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Tuesday, 8 March 2011

Making It Up As I Go Along

The nice Illamasqua lady sent me a press release the other day for their new Spring/Summer make up collection, called Toxic Nature.  They must have seen my garden. *

It got me thinking about how make up can be such a morale booster. Well, it is for me.  Probably not such a comfort if you come home early one day to find your husband in Mac lipstick and Nars Orgasm (it's a blusher, ok) wearing a nice little frock and fishnets, but heck, it takes all sorts.

A trillion years ago when I was a trainee lawyer in a big City law firm,  6pm was the witching hour. This was when predatory qualified  lawyers would prowl around picking off any stray trainees who had not been fleet of foot enough to skedaddle, and drag them into their lair to proof read a few hundred pages of some bond documentation.  Now and again,  I would get caught, and then a long,  fun-packed evening of typo spotting and trying not to fall asleep while another trainee droned their way through section 138, default by bondholders etc., lay ahead.  

If we were really lucky, we might be released for 20 mins to go have supper in the staff canteen before returning to our task.  The canteen in the evenings was scary - just a few solitary pale young men stoking up on hamburger and chips before putting in another 98 hours at their desks.  Actually that's where Mr B used to eat every night.. 

One such evening when I was sulking at my desk, a very beautiful Chinese lawyer dropped by for a chat.  She was working late too.  She was terribly glamorous, with long silky black hair, wore elegant suits and silk blouses and her lipstick was a soft pink.  And she mentioned how, when she had to stay late, she always put on some lipstick and perfume, because it lifted her morale. I have always remembered that.   And I do find a bit of slap application is curiously relaxing, a bit of escapism. Just taking time out and feeling that you and your face can face the world again, afterwards.

Mind you, not sure the  insects in the hair look would go down too well in the City.  Or at the school gates.

The one thing I don't like about make up is what happened to me recently.  I looked in the mirror and saw a washed out, tired middle aged woman. Oh well, I thought to myself, I will look much better once I've got my make up on. 


On the subject of make up, I have discovered  (through Hestia's Larder which I love and is on my blogroll)  a blog called Facegoop.  This is a beguiling mix of humour and make up/beauty reviews, in the form of a dialogue between 2 friends.  Do go visit, it's fun and informative.

So, Illamasqua. I am still loving my red lipstick in Box.

I might be tempted by one of their Toxic Nature lipsticks or lipglosses.  They have a Flagship Store in Beak St, Mayfair. They may want to bolt down the testers in readiness for a Blighty visit.

Even cars look better with a bit of cosmetic enhancement.  Saw this one yesterday.  How cute!

*Please note that no payment or products were received by me from Illamasqua for this post.  Not even the teeniest weeniest sample. The meanies.  But hey, I live in hope.


  1. I am at the age where I probably should make more of an effort with make-up but I'm a bit crap at it. Isn't Illamasqua something to do with Dave Vanian from The Damned?

  2. I have just googled and see he is one of the creative team, thank you for telling me, Mr B used to like The Damned (I leant more towards Abba).xx

  3. I've seen those carlashes too! I want to order a pair and put them on my dad's truck for April Fools day.
    Those make-up looks were a little scary...not sure what they were going for. I do completely understand how a little make-up and scent can perk one right up and feel your pain upon seeing yourself made-up and looking less than fabulous. That's the worst!

  4. I think my mini, Alice, would look magnificent with eyelashes. I might get some.

    Thanks for the comments about m'blog, cheque's in the post ;-D

    I cannot, WILL NOT leave the house without my eyebrows penciled on. They used to be absolutely fine, but then middle age got me and they just got very...sparse and pale.

    I look like someone has bleached me.

    Of course, that could have something to do with the rampant anemia...I choose to suffer the pale, wan knackeredness because the alternative is iron tablets and hernia-causing constipation. Which brings its own blush to your cheek, let me tell you.

    Looooove you!!!!!!!

    Ali x

  5. Blighty, you live in the country of Lisa Eldridge - I started following a few of her advices and it is like a make over, using the stuff I had used before, but differently.

    I am not sure, does Ilamasque do Fiona's make-up? (Fiona as in Shrek). Confused ...

  6. Dear Mrs Blighty, Illamasqua have gone a bit rococo, haven't they? They even have the mandatory momento morí. Bound to make anyone feel old and if makeup is applied as recommended quite frightening to small children! Mind you, I sometimes feel that unless I pay strict attention to what I look like I will soon be on that terrible slippery slope which will lead inevitably to blue rinses, whiskers and that horror of horrors: the elasticised polyester tapered trousers in a pastel shade. Must go and reapply lippy immediately. However, on a happier note, please tell how you gained the attentions of Mr B in the staff cafeteria. I love a love story. Lindaxxx

  7. hi blights,

    i am no glamorous chinese lawyer but i do the same and i always have. i do it all day long to tell you the truth. all day i slave over people helping them to look better and then i take a look at myself in the mirror and gasp. so i'm always applying red lipstick and spritzing my face with rosewater. it really does help pick myself up.


    ps - louise has warned me to not believe a word you say about your appearance. she says you are beautiful and quite elegant. i believe her.

  8. The hint from your lawyer friend is a great reminder to take care of ourselves...

    I look ghastly without lipstick as my lips have become skinny and thin so I try to reapply lippy a lot...

    I don't know where you found the photos... they are pretty artsy and weird!

  9. Oh those carlashes! you just HAVE to find out where we can get those, pleeeze. I'm a girl with custom- made floral chintz slip covers in my car- I simply MUST get some lashes- if for no other reason than to see my son's face when I pick him up at school :)


  10. Hahahaha love the 'dahlings I already had my makeup on'! This line gave me a good belly laugh Blights. I'm becoming ever more convinced that as I age my makeup routine is needing to be ramped up a notch or two.
    I cannot leave the house without at least blush and lippy even if it's just to the letterbox.
    Will check out facegoop now.

  11. Blighty, you're back!

    I miss you when you don't post but I understand that Small Boy Wrangling is a time consuming occupation.

    I know just what you mean about the slap. Can't contemplate going outside without it; even at the (relatively) tender age of 34. I think this is a throwback from teenage years when I was not confident with my skin and mum showed me how to use make up to disguise it.

    Still, I like that it is a form of self-care (soin as the French say. I like to be soingee).
    Perfume does it for me too. I keep it in my desk for a lift. Have to watch out for the predatory lawyers though!

    Pip pip. x

  12. I'm really taken by the Illamasqua look. Sort of drag queen meets Heidi or Cirque du Soleil on crack? I do like a bit of drama though and Nars Orgasm is my favourite (I wish it was my husband's too, just quietly).

  13. loved this blog post!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    During WW2 women in factories who wore lippy had better morale-suits me xxxx

  14. At least you lovelies have an acceptable excuse for hiding perceived faults. Us poor lesser mortals have to face our cabbage patch kids good looks every morning, unless the hangover has closed the eyes completely. I take relief from the obvious anyway I can

  15. I can promise you this, break your back, and make up is absolutely the last thing you thing about.
    I'm in a meany, cranky, whiney old duck mood, hospital was so much more comfortable. You should see the pill nazi regime going on here at home.
    And Unless I go out, which is once every 3 days for one hour coffee, I/m still in pjs with the damn brace on.
    LOuise - stop bring so grouchy, this is a fun website, what can I tell you that's fun - oh - we are trying to find a better adjective for James. used to be little, (based on his age a long time ago), but he's 24 now, I was using Adorable, but worry about the sort of predatory female that might attract,my Annie - Your Anne-Marie suggested Juicy James.
    'Send suggestions please.

  16. I'd never heard of this brand before - what a revelation. I love the photos (makes such a change from 'pretty') and the product looks amazing. I used to love the Damned - Machine Gun Etiquette was never off my turntable! I'm going to check them out... hums Curtain Call....

  17. A trillion years ago, I had a temp job in London proof reading legal documents ALL DAY in a tiny office with a very old gentleman. It would have taken more than lipstick and perfume to perk me up - maybe a young gentleman... Three weeks was all I could take.

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