breathe Me’ in their first ad. And I for one can’t wait to get my sticky paws on that red lipstick. High-octane glamour – what else would you expect from Gucci?