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Tuesday, September 22, 2015

The Best of New York Fashion Week 2015

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Arguably One of the Most Beautiful shows at New York Fashion Week for Spring Summer 2016 was Reem Acra's Moroccan inspired runway show.

Here's why we think the collection was one of the best Spring forward trends for 2016 at last week's New York Fashion Week presentation.


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Gorgeous glittery prints, short skirts and plunging neckline rompers are the ideal summer staples for that sunny resort vacation.

Lovely, layered sheer silk dresses, an abundance of embroidery, beads and floral appliqués adorn gorgeous silk dresses with micro mini hemlines, nipped at the waist with wide heavily embellished fabric belts for that far east exotic appeal.


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Beautiful shiny metallic lamé fabrics were used to construct classic waterfall evening gowns. A remarkable amount of hand-done work could be seen on floor-length sequin dresses and a peony embroidered, see-through, delicate lace dress.

Highly acclaimed Lebanese designer Reem Acra who is known for wedding dresses has outdone herself to create opulent ready-to-wear casual and evening dresses.

Saturday, September 19, 2015

BlowPro Faux Dry Shampoo Review

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Have you ever had days when... you had your hair styled and don't want to wash it out?

Do you have long hair and live in a hot and humid country? If you have oily scalp issues, washing your hair too often - every day, can strip your scalp and hair of its natural oils and moisture.

Introducing dry shampoo from BlowPro New York. We were sceptical about the use of dry shampoo until we tried this brand out.

For a quick-fix, time-starved busy individuals like you can spend more time in bed or out and about with BlowPro's faux dry shampoo and conditioner.

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Excuse our blurry pictures but we were mad with excitement when these babies came in the mail!

Step 1: 

Simply shake the powder-form shampoo onto the roots of your hair.

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The dry shampoo ingredient consists of rice starch and is a white powder which can easily be inhaled easily if you are not careful during application.

The product does what it says and instantly absorbs excess oil from the scalp and hair. Hair feels lighter and cleaner after using it.


Step 2: 

Rake through your hair with fingers or comb through evenly until the product is distributed evenly throughout your hair. 

To finish, shake the dry conditioner onto your hair and style accordingly.

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The BlowPro faux dry shampoo is unscented while the conditioner has a very pleasant smell to it. There is a lovely smell from the conditioner that lingers on throughout the day.

The dry conditioner does tame frizzy hair and adds a slight shine. We noticed that blonde hair appeared lighter and slightly shinier with it.

The Verdict

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Ready! Set! Go! A fuss-free and low-maintenance high ponytail à la the off-duty hairstyle of Gigi Hadid.

Make-up look: 
  1. Smashbox Liquid Halo SPF 15 foundation in shade 9 used as a all-over bronzing effect colour
  2. Lime Crime lipstick in Unicorn
  3. YSL beauty eyeshadow palette in black as eyeshadow and liner

Thursday, September 10, 2015

Matilde Mourinho, Mollie King Style-Off

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Style-off: Matilde Mourinho on the red carpet (left), Mollie King on the side-walk in London (right)

English football club Chelsea manager Jose Mouriho's daughter is all grown up. Last night at the GQ awards, Matilde Mourinho wore a plunging tuxedo dress by Balmain as she stood awkwardly next to her dad.

Although she drew quite a bit of flak on social media for causing her dad to feel uncomfortable with her slightly risqué dressing, she carried the look off well enough to look just the right amount of sexy yet polished at the same time.

The 18-year-old spotted a tight top-knot bun and a black Tom Ford clutch.

British Girl Group The Saturdays member Mollie King attends a party in London for her first Notion magazine cover. Mollie is also wearing a black plunging V-neck dress. It is by the Australian label Finders Keepers. The singer had a more interesting combination as she paired her mini dress with a pair of sexy over-the-knee stiletto suede boots in a toned-down grey colour.

Although both outfits are similar, Matilda and Mollie are dressed for two very different occasions.

Which look do you prefer?


Image source: Dailymail.co.uk


Sunday, September 6, 2015

Giuseppe Zanotti Studded Fringed Over The Knee Boots

In this issue of Luxury for Less, we uncover a cool pair of over the knee boots that pack the rock and roll punch but are still suitable for everyday wear.

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Can you tell the difference?

Over the knee boots look here to stay and make a good transition from summer to fall winter in shorts or leggings.

Case in point are Fergie's Giuseppe Zanotti studded and fringe suede over the knee boots which she wore to Coachella this year while rubbing shoulders with celebrity friends Kendall Jenner and Hailey Baldwin.

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Get the less pricey version for less with Carvela Kurt Geiger's latest release for Fall winter 2015 - Whip. Kurt Geiger's over the knee boots has no tassels but just the right amount of suede fringes and cool whip-stitch design hence the name.

Both versions have chunky low heels and almond toes.

As both pairs of boots are in black and incredibly similar in design, our verdict is it doesn't really matter which pair you pick - we would probably go for the high-street version unless you don't already own a staple pair of black tall boots.

Which pair would you get and how what would you wear it with?

Thursday, September 3, 2015

New York Fashion Week Spring Summer 2016

New York Fashion Week's schedule for Spring Summer 2016 is set for September 10 to 17 with big names like Michael Kors, Ralph Lauren and Tommy Hilfiger gracing the event.

We can't wait to see our favourite model citizens Gigi Hadid, Karlie Kloss, Liu Wen, Ondria Hardin and Yumi Lambert walk the shows.

Here's our list of the top 3 fashion designers/ runway shows that we are looking forward to see next week!

1) Betsey Johnson

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Age should never dictate what you want to wear. Known for her fun, quirky designs, 73-year-old Betsey Johnson brings fun, joy and a powerful message to her fans - don't be afraid to be show who you really are.

Betsey Johnson's Spring Summer 2015 collection did just that - pushing out a strong statement on the runway to support gay marriage.

2) Tommy Hilfiger

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Rock and roll was the theme at Tommy Hilfiger's previous Spring Summer collection. Star-printed fur jackets and colourful star-studded or cut-out boots were the main highlight of the runway show.

The label is known for classic American designs with a slight twist when Tommy feels like it.


3) Anna Sui

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Anna makes the loveliest bohemian and girly designs that can't go wrong. Her Asian heritage gives her an edge over predominantly white designers in the fashion industry. 

Oriental and Asian prints in rich colours of deep burgundy red and emeralds are often used in Anna Sui's dresses and jackets.


Although DKNY (Donna Karan New York), Ralph Lauren and Derek Lam didn't make our list this year we hope the designers would surprise us with something more out of the ordinary than the usual staple basics.


Images: style.com

Monday, August 17, 2015

Burberry Beauty Fall Winter 2015 Collection

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Burberry's Fall Winter 2015 make-up collection was inspired by their Fall Winter runway show which was full of earthy brown, red and green hues. The grunge rock meets hippie runway collection featured patchwork suede over-the-knee boots, plenty of floral prints, leopard prints, knit cardigan jackets and fringe ponchos.


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Backstage beauty with Burberry

Make-up was kept to a bare minimal for a "natural" look at the Burberry Prorsum runway show. Bronzer was used in place of blusher for a healthy glow all over the face. Lips were kept nude, eyes were lined with black eyeliner, taupe eye shadow was applied onto lids and a bit of black mascara was used for the finishing touch.


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The military inspired Burberry Fall Winter 2015 collection has a camouflage print eye shadow palette and a deep, khaki green nail polish.


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If you can't get your hands on the limited edition palette, fret not. Burberry has its staple classic eye shadow palettes in a similar shade of green and other colours.

Thursday, August 13, 2015

Sephora Epic Rewards Redemption Gone Totally Wrong

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The Sore Truth Behind Sephora's Epic Rewards Loyalty Redemption



Earlier this week, Sephora caused an online debacle so huge that sent fans snapping pictures of their Sephora purchases for return and sharing them on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram and swearing to boycott Sephora for alternative online beauty stores such as Ulta.com and Nordstrom.





One ex-customer of Sephora had made tens of thousands of dollars worth of purchases and had 14,000 points in their account. (USD$1 = 1 point)




Most of the angry customers felt that Sephora tried to pull a fast one by fraudulently marketing items that were not available to the general public.


A so-called rewards programme for their loyal customers who were called "Beauty Insiders" had flopped miserably. Customers were told to spend as much as they can during a golden week where their membership points would be doubled, tripled or quadrupled depending on their level of membership.

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On Aug 10, the very day of the event, no information whatsoever was provided on the timing of the event resulting in thousands of people pulling an all-nighter to redeem the items.


When the Sephora "Epic Rewards" event finally begun at 12 noon (Pacific Time), all the items for redemption were gone in less than a minute leaving customers awestruck - and not in a good way.


The event was not only misleading as Sephora had marketed it as a "redemption" instead of a contest, the unethical beauty company did not reveal how many sets were available for redemption. Such unfair business practices put a global French brand to shame. Sephora is under the LVMH or Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton SE group.


To make matters worse and add a slap to the face, these so-called exclusive redeemable sets were just normal product items available for purchase on the online shop and in Sephora stores.

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It was even used as a promotional photo for make-up new arrivals on the Sephora homepage.

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Rumours on social media have been circulating around that there were as little as 80 sets of rewards for 1000, 2000, 4,000 and 10,000 points set redemptions, of which, most have already been snapped up by Sephora employees.


Note: The redemption was open to staff and relatives, something that is completely unheard of in any contest or company marketing programme.


Sephora is well-known for being racist and its staff - snobby.

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Snapshot from Sephora's Facebook page of an Asian Chinese customer complaint claiming Sephora is racist as she was treated differently from the rest.

It was reported that some people from overseas were unable to purchase items during the promotion period and their order was cancelled under false pretences of card authentication failure. Even after calling up Sephora, orders were still stopped from being processed.

To sum up Sephora's wonderful Epic Rewards Redemption Scam...

Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Gigi Hadid for Topshop Fall Winter 2015

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It is this gorgeous, girl-next-door looking model - Gigi Hadid who made Quay Australia sunglasses go out of stock right after they were replenished and wowed fans at a recent Guess event in Sydney as the brand spokesperson.


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Gigi as seen in the "My Girl" cat-eye sunglasses that she made ultra popular.

The exotic mix-blood model and social media star is of Dutch and Palestinian descent. She has just the right amount of Asian and European features that gives her a unique look.

Pictures of Gigi's Fall Winter 2015 campaign for Topshop appear to be mostly monochrome faux fur and black leather jacket pieces - wardrobe basics that most already have. It's a little disappointing for Gigi can easily make style staples look effortlessly beautiful.

Hopefully, the complete collection that will launch soon would include some interesting pieces.

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Lancome Le Crayon Poudre Swatches

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Want to know how to get Cara Delevingne's enviable eye brows? 

Look no further as we help you test out the best shades of eye brow pencils for blondes and brunettes.

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One of our all-time favourite brow pencils is Lancome's Le Crayon Poudre or "Powder Pencil" for your eye brows.



Why we love it!



- Easy to use and control than compared to cream or powder brow palettes that come with separate brush applicators


- Pencil tip and brow colour glides easily onto brow area to fill up the gaps in your brow, thicken and define it just like Cara Delevingne's


- If you make a mistake, the powder is easily removable with a swab of a cotton bud or just use your fingertips


- Product stays on throughout the day even in hot, humid weather as tested in Singapore. Brow colour does not smudge.


- Wide array of colours for different to match your hair colour


Do note that availability of colours will vary from country to country. We advise our readers to purchase from Lancome USA or a variety of good online retailers as certain countries such as Singapore do not carry light brown colours for the Le Crayon Poudre brow pencil.



Lancome Le Crayon Poudre eye brow pencil swatches

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Initially, I could only find the eyebrow pencil in Chataigne or a medium-light chestnut brown colour and it did not help as my hair colour got lighter.

I was really pleased with my online purchase from Nordstrom.com and the new colours "Natural Blonde" and "Blonde" match my blonde hair better. 

Natural blonde is slightly lighter than blonde, not by much though as you can see in this picture taken without flash.


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The colour contrasts are larger in photos taken with flash.

Thursday, July 9, 2015

Best Fall 2015 Fringe Bags

Fringe bags have been a staple bohemian favourite for Spring Summer, Resort 2015 and now Fall Winter 2015. We pick the best fringe bag designs for Fall so you don't have to wonder what's out there any more.


1) Salar mimi fringed top handle bag

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Newcomer Italian handbag and accessories brand Salar took the spotlight with this cute star buckle, rounded camera-bag style top-handle bag complete with long suede fringes for that delightful swaying movement when you walk down the streets with this cute number.

Just like a Space Invader alien, the silhouette of this handbag resembles a quirky but adorable alien with its unique shape.

2) Saint Laurent Anita Fringe suede bag

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Channel your inner rock star in this YSL number which comes with a concho belt style buckle complete with suede tassels, generous fringing and silver rounded studs all-over the circumference of the bag.


3) Sara Battaglia Teresa Shoulder Bag

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This unique leather fringe bag from quirky Italian handbag designer Sara Battaglia features a mirrored buckle that resembles the shape of a Prada logo. The entire shoulder bag strap is covered with fringe detail - perfect for a fun-loving fashionista.


4) Valentino C-Rockee Pebbled Leather Fringe Shoulder Bag

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The old-school satchel is reworked into a lovely bohemian shoulder bag with all-over fringe on the bag strap as well as the flap in coarse-grain pebbled calf leather by Valentino.


5) Chloe Hudson Mini Tassled Shoulder Bag


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Chloe's mix of suede tassels on a calf leather with signature oversized gold-tone metal buckle for the bag strap gives it a touch of refinement even for a casual day out.


6) Stella McCartney Falabella Faux Suede Fringed Tote

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Stella McCartney's popular Falabella tote with is redone in a relaxed boho theme with faux suede fringes. 

We love the contrasting silver chain woven into the side of the bag for that subtle touch of glamour.

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Stella McCartney Elyse Star Shoes

Thrice the height and twice the comfort, animal-friendly brand Stella McCartney's Fall Winter 2015 shoes have caught our eye with shiny metallic versions of the popular Elyse lace-up platform shoes collection.

Here are our Top 3 picks for this Fall.
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1) Silver mirrored metallic Elyse platform shoes with a signature wooden platform and chunky rubber soles


One of the reasons why we like these shoes is because of it's comfortable square-toe instead of pointy ones that squish your toes into one tight, blister-inducing space.


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2) Gold brushed mirrored metallic Elyse platform shoes with a pale wooden platform and chunky rubber soles

This funky pair of shoes scream rock and roll with arty paintbrush strokes effect on a faux patent leather upper. Wear it for a night out with black leather leggings or a casual top and mini shorts.


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3) Gold brushed mirrored metallic runway boots

These gold patent leather effect brushed heeled boots from Stella McCartney's fall winter 2015 runway shoe proofs to be a show-stopper with its slightly inward curved heel that resembles the infamous Walter Steiger heels.

Chunkier heels means more support and comfort for high-heel lovers so don't hesitate to add a pair of chunky heel booties to your shoe collection.

Thursday, July 2, 2015

July Summer Lookbook - Etro Paisley and Silk Brocade

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Inspired by Asian silk brocade from India to China in lightweight silk, Etro's Spring 2009 runway show celebrated the shiny silk threads and lame style blazers, blouses, scarves worn as sash belts and dresses. 

This easy-to-wear, smart-casual, comfortable resort style features Etro's signature paisley print designs in a contemporary style on silk, wide-leg pants.


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For that ultimate jet-setter look, try varying shades of burnt orange blazers and long trench-style overcoat jackets with tan swimsuits, cargo skirts and strappy sandals.


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Model Jessica Stam (extreme left) wears a Chinese-knot macramé style button-down silk jacket with a Mandarin collar in tonal champagne, pink and orange. She wears a silk scarf as a high-waisted wide belt to provide shape to her waist.

Style tip: Model Siri Tollerod (extreme right) wears an oversized silk blouse and wide-leg silk pants which are unflattering to any figure. Even a belt would not salvage this disaster.


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A myriad of paisley print outfits in light peach that will enhance the glow of a tan.


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Heavily embellished gemstone T-shirt dress and vest make a good companion to geometric tile-print blazers and maxi dresses.


Style tip: Add a dash of glam with a gold lamé silk blouse to your blazer and trousers ensemble just like Liu Wen (model on the top, centre)


Share a snap of your favourite jet-setting vacation style with us and stand a chance to be featured in our online magazine! Hashtag it with #UnlikelyTravels


Image source: style.com, brocade backdrop

Monday, June 29, 2015

iPhone 6 24K Gold and Diamond Case

Here's some eye-candy to feast those peepers on this week and tide you over your Monday blues.Image and video hosting by TinyPic
24K Gold or Platinum Mother of Pearl? Pick your favourite and see if we read your personality well enough.
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Gold: Flamboyant, classy, sophisticated and decisive.

Platinum Mother of Pearl: Artistic, unique, very individualistic and takes pride in expressing oneself.

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Each iPhone is encrusted with diamonds on the sides and on the apple logo.


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If you are wondering what our choice is, it would be the black platinum mother of pearl diamond-encrusted iPhone case.

Don't ask, it's complicated.


Image source and luxury iPhone cases available for pre-order via Moda Operandi.

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Etro Spring 2016 Menswear Runway Review

The theme for Etro's Spring 2016 menswear runway show was their classic paisley prints in exotic copper and pastel hues with plenty of golden, shimmery and metallic undertones.

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What was unique about the Etro menswear show that differentiated itself from the rest was that each male model was styled to have their own individual personality through different hairdos, colours, shades, textures and length of each piece of clothing.

Dutch supermodel Ton Heukels opened the runway show wearing sandy brown suede slip-ons with a sheer pink pastel V-neck top and Indian kurta inspired long silk coat with matching skinny pants in a sandy desert color. 


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Like a cauldron of Indian spices, colourful and flavourful at the same time, each outfit packed a punch to all six senses.

The male equivalent of a celebrity supermodel (Cara Delevingne) - Lucky Blue Smith, who has cult followings in the Philippines and beyond, demonstrates how men can look smart with a skinny, casual buckle belt.

Our favourite outfit has to be the pink collarless suede overcoat. Pastel pink never looked so good on men in stark contrast to Gucci's disastrous new menswear collection by Alessandro Michele which tries too hard to put men in drag.


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The bohemian and carefree style of Etro can be seen in a knitted sweater with deliberate messy big stitches.


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From ultra smart shiny suits to casual but still sharp blue leather biker jacket and bermuda ensemble, the Etro runway show was an ultimate win. 

Style tip: There's nothing a dressy pair of shoe won't do to spice up an outfit and raise the game.


Image source: style.com
Indian spices wallpaper - Modernist Cuisine