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Spring Outfit Inspiration for Men with Paul Fredrick

Spring is in full bloom and this time of year is synonymous with weddings and similar formal events that require a specific dress code. While it is easier for men to get ready to such events (let's face it, all they do is just change up their shirt and tie and they are good to go with any suit; at least most of the guys I know do this), it is still nice to change everything head to toe every once in a while.

Here are some outfit inspirations featuring pieces from the new Spring collection by Paul Fredrick, an online US fashion retailer for men.

What better way to welcome Spring than wearing pastels? Try a light yellow shirt with interesting light blue accents such as cufflinks and a tie then complete the look with say a linen navy suit. Opt for tan shoes and belt as they look way less contrasting than black and complement the chosen colour palette effortlessly.

For Sunday lunch in a nice restaurant, pair a v-neck sweater vest with a checked shirt in complementing colours with a pair of linen trousers and classic boat shoes. A hat is optional but will definitely earn you some style points!

Do experiment with your style and change up your looks - it's not a thing only women can do ;)

Makeup MAC!

Last Tuesday, I was invited to have my makeup done at MAC by their senior international makeup artists Michele and Roberta who flew in just for the occasion following Paris and Milan fashion weeks which have been a huge personal success for both of them.

I was greeted by Roberta and as soon as I sat down to have my makeup applied, Michele came forward and introduced himself while Roberta worked her magic. We discussed current makeup trends and the look they wanted to achieve on me. We settled on a fresh skin, natural look with the focus being the eyes which is very in right now and in Michele's own words he wanted to give me Audrey Hepburn eyes and he unarguably made my day!

photo courtesy of Kim, Sliema store manager

So, Roberta started by cleaning and prepping my skin and followed with the new Studio Waterweight Foundation (not a MAC foundation shade virgin anymore, yay!!) and some concealer. She then went on to give me very full brows which I loved (brows are something I am still struggling with so I really appreciated the tips). Next came some nude eyeshadow courtesy of Groundwork Paint Pot and some extra long, volumised lashes (Michele picked no. 34 for me) but since they were brown, they still looked quite natural.

For cheeks and lips, Roberta used So Sweet, So Easy Cremeblend Blush - an almost neon pink shade which I was scared of at first but the blended it into a very natural flash of colour. To finish off, Michele a coat of Money, Honey Dazzleglass on the lips and with what remained on the wand, he dabbed it on the centre of my eyelids for a glossy effect that is so in right now.

I was so pleased with how the finished look turned out, I didn't want to take it off! I am really glad to have met two makeup masters and have my makeup applied at MAC - something I will definitely consider if I have a special occasion coming up!

Have you ever had your makeup applied at MAC? What do you think of the final look? Let me know in the comments section below ;)

Event | Declaré & Juvena Beauty Seminars | Part 2 ~ Juvena

The day after the Declaré seminar, it was time to discover Juvena, a more luxurious anti-aging brand, also pertaining to Troll Cosmetics GmbH.

Once again, the seminar took place at Fort St. Angelo and Ms. Elke Praemassing was once again our speaker for the day. She introduced Juvena as the brand with 60 years of anti-aging research for the skin. In fact, Juvena was launched in 1954 with their first product being a light yet nourishing anti-aging cream. The name of the brand is derived from the Latin word 'juvenalis' meaning youthfulness. Juvena is also one of the very first brands to promote protection against the sun's  UV rays and in the 1980's, upon explaining the concept of free-radicals, Juvena came up with a Vitamin E cream. The brand's anti-aging expertise continued to grow and in the next decade, they launched a co-enzyme Q10 cream - establishing itself as a pioneer brand in the business.

Ms. Elke Praemassing

Moreover, Juvena has come up with SkinNova Technology which is basically skin care with a medical background, first developed by Jacqueline D'Amour and it is aimed at helping skin cells to regenerate and protect them whilst doing so. This technology has now evolved to SkinNova SC Technology, SC standing for stem cells. SkinNova SC Technology provides the ideal micro-environment to ensure the skin cells' optimal regeneration. This is the basis of all Juvena products. Juvena brand ambassador, Barbara Shett, an Austrian tennis player really embodies the brand's philosophy - she is sophisticated in her simplicity and naturalness.

The seminar focused on the Phyto De-Tox range which is made up of products that provide special detoxifying care by focusing on the skin's own detox systems. In doing so, Phyto De-Tox renews the skin and restores radiance.

To carry on with the detox theme for the day, we had a fun yoga session thanks to Hot Yoga Malta and food throughout the day was prepared by The Grassy Hopper, a vegan/vegetarian eatery. I must say I really enjoyed the banana and almond muffins, avocado sandwiches and energy balls. Unfortunately though, due to other commitments I had to leave prior to lunch time but I still managed to take a few snaps of the healthy food offerings!

photo courtesy of Paloma Cosmetics Ltd.

For more information about Juvena, you can have a look at their website. Juvena and Declaré are imported in Malta by Paloma Cosmetics Ltd.

Event | Declaré & Juvena Beauty Seminars | Part 1 ~ Declaré

This week, precisely on Tuesday and Wednesday, I had the pleasure of attending two beauty seminars showcasing Swiss skin care brands Declaré and Juvena respectively. I was really looking forward to both seminars and the event description on the official invites got me even more excited!

First off, the seminars took place at Fort St. Angelo in Vittoriosa - a majestic fort that stood the test of time as it's beginnings date back to the 1200's I believe. So, on the first day, we were presented with Declaré - a brand committed to bringing out the beauty of sensitive skin, and it is the brand I shall be talking about in this post. I will then talk about Juvena in a separate post.

The view from Fort St. Angelo with Valletta in the distance

Swiss international trainer Ms. Elke Praemassing presented both brands to us in a very passionate manner - she walked us through all the products and the brands' philosophy in extreme detail so without further ado, let's get right into discovering Declaré!

Ms. Elke Praemassing delivering the presentation (left)
Ms. Elke Praemassing, Maria from All Things Lady and myself 

As I stated earlier, Declaré is specifically targeted towards the needs of sensitive skin; and no matter what stage in life we are in, there is a product range for every age group as well as a range for men and a comprehensive sun protection line. Upon learning that Declaré is aimed towards sensitive skins, my interest sparked so I was really keen to get to know more about it.

Declaré was founded in 1978 and it is consequently the oldest brand on the market with each and every product in the range aimed at treating the needs of sensitive skin. The name Declaré comes from the verb to declare as the brand makes sure to declare all the ingredients found in each product so as to make it easier for the consumer to understand what it is they are putting on their skin. Being a brand with Swiss origins, of course, as one would expect, every product undergoes strict QC tests to ultimately yield the highest level of quality possible. One point that is interesting to note is that all claims have to be thoroughly tested by a panel of individuals with sensitive skin and only if all of them respond to the new products without any reactions, are the final products launched on the market.

The basis of all products by Declaré is the src-complex which stands for sensitivity reducing complex and is unique to Declaré. The src-complex aims to improve the skin's barrier and in doing so, it reduces irritation and actively protects skin cells. As I already said, Declaré has various lines to cater for different degrees of skin sensitivity but the main focus of the seminar was on the Pro Youthing range. We got the chance to try out the majority of the products during the presentation so we could feel their luxurious textures. Declaré products are from allergen-causing fragrances and parabens.

The Declaré Pro Youthing range is meant as an anti-aging prevention line and the scientists behind it have been awarded a Nobel prize for the research they did for this same line and as soon as it was launched, it received a SPA Award in 2013, specifically for the Youth Supreme Concentrate. Declaré market their Pro Youthing range as the dawn of a new skin care era as it is a line revolving around the promotion of healthy skin aging on a molecular level. Thereby, it is committed to protecting the cellular dividing process through preserving the cells when undergoing such a process. More information on the Declaré brand and products can be found on their website.

What made this event unique? First of all, the setting was a stunner in it's own right, then came the food - freshly baked goods for breakfast (I help myself to a fragrant croissant and orange juice), salmon and cream cheese sandwich as a light snack, and then came lunch - a feast of flavours with molecular cuisine from Caviar & Bull. The latter is one of my favourite fine dining spots on the island and they really did a great job at preparing some molecular cocktails and healthy dishes - I opted for some cheeses, a slice of multi-seed bread, some cold pasta salad and a fruit and walnut salad. The molecular foods really tied in well with the molecular skin care theme!

For the last part of the event, we were given a demonstration with the skin analysis machine and the beauticians in attendance were shown how a Declaré cabin treatment is carried out. Unfortunately I couldn't stay till the end of the event but I did manage to get my skin analysed and I am happy to know my skin is aging well :)

I have already started testing out the products given to me and look forward to share my thoughts on them with you all!

Have you ever tried Declaré? What do you think of the brand? Leave your comments in the comments section below!

More pictures from the event can be found on my Facebook page.

Review | Teoxane R[II] Eyes RHA Advanced Eye Contour

Good morning loves :) If you follow me on social media, you would know that I recently got to know the skin care brand Teoxane up close and personal and for the past month or so, I have been religiously using their R[II] Eyes RHA Advanced Eye Contour.

First things first, if you are still new to Teoxane, you can read more information in the brand introduction post I had written following the event or you can also check out the website for more details.

With that out of the way, let us have a look at the packaging of Teoxane R[II] Eyes RHA Advanced Eye Contour. The product comes in a very clean-looking white box with touches of silver and teal, the same colour scheme being repeated with the actual product. The eye contour cream itself is presented in a sleek tube that is the same colours as the box and it comes with a metal applicator that resembles a flattened out doe foot through which the product comes out. Sadly, mine broke off when I accidentally dropped the product but I am still able to use the product, just not the metal applicator.

Teoxane R[II] Eyes has a beige tint to it that gives the eyes a brighter appearance and combats dark under eye circles. It does not provide any coverage whatsoever though as it is intended as a skin care product. Apart from dark circles, Teoxane R[II] Eyes also targets puffiness, fine lines and wrinkles. 

I like to apply the product morning and evening after I clean my face and after a month or so of religiously following this regimen, I am happy to report that I have finally found a solution for my dark circles! In my opinion, the best way to apply the product is in a circular motion starting at the inner corner on the upper part of the eyes just above the eyelid, and working your way out and around the bottom lash line into the inner corner. It is best if you use the ring fingers to apply the product as it exerts the least pressure on the sensitive area around the eyes.

R[II]Eyes combines Teoxane's anti-aging complex RHA (Resilient Hyaluronic Acid) technology together with Dermo-Restructuring Complex and NovHyal (an active ingredient, the product of biotechology) to yield optimal results. Furthermore, the formula is enriched with active ingredients such as Escine and Hamamelis extract to provide an anti-fatigue action for the eye area.

I have tried many products that claim to reduce dark circles and they only worked for some time and my problem reverts back to normal after a while. With Teoxane R[II] Eyes, it is a different story. I have seen an improvement with respect to how dark my under eye circles were and while I cannot yet vouch for it's anti-wrinkle properties, I will surely reap the benefits of using such a product in due time. Moreover, the product is perfectly fit for use on sensitive skin.

Teoxane R[II] Eyes retails for €45 for 15ml of product and can be found at authorized stockists.

PR Sample

Review | Christian Louboutin Rouge Louboutin Silky Satin Lipstick

For my last birthday, my boyfriend earned a lot of brownie points for gifting me with one of the Christian Louboutin lipsticks I had been lusting over ever since I learnt they were to be released. I already owned the Rouge Louboutin nail polish so my boyfriend went for the matching shade of lipstick, which also has the same name, and has a Silky Satin finish.

Just like the nail polish, the lipstick comes in a lush presentation box - shiny and black all over with a red stripe in the middle all around it's perimeter. On opening, the lipstick rests in a plastic mould covered in soft, red felt. The lipstick is encased in the most exquisitely adorned metal case that definitely has some weight to it. The cap comes with a loop through which you can thread a chain or use the string that comes with the lipstick to wear the lipstick as a statement necklace, but with its weight I doubt anyone is courageous enough to let it dangle from their neck.

The inspiration behind the packaging of these lipsticks is Queen Cleopatra and her love of all things opulent and rich; this is what makes these lipsticks covetable objets d'art

The lipsticks are offered in three finishes - Silky Satin, Sheer Voile and Velvet Matte with each finish having a different case and cap to the other two. The colour selection is nothing out of the ordinary but there is your usual span of colours ranging from the nudes to darker, deeper shades. All three finishes of Rouge Louboutin come in a black case while all the other colours come in a gold case.

Rouge Louboutin Silky Satin comes in a shiny black case with what remind me of mermaid tail scales at the very bottom. The same design features in the silver part of the cap while the gold part has pointy studs all around. The inside of the cap is red, much like the red soles on Louboutin shoes and there is the Louboutin logo printed on the gold part of the lipstick case. There is no logo on the lipstick bullet and the colour looks matte at first.

I have to say that this lipstick has very good pigmentation and the colour does not bleed. It lasts for a good number of hours and I like that it fades uniformly to a stain all over the lips so you are not left with patchy lipstick. The formula feels very comfortable on the lips and it doesn't feel dry even after the colour fades.

Rouge Louboutin Silky Satin
just applied (left); after 6 hours (right)

Now I'm sure you know these lipsticks retail for a whopping £60 (roughly €85) which is way too expensive for a lipstick however, I still think they would make a nice gift for beauty junkies and Louboutin fans.

Would you buy a lipstick this expensive? Let me know in the comments below :)

Event | Vichy Dermablend [3D Correction] Launch

Last Friday, a rather chilly and rainy evening saw me excited to get to the Xara Lodge in Rabat, one of the most lavish settings on our islands for the launch of the newest foundation to join Vichy's Dermablend line, Dermablend [3D Correction]. I have to admit that I was really excited and curious to see what it is all about following my experience with Dermablend 16hr Fluid Foundation, so I braved the rain and cold and made my way there.

Upon arriving, a glass of red wine was waiting to warm me up, and of course, I gladly accepted it. We were then shown to the main red carpet area, where the presentations took place. Mr. Peter Apap, one of the directors of Prohealth Ltd., made his introductions which were followed by a brief yet thorough presentation by Ms. Jackie Vella, the brand manager for Vichy in Malta. The event also marked the first year of Vichy Dermablend line in Malta.

Mr.Peter Apap (top) and Ms. Jackie Vella delivering their addresses and presentations

Here is a brief introduction to Dermablend 3D. If you are familiar with the Dermablend range, you would know that is aimed at being more of a solution to a better quality of life and self-esteem.  It all started in 1981, thanks to Dr. Craig Roberts, who created a full coverage foundation with high tolerance to help improve the appearance of skin suffering from a variety of skin conditions. We all know how important and what a confidence boost it is to look and feel good, and for this reason, Dermablend has proven to be the perfect solution for people suffering from vitiligo, rosacea, dark spots, angioma, birth marks, scars, etc. Moreover, Dermablend provides a natural finish despite its full coverage - something not many foundations have mastered yet.

Apart from skin discolouration and uneven tone, one of the most common skin problems is acne, where the individual usually presents with raised, red pustules and pimples that are otherwise very difficult to cover up and still have a natural look. For this reason, Dermablend 3D was introduced.

This foundation, with its whipped cream texture, is capable of turning 3D imperfections into 2D in three steps - cover, level, treat. The foundation is composed of purified minerals that give it an airy texture and permit it to cover imperfections while maintaining a natural finish. Dermablend 3D is also the first foundation that is capable of levelling the skin surface immediately and day after day thanks to its Alliagel Technology (resurfacing gel mix). Lastly, Salicylic Acid and Eperuline contribute towards treating the spots.

Next, it was time for Ms. Allison Depriestre to work her magic on her three models for the night - we got to see how acne is completely covered up with Dermablend [3D Correction], full coverage of vitiligo where she also used the Dermablend Concealer Stick and lastly, we got to witness the last model's secret; she rubbed some Purete Thermal 3 in 1 Cleanser on her arm and shoulder, and two tattoos were revealed! Yes, the Dermablend Total Body Foundation, even covers up tattoos!

Tattoo cover-up

A reception rounded up the event where me and fellow blogger  Maya enjoyed sampling this innovative foundation texture and other products from the Vichy Dermablend range and we even had a Polaroid taken ;) I am really looking forward to give this foundation a go asap!

Vichy Dermablend [3D Correction] is available in 4 nuances and will be for sale in pharmacies. For more information, go like the Vichy Facebook page.

Vichy Dermablend is changing the colour of the tubes, and all products in the range will now have a black tube instead of white.

Flormar Cosmetics | Haul & First Impressions

A couple of weeks ago, I finally found some time to visit the recently opened Flormar store in Paola along with my makeup partner in crime, Marija.

The shop is very centrally located and we didn't have any difficulties finding it at all. I really liked the store setup - all sleek and very professional looking and the colourful products really stand out against an all black background. Having said that, lighting in the shop is very good even if you want to try, say, a foundation shade. After ohhing and ahhing over all the beautiful products, I settled on a few picks to try out the brand.

I have used most of these products already and thus I can share a few first impressions. Starting with the nail polishes, so far I have used three out of the four nail products that I got and two of them fit this year's choice of Pantone Colours of the Year, Serenity and Rose Quartz. I think I nailed the shades with Italian Travertine (pink) and Cookie Monster (blue) which were just €2.95 each. I have also been loving the Calcium Gel Base Coat (€4.50) as my nails have really improved in strength now that I have switched to it. Now I look forward to see how the CC polish performs. The latter was one of the products that really stimulated my curiosity and I was happy to see it comes in different shades of nude to match every skin tone. I have the shade 004 Pure Beige and again this was €4.50.

I also got the much hyped about MatTouch Foundation and I could immediately see what the hype is all about as soon as I tried it in the store. I got the lightest shade, M308 Fair Ivory which is still a tad too dark for me but I made it work with some lightening drops. The foundation offers high coverage so I do recommend a light hand with it as it can look cakey. Building up coverage is key with this foundation so do take your time blending it in. I'm a big fan of the frosted glass bottle too as I think it adds a touch of sophistication, also the pump dispenser makes for easier control over the amount of product you pump out. This foundation costs €12.95.

Next, I have the Twist Up Lipstick in the shade Raspberry (€7.95) and this is probably my favourite product from the whole haul. I like the concept and colour as well as the colourful packaging though I would have preferred if the lipstick went all the way down so as not to damage it when replacing the cap. This lipstick lasts for a good number of hours and it has the same vanilla smell as MAC lipsticks.

Another exciting product is the High Performance Rotating Volume Mascara. As the name implies, the mascara starts rotating at the push of a button to give you more volumised lashes. I really like the novelty of it and I admit I am always excited to use it!  I like the results with this mascara and even though it is not waterproof, it does last me throughout the day. At €15.95, it is the most expensive item in this haul.

Lastly, I have a limited edition (?) Dazzling Eye Shadow (€9.95) from the Fatal Attraction collection. I got the shade 05 Action which is a sort of metallic brown with burgundy undertones. I really like the outer packaging of this eyeshadow with the felt design and the houndstooth embossed motif in the eyeshadow pan itself. I'm not keen on the actual packaging though cos it looks a little cheap. The pigmentation of this eyeshadow is insane! The same can be said for the lasting power so I am really happy with it.

Overall, I have formed a very good fist impression of Flormar and will be returning there soon as I already have my eyes on a few more pieces. If you haven't already, I encourage you to go pay the store a visit and I can assure you you won't be disappointed. The staff are really helpful and that completes a fantastic store experience!

Flormar is located right opposite Sunlab in Paola, next to Eurosport in Antoine de Paule Square. Also, don't forget to like their Facebook page to keep updated :)