When I worked in an office every day I was deeply envious of the women who didn’t. Not because their free time allowed them extended lunches and spontaneous shopping trips, but because they arrived at parties looking immaculate, while I turned up at the same soirees looking smudged and bedraggled.
Setting out from home allows one time in front of an appropriately lit mirror. Heading out from the office means battling the basins, dressing in a stall and sorting out one’s hair in the shadows of a fluorescent strip beam. No wonder I arrived looking like a cross between Bertha Rochester and Boy George.
But it’s not just working women who struggle to look the part to party. Hosting a dinner at home and maintaining a matte finish at the table can be just as tricky with all that kitchen steam and no hair and make-up artist lurking by the fridge.
So with the festive season in full throttle, social demands aplenty and a new year pending, I thought it was time to find a day-to-night look that travels well, requires the minimum amount of retouching and will look good in any light source — regardless of wattage.
When the “red lips and nude face” approach was suggested by celebrity make-up artist Kim Jacob (she has created cosmetic ranges for FCUK, Boots and Bayan SPA), I wasn’t sure.
Neutral and chic with claret lips isn’t really me or possibly even you, but Kim put up a convincing argument simply by producing a photo of Louise Rednapp modelling the look.
Louise and Kim launched the cosmetic range Wild about Beauty this summer and together they offer everything from an illuminating serum to a Nutrilash Nourishing Mascara as well as lots of anecdotes about their friendship and love of natural products.
With years of on- and behind-the-scenes camera experience, I’m sure you’ll find their tips are useful and I have put together a list of products (some from lesser known, but brilliant on-line brands) that you’ll need to pull off the timeless look for that next party.