Sunday, May 25, 2008

Brush Me Up

These are my dear ones without whom doing makeup wouldn't have been possible for me.I've been collecting good quality branded brushes since sometime and still would be collecting more.I'm not particularly into any brand specifically and I have till now collected whatever I found good and could afford.I've many other unbranded brushes and I'm not able to decide whether I should display them or not.

I'll name and explain in my coming post....till then


Saturday, May 24, 2008

Makeup Classes with a Professional

Billy B is one the most influential makeup artists in the world.With many big names to his credit he is the founder of Billy B makeup brushes which are some of the things professional makeup artists swear by.
He is not only an advisor and makeup teacher associated with the Powder group but also a makeup artist to the stars.He has preped countless Hollywood Stars and himself happens to be a celebrity.
Billy B is the name associated with a genius,a magician and he just owns your face.These are some of the makeup lectures he has been taking.They are very influential and they changed the way I percieved makeup.
Do have a look and enjoy...

Contributors wanted

Hi Friends and Readers,
I'm looking for enthusiastic people who have profound knowledge in the field of beauty and have something to share, to contribute their articles to my blog.
Please write to me on and I'll revert back.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Makeup Miracles…

Makeup itself is so magical and if you’ve a brand who has dedicated more than 100 yrs in makeup then there is no looking back. When the legendary makeup maverick Mr.Max Factor started his own company he was attributed to be the father of most of the makeup inventions those days. One of them was the foundations that he used on Hollywood stars.
Since then its been the company’s forte to do one of the best foundations in the market. May it be Seamless or Color Adapt or Age Renew, Max Factor has never failed to enthrall us with their stuff. No wonder the hand behind all this is the makeup maestro Pat McGrath whose achievements are sung by the biggest and most prominent faces in fashion. She is called as the “most powerful woman in the makeup industry” by Vogue’s Anna Wintour and she has maintained it.

Anyways latest from their innovative technologies is the uber chic Miracle Touch Foundation. I have written about it earlier but every time I use it, it keeps me smitten all the time. It was long since I was searching for a cream foundation which would give me very smooth finish without any great effort. I started with Kryolan, which is a German cosmetic brand and their foundation seemed to be very heavy and greasy. Then I used some compact foundation but wasn’t satisfied and then this foundation came along.

At the Max Factor counter I tested a few shades and found a universal shade for Indian skin called Bronze.

This being a compact foundation you cannot guess the texture unless you touch it. It feels like liquid foundation and on application dries up to a nice powder finish. What an innovation? But the question is how to use it?

There are many ways of using Miracle Touch foundation and here are some: -

- They provide a sponge with the foundation. But for hygienic reasons its better not to use it. Incase you are using the sponge that they provide. Then first with clean hands take some product out of the compact. Warm it on the back of the hand and apply as tiny dots all over the place. Start with a less amount and gradually build up. Then with the sponge blend the foundation outwards and downwards as quickly as possible coz it dries off to a powdery finish. Generally one layer is sufficient to give a flawless finish.

- Since I use the foundation as an under eye concealer as well to hide light under eye circles, the product works as a miracle. I dab on some foundation using a concealer brush under eyes and then just blend it.

- Now I’ll tell you what I do? I use a foundation brush from The Body Shop or Smashbox cosmetics. The former one has a triangular head which helps me take the product easily on brush. Then I dab off the excess on the back of my hand and start with big strokes horizontally on the forehead blending into the hairline and then downwards and out wards centripetally. The synthetic bristles of the brush help in blending the product well into the skin. Then I warm up my hands and blend the foundation to give a smooth radiating finish. Then I dust some Shiseido Luminizing Powder over it to set the foundation. And there you have a perfect canvas.

- Its better to start of with less product because if you use a lot of product it might turn cakey and please remember that this foundation is not water resistant so its better to set it with powder.

- Using it over a makeup primer has additional benefits making the foundation glide smoother and last longer. I use MAC prep n prime and Shiseido’s Makeup smoothening Veil and it does wonders.

I love this foundation as it works on many skin types and tones and even on the darkest skin tones.
It is available at Max Factor counters nationwide for Rs.590. The only disadvantage buying this foundation is you get addicted to it. Others are only advantages….

Try them and let me know…

Next read: -
1. The brushes that I use and feel are good though I might not own them....
2.Matte and Satin eyeshadows that make statements..

Around the world with Lancôme and Christopher Kane

Lancôme is going to take us on a World Tour, literally with their all time favorite Juicy Tubes this season as a part of their limited edition. The tour will be with celebrated Bristish designer Christopher Kane who is the inspiration behind all this.

Aren’t you curious of what’s happening and what am I talking?
Well I’m talking about fashion destination inspired Juicy Tube lipglosses by Christopher Kane. He has not only designed the colours but also the flavors and the dressing styles of 9 different cities all over the world.

To celebrate Christopher’s sexy designs, flair with color and international mindset, Lancôme asked him to collaborate on a project for the iconic, oft-imitated Juicy Tubes franchise. The result: The Juicy Tubes World Tour, nine new lip glosses, each decorated with an illustration by Christopher. The shades, names and flavors were born from his fashion travels: from Rio, where, “the girls have an incredible kind of beauty,” to Paris, “the fashion capital of the world,” to New York, where “girls are groomed, sophisticated and so well dressed,” each captures the excitement of the hottest cities around.

Christopher is thrilled to be part of the Lancôme family and equally excited to be part of what he deems the “Juicy Tube phenomena.” “I have always loved the way a Juicy Tube can transform a lip with its patent texture and appearance,” he says. “It plumps the lip to perfection

Out of these four have launched in India and they are called Rio Mango, Red Hot New York, Paris Bubbly and Tokyo Plum Blossom. Each of these fabulous power packed glosses cost Rs.950 INR are available at Lancôme counters all over India. The best part about these glosses is that they aren’t sticky, they are extremely shiny and shimmery and yet have an air of sophistication and more over they are long lasting. Isn’t that what the girls-on-a-go want?
And please don’t forget to read some more information on Christopher Kane here: -

“He’s relatively new to the designer landscape, before graduating Central St. Martins he participated and won top prizes in the Lancome Color Design Awards - TWICE. Then he won the Harrod’s Award for Design which all led him to wild acclaim and kudos for his Spring 2007 fashion show. said the show “zings with amazing new energy and optimism”. Kane’s an international sensation it seems, someone we’re sure to see lots more of! He’s a favorite designer of Victoria Beckham and Kate Moss.”

Fantastic designer and fantastic ideas…and Lancôme makes me proud again.


PS: - shall do an inspired look the moment I grab a few of them. Till then keep blogging.

NEXT READ: - The subtle magic of touch…Miracle Touch Foundation by Max Factor and how to use it.

Monday, May 12, 2008

Happy Mothers Day - a makeup treat for my mom

Happy Mothers Day to all.
I love my mother the most and hope you do the same. Generally we celebrate by going out for dinner with the family and that’s why I did this look for her.
So I’m going to show you a look Tom Pecheux inspired from YSL Summer Spring 2008 collection. Minimalism in its true sense, yet very modern and something our mothers could carry very easily.

What you’d need: - (the prices have increased due to VAT and extra duties so I won’t be able to post the information on product rates)

- YSL Perfect Touch Radiant Brush Foundation*
- YSL Touché Éclat No.2 ( for my mother)*
- YSL Teint Parfait Complexion Enhancer no.3*
- YSL Matt & Radiant Pressed powder in #3 Pink Beige
- YSL Poudre De Soleil in #2 Golden Sun
- YSL Touché Blush in No.2 Coral
- YSL Pop Stick Blush in No.2 Strawberry/Raspberry*
- YSL Duo Lumiere E/S in #1 Heavenly Beige/Astral Brown*
- YSL Dessin Du Sourcils Eyebrow Pencil in #3 Glazed Brown
- YSL Long Lasting Eye Pencil in #11 Wood Brown and #2 Glacier White*
- YSL Faux Cils Mascara in #5Burgundy*
- YSL Lip twins in #6 Pink Harmony*
- Smashbox cosmetics Brushes

It’s not because it’s a YSL inspired look that I’m using their makeup. Its because my mother loves this brand a lot.
I’m using them as a professional and don’t worry if you feel like skipping some steps. I’m sure you’ll still look radiant. The products marked with * are the ones that are really important.

The look: -


Since the complexion is matte I used YSL’s Hydra Feel Oil free moisturizer and smoothed it over my mum’s skin. The nicest thing about this moisturizer is that it is so light weight and airy and really moisturizes well and doesn’t leave an oily residue. I massaged it into her skin for a good hydration level and just to improve facial circulation. This also works as a makeup base due to silicones in it. Then I smoothed out the foundation all over her face using a foundation brush and then blended with my fingers to push and blend the product. This foundation just disappears into the skin and imparts a lovely healthy complexion. Since the foundation is long lasting it is very good for parties and in the evenings it tends to reflect the soft lights in all directions giving a perfect flawless face.

My mum hardly has under eye circles (owing to my expertise) so I applied just a teeny bit of my holy-grail of makeup, touché éclat concealer. I dabbed it into the skin and set with some pressed powder using a blender brush.

Then with a foundation brush I applied some complexion enhancer onto the area where light naturally hits the face i.e. on apples of cheeks, bridge of the nose, centre of the forehead and chin. I loved their new spring 2008 collection and used a tiny bit of their pop stick blush on cheeks to give a radiant glow. It feels cool on touch and mum loved it because of the cooling sensation which is important in these days of summer heat.

Since the idea of the theme was to have a semi matte and yet glowing radiant complexion, I dusted the pressed powder liberally on her face and applied a little more of the matte part on the T zone to combat any oiliness. I used an extra fluffy powder brush to do this and then used a larger kabuki brush to blend.

Then to add a little warmth to her complexion with a (Lancôme) buffer brush I dusted some bronzing powder in the contours of her face and the jaw line. Subtle dusting of a coral blush added the required warmth on my mum’s face and she liked my soft fan brush even more.


I used the touché éclat concealer as an eye base. Dusted a little bit of powder and started the eye makeup. Firstly I lined the upper lid in a thin line using a chocolate brown pencil. I smudged it using a smudger brush to give softness to the look. In the crease and outer corners I subtly dusted a bronzy brown eyeshadow with a fluffy eyeshadow brush and blended it towards the brow bone. On the entire upper lid, inner corners of the eyes and the brow bone I dusted a sparkling beige eyeshadow to create a halo of light and still make the eyes appear softly made and radiant. These colors make my mom’s hazel brown eyes really stand out. I used a glacier white eyeshadow in the inner rim of the lower lid and blended some brown pencil in the outer corners to define the eyes.

Since the brow is really defined I used their ergonomic eye brow pencil to fill in my mum’s brows and then used the spool on the other end of the pencil to give it a nice shape. I hate unkempt brows and prefer grooming them as a first priority.

Since my mother has naturally long and luscious lashes I used some burgundy colored mascara to make her eyes pop out. I liked the deep brown red color which brings out the green from my mom’s hazel eyes and enhances her fair peaches and cream complexion.


My mother is a big fan of pink lippies and even after coaxing her for a warm paprika reddish plum lips she opted for the pink look. So I used the pinkish beige matte color from the lip twins lip duo and then used the pink gloss as an accent on the centre of the lips of course using a lip brush.

And voila my mum was ready for the evening dinner. She is not into much of hair styling so some hair clips and a dazzling beige saree completed the look.

Please let me know your comments if you’d like to try this look. Btw hope you’d a great Mothers Day Celebration.


PS: - please adjust the complexion shades as per your skin tone and color. Beauty experts at the YSL counters in Mumbai will help you with this.

Saturday, May 10, 2008

Beauty Awards

Cosmetic Executive Women or CEW award the best beauty products in different categories....

Unfortunately I couldn't write this year's nominations but these are the results. The products that I personally like are color coded.Enjoy reading....

-Bath & BodyBody Treatment – Mass

Olay Thermal Pedicure

-Body Treatment – Prestige

Dr. Andrew Weil for Origins ™ The Way of the Bath™ Matcha Tea Body Scrub

-Scented Bath and Body – Mass

JOHNSONS® Softoil™ Melt Away Stress Massaging Moisturizer

-Scented Bath and Body – Prestige

Tom Ford Beauty Black Orchid Finishing Oil Spray

-Facial SkincarenAcne Treatment

Bare Escentuals RareMinerals Blemish Therapy

-Anti-Aging – Mass

Olay Regenerist Micro-Sculpting Cream

-Anti-Aging – Prestige

Shiseido Cosmetics ( America ) Ltd. Bio-Performance Intensive Skin Corrective Program

-Cleanser and Scrub – Mass

Dove SkinVitalizer

-Cleanser and Scrub – Prestige

philosophy The Microdelivery Micro-massage Exfoliating Wash

-Eye Treatment – Mass

Olay Regenerist Eye Derma-Pod Anti-Aging Triple Response System

-Eye Treatment – Prestige

Estée Lauder Future Perfect Anti-Wrinkle Radiance Eye Creme

-Moisturizer – Mass

L'Oreal Paris Revitalift UV Daily Moisturizing Cream with Mexoryl SX

-Moisturizer – Prestige

Estée Lauder Hydra Bright Skin-Tone Perfecting Moisturizer

Hair & Coloring

-Hair Care and Coloring Product – Mass

Garnier Fructis Style Sleek & Shine Anti-Humidity Hairspray

-Hair Care and Coloring Product – Prestige

Frederic Fekkai Coiff Contrôle Ironless Straightening Balm


-Eye Product – Mass

CoverGirl LashBlast Mascara

-Eye Product – Prestige

Dior DiorShow Blackout Mascara

-Face Product – Mass

Almay Smart Shade® Blush and Bronzer

-Face Product – Prestige

Estée Lauder Resilience Lift Extreme Ultra Firming Makeup SPF 15

-Lip Product – Mass

L'Oréal Paris Infallible Never Fail Lipcolour

-Lip Product – Prestige

YSL Beaute Lip Twins

-Men's Skincare

Men’s Grooming

Clinique Skin Supplies for Men M Cover


-Men’s Scent

Bond No. 9 New York Andy Warhol Silver Factory

-Women’s Scent – Prestige

Marc Jacobs Fragrances Daisy Marc Jacobs

-SunSun Product – Mass

Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Dry-Touch Sunblock SPF 70

-Sun Product – Prestige

Estée Lauder Multi-Protection Sun Towelettes for Body SPF 15

I'm proud that these brands did great in the beauty business this year and I'm sure we'll still be enthralled in future.


Thursday, May 8, 2008

Concealing is Revealing

This sentence literally means “Conceal blemishes to reveal the real beauty.” Concealers have always played a vital role in makeup whether it could be for photography, films, television {serials} or anything. Now days they not only hide blemishes and dark circles but also impart luminescence to the complexion to wake the skin up.
What I love about the concealers that are available today is their textures and how effortlessly they glide on revealing true beauty.

How to choose a CONCEALER?

Concealers come in a variety of textures for a variety of skin types. They come in liquids, crèmes and potted or with a wand or in a twistable tube or like a pen etc. You name them and the beauty industry makes it available for you.

The first and foremost thing about a concealer is to find out the purpose for which we’re buying one. We could buy a concealer to hide number of things right from under eye circles and tiny blemishes to a deep and ugly looking scars, it could range from anywhere in between. With a consistency thicker than a foundation it solves a number of skin conditions and what we have is a wonderfully glowing skin.
With so many options to choose we should think of the following things while buying a concealer: -
- our budget and affordability
- quantity of product available in the container
- consistency
- purpose of using a concealer
- occasion for which the concealer is used.

To check whether we have chosen the more than perfect concealer here are a few tips: -

1. Check the color of the concealer in broad daylight as daylight is the harshest light source available but the truest.

2. You can either test it on the forearm to see whether it conceals veins or directly on the face (if hygienic conditions permit).

3.The shade of the concealer should be one shade or two shades lighter than the foundation if used or exactly the same color of the skin, while choosing one for dark circles. To hide blemishes it should nearly match the skin color and tone.

4.Preferably buy a concealer that looks yellow as it flatters almost all complexions. Concealers with pink, green, white undertones should be better left for experimentation.

5.Use opaque concealers to cover the areas that are harder to cover but do not use them unnecessarily as they look very heavy on application and might look blotchy and unnaturally hideous.

6.I prefer using a concealer after the foundation as it gets a base to sit on plus the concealer doesn’t move from the place applied which could happen if a foundation is applied on the top of a concealer. I like to seal my concealed areas with a translucent powder to make it stay longer. My preference is of a powder puff than a brush.

7.It’s important to dab on a concealer instead of rubbing and the best motion used for it is “Stippling Motion.”

8.What I love are luminizing concealers like YSL’s touché éclat that hide and yet highlight.
Sometimes in brands like Clinique and Shiseido you get duo concealers which could be mixed and matched. Try them instead of single ones as they are handier.

9.Professional makeup artists use concealer palettes but on various skin types. Its not necessary to buy those until and unless you are going to practice makeup artistry.

Note: - Concealers shouldn’t be confused with color correctors as though they might sound the same but the latter is more for professional purposes which is not the essence of this topic. And the images put here are only for displaying.

The best concealers available in the Indian Market with their pros and cons in a brief: -

+ Illuminating concealers: -
It’s the best concealer that you would see in the market and the first formulation of its type being YSL’s touché éclat. To flatter Indian complexion YSL color creators have taken the pains to create more yellow based ones for our market and so is a darker color {No.4} as well.
Similar concealers are Lancôme’s Flash Retouche, Dior skin flash radiance booster pen {which is a bit too shimmery for my tastes} and Clarins Instant Light Perfecting Touch.

+Liquid Concealers: -
They go light and smooth and provide a sheer to minimum to medium coverage depending on the formulation. In this category my heart was won by two fantastic concealers Lancôme’s Effacernes which is a waterproof under eye concealer and Dior’s Hydrating concealer which is goopy but too good. Others in this category that are my personal favorites are Shiseido The Makeup Concealer, L'Oreal Paris Tru match concealer (although only 3 shades are available in India).Pupa cosmetics make some awesome liquid concealers for people with medium budget. Some concealers come with a wand similar to the one used in glosses. Since the wands deliver a lot of product its better to take them on the back of hand first.

+Crème concealers: -
These are opaque concealers with an oil base and the best performing concealers that can actually be seen. These are used in films and television for the coverage they provide is flawless. Kryolan leads most of the concealers in this category. They appear heavy but blend smoothly though the result that is achieved is slightly heavier and opaque than its other brothers. They are available as sticks or in pans or in a lipstick casing. Oriflame concealer sticks are wonderful. They are not too pricey and do a good job.

+Concealers in tiny pots: -
These are a different variety of concealers. They very hydrating and feel fluidly even though they come in a pot which makes them different. It’s something in between an airy mousse texture and creamy opaque texture. They solve most of the problems but do not give a very heavy coverage. No companies in India have them but abroad you could check for brands like Makeup Forever and Stila who have them as their best sellers.

+Concealer Pencils: -
Actually I hate this concept because you have to sharpen the pencils all the time. Chambor cosmetics make them but they are totally not handy. Although the twist up pencils do well. They can be used to hide tiny blemishes and spots on the face. But foundations do the purpose, don’t they?

Ref: - Kevyn Aucoin

How to apply concealers?

I’d write the technique that is universal. Special concealer brushes having synthetic bristle (that are not too soft or not too hard) are available in the market. The key is to take a very small amount on the brush and apply it in the desired area and dab not rub. The heat of the fingers pushes the concealer into the skin. Other way is to use the side of a foundation brush to apply concealer and then blend it in downward and outward strokes.
Concealers are a boon to people having dark circles but I’d always advice them to get an under eye cream first. The big mistake that these women do is over applying the concealer which makes the dark circles more prominent. Creamy formulas beat over liquid ones to hide very dark under circles but if not set with powder immediately they crease in the wrinkles.
Applying an eye primer increases the longevity of the concealer, help them stay put and blend well. Just dab on some primer like MAC prep n prime for eyes to prime up that area. Avoid applying concealer over foundation on the eye lids. Apply directly because the foundation on the eye lids may slip and take the concealer along with it.
A small tip that I learnt from experts of Kryolan teaching corrective makeup for mature women is to apply the concealer directly onto the wrinkle and then dab on side ways. This fills the wrinkle and gives a much youthful appearance.
MAC makes very good concealer brushes and so does Shiseido, though the latter one is affordable. I discourage using fingers directly as it contaminates the formula and bacteria breed very easily on them. The smaller side of the makeup sponge helps in pushing the concealer and blending it in but I’d keep a sponge only to apply foundations.
I’d recommend using yellow concealers sparingly in day light and adequately in evening lights. In a place with fluorescent lights, a yellow concealer might look muddy. There’s where a pink concealer could come handy. In such situations I’d suggest applying a yellow concealer, blending it well and then applying some pink undertone based loose powder over it to considerably illuminate that area.

Makeup tutorial by an eminent artist Elke Von Freudenberg would give you a better idea on using concealers. This video is taken from Please look for some videos I saw there.

I hope this article serves you as a guide to buy concealers. Do not get carried away with brands. Buy a concealerthat looks good on you and not because the SA says so.

Hope you have a wonderful, blemish free time.


Radiant Touches with YSL Spring 2008 Collection

When it’s YSL, its all about elegance. YSL celebrates its 30 yrs of beautifying women all over the globe and this collection symbolizes the YSL style.
For the event, one of my favorite artists Val Garland conjured up a collection epitomizing a modern woman with a touch of retro elegance.

(Since it’s launched a little late in India my review is getting late too)

I have always liked YSL and worshipped their unusual style of coming up with unique products. The cosmetics are not only wonderful on the people on whom I use them but also leave us all mesmerized with the finish that we get. This collection carries on the legend. This creation celebrates love and flowers with a fresh and joyous spirit.

YSL for their Spring 2008 have launched a fantastic bouquet of cosmetics to choose from. They have: -

- Palette Pop: -

a palette inspired by one of the greeting cards Yves sent to his closest friends. It’s an assortment of colors and a confectionary of textures. The universal colors like brown, pinky beige and orange not only sculpt the face but add uniqueness to the overall ensemble.

- Pop stick blush: -

Haven’t I talked about Shiseido’s accentuating stick in my previous posts. This is its newer version. This airy light formulation glides on the skin and feels cool. Please do not misunderstand by looking at the texture. It can be only judged if you feel it. Its delicious, melting texture takes you into a whirl of freshness and colour. The exquisitely intermingled shades give the cheeks the kiss of springtime radiance and subtly shape the face. It’s a tantalizing menu of shimmering nacres as transparent and luminous as a crystal prism that can be used subtly to highlight the face with iridescent reflections. Plus a hydrogel to protect against drying and a poppy extract with softening properties.

Each pairing features two shades entwined in a spiral designed to ensure a completely natural-looking, radiant finish.

N° 1 Vanilla / Chocolate with an amber hue.

N° 2 Strawberry / Raspberry with dewy pink touch.

N° 3 Peach / Blackcurrant for a fruity coral tone .

- Eye Touch: -

I was dying to have something just like their legendary Touché Éclat concealer and my prayers were answered. Here I have Eye Touch developed on the similar lines of the legend for a subtle glamorous fodder for the eyes. The cult brush-pen instantly adorns the eyes with silky fresh, water-resistant, exceptionally smooth creamy shadow. It produces an intensely radiant finish on the eyelids with a dual smoothing effect: an optical effect with bright pearl complex and a mechanical effect with a bio-polymer composed of sweet almond proteins that are transformed into an imperceptible film. To last hours and hours and effortlessly stand up to tears and laughter, it contains volatile components that rapidly fix the colour. The brush applicator goes on easy on the eyes and its something that can find it way in the cozy corner of your bag ( yet remain in your heart….am I getting too poetic).
The array of colors include: -

N° 1 Golden Coral, a natural, glowing skin tone with bronzy mother-of-pearl highlights.

N° 2 Steel Blue, a steel blue grey illuminated with gold and white mother particles.

N° 3 Golden Jade, a pale green shot with gold.

N° 4 Glazed Brown, a perfectly matte taupe to give eyes deep intensity.

Then they have their usual stuff like

Rouge Pure Shine: 2 new shades
Golden Gloss: 2 new shades
Rouge Pure: 2 new shades
Mascara Volume Infini Curl: 1 new shade
Ombre Duo Lumière: 2 new variations

I loved the Duo Lumiere shadows especially plumy purple and shimmery pink beige which go really well on all skin types. Though they aren’t the highlights of the collection yet they demand attention.

They also have Nail Touch for nicely manicured nails.

Fantastic aren’t they??…Hope you enjoy the collection.In Mumbai it is exclusively available at Shoppers Stop in Bandra, Dynamix Mall at Juhu JVPD and supposedly at Phoenix Mills in Lower Parel.

Friday, May 2, 2008

Color Me Colorless with Colorless Intelligence

Have you felt the dust on a butterfly’s wing?
Have you seen sand sparkling over a hot desert?
Have you seen the way light plays over a sea shell or a soap bubble?

Mother Nature knows scattering light over transparent substances and above are some examples of this beautiful phenomenon. At Lancôme Laboratories, scientists worked on this phenomenon to create a very futuristic cosmetic line called L.U.C.I.
LUCI is an abbreviation for Luminous Colorless Color Intelligence, a futuristic product based on the “Photonics”, a study of light and color which happens to be a brainchild of Gucci Westman Neville, the International Artistic Director of Lancôme. The celebrated makeup artist was captivated by the beauty of sand, the iridescence of shells and the play of light on water at different beaches around the world and turned to the labs to bring her inspiration to reality. Flirty and sophisticated, this photonic technology showcases the iridescent color that is found on a butterfly’s wing.

Beauty and Technology

Iridescent color is the result of an optical phenomenon where hues of an object change color based on light interference and viewing angles. Iridescent color is not composed of pigments and is therefore sometimes called “colorless color.” Lancôme Advanced Research created a patented invention that is able to interpret particles of colorless color and incorporate them into makeup products to create “photonic” makeup.

The formula of this makeup looks white to the eye, but when applied to the skin or on top of another product, it creates a spectacular transformation. Each of the colorless color particles acts as tiny light chambers, capturing and intensely refracting light for an iridescent finish. The pure and intense halo of color that is produced reflects rose, blue, coral or green hues, enhancing lips, eyes and skin. Depending on one’s complexion, the halo of color changes; when a photonic product is placed on fair skin it transforms into an iridescent and pastel shade, while on darker skin, it becomes deep and intense. This magic varies in various lights and as a result you have a single product that can look different in different surroundings. It’s the future of makeup, isnt it?

Innovative Packaging

LUCI comes in one of the most innovative and out of the world packaging. The oyester shell like packaging that they have used for the eyeshadows in exquisite. It even has a the Lancome Rose emblem from which the shell like appearance begins.

So what has LUCI to offer Indian women?

Indian women have one of the most amazing skins in the world. The golden undertones and beautiful almond eyes that adorn indian girls enable them to carry any makeup. LUCI offers an array of colors that would flatter Indian complexions and gives them a chance to reinvent themselves. The bronze duo limited edition eyeshadow is in the list of must-haves. With LUCI, I’m sure Indian women would get a chance to re-invent themselves, a chance to see the future of makeup. The Ombre Glacee which is a liquid highlighter and eyeshadow would flatter any skin and compliment any eye shape. I’d suggest using them as highlighters on the high areas of the face to open them up. With the limited edition lipgloss one can add a new dimension to the lips and plump them up.

Mr.Stafford Braganza,Head Makeup Artist, Lancome, India

What has Stafford Branganza, Head Makeup Artist at Lancome, India got to say about the collection?

According to Stafford, LUCI is for any Indian woman who wants to explore her flamboyant side. The chic and sophisticated packaging makes it a collectible item with the colors within to die for. The best part is the utility of the product. The eyeshadows are buildable and can easily migrate from a day to an evening wear. The highlighters in the collection are simply marvelous. This magical collection brings a futuristic glamour in the world of makeup. Seeing a color from something colorless is nothing less than magic and LUCI would do full justice to it. Its a wonderful concoction of beauty and technology.

What is LUCI offering us?

Though LUCi was launched world wide, they have had certain shades launching in certain countries and India is lucky enough to get the most of them.

L.U.C.I Eyes – Light Color in Motion Eye Shadow Duo

a stunning shell-shaped eye shadow compact holds two shadows, a beautiful bronze and a photonic shade. Use the photonic shadow over the bronze color to create a unique third shade. Or use the photonic shade on its own to create a luminous look. Available in Ray of Apricot Light, Ray of Purple Light and Ray of Green Light.

Photonic – Illuminating Powder Brush Face

This glowing, translucent photonic loose powder can be used to sculpt the face or add a sheer veil of radiance. Available in Ray of Apricot Light.

Ombre Glacée – Cooling Gel Illuminator Eyes

This creamy, cooling eye shadow can be used alone or blended over another color to highlight and brighten the eye area. Apply the light texture over your eyelid and up to the brow bone or experiment by bringing it from the eye down to the cheekbone to create a beautiful aura that lights up the face. Available in Ray of Pink Light, Ray of Apricot Light and Ray of Bronze Light

Color Fever Gloss – Sensual Vibrant Lip shine

Make a statement and use the photonic gloss as a topcoat over lipstick or one of the two new shades of Color Fever Gloss to transform shades into intense, brilliant colors. Available in Seashell

Color Fever Shine – Sensual Sheer Color. Vibrant Shine.

Revamp your lips with two new lipsticks. Use the photonic shade by itself for a reflective lilac effect or place over the deep raspberry shade for a dazzling, luminous result. Available in Luminous (photonic shade),Fuschia De Nova and Desert Pink.

Traceur Design –Illuminating Long-Lasting Eyeliner Soft Brush

An eye liner with photonic lilac reflections to line the eyes and make them sparkle. Available in: Ray of Purple Light.

I got a sneak peak at the collection before it launched here and I was enthralled. Btw you would be able to buy LUCI only from the exclusive Lancôme Boutique in Saket, New Delhi. So call your friends from there or pack your bags and go there and have a glimpse. I’m sure you’ll love it.
PS: - some references are from Lancome’s official site.

Lancome Revealed

Lancome is one of the brands that strive for simplicity of makeup application and formulas for quick results. This video shows the superb techniques that have been tried and tested at Lancome Laboratories to get a magical transformation.

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Summer beauty: - BASE MAKEUP Foundations

Girls and women go paranoid over the makeup faux pas that happens during the summers. The foundation runs, powder streaks and a hideous cakey appearance rules the summer heat. At such times we tend to get scared of using anything and just leaving the skin bare. But again skin face atrocities of the sun so the dilemma still remains.
So I decided to do a post on base makeup for summer season and of course continuing it a little bit to the rainy season as well.

There is a drastic change in makeup techniques and natural skin is just the next thing. A glowing skin has always ruled the ramps but in reality it’s a mattified skin which steals the show and everything around.

I won’t be able to discuss the ways to get rid of blemishes as this is beyond the scope of this article but soon shall be writing about it.

In summer the foundation has to go sheerest, probably just a hint of color and coverage. What rule the summers are tinted moisturizers, powder foundations, mineral foundations and liquid foundations in the sheerest coverage! Cosmetic companies put in lot of research into development of advanced formulas that could mimic natural skin as far as possible. So don’t you think it’s our right to know about them?

When it comes to foundation the pricier it is the better it performs. Really. After doing a lot of market research I came to this conclusion. Brands like Lakme and Revlon would be good for those who haven’t tried something new in their life or don’t want spend on themselves. Their undertones don’t match and that’s the reason they go grey on our Indian complexions and look muddy and blotchy in photographs.

What should an ideal foundation be: - the one which gives an almost natural finish mimicking skin, disappears into the skin as if not present, matches the undertones perfectly, gives an overall flawless appearance, hides tiny blemishes on the skin, doesn’t break or slip, settles within minutes without going heavy and cakey etc. Cosmetic companies use these parameters to research new and improvised formulas.

Let’s leave the gyan behind and see what’s good this summer…

- Smashbox Backdrop Cooling Tint with SPF 15

This baby is a wonder product especially to beat the summer heat. On application as a base or just as a highlighter on any foundation it gives a magical cooling effect for 15 mins to reveal your fresher side. I used SMASHING 0 to achieve a sun kissed glow and yet feel cool and it did the work. Btw an added extra benefit is the SPF of 15. Cooling tint also comes in colors to provide a sheer coverage like a tinted moisturizer. Though this isn’t a new product yet I find it extremely handy this summer.

- Shiseido the Skincare Tinted Moisture Protection with SPF 20

It’s a boon for working women as it provides sheer color and coverage where as it acts as a sunscreen and a moisturizer. This light weight product blends like next skin and goes on fantastic. What I hated is that it comes only in 4 colors but the plus point is the sunscreen. Just a light application of loose powder and voila!

- Lancôme Aqua Fusion Tinted Moisturizer with SPF 15

I have already written about this wonderful concoction and wont get tired writing. I loved the product for its airy feel and its glides on like silk. Although its targeted for all skin types I felt unusually oily and sticky but then the key was to use a very tiny amount. Anyways I’ll keep learning from my mistakes.

- Chanel Mat Lumiere Long lasting Matte Fluid makeup with spf 15

It’s a double duty product coz as its name states; it mattifies and yet gives a luminous glow. Chanel has always been a choice for their wonderful foundations and this one had proven it right again. What I love is that a very little quantity of product goes a long way. It stays fresh for many hours without creasing or breaking or cracking and provides a luminous finish enough to make your friend jealous. Plus it comes in many shades so no injustice. It may not be a steal money wise but yet its fantastic performance wise

- MAC Cosmetics Studio fix Fluid

Are you an ardent MAC user? Are you addicted to MAC’s Studio fix powder foundation? Then you must try this baby. It’s a Studio fix fluid which gives a very beautiful matte finish. While providing a sheer to medium coverage it hides imperfections and mattifies the skin keep any shine at bay. you can use studio fix powder over it but with experience I feel that if you use the fluid then apply the powder a shade lighter than your skin color as you might tend to look dark.
You can even use MAC mineralize skin finish natural for an absolutely natural finish without suffocating your skin.

- MAC cosmetics Select Tint spf 15

Its one of the sheerest foundation this professional brand has. Its unique blend of products does wonder according to the needs of your skin and yet add flawlessness. Its feels like there’s nothing on.

- Dior HydrAction Deep Hydration Skin Tint SPF 20

This is new in the race of tinted moisturizers. I haven’t tried it but I’m sure Dior won’t fail to enchant us again.

Some other best buys would be: -
- Stila cosmetics Illuminating tinted moisturizer
- YSL’s Matt Touch
- YSL’s Teint Parfait complexion enhancer
- Lancôme Teint Idole foundation
- Max factor Miracle touch foundation that turns into powder for a unique and innovative finish.

Since tinted moisturizers are raising trends its better to opt them as the results could be experienced rather than explained.

Flawless, effortless and light weight makeup is a technique that could be mastered with right tools like foundation brushes and sponges. I hope these above mentioned products would help you make decisions without going wrong.
Please mail me your queries at

And I’ll be more than happy to answer them.



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