posted by on Fragrances, L'Occitane


Cologne. I’m not referring to the German city, nor is it a subtle nod at Anchorman. Perhaps it’s a forgotten format but thanks to the French house of L’Occitane the good old-fashioned cologne is experiencing a revival with the launch of their brand new collection of colognes this month.

Inspired by the region of Provence there are three fragrances to choose from (one for women, one unisex and one for men) all fresh and light for warm summer days. Warm summer days…more like wet and windy as I look out of my window as I type this.

So how is a cologne defined? Well it’s down to the levels of essential oils in a perfume solution. Eau de toilette contains 6-10% essential oils, eau de parfum has more with 11-15% and cologne has the least amount with 3%-5%. With that in mind, the idea with colognes is to spritz generously which is helpful since L’Occitane have created a 300ml bottle at £37.

There are three colognes available: Eau Ravissante is for the ladies, helpfully in pink and a floral cologne of flower petals with citrus fruits, Eau Captivante for the gentlemen, in masculine green, an aromatic cologne of bergamot and lime zests and Eau Universelle Citrus Cologne, is the unisex fragrance in a neutral yellow, which I was sent to try.

With notes of grapefruit and bergamot it immediately hits you as a refreshing and crisp scent, so I can see why it’s been created with the summer season in mind. It’s not to my personal liking however, as I prefer strong feminine fragrances of a floral, spicy and sweet variety which linger on my skin.

A cologne is ideal for anyone who doesn’t like the overbearing scents from eau de toilettes and eau de parfums – this merely hints of a fragrance and unless you’ve never tried colognes then you may be disappointed with this collection.

Each fragrance is £37 each for 300ml, with handbag size sprays also available at £21 for 50ml and shower gels at £13.  To buy click here.

*PR sample*

OPI Beige-Jing


posted by on Nails, Nails of the Day, OPI


A few weeks ago, my company moved offices. Not far, just across the business park, but as moves go, apparently it was quite a stressful one. We are now sat in our shiny new offices, with a whole host of meeting rooms that have been named after Olympic cities. So now, I get a message asking me to meet someone in Barcelona, or to take some notes to Sydney. At first it was very exciting, and now I get worried when I get a meeting request for Beijing, as that’s the company auditorium and generally means something serious.

Enough blather and more about the nail polish. I really wish that I had seized the opportunity when I met Suzi Weiss-Fischmann recently to ask her that chicken and egg question – which comes first, the polish or the name? I firmly believe that it is often the name, especially in this instance.

Firstly, please forgive the appearance of these swatches. As you can tell, I must have been swatching something red or pink beforehand and have totally failed at actually getting that off my nails before embarking on this one.

I’ve never worn this as a full manicure, and you can probably see why. Beige-Jing is too warm for me and just does me no favours whatsoever. I do like the silver shimmer that it has as this makes it a little different from your average nude, but really, this isn’t all that good.

It applied well considering that this is now 12 years old, hailing from OPI’s Far East Collection. I think that this was actually rather pigmented and on the thick side. However, it’s so far from flattering on me that only the fact that this is now regarded as rare and hard to find has actually stopped me from selling it or swapping it away. I swear that there’s more money in a nail polish pension than any other stakeholder scheme these days.

Any way – time to go. Someone’s asking me to meet them in Athens.