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May 5, 2015

Video: who wore what at the 2015 Met Gala? Beyoncé, FKA Twigs, Rihanna stand out

Lucire staff/11.11

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Taylor Hill


Jamie McCarthy

Who wore what at the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Costume Institute 2015 Gala, benefiting the CFDA–Vogue Fashion Fund, with the theme, China: through the Looking Glass?
   We spotted Jessica Hart in a red Valentino Chinoiserie-style velvet dress, really getting into the spirit of the theme, accessorized with Carrera y Carrera jewellery; Kate Beckinsale made a similar choice for her jewels, and opted for a golden gown from Diane von Furstenberg and heels from Christian Louboutin.
   In our videos below, Sarah Jessica Parker surprised with a massive Philip Treacy custom headdress and a gown with a long train, designed by her in collaboration with Hennes & Mauritz. She wasn’t alone in donning head pieces: Tabitha Simmons (in Dolce & Gabbana) and Selena Gomez (in Vera Wang) went for them, too.
   Katie Holmes, sporting a fashionable bob, meanwhile, wore a sparkling, backless, beaded Zac Posen gown, with rose embroidery on the train. Kerry Washington, accompanied by her husband Nnamdi Asomugha, wore a satin Prada gown with a long train and floral embroidery. Another celebrity couple was Robert Pattinson and FKA Twigs—one of Lucire’s news-makers as we summed up 2014—with Twigs wearing a high-slit gown with a nude print, complete with male genitalia, while Pattinson opted for something more conservative.
   BeyoncĂ© was late to the event but eventually emerged wearing a very revealing, sparkling Givenchy gown, designed by Riccardo Tisci, that was barely there, inspired by I Dream of Jeannie—which also explains the ponytail. Another celebrity followed by the celeb titles, Kim Kardashian, wore a form-fitting white dress designed by Peter Dundas, from his first collection for Roberto Cavalli.
   Miley Cyrus’s hair also gained attention with its new look, with blue and green tints, while she wore a black studded Alexander Wang gown with large cut-outs, accessorized with an Ana Khouri ear cuff. Rihanna arrived later at the event, wearing a startling yellow Guo Pei robe with a train so large it required three assistants.
   The last video features SofĂ­a Vergara in a Grecian-inspired Marchesa gown, and her fiancĂ© Joe Manganiello. Vergara wrote on Instagram, ‘Gracias! So excited to be going to the Met Gala 
 We r ready!!’

Sarah Jessica Parker

Katie Holmes

Kerry Washington

Robert Pattinson and FKA Twigs

Beyoncé

Kim Kardashian

Miley Cyrus

Rihanna

SofĂ­a Vergara and Joe Manganiello

Summary

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May 1, 2015

It’s full circle for style.com: back to its origins in fashion retail

Jack Yan/14.17

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Top Earlier today, attempting to get into Style.com meant a virus warning—the only trace of this curiosity is in the web history. Above Style.com is back, with a note that it will be transforming into an e-tail site.

If there’s one constant in fashion, it’s change. The other one, which we notice thanks to a number of our team being well schooled on fashion history, is that trends always return, albeit in modified form. Both have come into play with Style.com, which announced earlier this week that it would become an ecommerce site.
   When Lucire started, we linked to style.com, but it wasn’t in our fashion magazines’ directory. It was, instead, in our shopping guide.
   In 2000, that all changed, and it began appearing under our fashion magazine links, where it was until today. An attempt to log in to the home page was met by a virus warning, preventing us from going further. We figured that this was part of the transformation of the website as it readied itself for the next era, discouraging people from peering. However, having had these warnings splashed across our own pages two years ago courtesy of Google’s faulty bot, when our site was in fact clean, there was a part of us taking it with a grain of salt. In either case, given the impending change, it was probably the right time to remove the link.
   This evening, Style.com is back and virus-free, with an overlay graphic announcing that the website will be changing. Plenty of our media colleagues have analysed the closure over the past week: the Murdoch Press has gossiped about how the layoffs were announced, WWD suggests editor-in-chief Dirk Standen didn’t know it was coming, based on rumours, while Fashionista puts it all into context by analysing just where ecommerce is within the fashion sector, and that content should be the answer over clothing sales.
   What is interesting is no one that we’ve spotted has mentioned how the style.com domain name (we’ve carefully noted it in lowercase there) has effectively come full circle. Perhaps we really are in the age of Wikipedia-based research, as this fact is not mentioned there at all.
   When Lucire launched in 1997, style.com was the website for Express Style, later more prominently, and simply, branded Express, a US fashion retailer. It’s not hard to imagine that had Express remained at the URL, it would have become an e-tailer; it has, after all, made the move into ecommerce at its present home, express.com. Like a fashion trend that comes back two decades later, style.com has gone back to its roots: by the autumn it’ll be e-tailing.
   The omission from the above paragraph is the sale of the style.com domain name by Express to CondĂ© Nast in the late 1990s. We never completely understood the need to start a new brand to be the US home of Vogue and W; for many  years, typing vogue.com into the browser in the US would take one automatically to Style.com. Then, somewhere along the line, CondĂ© Nast decided that vogue.com should be the online home of Vogue after all.
   But having made the decision to forge ahead with Style.com, CondĂ© Nast did it with a lot of resources, and took its site to number one among print fashion magazine web presences in a remarkably short space of time. It devoted plenty of resources to it, and it’s thanks to Style.com that certain things that were once frowned upon—e.g. showing off catwalk collections after the show—became acceptable. Designers used to enjoy the fact that we and Elle US delayed online coverage, the belief being that the delay ensured that pirates could not copy their designs and beat them to the high street.
   To get itself known, CondĂ© Nast bought advertising at fashion websites that were better known, including this one (yes, in 2000 that really was the case), at a time when online advertising cost considerably more than it does today.
   The muscle from the best known name in fashion publishing changed the way the media interacted with readers. Designers figured that if they wanted coverage, they would have to accept that their work would be shown nearly instantly. We became used to that idea, so much so that we now have to show the catwalk videos live in the 2010s.
   In some ways, the change makes sense: we’re talking about an Alexa rank in the 4,000s, which translates to plenty of traffic. The name is known, and most shoppers will make some association with Vogue. The official word is that Franck Zayan, formerly head of ecommerce for Galeries Lafayette, will helm the revised website, and he’s reporting that brands are coming on board rapidly.
   One shouldn’t mourn the loss of Style.com as a fashion news portal, since the content we’re all used to is bound to appear at Vogue. And in all the years we had it in our magazines’ directory, it was listed under our Vogue entry anyway. We await the new site to see what CondĂ© Nast will do with it, and it may yet return to the spot where it once was in the 20th century, in the shopping guide.—Jack Yan, Publisher

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April 30, 2015

BCBG Max Azria releases Magnum Belgian Chocolate Wrap, fashion with a chocolate scent

Lucire staff/11.46

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Top The BCBG Max Azria for Magnum Belgian Chocolate Wrap. Above BCBG Max Azria chief creative officer Lubov Azria modelling the wrap.

Unilever’s Magnum already established itself as a fashionable brand, teaming up years ago with Karl Lagerfeld and Rachel Bilson. This time, Magnum has teamed up with BCBG Max Azria with their BCBG Max Azria for Magnum Belgian Chocolate Wrap, a wrap that gives off a scent that is reminiscent of the experience of enjoying a Magnum ice-cream bar.
   Harvard scientist and scent inventor David Edwards and master perfumer Christope Laudamiel worked on the scent with Unilever.
   Using Onotes (styled oNotes by its makers), a scent platform created by Edwards and his team, the wrap’s scent has been called ‘decadent’ by Unilever, and marks the first time Onotes has been used in a fashion accessory.
   Unveiled Wednesday at the BCBG flagship store in New York, the wrap features a swirling brown and caramel pattern—which itself already conveys the Magnum ice-cream—and is made of suede and viscose.
   â€˜In fashion, we focus so much on sight and touch,’ said Lubov Azria, chief creative officer of BCBG Max Azria, in the release. ‘The design of the wrap was inspired by the smooth feel of chocolate and the visual of a melting Magnum Double Caramel ice-cream bar. But to find a way to incorporate the aroma as well means the BCBG Max Azria for Magnum Belgian Chocolate Wrap has taken fashion beyond the realm of the visual and tactile, giving everyone a new and innovative way to experience fashion as a true feast of the senses.’

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April 16, 2015

A spring in their steps: Secret Room’s pre-MTV Movie Awards’ suite

Lucire staff/10.22

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Leyla Messian

As usual, Rita Branch and Amy Boatright’s Secret Room Events lined up a docket of product talent filled with delights for girls and boys of all ages. However, young Reef Carneson was the true VIP of the day. At age six, he is a cancer survivor as well as the first pediatric bonemarrow recipient in his native South Africa. Unfortunately, he developed Graft Versus Host Disease (GVHD) after his procedure. When a diagnosis of skin cancer made matters worse, his family came to the United States for further treatment. To help offset the costs for his family, Rock It 4 Reef has been established to keep Reef and his family going strong in his quest to beat his illness. This year, generous Style Lounge attendees have enabled the Secret Room to collect for little Reef’s health care.
   As befitting any pre-awards show fĂȘte, a red carpet led into one of the brightly lit ballrooms of the elegant SLS Hotel in Beverly Hills. But this was no ordinary trade show. A sparkling hall showcased a hit parade of new products, accompanied by high-energy pop blasting out of a small device that looked like a coffee pot. In spite of its appearance, the Archt One 360-degree sound system did not dispense Lavazza or Starbucks. Instead, a pulsating brew of multi-directional sound poured straight from the Singapore-based inventor’s Iphone, through the device and to the farthest corners of the ballroom. Information for this percolating Kickstarter invention can be found at archtaudio.com.
   Another impressive device we discovered is Cheero’s Ingress Power Cube, offering 12,000 MHz of juice that allows the user to charge two devices while flying, camping, mountain biking or surviving on a deserted island. Even castaways and hermits need their music and games. Cheero has several models of chargers available, including one that comes with a flexible toy “transformer” whose eyes light up when the gadget is fully charged. Speck was on hand with a colourful array of Ipad, tablet and phone covers with mid-century modern patterns in vivid turquoise, teal, yellow and vermilion.
   One literal highlight of the day is best used at night-time, and not only by children. Total Dreamz by Aloka Designs USA offers a variety of hypnotic, colour-changing nightlights. Little girls will fall asleep alongside a rainbow-tinted horse, puppy, or fairy, while little boys will ride a train or spaceship to Dreamland. Children over 18 will be mesmerized by the psychedelic heart and butterfly designs that bring an aurora borealis effect to their bedroom. Sleepyheads can program these night lights to turn off automatically when the fun is over.
   After splitting a surprisingly tasty, probiotic-packed Effi Bar made of raw dates, cashews, and goji berries, we moved on to the clothing and accessories. Wiley X Eyewear outfitted attendees with the same sleek model of shades worn by Bradley Cooper in American Sniper. Although designed for men, these are quite flattering on women. Lightweight yet durable, they cool off the eyes by cutting the glare effectively. It is interesting to note that this brand also provides eye protection for the Australian military.
   No style lounge is complete without introducing designers who turn trash into fashion. Protecting the earth while making us look good: we’ve all seen or worn recycled denim, restructured vintage clothing, and jewellery created from old glass. Made from recycled plastic bottles harvested in the US, Underground Chic has a collection of stylish handbags, clutches, and totes in a variety of fun, crayon-coloured hues. One style looks and feels like genuine, soft brown suede. It’s easy to forget that these cute accessories were once bottles that could have ended up clogging our oceans.
   Anje, also based in New York, has created a line of luxurious yet minimalist cashmere garments in multiple shades of grey, charcoal and black. Although expensive, the generous, flowing silhouettes flatter all figure types. They are true and timeless investment pieces for one’s wardrobe.
   So, what about colour? After all, it is spring here in North America, and not only the Ipads should be attired in teal and vermilion. When choosing the most flattering gowns, celebrities the world over reach out to color consultant Jill Kirsh. She provides one-on-one as well as online consultations for international clients to determine the best colour palette based on the individual’s hair colour. She also customizes make-up to complement each client’s hair colour, skin tone, and wardrobe, thereby ensuring a uniform look.
   We had already shared our second better-for-you-than-yoghurt Effi Bar (this time it was coconut and cacao) when we started to explore the multitude of beauty products and services. Joey New York introduced their newest skin care product, This N That, a multi-use liquid to shrink pores and exfoliate; their Keep It Up, described as an instant natural facelift, is one of their best-selling products. Coconut water and ginseng, used in some Joey New York products, lift and tighten sagging skin and pesky jowls. The new Cellusanaskin care line rejuvenates the skin with the same stem cell technology used for burn victims. Cellusana looks forward to the launch of injectable stem cells, which eliminate wrinkles and other imperfections, without the use of paralysing toxins.
   EMK presented attendees with a gift of plant placental anti-ageing face serum with firming kelp and clarifying tea tree oil. Used together with their Supra night cream and their firming eye gel, we can look forward to waking up with brighter, more refreshed skin. The line has a devoted following in Malaysia and Dubai, where hot climates wreak havoc upon delicate skin. Our first whiff of Kuumba Made botanically infused organic body care and first-aid products brought back memories of the late 1960s and early 1970s, of bell-bottomed jeans, incense and free love. We were particularly drawn to the jasmine, white ginger and black coconut scents. The all-natural scented coconut oil relieves feminine dryness, and the vanilla-infused variety improves intimacy. And speaking of which, Matt Titus is the first nationally recognized male matchmaker to develop a fragrance collection. The YOU collection (also known as the Scent of a Woman collection) consists of three distinctive fragrances sold together, each with notes of fresh green tea, warm musk or feminine florals.
   Korean bath houses are becoming increasingly popular outside the Korean community. Men and women enjoy a variety of saunas, hot and cold plunge pools, and body treatments au naturel. Tikkun Holistic Spa is one of the better known, high-end Korean spas with heat therapy and infrared rooms that help soothe tired muscles and tense moods. The ladies of Tikkun are delighted to introduce Lucire readers to an indulgent cleansing ritual designed for our “lady bits”. One just sits on the specially designed ‘V’ treatment chair (‘A’ treatment for the boys), and allow the steam to do its thing. Afterwards, one retires to either the clay or the salt room at the spa to further detoxify and relax. A day at Tikkun is an all-day affair. Karen’s Skincare is the secret behind the effectiveness of Tikkun’s facials. In particular, the Advanced C and E Infusion Complex diffuses highly concentrated vitamins to combat wrinkles, age spots and sagging skin. Made in the US without animal testing, Tikkun’s products are paraben-free and customized for various skin types.
   Of course, time is ultimately a thief, and steals our youthful appearances no matter how carefully we take care of ourselves. Dr Jason Emer offers facial contouring with fillers as well as surgical and non-invasive procedures. Boasting clients like Sofia Vergara and Cara Delevingne, Dr Emer offers the Venus Treatment, guaranteed to lift and tighten one’s face, neck or body.—Leyla Messian, LA correspondent, with Elyse Glickman, US West Coast Editor









Leyla Messian

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April 13, 2015

Triumph launches animated Find the One film for the perfect bra, starring Hannah Ferguson

Lucire staff/15.03

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A departure from the usual approach of showing top models in intimate apparel, Triumph has launched an animated movie, Find the One (hashtag #FindTheOne), to promote the perfectly fitting bra.
   The two-minute spot, which will air from April 13 in Germany, the UK and Italy, evokes a romantic, Disney-esque style that many wearers will be familiar with, along with a memorable musical number entitled ‘Find the One’. However, instead of finding Prince Charming, the song is about the ‘life-changing experience’ (Triumph’s words) of finding the right brassiĂšre.
   The main animated character, Hannah (right), is based around Triumph and Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue model Hannah Ferguson, who appears in real-life form at the end of the spot.
   In true fairy-tale form, Hannah appears with her friends Tammy and Mara, who head to the boutique with her, Fred the Frog and the Fairy Godmother, who appears as a dress form.
   Stories AG’s Tobias Fueter and Yves Bollag were behind the animation and the characters. Fueter said, ‘Triumph is a fantastic brand for which to create an emotional story. Women easily identify with animated characters, which explains the success of animated fairy tales all over the world.’
   The score was composed by Tony Award-winning composer, Jason Robert Brown, with the vocal performed by three Broadway singers. The Prague Filmharmonic Orchestra performed the score.
   Eszter Szijarto, Head of Brand Marketing at Triumph, said, ‘It is really important for us to find new ways of bringing to life the bra finding journey so that we continue to inspire customers to go for a fitting and find the perfectly fitting bra—“The One”.’
   Through the spot, Triumph wishes to encourage women to look at getting properly fitted for a bra as part of its campaign, aiming to help 500,000 women this year.
   To celebrate the spot, Triumph is running an international competition for its customers, with the hashtag #animateme. The winners will receive an illustration of themselves in the animated style of the film. Details of the competition will be revealed on April 22 and will run through May 13.
   Ferguson wears the Triumph Magic Wire bra at the conclusion of the film. The innovative, award-winning bra features silicone instead of underwire, making it more comfortable to wear.
   Triumph’s Find the One page can be found at triumph.com/findtheone. Customers can visit a Triumph boutique for a fitting or book online.



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April 9, 2015

News in brief: Zen Hair Extensions pitch to the Coachella set; Almay’s Smart Shade Butter Kiss lipsticks

Lucire staff/3.26

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Zen Hair Extensions is tying its latest promotion to Coachella, which begins on Friday in California. It makes sense: if there’s a lack of showers and the days are especially hot this spring in California, then hair extensions will allow attendees to sport great hair through the festival with a variety of styles. The company sources from remy human hair—the highest grade of human hair, with the cuticles intact—giving a more natural look.
   Almay says its Smart Shade Butter Kiss lipstick collection has the perfect shade, with each colour developed to complement one’s skin tone. Each lipstick features jojoba, coconut oils and vitamin E, aiding hydration. The new range has 12 shades but, as you can see in the photograph, they manage to cover quite a lot of tastes. Retail price in New Zealand is NZ$14·95, on counter at Farmers and selected pharmacies nationwide.
   Finally, Pandora has announced that it has upgraded four of its US stores, at Bridgewater Commons in Bridgewater, NJ; Walden Galleria in Buffalo, NY; Ross Park Mall in Pittsburgh, Pa.; and Pheasant Lane Mall in Nashua, NH. There are new jewellery fixtures and a more spacious environment at each location, with their grand reopening events having taken place at the end of March. Pandora says the four set a precedent for its other US stores.

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April 7, 2015

Dove encourages women to see themselves as beautiful with new campaign; summit session announced

Lucire staff/21.08

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Dove wants to change the way women think about themselves with its new campaign, called Choose Beautiful. According to its 2010 research, 96 per cent of women do not choose the word beautiful to describe how they look. Its new five-minute film, shot in San Francisco, Shanghai, New Delhi, London and SĂŁo Paulo, encourages women to choose beautiful to describe themselves, to radiate their inner confidence and become happier.
   The film shows a building with two doorways: ‘Average’ and ‘Beautiful’. Those who chose the latter reported that they felt better, having made a statement publicly about how they viewed themselves.
   It ties in with Dove’s #SpeakBeautiful campaign to encourage women to understand how words impact on self-esteem and confidence.
   Dove will partner with Women in the World this year, a summit that brings together inspirational female leaders to discuss women’s issues. This year’s summit in New York, on April 22–4 at the David H. Koch Theater, includes Meryl Streep, Helen Mirren, Freida Pinto, Thandie Newton, Ashley Judd, former senator Hillary Rodham Clinton, Diane von Furstenberg, Barbra Streisand, Christiane Amanpour, Obiageli Ezekwesili (Bring Back Our Girls), author Elif Shafak, North Korean human rights’ activist Yeonmi Park, Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, Zainab Salbi and others. Dove will host a session on the 24th, ‘The Beautiful Brain’, discussing beauty and choice with Newton, Dr Stacie Grossman Bloom, Assistant Professor, Department of Neuroscience and Physiology at the NYU Langone Medical Center, and Dr RĂ©nĂ©e Engeln, Professor of Psychology, Northwestern University.
   The five-minute film is shown below, and Dove has set up a site on Tumblr.

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April 6, 2015

Lane Bryant redefines sexy with new campaign, shot by Cass Bird, styled by Kiwi Kat Neale

Lucire staff/17.23

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Cass Bird

Perhaps as a tongue-in-cheek reference to Victoria’s Secret, Lane Bryant, the US retailer specializing in fashion for women sizes 14 to 28, has released a campaign called I’m No Angel (with the associated hashtag, #ImNoAngel).
   Lane Bryant’s concept is to turn the old concept of what sexy is around, with the core message that all women are sexy.
   The campaign, which breaks in the US today (Easter Monday), features a series of TVCs and photographs by Cass Bird, with models Ashley Graham, Marquita Pring, Candice Huffine, Victoria Lee, Justine Legault and Elly Mayday, wearing Lane Bryant’s Cacique lingerie. New Zealander Kathryn Neale styled the campaign. It will appear at point of sale, Lane Bryant’s website, social media, billboards and on public transportation in the US.
   Social media users are invited to submit their own selfies to showcase their own idea of sexy, hashtagging #ImNoAngel, with the distinctive addition of writing the hashtag on a mirror.
   â€˜Our #ImNoAngel campaign is designed to empower all women to love every part of herself,’ said Lane Bryant CEO and president Linda Heasley. Lane Bryant firmly believes that she is sexy and we want to encourage her to confidently show it, in her own way,” said Lane Bryant CEO and President, Linda Heasley.

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