So imagine my excitement when I found out that Lancome is going to be collaborating with one of my favourite designers, Alber Elbaz for Lanvin! I can only imagine how gorgeous this collaboration will be.
Having worked for the house of Lanvin in Paris on one of their first men’s advertising campaigns (super hairstylist James Rowe was doing hair, and I was doing grooming), I have a very soft spot in my heart for Alber Elbaz’s elegant and refined version of womanhood.
“Alber Elbaz is, without a doubt, one of the world’s most influential fashion designers. But beyond that, he is also the most talented, explains Youcef S. Nabi, Lancôme President. His sense of luxury, his vision of femininity and that hint of audacity resonate perfectly with the new values of the Maison Lancôme. We are extremely proud and happy that, with us, he is set to channel his universe into the world of make-up for the very first time.”
The new Alber Elbaz for Lancome collection will be unveiled worldwide on June 15th, 2013, and I for one, can’t wait.
In the meantime here’s a fab backstage video, an oldie but a goodie from 2009, of the Lanvin Autumn/Winter show. This still looks amazing with Guido’s blunt cut long bobs and Pat McGrath’s shiny metallic black-rimmed eyes. I also love the interview with Alber where he talks about loving your differences, and being sick of uniformity and the clone-like nature of modern fashion. Still relevant, four years on.
I hate you Tom Ford – you keep creating gorgeous new products that I just feel I can’t live without. How is that even possible when I have a whole room full of makeup, and yet, each season you come out with yet another slew of beautiful goodies that I can’t get out of my head.
Case in point – the new Fall 2012 collection. Exhibit A – the Emerald Lust eyequad. Since I’ve been getting back into brights in a big way, would I like a beautiful teal and emerald quad? Oh yes alright then, I would – especially as I think the Tom Ford eyeshadow quads are amongst the best out there in shade selection, pigment pay off and blendability. And you also have a gorgeous plummy brown quad do you? Oh, you don’t say. Throw that in the bag too then. I also like that the eyeshadows have matte shades and also amazing fine gaugue glitter shadows in the same quad. SO good for evening makeup!
And what’s that new cream eyeshadow? You know I think his cream eyeshadows are amongst the best on the market. And it’s in a deep ruby wine shade that’s perfect as a base for a sultry smoky eye? It would be just rude not to have that too.
Not to mention there’s also a beautiful vivid pink blush (appropriately called Narcissist, since I think when you’re wearing this blush you can’t take your eyes off yourself), and the lipstick in Aphrodisiac, a bright fuchsia rose.
In fact this whole collection (and the stunning campaign images with makeup by super makeup artist, Charlotte Tilbury) have had me thinking non-stop about the high-octane glamour of Robert Palmer’s videos – who can forget his ultimate Guy Bourdin-esque femme fatales?
When I was a little girl I thought I would one day magically morph into these other-worldly beauties – little did I know that beauty in the 80’s involved kilos of cosmetics, multiple cans of hairspray and Giorgip Saint Angelo bandage dresses, as well as a whole bottle of Dior Poison perfume (also little did I know it would take a full body transformation, an extra three feet in height and the desire to look like you were permanently walking around in a Helmut Newton photograph, but I digress).*
But you know what? This season no one told Tom Ford that and with this delicious new Fall collection, I might just have a shot ait it.
*air guitar playing optional
Blue Illusion de Chanel
Last week I had the distinct pleasure of using the brand new Spring/Summer Chanel collection on a beauty shoot. Chanel products are always a dream to play with, and this collection even more so than usual as it’s all blues! Mr Lagerfeld must have been reading my recent post about my lust for blue eyeshadow as he has released a whole collection just for me (I like to think so, anyway). Mr Lagerfeld has us taking to the friendly skies with his fabulous new collection – and it made me dream of air travel in the 60’s. Here’s a vintage Pan Am video to get you in the mood:
The Ombre d’Illusions range of eyeshadows have to be some of my most favourite, favourite products in the world. Put it this way, if there was a fire and I could only save some of my makeup, these guys would be some of the first rescued! I love these for a smoky eye with a twist.
Then there’s the two new eyeliners (two I tell you! Mr Lagerfeld, you do spoil us) – Marine Intense Eye pencil, which is a deep blackened blue, and Blue Aerien Precision Eye Definer which is a lovely, rich cobalt.
Rouge Coco Shine lipstick in Chic is the lip colour to go with it, which is a, well, chic little nothing of a lip. It is on the pale brown side which channels perfectly with the current shift back to the 90’s with its love of brown lipstick. But as this is sheer its easy to wear and very a la mode.
The nailpolish in Skyline continues Chanel’s straight run of stand out polish shades. It’s an incredible, vivid sky blue and such a nice change from the usual bronze/peach/gold summer collections. It makes me think of tropical water, clear blue skies and sunshine and it’s the first thing I’m packing for my current trip to Bali (far more important than say, sunscreen or clothes). If I could float way on this little jewel of a polish colour right now I would.
Also makeup maestro Peter Phillips used all the colours of the new collection IN the Chanel Spring/Summer Couture show. So if you’d like to look like Lindsey Wixon, just head to your local Chanel counter *
Illamasqua are a makeup company dear to my heart – not just because I assisted their Creative Director, Alex Box, for many years, or because I was there back even before the launch and Alex would give me their first prototype products to try (I still have these, don’t you know). But I absolutely love what Illamasqua stand for which is true originality, and expression of the self through makeup, no matter how daring, bold or wild that self might be. The more daring the better! They see beauty in everything and everywhere, as I do, and constantly push the boundaries in their campaign images and product development, and for that I will always love them.
I can really get behind their latest campaign as well, which is Beauty Before Age. They are looking for people of any vintage who don’t let this define them, and also pairs – so nieces and aunties, mothers and daughters, grandmothers and grandsons, or any combination you can think of, to shoot in their upcoming Autumn/Winter campaign. It’s so wonderful they have planned a whole campaign around beauty being ageless. Age is literally just a number and it’s time we started to appreciate a more diverse range of beauty, instead of whippet thin teenage girls and the army of Kim Kardashian clones coming out of Hollywood. In your 50’s, 60’s 70’s 80’s and beyond you can still look and feel beautiful – and Illamasqua’s new campaign is about celebrating that.
Find out more on the Illamasqua website
Where do I even start with the new Autumn/Winter collection? Well should I start with the fact that every major makeup artist that I’ve spoken to in the last month on Twitter or email is in raptures? Kay Montano, Romy Soleimani, Florrie White, Benjamin Puckey – from London to New York they’re all raving about it, using it on shoots and on the red carpet. I’ve been using it on shoots and I’m in love with the colours and the textures.
Let me break it down for you – it’s the best Chanel collection yet. They have these new crème eyehsdaows called Illusion d’Ombre that are like metallic whipped mousses, and it’s a texture I’ve never used before. On the eye they look like foil, giving the most gorgeous metallic sheen. I had (serendipitously) a metallic beauty shoot recently and these gorgeous shadows just came into their own. The colour selection is beautiful as well:
Fantasme – silvery white loveliness
Emerveille – the ultimate peachy shimmer
Illusoire – taupe-plum perfection
Epatant – divine khaki silver (and what Peter Phillips used on the last Ready to Wear Chanel show).
Mirifique – perfect midnight blue black
Ebloui – deep burgundy gorgeousness
Mirifique was used in last week’s Chanel couture show to create the most amazing shiny, mysterious smoky eye (haute couture black lace burglar’s net optional).
The nailpolishes are incredible as well as they are extraordinary metallic duochromes, my favourite of which is Peridot. I used this on the same metallic beauty shoot and it’s like an Egyptian scarab, all gold and green, depending on where the light hits it. These are true stand-out nails! They are easy to apply (although I do like two coats), and I also loved the Quartz shade (not dissimilar to Bacterium from Illamasqua’s Art of Darkness collection). The inky silvery shade Graphite I’m saving for a special evening out next week.
There is a gorgeous new neutrals eyeshadow quad called Prelude, which is difficult to describe in that it’s plum matte black but not TOO purple, and two taupes that are almost khaki-toned, along with a buttery cream colour. It is completely different to all the other Chanel quads I own, so even though it’s perfect for a smoky eye, it’s not the same old greys and deep browns, which is refreshing.
The newest addition to their stable of eyeliners is Khaki Platine, which (as its name suggests), is a pale, shimmering khaki green, and which I know makeup artist Florrie White in London has recently used on Rosie Huntngton-Whiteley for the red carpet.
And last, but by no means least, is the new Rouge Coco lipstick in Etole, which is a beautiful lip shade – the exact colour of your lips (if your lips were perfect, which my lips sadly aren’t). Which is why it’s currently living in my handbag. Makeup artist Mary Greenwell used it on Uma Thurman at Cannes recently. There’s also a new rose blusher called Rose Ecrin which I haven’t tried yet – but given my track record with their blushes, as in the word ADDICTED springs to mind, I know I’ll be checking it out soon.
Just when I think Chanel have reached the apotheosis of makeup heaven there is a new collection, and Peter Phillips has dialed it up a notch again. The Autumn/Winter collection is about as close to makeup nirvana as it’s possible to get.
The Chanel Autumn/Winter 2011 Illusions d’Ombres de Chanel will be on-counter in Australia from the 31st of July.
Wow, where do I start with this one? It’s been burning a hole in my kit ever since I got to try it a little while ago – in a word, it’s gorgeous. Chanel’s Creative Director, Peter Phillips, never ceases to amaze me, as he just gets it right, collection after collection. Perfectly what you want to wear when the weather gets warmer, but never clichéd. Check out the new ad below:
First off, the eyesahdow Quad in Lilium. I have blogged about my love for Chanel Eyeshadow quads before and still really, I can’t get enough of them. This one has a deep, hunter green, a citrus-y lime, a pale pink and a gorgeous grey taupe which for all those taupe lovers out there is quite beautiful as it’s shot through with a pink and green duochrome. Lilium’s closest Chanel counterparts would be Garden Party (although the colours on that are much more wintry), and Nymphaea, an oldie but a goodie.
One of the things that people complain about with Chanel quads is their pigment pay-off, which I have to confess is not as strong as other brands on the market (like Illamasqua or MAC), but it is definitely improving. I compared the new Lagons eyeshadow quad (which is DIVINE, by the way), with Bleu Celestes which it is not dissimilar too colour-wise, and the pay-off of Lagons is much better and the colours more vibrant. I love those quads for the colours, and the way they go together, as they’re just unlike anything else and they always have exactly the right amount of shimmer. (Please note I am speaking about the European quads, not the US ones as they are a completely different formulation).
So both Lilum and Lagons have made it into my kit – not that Bleu Celestes has gone anywhere, that’s still a favourite. When will I stop with the Chanel Eyeshadow quads? Someone needs to organize a makeup intervention!
The new bronzer, Soleil Tan de Chanel in Bronze Rose, is a gradated bronzer with a strip of pink at the end that provides a beautiful wash of colour. It’s not the deepest darkest bronzer around, so those with deeper complexions should definitely try before they buy. It also comes in a coral version, Bronze Corail, which also looks beautiful. I am loving the soft tan-pink flush that Bronze Rose gives.
The bright yellow nail polish, Mimosa, I wasn’t sure if I could get into but three coats of this sunshine in a bottle has made my feet feel like – well like this:
(Although not the bit about dancing in a squat, or her makeup, which needs to be locked in a vault labelled “Never to Be Released”, but the song, yes.) Mimosa has just enough pearl in it to lift the yellow and make it wearable since matte yellows can be quite hard to wear.
Probably my favourite of the collection though has to be the Stylo Yeux Waterproof in Rose Platine. It’s a shimmering icy pink-y taupe that isn’t frosty or nasty, but has just the right amount of light reflection to give your gaze that little extra something – the one that says “I am gorgeous” but you can’t tell why. Not “Hi! I have a strip of pearlescent eye highlighter going on! I look like a disco ball!”
Like all Chanel collections this one just makes you feel like you should be on a yacht somewhere, cruising past Cap Ferrat or St Tropez on the way to some fancy party, and quite frankly that’s how you want to feel after dropping serious money at a makeup counter. Well I do, anyway. On this, Chanel ALWAYS delivers.
The Chanel Summer Collection is currently on-counter in the UK, and will be available in Australia from the 29th May.
I’m very excited about this week’s launch of Lancome‘s new collection for Spring, Ultra Lavande – and there’s a few reasons why. One, because it’s shades of purple and lavender which never go out of season at MM HQ, two because it’s Aaron de Mey who created it (one of my makeup artist crushes), and three, it has Julia Restoin-Roitfield as the new spokesmodel. I did her makeup in London and not only is she gorgeous with the style you’d expect from someone who basically grew up at Paris Vogue, she’s also a really lovely, friendly girl. Check out the behind the scenes video of the making of the new Ultra Lavande commercial. Then go get your lavande on (I know I will be).
NARS is a brand that, quite frankly, had me at hello, but of late it has been reaching new heights of rocking my socks off. I give you:
Not to mention the campaign image with the stupendous model Iris Strubegger , who’s one of my favourite models of the last couple of years. She looks tough, sexy, androgynous yet gorgeous – love her. I did her makeup in Berlin a couple of years ago now and she’s as lovely on the inside as she is on the outside, not to mention being an otherworldly beauty when she hits that catwalk.
Exhibit B: The new VGPs (I just can’t help myself with the acronyms.)
Or Velvet Gloss Pencils. I mean really, just when you thought it couldn’t get any better! I have a Crayola like stash of NARS VMPs (Velvet Matte Pencils) in my kit at all times, so I can only guess how many of those shiny new GLOSSY bad boys are going to be snuggling up next to their matte cousins by the end of the season.
Just because it’s beautiful, here is the new VGP video with the lovely Heather Marks.
So God, if you’re listening I’m going to be needing: NARS Douceur and Sex Appeal blush, VGPs (all), Matte Lipstick in Tashkent and Volga, Hollywoodland eye pencil, the new Eye Trio in Calanque, Nouveau Monde and Bateau Ivre eyeshadow duos, and Coconut Grove single eyeshadow. I think that’s it for now.
(Although it’s OK if you’re a bit busy at the moment to fulfill my NARS request. Just, you know, when you get time).
The new Spring collection is available in the UK and US, and available in Australia through Mecca Cosmetica from the 21st February.