The Beautiful Rachel Sin & Ottawa Fashion Week Spring/Summer 2011

Ottawa Fashion Week 2010 at the National Gallery is featuring the fabulous and stylish Ottawa native Rachel Sin tonight. Trained architect turned fashion designer Rachel Sin says ‘having a sense of style is a lifestyle.’ You have to surround yourself in beautiful things to develop a keen eye for good design. While fashion and architecture often inspire one another, Rachel began developing a passion for all things well designed in her studies, earning a Masters degree in architecture. This woman is smart and passionate and this is obvious in her line- if fashion can have beauty and brains, Rachel pulls this off perfectly and personifies it in her clothes.

A quick glance at Rachel’s beauty routine shows us that beautiful glowing skin is key. She cares for her skin and keeps it moisturized which is so important while travelling. Her perfume choices tell me she loves rose, a soft rose for day, and a darker patchouli enhanced rose for night. Elegant, as I think of rose when I think of those red stained lips. The neutral nail is a fave for her, and I think that would perfectly compliment her clothes. The hair and eyes from her collection are to die for and I cannot wait to see the show tonight! Thank you Rachel, for taking the time from your whirlwind day to answer these questions for us.

What is your daily 5 min beauty routine?
Since I travel so much, I shop abroad for all my beauty products.  Also, my beauty routine  varies depending on which city I am in.  It is incredible how much climate, water and pollution can affect your skin.  I love the Laneige Products and use the Hydra Solution Essence and Hydra Solution Cream daily.  I have oily skin, and the product hydrates my skin without clogging pores.  The Laneige Mystic Veil Foundation has SPF33 and provides great coverage without being too heavy.  I also always travel with a SK-II Facial Treatment Mask.  It’s hard to find the time to get a facial when you are on the go, so I use it the night before an event and it gives you an instant fresh look.

What are your fave products for hair, skincare, nail polish and others?  
My favourite nail polish colours for this season are a light gray by Essie called Playa del Platinum and a taupe gray by Essie called Chinchilly.  The 1950s style manicure is very now. I will be getting this nude on black manicure for my runway show.  

If you were stranded on a deserted island what is the one beauty product you could not live without?  
Probably my Carmex lip balm, I have a stick of this in every purse. 

Favorite perfume?  
Chloe for day.  Stella for night.

Who is your beauty inspiration/icon? Why? 
There are so many, but I would have to say Gwen Stefani is a favourite.  I was always jealous that she could pull off red lipstick with anything.  Then I found my shade of red and once you do, you never go back.  I was at the MAC counter, and the artist said “this is the red that every designer should wear” and this was the Matte So Chaud A69.  I thought it was daring to wear to a photo shoot and now I wear red lipstick with jeans and a t-shirt.  The new Armani Rouge 400 is another favourite; it is deep wine red with a glossy sheen.  Red is so much more fun, it adds that punch of colour. Now I feel naked when I wear nude.  I believe everyone can find their shade of red.

What spring beauty trend are you embracing in your new Spring Collection?  

What do you love about Spring/Summer?  I love that Spring Summer collections are always less conservative, I think it is because a woman can experiment more with her wardrobe.  In the summer, you tend to wear brighter and lighter colours, you take more risks and have more events to dress up for.  The new Spring-Summer 2011 collection is edgier and more sophisticated, look for the unexpected combination of feminine with an edge.  I love when studs or metallic details are added to a very feminine dress.  It’s a very rocker glam look, metallic details like sequins andshimmering fabrics are added to a soft, sensual fabric to give a twist.

What is the makeup/hair inspiration in your runway look for Spring/Summer collection? I always love the 1950s look, it is timeless, feminine, and will never go out of style.  On the runway you will see a modern take on the cat-eye and reinventing  simple yet polished up-dos. 

I Feel Like Purring in Cartier Panthere Parfum

I Feel Like Purring in Cartier Panthere Parfum



I recently found a bottle of this online- I suppose it is vintage as it is in a bottle style not available for quite awhile. I know this seller and he stocks an incredible array of vintage and hard to find scents. I remember when this oriental floral was launched, in 1986, because at the time I was obsessed with the Cartier Panthere watch. Which I wear pretty much everyday- Cartier jewellery becomes part of you, just like the perfume.


Of all the versions the parfum is my favourite. It has the strongest concentration of that magic 80s perfume ingredient that amps up the all the notes. Some kind of musk or maybe ambergris- whatever it is it gives the perfume a deep earthy richness that a white floral on its own could never attain. Add to those notes some smoky incense and a whisper civet to elevate this to a dangerously sexy perfume. The notes are a veritable laundry list of ingredients, but it is the middle floral notes that are to die for elegant and gorgeous- jasmine, gardenia, tuberose, freesia, orris, narcissus and ylang ylang. Seriously? Wow.
This is a madame going out to the opera kind of perfume and I feel like I should have red glossy fingernails and lips when I wear it. It starts out with a bang then just melts into the skin. The parfum or extrait is ideal as you only need a few dabs to last all night.  This is the perfect way to wear those 80s scents as opposed to spraying the air all around you and creating a cloud of fragrance that can frighten horses. Panthere parfum warms up beautifully on the skin, and the sillage stays close to the body, and invites you in to smell more. The tonka and vanilla add a sweetness that is practically mouth watering. It is the ultimate white floral perfume for cooler weather. When a dewy jasmine or gardenia just isn’t enough, Panthere ups the ante by making these flowers emanate heat when they hit skin. Meow.
Yes, Panthere is a visceral perfume experience. If you like a real grown up perfume not for the shy, then I recommend you track some down. I imagine there has been reformulation since the 80s as most of the ingredients in this perfume have been regulated or banned. I think the vintage eau de perfume would also be lovely, but since I stumbled upon this beauty I chose parfum. I got the 15ml ligne de voyage bottle, which is a small but heavy glass bottle that feels like cut crystal. Even the act of taking off the cap and dabbing behind my ear feels uber feminine. I’m sharpening my talons right now.

Daly Beauty Roundup

Here is the Halloween Weekend Roundup- have a lovely weekend! I plan to eat too many Reeses Peanut Butter Cups and of course, Rockets.

The Non Blonde is missing Mad Men as much as I am (honestly! what to watch!) and this week she reviews a really fun book, Mad Men: The Illustrated World by Dyna Moe. Great name, no?

Best Things In Beauty tells us why we NEED a Kate Sommerville Dermal Quench Treatment. Ok, where can I get this in Canada, I am ready to book a flight if necessary. Seriously.

I am totes swooning over Michelle’s hair transformation to the ombre look that is so very hot right now, along with the loose soft brushed out curls. SWOONING. And I want. You may want to linger over the photo of her stylist…just sayin’….

Fab Over Forty is encouraging my Chanel obsession with the gorgeous 2010 Fall Collection Les Regards Eye Palette. Wow, as always they do colour to perfection!

Temptalia has an open forum discussion: Have you ever splurged on a beauty item and regretted it? Moi? Oh boy. Yes. That would be my Guerlain Les Voilettes powder….oy. Reading through the comments I can totally relate….

Dane at Pere de Pierre is trying to empty our wallets with his delicious reviews of the stratospherically priced Amouage line….they are truly divine.

The Perfume Posse has posted their annual Top 10 of Autumn perfumes. These are not just new releases, but faves from now and way back when. What lovely reading!

OPI Tickle My France-y is Beautifully Nude

OPI Tickle My France-y is Beautifully Nude

OPI Tickle My France-y continues the neutrals theme. It is the perfect nude-pink manicure colour. When you want more than the ubiquitous sheer pink , that, while lovely and elegant, can be a bit of yawn after awhile. The main benefit to the sheer pink manicure besides looking clean and professional, is that it lasts and/or doesn’t show wear as quickly as deeper colours. This is proving to be less of an issue now that I am using Ms. Lippmann’s Rock Hard base-top coat combo, but I digress. We do like to have a manicure that we don’t have to obsess about, that doesn’t look boring, and that is stylish. Tickle My France-y does all of those!


TMF is from OPI’s Fall 2008: La Collection de France. It was one the first nail colours to go mainstream with the nude look that has become part of the cosmetic mainstream. My daughters and I say it’s our fave colour to get “mannequin hands” which just means that-clean-seamless-so-natural-it’s-almost-unnatural look. It’s pink but not too pink. It is beige but not a yellow or unflattering beige. It is a true “nude” shade and I bet a matching lip gloss would be amazing. I have worn two coats, which is still ever so slightly sheer, and three coats, which you see in the photo above. That manicure is six days old with top coat touched up last night. One of the great things about a TMF mani is the invisibility of the wear at the tips. It’s always clean, goes with everything and looks polished and chic. OPI is available at salons and beauty stores like Trade Secrets in Canada.

You’re a mannequin, you’ll always have work!


Lancome Miel Glacé is a Beautiful Blush

I’m feeling the neutrals this week….maybe it’s the lack of sunshine. I find something so soothing about nudes, taupes, soft pinks & peaches, and of course, beige. Coco Chanel said “I take refuge in beige because it’s natural” and I can totally relate. The soft natural look is always flattering and it is true that as we age (sigh) when it comes to cosmetics, less is more. It’s true. I’m with Coco on this. The truth is, I pretty much wear only neutral make up. So, I thought it was time to write about my number one favourite powder blush. Lancome Miel Glacé is the perfect color falling right in between peach and pink- almost terracotta but not as orange. And it is so sheer, it is almost foolproof. The kind of beige that looks good on almost every skin tone. Goof-proof.
The packaging is typical Lancome- a sleek and simple black and gold rectangular compact with a mirror and a small brush.  I probably won’t use the brush but it could possibly be used in a cosmetic emergency. The powder itself is very milled with what looks like a soft shimmer but I mean really soft. It is barely noticeable on the skin. According to Lancome it is oil free, oil absorbing and moisture balancing. Win, win and win! Healthy glow in a compact. A little goes a fairly decent way and it will be awhile before I hit pan.

It’s the perfect every day go to blush and very easy to apply. It has average lasting power- if I’m going out I have to touch up but I’m good for most of the day. I use a fluffy Sephora powder brush and lightly dust the apples of my cheeks and, voilà! I’m rosy cheeked with a perfect glowing complexion and ready to go. You know, pretty much just like this Breck Girl. Not bad for $38.00….

Daly Beauty Roundup

Beauty blogosphere round up! I found some fun stuff out there….for more great reading check my list of blogs. Love ’em!
Beauty Editor shows us the chic and pretty “Faux Bob” on models and gorgeous stars in real life- I’m loving this! Great tutorial too. Would you wear this look? I know I would.
Best Things In Beauty reviews the stunning Guerlain Kiss Kiss Strass lipstick in Rose de la Reine for Holiday 2010. I am swooning and WANT this. Guerlain does hands down the most luxe packaging and this lipstick looks like it lives up to that luxury! Must have…..

Karen at Make Up & Beauty Blog shows us swatches of MAC’s A Tartan Tale– the packaging is so amazing, the colours are sooo pretty and there are great step by step photos of the looks. Wondering if green eyeliner or shadow is ok for over 40? Thoughts?

Gaia at The Non Blonde asks the question To Prime or Not To Prime – do you prime? I do. Loves me some primer.

Beauty Geek says Bye Bye Cat Eye- Round Eyes for Spring- I think this is a pretty look. I like both but it is refreshing to see a different look. Seeing a little more make up UNDER the eye these days….

The Perfume Shrine talks about Perfumes That Attract Men & Smells Which Turn Women On. Your thoughts and faves? I totally concur about Old Spice. Always a win for me 😉 I am continually fascinated at the power of scent. If you are, this blog is a must read full of smart stuffs.

Anita at Perfume Posse gets vacelmpt and vents about retail pet peeves that get on her last nerve in Can We Talk I totally relate to all of these. What are yours?

Listening to David Carbonara’s “Lipstick” from the Mad Men Original Score as I read. Fitting I thought…enjoy and happy weekend all!

It’s Beautiful On The Dark Side of The Moon

Deborah Lippmann Dark Side Of The Moon is the perfect dark vampy purple burgundy. I adore it. This is a staple shade for any nail polish lover- everyone needs a dark vamp. DSOTM is so fabulously dark it becomes a neutral. It looks as fab with jeans as it does with a little black dress. I’ve been loving it as a pedi but wow, now I adore it as a manicure! Elegant and mysterious….
The real kicker with Lippmann is the wear and longevity. A friend told me that her manicurist told her (and so on…and so on…apparently everyone knows this!) that Lippmann formula’s are designed to l a s t  and be gentle on your nails. She showed me an almost black mani that had survived longer than a week. The long-lasting formulas of Deborah Lippmann nail polishes contain green tea extracts and protein-building biotin so nails stay healthy and strong. They feature Aucoumea Klaineana extract, a natural resin from West African trees, which is known to strengthen nails and prevent ridges for smoother, healthier nails. Bonus- they are also free of Formaldehyde, Toluene, and Dibutyl Phthalates. 

That Deborah Lippmann is an interesting person– did you know she is also a jazz singer? Love it. Her personality comes through in the incredible selection of colours in her collection. She has several celebrity shades as well- fun! I already have several more shades picked out…

I am out of Lippmann base and top coats so I just grabbed the dual purpose Hard Rock base/top coat in one. Wow, this stuff is fabulous! Glassy and strong and one of the keys to making your Lippmann mani last is to use all the products. I have used the Hard Rock with Chanel and it extends the life of those manis too. What I need now is the Addicted To Speed Top Coat as my friend assures me it is THE BEST. The Rehydrating Base Coat sounds like another must-have…
Beautiful Beauty Roundup

Beautiful Beauty Roundup

And here is the Daly Beauty weekly round up from the Beauty Blogosphere- enjoy!

BeautyExpose made me fall in love with the entire Fall 2010 Essie Nail Polish Collection. Merino Cool and Sew Psyched are on my must-get list for sure.

BeautyEditor tells us about the Bestest New Fall 2010 Scents to come across her desk- there is something for everyone in that list so be sure to check them out!

EauMG gives us a comprehensive guide to 2010 Best Dark Chocolate Nail Polishes. There is something in every price range from under $9 and up. Who doesn’t love chocolate….

ProductGirl is loving Trish McEvoy’s Voyageur travel make up set– be prepared for any beauty emergency, anytime, anywhere. This set has it all and I want it.

BeautyReflections shows us the perfect plum lip with Estee Lauder Pure Colour Gloss in Golden Violet. I like the gloss/lipstick combo and this colour seems perfect for fall.

The Non Blonde is speaking my language when she rhapsodizes about the Guerlain Meteorites Perles d’Or Holiday 2010 powder.…I need this. And thank-you, Gaia for listing my Jicky review on your round up…your review of Jicky was responsible for me trying it in the first place xo

Beautygeeks shows us how to make our eyes large and doll-like. Kind of crazy? Maybe. Magical, pretty and ethereal? Definitely.

FabOverForty has me wanting to head on down to Sephora and check out Tarte Cosmetics Matte Lip Stains. Paraben and pthalate free, they are made from at least 70% natural ingredients. Sounds FAB to me…

Best Things In Beauty shows us Bobbi Brown’s Bare to Bold Limited Edition shadow collection– wow these colours are gorgeous.

And here is a bonus beautiful photo of fall in Ottawa….in my backyard, to be specific….


Smooth Beautiful Hair by Living Proof

My daughter Brigit and I have been officially using Living Proof No-Frizz Shampoo and Conditioner exclusively for the past 3 weeks. Wow! Colour us impressed. I am still amazed at how when I comb out my wet hair I need no leave in conditioner spray or cream, and no smoothing serums. Seriously- this is a first. I had a few more highlights and lowlights done 2 weeks ago and that usually dries my hair out a bit necessitating extra conditioning, serum, detangling etc etc. Not anymore. Did I mentioned that I am amazed?
Brigit and I took the Straight Styling Cream for a test drive and we are both loving it. Again, I need to stress the lack of extra products used. 
For smooth straight hair I have always needed:
– deep conditioner
– leave in conditioner
– silicone serum/ Moroccan oil type product
– spray on silicone shine serum
– smoothing cream
Wow. Not low maintenance at all which explains my extreme laziness and refusal to blow dry my mop. No more! All I need is Living Proof Shampoo and Conditioner and Straight Styling Cream and my hair is soft, silky, flowing, smooth and straight. I still have a bit of my wave come through, which is fine with me. Public Service Announcement ladies- the pin straight, flat ironed hair look is OUT. It looks dead and unnatural, which is never a good thing. Pics are from my phone so not the best quality but  you get the idea… feels as a soft as it looks! Brigit had the straight blow dry but went to leadership camp this weekend. She was too tired for a blow dry and is curly today. But, they are smooth pretty curls!

Living Proof products are available online on the Living Proof website and on the Sephora website, and in Sephora stores as well.