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Laura Mercier Translucent Loose Setting Powder Light Catcher

Known for its makeup range that offers the perfect #wokeuplikethis look, Laura Mercier has done it again with a new setting powder that offers a candle-lit glow on the skin.

The new Translucent Loose Setting Powder Light Catcher is made to set makeup, and prevent it from shifting.

The perfect product to wear under your protective face mask, when you’ve got foundation, blush and contouring makeup on. (Why? Because sometimes, we need to look great when eating in public.)

This champagne colour -tinted powder – named Celestial Light – provides the finishing touch to your makeup routine.

It is also a secret weapon for when you need to take video calls: it does not leave a white cast or metallic finish on skin while blurring out imperfections.

Castaner Wedge Espadrilles

In Singapore where I live, the tropical weather’s all year round.

So we’re lucky enough to be able to live in pretty summer frocks 24/7.

And trust me when I say a good pair of espadrille wedges just elevates colourful cotton and linen outfits.

Image source: Instagram/ sofrench_bynaty;Main image – Instagram/ anindigoday

The best I’ve come across so far are by the Spanish brand Castaner.

Started in 1927, it continues to manufacture its espadrilles the traditional way.

Industry insiders even claim that the luxury labels rely on Castaner to produce their wedge espadrilles, most notably for YSL a couple of decades back.

Today, many high-end brands pair up with Castaner to produce limited edition collections; from Manolo Blahnik to Missoni and most recently, Paul Smith.

Also, it is no secret that Castaner has fans from the royal family; who are often spotted in the earth-toned shoes in the paparazzi shots taken in summer.

And for good reason: Castaners are so comfortable for wedges, and they elongate your legs with the ribbon ties at the ankles.

Inage source: Instagram/ castaner

They are very well-made for a reasonable price (S$150 onwards), long-lasting, and so versatile as it matches almost every summer outfit.

Image source: Instagram/ cumini

Perfect shoes, if you ask me; and I own more than 20 pairs of the cotton-canvas wedges in every colour. I also have a couple in calf and suede.

Image source: Instagram/ castaner_chile

As for the sizing of the shoes, I’d recommend you go one size down. I’m a usual EU 37 but wear size 36 for Castaners.

Enjoy, when you get your first pair. (And I’m pretty sure that like me, you won’t stop at one).

Kiehl’s Retinol Skin-Renewing Daily Micro-Dose Serum

While it is an effective anti-aging ingredient, retinol is notoriously difficult to incorporate into the skincare routine.

Because often, it can cause dryness, redness and even peeling of the skin.

Now, Kiehl’s has taken out the guess work in allowing you to effortlessly incorporate retinol into your beauty ritual.

Tapping a “micro-dosing” technology, Kiehl’s new Retinol Skin-Renewing Daily feels comfortable and gentle on the skin as it also contains soothing peptides and ceramides.

This new product can even be layered with other Kiehl’s serums.

Here’s how to layer it on, effectively:

1. Moisturising Toner or Essence

2. Other Kiehl’s serum

3. Retinol Skin-Renewing Daily Micro-Dose Serum

4. Face cream (go for a more hydrating one)

5. Sunscreen (skip this for the night routine, clearly)

Valentino Rockstud Caged Pump 65mm Review

“If the shoe fits, buy it in every colour,” someone once said.

They clearly knew what they were talking about.

It took me years and wasted funds to find the most gorgeous heels that allow me to walk around all day elegantly and in style, with no pain. So obviously when I found the one, I bought it in as many shades as I could afford.

And that coveted pair, my friends, is the Valentino Rockstud Caged Pump 65mm.

Perfect with denim

(source: Instagram/fashionaddict.5; main picture source: Instagram/moncheri.moni)

First launched on runways in 2010, the strappy, studded pyramid punk-rock heels look both decadently dangerous and feminine at the same time.

Designed by Valentino’s former creative directors Maria Grazia Chiuri and Pierpaolo Piccioli, the heels have an almost magical leg-lengthening effect and is now one of the most iconic on the luxury footwear scene.

Till today, it is a money-spinner for the label. Valentino continues to produce collections – from clothing, to bags and accessories – that hark back to the sexy Rockstuds.

If the shoe fits, buy it in every colour.

Someone who knew what they were talking about
The best part about shoes: Limited edition colourways

(source: Instagram)

Over the seasons, the Rockstud Caged Pumps have appeared on shelves in a plethora of designs, colours and materials. From flats and sandals to 100mm stilettos, in soft nappa, rugged grained calf, luscious suede, shiny patent leather, metallic calf, smart canvas, full-on sequins, sexy lace, and even rustic raffia.

The shiny and polished platinum studs usually come in gold or silver, and sometimes coated in matte black or powder pastels to match the colourways.

The style that I’ve found to be most comfortable, and on my repeat list whenever I want to complete a killer outfit, is the 65mm Caged Pump.

A stunning style made of grained leather

(source: Instagram/pppundita)

The easy height, open-heel, half-sandal style with a pointed toe is classic yet casual, so it elevates everything from boardroom suits to weekend rompers.

I find the 65mm even more alluring than the 100mm versions as it is simply easier to stomp around in, and has many more blindingly shiny studs. The triple buckle just adds to the appeal for me; even though yes, it takes more time to put on the shoes.

The Rockstud 65mm Caged Pump

(source: Instagram/mrs_thatmountain)
The Rockstud 100mm Caged Pump

(source: Instagram)

I could continue to wax lyrical about my favourite shoe, but the most critical thing you need to know about it is the fit. The 65mm Caged Pump is true-to-size. Important information; especially if you are going to grab a pair online to take advantage of end-of-season-sales and limited edition designs.

My feet are a standard size 7 (for reference: in Ferragamo Vara), generally a UK 5, and EU 37 for European shoe labels. The Rockstud Caged Pump 65mm size 37 fits me like a glove.

Sexy black patent

(source: Instagram/meganhess_official)

Next up, I’ll be reviewing the Rockstud Spike Nappa Leather bags, which are also a must-have. (They may be a bit of an overkill when paired with the Rockstud pumps, but nobody will complain because it’s a stunning combo.)

The classic Valentino nude shade that’s uber flattering: Poudre

(source: Instagram/ritta_im)

Beauty Gazette: More to come – Reports on Beautiful Fashion, Lifestyle, Retail

It has been five years since The Beauty Gazette was launched, and what an incredibly satisfying journey.

After I left my job in the media, TBG has been a great escape from the daily grind of my corporate career It is the perfect outlet for my observations of the wild and wonderful emerging in the beauty industry.

I love makeup, skincare, and all things self-care. Because if you can’t look after and love yourself, then you can’t really expect to have the best life you should be living.

If you can’t love yourself, then you can’t really expect to live the best life.


Like many of you, the pandemic has made me re-assess my priorities including TBG. What should I drop, take on and refine?

So I’ve decided that since the lines between beauty, fashion, lifestyle and retail are increasingly blurred, TBG will also cover these other forms of self-indulgence, going forward.

I’ll be sharing more on all things bright, shiny and beautiful.

On top of my posts on beauty trends, I’ll keep you in the know of my favourite tried and tested fashion brands and products, and regular retailers I go to for my shopping fix.

I’ll be reviewing everything from iconic shoes and coats from luxury labels to the most flattering high street denim pieces, and outfits that provide a high ROI.

Because the truly fashionable know that the best outfits are a mix of luxury investment pieces and regular affordable high-street ones (with the occasional vintage treasure thrown in).

So stay tuned to see what I’ve been keeping my eye on and adding to my shopping bag.

And occasionally, I’ll also be sharing my favourite fashionable hangouts where you can watch the beautiful people.

So stay tuned, and thank you for being a loyal reader of TBG.

Best Sunscreens To Buy

Summer or autumn, pandemic or peace times, the one skincare item that you should always have in your beauty routine is suncare.

If like me, you love hanging out on a sunny balcony, a bright spot at an outdoor cafe, or stepping out for a bike ride to unwind, never forget to slather on the sunscreen to slow down skin ageing.

Here are my favourite sunscreens that I reach out for on a daily basis.

They all have a few things in common:

  • Non-sticky finish
  • Feel lightweight on skin
  • Have high broad spectrum protection
  • Contain added skincare benefits (moisturising agents, anti-pollution ingredients, etc.
  • Multi-purpose (provide skin-perfecting illusion)
  • Work brilliantly as a make-up primer (just layer under foundation)

I’ve added hyperlinks to the list so you can go straight and buy them (no affiliation, btw).

Read More

Home Spa: Dr Dennis Gross DRx Spectralite BodyWare Pro

With quarantines, lock-downs, and touch-less retail and services being de rigueur during COVID-19, home beauty devices are a perfect addition to your beauty routine.

Clearly, these DIY grooming machines are convenient so you don’t have to trudge off to a salon.

Plus, it is much safer since you will not have to share any of the beauty tools and accoutrements with others, and be potentially exposed to the novel coronavirus.

Dr Dennis Gross’ DRx Spectralite BodyWare Pro taps on LED light therapy to provide anti-aging (red LED) and anti-acne (blue LED) benefits on your neck, decollete and limbs, while you’re chillin’ and Netflixin’.

The best part? You can actually mould the flexible device to your body so you get a customised treatment. Just don’t use it on your face (and eyes!) as the Bodyware Pro is not meant for that.

The device provides 3 options for the 3-minute sessions (red, blue or red + blue). There’s also a bonus option: a 14-minute red LED treatment to soothe muscle and joint pain.

The Bodyware is also incredibly easy to use: simple buttons and charging is done via a USB-C charging cord.

Ok now, a quick science lesson on LED lights:

The Light Emitting Diode (LED) were a sensation when they were first invented, and developed for the market through the 1960s to the 1990s.

Japanese engineers Shuji Nakamura, Isamu Akasaki and Hiroshi Amano were even awarded the Nobel Prize in Physics 2014 for the invention of the high-brightness blue LED.

It was soon discovered that not only were the LED bulbs energy efficient, high-performing, and great for plants, they also heal the human body.

The Dr Dennis Gross DRx SpectraLite Bodyware Pro, S$720, is available at Sephora.

Dress-up Your Make-up: Armani Beauty Cushion Collection

Imagine: a “wardrobe” for your cushion foundation.

Armani Beauty has gone to that level of extra, for you.

The My Armani to Go cushion case is now available in 4 designs:

The original glossy red case “Lacquer”, one with a sophisticated marble-like finish “Rouge Malachite”, the scintillating “Crystal”, and faux snake skin “Effeto Python”.

Oh and of course, lest you forget, the best part of the product is the cushion foundation itself, that provides long-lasting coverage and a soft glow, with SPF23/PA+++.

The cases cost S$40 each, and the cushion, $80, 4 shades to pick from. Available at Armani Beauty counters.

Aesop Othertopias EDP Collection

Aesop’s new Othertopias eau de parfum range is a poetic ode to the wild landscapes that inspired photographer/artist/nose Barnabe Fillion.

From the stormy sea (for Miraceti – a hint of oud, whiskey and incense), the rugged shore (for Karst – metallic salty notes, cumin spice, sandalwood), to the rustic country (for Eremia – white musk, yuzu, resinous galbanum).

Perfect for when travelling to strange lands is not an option for us during the pandemic.

The Othertopias range is in Singapore stores 5 Jul.

These are great additions to the others in Aesop’s unisex EDP range: Tacit, Hwyl, Rozu and Marrakech Intense.

All sensual, smoky, and bound to make heads turn.

The One with the Friends

The coveted Friends’ reunion that ran in May has inspired many to revisit the iconic 10-season series on Netflix.

Clearly, one other reason why Friends is trending (on Netflix) is obvious: many of us are still quarantined due to the pandemic.

With not much else to do, indulging in the good old Friends’ bubble is incredibly comforting. The jokes are timeless, the exchange witty with the righ dash of political-incorrectness, and comc timing is on-point.

And the fashion brands are paying attention to what the consumers want: Friends’ fashion.

High-waisted straight-leg jeans and bermudas made of sturdy denim, crochet, figure-hugging cropped tops, strappy dresses and knits fill the racks in stores (both on and off-line).

So here are snapshots of Rachel’s, Monica’s and Phoebe’s blowouts and makeup, for you to match the Friends’ sartorial trends.

Friends’ Rachel Green hair
Friends’ Rachel Green hair

Friends’ Rachel Green hair
Friends’ Phoebe Buffay hair
Friends’ Phoebe Buffay hair
Friends’ Phoebe Buffay hair
Friends’ Phoebe Buffay hair
Friends’ Monica Geller hair
Friends’ Monica Geller hair
Friends’ Monica Geller hair
Friends’ Monica Geller hair