You may have noticed that fashion has taken on a spookier guise this season but don’t be mistaken into thinking it is just because we are approaching Halloween. The goth trend is huge for this autumn-winter, so slick on some dark lipstick, swath yourself in black lace and get in touch with your dark side.
Camden has long been famed for the alternative style of its inhabitants. Its streets are awash with stalls selling chunky, metal studded boots and this little corner of North London plays host to The Devonshire Arms, a favourite haunt of London’s most fantastically funereal, leather clad Goths.
Camden is also the well known playground of rockier celebrities such as Noel Fielding, Russell Brand, and Daisy Lowe, all of whom were often seen falling out of The Hawley Arms wearing deliciously alternative ensembles before it burned down earlier this year.
It is no co-incidence then that the prevalent gothic style touted about this part of town has ceased to be sported solely by rebellious teenagers and Cradle of Filth fans and has made its way into the wider sartorial sphere, with rock royalty Kelly Osborne seamlessly bridging the gap between NW1 and the high street.
Indeed, a dark shadow also prevailed over the catwalks during the Autumn-Winter 08/09 shows. Jean Paul Gaultier flirted with the dark side via witchy black maxi dresses and jagged edged knitwear, while Luella went all out sending models down the catwalk in black pointed hats and garish orange hosiery. Balmain took a punkier approach to the trend with skin-tight leather trousers as did Rodarte who teamed vertiginous, spike encrusted platforms with spidery webbed tights.
Of course, where the catwalk dares to go, the high-street shortly follows, with Topshop’s aptly named Pagan collection, heavy on black lace and studded lace up boots, leading the way.
For a little Friday afternoon work avoidance/shopping porn, I decided to head on over to Net-a-Porter and peruse their Shoe Boot selection. I am pretty drawn to this latest trend in footwear at the moment as I love their slightly clunky yet elegant nature, and would you look at this rather lovely pair our good, foot-loving friend Christian Louboutin has on offer!
Firstly, the high, closed front makes them a good proper shoe boot, unlike a lot of brogues that I think are being wrongly given this title of late.
Secondly, I love the big button detail on the side as it adds a real touch of Victoriana and reminds me of a gorgeous pair of quilted, patent leather, Victorian ankle boots I had when I was little. I was so sad when I grew out of those boots, that I think a pair of Louboutins are the only think that could possibly allow me to get over it!
Lately, I realise I have been neglecting this little ol' blog, and I do apologise young readers. You see I have been pretty busy over at BitchBuzz, and there is only so much fashion wisdom my little brain can produce, meaning The Liner, The Clutch and The Wardrobe has been somewhat deprived.
Anyway, I am back, and with me, I bring this little nugget of fashion joy from Karl Lagerfeld's Spring 09 collection for his eponymous label, shown in Paris this week.
Karl Lagerfeld often adds an element of his signature look of stiff collared shirts and bondage inspired corset touches to collections for his Karl Lagerfeld label, lending his clothes a distinct androgynous feel.
These signature touches were certainly present, however, Lagerfeld lent his Spring 09 collection a more feminine feel than normal via sheer fabrics, floral applique, and some gorgeous soft silk, most notably on a lavishly draped silver dress.
Making sure onlookers who including US Vogue editor Anna Wintour and Anna Piaggi, were reminded of the collection's puppet master, was a bag bearing Lagerfeld's face with the eyes cut out as a handle. One Model (pictured) walked down to the catwalk holding it like a mask, which gave the appearance of Karl himself flouncing down the catwalk in a waist cinching satin skirt.
Now that would be a sight wouldn't it!
Image via Style.com
Despite them being one of the staple handmade products that natural cosmetics pioneers Lush offer, I have only very recently tried their Fresh Face Masks. Shocking I know for such a Lush addict, but hey, good things come to those who wait!
Yesterday, I tried 'A Crash Course in Skincare', a nourishing mask made from mashed avocado, fresh natural yoghurt and freshly squeezed lemon juice. This is a perfect mask if like me, you have combination skin. The avocado and yoghurt will provide gentle moisture to dry areas while lemon juice will help tighten pores and keep oil at bay.
When applying the mask, it is clear that the mask is packed with fresh avocado and yoghurt because, well, you can smell it. While it is not the most pleasant smell, it isn't too bad, and the smooth cooling texture of the mask more than makes up for it. When you wash the mask off, the only smell you are left with is that of the fresh citrussy lemon, and it really did leave my skin smelling gorgeous.
What's more, the difference in appearance and texture was really noticeable. My skin was left fresh, supple and glowing, perfect for perking up booze bedraggled skin after a heavy weekend!
As much as I love beauty products, we all know that they don't always do exactly what they say on the tin. We know that lip gloss won't give you a Jolie pout, and that cellulite creams won't give you legs like Kate Moss. However, we also know that both the above will enhance our natural assets at least just a little bit, and thus our trust is re-instilled in the wonderful world of beauty.
Sometimes however the Beauty Industry will throw a wild card of ridiculousness at us that surely even the most gullible wouldn't believe. Last week, WWD announced that Ageless Fantasty has come up with the world's first anti-age perfume. Seriously? An anti-age perfume?
Ageless Fantasy are claiming they can actually make you smell younger, following 'research' that suggests that certain smells are associated with certain ages, meaning their grapefruit, pomegranate, mango, jasmine and musk scent can lead nearby whiffers to believe you are up to 8 years younger.
Once again, seriously? While I will admit that some smells are often more associated with certain ages; floral scents denoting older women while fresher, citrus scents have a younger association, unless wearers of Ageless Fantasy are planning on only hanging around with blind people, the theory is not fool proof.
If Ageless Fantasy are really onto something, why not go a step further and invest in Barbie's latest scent, or for the more discerning lady, The Olsen Twins do some really hot ones.
Since winning the Womenswear Award for his beautiful, Elizabethan nightwear inspired collection at Graduate Fashion Week back in June, Nabil El Nayal has been getting a lot of attention, not only across the fashion blogosphere, but in huge fashion publications such as Elle and Vogue.
Today's announcement that he has been awarded a coveted scholarship by the BFC to study an MA in Fashion Womenswear at the Royal College of Art in London therefore, comes as little surprise.
When I saw his collection closing the Manchester School of Art show, I was genuinely stunned by the gorgeous, ethereal gowns that graced the catwalk, and I can't wait to see what he comes up with next.
Wonderbra is a label that has always been associated with sexiness, so it seems especially fitting that glamorous burlesque star Dita Von Teese would design a collection for the lingerie company.
Wonderbra by Dita Von Teese features a selection of sets including 'Spot-Teese', a gorgeous sheer set with spot detail, 'Satin-Teese', a soft peach satin ensemble finished with sexy black lace, and 'Multi-Teese', a bra with variable straps and magnetic clasp fastening.
While the magnet fastening might be perfect for flinging it off a la Dita, I can foresee serious bra malfunction when reaching for something on a high up shelf in Tesco! Apart from that though, the pieces which have a cool vintage feel to them really are beautiful, with a sexiness that is just the right side of slutty (as in the non-slutty side, we're nice girls here at The Liner, The Clutch and The Wardrobe). Von Teese comments, "Lingerie shouldn't be something you just put on for your lover; you should do it for you. It's not about seducing men, it's about embracing womanhood."
Following a special film featuring Dita herself on the Wonderbra website on 15th September, the collection will be available across Europe from the 23rd September.
Image via Catwalk Queen
It seems there is no end to how much pleasure I can derive from the eccentricities of Karl Lagerfeld, whether it is he himself reminding us about road safety, or a clever impostor parodying the unique designer.
In the US edition of this month's Harpers Bazaar, a selection of famous designers including Roberto Cavalli, Michael Kors and the Kaiser himself were photographed living out their fantasies. Ever one for unlikely choices, Karl Lagerfeld chose to be photographed as a rapper, exclaiming 'I love rap'! And doesn't he look the shiz in this street get up, a far cry from his usual stiff, gothic attire.
Now I just want to hear him rap!
Following the success of several collections for Topshop over the past two years, Celia Birtwell has designed another line for Autumn-Winter 08/09.
In light of the Romantic-Goth trend that is set to be huge this coming season, the collection boats plenty of sheers and dark colours, retaining the unique Birtwell look with contrasting floral prints and plenty of seventies inspired pussy bows on blouses. The retro prints and styles, particularly of the four blouses included in the collection, also nod to the Folk trend that was present on the catwalks for this Autumn.
Amongst the four dresses the collection has to offer, my personal favourite is the black and white 'Cape Dress' which as the name suggests features a unique cape detail on the back. There is also a gorgeous slouchy play suit in the same print for those of us blessed with long legs and no evidence of ever having even sniffed a Krispy Kreme!
These days almost every brand is finding some way to cash in on people's interest in environmental issues and remind us of how natural and ethical they are. Even petrol stations are doing it, and I am pretty sure no matter which way they twist it, there is nothing environmentally friendly about petrol!
It is easy to forget then that when The Body Shop launched back in 1976, ethical issues were at the forefront of their identity, particularly through their heavy campaigning against animal testing. In light of this, later this month they will reveal a re-vamped image that will emphasise this important part of their heritage. This will include more ingredient centered advertising campaigns as well as the launch of a mineral make up line in September.
While natural purists may quite rightly argue that this is merely a commercial decision by parent company L'Oreal to increase revenue, I think that at least the fundamental philosophies behind The Body Shop are being adhered to, whether the motives are cynical or not.
Watch this space for more news on The Body Shop's Mineral Make Up line.
Lip and cheek stain balms are probably one of my favourite beauty products. Benetint Lip Balm has been one of my make up bag staples for years for providing rosy moisturisation to my lips whilst lending a subtle flush to cheeks, and Vaseline have just gone and done a great budget version in the form of Lip Therapy: Rosy Lips.
Now I love the rose scent that these products often have but a friend of mine can't stand it. Lucky for her though, Eyeko Fat Balm Lip and Cheek Stain comes with the delicious scent of strawberries. Jojoba oil give Fat Balm the same nourishing qualities of Benetint Lip Balm, but at £4.99, it comes without the hefty price tag.
Fat balm is definitely granted a place in the depths of my handbag!
I am in a state of hideous shock. I was just a minute ago perusing the Bath Ballistic section of the Lush website, only to discover that my beloved Fairy Jasmine is not there!
It was the sweet Jasmine scent, the soft lilac colour that it turned the water, and the masses of glitter it contained that caused me to fall so deeply in love with Lush in the first place, and now they have done this!
Measures must be taken, we must act fast and hound them to add it to Retro Lush as soon as possible!
I think a moment of silence is appropriate for these sad times.
The Dellal on everybody's lips at the moment is the alluringly edgy Alice with her unique punk undercut and effortless rock-chick glamour, but since seeing these amazing red pumps on WWD today, my favour has been swung towards shoe designing sister Charlotte Dellal.
Charlotte Dellal is the creative brains behind shoe company Charlotte Olympia, a stylish and daring shoe label that debuted at London Fashion Week Spring/Summer 08 last autumn.
Her designs are influenced by nineteen-forties Hollywood and glamour is therefore high on the agenda in the form of vibrant and luxurious fabrics, and super high heels. These vertiginous red shoes with their ultra feminine shape and ruffle, and chunky angular platform encapsualte all there is the love about vintage style with an ultra-modern twist.
Amongst the 20 newbies that Lush have just added to their already vast range of wondrous bathing products is Porridge Soap. The delicious smelling new soap, which is made using Lush's new palm oil free soap recipe, contains masses of oats which buff away rough skin as you rub on the soap in the shower. The oats also impart their soothing properties onto the skin to smooth as soften as they exfoliate.
Men wearing make up is nothing new. It was practically uniform for eighties New Romantics and Goths, and it has made its way onto numerous male faces ever since in the form of a multitude of trends. While any discerning metrosexual will be familiar with Jean Paul Gaultier's male make-up range, Monsieur, which features products such as eyeliner and bronzer, hoards of teenage Pete Wentz wannabes have been stuck nicking their mum's eyeliner. Until now that is...
This week, Superdrug will launch Taxi, a men's make-up range that currently comprises of 'Guyliner' and 'Manscara', both priced at £6.50, so that even boys to whom the Selfridges beauty counter seems like a far off planet can work that smoky-eyed look with a product that is unquestionably manly.
While I am sure there will be much outcry (probably from that bastion of forward thinking, The Daily Mail) of, 'Make up, for men? But no, call the police, the world has gone mad!' I personally think men should be able to conceal the shadow of a hangover lurking under-eye with the magical Touche Eclat just like women can, and I am a huge fan of a smudge of kohl on a man a la Russell Brand!
The thing that amuses me however, is how when cosmetics are being marketed to men, it seems to have to come with a big flashing light that says, 'this is a manly product, look it says so on the package, definitly NOT FOR WOMEN'! Is there really any difference between Guyliner and Ecriture de Chanel other than a big fat 'I'm not gay' stamp of approval?
Ah well, boys are simple, but then we didn't need Manscara to tell us that did we?!
There has been a lot of hoo-ha surrounding the launch of vibrating mascaras, and we can finally find out what all of the fuss is about following the UK launch of Estee Lauder's Turbo Lash at Harrods last Saturday.
The combination of the unique mascara formula and the vibrating brush create dramatic effects in lengthening, thickening, separating and curling, and aside from that, it is a novelty beauty gadget that I can't wait to try!
Pick one up for £28 exclusively at Harrods.
Have you ever felt like overhauling your beauty ways and going green but not known where to start? Look no further than The Green Beauty Bible by beauty experts, Sarah Stacey and Josephine Fairley.
This fully illustrated compendium tells you literally everything you need to know about eco-beauty from make-up, to diet, to skincare. Celebrities such as Jo Wood, Alicia Silverstone, Bobbi Brown, Liz Earle and many more offer pearls of wisdom on how to stay naturally beautiful in harmony with nature.
The book is broken up into easy to follow categories such as skin, hair, fragrance etc, each of which features 'Tried and Tested' chapters where Sarah and Josephine rate the best natural version of pretty much every staple cosmetic you can think of. Alongside this are masses of green beauty tips such as how to make your own scrubs, quick fixes for tired skin, and diet tips to make sure what you put into your body is as good as what you put on your skin.
The Green Beauty Bible is a truly wonderful book and an absolute must whether you want to go all out and make your own cleansers like Jo Wood, or just learn a little more about ways to be gorgeous and green.
MAC is probably the best high fashion cosmetics brand, not just because of their consistently on-trend and hard wearing products but also because of their extensive portfolio of fashion designer collaborations.
The latest sees them team up with Indian designer Manish Arora. The centre piece of the collection will be 'Eyes on Manish', a six-shade eyeshadow palette, £30 which will be packaged with Manish's signature use of vibrant and outrageous colours.
The line which also features two shades of lipstick, two of lipglass and two shades of MAC's wonderful powder blush and will be available in the UK in October.
Good morrow young LCW readers. Apologies for my absence, I have been on my holidays and sadly the beach does not come with WiFi! I have however returned with beauty wisdom (and a tan to give Fake Bake a run for its money!) from afar.
If like me you have curly yet fine, frizzy hair, I'm sure you will have noticed that a simple dip in the sea can tame your mane into perfectly defined, non-frizzy curls thanks to the saltiness of the water. The same effect can however be recreated on your return to the sea-free urban jungle thanks to some clever marine inspired hair products.
Bumble and Bumble have created the amazing Surf Spray, which contains salt to help you achieve those messy curls as well as seaweed extract to nourish hair at the same time. GHD also do a Sea Spray which comes with all important UVA protection.
If you are feeling frugal though (which I am sure you will be having spent all your Euros on Sangria!) you can make your own! Simply get an empty spray bottle and fill it will mineral water and a tablespoon of good sea salt, and Voila! Home made Sea Spray. You can also add a teaspoon of your favourite conditioner if your hair is extra dry and keep that salon 'imperfect' beach look all year round.
This week, I have fallen completely, head over (now perfectly exfoliated) heels with Soap and Glory's Flake Away Spa Body Polish. With my holidays impending, I decided that some serious body buffing was in order, and now I just can't get enough of this scrub!
Flake Away is packed with sugar and ground peach kernels to provide plenty of exfoliation without being too harsh on the skin, while shea butter moisturises and nourishes the skin as all those nasty dead skin cells are buffed away. Peach and mandarin give it a gorgeous fruity scent which lingers subtly on the skin all day.
This treat of a scrub is available exclusively from Boots for a mere £5.99.
New Look has in the past always lurked towards the lower end of the high street, figuratively speaking, but it has recently looked like it is catching up with its catwalk copying competitors fast and their Autumn-Winter 08/09 collection seems to be further proof of this.
Tartan seems to be one of the dominant trends the high street have latched onto this season, Topshop and River Island having filled their collections with plenty of it, and New Look are in on it too. They have used it on the classic kilt pictured above £18, as well as on shoes for those who just want to give it a little nod without embracing it fully.
Structured sillhouettes filled this years AW catwalks and New Look have channelled the shape stylishly into the gorgeous monochrome coat £60, pictured above.
I have got a few pieces from New Look this Spring-Summer and been pretty pleased with them so I will definitely look forward to stocking up on their super-stylish yet bargalicious Autumn-Winter offerings!
Today I am bringing you lucky LCW readers a little treat with a sneak preview of River Island's Autumn-Winter 08/09 collection.
As was the case at Dolce and Gabanna and Henry Holland, tartan is high on the agenda with plaid skirts and jackets galore. I am a particular fan of the purple tartan kilt pictured above which will be priced at £29.99. Helped along by all the tartan, grunge is a prevailing theme with plenty of vintage style band t-shits and the zip detailed jeans, pictured above, that would give grunge queen Mary-Kate Olsen a run for her money.
Glamour was a dominant theme on the Autumn-Winter catwalks this year, and River Island have mixed it nicely into their edgy collection with a gorgeous emerald green satin blouse priced £29.99 and a cute vintage prom dress, pictured above priced £49.99 which will be perfect for bringing a bit of rock-chick chic to your Christmas party!
Here at The Liner, The Clutch and The Wardrobe, we are big fans of products that use as few artificial and chemical ingredients as possible. Nail Varnish is probably one of the worst offenders when it comes to using artificial ingredients and cheaper products often contain Formaldehyde. Yep that's the same stuff Damien Hirst used to preserved his cut up cow, do you really want to put that on your nails?
Nail Varnish mongers Butter London, who believe 'in colour, not carcinogens' have come up with '3-Free' nail products which are free of the three worst chemical cosmetic culprits, Formaldehyde, Tolulene, and DPT (Dibutyl Phthalate). This however, is not to the detriment of the nail varnish which comes in 45 high fashion, long lasting, boldly coloured shades. They also offer a wide range of nail and hand care products that are '3-Free'.
Visit the ultra-cool 'Anglomania' style website and get yourself hold of some!
I know you all can't wait until the launch of Vaseline's Rosy Lips Lip Therapy, but I may just have found something else to tickle the fancy of all you lip balm fanatics out there!
Liz Earle Naturally Active Skincare boats amongst their gorgeous line of natural cosmetics, Sheer Pink Lip Shimmer. The luxurious lip balm is made from the same formula as the classic Superbalm which is enriched with avocado oil, and vitamin E. Soothing Lavender and Chamomile soften lips and keep flaky skin at bay while hazelnut oil and shea butter thoroughly nourish lips and keep them free of painful cracks.
The essence of the Sheer Pink Lip shimmer though is the added tint and shimmer, allowing you to add a subtle amount of colour and shine to your look without having to go for a full on gloss. Perfect for that effortless 'no-make up' look we are all coveting this season! The product can also be used on cheeks as a subtle highlighter.
Liz Earle Naturally Active Skincare are all about getting the best out of natural ingredients so the balm is free of petroleum and scented with fragrant neorli esscence. Perfect for all you chemical conscious beauty junkies out there!
Following a tough and heated competition over the last twelve weeks, Alex was crowned the winner of the competition and dubbed Britain's Next Top Model in last night' s tense finale.
She beat off stiff competition from Catherine and Stephanie who came second and third respectively. While flame haired Catherine has a unique and stunning look, her shots were always more suited to high fashion, whereas Alex nailed this style as well as having a more universal commercial look. Similarly, Stephanie's gorgeously seductive features created some wonderful beauty shots, but didn't translate as well to the catwalk, an area that Alex also mastered proficiently.
Having entered the competition as an awkward teenager, hiding behind straggly hair extensions, Alex made the biggest journey in blossoming into a true fashion model. The shot that seemed to clinch the deal was a striking one of her reclining from a trapeze and looking like she stepped straight out Vogue!
Alex's prize includes a contract with Models 1, a Max Factor campaign and a six page spread and cover with Company magazine, so it looks like we will be seeing plenty more of her soon!
While Jean Paul Gaultier opted for striking blood red lips, and Chanel worked sultry, smoky eyes, Givency went for a more natural look at the Autumn-Winter 2008/9 couture show last week.
Luigi Mureno smoothed models hair back into what he described to WWD as an immaculate, fine textured 'ponytail de luxe', which revealed pale peachy skin and barely there make up.
Now all of us must have spent hours trying to cultivate the 'natural' look with masses of make up no doubt, but I would say that the key is in using only a few carefully chosen products.
- First of all, prep skin with a good quality tinted moisturiser such as Laura Mercier's classic one, then focus on making individual features look flawless.
- Illuminate eyes with a highlighting pencil such as Benefit's Eye Bright which will give the same definition to the eyes as an eyeshadow whilst maintaining a natural look. A simple slick of mascara will add the final touch to your 'naturally beautiful' eyes.
- Frame your face by keeping eyebrows groomed and defined. I am a huge fan of Urban Decay's Brow Box which comes with brow colour as well as finishing wax to keep brows extra slick.
- Finally, add a natural, rosy glow to lips and cheeks with Benefit's rose tinted Benetint Lip Balm.
Sometimes in the morning when I apply moisturiser, illuminator, sunscreen and foundation, I am left feeling that perhaps my beauty ritual has become somewhat excessive, let alone time consuming. But then all of the above are essential for achieving a naturally dewy, red patch free complexion.
It looks like adding a luminescent glow could get a whole lot easier with the forthcoming launch of Laura Mercier's Illuminating Tinted Moisturiser. The formula is the same as that of the legendary Laura Mercier tinted moisturisers, but with the addition of micronised pearls (all together now.. 'oooooh') which catch the light and leave your face all dewy and glowing without creating any unwanted shine. The product also contains SPF 20, which in my opinion should be mandatory in all skin care products, so that's one more step you can avoid when applying make-up.
Illuminating Tinted Moisturiser is not available just yet, but I promise to keep you posted!
Beauty has so far been bold at this week's couture shows, and John Paul Gaultier's Autumn/Winter show was no different.
Models wore their hair piled high, but what was most striking were their vibrant red lips. Bright colours have been huge this Spring /Summer, so just-bitten, cherry red makes the transition to Autumn perfectly.
The key to getting this look right is to use a good quality, highly pigmented red lipstick, and to line lips especially carefully to create a cleanly framed pout. Chanel's Le Crayon Levres in Roux gives a perfectly precise finish and comes with a handy brush to help blend the colour into your lips. When it comes to a good red lipstick, I have never found anything better than MAC's Russian Red, which provides incredibly intense, long lasting colour without drying out your lips.
While the Credit Crunch may be taking its toll on the actual collections at the couture shows this week, bad economy doesn't need to have an effect on beauty. The pieces shown at Chanel were perhaps a little more subdued than we are used to at a couture show but the hair and make up was really up to standard. Models wore sleek, helmet-like bobs, and sexy smoky eyes, both of which created a dramatic and glamorous look.
The presence of these styles at the Chanel show is further confirmation that we can expect beauty looks this Autumn that are far more striking than the whimsical, loose plaited, rosy cheeked look we have all been embracing this summer.
MAC's new Cult of Cherry collection with its deep, earthy tones, will be perfect for creating a gorgeous smoky eye look with a touch of colour. Similarly, the rich chocolate tones of the Nars Autumn/Winter collection will allow you to embrace the sultry eyed look with a little more subtlety for daytime.
I am not normally a huge fan of Vaseline Lip Therapy as I find it to dry out my lips a little, but if anything is going to change my mind, it will be their new Lip Therapy: Rosy Lips.
I absolutely LOVE Rose scented products and Rosy Lips is perfect for adding a touch of subtle pink to lips and even cheeks. I have had a long time love affair with Benefit's Benetint Lip Balm for adding a rosy glow, but since I have never really found that to be any more moisturising than cheaper lip balms such as Carmex, the £14.50 price tag may seem a bit steep compared to the mere £1.49 Rosy Lips will set you back.
The addition of rose and almond oil also make it more nourishing than the original formula so you will probably find that it dries lips out far less.
Rosy Lips is a definite cult product in the making, and will be available at Boots, Superdrug etc next month.
Don't you just love it when you have a bath with a Lush Bath Ballistic, and the whole house fills with the wonderful scent of Lush? The only problem is I am increasingly rarely getting time for baths, and the aromatherapy qualities of shower gel just don't cut it.
Lush however, genius as ever, have come up with the Emotibomb, which fizzes in the bottom of your shower and fills the bathroom with a cloud of vapour so that you can get an aromatherapy fix even when you're in a rush.
The Emotibomb is available in four varieties including, 'Too Drunk', to breath away a hangover, Lavender scented 'Up the Wooden Hill' to help ease you into sleep, 'Up you Get', which provides an awakening citrus blast, and the bluntly titled 'Sex in the Shower', for, you know.
I tried Up you Get for myself this morning, and it didn't half make the bathroom smell citrussy, and did indeed leave me feeling slightly more awakened than normal. My only complaint is that because you throw it on the shower floor to work its magic, you're not left with the scent on your skin as you are with a Bath Ballistic. But hey, you can't have everything!
The acronym ASOS has developed such a name for itself in online shopping, that I often forget it stands for As Seen on Screen. The screen it would seem though has a huge impact on what people are buying after it was reported today that ASOS have seen a 95% profit increase since the release of the Sex and the City movie back in May. There might be a credit crunch on, but I guess we all just had to get our hands on a studded waist belt like the one Carrie wore for most of the film!
Now that the SATC cash cow has all but dried up and passed out, ASOS are showing us how to look as vintage and whimsical and Kiera Knightly and Sienna Miller in The Edge of Love. The floral tea dresses and vintage lace blouses, not to mention the festival friendly wellies that the pair wore in the film are perfectly on trend for summer, so what better excuse could we have to emulate everyone's favourite English beauties?
I love the bow-backed pleated trench they are recommending, and I will definitely be getting myself a Sienna-esque straw trilby for my holidays! ASOS even have screen beauty covered with a wealth of recommendations for achieveing the glamorous 1940's look seen in the film.
Kanye West may be a huge star in the music world, but he managed to enjoy relative obscurity at the Dior Homme show in Paris yesterday as all the paps were busy mobbing Karl Lagerfeld.
The presence of Chanel's creative director at a Paris fashion show may seem as obvious as fish and chips on a pier, but according to Hadley Freeman, his attendance caused such furor amongst the press as it marks a step up for the flagging Dior Homme. The label which has in the past had somewhat 'flashy' associations, has developed a slightly cooler air, thus attracting the likes of Kanye and Karl.
Quite frankly though, if the Kaiser cares, we care, even if menswear is nowhere near as exciting as womenswear!
I am so addicted to The Hill's this season that I decided to wear my hair in a variety of plaits recently in emulation of the show's star, Lauren Conrad.
While I managed to create a great Heidi (no, not that one!) plaited up do, and an Alice-Band effect with my plaits, I found it pretty tricky to achieve the French plait that LC has been wearing in her hairline for most of the series.
That was until I discovered this handy video that fellow Beauty Bloggers, Kiss and Make Up have put on YouTube. French plaiting really isn't that hard once you have got the knack, so give it a go! I tried it and now I feel like a dead ringer for LC, well my hair does anyway. Now I just have to find a way to get myself down to Les Deux...
Jessica Au won the River Island Gold award with her bright, psychedelic, floral print menswear collection at Graduate Fashion Week this month, and it looks like she was right on the money with predicting the coming trends for menswear, bright and floral.
As the Spring-Summer 2009 Menswear shows in Milan draw to a close and the fashion parade decamps to Paris, we are left feeling rather rosy with Missoni and Cavalli's flowery prints fresh in our minds.
Perhaps we can make boyfriends recycle our florals from this season. They could turn a blouse into a shirt, update a bright t-shirt with a floral neck scarf maybe? There is a 'Credit Crunch' on after all!
Fashion continually draws on reference. We all love Mary-Kate Olsen for her 'stylishly homeless' shabby chic style, and Kate Moss for her messy, over-partied, rock chick look, but do we ever stop to think what these references really mean?
For all MK's oversized lumberjack shirts, and Moss' mussed up hair there are plenty more negative implications to be taken from the points of reference from which their styles are taken. Is a coat that's filthy from sleeping in the street cool, or are dark concave eyes from lack of sleep and too many drugs sexy? Could we perhaps be trivialising issues by turning them into fashionable styles?
It is for this reason that Vivienne Westwood's 'message of tolerance', demonstrated in her 'gypsy' themed menswear collection in Milan this week, has not been well received. At her show on Sunday, Westwood presented her models as 'rough, stylish and hardened', in order to celebrate the 'outcasts of society'.
Milan's assessor for Industry and Fashion, Tiziana Maiolo who spent time working in gypsy camps in and around Milan however, has criticised Westwood for indulging in 'a romantic notion about gypsies that is 100 years out of date'.
Indeed, presenting a romanticised, glamorised notion of a troubled community could perhaps be considered a little innappropriate, do you agree?
It may only be June, but as Summer is yet to make a proper appearance yet, I have decided to stick with a couple of staple tea dresses and start thinking about my Autumn-Winter look. I have already decided to fully indulge my Blair Waldorf fantasy and dye my hair dark, but what to wear?
I was pretty excited then on Friday, to steal a sneak peek at Topshop's Autumn-Winter collection from Fur Coat, No Knickers.
If Graduate Fashion Week is anything to go by, then sheers will be one of the main trends to make its way from the catwalk to the high street, and indeed, Topshop have plenty of it! I am a huge fan of the Darkside range, in particular the black pleated dress, which is not entirely dissimilar to one by Oscar De La Renta featured in Vogue this month, but is a good £2000 cheaper!
Other highlights include a sexy Tuxedo jacket, and plenty of Henry Holland inspired tartan pieces which will be perfect for channeling your inner Mary-Kate Olsen!
My mind boggled when I heard about Spinlash, an electronically rotating mascara a few weeks ago, so now that I have heard about plans for Estee Lauder to launch Turbo Lash All Effects Motion Mascara, and Lancome's release of Oscillation, both vibrating mascaras, my melon is utterly twisted. Vibrating Mascara? Surely that is dangerous, or would at least tickle your eye!
Well, beauty experts suggest that to achieve a thick, full lash, you should apply mascara in a light zig-zag motion from the root to the tip of the lash, so with a vibrating mascara, you get a similar motion except the work is done for you. I use the term work loosely here, as I personally have never found the zig-zagging too much effort (though very effective!), but hey, a new beauty gadget is never a bad thing is it!?
Both Lancome's and Estee Lauders electric offerings will be available exclusively at Sak's Fifth Avenue in July and Selfridges in London later in the year.
Products that are kind to the environment are a great idea. But what is an even better idea is products that care for the environment and its inhabitants such as David Babaii's new haircare range for Wild Aid.
The celebrity hair stylist has come up with a range of hair products fronted by Kate Hudson, that are not only formulated from natural ingredients, but that will generate money for wildlife chairty Wild Aid.
The range carries the tag line, 'It's Beautiful to be Good', and beautiful you will be after using the luxurious products. Highlights include Bohemian Beach Spray, a light and nourishing spray that contains Dead Sea salt to create natural texture, and rich Shea Butter, an ingredient that is popping up in a lot of hair products recently, to keep hair soft.
All David Babaii's products are free of petrochemicals, parabens and sulfates. Naturally, they are never tested on animals either.
Sadly, the products are not available in the UK at the moment, but then that's why us English Roses love to shop online!
Being super stylish comes with a certain nonchalant air, but that doesn't mean you should negelct your safety. That's the message being bandied around in a new French road safety campaign anyway, featuring none other than the style master himself, Count Von Lagerfeld.
The poster reads 'It's yellow, it's ugly, it doesn't go with anything, but it could save your life'.
Good on you Kaiser Karl for reminding us to remember our green cross codes, no matter how chic we are! I hope you remember to wear one of these bad boys when riding your Chanel bike!
The House of Viktor and Rolf Exhibition opened to the public at the Barbican yesterday, following Tuesday's launch attended by famous fashionistas Alexa Chung, Kelly Osborne, Erin O'Connor and Mischa Barton, so of course I hopped on the pink snake and got myself down there for a look.
The retrospecive exhibition showcases the Avant Garde Dutch duo's work from the past 15 years. In true Viktor and Rolf style the exhibition is not laid out as a simple display, but rather as an installation featuring a 6 meter tall house, on which miniature dolls stand wearing every signature piece that V&R have come up with since 1992. The dolls are reflective of the miniature mannequins designers such as Dior and Schiaparelli used during the second world war when fabrics were too scarce and expensive to justify making up life size pieces to show to prospective customers. Not only do the dolls add an interesting spooky effect to the installation, they allow Viktor and Rolf to nod to the fashion greats and the decadence their clothes represented, the influence of which is clearly felt in their collections.
Surrounding the 'House of Viktor and Rolf' are the life size pieces, alongside footage of their ever innovative catwalk shows. Highlights include, 2005's Flowerbomb, where Victor and Rolf revealed a pink and gold version of the black collection they had just shown amidst an explosion of petals and glitter.
Also on display was Russian Doll 1999-2000. During the catwalk show for this couture collection, instead of using a parade of models, V&R showed one model on a spinning podium and layered the collection onto her, one piece after the other, like a Russian Doll. As well as demonstrating some beautiful beaded pieces, Russian Doll provides an effective visual comment on the potentially suffocating nature of fashion.
The exhibition not only displays some wonderful pieces, but shows Viktor and Rolf's wonderful ability to blur the boundaries between fashion and art. It will be on display at The Barbican until the 21st September.
If you love shoes as much as I do, you will undoubtedly also be lusting after the YSL star detail sandals, which have got to be the most beautiful shoes of this season. However, stars are a fleeting trend (and they cost as much as rent!), so the £560 price tag may be a little steep.
It is a good job then, that trusty catwalk copiers Topshop have come up with a delightful pair of star adorned sandals (pictured) of a similar ilk. Alright, I know they're not as glamorous, but they are flat, which means they will be both comfortable and suitable for running for the bus, and they cost a mere £22! Alas, the woes of real life.
The world of beauty is a vast one, and without some form of reference, how are we supposed to know our highlighters from our contourers, our moisturisers from our serums, let alone what to do with them? I personally relied on hours of messing around and experimenting, but as this resulted in more than one misguided beauty look (Alisha's Attic eyeshadow, colour mousse, don't get me started), I think I would have been far better of with a nice big compendium of beauty secrets.
To celebrate their tenth anniversary, everyone's favourite cosmetic emporium, Sephora, have produced Sephora: The Ultimate Guide to Makeup, Skin and Hair from the Beauty Authority. The book contains advice on everything from lip plumping and eye bag reducing to how long it is best to keep products for, as well as tips from celebrity make up artists.
I think this would make an amazing gift for a teenage girl just getting into beauty and cosmetics as well as veteran beauty junkies like myself!
River Island is often a shop I neglect due to some rather unsightly teenage dalliances with glitter applique, but now that Topshop have fully taken over the high street with their catwalk copies, it looks as though they have really upped their game and have come up with some really great pieces for this Summer.
As well as sponsoring the hugely respectable Graduate Fashion Week recently, their collections seem to have become far more catwalk inspired, particularly with their line of gorgeous floral summer dresses which seem to nod to those paraded on the runways by Luella, Stella McCartney and Ralph Lauren.
I absolutely love the Rose print maxi-dress (pictured) and at only £34.99, it is a lot cheaper that many other high street alternatives.
These days, just about everyone who is anyone is saving the world, and as if that wasn't enough, they're doing it in style.
Following Anya Hindmarsh's highly lucritive 'I'm Not a Plastic Bag' totes for Sainsbury's last year, it is unsurprising that Tesco are jumping on this particular bandwagon with the launch of a line of Eco-Bags by Yummy Mummy favourite, Cath Kidston.
The bags will launch next month in two classic prints, floral (pictured), and pastel blue with white polka dots. Tesco will then introduce the bags in four more limited edition prints over the next six months, and they will no doubt fly off the shelves in the same manner that Hindmarsh's did.
Cynicism aside, the bags are made from entirely recycled materials, and all proceeds with go to Marie Curie Cancer Care. There is also far less risk that they will split and drop your shopping all over the bus!
Josh Wood and Belle Cannon have been offering their combined 45 years of hairdressing experience to celebrity heads at their exclusive London salon, Real Hair for over 10 years. But now it looks like us mere mortals can get our hands on a little bit of the magic thanks to the launch of a line of Real Hair products, available exclusively at Real Hair and Harvey Nichols.
The line features a cleansing shampoo, packed with B and C vitamin rich acerola fruit and moisturising conditioner, laced with babassu oil which when activated by body temperature, coats the hair shaft to create a healthy, vibrant shine. Extra nourishment and protection can be gained from the rich masque, shea butter infused serum, and a conditioning spray to protect even fine, fragile hair whilst detangling. The conditioning spray also contains an essential SPF to protect hair from the damaging effects of the sun.
Prices range from £15 to £55 which may sound a lot, but is a whole lot cheaper than a haircut at Real Hair!
Plaits and braids and big beauty news this Summer, and every time I have seen queens of the plait trend, Lauren Conrad and Nicole Richie touting their twisted tresses about town recently, I have been dying to try out this look for myself. Every day this week then, I decided to work a new 'twist' on the plait into my hair style.
I created a plaited 'Alice band' look by taking a section of hair from just behind each ear, plaiting it, then bringing it over the top of my head like a hair band and securing with a hair grip behind the opposite ear. This look was so simple and easy to do, but ended up added a real grecian goddess glamour to my hair and I received a lot of complements.
The best look I tried this week though, was a fully tied up Heidi plait look (pictured). All you do to create this style is divide your hair into two, plait each side, then secure both plaits to the back of your head. It is such a great look as it fully allows you to disguise a bad hair day, as it all ends up pinned to the back of your head anyway! While my hair still looked a bit messy, I think this added a fun, hippie element to the look.
I don't half love make-up palettes, but don't you always find that you use one or two of the colours to death, and always end up left with one completly untouched eyeshadow? Half used palettes could now be a thing of the past though following the launch of Bobbi Brown's personally customised palettes.
All you do, is purchase one of the empty mirrored palettes, then fill it with your very own selection of cheek and eye colours. You can choose from matte or shimmer finishes, in a huge selection of both natural and bright colours. I personally can't wait to get my hands on the rich, shimmery 'Eggplant' eye colour!