Mar 29, 2013

The HIP list : Summer coolers

Summer has arrived with all its might and so are we ready to tuck in those winter wardrobe and strut out the whites and cottons in this heat. I give you some essentials to head onto this season, simple and chic.

1. Breezy tees and tops are the staple if you are spending time in the city and no holidaying. Whites, pastels, sailor stripes, message and quirky prints and colorful embroidery or lacework will always be the summer rage.

1. Zara 2. Abercrombie & Fitch 3. Old Navy 4. Abercrombie & Fitch 5.

2. Throw on a Sleeveless denim jacket on any outfit to up the cool quotient and be the style icon around.

Aeropostale denim jacket

3. A Straw hat serves as an all time shade under the cruel sun and saviour of your lustrous hairlocks.

H&M straw hat with ribbon

4. Keep the accessories simple. A carry all, minimalistic but large shopper bag is summer bff to keep all your stuff whether in the city or on vacation. Metallic accents like studs are still big this season

H&M bag with silver studs

5. Wear a single piece of jewelry but make it attention grabbing. Look out for stones and semi-precious pieces in punchy colors.

6. Summer means spending lots of time outside, shopping and walking. ditch those high heels in daytime and opt for flat sandals.

Zara white sandals

7. Why should makeup take a backseat in heat and sweat. Do not forget your SPF and wear juicy, no-fuss lip colors. Take a cue from Anne Hathaway below on how to do bright pink lip. I am guessing the color being Chanel Rouge Allure Velvet L'Exuberante.

Mar 23, 2013

MAC Studio Moisture Cream review

MAC Studio Moisture Cream is a face moisturiser from the brand's skincare range  and a boon for women with dry skin. I have been using this cream for last 3 years and not a word of complaint. It has remained a loyal product during the dry, parched Saudi weather and the cool of Bangalore. Earlier I used several face moisturisers but nothing seemed to work on my dry skin, plus i had flaky patches on cheeks. When I got introduced to MAC and saw the brand's popularity, I got a sample for this cream. It worked and got me hooked on.

Price - INR 2000
Quantity - 50ml

Studio Moisture Cream is a soft, thick facial cream but goes on the skin with very light texture. Inside the packaging, the cream is super whipped. I got rid of my flaky cheek patches after regularly using this and no irritation / sensitivity issues. It might be called cream but it applies light with cooling effect, no oily residue but complete hydration. However my skin needs re-application after 4-5 hours, but it depends on each skin type. The fragrance is fresh, clean and floral. I use it daily all year round (in winters, mixed with a oily moisturiser) and plus point being day + night cream. Studio Moisture Cream does not have SPF but it is not my requirement, I use it as a staple face moisturiser over which I apply my sunscreen / foundation. If some other cream or weather irritates my facial skin, this creams calms and treats it.

Few ingredients different from other face creams are kukui seed oil, barley extract, passionfruit extract, spinach leaf extract, green tea extract, algae extract and squalene. The tub packaging is travel friendly and no wastage of such expensive product. Studio Moisture Cream is a cult product with great fan following among the makeup artists and a must facial cream for makeup done at fashion shows.

Recommendation - It works great as makeup base and daily usage improves the facial skin.

Mar 21, 2013

Chanel Rouge Allure Emotive #68 review

With the launch of Bobbi Brown's Spring 2013 Lilac Rose collection, I am sharing a review inspired by the purple hues of the season.

Chanel #68 Emotive is a berry toned lipstick from their Rouge Allure Luminous Satin Lip Colour range. The last season, I was very much attracted to all the berry, wine and oxblood colors of fashion and beauty launches. Plus I always wished to buy a Chanel lipstick. So after trying few deep reds I decided upon Chanel Emotive.

Price - INR 2,000
Quantity - 3.5 gm

(in natural light)

(in artificial light)

The color is a deep raspberry with touch of burgundy. On a light application, it appears deep pink, but it needs a heavy hand to come as beautiful berry tone. Instead of a proper wine shade I chose this, due to the ease of wearing it any time of the day and season. Emotive is a very transitional color, appearing as deep fuchsia in sunny days and burgundy toned in evenings. The color is suitable for all skin tones.

In above photo, the lip color worn by  Blair Waldorf (Gossip Girl season 2 episode 22) is very similar to Emotive. The color goes nicely with her fuchsia outfit with cherry prints and deep red on her nails.

Rouge Allure Luminous Satin range is moisturizing, light on lips and wear time is 4-5 hours.However, it is very expensive compared to the fact that other high end brands like Shiseido gives 4gm in Perfect Rouge and YSL Rouge Pur Couture is 3.8 gm, plus the wear time is longer. Chanel packaging is really attractive with black and gold casing and a impressive inside push-click technology. The colors appear a little sheer and less glossy.

Recommendation - Pair this shade with clear gloss for easy but fresh daytime look and for evening apply it over a plum/wine lip pencil like MAC Beet.

Mar 16, 2013

The Body Shop Jolly Orange Body Butter review

I came to know about body butters through The Body Shop and was hooked on to this product for a while. Well not anymore. Jolly Orange body butter is described as aromatic moisturiser with orange seed oil.

Price - SAR 69
Quantity - 200 ml

Till the time my love for body butters lasted I bought two, Moringa and then Jolly Orange. So here is review for one of them. The texture is very smooth and really feels like thick butter, but one that is heavily scented. It applies well on the skin but settles on the top layer. My skin feels moisturised for whole day but if I use water or sweat then it comes off. One does not need to reapply the cream though. The cream is apt for dry, parched skin all year long. The scent is heavy and citrus but not like oranges. On application, for few hours the scent is too heavy and does not make me feel jolly. The heavy scent and wearing off in water/sweat part took away my love from Body Shop body butters. The packaging is quite jolly to keep on your shelf. The orange packaging perks up the mood.

Recommendation - I would only suggest to people who really love heavy scents otherwise this product did not click with me.

Mar 15, 2013

Victoria's Secret Good Day Sunshine Body Cream review

Victoria's Secret Good Day Sunshine Body Cream is a floral scented nourishing body cream from the "secret moments" range, themed on bright peach and blue freesia. This is my first Victoria's Secret product and I ordered online. I was really nervous how would it turn out but it did not give me any chance to regret.

Price - $12 (got it for INR 550)
Quantity - 200 ml

Few lines on the packaging: Happiness is in the little things: Blue skies. Pink shoes. A good hair day. Add bright  Peach and Blue Freesia, and it's GOOD DAY SUNSHINE! (**these lines pretty much sum up the dream of every girl, don't they**)

Relive the moment with this fragrant body cream, a happy path to soft, touchable skin. Infused with our signature trio of skin-nourishing botanicals: antioxidant White Tea and moisture-rich Rice and White Lily Milks for healthy-looking skin.

This body cream is thick and smooth with a long wearing fragrance. It also contains avocado oil, sweet almond oil, lemon and rosemary extracts and sunflower seed oil, restoring skin moisture and smoothness. I find the cream very soft and well absorbing on the skin. The texture is not greasy as many creams/ lotions wash away in water. The thickness of the cream is a boon for dry, dehydrated skin and one can use it till light winters. The scent is very floral, summer like and lasts for long, making it ideal for hot months. I use the cream sparingly as availability is an issue.

The packaging is sweet, beautiful and feminine with few expressive lines about the product. I actually bought it due to the print packaging and brand name. The cream comes out easily from the tube, as much required. I am really happy with this purchase.

Recommendation - It would be a good idea to apply Sunshine Body Cream lightly after a night shower, its beautiful scent really pleases at that time.

Mar 8, 2013

Movie Review: Chokher Bali, by Rituparno Ghosh

Chokher Bali is adapted from Rabindranath Tagore’s novel “Binodini”, the central character being a beautiful and young widow Binodini, played by Aishwarya Rai in the movie.

Chokher Bali is a nickname given by two friends to each other in addressing playfully. Binodini is a young widow who enters the household of Mahendra and Ashalata, soon garnering the attention of everybody in the family by her beauty and boldness. She becomes friends with Ashalata, the young and childish bride of the family, but soon the friendship goes through turmoil as Binodini and Mahendra (Ashalata’s husband) start an affair. This relation curses the household and both the women leave the house and go different ways. The movie brings out the emotions and vulnerable nature of young women who yearn for love and admiration, and even if a widow chained by rules, she longs to look beautiful, do shringaar and choose her soulmate.  Aishwarya’s acting is soft, nascent but strong. Raima Sen is as innocent as could be. Prosenjit disappoints and leaves the character undone.

Watch out for the innocent scenes of friendship between Binodini and Ashalata. Also when Binodini shows her knowledge and protests against the old traditions and beliefs which leave women helpless. The exquisite jewellery shown in the movie is sure to attract as is Aishwarya’s beauty. This movie with strong female portrayals is apt to be watched on this Woman's Day. Happy Woman's Day.