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Biba Fever!!

Video - 15th Apr 2011 - Views - Comments - Watch →

This is an experimental make-up session using the original (un-opened) Biba make-up from the early 70's. I had no idea what look I was going for when I started and just went with the flow. I have a huge selection of the original make-up so just put lots of shades on the make-up table and picked up various colours I felt would work as I went along. 

I chose Claudia Devlin to apply this look to, not just because she's amazing but also because I feel she really fits the Biba aesthetic and her face really inspired me. Working with these products, developed using the technology of the late 60's, was an eye opener. No crease proof, long lasting formulations for a start. Also the very high pigment levels plus no silicones means a lot more blending!! Interesting enough once the make-up was finished all it took was one quick wipe over with make-up remover and everything was completely gone...this make-up was not designed to last!

I hope you enjoy watching this little bit of make-up history come to life!

If you want to learn more about the history of makeup, have a look at my FacePaint page here X

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Beauty - Victorian Era to 1930's

Video - 12th Apr 2011 - Views - Comments - Watch →

This was the most difficult video I've ever had to edit as I had to cut out so many great anecdotes, interesting facts and amazing products. Seriously, I think I could easily have made a 10 minute film for each decade!

Anyway here is a little glimpse of my visit to the house and collection of Madeleine Marsh. I tried to stay calm and focused but inside I was bursting to get my hands on all the amazing treasures that surrounded me! The second half of this video will feature the 1940's through to the 70's and some incredible items - Mary Quant crayons, the IT palette all the cool British girls aspired to own during the war and a powder compact in the shape of a grand piano... to name just a few! Stay tuned X

Madeleines book is called The History of Compacts and Cosmetics: Beauty From Victorian Times to the Present Day and you can buy it on Amazon.

All images from the book in this video are shown with permission.

If you want to learn more about the history of makeup, have a look at my FacePaint page here X

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Vintage Make-up... I love it!

Video - 11th Apr 2011 - Views - Comments - Watch →

It's 'Vintage Make-Up Week' here on - well it's going to be more like 12 days but that doesn't sound as good!  As I say in this video I didn't want to make it a formulaic "this is how to do a Marilyn look... this is how to do a 40's lip" (I'll do that kind of thing at a later date) but more of a fun look at vintage products, make-up history and some of my personal collection favourites. There's going to be a mixture of films and blog posts including a couple of really facinating documentaries and two make-overs the likes of which I havent seen attempted before ; ) 

If you truly love make-up I think you are going to love what I've got coming up so stay tuned! 

The book War Paint, by Lindy Woodhead I mentioned in this video is available to buy on Amazon. It's a great read!

If you want to learn more about the history of makeup, have a look at my FacePaint page here X

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Some High Street/Drugstore Make-up Favourites

Many people have asked me what are the high street make-up products I personally think are good. I thought the best place to look would be my pro kit as I expect a high level of quality, technology and pigments from all the items in there. 

Each product I've chosen to mention is here for a different reason. Some have impressed me with their fantastic shades, more expected of a premium or pro brand. Others are here because the quality or colour range is exceptional for the very reasonable price and a couple utilise the very latest technology, in keeping with the most expensive brands around.

All in all i'd be happy to use any of these products on an A-list client and i cant say fairer than that! x

What I wore to No.10

Blog - 30th Mar 2011 - Comments 110 - Read →

I dont usually post about clothes and what I'm wearing but I had so many requests to post a picture of what I wore to visit 10 Downing Street last night that I thought I would.

I was invited to Downing Street by Samantha Cameron for a function in aid of the sparkle appeal. There were lots of really interesting people there. I especially enjoyed hanging out with uber talented photographer Tim Walker, writer of the moment David Nicholls (author of the highly acclaimed 'One Day') and fashion designer Osman (who dresses Sam Cam).

We all had a really good nose around the famous dining, drawing and cabinet rooms (all so familiar from news reports and documentaries I've seen over the years) and the grand staircase who's walls carry the portraits of every prime minister who has lived there. We got chatting to one of the staff who's been working there for 25 years who told us lots of extra interesting bits of gossip and pointed out some of the changes the various PM's have made to the house - all very interesting but I don't thing I can say anything about that!

As the name of the charity was sparkle I thought I'd shun the more traditional attire for a visit to such a serious address by choosing something very bright and British high street. I chose this French Connection neon coral/pink dress, chiffon with a vintage feel. The quality of these pics isnt great and the true brightness is a little lost. Everyone was in black or navy so i did stand out like a sore thumb it has to be said!

I calmed things down with a pair of black Miu Miu patent leather peep toe shoes and a black chiffon belt by Vionnet tied in a simple bow. To give the whole thing a twist I teamed it with my current favourite bag, the Chanel crocheted cream number which is decorated with bright red poppies and blue forget-me-nots (this bag appears to be a favourite of Sarah Jessica Parkers at the moment too!).

I also took a Chanel jacket to wear afterwards, a classic black and red tweed with a sequins all over the black knit which you only notice when they catch the light.

Three of the pupils Jamie, Lauren and a little girl called Sophie who attend the charity's school for disabled children were also there and did a brilliant job of inspiring everyone with their achievements. Little Sophie was obviously taking her fashion (especially on the bag front) very seriously as she was working a fierce, red patent, quilted number with gilt chain shoulder strap which we bonded over immediately!

Beauty-wise I went easy on the hair and make-up (there was already an awful lot going on with the dress colour and fancy bag!). On my lips I did a smidgen of Revlons Matte Lipstick in Strawberry Suede as a stain with lip balm on top, which did a good job of picking up the tone of the dress. The lashes, once mascara was on and since my lash lift, were already 'all singing & dancing' so I skipped the shadow and just groomed my brows. I had to apply a fake tan tint to my legs, not so much to make them look tanned (not really my thing) but to take the luminous bright white down a notch and ensure no-one was blinded! I used my current favourite product  for this purpose, Xen-Tans wash off gel. I finished things off with my favourite bright orangey/red nail polish..Mistress by Ciate.

When we came out I asked my best friend Sophia to take a picture of me with her phone outside the front door (below). Laughing away we failed to notice in the darkness that the worlds press were filming the door from across the street as they waited for the outcome of the Libyan crises talks. So hopefully I'm not going to see myself poncing around in the background of a CNN report anytime soon - highly embarrassing!

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Lash Lift Treatment

Video - 28th Mar 2011 - Views - Comments - Watch →

I am obsessed with curling my eyelashes! Even if I don’t put on any make up, I have to get my eyelashes curlers out to look and feel awake. I really do believe that having curled lashes is one of the quickest ways to brighten and lift your entire face. When I heard about the latest technology in lash enhancement, the ‘LVL’ (length, volume and lift) developed by Karen Betts , I could barely contain myself!

I’d had a an eyelash perm many years ago and not been pleased with the results as traditional lash perms use rollers which make the lashes curl round and back on themselves. In my case this made my lashes look shorter! The LVL differs because it lifts and straightens your lashes from the roots up so they appear much longer. The other thing that appeals to me is that there isn’t any upkeep… you don’t need to keep going back (really important with my schedule!).

Having sent many women to have this treatment done I finally decided it was my turn. Have a look at the procedure itself and the frankly, gobsmacking results in this short video.

I think that this treatment would be perfect for anyone who has incredibly straight lashes, who just can’t get a lift to hold when using eyelash curlers, for hooded or mature lids or for summer holidays (lots of swimming and still your eyelashes look amazing!). Even if you just want to appear more alert and wide awake without using eyelash curlers and mascara every morning, you will love the LVL. The treatment takes just 45 minutes, but the results can last up to 8 weeks, depending on the length and quality of your own lashes.

At the moment, there are over 700 trained LVL technicians in the UK. If you want to find your nearest LVL technician, you can go onto the site and pop your postcode into the salon finder. Prices range from around £45 to £95 depending on your location (it's £95 at the Harley Street W1 clinic that I visitied).

For ladies outside the UK, LVL only have a distributor in Colombia at the moment, but I’m sure it won’t be long until you can have this treatment in other countries.

If you’d love to become a LVL technician, or want to introduce this fabulous treatment into your own salon, have a look at the LVL-Lashes website or email love(at) or call 0845 644 3994 for more information. 

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Making it in Make Up: First Step to Success

Video - 25th Mar 2011 - Views - Comments - Watch →

This video is for those of you interested in a full time career as a successful professional make-up artist. So many have written to me asking for advice but mostly they don't say what type of make-up artist they would like to be or they say they want to do films, TV and fashion. This is my take on the very first thing you need to consider when thinking about a career and is based on my own experiences. Sorry it's so long (I had a lot to say!) but hopefully it's helpful to all of you that asked for advice.

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