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July 29 2014

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10 posts tagged "Colette"

Colette Is California Dreaming

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When British girl band Bananarama released “Cruel Summer” in 1983, their goal was to create the antithesis of your typical seasonal top ten hit. Something that, as member Sara Dallin told The Guardian at the time, “played on the darker side of summer songs; it looked at the oppressive heat, the misery of wanting to be with someone as the summer ticked by.” Much like the song that inspired its name, the Cruel Summer candle, a collaboration between men’s grooming line Baxter of California and Parisian bastion of hip Colette, isn’t run-of-the-mill. The soy wax candle has a lush, green aroma punctured by bright citrus notes and hints of mellow florals like hyacinth and cyclamen, all against a backdrop of musk and cedarwood. The cool packaging, created by art director Marc Atlan, whose design résumé includes work for Comme des Garçons and Helmut Lang, takes cues from Bananarama’s decade of dominance. This is one throwback that we’re pretty sure won’t get old.

Baxter x Colette Cruel Summer candle, $30, available Baxter of California and Colette in Paris.

Colette’s Best Beauty Bets

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In the 14 years since it opened on Paris’ Rue Saint-Honoré, Colette has become a fixture on any well-heeled traveler’s list (the store celebrates its official birthday on the first day of spring!). That’s thanks to a masterfully curated selection of fashion and accessories (currently lining the racks are Mary Katrantzou’s intricately printed Spring pieces and Olivier Theyskens’ collection for Theory); an endless stream of designer exclusives; pop-up shops (from March 1 through the 10, Colette has teamed up with Chanel on a separate space a few storefronts down Rue Saint-Honoré); and a frequently changing art gallery (the current exhibit features original artwork from magazines like Love, Muse, and Ponystep). But what occasionally gets overlooked at this Parisian behemoth of cool is its amazing selection of beauty products from around the world, many of which are unavailable in the U.S. With that in mind, we asked Lisa Libreton, Colette’s beauty manager, to share her top five current favorites. We suggest picking up one (or all) of these along with that Comme des Garçons for Paco Rabanne metal chain bag on your next visit. Or you can just buy online—did we mention they ship to the States?



Bio Effect EGF Serum

“This facial cellular activating serum from Iceland is just incredible. It restores your skin and gives it a lot of elasticity and glow. A total skincare must.”

Bio Effect EGF Serum, about $156, www.colette.fr.

David Mallett Hair Serum

“An incredibly light serum that gives your hair amazing shine and finish without a flat or greasy look.”

David Mallett Hair Serum, about $75, www.colette.fr.

Herve Herau The Way of Alchemy Cream Gel

“A fresh facial gel with natural ingredients and minerals that’s suitable for all skin types and gives your complexion a healthy glow. It is perfect as a makeup base.”

Herve Herau Way of Alchemy Gel, about $110, www.colette.fr.

Les Chochottes No Stress Essential Oil

“A 100 percent natural product, this essential oil spray is great to spray on your pillow for serenity. It’s also a good solution to fight anxiety, stress, headaches, and insomnia. A good, natural cure for a bad day!”

Les Chochottes No Stress Spray, about $14, www.colette.fr.

Essential Kit Wonder Balm

“This organic multipurpose balm for cuticles, elbows, or any dry, itchy, or irritated areas on the body is wonderfully repairing and soothing. You cannot live without it once you’ve tried it!”

Essential Kit Wonder Balm, about $21, www.colette.fr.

Photo: Courtesy of Colette

Another Magazine Gets A Fragrance Like No Other

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It’s been a busy month for Le Labo. First, the bespoke fragrance company collaborated on an exclusive line for U.S. retailer Anthropologie, and now founders Fabrice Penot and Edouard Roschi have another joint venture: Another 13, a fragrance made with Jefferson Hack of Another Magazine. As you’d expect from the biannual glossy known for its provocative photo spreads and entertaining editorial content, the eau de parfum includes a particularly provocative and unusual ingredient: a whale vomit accord, or Ambrox, as the sweet-smelling and quite pricey extract from the upchuck of sperm whales is called by the olfactory set. “Technically, its processed whale puke,” Roschi deadpans. “Basically, a sperm whale’s main diet consists of squids, and these squids scratch the inside of the whale on the way down the digestive tract. When the whale pukes up what is basically a clot, that substance washes on shore, is found by fishermen, and sold as a substance called ambergris. I guess if you want a comparison, it could be like a cat fur ball.” Gross, yes, but the ancient Egyptians burned the stuff as incense eons ago and it was revered for its pleasant aromas. Colette’s Sarah Lerfel got the project off the ground. “Sarah had an ‘aha’ moment and thought that it would be cool if we did something together with Hack,” Roschi explains. “We are two brands with a common vibe—Another Magazine likes to experiment the way we do, so we agreed.” Fruity notes mixed with “something dirty” round out the scent, which takes its name from the 13 main ingredients in the concoction. Here’s betting the other 12 are just as interesting as Ambrox.

Photo: Courtesy of Le Labo

The House That Kurkdjian Built

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As the fashion set relocates to Paris for the last leg of Spring shows, there are certain popular destinations that will likely fill whatever downtime the schedule allows. A trip to Les Puces, some vintage shopping in the Marais, a stop at Ladurée, perhaps. For the beauty-minded, there is one must-see attraction that should not be missed. That would be the newly erected Maison Francis Kurkdjian. Kurkdjian, an indie star in the world of perfumery, has just opened an eponymous boutique at 5 rue d’Alger around the corner from Colette to house his own line of fragrances, which is set to bow stateside in October at Bergdorf Goodman and Neiman Marcus. The man behind such modern classics as Narciso Rodriguez for Her (and Him), Lanvin’s Rumeur, Acqua di Parma’s Iris Nobile and Jean Paul Gaultier’s Le Male, the 40-year-old nose embarked on his solo project under the pretext that “luxury is not just name brands, it’s the right thing at the right time.” We caught up with the olfactory phenom to discuss this concept of new luxury, the intricate relationship between perfume and haute couture, and that rumored mobile trunk of “magic potions” he totes around with him wherever he goes.

So aside from being “the right thing at the right time,” what, for you, defines luxury?

Luxury is not a price on a product. Luxury isn’t expensive. It’s taking one’s time when necessary. Now, I think it is much more linked to personal pleasure than material things in the absolute. It’s about paying attention to oneself in a way that is less materialistic, about sharing rather than egotism.

Continue Reading “The House That Kurkdjian Built” »

Nude Nails And The Search For Color-Matching Perfection

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Editor’s Note: Frequent Style File contributor Maya Singer weighs in on one of this season’s biggest nail trends and makes us feel a bit better about the lengths we’ll go to for the perfect shade of nude polish.


Having just resurfaced from almost two solid weeks of a (mostly) work-free vacation, I’d like to tell you, with unabated honesty, how I spent most of my respite: polishing my nails. If that doesn’t sound like the kind of activity that can fill 14 days, then you, dear reader, have never tried to find a lacquer that exactly, precisely, invisibly matches the color of your skin. To satisfy this particular beauty whim, embarked upon because a truly nude fingertip is the perfect way to complement a neon-colored clutch, I tested the patience of manicurists in several downtown Manhattan zip codes, opened up bottle after bottle of polish at Duane Reade (much to various security guards’ chagrin), and lost more hours at Sephora than is healthy or sane. Naturally, it was only after I’d given up the project that I stumbled onto perfection: WAW by USLU Airlines. Launched by makeup artist Feride Uslu, the Berlin-based line is probably best known for its over-the-counter airbrush makeup system, but the company also works up color collaborations with fashion folk such as Henrik Vibskov and the geniuses at Colette. Last year, they introduced Uslu Airlines x Bernhard Wilhelm, a nail polish range now comprising 12 colors. One of these is WAW, named after Warsaw’s Fredric Chopin International Airport and an exact match for my foundation—NARS St. Moritz (success!). In other news, the brand just debuted four new polishes concocted by international DJs, including PSG by Ed Banger (a.k.a. DJ Busy P), which happens to be the perfect complement to a nude-toned clutch—and a boon to anyone who’s skin color is acid yellow.