I’ve long been particular about my style and appearance. As an early teen I remember scouring several branches of Topshop to find the belted cardigan that most resembled the one featured on the Calvin Klein catwalk (and then getting hacked off when other stores started stocking similar ones too). Around the same time, I saved my pocket money until I could afford to go to the big department store in a nearby city to buy the just released Yves Saint Laurent Touch Eclat and was super chuffed when the sales assistant gave me a load of extra samples too.
Now I’m a freelance writer with an interest in fashion and beauty, I spend even more time thinking about and researching lovely things. When I write about articles, I try to place them in their broader context and discuss their significance and meaning too. I don’t want my work to read like a fluffed up press releases. That said, it seems daft for me to not find a way to simply and quickly share some of the products I come across in the line of work and pleasure if I think other people might like them.
As a result, I’ve decided to introduce ‘Tuesday Reviews Day’ to my blog. Each week’s listicle will will feature a handful of products, ranging from bargain beauty buys to best biscuits (I’m lining up a festive special on that one already!). I’m not an affiliate so I don’t stand to gain from recommending anything that I include – every item listed is genuinely something that I think warrants a shout out.
I hope that you find this new feature both a fit of fun and useful too. Let me know if your thoughts on what I’ve included and whether you’ve been tempted to try any!
Last week, we had the five items I’ve been most complimented on this season. This week, my thoughts have turned to the festive season. I’m not talking about actual red wine, nor the UB40 song with the title that inspired my choice of wording. This column is about some red wine coloured goodies that can help you to feel Christmassy without loosing a sense of style. If you’d rather avoid a cheap scratchy jumper or anything else marketed as ‘novelty’ for December then these four ideas might help…
A dark red shoe make a great nod to the festivities while also being a pair that you can wear during other seasons too; I actually picked up these shoe boots from Office back in February and have worn them throughout the year but I think they’ll come into their own this month. Choose comfortable ones and you can easily substitute them for your regular black pair across the days of December as well as the nights too.
Mine are no longer available but Office has a huge selection in a similar hue and price (c £68). My particular favourites are their Chelsea boots, patent loafers and – if you’re looking for a definite party shoe – velvet bow mules.
Dark nail varnish
In the picture above I’m wearing peacock green nail varnish on my feet but in the weeks ahead I’ll be donning a dark number that tones with the open toe boots. I recently stumbled upon Nails Inc’s Victoria (£14), which is a very dark maroon shade. Two thin coats (and no top coat) on my fingernails dried pretty quickly and lasted four days before they chipped so if you’re looking for a reasonably priced varnish for your hands you could do much worse than this one!
Nars Red Lizard lipstick
An old favourite of mine is Nars Red Lizard Semi Matte Lipstick (£21). Generally I love Nars lip products as they all have a great level of pigment meaning even strong colours stay put without constant attention and touching up. This shade is an old fashioned hue in the best way – one slick and I feel like a 1940s film star. If you don’t normally wear make-up but fancy a bit of playing with colour for Christmas, this is an easy way in. Smudge it on with your finger for a less dense effect.
Go Gung Ho
Last week I interviewed Sophie Dunster, the creator of new ethical fashion label Gung Ho Design. While in her studio, I kept getting distracted by the rail of awesome flower earrings that were on display and I couldn’t leave without getting myself a pair of gold hoops adorned with red roses (£15 although price varies depending on size of earrings). My Christmas party outfit planning will start with these beauties and work downwards! You can shop Gung Ho here.
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