Friday, 26 March 2010

Jo Malone's dark secrets

We'll be honest: we've never really felt rapturous about any of Jo Malone's colognes. All perfectly pretty, airy, sheer, wearable - but they've never delivered the mystery and depth that a couple of Mitsouko-lovers like us personally long for in a fragrance. Suddenly, all that's changed. A wee while ago, Jo Malone opened in the Middle East - and their boutiques there have been among their most successful in the world. Middle Eastern perfumery is a fascinating tradition in itself: elements like rose, oud wood (which is actually decayed wood that gives a really sexy, animalic note to perfumes), patchouli... So, inspired by that success, Jo Malone will later this summer launch a Cologne Intense collection, which they unveiled to us in the eye-poppingly gorgeous surroundings of Leighton House, in Holland Park. Formerly Lord Leighton's studio, it's like stepping through a window to the Orient, with its turquoise Damascene tiling, tinkling fountains, wooden screens, day-beds and stuffed peacock standing sentinel over the stairway. (And, for our snap, over the scent bottles.) Inky black glass shields the bottles'contents - but it's the 'juices' that have really blown us away. Soft, sweet Iris & Musk. Delectable Rose Water & Vanilla (think Turkish delight - in a good way). Going even darker and deeper, Oud & Bergamot (which fuses citrus and smouldering, bonfire-y woods), and Amber & Patchouli - truly something to thrill our inner hippy. Never mind Dubai. Do buy! (They'll be on sale from 1st July at a handful of Jo Malone boutiques including Selfridges, Brook Street and Sloane Street.)

Tuesday, 23 March 2010

We love our jobs!

Sometimes we get to open the mail to something like THIS! Merçi, Chanel. (It's a preview of their ultra-bright summer Les Pop-Up de Chanel range...)

Friday, 19 March 2010

10 HairRaising reasons to buy YOU Mag on Sunday

Whatever you do, make sure you don't miss this Sunday's YOU Mag (in the Mail on Sunday) - because you'll have the chance to win a session with one of the 10 hair stars pictured here (rather grainily, by Jo): Richard Ward, Charles Worthington, Kerry Warn (he 'does' Nicole Kidman among other stars), Lee Stafford, James Brown, Louise Galvin, Errol Douglas, Trevor Sorbie, John Frieda. (A rarer-than-hen's-teeth opportunity because these days, John only cuts his own kids' hair.) It's all in a great cause: you'll be able to text to enter the draw for your chosen stylist, and the money raised will go to HairRaising, the wonderful charity our friend Mr. Frieda's set up to fund a new operating theatre at Great Ormond Street, with amazing support from the hair industry - and, we hope, you. (Noticed any of the 'hair greats' missing from this line-up? You got it: Nicky Clarke. Who turned up shortly after this photo was taken, 48 minutes better-late-than-never, to a huge round of applause. And yes, you can win a session with Nicky, too. Just don't expect him to turn up with his scissors on time!)

For more HairRaising info and to get your local salon joining in, see YOU Mag - and visit:

Monday, 15 March 2010

The red carpet goes tan-tastic

Did you notice that this year's Oscar contenders were looking particularly 'healthy'? The reason: St. Tropez's hit squad of self-tanners hit the ground running in Hollywood, and each of the team fake-tanned as many as 40 celebrities before their red carpet moments. We know you're all gagging to know just who. Well, sadly, lovely Nicola Joss - über-beauty therapist (pictured - she's the one wearing clothes) - was silenced by the confidentiality agreement she'd signed. But when we caught up with her fresh from Tinseltown, Nicola did unbutton her lip to show us St. Tropez's latest innovations: an ultra-dark tan, plus shimmering 'highlighters' (one almost blue-tinted, one - launching soon - suffused with gold). These are being used to create 'definition' on the body, accenting some areas. And increasingly, self-tanning's being used to create the illusion of slimness. (Think 'contouring' - like you do to the face - but for the body.) Possibly not to be tried at home unless yo're really skilled, but luckily St. Tropez are opening more and more 'booths' and salons, around this less-than-sunny land, to 'sculpt' you for the bikini season. Which - trust us - really will arrive, sometime this year.

Beauty Bible Blogtip: 'After you've applied St. Tropez - or had it applied to you - you've got two hours to shower it off before the colour "takes"', explains Nicola. So: if you have a change of heart and decide that pale is interesting after all, it's not too late to un-tan your suntan. (PS We suggest you also look out for Tan Detox, St. Tropez's new bath oil designed to remove unwanted self-tan build-up. Yes, bath oil. You read that right. Clever, or what?)

Friday, 12 March 2010

Make mother's day

Couldn't resist this beautiful shot of Penhaligon's pearl-bedecked window on Regent Street, showcasing their Artemisia fragrance. (Floral/fruity/sweet and blissfully soft, with notes of green apple, lily of the valley, jasmine tea, powdery violet and vanilla.) Have a lovely day, whether you're the Mummy, or are visiting your Mum. Or if (like all three of us at Beauty Bible) you sadly haven't got a Mum any more, dab on her favourite scent and remember... (Artemisia, No. 5, Joy - whatever...) Its ability to trigger memories is why we love fragrance so very much...

Thursday, 11 March 2010

Decisions, (organic) decisions

This week saw Beauty Bible's annual outing to Bristol to judge the first round of the Soil Association Organic Beauty Awards (as you can see from this pic of Sarah with the SA's Feona Horrex): a marathon session of dabbing, daubing, sniffing and smelling (and enough hand-washing to make us feel like veritable Howard Hugheses). The usual contenders were out in force: Neal’s Yard, Spiezia, Inlight, Essential Care and Skin Blossom (a teensy affordable brand which has two ‘steals’ in our most recent book). But we’re always pleased to stumble across new organic finds – so: hello to Pinks Boutique (great scrubs, complete with nifty spoon for scooping), Botanicals (Jo very much enjoyed slathering on their Mint & Tea Tree Foot Balm last night) and Lulu & Boo (nice typography on the packaging and some lovely smells). Our shortlisted products (NB not necessarily the ones pictured!) will now be trialled in the usual way – 10 testers per product giving their opinions (there are volunteers queuing up at the Soil Association), with a special team of babies on standby to trial the babycare category! Watch this space for the ‘gongs’, announced in April at the Natural Products Show (and, of course, on our site).

Saturday, 6 March 2010


We've just been to quite the prettiest fragrance launch of 2010 so far. Take one majestic Georgian house in Fitzroy Square (which conveniently happened to have walls of perfect Dior grey). Add the kind of rose-and-jasmine strewn flower bower that any bride fantasises of being married inside. Accesorise with one huge blow-up of a crazily flowertastic advertisement, snapped by photographer Tim Walker (we rather fancy dead-heading in a rose-strewn hat like the model's). Then in the background, run a delectable commercial by Sofia Coppola set in summertime Paris. You know you're being lined up to smell something very lovely indeed - and Miss Dior Chérie certainly doesn't disappoint, with its blood orange and neroli, Turkish rose and gardenia, jasmine and ylang-ylang floatiy-freshness, a lovely twist on the legendary Miss Dior original. On 2nd April you'll be able to discover it for yourself, but meanwhile, it has definitely filled a couple of fragranceaholic beauty editors with the belated joys of spring.

Friday, 5 March 2010

Introducing Amy...

We wanted to introduce you to a new 'face' at Beauty Bible: Amy Eason. For the last 14 months Amy's been in charge of our 'Beauty dungeon' (Jo's basement, where all the 1000s of products for our Tried & Testeds come in - and are efficiently sent out again to our testers). Since she joined us, she's also been to countless launches, tried lots of facials and treatments and has generally made herself invaluable to Beauty Bible. So: the new edition of our website will go live this evening (Friday 5th), and we wanted you to know that for the first time you can read not only our We Loves..., but also about the products that have impressed Amy. (Who's 24, used to run her own art gallery, loves vintage clothing - which she sources in the many vintage stores in Hastings and on eBay - and is so beautiful that she could frankly have come straight from central casting for a beauty assistant's job. This snap from Charles Worthington's Dream Hair launch doesn't do her justice!) We know you'll love her, too.