Leighton Denny The Power of Lipstick

Fresh off the back of yet another beauty industry award, the Leighton Denny duo Lipsticks are making more waves for the company and showing makeup in its true light. Bringing the luxury and technology of his nail tech background into the realms of cosmetics with a lipstick collection that gives an additional string to an already astonishingly talented bow. With a range of color that will make you melt, the LD collection lipsticks are beautifully designed and crafted to work with both the consumer’s needs and that of the professional. hardly a surprise given the talent behind the brand, the LD lip collection is a perfect fit for the brand its ethos.

LD lipstick duo

Lip Dual is a clever 'two in one', dual-ended lip system that contains a long-lasting stain at one end and a creamy, rich, luxe lipstick at the other. Rich in antioxidants and ceramide-like ingredients the lipstick is comfortable to wear, intensely moisturizing and reassuringly long-wearing thanks to the special blend of waxes which prevents the color from melting or bleeding. At the other end a magnetic-like lip "stain", with special polymers to affix the colour to the lips, leaving a weightless, long-lasting finish.

Available in eight killer shades you can stain it, layer it, tone it up or tone it down and wear your color your way, every day! From striking and seductive chocolate to deep red, there is something to suit everyone.

To learn more about the LD range see:

LD Boutique website.

LD Boutique Facebook.

LD Boutique Instagram.

LD Boutique Twitter.

Fashion Week Beauty Staples for Italian Girl Style

As any fashionista will tell you, fashion week no matter the city is frantic and you need to be on the top of your game when it comes to your look and style, your makeup has to stay put for a day as your run from one catwalk to the next, show to show. The team at Beauty Made in Italy are one step ahead and have come up with some fantastic must haves for the shows and day to day life as you flit around town. After all isn’t life one big catwalk?

fashion week with beauty made in Italy

Herbatint's Flash Fashion colour range for fun, vibrant hair colour. Offering the brightest reds, deepest purples and funkiest mango colours, Herbatint's Flash Fashion Series gives you the power to personalise your hair colour and keep up with this year's hottest trends! Retail price: $18.99. Available now at usa.herbatint.com.

Before heading out to the shows, make sure your skin is prepped with Skin&Co Roma's Truffle Therapy Face Toner. Infused with their signature Black Winter Truffle, this toner deeply cleanses and purifies pores with the antiseptic power of witch hazel and sage, effectively removing impurities to treat, heal and prevent blemishes. Retail price: $30. Available now at skinandcoroma.com.

Keep your makeup looking fresh and lock in all day coverage with Ripar's Setting Spray. This lightweight and non-sticky mist is formulated with soothing and refreshing ingredients to ensure your makeup stays in place even under those harsh runway lights! A favourite of makeup professionals and performers, Ripar's Setting Spray can be used to set your makeup in the morning or to provide a refreshing boost throughout the day. Retail price: $33. Available now at ripar.us. Nourish your skin while on-the-go with Carthusia's Mediterraneo Hand Cream. Gently scented with their best selling fragrance this hand cream is a daily indulgence and perfect for dry or chapped hands. Retail price: $20. Available now at bigelowchemists.com.

To learn more about the Beauty Made in Italy Program see their website: https://beautymadeinitaly.com/

HOD TV and The Lost Concept

When we started the Lost Project we had a very definitive vision in mind. That still stands but we are going adding to that narrative and building something bigger alongside our partners with plans in motion to expand on the creative process we have alongside the narrative we have currently running.

HOD TV and The Lost Concept

Our plan has always been to go down the production route creating TV and Film projects under the Lost banner. The Lost Project is still at the heart of this and we are now building something more in the background with The Lost Creatives being our collective name for the team members.

HOD TV when we found out about it, was an ideal fit for the biggest part of our vision. We all love Horror, thriller and dark movies. The creative process for this type of project is something we are all passionate about and finding that the team behind the HOD TV concept were focusing on this we immediately opened up a dialogue with them and we are now partners to the service (and very proud of it).

Over the course of September we will be launching our new site for Lost Creatives and revealing more of our plans for the future which will include: short films for the festival circuit to advance our company name, TV series, a feature film. We will of course be making full use of the Amazing brands and companies who have supported us to date such as Oh My Lash and brushwork cosmetics (promo code JamesC) . Stay tuned for more of the brands we use in our work and new names you need to look at…..

Additionally, we are planning to add more to our out of the box kit including Titanic FX brushes and some of the hurt boxes by Brian Kinney to augment our character alongside premade pieces from Buy and Apply (Aka Nimba Creations).

*We will be working to support British brands as much as we can no matter where we decide to shoot our projects.

To learn more about The Lost Creatives see The Lost Creatives Facebook Page. For more information on the HOD team and what they offer see the HOD TV Website.

Little Soap Company Naturals Collection an ASDA Exclusive

The award-winning Little Soap Company has created an exclusive new collection for Asda. In a fantastic move for both companies this exclusive collection opens up the door to new customers to have this range in their home at an affordable and easily accessible price in one of the UK’s biggest supermarket chains.

zest lemon

“Founded by Emma Heathcote-James, this British company has been disrupting the soaps market for over ten years, pushing the boundaries by becoming the first organic soap to hit the supermarkets, bringing cruelty free and sustainable products to the high street at affordable prices - free from detergents, SLS, sulphates, alcohol, parabens, sorbates, silicones, synthetic preservatives - and with the naturally occurring glycerin locked in the bar it is super moisturising, putting a stop to all the elements that have given soap a bad rap. And not only are they great for the sink, bath or shower.”

Asda who are ticking several Eco-boxes with this brand new commissioned collection. The Naturals Collection of four liquid and four matching bar soaps is the only vegan, plant based, sustainable, free from, synthetic free (fragrances only with pure essential oils), totally natural soaps on Asda's shelves. Now even your sink can boast super stylish, super Eco products with recyclable wrappers and bottles.

Designed to be consumer friendly and widely available, the award-winning Little Soap company has all the hallmarks of a household staple with that extra edge of being cruelty free, organic AND with Asda coming on board a widely available and affordable luxury for your home.

*Pro tip for gents, the Little soap company soaps make great travelling items for their multi use elements you can wash, shave and spot wash all in one making it a great travel “companion.”

To learn more about this range and stockists see:

The Little Soap Company Website

Asda Stores Website

A New Chapter is Being Written With The Lost Creatives

A New Chapter is Being Written With The Lost Creatives site being built and new work in development for the film and Internet TV sector. We love the direction that The Lost Project is taking as we become a go to for beauty writing with a series of PR agents across the UK and USA coming to the table looking for additional support.

the lost creatives

Over the month of September we will be shooting new content for both sites and making sure that all the I’s are dotted and T’s are crossed.

It is really exciting to be moving in this direction and we have already got our main social accounts up and running:

The Lost Creatives Facebook.

The Lost Creatives Instagram.

The Lost Creatives Twitter.

With a whole new set of goals and plans in motion it is a really exciting time and we do have the support of our various oversea’s contacts (including writers, distributors and actors) who are eager to be a part of the momentum we are creating and are ready to support us. Which is hugely gratifying.

To stay up to date with all the news and updates see our social accounts listed above.

Fight Acne and Skin Flare-Ups with Kyushi Kindness

Designed to augment your skin care routine and as a oil based treatment system the Kyushi range is a welcome development for those with problem skin or who are prone to flare ups, adding a touch of Eastern culture to your routine. Known throughout the world for their innovations in the beauty market, Eastern medicines and skincare Kyushi (pronounced Key you see) takes all the benefits of the East and brings it to the west thanks to makeup artist Alice Moore who’s gender free skincare line is already making waves in the market of treatment based skincare.

“Kyūshi – Is a Japanese word meaning ‘pause’. Its deeper meaning is influenced by the Japanese culture of focusing on one action at a time and giving it your absolute full attention, Kyūshi establishes a ritual, a moment of peace in a world of chaos.”

For many people when their skin is going through a rough patch, whether that's acne, congestion or inflammation, the first response is to go on the "attack" with harsh scrubs, drying products and chemical spot creams. However, this can aggravate the skin and damage the barrier function, worsening the issue. It may seem counterproductive, but the best way to fight acne and skin flare-ups is with...kindness.

Kyushi Face Oil Duo Set

Kyushi Chamomile & Helichrysum (30ml - £39) is a calming, soothing and reparative facial oil blend that benefits both the skin and mind, working to nourish and hydrate the skin, whilst reducing inflammation and easing irritation from skin flare ups including acne, rosacea and eczema.

  • Anti-inflammatory German Chamomile essential oil works to soothe inflamed, irritated, red skin whilst anti-microbial essential oil Helichrysum helps to regenerate collagen whilst stimulating new tissue growth

  • 100% pure olive Squalane oil imitates the skin's natural sebum to deeply nourish, moisturise, restore elasticity and boost cell regeneration

  • Meadowfoam oil is high in antioxidants and reinforces the skin's barrier to help lock in moisture and slow down trans-epidermal water loss

  • Power antioxidant Vitamin E helps fight free radical damage and encourage healthy cell growth

  • Bergamot and Neroli essential oils work to improve pigmentation and scarring, whilst essential oil of anti-inflammatory Frankincense heals damaged tissue

  • Balancing essential oil of Orange helps to lower stress levels which are often heightened when we're anxious about our skin

  • use in the morning, at night or whenever you're struggling skin needs a helping hand

To learn more about the range see:

Kyushi Website

Kyushi Instagram

Safeguarding Your Skin For Winter with Jane Scrivner

One of the leading lights of the skincare realm, Jane Scrivner has travelled the globe as a skincare trainer and brand ambassador, leading to the development of the award winning, professional ranges of organic skincare available today. Taking this a step further she has collated a selection of products designed to take you from the warm summer days to the cooler winter with ease.

"As Summer comes to an end and the cooler autumnal weather creeps in it's easy for people to neglect their skincare regime until the harsh winter weather has them reaching for their rich, comforting oils and creams. But prevention is always better than cure and skin improvements don't happen overnight. Now is the time to start safeguarding your skin so it can stand strong in the face of the coming winter season. Think of it as your winter skinvestment!”

Skinfoliate

Exfoliate with Jane Scrivner Skinfoliate -£26/150ml

  • gently slough away a season long build-up of dead, dull skin cells with this 100% natural and organic blend of AHA & BHA acids

  • phyto origin malic, lactic, salicylic, citric, tartaric and glycolic acids work on every level of skin exfoliation and stimulation for a clearer, fresher, smoother, brighter complexion

  • formulated with English raw, organic apple cider vinegar with Mother ferment keeps skin's natural flora intact

  • this blend works to stimulate cell renewal, boost collagen and elastin synthesis, decongest and clear skin and reconfigure skin's natural acid mantle to the ideal pH

Repair Restore Facial Oil

Replenish with Jane Scrivner Intense Oil - £25/30ml

  • formulated with 100% Organic C02 Critical Extract of Chilean Rosehip Oil, a potent, fortifying treatment oil with amazing reparation and regeneration properties, often used to treat post-operative scarring so imagine what it could do for your fine lines and wrinkles, pigmentation, sun damage and dry skin.

  • rich in linoleic acid thanks to the heavy-duty Omega's 3 and 6 which work to plump, smooth and moisturise the skin.

  • also rich in vitamins E, C, and Beta Carotene - an excellent source of trans retinoic acid, a natural form of Vitamin A, to encourage cell turnover and reparation

OO Cream

Protect & Moisturise with Jane Scrivner OO Cream - £27/50ml

  • this golden orange moisturiser acts like an overall for your skin

  • formulated with Critical Rosehip Extract rich in Essential Fatty Acid's, calming and protective Argan Oil and Vitamin E to hydrate and nourish the skin and to replenish barrier function

  • the Beta-Glucan rich Colloidal Oatmeal forms a slightly mattifying, tissue fine barrier on the skins surface, which acts like a protective coat for your skin, fortifying your barrier function, locking in the nutrients from your skincare and preventing TEWL (Trans Epidermal Water Loss)

  • apply after your facial oil all over your face, neck and décolleté to keep skin smooth, protected, hydrated, healthy and radiant.

To learn more about the Jane Scrivner range see:

Jane Scrivner Website

Jane Scrivner Instagram

Jane Scrivner Facebook

Jane Scrivner Twitter

Oh My Lash Tray Launch

oh my lash trays

Something my private clients rave about is the fact I use Oh My lash faux mink lashes and how beautiful they are when working beauty makeup. So when I found out that they were launching the lash trays I was absolutely intrigued and as always with this line I was not disappointed.

These synthetic lashes are set to be a new classic for the bridal and beauty sector especially those who want to be able to offer lash services and with clients who just want a little touch added these are perfect.

With the C curl and D curl lashes they are beautifully structured and add a touch of elegance to a look I can see this being a big seller for the lash technicians out there who want something with a strong ethical background and cost effective for their clients.

Oh My Lash, since its beginning has been about bringing a quality product to the market and as a makeup artist myself, I fully endorse the range and will definitely be adding more soon.

Its a strange thing, whenever I do a private client I end up using one set and having the client fawn over the other options (and giving them an extra pair), this addition of the lash trays will be a massive boost for my working kit, and I will be able to offer more lash treatments to my clients alongside their glamorous sister lashes which are already a staple of my work outside the fashion and media sector.

A perfect addition to any dressing table or a working artist kit, from the bridal sector to fashion and media, Oh My Lash is a perfect add on to your work and the new lash trays are the icing on the cake to what is an amazing British brand.

To learn more about Oh My Lash see:

Oh My Lash Website

Oh My Lash Instagram

Oh My Lash Facebook

LD Boutique by Leighton Denny MBE

Leighton Denny (MBE) is the ultimate beauty success story, his international reputation for nails has brought him and the nail industry into the mainstream in a way that is beyond comprehension and owes a lot to his humble roots and overall demeanour.

Going from being a fork life driver to founding the multi million pound beauty and nail expert shows the grit and determination of a man who’s talents go above and beyond that of a nail tech into the realms of business giant. From the award winning crystal nail file and fragrance (sold worldwide to a point where it could fill an Olympic swimming pool), Leighton has become the go to guru for all things beauty.

LD Boutique by Leighton Denny MBE

LD Boutique by Leighton Denny MBE

With four key areas of his business, it is no surprise to see that the LD boutique range is a global phenomenon. Starting with the nail varnishes through to the self tanning range it is a company that has sent beauty over the edge and created its own standard and a benchmark for the art form.

"Leighton Denny Expert Nails is where it all began, and we still have the same award-winning polish formula that we launched in 2005. It's stood the test of time! From hand creams and cuticle oils to gel polishes and pedicure sets LDEN will always deliver. My iconic Crystal Nail File has won its 15th industry award and is the key to a salon finish."

"Sun Believable is a 'no gimmicks' tanning range that's moisturising, kind to the skin and delivers a healthy looking, multi-dimensional, long lasting tan. And there's something for everyone! From the antioxidant instant tan BRONZE Me (£16/200ml), to the deep, overnight tanning mousse TAN Me (£25/300ml) to the natural tan accelerator ACCELERATE Me(£20/200ml)."

"Lip Dual (£12.50) allows you to create a matte, natural, bold or sheer lip colour, all with one product. The dual ended lip system holds a rich and luxurious lipstick at one end and a magnetic-like lip "stain" on the other so you can stain it, layer it, tone it up or tone it down and wear your colour your way, every day!"

"There are four unique and intoxicating fragrances in my LIGHT & DARK- two female (Original and Delightful) and two unisex (Lively and Desire) fragrances, you can find a perfect scent for your mood. I designed each LIGHT & DARK fragrance, so they blend seamlessly with each other, so you can wear alone for an intriguing scent or layered together for your own personal fragrance cocktail. My LIGHT & DARK Discovery Collection (£38) is the perfect way to test and trial the collection and create your signature scent."

A company to watch, the Leighton Denny range is growing in the beauty market and as a household name is second to none in its innovations and standards.

To learn more about the range see:

LD Boutique by Leighton Denny Website

LD Boutique by Leighton Denny Instagram

LD Boutique by Leighton Denny Twitter

Madame La La Bronzing Ball

The Madam La La Bronzing Ball is a quirky little product with a lot of punch. Designed to work with a wide range of skin tones it is the kind of quick fix that is a must have multi purpose product that will change your makeup and tanning game.

On first inspection we see a small pot with a clear lid revealing a warm, golden toned cream that is aesthetically pleasing. Taking off the lid we are greeted with the light perfume of coconut, strong enough to be noticed but not overpowering it does make you think tropical climes which given the tanning properties is an appropriate and welcome touch that makes the Bronzing Ball a definite must for fast and easy tanning with a touch of the tropics.

Madame La La Bronzing Ball

Madame La La Bronzing Ball

“Bronzing Ball is a 180°colour cosmetics twist-up cream bronzer for a precise glide on instant bronze – no makeup brushes needed! Bronzing Ball achieves an easy year round bronzed glow in effortless strokes – one shade suits all. Infused with Vitamin E & Coco Water hydrating properties the luminous and glimmering shade with a 180° dome applicator is easy to use for bronzing, contouring and highlighting the cheeks, lips and eyes.”

Testing the product is easy, the ball shape allows you to swipe the colour directly onto the skin with ease and it blends smoothly creating a warm even tan where applied. Minimal fuss and maximum impact when you build the colour up through layering.

*This would be a great addition to a working kit for fashion artists or anyone in the wedding sector.

From a media artist perspective this is a great little item to slip into a working kit for shoots where a touch of bronze is required or you are working TV/film/fashion projects it can be a major plus for the continuity side, quickly touching up a tan on a shoot or sculpting a models face with a few swipes of this beautiful cream verses heavy powders or ashy creams, adding depth and warmth to the face without hassle. A welcome addition to the beauty world the company deserves plaudits and applause for their innovative beauty and tanning line.

To learn more about the brand or the full range of products see:

Madame La La Website

Madame La La Instagram

Madame La La Facebook

Madame La La Twitter

Ariane Pool Makeup Through the Seasons

Ariane Pool has over the course of her 40 plus year career has become a leading light in the professional sector and was part of a handful of artists who changed the face of makeup and has given both consumers and professionals in the business a range of cosmetics that has become synonymous with celebrities and bridal. An in demand makeup artist herself and known for her calm, collected approach to cosmetics especially when dealing with the white glove service of weddings Ariane Pool is an artist and cosmetics creator who has become a household name for good reason.

One of the keys to this is her ability to work with the clients and create what has been termed the transitional collection. As the weather is so often changeable and undecided (especially in the UK) she decided to give us a set of key components that will make your beauty life that little bit simpler.

Ariane Pool Concealer Palette

Ariane Pool Concealer Palette

Starting with the concealer palette, The creamy formula is soft enough to work underneath the eyes but dries down to demi-matte finish, concealing blemishes and high colouring beautifully. A must have for your beauty space or kit as it allows you to customise your look as and when you require with the minimum of hassle.

Ariane Pool Waterproof Lash Coat

Ariane Pool Waterproof Lash Coat

Waterproofing your lashes is a must regardless of the time of year and this clever innovation of the transparent topper will transform any mascara into a waterproof formula that can withstand water, rain, sweat and tears. Simply sweep over your normal mascara, for lashes that won't budge.

And finally, the blush and bronze With a pigmented sheer blush on one side and a satin golden bronze on the other, this duo allows you to sculpt, contour, highlight and blush, all at once. Use the blusher alone for a fresh summer flush, mix the two together for a warmer autumnal shade or use the bronzer alone to sculpt and contour your complexion.

Ariane Pool Blush and Bronze Duo

Ariane Pool Blush and Bronze Duo

Taking your makeup to the next level with smart placement and transitional products that will see you throughout the year without hassle, Ariane Pool is the artist to look to for smart makeup. To learn more about the range see:

Ariane Pool Website

Ariane Pool Instagram

Ariane Pool Facebook

Ariane Pool YouTube

Ariane Pool Twitter

Time Bomb The Tech Neck Troubleshooter

In an age where mobile phones and other tech have taken over our lives the team at Time Bomb noticed a change, not only how we view the world but how it was affecting our bodies and in some cases creating and increasing tell tale signs of ageing such as lines, wrinkles and slackened skin in the neck and chest area thanks to the constant downward slope as we check our phones and of course the natural pull of gravity.

Designed to tackle signs of ageing that can be prevalent in the neck and jaw line area, Time Bomb tech neck trouble shooter, is a company that works hard to give the best possible treatments to the market and their range has been hitting high marks for some time for example the Time Bomb Tech Neck Trouble Shooter Cream:

“A multi award-winning, rich, velvety cream is formulated with Lanachrys©,usually found in cellulite treatments - which breaks down excess fatty deposits and tones the skin, crucial to improve the appearance of jowls and turkey neck.”

The tech neck cream is designed to help address these serious tell-tale signs and beat 'tech neck' with a targeted, intensive treatment that zones in on the issue that may cause or exaggerate signs of ageing caused by both technology and gravity (the perils of the mobile world are many).

  • The deeply moisturising formula also contains skin protecting pea extract to prevent creping of the skin and preserve and aid the production of collagen and elastin, maintaining skin's firmness and elasticity and delivering an instant uplifting boost.

  • Chrysanthellum and white truffle extract further firm and smooth the skin to combat troublesome sagging and wrinkles whilst a special 9-amino based peptide, rumex occidentalis extract andvitamin C help inhibit pigmentation, diminish the appearance of age spots and make complexion look more even.

Massage into the skin morning and night for supple, firm, even-toned skin that doesn't give away your age.

To learn more about the Time Bomb range see:

The Time Bomb UK Website

The Time Bomb Instagram

The Time Bomb Facebook

The Time Bomb Twitter

Lola Chubby Cream Lipstick Pencil

I haven’t written about Lola makeup for a while and when I spotted the new chubby cream lipstick pencil I knew it was long overdue that I did, after all, they are a major part of my kit essentials for my private and media/fashion clients. Which I will touch on in this piece.

With 4 shades available, the colours are what I would term staples of a working kit or in a broader sense “wearable” colours that most people will reach for, something Lola makeup is incredibly good. Yes they are a staple of the professional fashion arena in Europe (sponsor of Spain’s next top model and the former UK top model), they have become somewhat of a go to brand for the bridal sector as well with their formulations, colour spectrum and of course fashion credentials being top amongst the reasons.

The major advantages of the new lipstick pencil (as outlined below) are all hall marks of the company who pride themselves on their cruelty free and vegan status.

Characteristics

Lola chubby cream lipstick pencil

Lola chubby cream lipstick pencil

  • Suitable for all skin types and tones

  • Buildable coverage

  • Creamy texture

  • Glossy shine

  • Comfortable to wear

  • Titanium Dioxide free

  • Paraben free

  • Cruelty free

  • 100% Vegan

Benefits

  • Vitamin Enriched

  • Moisturising

  • Conditioning

Known for their fashion forward cosmetics line they are as mentioned, a bridal makeup standard, working with a variety of high end bridal shows and becoming the go to makeup line for this market. As someone who appreciates and values a good lipstick pencil for its ease of use, as a professional they can be slipped easily into a set bag for quick touch ups without the mess and hassle, although if I do use a lipstick you can guess who’s lip brush is the one sitting in my kit for touch ups especially when I apply liquid lipstick I like the precision of the two options that Lola presents.

*On a side note Lola does have one of the best lip brushes I have ever used and their colourless universal powder is one of my top 5 products.

Base of Sweden Goes International

I know we would not normally do this but the news was to good not to share as Base of Sweden goes international, thats correct the company who’s innovative foundation and cleanser is making waves in Europe is now available for international delivery through their website.

Designed to be professional friendly, the foundation and remover has become a media sensation in its native Sweden and captured the attention of artists across the board with fans both industry and consumer praising its formulation and company ethos.

“The Base is not like other foundations and therefore it does not feel like other foundations. It is moist on your skin all day long and lasts up to 72 hours. It is also waterproof, which allows you to wash your face, swim and exercise in it without it coming off. Once it does come off, the Base fades away gradually rather than falls off.”

An absolute game changer this foundation is perfect for all aspects of the makeup artist kit from the media and theatre where longevity, sweat proof and waterproof is a must to the bridal sector where demand for long stay makeup that doesn’t clog the skin is chief amongst the coveted and sought after solutions for brides and the wedding party. Stepping to the plate with this range was a bold move and it is one that is receiving notice with Base of Sweden Already garnering industry innovation awards for foundation alongside the press and blogger accolades it deserves.

To learn more about the range or to purchase see:

Base of Sweden Website

Base of Sweden Instagram

Base of Sweden Facebook

*The YouTube channel for Base of Sweden is a must see and save for the savvy artist who wants to learn.

Summer in a Bottle with Beauty Made in Italy

Do you want to travel without leaving the comfort of your own home? Well your in luck, the team at Beauty made in Italy have come up trumps with some of the most beautiful scents that will transport you to the Italian Riviera without the need for a passport. The latest collection of fragrance has all the hallmarks we have come to expect from Italian style and will bring out your inner traveller.

Acca Kappa Tilia Cordata

Acca Kappa's Tilia Cordata Parfum is a floral citrus fragrance with notes of bergamot, lemon and jasmine that will instantly transport you to Italy's Mediterranean valleys and Venetian gardens. Available at accakappa.us. Retail price: $88.

Mediterraneo Eau de Parfum

Carthusia's best selling fragrance, Mediterraneo is THE quintessential scent of summer. Blending the freshness of lemon leaves with sparkling tones of green tea, Mediterraneo is Capri in a bottle! Available at bigelowchemists.com. Retail price: $80.

jusbox cheeky smile

Inspired by late nights and discotheque, Jusbox's new fragrance Cheeky Smile will keep you dancing until sunrise. The bottle is finished in a special varnish that appears light grey in daylight and turns into a vibrant, acid-green color when seen under ultraviolet light. Retail price: $210. Available at 10 Corso Como NYC and jusboxperfumes.com.

proraso cologne wipes

Proraso offers men an innovative and convenient way to wear fragrance on-the-go with their Azur Lime Refreshing Cologne Wipes. The single-use sachets are the ideal finishing touch, offering freshness anytime, anywhere with a fresh citrus, energetic mint and juniper scent. Available at bigelowchemists.com. Retail price: $10 for pack of six wipes.

'Beauty Made in Italy' is a program launched by the Italian Government to promote the awareness, availability and excellence of Italian beauty brands to the US market.

Shining Boy BB Cream

Shining boy is a brand I found by sheer chance and it falls into that category of quirky and outwith my norm for male grooming but this does not detract from the company in any shape or form. While many say that makeup is universal there is still a degree of stigma attached to men buying makeup that they are working to take away with their quirky concepts.

shining boy makeup.jpg

For those taking their first steps into the world of makeup as a boy/man or just looking for something that will be quick, simple and easy to use then a BB cream is generally a good starting point. With the Shining boy BB cream, its targeted specifically at men and boys with a view to making clean skin a quicker process and creates a gateway to experimentation with the wider range of their cosmetics (in particular the eye shadow palettes).

The silver tone of the packaging and overall feel is standard and would not look out of place in a gym bag as it resembles a moisturiser or a post shave balm. The actual product has all the hallmarks of a premium BB cream (BB standing for Beauty balm) in that it offers an all encompassing product with skincare, concealer and light coverage that will in essence give the skin a fresh, rested look. Available in two shades of light and wheatish (medium/tan). Like many BB creams it is still advisable to use a powder to set although it is relatively long wearing depending on your own skin type and texture. The ingredients overall do have all the qualities I would expect and the added bonus of being waterproof making it an ideal addition to a summer regime.

The rest of the shining boy range is more about fun and experimentation with vibrant colour palettes and a more whimsical sense of playfulness but it is the BB cream that does stand out in the range from a grooming perspective as its designed to be easy to use and stands as a reminder that grooming (in the social media age) is an important factor for the well dressed gent or artistically minded soul who wants to be seen in the best possible light.

To learn more about the company see:

Shining Boy Website

Shining Boy Instagram

Shining Boy Facebook

*A quick google search on the Shining Boy brand is enlightening and offers an interesting perspective on the range but in all honesty it doesn’t detract from the company for me it just allows a little insight into the company and the nearest competitors in terms of look and ingredients (not to mention pricing)

Hard Candy By Stewart Nicol Soutar

Intentional or not there is something about the painting Hard Candy by Stewart Nicol Soutar, that makes me think of my childhood and everything candy coated and sweet yet still has a little of the edge I have come to expect from the artist himself.

Yes, the title itself does imbue a sense of the nostalgic, it does go a little deeper in the usual abstract sense that only Stewart Nicol Soutar seems to be able to do and gives a depth of something dystopic whilst maintaining that nostalgic edge in the same breath, a neat trick that I have yet to see another artist pull off with the same degree of aplomb.

Hard Candy' - (A Pokey o' Cut Roak, Easter 1960). Oil on canvas. 50" x 60",

Hard Candy' - (A Pokey o' Cut Roak, Easter 1960). Oil on canvas. 50" x 60",

The painting itself conjures up images of my childhood with the “poke a sweets” or “a 10 pence mix up”, the white paper bags so often thin tantalised, hinting at a secret inside, did you get your favourites? Or was it a random mix, something new to taste? The specks of colour hinting at the delectable treats inside, the twisted edges holding closed the bag till you could get outside the shop and delve into its delights.

The background reminiscent of the box, a standard of the local newsagent or sweet shop was the box of “mix ups”, so often filled to the brim with these paper bags the image in and of itself sets your taste buds into motion like a Pavlovian dog anticipating a treat.

Somewhat darker (and perhaps more personal) is the lower edge of the bag, yes the sharp edges curled up are exact replicas of the childhood treat but also hinting at something more sinister, sharp teeth waiting to devour perhaps, a touch of the darkness in my own mind or that of the artist its open to the interpretation of the viewer, which is how it should be when viewing art.

With an overall sense of mystery I err on the side of nostalgia for my youth in what could be seen as a departure form his usual darker social commentary, it is still an insight into both (my own mind) and the artist, perhaps longing for a youth that is at the heart of us all and a testament to the Stewart Nicol Soutar that it opens your eyes to what is either a youthful reminiscence or something darker, a message, a sigh for long lost whims and hopes that were simpler or a sinister message to the unfortunate children who view it: what is now a pleasurable escape and sweet moment is really a trick and that those sharp callous teeth are waiting to bite.

For me, the overall theme of the painting is truly open to interpretation but ultimately has all the hallmarks of a nostalgic, wistful trip down memory lane and I intend to stick to my gut instinct and hold true to the memories it brings up, and let (you) the viewer decide its nature.

To learn more about the artist see the:

Stewart Nicol Soutar art website.

Explaining the Lost Boys

The Lost Boys as a concept has a dark heart, its a patchwork of different aspects from the darker side of the Peter Pan story to the current social and political atmosphere where we see people such as Milo Yiannopoulos who has talked openly about the disenfranchisement of young men over the last decade.

Abandoned spaces (image for illustrative purposes only)

Abandoned spaces (image for illustrative purposes only)

Melding these elements together The Lost Boys became a sort of tongue in cheek reference to the way men are viewed and takes some of the “boy who never grew up” stories and expand on them with a touch of the grunge movement, American Gothic and the subversion of masculinity.

The images themselves will be built around derelict buildings, waste ground and a fractured symbolism of nature. Each model will have his own story that will hint at both the inspiration of Pans Lost Boys to the more dystopic visuals of the backdrop to fit with the “council estate boys" look of the models.

Additionally, to the clean makeup looks I have planned, there will be integration (slowly) of character makeup elements such as scarring and bruising to add depth to the characters to give a level of the cinematic and a harsher reality of the concept.

I am going to add extra kit soon and will release details on what goes into a lost shoot in terms of gear from the camera equipment to the makeup and brushes used which in-itself will be released as a blog or blogs.

While I appreciate this is a personal project it will be used to promote the Lost Project and give a voice to a different side of my own commercial/media background in makeup design taking a little of the narrative described above into projects that are currently being scripted with a view to building a stable of work.