; une tasse: a beauty and casual fashion blog: 2009

Misa Nail Lacquers

When I was studying at LCF, I was based at the glamourous(!) Hackney campus on Mare St and across the road was a nail beauty supply store. I can't be sure but I swear they used to sell OPI, but as I was never interested in nail polishes I never went to check it out. Last week I got my hair cut nearby and decided to pay a visit. There are mostly wholesale products but the back wall of the shop has a very large display of Misa nail polishes. I had never heard of the brand before but they looked great and I figured why not?

I chose 2 colours (which I can't remember the name of, I'm sorry!) and a non yellowing base/top coat called Breakneck.

I like that the glass bottle is chunky and the lid is the same as OPI's. You also get the same amount of polish as OPI - 15ml, but at a fraction of the price. These were £2.50 each!

I've been wearing this lovely nude mauve colour for the past week and so far it's been great. It hasn't faded or chipped and I love the glossy finish. I will definitely go back for more but I don't think I would purchase the base/top coat because it peels off so easily (or maybe it was old stock - who knows?).

But if you are ever in East London (it's a short bus ride from Bethnal Green station), it would be worthwhile to check this shop out.

USA Nails & Beauty Supply.
235 Mare St
London E8. 3NS

Inspiration: Bollywood Beauties

As a brown girl growing up in London, I couldn't relate to the models and celebrities portrayed in the media. From the catwalk to shampoo adverts, the majority of the women represented were tall, blonde and fair. I looked nothing like them - my features, skin colour and hair were completely different. Then through friends I discovered Hindi film actresses! (The term "Bollywood" is technically incorrect but I like the alliteration!). I'm not a big fan of the modern actresses such as Aishwarya Rai, Priyanka Chopra, Biphasha Basu etc, because although they are stunning, I feel that these days they are mostly carbon copies of each other and overly sexualised. I felt more inspired by the actresses of the 60s and 70s who had more character and looked sassier.


Parveen Babi

Zeenat Aman

Sharmila Tagore

Image source: Google

I think these ladies are absolutely beautiful. I love the big bouffant hair styles and the thick winged eyeliner. I'm going to get my gel eyeliner out and start practising!

Love love love Sleek blushers!

My most recent makeup purchases have been two blushers from the Sleek makeup range.  I can honestly say that Sleek is my favourite drugstore brand - every product I have tried of theirs has been outstanding and these are no exception.

The packaging is great and doesn't look cheap at all. It even has a real mirror, not those cheap plastic ones with a reflective coating (shame on you Benefit!).

The two that I picked up are Coral (with the fingernail dent) and Flushed.

There seems to be little difference between the colours in my natural daylight swatches but the ones with flash are a better representative of their true colours. You can't see from the photos but they both contain very fine shimmer which only show up when reflected by light. Flushed (on the left in the swatches) looks like a very dark berry colour in the pan but comes out sheer on the skin and is a lovely colour. Coral is my absolute favourite and I have been wearing this everyday. I have never owned a blush in this colour as most drugstore corals are too light and do not show up on my skintone (e.g  Revlon Hushed Blush). However Sleek products are formulated to compliment all skin tones and this one is highly pigmented and  gorgeous.

There are five colours in the range and no doubt I will be buying the other three to complete my set. The blushers are priced at £3.26 from Superdrug and there is no better time to purchase as they have a 3 for 2 promotion across all makeup lines!

Review: Charles Worthington Refresh & Revive dry shampoo

I usually wear my hair straight and when I do, the roots get greasy very quickly. As I only wash my hair every other day, I rely on dry shampoo between washes and my usual Batiste dry shampoo just wasn't cutting it.  My hair is jet black, and it just looked as if I had powdered my scalp with talcum powder - it was very hard to brush out. I know Batiste have brought out a range of coloured dry shampoos but I can't find them anywhere so I picked this up instead.

Refresh & Revive dry shampoo is from Charles Worthington's new Front Row range and here is what the man himself has to say about the collection:
"Together with the art team, I have worked to create products not only suitable for use backstage, but perfect for translating catwalk looks into everyday life".
The range is fronted by the beautiful Leigh Lezark who has been named the campaign abassasdor, and is seen here modelling looks created with Front Row products.

Photos taken from  Make me Front Row
I must admit that the only reason I bought this was because I couldn't find anything else on the shelf in terms of dry shampoo. Plus I really like the packaging and the design. If you peel back the cover, there's some styling tips and a snazzy print.

Three products from the range feature limited edition prints designed by the fashion designer Erdem, who is responsible for these beauties below.

Photos taken from Style.com
The dry shampoo itself is really good as it is very very fine and is  easy to brush through, without leaving any white marks behind. It soaked up the grease in my hair easily and left it looking clean. It can also be used to create texture and give your hair some volume (e.g when back combing). Here is a photo of how fine it is compared to Batiste.

Both were sprayed from half an arms length and as you can see Batiste sprays thickly, whilst Refresh & Revive sprays like deodorant (I sprayed  a large amount but only a small section showed up on camera).
However as good as it is, I'm not sure I will be repurchasing this because I think it smells like cheap unbranded teenage deodorant. For such a great product I don't understand why they didn't make it smell nicer? I am quite sensitive to smells so maybe others won't mind so much, but i prefer Bastite's clean smelling scent over this one.
If you would like to buy this, it is available from Boots at £5.99 (or wait until it goes on special offer like I did!).

Sonia Rykiel for H&M lingerie

I didn't care for Jimmy Choo's range for H&M but I am definitely interested in the lingerie line that Sonia Rykiel has designed for H&M (not enough to queue outside Oxford St on a Saturday though).

I love the vintage inspired bras (especially the nude ones), the luxurious materials, the delicate detailing and how feminine they are. I'm not sure on the sizes available but I'm guessing  they won't have mine :(

Starting from £14.99, this line is more than affordable.

The collection launches worldwide, in 1,500 H&M stores on the 5th of December. It will also be available in major  Sonia Rykiel boutiques . Her second collection for H&M consisting of knitwear and accessories for women and girls, will debut in February 2010.

Source: My Fashion Life

Natalie Portman for V Magazine Dec 2009 shot by Mario Testino

Source: TFS

Absolutely gorgeous. Not crazy about the hair but love the eye makeup!

Shopping Vouchers/Codes

Just wanted to share some shopping vouchers and codes I've come across:

Selfridges: Use this voucher and get 20% off your Christmas shopping (10% off on Beauty and Fragrance). Valid from 26 - 29 November.

Gap: 30% off until the 29 November with this voucher.

ASOS: Use the code WELCOMENOV09 and get 20% off all full priced items. Valid until the 23 November.

Space NK: Use FF201 to get 20% off all items. Valid until the 21 November.

Latest MAC Haul

L-R: Mineralize blusher in Warm Soul, Mineralize eyeshadow in Techtonic, Sheertone shimmer blush in Dollymix and Eye kohl pencil in Smoulder.

The few bits and pieces that I've picked up over the past few weeks from online sales and instore.

The mineralize eyeshadow was a freebie with my Ben Nye palette and whilst it's not something I would  have bought myself, I think it's a nice colour. However I don't really know what to pair gold eyeshadow with other than black? Smoulder was a consolation purchase as Feline from the Style Black collection was sold out. It's very very dark, even more so than UD's Zero but it smudges like a mother on my waterline...!

Warm Soul is on the left and I absolutely love it! Apparently it is a mid tone beige with golden pearl but I think it's darker than beige, almost like a bronzer on me. I don't have anything like this as I'm so used to buying pink blushers but I've been rocking this one everyday. Dollymix, on the right, is a lovely bright pink with shimmer running through it.

I have become addicted to blushers, especially MAC ones and I've already started to eye the other mineralize ones.  Harry in particular loves Dollymix! hehe

EOTD: Smokey peacock green

In my case, EOTD stands for "Experiment of the day" as I feel I'm far too much of an amateur. I'm still getting to grips with blending and I'm not always sure if I've done well.

What I used:

- Mac mineralize eyeshadow in "Tectonic" (greeny gold colour) all over the lid.
- Ben Nye "Jade" on inner corner and "Cosmic Blue" on the outer V and crease.
- One of the black shadows in the crease and outer V from Sleek's Graphite palette.
- Elf blending brush.
- Mac kohl eyeliner in "Smoulder" on upper lash line and waterline and Ben Nye "Jade" on lower lash line.
- Benefit badgal lash mascara.
- No concealer hence all the redness

Loving the Ben Nye shadows - look how iridescent and lovely they are. I will definitely be buying refills when they're finished. They are available to buy in Covent Garden at both Charles Fox and Screen Face and of course many other places online.

Ben Nye Lumiere Grand Colour Palette

I managed to blag this for a mere tenner from a forum but I think the Makeup Gods thought this was too much of a bargain and decided to punish me for it. It arrived in the post in pieces, decorating the inside of the envelope like a rainbow. It had only been used once or twice previously but there were now sizeable chunks missing as the seller hadn't secured the shadows properly. However I wasn't too disheartened because there is still a lot of product left and a MAC mineralize shadow had been included to make up for the delay in postage.

The shadow on the bottom far right is actually Jade.

I placed these in the wrong order. The bottom row from L-R is: Chartreuse, Cosmic Violet and Amethyst.

Unfortunately this post is going to be short as I haven't really had time to experiment with this palette as much as I'd like to. All I can say is that I absolutely love it! The palette is very similar to the Kryolan Aquaolour one in terms of the layout but I know I will definitely use this much more.

The shadows are intense and highly pigmented. My favourites are Azalea and Cosmic Blue (the ones which were damaged the most - whyyyyy!). There are so many different looks that can be created with this, I just don't know where to start...