30 September 2009

A Little Bit Of Inspiration...

... for a rainy afternoon in London Town. A good friend of mine sent through this awesome link to me a couple of days ago. Since then, I have been obsessively absorbing the gradientmagazine.com site - it features arts, fashion, music, culture and lifestyle posts that explore vivid, original and unique people, including the work of Spain-based photographer and art director Paco Peregrin whose work below is beautifully surreal.

I seriously suggest you take a look at this so-cool-it-hurts website.

Product of the Week: Powder Blusher in Katie

This month's Product of the Week [yes, yes I know, I know...] is the unbelievably popular Powder Blusher in Katie.

I have personally never been a big fan of pink blusher [coral, coral, coral for me!] but I can't deny the sales figures and the shouts-from-the-rooftops about this blusher! It was named after Illamasqua's Brand Director Kate Massarella [before Katie joined the team!] as it was her favourite blush in the collection - she has quite pale skin, deep brown hair and brown eyes [the italian in her!] and the pop of pale pink that this blush gives her means that it is never out of her handbag.

Katie even has it's own Youtube video
, it's that popular! I mean, a nine and a half minute video dedicated to a blusher?! Has to be put forward for a Product of the Week nomination!

This blush has received a massive amount of coverage both in Editorial and online, being described as

Weheartthis.com gave a great review:

"As a self-confessed blush addict, I was euphoric when I received the powdered blusher in Katie to test. A little background on my coloring—I am ridiculously pale with dark hair and pale hazel eyes. I need blush to look alive. Most of my blushes tend to be in a deep rose or red shade and I blend them down, but even then, it’s probably a little too much color for bolder lips.

For years, I’ve been searching for a pale pink blush that is a good counterpoint to dark lips, but everything I’ve found was so pale that it didn’t show up on even me or it just didn’t last very long. Answering my prayers is Katie. First off, the packaging is gorgeous.

The blush itself looks like a nondescript pale pink. Looks are deceiving. Once applied with a big, fluffy brush, I had the prettiest rosy cheeks every. It was pale enough to not compete with my other makeup, but had enough color impact that I looked alive and fresh. The best part? I didn’t have to reapply and this carried me through a whole 12 hours before I finally removed it when I washed my face at night.
I don’t think I can say enough great things about this blush, other than if I could give 6 stars, I would. I can’t wait to try their cream blush now…"

All of Illamasqua's Powder Blushers are high in pigmentation and the size of the product means that the pieces last a long, long time.

Powder Blushers retail at £16 through www.illamasqua.com

28 September 2009

Box News Flash!

Carrying on from Friday 18th September, when Alex created the magnificent "glitter bomb explosion!" Ancient Egypt meets Blade Runner looks for the House of Blue Eyes SS 2010 show, London Fashion Week roared ahead with plenty of Alex's work on display.

On Saturday 19th September, Hannah Marshall presented her first SS 2010 collection at Somerset House. The show consisted of LBD's in a variety of architectural forms, from sculpted shoulders to pointed hips and jagged spines. The edgy, yet very wearable, collection was adored by Alex, who describes the make-up look as, "very sexy, very desirable with a strong graphic. Hannah and I work very closely on make-up looks as she is so clued up on make-up and creating a statement through make-up. I wanted the overall look to be very strong and masculine from the front, yet soft and feminine from the side." Cue frantic googling of Hannah Marshall to try and find a profile catwalk image from the show! I couldn't find one, so you'll have to take Alex's word from it! This is a very unusual look, I say to Alex. She laughs, "I call it slith - the slick goth!"

If you don't know much about Hannah Marshall, you will soon - she has designed outfits for the likes of Florence and the Machine and counts Erin O Connor as a close friend. Erin even suprised the fashionistas on the front row by closing the show. Alex, of course, did her make-up.

I personally love the make-up from this show and I have a step-by-step from Alex on how to recreate it, so I shall put a post up about that later this week!

Alex also worked with Malcolm Pate on a film called 'Encryption' for Hannah Marshall that ran during the show. "It was filmed where I live - it was such a great location, really industrial and fitted the mood perfectly."

Alex also worked on shows for Wintle ["a menwear show with a very strong, Leonardo di Caprio style brow"] and Carolyn Massey ["such fun - the feel was sunburnt, festival boys so I used a lot of reddish bronzer on the face and neck!]

So, other than fashion week, what else has Alex been up to? "I've had a lot of time talking to journalists about my book. Not just fashion and beauty press, but art and culture press too as the book is as much about art and photography as it is about beauty." Sounds tiring. "It is! I also have Homes Etc coming over to my flat soon to run a piece on my decorative style." I'll keep an eye out for that one!

What is on the agenda for this week? "Well, today I have a meeting with Katie to discuss product development and then I am heading over for a Gareth Pugh test shoot." Further probing gives me no details - all artists are sworn to secrecy on their looks with designers until after the show.
As it is Paris Fashion Week next, Alex is set to be very busy, so I ask her how she takes time out. "When I'm in Paris, I always take time to go around the vintage shops. And there is a great bar in the Louvre hotel, which is where anyone whose anyone is after the shows!"

Alex sets off for Paris tomorrow for a test at Anne Valerie Hash in the morning and again with Gareth Pugh in the evening. Wednesday is the show day for both Anne and Gareth and on Thursday I have the test for Veronique Leroy followed by the show on Friday. "I'm then jumping on the Eurostar from Paris to London and early Saturday I will be on a train to the Masterclass is Selfridges Trafford which I am really looking forward to. In the evening I will be back to London and then back on the Eurostar." Phew! "Doesn't stop there - Sunday is the test for Leonard and Monday is the Leonard show. Tuesday is the test for Collette Dinnigan and Wednesday is the show. After that I shall be coming home and chilling out!"

Trafford Centre: Alex Box Masterclass

Alex Box hosted a Masterclass at Selfridges Oxford St on Friday 3rd July and Saturday 4th July for the make-up obsessives of London - as most of you are aware, we are now hosting a similar event for all you Northern lads and lasses at Selfridges Trafford!

The date of the event is Saturday October 3rd and there will be two classes - Night-time Divas is at 12-2 and this class has only 9 spaces left! The second class - Dare to be Different - has sold out, but we are asking Selfridges very nicely if they would mind if we brought along some more guests!

Come along and learn the art of application whilst honing your own skills and revealing your inner alter ego from a master of creative, artistically innovative make-up.

If you would like to attend the Night-time Divas class [or try your luck with the Dare to be Different class!] give the counter a call on 0161 629 1187.

I will post all the pics and gossip from the event next week!

25 September 2009

A Child Of The Jago SS10 show - The Fallout

Following on from my People Update post the other day, here are the pics from the A Child of Jago catwalk show!

Joe Corre and Simon Armitage have created not just a clothing line but an entire concept at their store on Great Eastern Street in Shoreditch. The curiosity shop-like feel and historical references create a store that is wondrous in both atmosphere and the clothes that it retails.

The stylistic inspiration behind the aptly named 'Terrorist' collection was the morning-after-the-night-before in terms of attitude, with the clothing an unpredictable mix of tailored pieces and edgy cuts.

Adam led the team that consisted of Helen and Halimah as well as other freelance artists to create bespoke looks for each of the models. The below picture shows Helen going through the look book prior to the show.

Check out the awesome backstage pics!

Can anyone spot a certain Ms Westwood in this photo? FYI - she is Joe Corre's mother!

Burlectric At SEOne

Illamasqua provided the make-up for the fashion show part of this Burlesque meets Music meets Fashion meets Technology event on Saturday the 5th September at SEOne club in London Bridge. The underground club [one of the largest in London] was decked out to provide an invigorating, sensual experience - there was even a candyfloss stand, but I was more interested in the Absolut bar that offered a myriad of delicious cocktails.

The make-up was provided by Adam, Halimah and Lucy who instructed some London College of Fashion artists on the key looks for the show.

Featuring up-and-coming designers such as Matthew Harding, Blandine Bardeau and Victoria Jensen, the show was an absolute triumph. The models stalked their way through the crowd and onto a rotating tea cup [yes, you did read that right!] to the sounds of Blur "Song 2" and other club hits spun by DJ Goldie Rocks. Traditional aspects of fashion shows were blown away and the diverse fashion on offer was very exciting.

After the fashion show, there were several burlesque performances and a random assortment of entertainment in the fashion room.

Roisin Murphy, Electro extradonaire, provided an amazing DJ Set and even though she is heavily pregnant, belted out a few hits and even some exclusive tracks from her new album.

The crowd went predictably wild and with acts such as The Coolness [who will be remembered for their on-stage antics as much as their actual performance...!], David E Sugar and Dega Breaks providing an eclectic mix of indie and electro, it was a night that the mix of indie kids, fashionistas and cool clubbers will not forget.

Solstice V Phenomena

This September in London has been really strange - I think we have had better weather over the past fortnight than any in July or August, overall! It's been sunny and warm and yet there is still that lingering sense of Summer and anticipation of Autumn.

That's all well and good, but where does it leave you when it comes to choosing your make-up for the day?! Confused, that's where. Normally, I am cracking open the burgundies and the smoky chocolate eye shadows, the red lipstick [my staple for September as it's my birthday month and red lippy always makes me feel sophisticated and grown-up!] and the darker-than-summer Eye Brow Cake at this time of the year; but I have been completely thrown. I'm still wearing my Bronzing Duo and Outcast/ Predator combo for a Summer look.

And of course, I am still piling on the Liquid Metal in 'Solstice', even though the latest Liquid Metal in 'Phenomena' is the latest beauty editor crush. Below is without flash and below that is with flash, swatched on my very dry [ah, so winter IS coming then...!] hand...

I have been experimenting with looks using this product, but it just doesn't seem the time to move in to silver territory just yet. That said, I swatch and I love!

As it's Friday, I'm doing my usual fashion refresh courtesy of the fabulous net-a-porter.com and have discovered this gorgeous Proenza Schouler jacquard cap-sleeved dress. The stunning rose-gold detail would be perfectly complimented by a slick of 'Solstice' across the lids and with a nude lip [perhaps Intense Lipgloss in 'Absorb'?].

On the other hand, there is this mesmerising Alexander Wang [who can do no wrong, in my opinion!] LBD number that would look so rock'n'roll with a smudge of Liquid Metal in 'Phenomena'....

Alexander Wang spider lace dress £720
Proenza Schouler jacquard cap-sleeved dress £1,510

24 September 2009

Pink Lips!

London Fashion Week heralded the return of the statement Pink Lip. It has been almost impossible to open a magazine and not see plumped up, barbie like lips and if your alter ego is a Barbie doll-esque type, this is the swatch post for you!

Antonio Berardi, House of Holland and Marc Jacobs [at New York Fashion Week] all created beautiful looks with dazzling pink lips.

I absolutely love a pink lip - depending on the shade and your outfit it can be cute, girly, tongue-in-cheek, sophisticated but always, always confidence boosting.

I had a flick through our Intense Lipglosses this morning and thought I would put together a swatch post that demonstrates to you the depth and range we have of pink lips.

So here we go ...


I have to start with Petulant, because it is without a doubt my favourite Illamasqua Intense Lipgloss of the moment [I say that because I am so fickle with lipglosses!] The intensity of the pink is very unexpected judging by the lipgloss case - it's definitely a case of trying it on the back of the hand and then picking your jaw off the floor. The photos below are NOT doing it justice - I really suggest getting to a counter and trying this gloss out for the sheer wow factor!

Below is without flash.

Below is my face of the day with Petulant Intense Lipgloss - this picture has made me realise I need to do some serious eye brow grooming! I am also wearing Powder Eye Shadow in 'Geisha' and Medium Pencil in 'Please' [a really lovely navy pencil that I can't get enough of right now] and a touch of Illuminator in 'Fondle' on my cheeks to perk up my desperately-in-need-of-a-facial complexion!


A great, hot pink that is fuschia - the photo below is not doing it justice as it really is hot hot hot! I think it looks great on all skin tones, but I think blondes with blue eyes who do not wear a lot on their eyes or cheeks would absolutely adore the 'pop' that this pink would give them.

Above is without flash, below is with flash


Indulge is our most vibrant pink - very cool and very bubblegum. Again, photos not seeming to do much justice - very frustrating! Extremely pigmented [as ever!] this pure neon pink cannot help but get you noticed!

Above is without flash, below is with flash.


Perform is a very warm red/pink that is as hot as Petulant but reddier. This colour works extremely well on olive and black skin tones and makes a gorgeous glossy flush on the cheeks, too.


Mistress is a gorgeous coral toned lipgloss, with a touch of pink. It is universally flattering, as corals tend to be, and I love it for it's blendability - if used quite sheer [or mixed with Sheer Lipgloss in 'Brilliant'] it becomes pinkier, whereas used generously it builds up into an almost neon orange/coral.

Above is without flash, below is with flash


A lovely warm gloss with an even mixture of pink, orange and red tones. I love this because it is a softer way to wear red on your lips if you are not 100% confident to wear red.

I personally think this is a colour that would look amazing on black and olive skin tones due to the warmth of the shade.

Above is without flash, below with flash.

Dystopia Look On Counter

So, you've placed your first order of Dystopia and now you have them sitting in front of you at your vanity unit.

So. What to do?! Well, one of the beauties of this collection is the versatility that it provides - an array of looks from robotic, smokey and stylistic, romantic, soft and shimmery through to full on, glitz and glam.

Our lovely artists on counter are here to give you inspiration for your new products and Krystle at Selfridges Trafford has sent in some photos of her work - Leanne from the Newcastle counter was her model!

So what products did she use?


Concealer in 350 as a base with Pure Pigment layed on top. This was then followed by Pure Pigment in 'Lust' on the inner third of the eye for a romantic effect. Pure Pigment in 'Furore' kept the shimmer levels on full and was lightly dusted under the brow and across the cheekbones. Powder Eye Shadows in 'Virus', 'Maybe?' and 'Sex' were also used to add a multi dimensional look and to mix up the textures. Eye Liner Cake in 'Mislead' was mixed with Sealing Gel and a bold eye line created both under and on top of the lash lines.


Cheeks were sculpted using Powder Blush in 'Primal' and a subtle flush added with Powder Blusher in 'Unrequited'.


The lips were shaded in using Medium Pencil in 'Titivate' - a bright fushcia pink and coloured in using Intense Lipgloss in 'Petulant' mixed with Intense Lipgloss in 'Galactic' - my new favourite combo - for a vivid 80s twist.


Krystle's nails are a mix of Nail Varnish 'Obsess' [as the base colour] Velocity, Boosh and Glory - don't they look fantastic?!

Anyway, hope this has given you some ideas and I will keep posting new looks from the collection!