Wednesday, 28 April 2010


As a freelance beauty journalist I am sent lots of delicious beauty products to try and test, which I really appreciate and after 10 years my heart still skips a beat when I see great products.

However, over the years you do get to love and trust (I have had my face ravaged over the years by dodgy, harsh skincare) certain brands and I love Elemis. Both their skincare and bodycare is really exceptional and that's rare, it’s like a girl who is really pretty with a banging body- doesn’t happen often, it's usually one or the other, right? Whenever I am feeling achy or need a bit of an at home spa day I reach for Elemis. After I pulled an all nighter writing a while ago, for the first time I actually did my back in (I must be getting old) and I turned to the Elemis Aching Muscle Super Soak, which smells all medicinal and like someone is giving you a hug. Energising and warming juniper, clove, lavender, sea salt and birch soothed my sore muscles as it’s like bathing in warm deep heat – lovely.

I also love the Exotic Frangipani Monoi Bath & Shower Cream as it’s free from skin drying sodium laureth sulphate, parabens and smells of holidays in the sun. The Monoi Moisture Melt is also a favourite with it’s rich coconut coprah oil , which is brilliant in afro hair as a leave in conditioner, as it softens and nourishes frazzled hair.

As an Elemis devotee I am really excited that they have developed a new fragrance, which embodies all the Elemis ethos of luxury, high quality ingredients and mind tingling aromatics with their Elemis Eau de Parfum, £35 for 28 ml, Created in Grasse the home of fragrance with Noella Gabriel, Director of Product and Treatment Development for Elemis and her French perfumer the fragrance is modern, sophisticated yet comforting. Zesty Elemi develops into a rich vertiver and refreshing marine accord with warm base notes of patchouli, gaiacwood and oak moss.

I am really glad Elemis have not gone down the ‘me too’ gimmick route with this fragrance but have created something in keeping with who they are, which is pure class and integrity. The fragrance is not one size fits all but really develops well on the skin and smelt different over time on all the other journalists at the launch, which I like as it’s like a fine bottle of wine that lives and breathes rather than being a synthetic bland uniform affair.

The bottle also screams Elemis as the lines are clean and elegant, it reminds me of something which would be on found on a 1930s Hollywood starlet’s dressing table. For a touch of Elemis you can wear all day, do try this new fragrance and remember to stop and breathe (that’s very Elemis too).

Monday, 26 April 2010


The best beauty brings out the child in you. It makes you want to play and gives you the shivers up and down your spine because you are so excited. Things that made my 7 year old heart skip a beat were cool pencil cases, smelly rubbers (do you remember cola, strawberry, watermelon flavours, which would make you sniff your page like a coke head in training, a bit dodgy now I come to think of it), Garbage Pail Kids stickers (I was a bit of a tomboy), Gem, Rainbow Bright, My Little Pony all the good stuff.

After almost a decade in the beauty industry I still get excited over great products and feel like a kid on Christmas morning opening up presents. I got that feeling when I saw Clarins Limited Edition Instant Smooth Crystal Lip Balm, £15.50, 0800 036 3558, These 3 shades of lip balm Crystal Red, Crystal Coral and Crystal, a natural pink all remind me of a boiled sweet or something you would suck on like a Chupa Chup on the way home from school. They are simply delicious! The finish is that of a sheer lipstick with a hint of colour great for warm summer days and balmy nights but feels like a lip balm and is non sticky. The formula is laced with gelled oils instant of traditional lipstick waxes to keep it light. It also contains  Proceramides for a smoothing and comfortable feel on the lips and plant based pigments for a long lasting natural finish. They are limited edition so I suggest you grab one today as you won’t want to miss out or you could always do swapsies with your BBF.


Sunday, 25 April 2010


I’m having an Essie moment right now. I have always loved the nail brand as the formula doesn’t chip diddy chip and the colours are always exciting and imaginative. Another thing I love about Essie is each season they come out with a Wedding Collection with the sheerest prettiest shades and a perfect pink or beige, which manages to look different and totally desirable, even though Essie have a million different pinks. When the 2010 wedding collection I love Pillow Talk, £8.95,, a great nude. I have also been wearing Angora Cardi, a creamy mauve and Bright Tights, a cool neon orange that pops on tanned and darker skin tones. Nail polishes are one of the quickest and noncommittal accessories so have fun and experiment this summer!

Friday, 23 April 2010


I just wanted to say a massive congrats to everyone who was involved including the lovely Margherita Taylor pictured above in the Aveda UK Walk for Water on April 19th, a 5 mile walk (the average distance women in developing countries have to walk each day to get clean water) during Earth Month which helped raise £135,000 for WaterAid, providing clean water around the world. According to the World Health Organization 1 in 7 people do not have access to clean water, which makes me feel really lucky and privileged that all I have to do is turn on a tap for clean water. Aveda are hoping to raise £2.3 million to protect clean water for people in regions such as Nepal and Ethiopia.

Well Done Aveda! 


Yesterday I went to a fab Giorgio Armani fragrance launch at Soho Hotel. Mr Armani’s latest fragrance offering is really mouth watering and easy to wear and was inspired by a mojito (my favourite cocktail).

Acqua di Gioia, prices start from £33 for 30 ml, available nationwide from July, hits the spot when it comes to the perfect summer fragrance, as it has an uplifting crushed mint leaves accord along with Italian lemon (the prized first pick of the season) and a sexy water jasmine, which isn’t as animalic as a traditional jasmine note as it’s grown in water, clever eh! The fragrance develops into a sensual woody smooth affair with cedarwood, brown sugar (inspired by the mojito but not too sweet) and labdanum.

I like the watery energetic nature of the fragrance but the water jasmine and cedarwood keep me from yawning -I’m an Oriental type of girl; I need a bit of sex in my fragrances. To me a sign of a good fragrance is if it can take me on a sensory journey. One whiff of this and I was in Havana, Cuba the place I had my first mojito back in the day when I was on a shoot for Tatler, so it definitely passed that test. I think this will do really well as it’s like a fresh yet sophisticated hit of summer in a bottle without being chavvy or cheap. Acqua di Gioia is class all the way just like Mr Armani himself.


As well as being smoking hot, Tom Ford really knows what women want and tomorrow Mr Ford is giving us all just that with the launch of  his delicious new lipstick range the Private Blend Lip Color Collection. The line boasts 12 shades and brace yourself comes in at £35, 0870 034 2566,, but I think it’s worth it for the sheer quality and decadence and the range really does have something for everyone with nudes, reds, browns and deep plums. Besides £35 is a lot cheaper than a mini break and with the crunch you have to get your kicks somewhere, right?  

The packaging has that expensive heavy weight to it and a reassuring click. The formula is really smooth, nourishing and creamy as it’s laced with Brazilian murumuru butter, Chamomilla Flower oil and Soja Seed extract. The lipstick bullet is also embossed with TF, which is tres chic. I love the pigment, it is in fact ridiculously rich and as I’m typing I can still see a faint smear of some lipstick on my hand, it’s been there for hours, even with me washing my hands OCD style- love it.

I’m loving the Black Orchid and Bruised Plum shade for my dark skin tone (very Billy Holiday without the smack problem) and I love the True Coral shade and classic Blush Nude, which I think will fly off the shelves for the summer. If you’re a bit of a scaredy cat when it comes to proper full on pigment you can use the lipstick as a stain by dabbing it onto the lips with your fingers and then pop a gloss on top. I like to use it straight from the tube for an intense look, which is very Ingrid Bergman/ Film Noir/ 40s. Tom Ford thank you so much for bringing sexy back.

Thursday, 22 April 2010


Oh the sun is shining and I have cracked open my sunglasses and I think summer is finally on the way. With all this sunshine make sure to use a good sunscreen. All skin tones need to use a good sunscreen, even black skin tones. I remember when I was 14 I spent a summer in Corsica and marched around in the mid day sun for weeks on end and actually burnt my shoulders- it was a real eye opener. I have discovered a new broad spectrum sunscreen Daily Essential Moisturiser SPF 50 +, £25.50,, by Australian company Alpha – H, which has a whooping SPF 50+ . The formula is laced with calming Aloe Vera, Vitamin E a powerful antioxidant and Cera Alba extracted from honeycomb, which helps to lock moisture into the skin. I love the fact it’s weightless and water resistant and doesn’t leave a weird blue tinge on my dark skin like most sun protection. Grab a bottle today to be safe in the sun and to make sure you don’t end up looking like a crocodile Hermes Birkin bag in 20 years time. 

Monday, 19 April 2010


Aveda is one of my favourite brands. I love the quality of the products and the way they make me feel like the Rosemary Mint Hand and Body Wash (makes having a shower feel like a spa experience), the Calming Body Cleanser (the rose and vanilla are delicious) and the All- Sensitive Body Formula is aroma free and is great on the scalp and body for locking in moisture for sensitive souls. Finally, the Hand Relief hand cream is amazing for dry hands without being greasy and gross and quite frankly the name makes me laugh- I love a bit of smut.
However, what I love most about Aveda is that they are socially aware and responsible. This year during Aveda’s April Earth Month campaign they are looking to raise funds for clean water projects around the world. When you buy an Aveda Light The Way Candle, £15, The limited edition candle is totally soothing with 100% certified organic ingredients such as French Lavender and clary sage and the soy wax burns cleanly. The best part of enjoying the candle is that you will be helping others as Aveda will donate £12.76 per candle sold in the UK to its Global partner the GGF (Global Greengrants Fund), who provide grants for grass roots organisations working for clean water around the world as well as Hope for Haiti. If all the candles are sold customers will help Aveda to donate £7.7 million globally!

This week Aveda are also organising a Walk for Water with proceeds going to WaterAid, – a 5 mile walk, which symbolises the average distance nearly 1 billion people in the developing world have to walk to get clean water. If you would like to take part please do visit and

Well done Aveda!

Monday, 12 April 2010


When I think of long lasting foundation I think of South African air hostesses of the 80s. As I sat on a plane as a child I would be hypnotized by their thick orange make up, which would precisely stop just by the jaw line, which is never ever a good look. I would also be fascinated by the deep dehydration lines and the way their oily skin made their foundation go blotchy and cakey. The whole horrible mess would make a 24 year women look 100 years old. Even at 8, I wanted to give these women a glass of water (for the dehydration) and hose them down and start again with their make up. Beauty was in my bones even back then! My long lasting foundation phobia has now come to an end, as thank God there is a new generation of foundation you can turn to and I am loving Bobbi Brown’s Natural Finish Long Lasting Foundation SPF 15, £28,

If you have oily/ combination skin this foundation will give you a soft semi-matte finish, as it’s oil free and uses sponge like powders to help absorb excess oil, which won’t look mask like. You also won’t have to powder your nose a thousand times a day as the transfer resistant formula helps fight humidity for up to 8 hours. It also comes in 20 shades, which should be the norm but isn’t- so well done Bobbi Brown. Grab a bottle today for shine free skin that will look good even if you are sky high.

Thursday, 8 April 2010


I love girly gadgets. I love my iphone, I love eye serums in rollerballs and eye shadow palettes with pull out trays. Ohhh they’re all so dinky and cute! As summer approaches, L’Oreal Paris has brought out a new beauty toy to play with called the Scrublet. The Scrublet is a super soft cleansing disc, which can be used to give your skin a really deep down clean. The 500 soft flexible modules in this little scrubber helps to mould to facial contours and massages the skin to help get your glow on. It simply pops out of the packaging, which looks like a souped up new ipod and you can even stick the scrublet onto your bathroom wall or mirror to help it stay clean. The Scrublet comes with L’Oreal Paris’ latest range of facial washes and there is one for every skin type with Foaming Gel Wash for normal combination skin, Foaming Gel Wash for blemish prone skin, Foaming Cream Wash for Dry skin and the Foaming Gentle Scrub for all skin types and at £4.99, available nationwide, you can’t go wrong. I also love the visual of Freida ‘Latika’ Pinto, she looks so fresh and clean. Grab a scrublet and get scrubbing.

Wednesday, 7 April 2010


I'm so excited that the lovely James Read, Celebrity Tanning expert who works with Lady Gaga, Mariah Carey and Paris Hilton asked me to do an interview on his fabulous tanning website Ask I mentioned on my last post lots of black girls and A-listers fake tan to get that glowy, glossy skin you only find in a music video. Please do check out my full interview on and check out the site for the best ways to tan, so you don't end up looking like the queen of the Guidettes Snooki from Jersey Shore!

Thursday, 1 April 2010


A few weeks ago my husband and I were lucky enough to create this film through our beauty consultancy business Couture Communications with Clarins for their latest innovative fake tan launch Delectable Self Tanning Mousse SPF 15, £20, available nationwide from May. The film features the fabulous James Read, Celebrity Tanning Expert  as his natural and superstar tans are loved by A-Listers such as Lady Gaga, Paris Hilton and new Victoria Secrets model Rosie Huntingley-Whiteley. The new fake tan has an amazing fluffy mousse texture, which just melts into the skin and doesn’t have a colour guide, which means your sheets can breath a sign of relief. It also smells delicious with a scent of peaches and a hint of almonds. It leaves skin feeling smooth and soft with Mirabelle plum kernel oil and skin soothing aloe, which is also a powerful anti-oxidant

I don’t fake tan myself but lots of black girls and celebrities do to get that music video glowy and glossy skin that seems to sparkle.  Now I have been told by lots of insider experts, which black A-listers are said to fake tan but I’m scared to mention them by name in case I get my ass sued so let’s play a guessing game.

1.   This good girl has gone bad and loves Rude Boys

2.   She ain’t no single girl since her man put a ring on it

3.   If you look at me that way again I am going to smash you in the face with my Iphone Beatch.

4.   I want my green room filled with rainbows, white puppies and butterflies please.

Are you feeling me???

Anyway, please do check out this fab video for the best tips and tricks to getting the perfect tan every time- all Summer long!


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