Category Archives: Fashion and Beauty

From ethical cosmetics to my take on style.

Minimalist Seasonal Styles | Autumn/Winter 17

September is all kinds of exciting because it’s about the time that layering clothing becomes appropriate again, there’s a whiff of festivities on the horizon but still the possibility of a surprise sunny day PLUS there are plenty of thunderstorms which is a great excuse to get snuggly and watch movies with hot chocolates. Perfecto!

One of the MOST exciting parts about Autumn/Winter is the curating of the AW Wardrobe – something I look forward to from about June (I work in ecommerce, where you’re always at least 1 season ahead of real life).

This year I’m all about getting that perfect set of combinations with just a few pieces – it’s all part of the minimalist journey. 

Here are some of they key pieces that are holding my styles together for the next 6 months:

winter

  1. Coat – River Island | 2. Jumper – F&F | 3. Jeans – Levis Mile High | 4. Check Scarf – Joules | 5. Grey Scarf (similar) – Zara | 6. Boots – Timberland (available in Brown here) | 7.Top – H&M (Similar) | 8. Tote – Radley | 9. Biker Jacket – Warehouse (Similar)

    They might be fairly basic but they’re also really ideal for this time of year as they can be thrown on without much consideration but still look like you’ve put some thought in. They also all layer fairly well, especially the blanket scarves, which double conveniently as an actual blanket. 

    In particular I love the Radley pocket essentials tote bag as it’s the perfect size for travelling, plus it’s wipe-clean and waterproof AND has enough room for an umbrella and spare pair of gloves, which is essential for autumn winter in the UK.

     

    The biker jacket and camel coat are both old faithfuls from 2 years ago, and the jeans are my buy-every-time failsafe for denim.

    I’m also loving grey-on-grey looks this season and am loving snuggling down in my (surprisingly snuggly  and fluffy) F&F jumper and Zara scarf combo for extra cosyness.

    What I especially like about these few pieces is that they’re all simple enough to work with eachother and any manner of other items. Add a few pieces of nice, simple jewellery and you’re away!
    Plus they’re all “investment” pieces that are good quality for the price (yes, even the tesco jumper!). I’m confident I’ll get at least a winter’s wear out of these items, and several more winters out of the coats and boots.

     

    What are the autumn/winter staples you’re excited to wear this year?

    Kitty

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Minimalism: Literally All My Makeup

beautyOh hi, it’s just me again banging on about minimalism & this time minimalist makeup.

A while ago I wrote about 6 things I don’t need – and that list included duplicates of makeup. That point lends itself pretty well to a whole new blog post in which I share all of the makeup I do own. This is that blog post.

These are all Cruelty Free products at the time of writing (see also my post on NARS). Many are old faithful products I’ve bought repeatedly, but a few are newish to my collection and are replacing several pieces of old clutter.

Primer: e.l.f Illuminating Face Primer – I find this gives a really nice shine/glow under foundation or even just concealer, smells delicious & is really cost effective (£7-ish).

Foundation: NARS All Day Luminous Foundation in Montblanc (NARS were cruelty free at the time of purchase) – I’ve used NARS foundations forever and they’re perfect for me, so I’m distraught to discover they’ll start selling in China shortly. Not linking because obvs you shouldn’t buy it any more!

Blusher/Bronzer: e.l.f Bronze Beauty Palette – This palette has 4 shades that range from a cool matte brown to a rosy tan tint, which makes it perfect to double up as a blusher. I use the top left & bottom right pans mostly.

Eyebrows: Sleek Brow Intensity Sculptor (applied with an angled brush) – The actual applicator for this product is insane, but the product itself is great. I just dab a little on to an angled brush and apply that way as it goes on neater.

Mascara: e.l.f Waterproof Lengthening & Volumising Mascara – This is a recent buy and it’s great. It’s about as close to a cruelty free dupe of Benefit’s They’re Real I’ve ever found, so for £4-ish I’m very happy with it. The brush is a little awkward, but it’s worth it.

Lips: I’ve always been fairly low-key on the lip front, but even I managed to throw a few things out. I’ve left myself with Burts Bees classic beeswax lip balm and a Body Shop Coral Blush lipstick, plus the last bit of a Laura Mercier berry coloured lip tint from back in 2012 which has been & will be my Christmas Lip Colour of choice forever).

Tools: Nanshy Masterful Collection & B. Precision Beauty Blender – I’ve had these items for years (dude, I clean them, it’s OK) and they’re great. I apply the primer & foundation with the beauty blender and everything else with a brush.

And although I’m aware this is a fairly wordy post, that is it for my cosmetics collection. Literally, there is nothing else that I own. Although the list is pretty long, I’m hoping the images will translate how little I have. It’s SO freeing!

Kitty

 

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Why NARS’ Statement on Selling in China is Bull****

lpb

Recently NARS caused cruelty-free chaos by announcing that, although it still really cares about being cruelty free & ending animal testing, it cares about profits more & has decided to sell in the Chinese market.

For those of you new or alien to the concept of cruelty free products, selling cosmetics & personal care to the Chinese markets means that, under Chinese law, the product must be tested on animals. So even if NARS don’t have animal testing performed on their ingredients or products for the European market, they must have the tests done for the Chinese markets – ergo the brand ceases to be Cruelty Free.

Inevitably when companies make a move like this, Cruelty Free advocates get mad & there’s backlash – kind of like there was on Twitter last week when the news broke.

NARS

NARS wasted no time, however, in posting a statement on their instagram claiming that, by making their products available to fans in the Chinese market they’re still being dead keen on protecting the interests of animals in the long run, and that actually they still do loads of good stuff. Good stuff is great, but why are they taking a step backwards?

Their post sounds kind of contradictory – they’re super against it, but only if it doesn’t interrupt financial growth? Hmm.
But here’s one of the worst bits – NARS could have always sold to the Chinese market from outside of China without compromising their Animal Testing policy. Chinese Law does not require companies outside of China to test products on animals if they’re shipping into the country – only if they’re shipping domestically from within China. See more on this here. 

I can’t honestly say I know about the cost/profit implications of selling as imported product vs selling domestically, but it seems to me that, if NARS were still concerned with not testing on animals, but also didn’t want to alienate their Chinese fans, then surely this would be a more ethical option?

Is it likely that their advertising opportunities would be limited/restricted/forbidden when selling from outside of China into China? Can anyone shed any light on why they’ve made this decision?

I have to say I’m disappointed that I won’t be able to wear NARS any longer, but I’m sure I’ll find a kinder alternative. Can anyone recommend one?

Kitty

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