Monday, 20 December 2010

A happy Christmas to all our lovely blog-readers

Beauty Bible is, like most people, taking a wee break till after Christmas (New Year's Eve, to be precise), when we'll be back with all that's new, noteworthy and buzzy in the world of hair, make-up, skincare and general gorgeousness.  Hope your travel plans go smoothly - and that you have a glorious time.

PS  We will be thinking on Christmas Day of the 250 young women at Centrepoint, waking up to the beauty bags that we packed last week.  A wonderful, warming thought.

Have a dekko at Occo in the City

Occo's one of our favourite new brands of 2010:  inspired by Dalmatia, on the Adriatic coast, and scented to conjure up the region - salt breezes, lush grapes and figs, aromatic wild flowers, etc.  The range is vast, but we've yet to find a product we didn't warm to.  (Special favourite:  Motovun No. 3 Deep Forest, all cypress, cedarwood and a hefty grind of black pepper.  Not a little Christmas-tree-esque, as it happens.)  Most products are around 98% natural - and for now, you can find the entire Occo line showcased in the City, at the store above - it's at 18 Royal Exchange, EC3V 3LL.  A little corner of London that is forever Dalmatia.  (Or rather, a little corner of London that is Dalmatia until the end of December, when this pop-up closes its doors.)

Thursday, 16 December 2010

Such a generous industry...

Our hands are wrecked.  Our manicures are history.  We're knackered as anything.  But having rolled up our sleeves and spent eight solid hours unpacking boxes and repacking (to the brim) some specially printed bags, Beauty Bible is delighted to say that on Christmas morning - thanks to the generosity of the beauty industry - 250 young homeless women at Centrepoint will wake up to a fabulous present that looks something like this.  For the past seven years, Jo - along with beauty industry trainer and lifecoach Sharron Lowe, and a fantastic committee that includes Kirsty Lewis (Brand PR), Michelle Boon (Beautyseen PR), Sarah Duguid (Sisley), a representative of Modus Dowal Walker (thank you guys, for the loan of the van driver!) - plus our own Sarah - has been pulling together these Christmas goodie bags, which for many Centrepoint residents will be the only Christmas gift they get.
      So we just wanted to use this blog to say thank you to a roll-call of brands and donors, including Richard Ward, John Frieda, ESPA, Jean-Paul Gaultier (courtesy of Kenneth Green Associates), Revlon, Estée Lauder, Rituals, L'Oréal Elvive, Mavala, Neal's Yard Remedies, Maybelline, Crabtree & Evelyn, Clinique, YSL, Giorgio Armani, Yes to Carrots, Dr. Organic, Biolage, Weleda - and oh, the list goes on so please forgive us if we've forgotten anyone.  Thanks too, to our own Beauty Bible Executive Assistant Amy Eason and all-round good egg Dave Edmunds, plus Centrepoint's John Raynham.  Couldn't have done it without you (and the Christmas carol CD.  Oh, and the biscuits...)
      Between you, you've made 250 women's Christmas Days.  Thanks from them.  And thanks from us:  it makes us proud to work in this industry.  Meanwhile, if you'd like to contribute to this fantastically worthwhile cause, simply click the link below.

Wednesday, 15 December 2010

A free Green Beauty Bible...!

... when you spend £15 on Une make-up at!  We've sent out a bulletin about this fantastic offer to our subscribers, but basically it goes like this:  all you have to do to secure a copy of our bestselling book The Green Beauty Bible  is to spend £15 on-line, as above - stocking up on this new and noteworthy brand of natural-as-possible make-up (from the same 'stable' as Bourjois).  Fab shades, smooth-as-silk textures, high-performance - and really reasonable, too:  £15 goes quite a long way at Une.  But no, the becoming flush that you would be able to see on our cheeks right now (if you had a webcam) isn't a sweep of Une Breezy Cheeks blusher.  It's a little tinge of pride that they chose us for this promo, actually.

Monday, 13 December 2010

Something fishy at Margaret Dabbs

Margaret Dabbs is the go-to medi-pedicurist for us (and all our beauty editor friends).  Cleverly, she's also 'cloned' herself so that her white-coated podiatrist assistants are equally good at blitzing every last molecule of hard skin, to leave feet baby-soft and beyond pampered (so that we can comfortably march from A to B...)  Now Margaret has a whole tankful of new hard-skin-destroyers:  at the swanky new Margaret Dabbs Sole Spa at Liberty (which we have to admit is slightly more convenient for us than the other salon at 7 Cavendish Street), you can now enjoy a Garra Rufa fish pedicure in which the little fishies nibble your tootsies to smoothness.  (Tickly but worth it.)  The 'Aqua Therapy' pedicure features on a lengthy menu of treats that ranges from the famous Medical Pedicure £75) through to a Shape & Polish (just £25).  Click here to read it - and trust us:  whichever you go for, your feet definitely won't fail you now...

PS  Remember to book separately for varnishing - it's not necessarily included, depending on which pedi you book.

Margaret Dabbs Sole Spa at Liberty, Great Marlborough Street, London W1B 5AH
020-7494 4492

Friday, 10 December 2010

A tutu lovely spa offer

Blytheswood Square is a spiffy but not-at-all-over-priced new boutique hotel in Glasgow with a spa that we're hearing good things about from our beauty spies..  And as major ballet-lovers, we're trying to figure out how we can head north to enjoy one of their Cinderella Day Spa packages:  'the ultimate whirlwind transformation (pumpkin not included!)', as they put it.  Blytheswood Spa has put together the packages in tandem with the Scottish Ballet:  a Cinderella Deluxe Spa package (price £255) which includes a tailored Anne Sémonin Phyto-Aromatic facial, a seaweed foot experience (to get your feet glass-slipper-worthy), and a luxurious hand pampering session.  (Never know when a prince will swoop to kiss those, after all.)  Or, for Cinderellas who've got a fair bit of cleaning/sweeping/Christmas shopping to fit in before they can party, check out the Speedy Cinderella Package, £25:  a shape and polish and well-deserved glass of fizz.  Plus - oh, lovely! - they currently have tickets for the Scottish Ballet's performance of Cinderella to snap up, price from £10 (with limited availability, from 14th-31st December at Theatre Royal Glasgow).  Cinders, you shall go to the ball - and the ballet...!

Blytheswood Square, 11 Blytheswood Square, Glasgow, G2 4AD/0141-248 8888

Wednesday, 8 December 2010

Be Breizh! (That's not a spelling error...)

Yes, you read it right.  And you say it:  'Breeshe.'  And it's the Breton word for Brittany, which - as spa-goers know - is a prime destination for thallassotherapy, which involves all manner of seawater and marine treatments.  So we haven't just put this outdoorsy shot of a girl in her Breton t-shirt to torture you:  this is what you could now be looking forward to - with a lot less hassle than before - on a Brittany spa trip.  One of the fiendish things about booking a French spa visit has been - well, the Frenchness of the whole thing.  So (not before time) there's a brand new English website which offers an A-Z guide to top-to-toe pampering in  breezy, breizh-y Brittany.  On this well-designed, easy-to-navigate site, there's a full run-down of the treatments, the spas, the locations (find that bit under WHERE TO GO - and look for ALL RELAXATION PLACES), and which are best for what (cellulite/legs/post-natal/stress/joints etc.)  We defy you not to start looking longingly at next summer's diary...

Tuesday, 7 December 2010

Enter Cleopatra's Boudoir

We've always had a 'thing' for vintage perfumes and perfume bottles (though not quite in the league of our friend Roja Dove and his world-class flacon collection).  So on our peregrinations through cyberspace we were pleased to stumble across a US website - Cleopatra's Boudoir - which focusses on old bottles, the websites where you can find them, discontinued scents (how we long to have smelled Bonne Belle's Gadabouts, Lundborg's Stolen Secret or Atkinson's A Nosegay, for instance...) - and also features a blog about the author's fragrant vintage 'finds'.  (Recent postings include Cobra by Weil, Fabergé's Straw Hat, or - oh, an old chypre favourite of Jo's, this - Sikkim, which was briefly revived by Lancôme about five years ago, but then disappeared once again into the ether.)  We say:  this Temple to Ancient Perfumes is a must-have addition to the blog-roll for any fragrance fiend.  

Monday, 6 December 2010

The most expensive bathtub ever...?

Just had to share this with you.  (We were alerted to it on the Beauty Editor Post blog - a US blog that mostly looks at salon treatments and spas - by Victoria Health's Gill Sinclair, who is probably redesigning her bathroom to accommodate it as we speak...)  The 'shoe' bath is created from a mosaic tiny glass tiles, less than a tenth-of-an-inch each in size, by a firm called Massimilliano Della Monaca. Gimmicky?  Sure.  Over-the-top?  Absolutely.  But it also looks pretty comfortable - and if any footballer's wives are out there (oh, and Gill), it'll set you back somewhere between $17,000 to $27,000, depending on the materials chosen.  View, alas, not included.

Friday, 3 December 2010

We love... Style Notes by Maggie Alderson

Let's declare an interest here.  Novelist Maggie Alderson is Jo's best friend.  But cross-your-heart-and-hope-to-die, we'd follow her new Style Notes blog even if we didn't know her from a bar of Floris Rose Geranium Soap.  Style Notes is a column that's appeared in The Sydney Morning Herald for years, and is now exclusively available to on-line readers.  (She has some following, and Herald readers are deserting in their droves now they can no longer find her in the Good Weekend mag.  Fact.)  It's about real clothes for real people, mostly - but with the cred of someone who used to edit Elle and The Evening Standard's ES and who for years trailed between Paris, Milan, London and New York for the seasonal collections.  Always witty, sometimes poignant, and eternally readable.  What's not to love?  (Even if she's not your best friend.)

Thursday, 2 December 2010

Hell on heels...?

We love a high heel as much as the next woman.  But we have to admit that when we saw these shoes by sportswear sandal brand Teva (for L.A. fashion house Grey Ant), we thought they were a practical joke. Turns out not.  Now, we are not about to go climbing Kilimanjaro in heels.  But despite the rugged outdoorsy styling seen here, we have a hunch that the Teva heels - which are currently only available in the US (doh!) - would probably be seriously comfortable when spending hours on your feet clutching a cocktail glass at a Christmas party.  Or pounding the pavements of the concrete jungle looking for a black cab, afterwards.

Just one style tip, from Beauty Bible:  maybe kill the woolly socks, OK? (Although then again, on second thoughts, in this weather, maybe not...)

Wednesday, 1 December 2010

Big ideas for the smallest room

One of the things we love blogs for is interiors inspiration.  Yes, we read beauty blogs and fragrance blogs - but that's definitely mixing business with pleasure! So the interiors and foodie blogs are the ones which get Beauty Bible excited.  A particular favourite is The Decorista's blog:  very visual, very colourful, filled with gorgeous interiors that tend to mix vintage with modern, in a so-liveable-with and basically pretty achievable way, if you've got a bit of an eye for flea markets and fabrics.  (OK.  The Decorista is American.  But there are no borders in cyberspace, in case you hadn't noticed.)  We're sharing the photo above with you, though, to alert you to a rather lovely and sort of beauty-esque posting about - yes, loos, and how to make them prettier.  We say: out with the old school photos, the Toilet Duck and the Giles annuals, ladies!  And in with some of The Decorista's ideas, for lovelier lavatories.  Just click here to read them...

Monday, 29 November 2010

Sniff out this new fragrance boutique

Ormonde Jayne is the nom de parfum of Linda Pilkington.  Who's she...?  Well, you need to know that Linda is a mega-talented British 'nose' whose scents are favourites of the serious fragranceophiles who make pilgrimages to her Bond Street boutique-ette (hidden away in The Royal Arcade, a violet cream's throw away from Charbonnel & Walker), and the spiffy counter in the Black Hall at Harrods.  (Where - no surprises here! - her 24-carat-gold-infused blingtastic body cream is a bestseller.)  But we just visited Linda's new mirror-and-black-glass jewel of a boutique - off Sloane Square.  (Turn right into the pedestrian zone, just before The White Company - relevant info because it's seriously fiendish to find).  And we think there couldn't be a lovelier place to sniff and spray your way through the Ormonde Jayne collection, to discover your favourite.  In fact, we suggest you sign up for a 'fragrance consultation', to help you take a short-cut to the one you love the most - from deliciously, resinous Tolu to dark, spicy Orris Noir, via divinely rosy Ta'if.  There are men's scents, bath oils and some seriously luxurious candles, too, which should put a few more ticks against that scary Christmas list.  (Er, if you can bear to give them away, that is...)

Ormonde Jayne, 192 Pavilion Road, Sloane Square, London SW3 2BF/020-7730 1381

Friday, 26 November 2010

Sparkle alert!

We're not generally big on bling, at Beauty Bible.  More dewy, muted girls.  But we do know that it's the party season, and we do also know that just about anyone under twenty-five (including goddaughters/
granddaughters) is obsessed with sheeny, gleamy things like these ultra-metallic shadows and polishes.  So, we bring you this stunning visual for Blingtones, from MyFace Cosmetics - actually rather a grown-up brand, with the range cleverly complexion-coded to make goof-proof shade selection easy as A, B, C (whether you're Fair/Medium/Med-Dark-complexioned).  Fact is, we're rather taken with the make-up artist who created this look - a charming and talented chap called Kabuki (born in the north of England, now based in Manhattan).  Which puts us right up there with Madonna and Kylie, who barely move before Kabuki's made them up.  With Kabuki's input, we think MyFace is about to get even more interesting.  Meanwhile, we think you should know that there's a really good way to discover this range for yourself - because the brand has now installed in-store make-up artist 'Saturday girls' at the following Boots stores (sorry, it's a long list - but it is alphabetical).  So why not grab yourself a bit of Bling this weekend...?

Birmingham Fort Dunlop
Brent Cross
Dartford Bluewater Park
Dudley Merry Hill Centre
Gateshead Metro Centre
Glasgow Braehead
Glasgow Fort
Glasgow Silverburn (oh, they must love their bling in Glasgow!)
Leicester (city centre)
Leicester Fosse Park
London Kensington
London Liverpool Street Station
London Piccadilly
Manchester Market Street
Manchester Trafford Centre
Newcastle upon Tyne
Sedley Place
Sheffield Meadowhall

Thursday, 25 November 2010

It's nail files at dawn, girls...

... Because Chanel just unveiled the latest must-have nail colour - baby blue Riva - which goes on sale today (25th).  Following hot on the heels of Rouge Noir (a true classic), Jade (the only nail polish we've ever been stopped by admiring strangers while wearing) and putty-ish Particulière, this is actually very pretty.  With grey skies and winds blasting straight in from Siberia, it's a welcome reminder that one day it will be warm enough to take off our thermals and bask in the sunshine again.  Find it at Chanel Boutiques and Selfridges.  And better be quick.

Wednesday, 24 November 2010

A day for sitting down with a nice cuppa

We don't need much of an excuse to put the kettle on, frankly.  Beauty Bible is pretty much fuelled by tea.  But as temperatures plummet, we have a new, warming-in-every-way favourite that we just have to share with you - from the Rare Tea Co., founded by 'Tea Lady' Henrietta Lovell.  (Who we met last week at a very exclusive tea party for some hush-hush upcoming Jo Malone fragrances).   The packaging's great.  The teas are divine, the very best quality and bought at fair prices from tea-farmers - everything from antioxidant-packed Silver Tip White Tea through to this one:  a serious black tea, of the kind that helped Britain win two World Wars, basically.  As Henrietta puts it, Royal Air Force Tea is 'Calming in times of national peril, and fortifying when courage is required.'  (Not bad, either, when you're hurtling towards a book deadline.)   RAF Tea can be found at Sainsbury's right now (you'll have to look on the top shelf where it's inexplicably been stacked), as well as The Rare Tea Co.'s own website, and makes a wonderful gift for anyone who lived through World War II - or who simply loves a good cuppa.  Which definitely includes us.  (The cuppa bit, not the Battle of Britain/Blitz bit.)

PS  10% of the sale of each tin - £5 for 50 g on Henrietta's website (slightly less at Sainsbury's as is their wont) - is divvied up between the RAF Association Wings Appeal and the RAF Museum.

Tuesday, 23 November 2010

Liz Earle heads north

On Thursday (25th November), the ladies of Leeds will be able to find out what this Top Secret store really looks like - because Liz Earle is opening her very first store in the north.  Based in the Victoria Quarter, the new shop it recreates the atmosphere of our favourite Liz Earle shop - on the Isle of Wight - with pebbles, stone flooring, aged cedar walls and (as ever) botanicals a-go-go.  There are opportunities through the day to meet Liz, enjoy one-to-one skincare consultations, relax with a pampering hand and arm massage (first come, first served of course) - and find out about how this skincare empire sources the plant ingredients that are so key to the formulations.  Liz will be there at 9.30 to cut the ribbon, from 3 - 4 p.m. and again from 6 - 6.45 p.m.

If you're planning a day off for Christmas shopping, you might want to pick Thursday.  After all, we wouldn't want anyone throwing a sickie just so they could be first through the door of Liz's Leeds store.  Would we...?

Monday, 22 November 2010

Davinia's divine make-up school

You may not know the name Davinia Fermi (lovely and unusual as it is) - but we think you should.  For a time, Davinia was based near Jo in Hastings, where she not only did our make-up FAH-BU-LOUSLY for shoots (and we are very, very picky - been known to scrub it off again, in fact).  Davinia also taught make-up skills to small groups there at her Make-up Masterclasses - but she's now moved on to much grander things, and we're delighted to tell you about her new Make-up Academy for professionals, based in a sensational Georgian house - Stanmer House - near Brighton.  She's a super-experienced make-up pro who's worked on films, magazine shoots (think:  Tatler, Vogue, Harpers Bazaar etc.), music tours and more - and she's now represented by uberagent Joy Goodman, which tells you everything.  These courses really are for professionals and those who are looking to make-up as a career - for instance, Fashion, Media and TV Make-up and Hair (a 5-week course), or Evening High Fashion Make-up - for full info, we suggest you visit Davinia's website, below.  (That's her in the middle, above, by the way.)

The only annoying thing?  Now Davinia's so successful, we're not sure she'll have time to do our faces, any more...!

PS  If you'd be interested in a Beauty Bible Make-up Masterclass with Davinia, click here and send us an e-mail.  If enough of you think this is a good idea, we'll look at setting one up with her.

Monday, 15 November 2010

Feast your beady eyes on this

At Beauty Bible we're a bit of a family.  We're enormously proud of what our Beauty Bible 'alumni' have gone on to achieve, after they've left us:  lovely Liz Hancock (now Beauty Editor of Above, the eco-style magazine), Cluny Brown (graphic designer) and Rhian Hepple, who for years toiled away sending out parcels to testers, and helping us collate results for our books - and is now a jeweller, something she can juggle at home with bringing up Kai and Dylan.  So:  with Christmas approaching, we need to tell you about Rhian's Rhi-Vive beaded creations.  Rhian takes old and vintage beads to create new necklaces, bracelets, rings, even watchstraps.  Her website gives an example of them (not every photo does the jewels justice, trust us!), but Rhian can also create 'custom' pieces, commissioned in specific shades or finishes.  (She can also rework items to order - for instance if you have an allergy to a specific metal in a clasp).

All pretty and twinkly and sparkly and not expensive at all.  And almost as lovely as Rhian...   

Friday, 12 November 2010

A golden (flower) moment

We are always keen that beauty companies give back, while they're making us more lovely.  So we're very happy about Chanel's initiative, working with their ethnobotanist Xavier Ormancey, to catalogue all the native plants in a far-flung region of Ladakh (in Northern India).  It's part of Chanel's involvement in an active programme to ensure that the traditional 'Amchi' medicines (which this community has relied on for centuries) is maintained for future generations.  Why Ladakh?  Well, it just so happens the region is also a source for a VIP 'golden flower' - a key ingredient in their new exquisitely-scented Sublimage Serum, which makes their support of the Ladakh Society for Traditional Medicine a rather good 'fit'.  Chanel asked Jo - who's got a bit of an interest in Corporate Social Responsibility (having launched the UK's first Fairtrade-marked chocolate, Green & Black's), if she'd comment on their initiative for a wee movie they've made about Ladakh, the golden flower, and Sublimage Serum.

And we thought you might like to see the vodcast here.  (You even get a glimpse of Jo's greenhouse!)

Thursday, 11 November 2010

Two minutes of instant peace - not just today, but anytime

We think this is a wonderful way to access a bit of peace in your life - anytime, not just on Armistice Day (traditionally the moment for a 2-minute silence, at 11 a.m. today on the 11/11).  It's an MP3 track of - well, silence.  Anytime you're feeling overwrought or over-stressed, you can click on this and it's like an instant meditation:  two minutes of silence, not only to remember the fallen (as you might today), but to count your blessings and simply step off the carousel of life to tune into 120 seconds of tranquility. There's also a moving video to accompany it, in which famous faces - think:  Bryan Ferry, Andy Murray, David Cameron - are interspersed with those who've been helped by the Royal British Legion, including a proud Chelsea Pensioner.  (It was shot by fashion photographer Matthew Donaldson - model Lily Donaldson's dad, who happens to be an old beau of Jo's...!)  For a YouTube preview, click here.  If enough people download this it could even get into the charts for Remembrance Sunday.  Take that, Take That.

Find the Royal British Legion 2 Minute silence track in iTunes, with the donation going to The Royal British Legion, or click here to buy it from the Legion's own site.

PS  Do observe the #notweet11AM with Twitter, which asks for two minutes of non-tweeting at 11 a.m.  We promise to.

Tuesday, 9 November 2010

Dejunk your make-up...

Beauty Bible loves Trish McEvoy.  Love her, love her make-up, love the really genius tips she's shared with us for our upcoming book The Anti-Ageing Beauty Bible - and love her super-organised kits (the Filofaxes of beauty), too.  Yup, it's a love thing.  And right now there is a better-than-ever reason to sit down for a one-on-one session with a Trish McEvoy make-up artist (at Selfridges or Harvey Nichols Knightsbridge).  As well as invaluable how-to advice, tips to enhance your natural beauty and the low-down on how to free yourself from make-up clutter once and for all, for a limited time you can take home a free deluxe-size Beauty Booster lipgloss, when you have a consultation with one of the Trish McEvoy consultants.  (Trish has rather cleverly cloned herself many times over, and they're all true pros.)  So:  say farewell to unsharpened pencils, cracked powders, grubby lipstick stubs - an say hello to a streamlined, flawless, totally organised new you.

Wednesday, 3 November 2010

Concerned about chemicals?

You are what you eat.  So:  do you really want to be made of monoammonium L-glutamate, or oxidised polyethylene...?  And of course, to a certain extent (even if the specifics are up for debate) you are what you put on your body, too.  So iPhone-lovers who are concerned ingredients-watchers will want to download this so-useful App from iTunes - based on the bestselling book The Chemical Maze - which looks at what preservatives and additives are in your food - and how they affect you.  Even more relevant to all you beauty-hounds is that it also does the same for the ingredients in cosmetics you're wearing or shopping for, too.  Now, we love Apps because you have all the info right at your fingertips when you need it most - in the supermarket or the beauty hall.  And we really love this App (recommended to us by Inika's Miranda Bond) because it's is so quick and easy to use:  simply enter the E number or ingredient name to get the instant feedback - good, bad or ugly...

Tuesday, 2 November 2010

Lyn Harris goes up the wall

Lyn Harris is a British perfumer known for her glorious creations.  But having made your interior - and yourself - smell gorgeous, you can now decorate your home with wallpapers inspired by the botanical prints that are a feature of Miller Harris's spot-it-at-100-paces distinctive packaging, which have been created in tandem with Karen Beauchamp.  Of course, at £75 a roll, you may want to reserve these for adornment of your 'smallest room' (be sure to accessorise with Miller Harris soaps and body lotions) - or create a single feature wall, somewhere in your home.  But we can thoroughly recommend enjoying the full impact of the papers -over a delicious tea (we're loving sweet-scented Thé Violette, accompanied by a rose cupcake) - in the Miller Harris Mayfair Tea Room and lifestyle store.

Scrumptious, in every way.

Miller Harris, 21 Bruton Street, London W1J 6QD/020-629 7750

PS  You still have until 12th November to enter the competition on our Beauty Bible website to win the Miller Harris candles that Samantha Cameron picked out as a hostess gift for Michelle Obama.

Monday, 1 November 2010

Remember it's World Vegan Day

Do we ever really need an excuse to feature a cute white rabbit on this site...?  But today (1st November) does happen to be World Vegan Day - the first day of World Vegan Month - which certainly justifies a mention (and aaaah-worthy photo).  We doubt there's a Beauty Bible follower out there who doesn't have strong feelings against animal testing, but vegan cosmetics take that to the next level, avoiding totally the use of animal-derived ingredients in products (even beeswax or honey).  Our tip for tracking these down is to look for the Vegan Society logo, or use the Animal Free Shopper Search on their website (you key in a product category and it comes up with a list of approved brands that fit the bill).  Meanwhile, you might also like to know that 75% of Lush's range is vegan, as are many of Green People's products - and Lavera's too.  A brand that's 100% vegan is the new high-performing haircare brand Pureology, which is available from an increasing number of salons.

And no, we're certainly not ashamed to be bunny-lovers.

Friday, 29 October 2010

It's vintage, darlings!

We do love a little bit of vintage.  (Although possibly not as much as our Beauty Bible Executive Assistant Amy, who sashays into work each day in the most stunning twinsets, pencil skirts and flouncy 50s frocks, accessorised by very grown-up pre-loved handbags).  If you love vintage, too, you'll want to know about the 'Live A Little Vintage' teas coming up at Dukes Hotel:  indulgent, yes, extravagant, definitely - but you'll be much more of a vintage expert when you leave.  (And with the delicious champagne tea with all the trimmings that's laid on, your zip may be a little tighter, too.)  At the vintage fashion masterclass hosted by Ooh la La! Vintage's fashion expert, Tara Munro, and vintage tailor Alice Prier, you'll learn the secrets of vintage glamour, listen to a talk on fashion through the eras - and there'll be a bespoke try-on session in the private boutique, to finish.  The timing for tea is 2-6 p.m. next Saturday 6th November 2010, and the price is £95 per person.  
Taking it to the next level, there's a 'Live A Lot of Vintage' package at the hotel, priced £265 per person, to include accommodation in a Duchess room (with all girly touches:  women's glossies, dressing table accessories, fresh flowers and chocolate brownies on arrival).  You'll also enjoy a Grey Goose Disco Inferno Cocktail in the velvety surroundings of the famous Dukes Bar, and take home a keepsake 'secret' diary address book of London's vintage shopping gems.  Dates for this are 6th November and also Saturday 19th February 2010 (when the next Vintage tea is staged, too).

Just remember to dress to thrill.

Thursday, 28 October 2010

The best advent calendar EVER...

Forget chocolate advent calendars.  Or those felt, home-made ones Martha Stewart's so keen on.  How we want to count down to Christmas is with this fabulous 24 Days of Luxury advent calendar - available exclusively from Selfridges, price £60 - which features a marvellous miniature make-up, skincare or fragrance item for every December day, from a range of L'Oréal luxury brands including Lancôme, Victor & Rolf, Kiehl's, Armani and more.  (The 'baby' Juicy Tube is too, too sweet for words.)  We know it's early (we haven't even heard the first playing of Do They Know It's Christmas? on the radio yet).  But indulge us, because we have a hunch this will sell out PDQ.  

So, all together now:  Dear Santa...

Monday, 25 October 2010

A beautiful show...

The stunning B&W photo above - of a Royal Ballet ballerina preparing for pirouetting across the Royal Opera House stage - is by Mary McCartney from her new exhibition From Where I Stand at the Michael Hoppen Gallery in Chelsea.  Whether you love horses, still life photos, or a spot of celeb-watching (there are stunning shots of Kate Moss, Tracey Emin, Peter Blake and - of course - Mary's Dad Paul and sister Stella), there's something in this show to delight the eye.  Being long-time ballet-lovers at Beauty Bible, we especially enjoyed the backstage photos taken by Mary of the Royal Ballet:  a real insight into all the hard work and artifice it's so hard to imagine when you see a featherlight prima ballerina leaping like Tinkerbell into air...

Michael Hoppen Gallery, 3 Jubilee Place, London SW3 3TD/020-7352 3649
From Where I Stand is also available as a book, price £19.99 (find it here at
NB  There's also a Mary McCartney show at the National Portrait Gallery Bookshop Gallery, until 13th February 2011.

Friday, 22 October 2010

Lashings of advice from Sharon Dowsett

We may all have just retrieved our winter coats from the wardrobe but here in beautyworld there are green shoots already:  we're previewing spring/summer 2011 colours!  Yesterday Beauty Bible nipped along to Maybelline (one of 2010's 'Coolbrand' winners), where supertalented Sharon Dowsett was demo-ing their very new pretty shades.  (We're especially loving ultra-wearable Pink Brown, a sensational neutral introduction in the Maybelline New York Color Sensational Lipstick collection, and the Eyestudio Mono in Silken Taupe.  Also note The Eraser - a roll-on sponge foundation - because you're going to see more sponge-applicator foundations appearing in the coming months.)
     We thought we'd ask Sharon which of Maybelline's products was her all-time fave rave, and got the answer:  'Great Lash!  I used to bring it back from the States before it was available in the UK;  it never crumbles or smudges and leaves lashes looking beautifully conditioned as well as volumised.'  When it comes to shade choice, Sharon says:  'Brown is the flat shoes of mascara, black is the high heels.  Blondes in particular tend to think they should wear brown, but black looks better every time.' (Though Sharon's not averse to a touch of navy or even plum, on occasion.)  Although she's created covers for just about every magazine you can name and has a long-standing relationship with Chanel make-up, too (where she's taught at their Academy), Sharon doesn't have a website (she's working on it).  For a swoon - and inspiration - you can check out her portfolio at agency CLM, here.

But first, do ditch that brown mascara.  NOW...!

Thursday, 21 October 2010


Nibble.  Dribble.  Slurp.   Mmmmm.  Those are the sound effects as the Beauty Bible belles work our way through the new Green & Black's Ultimate Chocolate Recipes cookbook (published by Kyle Cathie, price £16.99).  Some of you may know:  Jo (with her husband Craig) founded Green & Black's, back in 1991. For this beautifully-photographed book, Jo tapped friends and Green & Black's fans - from Sharon Osbourne to Delia Smith via Lulu and Mary McCartney (whose chocolate rice pud has to be tasted to be believed) - for scrumptious contributions.  And absolutely nobody said no - except Twiggy, who said:  'I'm not a great dessert cook, and the only thing I can think of to do with the wonderful Green & Black's is to eat it!'

You can find it on Amazon here.

PS  If you love chocolate (duh!), you'll also want to know that Green & Black's is currently talent-scouting for a Taste Assistant, who'll work with Head of Taste Micah Carr-Hill.  It's a tough job, but someone has to come up with new flavours, travel the world sourcing ingredients, test the recipes etc.  (Oh, and be paid £35,000 to do it...)  The final five applicants will take part in a 'Taste Challenge' next year (applications close on 14th December 2010).

Interested in applying?  Just click here.

Wednesday, 20 October 2010

Meet 'The Beauties'

Last night, Beauty Bible watched Harrods turn pink (for Pink Ribbon month), and then defrosted at a little soirée with Elizabeth Hurley.  (Who told us we should be feeling sorry for her, pressing the 'on' switch wearing no tights and a skimpy, one-shouldered pink dress. Well, Elizabeth, we actually did...!)  Just outside the Georgian Restaurant, though, we spotted a wonderful photographic exhibition by our friend Evelyn Lauder.  It's called 'The Beauties' and should you be feeling a) philanthropic and b) in need of something gorgeous for your bedroom wall, get down to Harrods Fourth Floor pronto (the exhibition is in place until 24th October).  'The Beauties' are Evelyn's collection of vintage ceramic lady head vases, in which she's popped a few pretty blooms.  (In 'Haughty Hetty', above, we spotted one of the heaven-scented Double Delight roses that Evelyn grows on her roof terrace overlooking Central Park - which just happens to be Jo's favourite rose, too.)  The prices are from £410-550 framed - but all proceeds go to Evelyn's nominated cancer research charities, including the Breast Cancer Research Foundation (founded by Evelyn) for their UK research programmes, including those at Breakthrough Breast Cancer and the Royal Marsden Institute of Cancer Research.  As Evelyn explains, 'At once elegant and playful, head vases join two of my loves:  the beauty found in nature as seen in the flowers, and the beauty that we create through style, attitude, and - of course - make-up.'  We think they are a simply gorgeous way to support Pink Ribbon.

Tuesday, 19 October 2010

Om, sweet om...

As regular readers know, Jo recently skipped off to Italy for a Yoga break - which was just what il dottore ordered, after a particularly frenzied few months hurtling towards our deadline for The Anti-Ageing Beauty Bible.  And we thought you should know about her destination: The Shanti Centre, in the beautiful hills of Abruzzo (two hours from Stansted to Pescara).  The centre's been opened by lovely Yoga teacher Stephanie Bosanko, with her gifted foodie partner Rupert Fox generally responsible for the scrumptious food.  But the week Jo was there, Roo shared meal-prepping with Hayley North, a Brighton-based Scaravelli yoga teacher who came up with a sublime menu based on foods for this transitional time between summer and autumn:  nourishing stews and soups, delicious smoothies (many based on nut milks or green veg - much more delicious than that sounds!), and even a raw chocolate brownie on the last night.  The 'autumn cleanse' included five-and-a-half hours of classes a day with Hayley (including 7 a.m. Qigong), a mountain hike and a day at the beach, and Jo returned home feeling positively Tigger-bouncy.  In between, Jo experienced some of the best massages she's ever had, from Stephanie (Thai and Swedish styles) - and that's saying something;  there are beautiful walks nearby, too, as well as a sauna on-site.  The Shanticentre just published its timetable for 2011 - see link below - with extremely reasonable prices, making it the perfect yoga destination in particular for anyone on a budget (a week is from just £395 including meals with the current 'early bird' booking discount, but not including Ryanair flights).  Yoga bunnies, get clicking.

Sunday, 17 October 2010

Hurrah for Victoria Health!

We couldn't agree more with Harpers Bazaar, who've voted 'Best Health & Beauty website' in their Bazaar Beauty Hot 100.  As many of you know, VH (as those-in-the-know call it) offers a staggering selection of products - many of them exclusives which are sleuthed out by VH's super-stylish founder Gill Sinclair, and all dispatched faster than a speeding bullet in those signature black boxes...  We have only a handful of 'Beauty Bible-approved' websites that we recommend, and VH - with its tip-top customer service - is definitely top of the list.  Huge congratulations to Gill, and to co-founder Shabir Daya, pharmacist extraordinaire.  (What Shabir doesn't know about health/supplements/wellbeing could be inscribed on one of those teensy Sun Chlorella tablets that we can't live without.)  We sincerely hope that at VH Towers they're knocking back something fizzy - and we're not talking about effervescent vitamin C, here - to celebrate...

PS  Don't forget that as a Beauty Bible 'insider' you're entitled to a 5% discount on almost everything on the VH site, when you visit from our own website.  So:  click here for the VH page - and happy, healthy shopping...

Thursday, 14 October 2010

Sue Devitt: make-up guru and luxury vagabond

Indagare is one of our favourite travel websites:  an insight into the hippest places to stay, the up-and-coming holiday destinations - and lots of reviews of restaurants/hotels etc. closer to home which don't require hopping on an aeroplane.  We look forward to their bulletins pinging into our in-box (welcome diversion therapy - oh, OK, work avoidance tactic...)  So we thought you'd like to know that the latest update features a Q & A with Sue Devitt, globe-trotting make-up artist (creator of fave products such as the Eye Intensifier Pencil and Microquatic Blue Anti-Aging SPF30 Primer), whose collections are inspired by her often very intrepid travels, which have taken her from the Solomon islands to Asian rainforests.  The very readable bi-monthly newsletter is free - sign up now! - or click here to read Sue's Q & A, which focusses on her tips for travel in her native Australia.  But you can also upgrade your membership to Indagare to take advantage of custom trip-planning and special offers for members.  

PS  At the foot of Sue's Q & A, there's a link to interviews with Becca founder Rebecca Williams-Morrice and Katharine L'Heureux, founder of Kahina-Giving Beauty.  Gives us wanderlust...

Wednesday, 13 October 2010

Beauty's new peacnik

There's a new name on the natural cosmetics block:  Davina Peace.  If you ask us, repeating her name as a mantra is pretty sense-calming in itself.  ('Peace, peace, peace...')  But this ex-Saatchi dynamo - who's so passionate about organic living - has just launched a super-stylish signature range of candles and Soil Association-certified bodycare, which combines luxe with heavenly aromatherapeutic scents and eco-ethics.  Many hoops have been jumped through by Davina - a self-confessed perfectionist - to create sustainable packaging, too, right down to the organic cotton ribbon round the boxes.  We're re-using the fab, graphic gift box to stash clutter in the Beauty Bible office, and once our porcelain Ecosoya candles have snuffed their last - currently, we're into White Flowers No. 1 - they'll be perfect for spring posies.  The range - which lands in Harrods on 1st November and is already on her website, see below - spans Hand Cream, Body Oil and Body Cream at present, plus those candles:  all deeply luxurious, with a serious pleasure factor.  And next year there'll be skincare.  (Cue panting sounds from Beauty Bible office.  Well, we always were a couple of greenies.)

The world needs eco-heroines like Davina Peace.  So:  more power to her beautifully-moisturised, exquisitely fragrant elbow.

Tuesday, 12 October 2010

Kate Spade is about to pop up in London...

At Beauty Bible we're big fans of Kate Spade.  (In fact, we still feel wistful that her beautiful honeysuckle-based signature fragrance didn't have a longer life.)  Lovely luggage, sensational sunspecs, elegant stationery (and marvellous make-up bags, within the handbag range - the black patent ones are seriously covetable.  Oh, and don't get us started on Kate Spade shoes...)  So:  we couldn't be happier that Kate Spade will be popping up in Covent Garden tomorrow (a little corner of London that's seriously hip again now Apple's taken a bite out of the Piazza).  We'll be popping in ourselves from tomorrow.  In fact, looking at this beautiful artist's rendering we might just move right in.  (Though we'll have to move right out again when it closes on 10th November.)

Kate Spade, 7 Henrietta Street, London WC2E 8PW

Monday, 4 October 2010

Beauty Bible is taking a little holiday-ette...

Inspired by Eat, Pray, Love - and in recovery from having just input 24,000 scores for The Anti-Ageing Beauty Bible - blogmeisteress Jo is headed for the Abruzzo hills, from which she will return in a week refreshed, revived and raring to get behind the beauty scenes to blog again.

Wednesday, 29 September 2010


Our friend Sally Walton does a very nice line in vintage shopping bags and make-up bags.  (You may even have entered a prize draw to win one of her Aveda Festival Kits, earlier this summer...)  But since this is the 21st Century, and we are new converts to the iPad (the very best way to read blogs like this one, in our opinion), we had the idea that Sally could expand her Carry-A-Bag range and start making iPad covers, too.  They are so widely admired - Liz Earle herself has bought one, among others - that we thought it was time to share their loveliness with you.  Each one is unique - vintage, darlings! - but all are gorgeous, and if you have particular colours in mind Sally can tailor-make, so long as she's got the right fabric.  They're £30 each and you'll find them on her site under 'Specials' (but do have a browse at the gorgeous one-offs, while you're there).  Soooooo much nicer than some old boring black plastic iCover, we say.

Monday, 27 September 2010

The prettiest li'l App we ever did see...

Thanks to India Knight (whose Posterous blog we just l-u-r-v-e) for steering us in the direction of this nifty little iPhone App.  What's it got to do with beauty?  Well, it's beautiful, that's what!  With a choice of incredibly pretty images and space for a short message, you can use it to send personalised invitations to friends via text or e-mail, or messages of love/support/thanks.  Cartolina is priced £1.79 at the App Store, and has a useful little built-in calendar which pops up to remind you your friend's birthdays/anniversaries etc. (Which qualifies it as a stress-buster, in our book:  no more angst-ing over not getting to the postbox in time to slip a card in the mail.  One of these is definitely just as lovely...)

PS  India's Tweets are as funny as her books;  follow her @indiaknight.  (And of course follow us @Beauty_Bible)!

Friday, 24 September 2010

Fornasetti's smokin'...

We've always been partial to a little bit of Fornasetti around the casa.  Sexy tables and chairs and furnishings, fabrics, even wallpaper.  (Actually, we're kicking ourselves for not picking up lots of pieces before the prices went stratospheric.)  Even if you don't know the name Fornasetti, you'll recognise the designs at 50 paces.  And now everyone can have a bit of (more affordable) Fornasetti fabulousness, with the launch of their scented home accessories, based on the designs by this celebrated Milanese painter, sculptor, interior decorator and engraver.  Just touched down at Selfridges, there are scented candles, room sprays, scent spheres - and very wonderful incense burners, which are a quantum leap forward from the yoga-studio-worthy inlaid wooden versions most of us have to make do with, while the candles, we think, would make quirkily stylish containers for Q-tips and cotton wool, once they've burned their last.  (And a bonus:  the candles themselves have been created by Cire Trudon, currently Beauty Bible's scented-candlemaker-of-choice, with a wonderfully aromatic blend of lavender, thyme, cedarwood, incense and labdanum.)

Fornasetti, you've lit our fire.

Tuesday, 21 September 2010

It's National Spaaaaaaaah Week

Well, reclining in a tub of rosepetals is where we'd definitely like to be right now.  (Especially Jo, who is recovering from hosting 200 wedding guests in her garden last Saturday.)  So as it's National Spa Week, we think you ought to know about the website Wahanda - tag-line 'Health, Beauty, Happiness' - which offers great discounts on spa treatments up and down the country:  lots of 2-for-1s, in particular, so you can escape with a girlfriend or even a partner.  (If your chap is man enough not to mind a rosepetal or two.)  The Aroma Decadence Package at the ultra-gorgeous May Fair Spa - at the hotel of the same name - is looking particularly good to us, at £159 for two people, including a Moroccan steam cleansing ritual, Aroma salt glow, aromatherapy cocoon body wrap, scalp and foot massage and full use of the spa facilities.  (There, we told you it was a good deal.  They start at much less than that, though - especially the 'mob deals' - and the special discounts also extend to fab hairdressers, including Lisa Shepherd.)  Oh, we do love a beauty steal.  Our only challenge? Finding time to sniff the rosepetals as we hurtle towards our deadline for The Anti-Ageing Beauty Bible...  Guess we'll have to settle for repeating the word 'spa', like a mantra, and rely on that to bring our blood pressure down.

Monday, 20 September 2010

Now we have office envy!

At Beauty Bible we've always believed that your office surroundings are important.  (After all, most of us spend more waking hours there than at home.)  A bunch of flowers, a nice Aromatherapy Associates oil or a Neom candle burning in the background, a few great pictures or a 'mood-board' of lovely images on the wall are all de-stressing and life-enhancing, at once.  But having recently nipped in to visit the PR for too-cool-for-school beauty brand Benefit, we have to concede:  in-house PR Jazzy Kaur has elevated office chic to a whole new level.  Pink toaster, pink Roberts radio - even a pink Smeg dishwasher.  (And this is her 'desk'!)  We were the only green (with envy!) thing in the office.

Tuesday, 14 September 2010

Get ready for Fire & Ice

Last year, Revlon brought back Cherries in the Snow - one of their iconic reds.  This year, it's the turn of Fire & Ice - created in the 50s as the most perfect bold and dazzling scarlet you ever did see - to be revived.  Beauty Bible's toenails are currently so brightly pillarboxy red you can probably see them from Google Earth - but the rest of you will have to wait till the start of December to get your hands (and feet) on this gorgeous polish.  (And we'll Tweet when Fire & Ice is on the counters).  Aside from the I-have-someone-else-to-do-my-housework nail shape, though, couldn't this advert be 2010, not 1952...?

Tuesday, 7 September 2010

And if you happen to be in Harrods...

...  Don't miss the exhibition of Estée Lauder fragrance and powder compacts, showcasing many of the most collectible limited editions they've issued over the years.  It's the kick-off for the celebrations marking 50 years of Lauder at Harrods (London was the first city outside the States 'colonised' by Mrs. Lauder, and Harrods was the debut stockist here...)  The fourth floor gallery (you can double up with a visit to The Perfume Diaries) features these miniature versions of the Harrods' teddy - and Beauty Bible is reliably informed that the folks at Lauder are let in on each year's top secret design even before staff at the shop, so they can get the matching teddy compact designed!  (PS  There's an iPod commentary, as you walk around...)

The Estée Lauder Jewelled Compact Exhibition runs at Harrods from 2nd September until 2nd October 2010.

Wednesday, 1 September 2010

The Perfume Diaries officially opens tomorrow...

The most important exhibition about fragrance to be staged in the UK for, oh, aeons, is throwing open its doors to the public at Harrods tomorrow.  This must-visit show for scentaholics is curated by Roja Dove (who else?), who's giving Beauty Bible a private tour on Monday.  So:  watch this space for the behind-the-scenes gossip and fragrant insights...

Tuesday, 31 August 2010

Charles Worthington goes logo

Oops. Must be the weather. When Beauty Bible lunched with uberhairdresser Charles Worthington the other day, we completely forgot to take a photo of him for the blog looking tanned and totally St. Tropez, where he's summering in his villa. As you do, when you've sold your haircare company for - well, let's just say lots. However, control-freak-in-a-good-way that he is, Charles is still extremely hands-on with his range (and his salons), and is rightly rather proud of the new packaging for the Charles Worthington products, which grew out of a logo he designed himself. (Put that in your pipe, expensive design agencies.) With soft pastels, silver caps and a very classy CW monogram, we'd say they're rather Ralph Lauren, actually, and would elegantly grace any bath or shower room. (It hits the stores any day now, in September.) Note: like an inreasing number of hair brands, the range incorporates a collection - Time Defy - for ageing hair, which is currently the coiffure world's Big Thing. Now there are so many high-tech solutions for lines, wrinkles and age spots, beauty's turning its attention to our ageing follicles, for which anyone over 40 should be grateful. So: gold star all round, Charles. And enjoy the rest of your St. Trop summer. (Jealous, us...?)

Sunday, 29 August 2010

Follow your nose to Avery Fine Perfumery

Although Beauty Bible did succumb to temptation and nip into Avery Fine Perfumery a couple of weeks back incognito, this week was the first chance we had to wallow in all its fragrant temptations: a long session of spritzing and zooshing, an olfactory meander through niche-but-noteworthy fragrance brands (many only available at this location, in the UK).  The brainchild of Celso Fadelli, an Italian distributor, London’s been chosen as the flagship of what he plans to be a global chain of ‘cult’ perfumeries.  (The second is in the former Manhattan nightclub Limelight.  Ah, those were the days…)  What you'll find:  Hype Noses candles (pictured below – we especially like woodsmoke-y Cheminée), which have wooden wicks that crackle softly in the background.  On the scent front, there’s Esteban, from Paris, sun-drenched Carthusia fragrances from Capri (the world’s oldest fragrance house), husband-and-wife team Nez à Nez, Boellis (a stunning men's cologne from a Naples barbershop…)  Jo is looking forward to getting her hands (or more precisely her wrists) on a shortlist of some of these truly extraordinary fragrances to review in depth on - but meanwhile, if you’re anywhere near Bond Street, follow your nose (and our example) and let your sense of smell revel in one of the most spectacular selections of under-the-radar scents anywhere on the planet.  

Avery Fine Perfumery,  27 Avery Row, Mayfair, London W1K 4AY

Thursday, 26 August 2010

Magnetically attracted to...

... this palette (only available from the States via, or at Fred Segal - one of our favourite L.A. beauty pitstops).  It's magnetic - so you simply slot in all your favourite pans of colour (blusher, lip gloss, highlighter, shadow etc.) - and it comes in a choice of shades for the case (silver definitely chicest).  Typing this with fingers firmly crossed that a savvy UK beauty site imports this PDQ, in which case:  you'll be the first to know.