The Look: A Self Portrait Through Others, available here
When it comes to make up I generally aim for less than perfection.
I mean, I really appreciate a pristine face but personally, I like things to be a little bit messed up. Like you’re having a bit too much of a good time to worry about everything being neat as a pin. My sister, (who I think we’ve gathered, it my guru when it comes to beauty) (apart from my hair, my hair belongs to my mother) (Yes indeed Doctor, the same time next week is fine) told me once at an impressionable age that I should always arrive at a party looking like I’ve just come from one.
But recently I’ve been increasingly seduced by the idea of a perfect cat eye. Well maybe not a whole cat. Not a big in your face flick like a Nike swoosh, more like a little baby kitten. A subtle nod to my sixties obsession (no really, just check out my Tumblr if you don’t believe me) and also a concession to looking just a little tiny bit more, you know, together.
I quite like the idea of a pen to draw with. I mean, generally, I like drawing with a pen. So Eyeko eyeliners made me all excited plus they are a London thing, boom, that’s a good enough reason right there.
I like the simplicity, they do a full size pen and also a Skinny Mini version for a more precise line. Similar really to the grading of my Rotary pens, so that makes me feel all comfortable and at home. It stays on, doesn’t smudge and all that good stuff. But you know the best bit?
Putting it on.
It’s quite possible that the application itself, which still takes me a good few minutes, (although I reckon I could improve on my personal best time quite soon with a little practice) (competitive? Nooo) is actually more fun that the result. It’s a bit more of a ritual than just smudging on some kohl, makes me feel all Taste of Honey and could totally be addictive.
It makes me laugh, too.
Those weird faces you have to pull to check your lines are even on both sides, oh, and why, please, is it impossible to apply eyeliner with your mouth closed?
OK, the snow has stopped being fun and there are workmen ripping apart my house (long story). Let’s free associate:
What does that make you think of?
teenage idea of sophistication,
I know, I know. Not good.
And yet…I saw a girl on the street wearing a french manicure recently with no sense of irony. Coupled with an impeccable outfit and gold toes, her pale pink nails with little new moons of cream at the tip looked really, oh go and shoot me, they looked really fresh. And I wanted them, actually.
But no, surely not, the French manicure can’t really be back can it?
And then, I found this, which is really cute and makes Lisa’s nails look like they’re wearing little navy pumps with ankle socks. (Yes, indeed, I may be losing my mind at this point. As I mentioned, I’ve not been well).
What do we think? Is this a ‘thing’?
Would you wear a French manicure again?
Eau Dynamisante smells like summer.
Honestly, that’s a lot. It might even be enough, but wait, there’s more.
Eau Dynamisante smells like being fifteen.
Yep, true story. And really, a beauty product that makes you feel fifteen has, essentially, hit pay dirt. Am I going to buy this forever? Well yes. Yes I am.
When I actually was fifteen, I was sent (for reasons not entirely clear but I’m sure terribly well intentioned and educational) to stay with a family that I didn’t know in France…somewhere, for three or four weeks. Now this was a time of great discovery on many levels, you can imagine, but one of the key discoveries I made on that trip was how to sneak into the mothers bathroom and access the beauty products of a real live genuine French Woman. (I know, you’d have loved me in your house wouldn’t you?)
Now, whether the patient and kind mother of this family noticed that I smelt of her scent and that all her moisturisers had disappeared alarmingly quickly, I really don’t know. But she was kind enough not to say anything and when I left she gave me a little gift of, guess what?
My own bottle of Eau Dynamisante to take back to suburbia so that I could swan around like the true sophisticate I knew myself to be.
I’ve been on a bit of a Summer boot camp these past few weeks, reinstated my exercise routine, been trying to eat right, all that. Everyone I know is raving about coconut water post workout to replace minerals lost when you, er, glow. So, naturally enough I thought I’d give it a go.
Now I’m really trying here because I do honestly want to be that healthful, effortless girl who has everything in control and basically knocking back the old coconut water with abandon was really representing this to me, right?
But I have to say, health kick or no, there is altogether too much kick in this stuff.
It tastes fine while you’re drinking it, then BANG, it gets you. No no no. And the flavoured ones are not much better.
Such a shame, apart from anything else, look how pretty! But it’s water all the way for me from now on, less glamorous, but true.
Have any of you guys tried this and liked it?
Aha! Holiday time and, given the ‘Summer’ we’ve had here in London, about time too.
Packing is always a big deal isn’t it? What to take, what to leave behind, what looks good in one place looks totally wrong in another and all of that. I’ve got my suitcase packing pretty down by now but what I’m really obsessive about is the carry on situation. Wait, that sounds like a film, but you know what I mean, the stuff you actually have with you when you fly. The stuff that protects you from the budget airline with the screaming baby you know is going to sit near you.
Now this is all a lot less fun since the security got tightened up post 9/11 but still, there are certain things I deem essential in flight.
So, with apologies to these guys, this is my list..
Big pashmina (aka the comfort blanket) because planes are always cold.
Cosy cardigan, see above.
Socks, see above. (Now actually don’t look, they’re not beautiful any more, but they are snuggly soft and cashmere.)
Fan, because sometimes, planes are hot.
iPad, hello Easyjet.
iPhone, yeah Mac addiction, whatever.
Headphones, see above.
Eyemask, nicked from previous flight, for sensory deprivation.
Moleskin notebook and pencil, for ideas and because pens always explode on me in planes. I have the clumsy thing.
Wallet, obviously, with passport and all that jazz.
Camera, never far from my person, would never check it.
Massive sunglasses, I know the smaller ones are cooler but I just like ‘em big.
Stuff to read, of course.
Sweets for take off and landing.
(Now, this is the bit that got trickier, but with judicious use of sample sizes and a clear ziplock, I find it’s all still possible.)
Bioderma cleanser, possibly for flight but really in case my luggage gets lost.
Avene water spray, yum.
Bioderma sunscreen, really in case my luggage gets lost, are you getting the theme here?
Dr Hauschka lip balm, seriously the best.
Mario Badescu Control Cream, because, clearly, I need control, and just in case my…you know.
Mini toothbrush and toothpaste, because I like to brush ok?
Ducray hand cream and nail file, for distracting myself. We’re in the air you know, it makes me a leeeetle bit nervous sometimes.
Lavender oil, we’re in the air..
Rescue Remedy, yeah, d’you think?
And then really in case my luggage gets lost, in the black pouch, emergency bikini, underwear, rolled up tshirt and silk slip dress/nightie. Just in case is all I’m saying, just in case.
Big bag to put it all in.
(Full disclosure the source of all the luggage losing paranoia stems from a holiday I took with a group of friends about eight years ago. All the suitcases went on, all the suitcases rolled off..wait, all except mine. Now this would have been ok had I not been with a group made up entirely of boys. Not a bikini or moisturiser among the lot of them. So there you are, this is how I deal.)
(And actually, of course, it didn’t matter a bit even at the time because we were all having way too much fun but anyway)
OK, I’m stopping, I’m stopping.
What about you, what do you have to have with you?
Sometimes I suspect that I’m just a bit rubbish at being a girl.
Earlier in the week I went for a facial. Now, I’m saying that like it’s something I do all the time but, because of the lack of basic girl skills I’ve actually only had one a couple of times ever. My problem is not with the facial itself, mask that makes you feel like you’re trapped under a rock, squeezing and tutting, hot, cold, hot, all fine. My problem is that when you come out, all pink and shiny and blotchy (but knowing you’re going to look fabulous the next day, right?) with hair like a crazy lady with little bits of face pack nestled in it (I know, it’s an unbelievably beautiful picture I’m painting here for you), when you come out in this state and head home why do you then bump in to everybody you have ever met ever? And why does everyone you see fancy a chat?
Paper bag? Balaclava? Private chauffeur?
Told you, rubbish.
Gah! Spent today shooting a 1960’s inspired story with the lovely Lucy from Premier. More to follow..am mid edit!