Friday, February 29, 2008

Drew Barrymore en Vogue

Drew Barrymore on the March 2008 cover of Vogue

Both Beauty Addict and Christopher Drummond are aghast about this horrid Photoshopped picture of Drew Barrymore on the cover of the March 2008 issue Vogue. Beauty Addict notes the changes to Drew's facial contours, while Christopher notes how thin her arm looks.

I'm aghast, too, as it looks nothing like Drew, and I don't like the overly arched eyebrow.

Drew has brought new glamour to Cover Girl as that brand's latest face. It's easy to forget that she first made a name for herself playing Gertie, the little girl in E.T. When I last watched E.T., I was blown away by how this five- or six-year-old girl (which is how old she was then) took direction.

Gertie encounters E.T. for the first time

French lover

No, I didn't watch the Oscars ceremony last weekend. Receiving up-to-the-moment results by refreshing the Yahoo! home page or by waking up to the news the following morning was sufficient for me.

Still, I was struck that French actress Marion Cotillard won the Best Actress Oscar for her portrayal of Edith Piaf in La Vie en Rose. The last time a French actress won the Best Actress Oscar was in 1959, when Simone Signoret won the award.

Marion Cotillard

BTW Cotillard is also a "troofer."

What else links Simone Signoret and Piaf, the singer portrayed by Cotillard? It is the late singer/actor/lover Yves Montand, who was Signoret's husband and Piaf's lover. In addition, Yves Montand had an affair with this unidentified actress:

Yves Montand and unnamed actress

Friday roundup - February 29, 2008

It's Friday ... and a leap year as well! Since it's Friday, it's time to recognize notable blogging activity from friends of The Style Page:

Mischo Beauty discovers the butter London line of nail polishes, which are free of formaldehyde, toluene or dibutyl phthalate. You may find butter London at b-glowing.

Beauty Maverick loves the Cannabis Santal Scented Candle from Fresh. She also reacts to the news that druggie Amy Winehouse is set to launch her own beauty line: No, no, no.

~charng of Frivolous Rants returns to blogging after a month's absence. She examines how changing female roles have affected marriage. Given the angry response my article on Let's Stop Glamorizing Pregnancy Out of Wedlock has generated, I think that some might be offended by the traditionalist views (not necessarily her own) that ~charng describes and seemingly longs for at some level. In that case, it's important to remember that she's writing as a member of the Chinese community in Malaysia - a far more traditional society than the U.S. or, for that matter, Europe.

Beauty Addict has disdained most celebrity fragrances, with the exception of Sarah Jessica Parker's Lovely and Covet. Now she admits her fondness for Glow by J. Lo and the new (married) mother's latest fragrance Deseo.

Thursday, February 28, 2008

New nail product introductions

Nail lacquer by Borghese

Those of you who prowl the cosmetics aisles of your local Walgreen's, CVS, or Rite-Aid might have been surprised to discover a countertop display of nail polishes (with unusual dual brush heads) by Borghese, which had been known as a prestige brand. The beyond 40 beauty blog (found through my BlogRush widget) has done a little research to discover that Borghese has partnered with Del Labs, the parent company for Sally Hansen, to market this line. Similarly, Borghese has a line sold exclusively through Costco called Kirkland Signature™ by Borghese Collection.

On a related subject, Wal-Mart will introduce a line of nail polishes from Italy's Deborah Group.

North American certification for natural and organic cosmetics

From comes this article Natural and organic certification developed specifically for cosmetics. Canadian organization Certech Registration Inc. announces certification of cosmetics products as "organic." The certification rules have the same requirements as those provided by Ecocert, a certification body based in France.

Currently, the only products that Certech Registration Inc. has certified are eaurganic products from Canadian company d'Avicenna. This does not mean other products do not meet Certech's requirements; it might mean that other companies have not submitted their products for certification. It would be interesting to know what certification costs: for example, a CEO of a small independent cosmetics company told me that one pays $10,000 per year for the Skin Cancer Foundation's Seal of Recommendation. Certification or recognition therefore would be prohibitive for small companies such as hers.

NSF International, another product certification body, plans to roll out its own rules for organic products this spring, if these rules are agreed upon.

For other articles on The Style Page blog about organic cosmetics, see Who Needs Soy Lecithin? 'S.T. Lawder,' Naturally - and Work Initiated on American National Standard for Organic Personal Care Products.

In a subsequent article, I'll review Organic wear™ 100% Natural Origin Tinted Moisturizer from Physicians Formula. The Organic wear™ line advertises itself as the first Ecocert certified Organic Line of Makeup in the U.S.

Sunday, February 24, 2008

Buzz on the OPI India Collection

While I thought it was ignorant on the part of OPI to use an ad showing a model holding a huge turkey sandwich for its India Collection, I have to agree that the shades are very pretty:

OPI India Collection

It's also worthwhile to note the buzz that this collection has been getting:

Beauty Anonymous (found through my BlogRush widget) writes:

Lunch at the Delhi looks quite rosy-pink red in the bottle. It delivers a glossy red finish on the nails with pink and coral undertones. Surprisingly, I found the color reflects a warm tone of red shade under natural lights or indoor lights. Unlike the sexy, dominant power of deep reds, bold reds or true reds, Lunch at the Delhi is a soft, sweet tone of red with a girly woman characteristic. I have tried many kinds of red nail colors before from different brands. Lunch at the Delhi is one of the few that suits my complexion nicely, and is appealing to me.

Edwina Ing-Chambers, beauty columnist for FT (which, like the New York Times and Wall Street Journal, has discovered the value of lifestyle reporting) writes:

Besides, it turns out that this stuff [blue nail polish] is flying off the shelves. When O.P.I. launched its “Russian Navy” shade of varnish in November, one Manhattan boutique sold 1,800 pots of it in 24 hours and since it launched in the UK it has sold out three times. Plus its new “Yoga-ta Get this Blue” shade – more indigo-ish for spring – is already trotting out of the door.

Ing-Chambers then waxes rhapsodic about Chanel's Blue Satin, the "it" shade of nail polish for the season. Another blue she likes is Essie's Aruba Blue (which is unfortunately named, in view of Aruba's mismanagement of the Natalee Halloway disappearance case):

She describes this as "lighter, brighter, kind of Renaissance tone; Botticelli would probably have loved it."

Friday, February 22, 2008

Changes to The Style Page blog

I had installed the Talkr MP3 player so that you can listen to articles on The Style Page as well as read them, but I removed it, as my computer became infected shortly thereafter. I can't establish casuality between installing Talkr and my computer getting infected, but I wasn't going to take any risks.

I also removed banners for,,, and on the sidebar, as these banners were being replaced by teasers for T&A vidoes and ads such as "your online privacy might be at risk" and "you might have already won." I am continuing to use text links, however.

I purchased and installed an entire suite of security software from McAfee, but that didn't solve the problem. Then, as I was starting Firefox (my preferred browser), there was a popup window alerting me about the new Yahoo! toolbar. As Yahoo! is a trusted source (It also hosts my web site), I went ahead and downloaded the toolbar. After installing the toolbar, I ran the anti-spy software from there. Problem solved! Go figure ...

Friday roundup - February 22, 2008

Notable activity from friends of The Style Page:

Soul-Piercing Reflections presents lists of natural ingredients that are good for you and those that should be avoided. Bottom line: if it's aromatic and stings or burns on skin contact, avoid it.

The Beauty Brains is taking pre-orders for their book. I'm expecting Paula Begoun with an attitude.

Scandalous Beauty raves about Flirt! Cosmetics (also a favorite of mine), available exclusively at Kohl's. She even identifies which Flirt! eye shadows are duplicates of those offered by MAC. That shouldn't be surprising, as both Flirt! and MAC are owned by Estee Lauder companies.

Finally, i♥makeup, lover of Indian-themed beauty, recognizes me for alerting her to this fragrance:

KENZO AMOUR "Indian Holi" eau de perfum

It's inspired by Holi, the springtime festival of colors.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Mineral madness

I was shopping at the mall, when I discovered a kiosk for BellaPierre mineral cosmetics. A young man called out to women asking if they would like makeovers. Most shook their heads and walked on. As editor of The Style Page who's always on the lookout for a story, I chose to stop.

Promotional material from BellaPierre
scanned by The Style Page

The young man showed me stacks of mineral powders (Pure Colors and True Colors also sell these stacks) and how one could use them for eye shadow, eye liner, lip color, and even nail color, with the help of mixing products such as eye shadow base, lip gloss, and clear nail polish.

Bare Escentuals is the leader in loose mineral powder cosmetics. How could BellaPierre distinguish itself from Bare Escentuals? For one thing, Bellapierre's powder foundation doesn't contain bismuth oxychloride, which the young man described as irrtating. Is this true? Check out Paula Begoun's Special Report on Mineral Makeup, which states:

bismuth oxychloride can cause slight skin irritation (Source: Although talc has the same potential for slight irritation, bismuth oxychloride is more likely to cause an allergic contact dermatitis due to its pearlescent nature (Source: This is more of a concern when bismuth oxychloride is the main ingredient in a cosmetic, as it is for many mineral makeups.

So maybe there's something to BellaPierre's claims, but it seems that its claims are overwrought. I noticed some irritation on my eyelid soon after using BellaPierre's shimmering mica powders, and wondered if it had to do with the mica particles, but the irritation went away in a day, after I had cleaned all my eyeshadow brushes and applied a little opthalmic ointment to my lid.

Bare Escentuals has associated "mineral" with "pure," and it's something that other cosmetics companies have picked up on to market their products. The term "mineral" had referred to loose powders, but now it's being associated with products such as lipstick, liquid foundation, and pressed powders that contain other ingredients in addition to minerals. Thus, all cosmetics can be considered mineral cosmetics! Be critical, and recognize that "mineral" is just another marketing construct.

I walked away from the BellaPierre kiosk with a stack of 9 shimmering powders - 3 pinky browns of different intensities (great for eye shadow), 1 dark brown, 1 coppery shade, 1 gold, 1 red (great for lip color), 1 white, and 1 black - and two itty-bitty cubes of lip gloss and eye shadow base. The young man claimed that I was getting an additional 5 for the cost of 4, but I attributed that to bogus discounting of already overpriced products. Sixty dollars for 4 tiny cubes of color would be obscene, but sixty dollars for nine at least makes it comparable to the price of $55 that True Colors and Pure Colors charge for a stack of eight. I'm having fun playing with the loose powders, which can be very soft.

Friday, February 15, 2008

Friday roundup - February 15, 2008

Here are articles from Friends (listed on my blogroll) that caught my eye:

Makeup artist Christoper Drummond sets aside blogging on beauty to share how a chance encounter made him count his blessings.


Ondo Lady blogs on the book Top Tips for Girls, which sounds kind of like Hints from Heloise.

Sarah Bellum of The Beauty Brains blogs on the truly weird: Realdolls, which are life-size, anatomically correct dolls with interchangeable features such as faces and tongues (tell Gene Simmons), and the men who love them.

I make no bones about the fact that I'm a fan of Paula Begoun. If that makes me an "aging conservative," so be it. In spite of that, or perhaps because of that, I love the name of this blog: If Blue Eyeshadow's Illegal, I Should Be In Prison.

Lastly, Mischo Beauty, a fellow resident of the DC Metro area, has had the very pricy ($250) Natura Bisse Diamond Cream on her wish list and asks, What's on your beauty "wish list"?

Oh My! Blush: too cute

Here's what's on my list:

  • Oh My! Blush from French company Arcancil: I'm not into girly girl, but I love the compact and fluffy puff. Anyone going to France soon?

  • The launch of Le Métier de Beauté: the lip colors and eye shadows look beautiful.

  • The launch of the custom luxury collection, whatever that's supposed to be, from Jouer. I've been a big fan of Jouer (see my past posts) and its interlocking palettes that enable one to customize their palettes.

  • World Girl eye shadow palette in Rosetta Stone from MakeupMania - the Pomegranate Wine shade is tantalizing. MakeupMania has been online for ten years, and its look hasn't changed significantly over that time. It's still fun to browse for unusual products such as mascara in a squeeze tube (of the kind used for dispensing ointment) and inexpensive cosmetics from La Femme.

  • SAÚDE PELE luminizer from Christopher's eponymous makeup line Christopher Drummond Beauty, another projected launch.
Sigh. How long will these companies tease us with projected launches?

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Cultural insensitivity?


I always enjoy visiting the i♥make-up blog for her posts on beauty secrets of Bollywood stars. On Monday, she posted an article on OPI's India Collection nail polishes, in keeping with her India theme. As usual, OPI has come up with punny names for its nail polishes.

I scanned the above image from the March 2008 issue of Lucky (and if someone could tell me how I can prevent the reverse side from showing through, I'd be grateful). I found this picture of the model holding the turkey sandwich insensitive and lacking in cultural awareness, as a majority of Indians are vegetarians. Some Hindus eschew onions, garlic, and mushrooms as tamasic, that is, tending to sluggishness. Some abstain from certain foods on fast days. Observant Jains do not eat vegetables that grow underground, such as carrots and potatoes.

I do agree with i♥make-up, however, that this ad was probably not intentional. What do you think?

Candy Paint from Carol's Daughter

In my review of Trish McEvoy's Be Prepared Pink Compact, I promised a subsequent post on Candy Paint lip gloss from Carol's Daughter. Carol's Daughter is a line of bath, body, hair, and skin care products founded by Lisa Price (she's Carol's Daughter). Products are formulated with plant oils. I want to try Carol's Daughter Leave-in Conditioner in Khoret Amen, after reading Beauty Addict's review - I love woodsy scents.

Candy Paint lip gloss is the first foray that Carol's Daughter is making into color. As with other Carol's Daughter products, it's formulated with plant oils - a little natural peppermint oil for flavor makes it taste like butter mints.

Sugah Glaze is a clear gloss with shimmer (I hate the name, however, it's as phony as the accent that Oprah adopted when she told the audience why she was supporting Obama over Hillary), Park Avenue Pink is a pink that's not cloying or precious, and Hot Mocha is a deep brown.

A portion of the proceeds of sales of Candy Paint go to the Lupus Foundation of America. Lupus is an autoimmune disorder that affects African Americans, Hispanics/Latinos, Asians, and Native Americans disproportionately. One of my classmates in college had lupus flares that forced her to drop out two semesters: because of the lockstep nature of the engineering program in which we were enrolled, she effectively lost two years of college. So I understand what lupus can do. It's a worthy cause that Carol's Daughter is supporting.

You may find Carol's Daughter Candy Paint at

Saturday, February 09, 2008

Finds from World Market

I love shopping World Market. It's what Pier 1 used to be, long before Pier 1 began aping Pottery Barn. I especially enjoy browsing the cookware, fashion accessories, and food departments: Katjes Yoghurt Gum candy from Germany is my current favorite!

I picked up the smaller of these two vases on my last visit to World Market:

It's ceramic and features the geometric designs characteristic of the Shipibo tribe of Peru. Most examples of Shipibo design feature an off-white background with the designs in black. Some are done on backgrounds of saffron or henna shades. This green is unusual, and beautiful.

On a previous visit, I bought the rectangular sushi plate, below. Instead of using it on the tabletop, I use it to contain my necklaces and bracelets. It's made in Japan, but the colors and design make me think of mehndi.

Do you get the idea that I like ethnic design motifs?

Friday, February 08, 2008

Pocket reads

Every now and then, I like to get away from the topic of beauty and write about something else. Here, I'd like to share three series of books that don't require major commitments of time to reading and that you can readily fit into your purse.

Very Short Introductions

Very Short Introudctions from Oxford University is a series featuring 160 titles that cover topics in history, philosophy, religion, science, and the humanities. These books feature covers with ombre watercolor illustrations and measure 6.8 x 4.2 x 0.5 inches (about 160 pages).


Discoveries is a series of books from publisher Harry N. Abrams, Inc. These books measure 7 x 5 x 0.5 inches and also run about 160 pages. Unlike VSI, however, Discoveries contains many color photographs and other images. A book on Gandhi has other features, such as appendices with his speeches, writings, and commentaries by others.

I found separate kiosks for VSI and Discoveries at a Borders store in St. Louis. You may shop VSI and Discoveries at

BüK is probably the most unusual series of the three. This series consists of pamphlets that measure 5 x 7 inches and run only about 16-32 pages - according to the web site, reading that can be done in the time it takes to drink a cup of coffee. You have to visit the web site to see the odd selection of titles. BüK even offers its pamphlets as hotel room amenities: imagine! Something other to read than the Gideons Bible!

I found a BüK kiosk at a Whole Paycheck, er, Whole Foods Market in St. Louis, but the kiosk would be ideal for point of purchase at a coffeehouse. And how's this gift set for Valentine's Day:

BüK Collector’s Kit I

It features a slipcase featuring six BüKs, a package of Hawaiian-grown and roasted coffee beans, and a bright red mug with the BüK logo.

Wednesday, February 06, 2008


Beautyblender Gift Set

I've long been curious about this egg-shaped makeup applicator - will it really improve my makeup application, or is it just a gimmick? I resisted buying this product, as twenty dollars was an absurd amount of money to spend on a makeup sponge. Finally, I decided to buy Beautyblender. After the New York Times published an article saying that we beauty bloggers do what we do for freebies, I want it known that I spend hundreds of dollars on products for review on The Style Page blog.

I'm here to tell you that this is a great product (although I'm waiting for knockoffs that work just as well). The wider end is great for tapping or stippling makeup on one's checks. The narrow end is great for applying makeup around the eyes and sides of the nose (although Matin, as excellent as his advice was, discouraged this practice). I've usually avoided liquid, cream, or stick concealers, as I get frustrated blending them. However, Beautyblender does a great job of blending concealer. BTW my favorite concealer is L'Oreal True Match Concealericon: the brush on the wand is tiny, allowing for precise application.

You may shop for Beautyblender at

Saturday, February 02, 2008


I'm loving this brand of affordable cosmetics, especially for its eye-popping selection of eyeshadows ($5 singles, $7 trios).

NYX is actively courting the Hispanic market by engaging Mexican singer/telenovela actress Maite Perroni as its "face." (Similarly, MAC had a limited edition lipstick Rubia designed for la chica dorada de Mexico "The Golden Girl of Mexico"Paulina Rubio). But its marketing shouldn't dissuade non-Hispanics from sampling NYX. Although I have a light complexion and I have a strictly European background, I love sampling cosmetics from lines such as Iman, which are targeted to "women of color." I've always regarded "women of color" strictly as a marketing construct. We are all women of color!

NYX is available through Ulta and various beauty outlets.


I received an email from Organic Glamazon alerting me about Futurenatural, which aims to be Sephora for organic and natural beauty products. This online shopping site has been live for less than 2 months.

Brands include Jo Wood Organics (from the wife of Rolling Stones guitarist Ron Wood), Kimberly Sayer, Mod Skin Labs, Marseilles de Savon, Tsi-La, Suki, Farmaesthetics, Hamadi, and Malie.

As for me, I'm coveting these multi-taskers from Sukicolor:

Suki Pure Cream Stain in Clay