Mistakes to avoid while applying make-up, tips to get a flawless look

Dump all the products that have crossed their expiry date. Old and expired products are not safe to use and can lead to rashes, allergies and irritation.

Make-up can be your best friend or your worst enemy, depending on how you use it. To get it right, find the right blush for your skin tone, don’t wear waterproof mascara daily and don’t go overboard with your love for matching your everything with your outfit. Make-up artiste Mouna Lall, and Jason Arland, senior manager at Artistry, have listed the dos and don’ts of make-up:

* The biggest mistake is not using a moisturising cream. One must wash and apply a cream or moisturiser depending on the skin type at least 15 minutes before pruning the skin.

* Always use a primer which helps the foundation to have a smooth surface to settle on. This makes make-up last long.

* If you have dry skin, any kind of moisturiser can be used where as if you have an oily skin then only water based foundations should be used.

* It is important to know how to apply foundation. We make big mistakes like using both our hands and rubbing it away instead of tapping and placing it on the skin with two fingers or a brush.

* Confusing correctors and concealers is a major confusion people often have. Correctors are for correcting one’s skin tone whereas concealers will conceal the corrector and foundation, giving an even skin tone.

* Use a fine mineralised powder just to set the make-up base to avoid a heavy cakey face as the natural make-up look is in fashion.

* Matching same colour eyeshadow, lipstick and nail polish with clothes is a big no as the look becomes one-dimensional and is not appealing to the eyes. If you wear a pink outfit with gold work, then the eyes can be brown gold or smokey with only lipstick matching the dress.

* Heavy punched in the face kind of smokey eyes is a big turnoff. Blend it well.

* Go for a blush that is closest to your skin tone. Fair and medium skinned people can try the rosy pink and peaches. Nude, red and brown coloured blush look best on people with dusky and deeper skin tones.

* Using same colour lip liner all over the lips and following with lipstick is important for the lipstick to have a long stay and not leave a line after a while.

* Waterproof mascara is amazing, but not always. The water-resistant formula can dry out your lashes causing them to break easily. Also, removing the waterproof mascara takes a whole of effort which can again damage your lashes. Keep it reserved for weddings and parties.

* Dump all the products that have crossed their expiry date. Old and expired products are not safe to use and can lead to rashes, allergies and irritation.

* Make-up brushes are important tools that give you the right application and finish. Keeping them clean prolongs their life and saves you a lot of trouble of breakouts and infection. Wash them regularly with warm water and detergent and then soak them in antiseptic liquid before drying out completely.

* Bronzer has become the next big thing in the make-up world. But while everybody wants to use bronzer for that sun-kissed look, wearing too much of bronzer and applying it all over the face can backfire. Use the smallest quantity of bronzer on the jaw line, edges of the forehead, temples and sides of the nose bridge for a warm glow that looks natural.

* Lipsticks are the easiest way to perk up the pout. A general thumb rule to follow is that, dark colours are likely to make your lips look even thinner while lighter ones will make the lips look fuller.


Now you can wear sweatpants to work without anyone finding out, here’s how

Here’s why these new kind of sweats are going to be your best bet for work wear.

Wade Eyerly got an invitation to the New York Stock Exchange, telling him to come dressed in “business professional” garb. He decided to break the rules. The 39-year-old executive put on a pair of stretch fabric pants that look like slacks but feel like yoga wear. “I was, like, ‘This is amazing,’” he said. “I immediately ordered two more pair.”

The pants, sold by athletic-wear label Rhone Apparel Inc., are technically made for commuting. Eyerly, who lives in New Canaan, Connecticut, does a lot of that, given his regular 90-minute trips to Manhattan. The pants are also perfect for flying. “They are just so comfortable,” he said. “They don’t stick to your calf; they aren’t too tight. They look pressed every morning. You could work out in these pants.”

As office environments open up to more casual dress, clothing companies are looking for ways to sell less formal clothing to the working masses. Marketed as “commuter-wear,” brands hope to convince workers that they need clothing specific to the trials of getting to and from work. These new clothes come in all kinds of old forms: blazers, chinos, button-down shirts—you name it—but in fabrics and cuts that can survive Americans’ increasingly long and grueling trips to the office.

It’s also a natural expansion for active wear brands that want a piece of the workweek. While dress codes have eased, employees don’t typically sport lycra bodysuits or compression shirts—at least, not yet. “We see work wear as an opportunity,” said Sun Choe, senior vice president of global merchandising at Lululemon Athletica Inc. Right now, companies such as hers fully own the weekend wardrobe. Now they want the remaining five days, too.

The cubicle may seem an, um, stretch for a company known for yoga wear and leggings, but Lululemon’s research and development labs are working on anti-wrinkle, anti-stink, anti-stain fabrics that can serve the commuter from home to work and back again. Choe points to the ABC pants for men, a colorful abbreviation for their roominess where it counts. Made of something called Warpstreme fabric, the $128 item looks like a regular five-pocket pair of casual pants.

And that’s the key: The fabric is constructed to look like normal woven pants, but it’s actually a knit that allows for more comfort. The back has a zippered pocket to store a phone, too, just in case you’re hopping on a bicycle to get to work.

“It was definitely built with the commuter in mind,” said Choe. “It was very intentional.” Lululemon plans to start selling a version for women in the fall.

Pure athletic clothing developed by such companies as Nike Inc. and Under Armour Inc. isn’t a viable solution for commuters because it’s developed for intense use over short periods of time. A workout T-shirt doesn’t translate well in the office either. Ministry of Supply, a men’s work-wear company that infuses tech in all of its items, is trying to ease commuter stress with gear that can adapt to different environments.

Gihan Amarasiriwardena, Ministry of Supply’s co-founder and president, is focused on managing comfort throughout the day. There’s much more moisture involved when you’re running on a treadmill or kicking around a soccer ball, compared with waiting for a subway train or walking to a car. If you’re on a work trip, you spend hours seated on a plane, but then have to hustle through the airport and still look good when you get to the big meeting.

Amarasiriwardena calls it a “peak demand” problem. “If you use clothing for a very specific moment that’s actually a short period of time, that leads to more discomfort,” he said.

At Ministry of Supply’s lab, a team is working on a jacket that helps create a steady level of temperature and moisture, so commuters don’t have to peel off layers of jackets and scarves when they step into a warmer area.

Researchers gather data through testing on treadmills—because outdoor walking often makes up a quarter of a typical commute—to figure out how the jacket can modulate heat. That means handling temperature regulation, moisture control and movement in what’s called a microclimate—the zone between skin and fabric. If you wear a raincoat in humid weather, your skin feels clammy because that microclimate isn’t being managed appropriately, for example.

Clothing that can help you acclimate to the different environments we travel through every day, while remaining comfortable and office-presentable, is the niche that commuter wear is aiming to fill.

And demand for it is growing. Rhone said its commuter pants, made of a Japanese air-permeable stretch fabric, is the company’s top seller. The company worked on the original pant for a year just to get just the right mix of structure and stretch. It has another version coming out this fall.

“When you’re in commuting situations, you get on the subway—it’s hot down there. The last thing you want is your pants to be retaining heat,” said Nate Checketts, Rhone’s co-founder and chief executive officer.

He admits, however, that comfort—not commuting—is the main reason shoppers gravitate to the pants. “Men in particular crave that comfort,” he said. “If we can give that to them without letting them look like a slouch, I think that’s the real benefit.”


Fashion’s Grand slam: why Wimbledon is a masterclass on how to look smart in the summer

Match point: the Duchess of Cambridge, Victoria Beckham, Serena Williams, the Duchess of Sussex and Anna Wintour Photograph: Guardian Design Team

From dreamy Ralph Lauren uniforms to all-white jumpsuits, your summer style directive is courtside SW19 – channelling Meghan and Kate, Anna Wintour and Serena Williams

Can we talk about the weather? Is there even any other subject right now? It is the beginning and end of every conversation. How marvellous it is, how lucky we are, obvs, segueing rapidly into the kicker: what on earth to wear? Holiday weather is a breeze when you are pulling a dress on over a bikini. But when you are still on-duty and expected to look smart, summer dressing is a challenge.

But as luck would have it, there is a masterclass on how to look smart in the summer being broadcast live from London for most of the day, almost every day, for the next fortnight. It’s called Wimbledon. While the rest of the country flails hopelessly around trying to figure out what to wear when your work wardrobe doesn’t suit the climate but your holiday wardrobe doesn’t suit the vibe, one corner of SW19 is showing us how it’s done.

Wimbledon is Britain’s best-dressed moment of the year. London fashion week has too many outsize trainers and miniature sunglasses; the Baftas has that baffling “it’s early February, I think I’ll stand outside in a strapless dress and no coat” goosebumpy thing going on; Ascot is Halloween for posh people. Wimbledon, on the other hand, is bona fide summer chic. And Wimbledon is more fashionable than it has ever been, because it lies at the crossing point of two axes of power in style this decade. SW19 is where the glamour of sport and the allure of the royal family come together – and the stock of both in fashion is at an all time high. The unstoppable rise of athleisure has made playing sport (or performatively watching sport, as exemplified by the royal box) more high-profile than ever. And the passing of the Wimbledon baton to a younger generation of the royal family (the Queen, not a tennis fan, has only ever attended four times) has amplified its profile by having coincided with the impact of the tennis-obsessed Middleton family in the royal landscape. Pippa Middleton is even more of a keen fan than her sister, and counts Roger Federer a close enough pal for him to have been a guest at her wedding last year.

If you don’t believe that strawberries and cream at Wimbledon now constitutes fashion’s top table, consider this. Serena Williams, the Duchess of Sussex, the Duchess of Cambridge, Victoria Beckham and Anna Wintour are probably the five most influential women in fashion in 2018, and the All England Club will probably play host to all five before next Sunday. Serena Williams, recent American Vogue cover star and currently to be seen in a Dior bodysuit on the cover of Harper’s Bazaar, is dominating early storylines on Centre Court as she returns from maternity leave. The new Duchess of Sussex, whose every public appearance leads to an instant sellout of whatever she wears, is a tennis fan (she attended in 2016) and pretty much a dead cert to support her friend Williams. The Duchess of Cambridge is a tennis nut and patron of Wimbledon. Victoria Beckham is a regular at the men’s final. As eight-times champ Roger Federer’s most loyal fan, Anna Wintour is sure to make an appearance as he defends his title. This is a power front row like no other. Oh, and Beyoncé – another friend of Williams, who has attended Centre Court as her guest – is in Europe, so don’t rule out a courtside cameo from the Carters, if they can carve out a moment from their tour schedule.

Beyonce and Jay Z at the Wimbledon women’s final between Serena Williams and Angelique Kerber in 2016.
 Beyonce and Jay Z at the Wimbledon women’s final between Serena Williams and Angelique Kerber in 2016. Photograph: Karwai Tang/WireImage
Wimbledon uniform by Ralph Lauren.
 Wimbledon uniform by Ralph Lauren.

But the A-list are not the point, because what makes Wimbledon truly relevant to the business of getting dressed is that its fashion power does not derive from untouchable haute couture wardrobes. The joy of Wimbledon is that everyone is chic. The famous all-white dress code ensures that every on-court shot is a pure visual harmony. Then there is the Gatsby-esque dreaminess of the Ralph Lauren uniforms. Ballgirls and ballboys wear simple preppy navy polo shirts and polo dresses, while umpires and line judges wear blazers and smart cream slacks. The elegance of the uniforms is a lovely thing, because it makes those working at Wimbledon as central to the glamour of the place as the Duchesses in their Alexander McQueen tea dresses.

Dress, Zara, £29.99
 Dress, Zara, £29.99 Photograph: Zara

The many style lessons to be learned from watching Wimbledon begin, of course, with white. When you want to look cool and calm in summer, all-white is an excellent place to start. Who wouldn’t take style tips from Roger Federer, the snow-white Centre Court dream whose appearance at this year’s opening press conference caused a reporter to blurt out that he was looking “even more handsome than last year”? I have never mastered wearing white on holiday (incompatible with a regime of spaghetti vongole and pistachio ice-cream) but I have learned that when you want to look competent and chic, white is the simplest formula for summer power dressing.

Blazer, £49.99, zara.com
 Blazer, £49.99, zara.com Photograph: PR Company Handout

Also, blazers. If you are still harbouring inverse snobbery against the blazer, take a good look at Wimbledon and then at yourself. It is true that if you wear a blazer with a striped shirt and a panama hat and ostentatiously expensive watch, you will look ghastly. But if, on the other hand, you wear a blazer with your normal wardrobe you will find it neatens the edges of your look in a pleasingly no-effort kind of way. The key is not to shy away from going full-on blazer and thereby end up in a boring suit jacket. Gold buttons? Great, wear the blazer with a white T-shirt and cropped trousers and gold hoop earrings. Double-breasted? Surprisingly flattering thrown over a sundress.

Self-Portrait dress, £300, from matchesfashion.com
 Dress, £300, frommatchesfashion.com.

The Wimbledon “look” is smart, but not fraught. Even in the royal box, the dress code for female spectators is surprisingly relaxed. This makes Wimbledon an infinitely more useful template for what-to-wear-in-real-life than the royal enclosure, Ascot, with its compulsory millinery, or the Met Gala with its impossible dress codes (this year, if you recall, was Catholic chic). Self-Portrait is a popular label – Pippa Middleton wore one of their dresses last year, and Beyoncé the year before that – reinforcing its status as the home of formal-but-still-fun dresses. Sienna Miller in a cream Galvan jumpsuit, red lipstick and tortoiseshell sunglasses (2015) will forever serve as a reminder that the Talented Mr Ripley school of summer dressing takes a lot of beating.

This year’s Wimbledon is only just hotting up, but the fashion game is strong as ever. For day one, Mirka Federer teamed her deckchair-striped cotton shirt with a Gucci belt while Laura Carmichael wore a Ganni wrap dress: two strong summer looks, right there. The grass is green, the dress code is white – but this is a red carpet. Pour yourself a Pimm’s, and watch.

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Ditch Your Stripes For These 4 Fun Prints This Winter

he Swirlster Picks team writes about stuff we think you’ll like. Swirlster has affiliate partnerships, so we get a share of the revenue from your purchase.

Ditch Your Stripes For These 4 Fun Prints This Winter

Don’t let your print game get boring this season

The chilly season is just weeks away and you’re still wearing tropical patterns and polka dots? No can do! Like the rest of your wardrobe, you better update your prints and give your usual choices a much-needed break. The best way to do that is by picking from these 4 prints to try this winter.

As the trees shed their leaves all around, show solidarity with the Ziory Leaf Print Scarf. The Georgette silk blend has a lightly hued leaf print in blue and red tones, which is extremely autumn appropriate. It is available for Rs 695 from Rs 999. Shop here.


Scarf from Ziory

A chic choice for the season is definitely camouflage. The Imagica Camouflage Hot Shorts come in the rugged print and are sure to add a funky touch with a solid black t-shirt. It is available for Rs 600 from Rs 750. Shop here.


How to nail the art of online shopping

Image result for How,to,nail,the,art,of,online,shopping

As a child, many of us must have tried rubbing on lamps in desperate hopes of coming across a genie. A genie that would make our lives easier and grant our wishes by making things appears in a jiffy.  Fast forward to 2018, we now have the internet which is more or less the same thing. We literally live in an era where we are all just “a click away”. Want a red dress for date night on the weekend? One click and voila it magically appears on your doorstep. Well, we do have to pay for it but doesn’t everything come with a price?


Welcome to 2018, where the internet has truly revolutionized the art of purchasing. We have come a long way from physically dragging ourselves to the store in search of the perfect outfit for the annual office party. We no longer have to drive to hunt for things in crowded places. Today, we can sit in the comfort of our home’s wearing PJ’s and explore the entire new season catalogue of our favourite store whilst sipping on some red wine. (Yes, that is my how I spend most of my Saturday afternoons!)


Most of us are guilty of making purchases every now and then online. “I window-shop literally every other day online. Being on social media literally, 24/7 temptations do get the better of me. But yes, I definitely do most of my shopping online. Firstly, I don’t have the luxury of time to go to the mall and browse stores. Secondly, decision making online is easier. I add stuff to my wishlist and then only make the selections of what goes into my cart. I am not so much of an impulsive shopper, I love seeing all my options and comparing them before buying”, shares blogger Aleena Macker. Even Vishal Singh, co-founder of Benoit Fashion agrees, “With the internet revolution going on in our country, online shopping is here to stay; social media just boosts the whole e-commerce ecosystem. Offline has existed since the beginning, but if I give you options over a lakh in the comfort of your own home, which you can browse through a five-inch screen, who wouldn’t be interested in giving it a try?”

Speaking about the rise of online shopping, Khushali Chauhan, head of online retail at Jade Blue, shares, “Online shopping according to me has become a very convenient option, especially for all the working individuals out there. If a brand isn’t online, it’s losing quite a lot in the market in terms of visibility and revenue, both. Every year we see the numbers increasing. And with the easy accessibility to the internet, we are surely going to keep seeing the rise at least for the coming decade.”

But mind you that shopping online is no child’s play. While it certainly is easy and convenient than its retail counterpart, there are certain things to keep in mind while adding things to your cart online. Read on to find out more.


Find the deets
Research before clicking on the “add to cart”! Don’t we visit 10 different stores and then make a purchase while retail shopping? The same principle applies whilst shopping on the internet. Scan a variety of websites before ordering it as most of the times the same product is available on a different platform at a much lesser price or comes without a shipping cost. (Trust me when I say that shipping costs do matter and can really add up). We know you have to have the shiny quilted velvet sling bag that you just saw but hold on, check the internet for varieties, compare and then make a purchase.

Secondly, make it a point to go through customer reviews. (Yes, I know the bags look awfully pretty and you can’t wait to order it and flaunt it but wait!) Pictures provided on shopping platforms make the product look flawless and amazing but make sure to check the pictures in the comments section provided by customers who have ordered it as that is what the product really does look like.  “Online shopping is a blessing in disguise. I shop online quite often. I carefully read about the product and style description before placing an order to save time later”, says fashion blogger Pranjal Salecha. Reading customer reviews can actually tell you a lot about the product (yes, it can tell you if the fit is true to its size or if it actually is the exact shade of pink that it looks like in pictures!) Read and read before you finally make a call on the product as this could save a lot of time on sending the product back if it did not match up to your expectation.


Sneaky sales
If there is one word that makes the majority of the female population happy, it is –SALE (well, that and caffeine!). The best part about shopping online is that it provides us sales all year round as compared to its retail cousin where we have to desperately wait for the end of the season to make our purchases. Do you remember the days where we actually had to wait patiently for the in-store sale to arrive to finally buy the item we’d been eyeing since long? (I certainly did!). Luckily times have changed. Shopping online makes things super convenient and non-fussy but also provides you with great deals and discounts on everything. Majority of the Indian shopping sites have a separate sales section and also provide deals regularly on the new merchandise which is why it is essential to understand how the website works.


”When shopping for the first time from any website, look for the first-time shopper discount code, almost all websites will have this and always download the app of that particular brand you like to shop from to get a regular notification on offers and discounts,” says Salecha. Chauhan also points out, “The inventory block is also lesser since the old stock can be cleared at higher discounts. The consumers are always at a profitable end as they get the best of the prices for what they want while sitting at home.”


Returns and cancellations
Returns and cancellations are one of the key features offered by an online shopping portal. Imagine ordering for a dress only to realize that you are getting it at a better deal five hours later or because you changed your mind and no longer wish to buy it?  This is where the cancellations button comes to mind. If the site does not offer this option, then there is no option other than to have it delivered and send it back (quite tedious, isn’t it?).  “Never forget to read about the return policy before placing the order. Not everything that you think will fit you perfectly will actually do”, says Salecha.

Make it a priority to always read or go through the terms and conditions before proceeding to make a payment for your purchase. Similarly, a lot of websites do not offer returns on sale products. In this case, make sure to be absolutely sure about the purchase as you wouldn’t be able to get rid of it later. Also, a lot of startup websites does not offer the feature so it always helps in looking out for it before rather than throwing the product away later. “Masses, young or relatively old, lower middle class or relatively affluent are giving online shopping a try as though the customer cannot feel the garment or check for the sizes, she is confident with the process as the return options provide a hassle-free experience,” says Singh.

Additionally, In case of ordering something internationally, look for the insurance option, which helps you ensure your purchases in case you have already paid for it. If the product is insured and is damaged or lost in the transaction, the company has to send you a brand new product.


The perfect fit
We all have questions like “will it fit me well?” or “will it look as good on me as it does on the model flaunting it” running in our head every time we shop online. Yes, the quality of the garment, the style, the pattern is all important but if it doesn’t fit well then the said garment is of no importance (you really don’t wish to be seen at a party strutting around in a black ruffle dress two sizes bigger for you, do you?). The fit is one of the most questionable thought we all face while purchasing something off the internet. This is where the size guide plays a huge role. “Firstly, go through the site’s size guide. Secondly, check the size that shows wear on the model to understand the fit of that particular size. Zoom in to see the material of the clothing. And make sure to read the complete description,” imparts Macker. The size guide differs from website to website. You may be an M at some website but at another, you could be an S. Therefore, it becomes very essential to sit with a measuring tape while browsing online and measure yourself with a tape to see how well the merchandise would fit you.


Art of spending
We totally get that shopping online is a wonderful thing and there is nothing that beats the feeling of buying fresh fur-trimmed velvet boots for the season, but it is necessary to draw a line and not run into a debt. It is pretty easy to lose track of spending online and keeping tabs on the online transactions are not really spending cash physically. “I always screenshot and save the online transaction even though the website does send you details on mail to keep track of my spending,” says Salecha. Maintaining a journal or document or keeping tracks of receipts does help to track down the transactions and stick to the monthly budget.


While shopping online has a number of pros there are also a few cons that you need to look out for. One of them is whether the product you want to invest in is authentic or not (this really counts if you are thinking of buying high-end luxury items). Make sure to check the website thoroughly and checking if the site has a physical address and a phone number for you to call on in case things go wrong. “As far as product authenticity is concerned, if it is a trusted site and you have purchased things before then there shouldn’t be a problem but if I do like something and am not convinced I check up if they accept returns and refund the product and most importantly I pay for the product on arrival and not beforehand,” mentions Macker.

Additionally, do a web search on the website if you have to, in order to know more about it. Also, read the terms and conditions before as many websites do sell knockoffs or second-hand products (Remember that precaution is better than cure!).


Social media
The advancement in the world of technology has us shopping for things from social media too! Akshaya Ramji – who is a designer and makes money selling her creations on Instagram tells, “I used my Instagram handle Wyshkaa to start selling pieces and it did manage to catch the attention of potential customers and bloggers. It all starts with people enquiring about the prices of garments and then translates to us creating customized pieces for them. It all depends on the way your page is marketed.” Chauhan reiterates, “One (brand) can reach to a large number of people while operating from a smaller space, which has benefitted a lot of sellers. The brands which didn’t even have much of a local reach can now have a national reach.”

All you have to do is glance at your explore pages on the gram to know how serious is the selling game on social media.  “Always make sure to check the about you option on the sellers’ page, this way you get to see if people have brought things from the person and have tagged them on the picture,” Ramji informs.

Phew, go on and slay at the online game now!

Text: Ravina Sachdev