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November 25, 2016

Smooth operator: hair removal with Veet’s Sensitive Precision Beauty Styler

Cecilia Xu/22.49

Women are often concerned about hair removal on sensitive areas of their body such as their face, which needs more gentle treatment, thus subtracting the option to treat these areas the same way as they would with other parts of their body. Research has shown that ‘Many women feel a stigma about shaving their face, and believed that shaving hair makes it grow back faster and thicker,’ Veet’s senior consumer marketing manager Emma Smith says.
   Veet’s Sensitive Precision Beauty Styler provides the solution to this, as it is super-gentle on the skin, making hair removal on any sensitive areas easy and safe. Gone are the days of needing multiple tools to stay hair and fuzz-free. Veet’s Beauty Styler is an all-in-one portable, handbag-friendly tool developed to provide women with a quick, effective and pain-free hair removal option, handy and easy to use for touch-ups, and effortlessly trimming and shaping facial, underarm and bikini hair.
   To facilitate precise shaping and styling, the Beauty Styler comes with multiple interchangeable heads: these include a two-headed trimmer for optimum eyebrow shaping and miscellaneous facial hair trimming, and a 20 mm trimmer head for underarms and bikini line.
   Veet takes smooth skin to a whole new level with the introduction of the Precision Beauty Styler and is now available from leading supermarkets and pharmacies, RRP NZ$49·99. Veet also invites users to share their successful use of the Precision Beauty Styler on social media, hashtagging #smoothoperator.—Cecilia Xu

November 18, 2016

Rock, Gold and Romance with the Body Shop

Cecilia Xu/0.17




Above: Our pick among the Body Shop’s Jungle Bell Rocks make-up: the Go for Gold look.

The Body Shop never fails to conjure an exciting collection suitable for the festive season. This time, with make-up to amp up your holiday and party spirit, the Body Shop brings you Jungle Bell Rocks, a wild-for-Christmas colour campaign featuring three vibrant make-up collections: Rock the Night, Go for Gold, and a True Romance. Each with their own personality and character in differing colour combos, there will sure be one that fits your party mood.
   These limited-edition looks are carefully crafted to each include nail polish, shimmering eye colour sticks, an eye-shadow quad and the on-trend matte liquid lipstick. Get a completely different look with each set, or mix and match to create your own. My personal favourite is the Go for Gold, a neutral brown-gold eye with a matte, dark plum lip that has been so popular this year. This may be best for the party.
   A True Romance, as the name suggests, is perfect for the evening date: a flirty amethyst-plum eye-shadow palette with light sugar-sweet lips. Rock the Night is the statement look for a girl’s night out: with fierce gal-about-town matching red nails and lips, topped off with gleaming black and metallic eyes, this look sure speaks of a lively night out in loud celebration.
   The Gold Leaf nail polish in the Gold collection is great and extremely appealing, while the colours in the Rock the Night shadow palette have the most dramatic and daring flair, not for the faint-hearted. The début release of their Matte Liquid Lipstick is a great success I believe—the colours are fabulous and fun, and made to last as long as your night.
   Eye quads (with Community Trade sesame and babassu oils) retail at NZ$49·95; the matte lip liquid at NZ$19·95; eye colour sticks (with Community Trade babassu oil and beeswax) at NZ$25·95; and the Colour Crush matte lipsticks (with Community Trade beeswax, Brazil nut, argan oil and organic coconut oil) at NZ$29·95. The products are 100 per cent vegetarian, with no gluten, carmine, petrolatum or mineral oil.—Cecilia Xu

November 17, 2016

Sustainability in brief: Living Nature’s lipstick gift packs; Ümran Aysan introduces fashion label

Lucire staff/11.42



Living Nature’s Colour Me Beautiful lipstick gift packs have become a permanent line, featuring three complementary, certified-natural, organic lipsticks in each pack. They are presented in three themes: Colour Me Natural, Colour Me Romantic, and Colour Me Vibrant.
   Living Nature points out that in a lifetime, we can ingest up to 1·7 kg of lipstick, hence choosing ones with natural ingredients is vital. Living Nature’s lipsticks feature coconut extracts, vitamin E, and nourishing waxes, moisturizing the lips. They are allergen-free, have no synthetic chemicals or preservatives, and are safe for use during pregnancy. Retail price is NZ$75, and they are available through Living Nature’s website.
   Meanwhile, Ægean-raised, London-based designer Ümran Aysan is contributing to sustainability in fashion.
   As a counter to fast fashion, and with a desire to reintroduce craftsmanship and a respect for local and ethical sourcing, Aysan has launched her eponymous label, featuring pieces for resort 2017 using exquisite, natural fabrics. Look closer and you’ll see delicate needle-craft and other details from local artisans. Positive Luxury has deemed Ümran Aysan a ‘Brand to Trust’ for her commitment to sustainability and her support of local communities.

November 16, 2016

Ralph & Russo, Charlotte Tilbury, Anya Hindmarch among Walpole winners; Lucy Hale named ambassador for Casetify

Lucire staff/12.50

Pretty Little Liars’ Lucy Hale has been named as a spokeswoman and creative director for Casetify, a company retailing cellphone cases, Apple Watch bands, Macbook sleeves and clutches.
   The capsule collection of 34 pieces has been launched in time for the new Apple Iphone 7, based around the idea of ‘delicate but daring,’ a motto credited to the actress. The designs reflect Hale’s tastes, including one with the quotation, ‘I like big brows and I cannot lie,’ as well as cheetah, floral and cacti prints, and one featuring her own dog, Elvis.
   Prices begin at US$40, and the range can be found at www.casetify.com/lucy-hale.
   The 15th annual Walpole Awards, presented in London on Wednesday, saw numerous fashion and beauty brands honoured for their contribution to luxury. Ralph & Russo won Outstanding Achievement in British Luxury, presented by Nadja Swarovski (right).
   Other winners included make-up artist Charlotte Tilbury, who won British Luxury Brand of the Year, and accessories’ designer Anya Hindmarch won the prize for Digital Innovation in British Luxury. Burberry and House of St Barnabas jointly won the Champion of British Luxury Sustainability award.

November 10, 2016

In brief: Lily-Rose Depp at Planetarium première; Bruce Weber to be honoured at British Fashion Awards; H&M in Vietnam

Cecilia Xu/10.42


Pascal Le Segretain

Chanel is heavily promoting its new No. 5 L’Eau spokeswoman, Lily-Rose Depp, decking her out fully in fashion, accessories and make-up from the brand. On Tuesday, she was at the screening of Planetarium in Paris, a film by Rebecca Zlotowski in which she co-stars as Natalie Portman’s younger sister. She wore a Chanel black cotton jacket from the cruise 2016–17 collection, and the Coco Crush ring in 18 ct yellow gold. As a rising star, and the daughter of two major celebrities, Depp is attracting plenty of attention as her own acting career takes off.
   After opening in New Zealand, Hennes & Mauritz (H&M), the international fashion brand known for offering fashion and quality at the best price in a sustainable way, has signed for its first store openings in Vietnam during 2017. More information will follow, says the company. In 2017, H&M will also open in Colombia, Iceland, Kazakhstan and Georgia.
   Finally, the British Fashion Council announced earlier this week that photographer Bruce Weber, famed for his black-and-white portraits will receive its Isabella Blow Award for Fashion Creator at the British Fashion Awards 2016. Weber will be honoured at this year’s ceremony at the Royal Albert Hall. Weber’s work has appeared in Vogue, Elle, Interview, Rolling Stone, Vanity Fair, and other publications, and rose to prominence with the 1982 Calvin Klein campaign featuring Tom Hintnaus in Greece.—Cecilia Xu, with Lucire staff


Bruce Weber/Calvin Klein Advertising Archive

Above: Tom Hinthaus, photographed by Bruce Weber for Calvin Klein, 1982.

November 7, 2016

The Body Shop goes wild for Christmas

Cecilia Xu/2.14



Spiced apple, vanilla chai, frosted berries—all the scents that remind your heart and senses that it’s Christmas season. The Body Shop, in tune with their ‘Forever Against Animal Testing’ slogan, created their Christmas campaign ‘Go wild for Christmas’, with the concept of animals in the wild, bringing you these delicious nature-infused scents.
   I gave these a try and they smell absolutely delicious. With three scent families that include shimmer mists (NZ$46·95), festive tins (NZ$69·95), sugar scrubs (NZ$47·50) as well as the classic body butter, there will certainly be one scent you cannot ignore. My personal favourite is the frosted berries—made with cranberries from North America; one spritz of the shimmer mist and the whole room stays scented for the morning, plus adding a sparkle to your newly tanned skin.
   The Spiced Apple tin packaging is a delight, and can definitely light up (or pass as) a Christmas tree decoration. Lollipop wand sets, heart boxes … the list goes on, and to add to the ‘wild’ theme, your body butter can be customized to be ‘Wild about …,’ followed by the name of the receiver. With such a variety of options and gifts under NZ$50, these scents and animals truly love you for buying gifts that are animal-friendly this Christmas.—Cecilia Xu





November 6, 2016

Olga Lomaka’s Artefacts: west meets east at Saatchi Gallery

Lucire staff/22.07




ValmonS Photography

For a short period, the Saatchi Gallery has been transformed into a temple with not just one, but a series of Buddhas. Each one of them has been “dressed up” into somewhat inappropriate attire, symbolizing the obsessive consumerist society we live in. From recognizable brands to modern-day icons to symbols instantly recognized by the millennials, the Buddhas silently, without judgement, point out how engrossed we all are into disconnecting from our spiritual selves and consuming more and more physical and digital content.
   Renowned London-based artist Olga Lomaka is presenting her latest exhibition, Artefacts. The leitmotif of the Artefacts is the clash of contemporary western and ancient eastern civilizations. It contrasts the principles of consumer society, its cultural and technological obsession, with the peacefulness and profoundness of Buddhism, the major religion of the east.
   ‘The project is ambiguous: I do not expect the viewer to make a choice, or to draw any dichotomies between cultures and notions,’ says Lomaka. Artefacts is a collision of tradition and spiritualism with what most of us see as being important here and now—the latest gadget, the latest trend. ‘I believe that only a harmonious balancing of these two attitudes can propel us out of the current “confrontation” between them. The wisdom of traditional past will help us advance on the path of our spiritual evolution,’ adds the artist.
   The concept of Artefacts may have surprised many but it certainly didn’t make the guests of Saatchi Gallery leave without questioning their values. Some of the Buddhas have travelled with Olga Lomaka to the prestigious Art Monaco fair where the she has been granted the Best Artist award. Some of the other Buddhas, including Fashion Guru, Miss Universe and Super Buddha were chosen to represent the artist at the Biennale of Contemporary Art in Firenze in 2017, where you could view them and ponder what is important to you. After all, there is never a wrong time to question your beliefs, right?—Elina Lukas, Correspondent



















ValmonS Photography, Erik Erxon, Deivydas Lekavicius

November 2, 2016

Topshop’s halo untarnished as it opens new stores while Sir Philip Green risks losing his knighthood

Lucire staff/11.10


CNN

As Topshop opens its doors in Wellington today, its second store in New Zealand, and in the wake of an announcement of a new flagship store in Dublin, Sir Philip Green, who chairs its parent Arcadia Group, has been under assault by British politicians.
   The most recent controversy surrounds Sir Philip’s knighthood, which was awarded to him for services to retail. However, a damning report published in July 2016 concluded that British Home Stores, which had been bought by Sir Philip in 2000 for £200 million and was formerly part of Arcadia, had been plundered, leaving BHS on life support. The mood in the Commons in October was that Sir Philip should be stripped of his knighthood, passing the amendment, ‘[This House] noting that Philip Green received his knighthood for his services for the retail industry, believes his actions raise the question of whether he should be allowed to continue to be a holder of the honour and calls on the honours forfeiture committee to recommend his knighthood be cancelled and annulled.’
   None of Sir Philip’s supporters were present at the debate, where MPs launched into attacks on the multi-millionaire whilst under parliamentary privilege.
   Also ignored as attacks were launched against Sir Philip was that, for a considerable period between 2000 and 2015, BHS employed thousands and the British establishment fêted the businessman. There were talks of a business venture with Simon Cowell, involving Cheryl Cole; supermodel Kate Moss created a line sold through Topshop. Even in the US, Sir Philip enjoyed a glowing reputation, winning a National Retail Federation’s Retailer of the Year Award. Between 2002 and 2009 BHS had paid £167 million of corporation tax, and capital expenditure had been £421 million while it was under Sir Philip’s control, according to Taveta Investments, his holding company. However, The Guardian believes that £580 million in dividends, rents and interest had been extracted by the Green family.
   While the motion does not mean Sir Philip will lose his knighthood, it will be difficult for the honours’ forfeiture committee, which considers the matter, to ignore.
   Sir Philip sold BHS for £1 in 2015 to investors led by Dominic Chappell—someone whom he now considers to be ‘categorically’ the wrong buyer; by April 2016 it had gone into administration, with the loss of 11,000 jobs and a £571 million pension scheme deficit. Sixteen years before the fund had been in a £5 million surplus.
   By July, the work and pensions’ select committee and the business, innovation and skills (BIS) committee issued a report which placed the blame of BHS’s collapse at Sir Philip’s feet. They accused him and others of extracting hundreds of millions of pounds from BHS, enriching himself and his family, and that he showed little business acumen. The committees further labelled the ‘systematic plunder’ of BHS ‘the unacceptable face of capitalism’, a term once linked to the Lonrho conglomerate in the 1970s and its chief executive Tiny Rowland. The committees also concluded that Sir Philip failed to invest in the business and that he was ultimately responsible for the pension fund’s deficit.
   BHS’s overseas franchises and its website were sold to Al Mana Group, under which they have thrived.
   Earlier in October, it is believed that Prime Minister Theresa May’s reference at the Conservative Party conference to business people who ‘take out massive dividends while knowing that the company pension is about to go bust’ was about Sir Philip.
   The man who chaired the work and pensions’ committee, the Rt Hon Frank Field MP, launched into a further attack on Sir Philip on Channel 4 News on October 18, forcing Taveta to counter the statements. Field said that Sir Philip was now running Arcadia ‘into the ground like BHS,’ and warned that Arcadia staff should be concerned for their pension fund.
   The same week, Sir Philip pledged to find a solution to the pension deficit in an interview with ITV and was ‘very sorry’ for those affected by the collapse. He claimed that he was in discussions with the Pensions’ Regulator to find a solution, though the Regulator stated that it was yet to receive a ‘comprehensive and credible’ proposal.
   On ITV, Sir Philip defended the years during which a dividend was taken out, stating that BHS was profitable at the time, though the committees concluded that those profits were made by cost-cutting and squeezing suppliers. He believes that the support he and his company gave to BHS from 2005 was closer to £850 million.
   Chappell, meanwhile, facing criticisms from Sir Philip, supported the stripping of Sir Philip’s knighthood.
   There is an ongoing investigation into the failure by the Insolvency Service while the Serious Fraud Office has begun looking into the matter.

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