May 23rd, 2013
Celebrities are in the business of looking good, so it’s no surprise that many of them have picked up some brilliant beauty tips.
Having spent hours in the make-up chair for various performances, celebrities know more than most about the ins and outs of beauty. The following tips come from those who are pretty much paid to look good – take note girls…
The stunning A-list actress goes against convention and does not wash her face in the morning – instead she focuses on a good cleansing routine at night.
“At night your skin is rebuilding oils that you need to keep your skin young. In the morning you can splash it with water but you don’t want to get rid of that.” she says.
Dr Sam Bunting (leading dermatologist) agrees, saying that sebum is nature’s best moisturiser, unless you suffer from oily or acne prone skin.
Cate shuns high-priced exfoliation treatments and makes her own concoction at home. The star uses olive and macadamia nut oils combined with sea salt and a little grapefruit juice.
Dr Bunting approves, saying, “I think you can cheat when it comes to exfoliating the body.”
Queen Bey avoids coffee if she’s tired and reaches for the gold eyeshadow instead, “I put a little gold eyeshadow in the inner corners of my eyes, it’s more subtle than white but it makes you look more awake,” she says.
Celebrity make-up artist Nathalie Eleni says this is a great tip and to try a shadow with a little shimmer to help lift tired eyes.
The Celebrity Juice star uses a unique trick for contouring her face using concealer, “I do a whisker trick,” she says. “I apply it in stripes from the outer edges of my nose and corner edges of my mouth out on to my cheeks. Then I blend to brighten the front of my face. The lighter colour lifts sunken areas.”
Nathalie agrees this is a good tip, saying she often uses lighter coloured concealer from the corners of the nose to the smile lines and darker shades under the cheekbones.
Do you fancy being treated like a celebrity for the day? Why not have your make-up done professionally for a red carpet ready look? For more information, please see our Professional make-up page.
May 18th, 2013
Speed up your make-up routine with these six expert tips.
Everyone has one of ‘those’ mornings every now and then – you’ve snoozed through your alarm, you have an important meeting at work and now you’ve got just five minutes to do your make-up, nightmare! But never fear, the following six steps will give you a fresh, flawless look in just five minutes…
Step 1: Apply your base
To start with, prepare your skin with a layer of moisturizer and/or primer to help your foundation slide on easier. For the best results in a short amount of time, use a foundation stick and draw lines down your cheekbones, at the side of your nose and above your brows and then blend, blend, blend.
Step 2: Cover any blemishes
Use a creamy concealer to take care of any blemishes or under-eye circles. Be sure to use a colour that matches your skin tone, anything too light will have a highlighting effect. Set your base with a quick dust of powder.
Step 3: Add some warmth
When you’re in a rush avoid any shading or contouring routines with your blusher and simply apply a cream blusher to the apples of your cheeks. If you’ve applied too much, simply use powder/foundation to tone it down.
Step 4: Make your eyes pop
A wash of sheer, shimmery cream shadow topped with a bronze or gold hue will really help your eyes stand out, and as the colour isn’t too dark there is no need for a time-consuming application – just use your fingers.
Step 5: Create some definition
Line your lash lines with a dark brown eyeliner and apply a coat of mascara to help define your eyes.
Step 6: Get luscious lips
Complete your look with a bit of lip colour. Prepare the lips with a layer of lip balm before applying a soft pink colour with your fingertips for a subtle and pretty final result.
If you have an important event coming up, why not have your make-up done professionally? To find out more, please see our Professional Make-up page.
May 15th, 2013
What better way to celebrate the approaching birth of a future monarch than with a new purple nail polish from Butter London?
Aptly named Pitter Patter, this new nail lacquer in a sumptuous royal purple is the latest addition to a regal-themed collection (which includes ‘No More Waity, Katie’, ‘All Hail the Queen’ and ‘Lillibet’s Jubilee’).
The Prince and his heavily pregnant but still impressively demure Duchess have so far kept schtum about the sex of their unborn child. Butter London’s choice of purple is conveniently gender-neutral, standing instead for the wealth and luxury associated with royalty.
The future heir is due to be born in July – and if the Royal Wedding was anything to go by, we’re certain the whole world will be celebrating in style. Forget Union Jack face paint and garish bunting – if you want to celebrate the Royal Birth with class, why not paint your nails with Pitter Patter?
Pitter Patter Lacquer in shimmery, opaque aubergine is available for £13 online at Butter London.
So what exactly is Butter London?
Founded in 2005 by British entrepreneur Sasha Muir, Butter London represents rocky, kookie, alternative luxury. Despite its all-British name and theme, Butter London is predominantly a U.S. brand, with a big Brit-loving American following. Luckily the site has a UK version so the patriotic amongst us can have our pick of the great products on offer. The pretty and unexpected product line includes nail lacquers, nail treatments and lip products all with high-quality, carcinogen-free formulas.
We especially love the Backstage Basics kit, inspired by behind-the-scenes work at Fashion Week. This kit makes a perfect gift for a fashion-conscious friend and includes:
- Nail Foundation Flawless Basecoat
- A Bespoke Nail Lacquer of your choice
- Hardwear P.D. Quick Topcoat
- Powder Room Acetone-Free Lacquer Remover
- Complimentary Nail File.
You can find the Backstage Basics Kit online for £35 at Butter London.
Fancy a manicure or pedicure? Head on over to our Nails page for more information.
May 11th, 2013
Deciding how bronzed you want to look this summer is no longer about holiday destination – it’s about careful product selection…
With spring in full swing us Brits can finally start thinking about summer and all the beauty essentials that come with it; for many of us this includes self-tan. The days of a one-shade-fits-all self-tan are long gone, with a multitude of different shades and products available. The only question is – do you want to holiday in Cornwall, Cannes or Miami?
The Cornwall tan
A subtle, natural looking tan is the English rose’s holy grail. This tan will act as a background colour to allow your natural beauty to shine through. For this look many people employ the use of gradual tans, but customising your own is becoming a huge trend. To do this, simply mix your self-tan with your body lotion/moisturiser for a subtle glow.
Try: Clarins Radiance-Plus Golden Glow Cream-Gel (£25.65)
The Cannes tan
This tan has more of a glossy, glamorous look to it – think Cameron Diaz after a surfing holiday. To get that shiny finish opt for a self-tan with a hint of shimmer. In terms of product type, tanning mousses are likely to give you the best colour for this kind of tan (as opposed to creams, oils or sprays). Use a tanning mitt to ensure you get a really even finish.
Try: Sienna X Q10 Bronzing Mousse (£20.79)
The Miami tan
The deepest tan in our list should look nourished and rich. This shade of bronze looks particularly great against this season’s neon trend, so don’t be afraid to go a shade darker. For an intense colour, try the ‘double-dip’ method where you apply a layer two nights in a row.
Try: St Tropez Self Tan Dark Bronzing Lotion (£33)
May 9th, 2013
Acidic colour, bold clashes and Tahitian glamour is the theme for the new Pacific Coast Collection by Gucci Westman for Revlon.
The collection comes with four ready-made looks for those balmy days by the sea. Here’s our pick and how to achieve them:
The Paradise Look
The Paradise Look appears to be inspired by some beautiful exotic bird with bright, iridescent plumes. Eyes are blue, cheeks and lips are fuchsia and nails are a soft coral. To achieve this look you’ll need:
1. Revlon Color Stay 16 Hour Eye Shadow Quad in Free Spirit
This beach-themed palette includes:
- pale blue
- bright blue
Use the boldest blue on the lid and blend into pale blue towards the brow. Smudge black into the lash line, sweeping out towards the corner of the eye and then blend with tan for a seamless look.
2. Revlon Colourstay Baby Stick for Lips and Cheeks in Pink Passion
A very bright pink to add a fresh glow to your complexion. Sweep upwards along the ridge of your cheekbone.
3. Revlon ColorBurst Lip Butter in Pink Lemonade
For shiny, plump, bright pink lips that stand out, apply a generous layer of gorgeously thick lip butter.
4. Revlon ColorStay Longwear Nail Enamel in Seashell
This beautiful coral nail polish softens off a bright beach look. Apply two layers for a really smooth veneer.
The Tropical Look
The Tropical Look is just as bright and vibrant as the Paradise Look, but a whole lot more sultry – making this a great one for the evening.
1. Revlon Color Stay 16 Hour Eye Shadow Quad in Free Spirit
Using the same Free Spirit eye palette, make use of the tan shade by sweeping it across the whole of your lid and blending black into the crease. Next, apply Revlon ColorStay Creme Gel Eye Liner in White Mist to give the appearance of wide, fresh eyes.
2. Revlon Baby Stick for Lips and Cheeks in Sunset
Sticking with the sultry ‘after dark’ theme, this flushed shade is all about the excitement of an evening to come – blend into your cheeks for a hot glow.
3. Revlon ColorBurst Lip Butter in Wild Watermelon
This shade is a deep red/pink – bold, daring and mysterious.
4. Revlon ColorStay Longwear Nail Enamel in Jungle
This polish is the darkest black, adding a vampish edge to your bold Tropical Look.
Check out the Pacific Look from Revlon.
May 4th, 2013
Sensitive skin is one of the most common beauty complaints in the UK, with most women in the country saying they suffer from sensitivity in one way or another. The condition is usually inherited and affects fair-skinned people more.
Having sensitive skin can be a nightmare for beauty lovers, especially when every product you use causes a reaction. Sadly skin sensitivity can be hard to manage as it is rarely caused by one single trigger. A reaction can be made worse by irritating ingredients in products, acne, contact dermatitis or even by a combination of environmental stresses.
Sensitive skin issues can be tackled however; the first step is finding a range of products suitable for your skin. There are many different ranges out there for those with delicate skin including: Simple, Liz Earle and Olay. The trick is to look out for natural ingredients.
On top of finding a product range that suits you, the following tips should help keep your skin happy:
- Use tepid water when washing your face, not hot water.
- Pat skin dry with a towel rather than rub it.
- Try to avoid any extreme temperatures (such as steam rooms and saunas).
- Stay out of the sun when possible as it can increase your skin’s sensitivity. Be sure to protect your skin with a high level SPF when you do spend time in the sun.
- Don’t overload your skin with too many products/ingredients, the simpler the regime, the better.
- Test products out on a small patch of skin before using them on your face.
- Switch to using gentle products specifically designed for sensitive skin.
If you are struggling with a skin condition, seeing a dermatologist could help. For more information and to find a dermatologist near you, please see our Dermatology page.
May 1st, 2013
Last year everyone was raving about the foundation/skin care hybrid known as blemish balm, or ‘BB cream’, which claimed to be a primer, foundation, concealer, SPF sun cream and moisturiser all in one.
Now it’s all about the up-and-coming complexion corrector, or ‘CC cream’, a lighter, stronger cream for those who want correction more than prevention.
So what is CC cream?
Just as we were all getting used to swapping our tinted moisturisers for BB creams, it seems the beauty world had spawned yet another magic multi-purpose product to banish those blemishes. So what makes CC cream different, and why should we choose it over BB cream?
CC cream, short for complexion corrector, is aimed at women who want anti-ageing effects as well as overall coverage. Editor of TheBeautyBean.com Alexis Wolfer described it as the ‘movie sequel’ of BB cream. As well as preventing the effects of ageing with SPF, CC cream can also, apparently, undo damage with wrinkle smoothing serum.
Olay Regenerist Advanced Anti-Ageing Cream for instance is made up of a serum called ‘essential glucosamine complex’, designed to reduce the appearance or wrinkles. At £24.99, it’s not exactly a budget product but with so many functions squeezed into one bottle, it could end up being a money-saver.
As well as fighting wrinkles, CC cream is also said to fade dark spots, sun spots and acne scars over time, making this not just a cover-up but an active skin care product.
If you’re not one for hoarding thousands of bottles you only use once, CC cream is a great alternative. Pop a little bottle into your handbag and you can top up during the day, ensuring you look spotless in the office, at meetings or even at the gym. This is essentially airbrushing without the technical skills!
While Olay of course takes the anti-ageing angle, L’Oreal has opted for anti-fatigue. Even 20-somethings who’ve yet to agonise over lines and wrinkles can wake up with eye-bags and dull skin. In a fast-paced world, having time to practice a full skin care regime has become something of a luxury. L’Oreal Nude Magique CC Cream neutralises the appearance of redness, dullness and general signs of fatigue on the skin. Plus, with SPF 12, this product will also protect skin a little from harmful UV rays throughout the day. At just £9.99 this product is wallet-friendly as well as effective.
If you’re ready to upgrade your BB cream for a level up in the cover-up game, head to your nearest make-up counter and try CC cream for yourself.
April 27th, 2013
Trying to find your perfect mascara is similar to the search for true love – before you can start, you need to assess your needs.
The mascara market can be a complicated one to navigate, especially when terminology such as ‘volumising’, ‘lengthening’ and ‘curling’ are thrown into the mix. The key to finding a mascara that will work for you is to figure out what your lashes need. To do this, take a good hard look at your eyes and decipher your lash type…
Short and thick: your lashes will benefit from lengthening mascaras containing nylon fibres (these act like mini extensions). Try to concentrate the product towards the tips of your lashes to avoid too much density at the lash line.
Short and thin: apply one layer of volumising mascara at the roots and a second layer of lengthening mascara at the tips for longer and thicker looking lashes. Allow each product to set in between applications for best results.
Long and thick: lucky you! To make the most of your lashes use an eyelash curler first and apply mascara in a zig-zag motion to avoid clumping.
Long and thin: applying a volumising mascara will help make your lashes look fuller, but be sure to avoid clumping by using a comb-shaped applicator.
Straight: eyelash curlers will give your lashes a great curl to start with, while a curling mascara will help to hold the bend all day.
Once you’ve tracked down your ideal mascara, make sure you keep your lashes in tip-top condition. Invest in a good make-up remover that doesn’t require you to rub your eyelashes and apply a serum every night to help them stay healthy with or without mascara.
If you want to take things a step further and try eyelash tinting, eyelash perming or even eyelash extensions, take a look at our page on Eyes and Brows.
April 24th, 2013
For most of us, a ‘luxury treat’ might come in the form of a new Chanel lipstick, or a hot stone massage at the local spa.
For those lucky few women who go to Knightsbridge to actually spend money (rather than to point, gawp and feel like a pauper), ‘luxury treat’ takes on a whole new meaning.
Clarins Extra-Firming Night Cream was voted best anti-ageing cream by Elle readers last year and at £48, it counts as a ‘luxury treat’ in our books. But for women who drive bespoke sports cars and own Caribbean islands, this comparative bargain simply doesn’t make the cut.
In Harrods you can find La Prairie Swarovski Edition Skin Caviar Luxe Cream for £1,400. This is the price of a Mediterranean cruise, or a high-powered laptop. This very blingy product (studded all over with Swarovski crystals) promises to hydrate the skin with an ultra concentrated formula for a softer, firmer complexion. Of course it’s not worth the outrageous price tag but it’s certainly a statement, and if you’ve got the cash to splash – why not?
You can view this very special edition Skin Caviar Luxe Cream here.
A little further down the price ladder but no nearer to justifying its worth is 111 Skin Celestial Black Diamond Night Cream at £599. This skin cream is allegedly developed with the latest scientific technology to rebuild and protect the skin. As well as some potentially made-up ingredients (N-cystine and centella asiatica), this night cream also contains black diamond miscrospheres which apparently ‘delivers key youth preserving ingredients’ to the skin.
If you fancy a bit of diamond exfoliation yourself then you can view 111 Skin here.
For something a lot more down to earth but no less luxurious, try Tom Ford Intensive Infusion Concentrate Extreme for £185. While we’re closer to normal prices, this is still an awful lot of money for just 30ml of cream. However, because we love Tom Ford’s brand for its classic, no-nonsense approach to cosmetics, we’re prepared to forgive him this time. Here there’s not a crystal, diamond, or caviar bead in sight. This dermatologically tested serum claims to rejuvenate the skin’s complexion with a combination of vitamins and nutrients. Simple enough for us!
You can view Concentrate Extreme here.
If you would prefer to spend money on a professional treatment, please visit our Facials page for more information.
April 20th, 2013
Having a smile you’re proud of can do wonders for your confidence, read on to find out more about different teeth whitening treatments and other tips for a beautiful smile…
If you are unhappy about the way your teeth look, chances are you avoid smiling, cover your mouth whenever you talk and avoid cameras like the plague. This can severely hinder your confidence levels and make you feel unhappy about your appearance in general.
If it is the colour of your teeth in particular that is getting you down, having your teeth whitened could help to brighten up your smile and increase your confidence. Teeth whitening is used to lighten dark stains on the enamel and dentine to give you a whiter smile. The treatment usually uses a gel with a hydrogen peroxide base and can be done by a dentist or by yourself at home, depending on the severity of the problem.
Whether you opt for a professional or DIY treatment, you will need to see your dentist beforehand to ensure you have no pre-existing issues and that a clean-up and removal of tartar build up won’t be enough on its own.
If you have opted for professional whitening you should have the option of either an in-office treatment or walking treatment. The first treatment is usually carried out at the dentists office where a plastic mouth guard (moulded to the patient’s teeth) is used to hold the whitening gel on the teeth and is left to work for 20-90 minutes depending on the stains. In some cases a light may be used to accelerate the process – this is known as laser bleaching.
A walking treatment involves a session with the dentist and then the treatment is continued at home using a lower dose hydrogen peroxide gel. Results should be visible after 15 days and results can last up to four years if you look after your teeth.
Home teeth whitening involves a slightly less effective treatment using a very low dose hydrogen peroxide gel to be used in the form of strips, mouth guard and gel pen. While these treatments are less effective than professional whitening, they are much more affordable.
To keep your teeth naturally white remember to steer clear from tea, coffee, red wine, liquorice and cigarettes. Use a dark coloured lipstick to make teeth appear whiter and use an illuminator on your skin to bring out your natural sparkle.
If you want to find out more about teeth whitening and find a practitioner near you, please see our Teeth Whitening page.