Finally, a beauty guide that’s witty, wise and most importantly, truthful! Ex make-up artist and Guardian beauty writer Sali Hughes has written Pretty Honest, a no-nonsense beauty book for real girls, covering everything from ‘Salon Etiquette’ to ‘Showing Some Skin’ and ‘Beauty in Illness’. We caught up with the lady herself to hear more…
What is it about beauty that you find so compelling?
Your face is the first thing anyone sees, it’s how the world identifies you from another, it’s how you express your emotions and attitude. And it’s something we can enhance, decorate, use as an extension of our personal style. How can anyone not be compelled by that?
What’s the one piece of make-up you can’t leave the house without?
I know most women would say mascara, but personally, I’d find it very hard to choose between concealer and blusher. The simple fact is that everyone in the world looks better with concealer. It brightens dark circles, covers blemishes, evens out skin tone. It’s genius. And I can’t be without blusher either. It is the fastest way to look pretty, sexy and healthy.
What inspired Pretty Honest?
I wanted there to be a beauty book about real life, because it simply didn’t exist. I wanted chapters on how to look nice when you feel like complete crap, what to pack in your handbag for a date that might result in a sleepover, what to always keep in your work desk drawer for emergencies. I also wanted women who loved beauty to be told that it was perfectly OK for once. I’m sick of women with a passion for fashion and beauty being talked down to, treated like idiots or traitors to feminism. Both are perfectly valid pursuits and should be celebrated intelligently and unashamedly.
What’s the best bit of beauty advice you’ve ever been given?
“Always be ready to go on the adventure”. My grandmother told me this was the reason she wore make-up – so she was always ready to accept a lovely invitation, to go where she pleased, to feel her best while she was there. I was only six but it completely resonated with me. I still feel the same way.
What one beauty tip would you give to Topshop fans?
Just do it. Wear the red lipstick, put on the orange eyeshadow, dye your hair pink – who the hell cares what anyone thinks? This is your face, your style, your life – and it’s all over way too fast to be playing to other people’s expectations.
Do you have any Topshop beauty favourites?
The Face foundation is quite simply the best high street brand foundation I’ve ever tried. I was lucky enough to try it a few months before launch and it took me completely by surprise. It’s marvellous. I also adore Topshop brushes. I use them heaps for work.
Any career advise for blossoming beauty writers?
Writers write, so get on with it. Start a blog and work out what’s going to make you different. I get lots of young writers email me and ask for work, but they make the mistake of trying to sound like me. I’m much more interested in people with their own voice, their own distinct approach and personality. Work out what makes you different and keep it in mind at all times.
Pop’s most outspoken girl is back! Lily Allen is taking her latest album ‘Sheezus’ on the road this November and we’ve got five pairs of tickets to give away. How to get your hands on them? Simply look out for the daily Lily Allen tweet on Topshop Twitter and retweet for the chance to win a pair of tickets to a venue of your choice.
Check out Lily’s full tour dates below and read the terms and conditions here.
LILY ALLEN UK TOUR DATES 2014
Glasgow 02 Academy, 22 Nov 2014
Sheffield 02 Academy, 23 Nov 2014
Manchester 02 Apollo, 25 Nov 2014
Birmingham 02 Academy, 26 Nov 2014
Brighton Centre, 27 Nov 2014
Plymouth Pavilions, 29 Nov 2014
Portsmouth Guildhall, 30 Nov 2014
London 02 Brixton Academy, 12 Dec 2014
Edinburgh Hogmanay 2015 Concert In The Gardens, 31 Dec 2014
Leopard print a staple in your wardrobe? Us too! But this trend goes way back. From ’50s pin-ups to ’90s music vids, we’re paying homage to the perennial print with our ultimate leopard-loving icons.
1. ELIZABETH TAYLOR
Leopard print first became a ‘thing’ in the 50s, when Dior debuted his printed ‘Jungle’ dress on the catwalk. Cue Elizabeth Taylor rocking leopard spots with everything, even on the beach in this killer one-piece.
2. DEBBIE HARRY
Leopard print gets punk! The Blondie frontwoman was a fierce advocate of wild prints – think skin-tight leotards with her signature red lips and rebel attitude.
3. SHANIA TWAIN
We’re guessing you watched this on repeat when it came out in 1998. Leopard coat, crop top, trousers, platforms AND matching travel case too much? Not for Shania Twain…
4. MEL B
Scary Spice was fiercer than any leopard in the wild – catsuits, bralets and those platform buffalos made her leopard looks iconic.
5. ALEXA CHUNG
Today’s leopard queen? It’s got to be Alexa. Whether it’s mannish tailored coats, lace-up brogues or a Topshop mini – she nails it every time.
It’s nearly time for Notting Hill Carnival which means we’re gearing up for two days of out-there costumes, great music and of course some serious dancing! To get us all in the mood, who better to chat to than one of its coolest dancers? Zizi Scandal (real name Aziza Jones) is the 21 year old star from dancehall crew The Heatwave, whose Hot Wuk parties are one of the hottest at Carnival every year!
Hi Zizi! How did you get into dance?
I have always danced as a child, but I never pursued it professionally until I met The Heatwave at Notting Hill Carnival in 2011!
Can you sum up your dance style in three words?
Provocative. Fun. Energetic.
What are you most looking forward to about Carnival?
I’m so excited to perform on the Red Bull stage with the rest of The Heatwave crew!
What will you wear?
On the morning I’ll be heading up one of the trucks as part of the parade, so will be rocking top-to-toe white to represent the Angel of Hope. And for my Red bull performance… you’ll have to wait and see.
What’s a Heatwave party like?
It’s a party where no-one behaves!
What’s been the best place you’ve danced apart from Carnival?
The one that sticks out is our boat party at Outlook festival in Croatia. It was epic. Hundreds of people in the middle of the ocean with nothing around you but sea, good music and a boat full of people ready to party till the sun goes down. Words cannot describe!
How would you describe your look?
I don’t really have a look. I have a billion looks! I wake up in the morning and dress however I feel. Vintage, punk rock, current fashion, tomboyish whatever!
Who’s wardrobe would you love to trade with?
What does the future hold for you?
I want to travel the world just living life on the go, exploring new countries and cultures. That would be so perfect.
Packing your rucksack for Wilderness? Off to your best mates wedding? Whatever you’re up to this weekend, make sure you do it with a killer hairdo, courtesy of these gotta-know hair shops in London.
Best for a cut? BUTCHERS SALON
The stylists at Butchers Salon are seriously skilled with a pair of scissors and have done the ‘dos for many a high-end fashion shoot, not to mention all those celebs on your Pinterest hairspiration boards. Stylist Diana has cut hair for the likes of Alexa Chung, Daisy Lowe and Laura Bailey and even gave Pixie Geldof THAT punky crop for Vogue. So if you fancy a next-level cut to rival the stars, this is the place to get it.
Best for a pamper sesh? BLUE TIT
The guys behind Blue Tit believe that a haircut should be a whole experience, not just a transaction. And that’s exactly what you get at their branches in Dalston, Clapton and more recently Peckham. Each is beautifully designed with its own unique character, making you feel like you’ve just stepped into a boutique hotel or the coolest dressing room, ever. Relax with home-made smoothies (or something a little stronger) and enjoy head massages and luxurious treatments before getting a cut from their award-winning (and achingly cool) stylists. You’ll never want to leave.
Best for going natural? GLASS HOUSE SALON
Found in Hackney’s cool ‘n’ casual members club Netil House, Glasshouse Salon is a new fav at Topshop HQ. This slick Scandi-designed space offers all the usuals (cuts, highlights, dip-dyes and treatments) but everything is completely organic and natural. That means using products that are gentle, nourishing and far, far better for your hair. Lovely.
Best for a treatment? EASTON REGAL
Summer sun taken its toll on your barnet? Then get yourself down to Easton Regal for a Micro Mist Treatment pronto. After two deep cleansing shampoos, a super-moisturising treatment is applied to your hair section by section, before going under the Micro Mist Machine for 10 minutes while you kick back with the salon’s extensive magazine selection. The result? Hair that feels impossibly silky, moisturised and strong. The treatment’s benefits also last long beyond your next few washes, making it well worth the £30 price.
Best for food? HURWENDEKI
That’s right. Food. Hurwundeki is a hair salon-meets-Korean restaurant found in a quaint spot on Cambridge Heath Road. Granted this may not sound like the best idea… (surely hair and food should never mix?!) but Hurwendeki’s quick, expert haircuts paired with fresh Korean food somehow totally works. Still need convincing? The salon has been graced by a certain Kate Moss and the restaurant also counts East London icons Gilbert and George as regulars. Oh and the haircuts are £14 a pop! What’s not to love?