Beauty In The Strangest Of Places

Beauty - Jasmine.

Firstly, credit where it’s due, plus an apology if I am bastardising its original meaning. The title of this blog post is a paraphrasing of a quote about beauty from designer Alexander McQueen.

“Beauty can come from the strangest of places, even the most disgusting of places. It’s the ugly things I notice more, because other people tend to ignore the ugly things.”

It comes from the book Savage Beauty by Andrew Bolton (The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York). I did not get to see the retrospective show of McQueen’s creations. However, I do get intense, visceral pleasure paging through this book, which highlights the Scottish designer’s maverick approach.

Beauty - Savage Beauty.
SHOW AND TELL: An image from the book Savage Beauty.

Perhaps it’s the fact that I have not had a proper holiday for years (workaholic, moi?) and I am yearning for some travel / escape / change of scenery / passport-stamping.

The good news is that I have a family road-trip coming up in mid-August. In the meantime, I explore the idea of beauty as a tonic. These are just some of the things in my immediate vicinity that do the trick.

LIME LIGHT

Can a leaf lift your spirits? Oh yes, if it’s a lime leaf. I get a kick from rubbing lime leaves between my fingers. This releases a fresh, crisp, citrus scent that never fails to captivate me. And the lime itself calls for a mojito.

Beauty - Lime Leaves.

VITAMIN SEA

While the Amalfi vacation will have to wait, Tom Ford Sole di Positano will do for now. There’s a veritable citrus and floral cocktail in this EDP, including notes of Calabrian bergamot, bitter orange, lemon, shiso leaf, orange blossom, ylang-ylang, jasmine, lily of the valley and neroli. Alas, on my skin, it dissipates very quickly. A case of fleeting beauty…

Beauty - Tom Ford Sole di Positano.

INDIAN SUMMER

We are having a very warm winter here in Johannesburg, with day-time temperatures averaging above 20ºC. As a result, the jasmine is out even earlier than usual. I am not complaining. Its rich scent is my imaginary olfactory ticket to an Indian summer.

Beauty - Jasmine.

VINTAGE VIEW

There’s something very re-assuring about a vintage treasure. I adore this kit, a gift from my sister. The leather case contains two functional glass bottles and glass containers. There’s no company or brand name on it, so I can’t trace its origins. And, you know what, it doesn’t matter.

Beauty - Vintage.

AN EYE FOR TOM FORD

TF Main PicWhen a grooming product is expensive I have very high expectations. And when that product is from Mr Suave Perfection himself, Tom Ford, my expectations are even higher than usual.

The American designer always looks so well put together, so naturally I expected some of that TF magic for myself when I started using Tom Ford For Men Anti-Fatigue Eye Treatment.

According to the Tom Ford website, this product is “infused with the Tom Ford skin calming and infusing complexes”. As good as that sounds, I wanted more details, which the ingredients list on the product box provided.

Apart from the inclusion of several dimethicones (that is, silicon-based skin protectants known for creating a hydrating barrier on the skin and their temporary skin-plumping properties), I noticed a number of natural extracts, including algae, St Paul’s Wort, sweet almond and tangerine peel. Nice! I am always for a combo of the best of science and nature.

So how did Tom Ford Anti-Fatigue Eye Treatment perform? I started using it a month ago when the area around my eyes was looking particularly tired. As per the instructions, I have been applying it morning and night, using the very sexy contoured applicator.

TF Tip Pic 2
IT’S ALL IN THE DETAILS: The very sexy contoured applicator.

Four weeks later, the area around my eyes is definitely looking perkier and plumper. And I am appreciating why this Tom Ford Anti-Fatigue Eye Treatment is so pricey. I actually believe the interviews I have read in which Mr Ford makes the ultimate brand endorsement by saying he uses his own products.

Next on my grooming hit-list: To try some more products from the Tom Ford For Men grooming range. The Skin Revitalizing Concentrate sounds good. Ditto the Intensive Purifying Mud Mask and Concealer.

Tom Ford For Men Anti-Fatigue Eye Treatment, R1 045, is available from Stuttafords Sandton, Stuttafords Eastgate, Edgars Mall of Africa and Edgars V&A Waterfront.