If you have been following this blog for a while, you will know that I have written about what perfume Kate wore on her wedding day before. However, this post is the first time that I will be highlighting multiple scents from Illuminum, the perfume house that created the classic white floral scent that Kate Middleton wore on her wedding day when she became the Duchess of Cambridge. Illuminum is a British perfume house that is now easier for us Americans to find here in the states.
Illuminum was founded five years ago, the same year that William and Kate got married. Their official website describes Illuminum as “a British fine fragrance collection that views scent as an open-ended adventure in self-expression. Where other perfume houses ask you to identify with a market idea of who you are, we make you the star of a transformative process of personal discovery. This process ofbecoming is without limits. You make it what it is.”
So without further ado, here is a list of some scents from Illuminum for both women and men with the official description of each scent courtesy of Barney’s New York. Furthermore, some of the scents that I will write about here are found exclusively at Barney’s so you won’t find them anywhere else. I will begin with Kate’s wedding perfume: White Gardenia Petals.
White Gardenia Petals
Traditionally British royal brides since Queen Victoria tend to wear Creed perfume on their wedding day for the exception of Princess Diana and a few others. Kate decided to break with traditional and wear the brand new perfume by Illuminum on her big day. At the time of her wedding, it was widely reported that Kate chose “White Gardenia Petals” for her wedding and she may continue to wear it to this day.
White Gardenia Petals’ official description: “This is a delicate and refined scent – the top note of lily evokes a nostalgic summer ambiance, whilst heart notes of gardenia, Ylang Ylang, lily of the valley and jasmine breeze are sumptuous and feminine. Amber wood underscores this light bouquet.”
Here is another fragrance from Illuminum called Tahitian Yuzu.
Official description: “Redolent of the South Seas and all their exotic abundance of fruits and flowers. This fragrance clusters together top notes of pineapple and blackcurrant that are sparkling, piquant and delicious, it then journeys into a sea of twinkling stars; jasmine and violet. Whilst the base note of musk bestows a soft seductiveness to this effervescent mix.”
Illuminum seems to specialize in niche perfume that is unique to what you can easily find in any department store. “Ginger Pear” is a perfect example of how artfully Illuminum blends notes together.
Ginger Pear’s Description: “This exotic partnering of ginger and pear is the apogee of gourmand fragrances. An effervescent crown of sparkling pear and citrus zest melts into a beautiful evocation of wild ginger – as though you had just sliced in half a root. Tea blossom joins the ginger to provide a sanguine coolness, whilst musk renders sweetness at the base.”
I absolutely LOVE any perfume with bergamot in it.
Tribal Black Tea description: “A spiced conflation of orange and tea notes, serenade the wearer with the brightness of bergamot and the engagingly provocative spice of cardamom. The darkness of the black tea blossom brings body to the centre. Mystical incense and sweet amber wood underscore this dry, sensually saturnine and beautifully bitter evocation.”
This leather scent is great for women who like more unisex scents. I know lots of women who like to wear a light cologne and I think this scent would be perfect for that.
Official Description: “The dark, demonic whip crack of leather is central to this fragrance. Flanked by Black Pepper and Coriander at the top and Olibanum and Civet underneath; this is a dry, luxuriant and deviant leather scent. A spicy sensuality pervades this scent.”
Official Description: “Wrap yourself in this cosseting and cocooning blend of sweetness and light. Top notes of coconut and fresh greens beckon you in and engender an inviting succulence. Purple hyacinth lends an exotic flourish to this most tactile of blends. Cashmere wood and amber gives it a gravitas and strength and longevity, fixing the evanescent coconut and greens into a lasting embrace.”
Besides bergamot, I also love any scent with jasmine in it. I think it’s so feminine.
Official Description: “Opening with a refreshing waterfall of citrus, this seemingly capricious floral, embedded with Baies Rose and Jasmine absolute employs White Datura Oil at its epicentre, providing its legendary hypnotic qualities.”
Arabian Amber is mysterious and sexy with notes of sandalwood and Egyptian bergamot.
Official Description: “As intense as a walk through the souk. This perfume emits all the mystery and excitement of the Middle East. A hint of Egyptian Bergamot trumpets the arrival of this scent followed by exotic ingredients that unfurl as the fragrance settles – a rich symphony of Atlas cedar wood Sandalwood from Mysore, Patchouli for Indonesia and Omani Golden Frankincense.”
Rajamusk is a lovely young, fresh fruity floral scent.
Official Description: “Another thrilling assemblage of fruits and flowers: this one has a conflation of pear blossom and redcurrant at the top creating a fizzy ripeness that is fit to burst. The heart is a floral clustering of lily of the valley and violet petals – weightless and feminine. And the base notes include white patchouli. A bewitching alchemy of freshness, sweetness and spice.”
This scent is definitely on my wish list. I love the idea of blending bergamot with citrus notes.
Official Description: “Bergamot blossom, as piquant and crisp as a summer’s walk through Mediterranean lemon groves cuts through the air – a scythe of scent molecules. The formula is a simple clutch of ingredients: Lemon, Blood Orange, Bergamot, Tunisian Neroli and Musk. But the pyrotechnic effect of all these explosive, heightened yet sweet and sharp citruses redefines what it is to smell Bergamot in the sunshine.”
Official Description: “A clarion call of succulent peach and bergamot opens this sumptuously melodic fragrance. Melting harmoniously into Ylang Ylang and golden saffron India, this beautifully evokes a hazy summer sunset of rich notes. Finally a base note of amber lends a resinous charm, anchoring the scent with a sweet depth.”
This scent sounds like it would be great for men as well as women who like a scent that smells more woodsy.
Official Description: “Exudes the dry and distinguished smell of the gentleman’s club. Top notes of Clary Sage and Clove Buds open this fragrance with a fanfare of herb and spice. The heart is a blast of Virginian Cedar Wood Tobacco leaves, as rich and moist as nestles in a pipe itself and devoid of any harmful nicotine. Finally the base of Labdanum adds a sostenato chord of sensuousness and depth.”
Official Description: “Jasmine, Muguet and Moroccan Rose dovetail the exquisitely complex smell of oud in this depth-charged feminine fragrance. The oud lends the flowers a smoky, yet honeyed resonance with hints of spice and wood while castoreum endows exotic warmth to the base.”
Heralded as the world’s first naturally red perfume, Scarlet Oud is one of the most unique scents that Illuminum has to offer.
Official Description: “Oud (also known as Agarwood) is the dark resinous heartwood that forms in Aquilaria trees (native to Southeast Asia). Oud has had ancient significance and religious connotations and is sometimes used as incense in temples. As a result this is a multilayered and complex scent redolent of thick smoke, honey, wood and green shoots. It is also the world’s first naturally scarlet scent!”
Finally, Wild Berry Blossom is a mature, sexy version of a fruity floral.
Official Description: “A reinterpretation of the classic fruity floral, avoiding all the clichés. A top note of cassis lends it a dark, bubbly froth on opening. At its heart lies wild berry blossom and peony for a sweet and subtle floral bouquet. At the base is cedarwood, anchoring these fruits and flowers with a smooth depth.”
I hope that you have enjoyed learning more about Illuminum, the British perfume company that created the Duchess of Cambridge’s wedding perfume! Don’t forget to like My Frugal Lady on Facebook and to follow this blog for more cool articles and info like this!
The five year old little girl in me squealed in delight when I saw the new Beuaty and the Beast teaser this week. I am beyond excited to see Emma Watson as Belle when the film premieres next year. So I thought I would put together a little post in honor of this new sneak peak at the film. This post highlights Emma Watson’s favorite beauty products.
According to a Twitter post that Emma shared in 2014, these are some of her favorite beauty products:
RMS Beauty Living Luminizer
According to this product’s description, the luminizer acts as a highlighter to illuminate your skin. Gisele Bundchen is a fan as well.
And according to an interview she gave with Marie Claire, these are some other products she also enjoys:
Lancôme Varnis In Love Nail Polish in Gris Angora
Emma said in her interview that she doesn’t typically like to paint her nails bright colors because she worries that the color won’t go with all of her outfits. But she said she loves this gray color because it will match more clothes. I think this is a pretty alternative to black nail polish, that may be more harsh against pastel Spring and Summer clothing, yet it is still neutral enough to go with many different outfits.
L’Oréal Pairs Colour Riche Lip Liner in Nudes for Life
This was a surprisingly one. Emma said in her interview with Marie Claire that she recently worked with a makeup artist who lined her lips perfectly with a nude lip liner. I normally use a darker lip liner one shade darker than my lipstick because I have a freckle on my lips I try to cover up but I think that this nude lip liner trick would work well if you are just going to use some pale gloss or a lighter lipstick.
And finally, my favorite part of this post is Emma’s favorite perfume which is Be Delicious by DKNY. I always love reading about celebrities favorite scents. This is the official description of the scent: “A modern feast for the senses. Served in a sleek metal and glass apple bottle, this juicy fragrance combines the scent of apple with a sophisticated blend of exotic flowers and sensual woods. Like the city that inspired it, Be Delicious celebrates individuality with refreshing spirit.”
I hope that you enjoyed reading about Emma Watson’s favorite beauty products! I can’t wait to see Beauty and the Beast when it finally premieres next year. 🙂 Don’t forget to like My Frugal Lady on Facebook!
She may not be a princess in real life, but Israeli actress Gal Gadot is portraying the most famous Amazonian goddess warrior princess of all time: Wonder Woman aka Princess Diana of Themyscira. To say I am excited is an understatement. I am a big Superman fan and even named both of my dogs in honor of the Superman comic books, but we have had numerous Superman movies AND Batman movies but no Wonder Woman film even though the Wonder Woman TV series in the 70s was really popular and Wonder Woman is one of the three most important founding members of the Justice League. I personally feel that is pretty unfair and we ladies are long overdue for a Wonder Woman film.
Picture from Gal Gadot’s social media, a sneak peak of Wonder Woman in her stand alone film which will premiere in 2017.
Wonder Woman is making her big screen debut today in Batman Vs Superman before she gets her very own stand alone film next year. (I have not been able to see B vs S yet, so please no spoilers in the comments section!) So, in honor of this major moment of cinematic history I would like to write a short blog post dedicated to the favorite perfume of the actress behind Wonder Woman. Gal Gadot’s fashion is not very well known just yet although I am sure we will see more of it now that she will be walking so many red carpets. However, I did manage to discover this short little interview on Youtube. In it, Gal divulges that her signature scent is Gucci Bamboo. I thought it was really great that she did not hesitate to name her favorite perfume since many women (especially women in the public eye) tend to be more tight lipped about what their favorite perfume is. But because I love perfume and write about it often, I decided to look up Gal’s favorite perfume.
Gucci Bamboo’s notes are official described as “Top notes of bergamot. Heart notes of casablanca lily and ylang ylang extra-comoros. Base notes of sandalwood.” I love Gucci purses with their signature bamboo handles, and this perfume comes with an equally iconic bamboo shaped bottle. Bergamot is one of my favorite scents and I like that this scent is anchored by the base note of sandalwood. It sounds like it would be a feminine, yet sexy scent. I am definitely going to track this one down and test it out.
Find Gucci Bamboo via this link on sale for a limited time:
And I am going to finish this post by leaving you with this brand new picture released today of Gal with some of her co-stars (including Robin Wright) in a promo picture from the Wonder Woman film. Those costumes look fierce!
Remember to follow My Frugal Lady on Facebook for other cool articles and pictures! ❤
I am a bit of a perfume junkie, and I love nothing more than to research the various perfume houses of my favorite royal ladies. In my opinion, Annick Goutal makes some of the very best perfumes in the world and Princess Marie-Chantal of Greece agrees as she proclaimed in a magazine interview that she loves their scents. Princess Diana is rumored to have experimented with their perfumes as well. Their scents are worn by countless movie stars and celebrities. However, Annick Goutal perfumes are harder to find, meaning that their scents are not overexposed and are still unique. When I was in college I knew quite a few girls who all wore the same scent and I think it is nice to find something unique to become your signature scent so that it feels more special. I think most women want to wear something a bit different and extraordinary. Annick Goutal specializes in niche perfumes. But unlike some other high profile brands, their scents are not too heavy or overpowering.
I was very happy indeed to see that Annick Goutal has created a brand new scent for Spring 2016. It’s called “Rose Pompon” and it is getting great reviews. It comes in their iconic perfume bottle but this version is a pretty pink color in keeping with the theme of one of it’s main notes: rose centifolia. The scent also includes notes of blackcurrant, raspberry, and pink pepper. It’s perfect for Spring and oh so French. Annick Goutal has recently created a Youtube channel that showcases some neat videos when they introduce a brand new scent. Here is the explanation for “Rose Pompon” by Annick’s daughter, Camille who took over her mother’s business when she passed away. There are subtitles in English.
There are only five Annick Goutal boutiques in the world. Two in New York, one in London, one in Paris, and one in Tokyo. But you can find Rose Pompon here via Neiman Marcus’ website.
If you have never experienced Annick Goutal perfume before I would also highly recommend that you try one of their most famous scents: Eau D’Hadrien.
Eau D’Hadrien is an iconic scent that comes in a perfume and cologne and is worn by so many celebrities it has to be one of Hollywood’s favorite fragrances. Famous public figures who wear this scent include Leonardo DiCaprio, Oprah, Celine Dion, and Steven Spielberg. Famous royals who are rumored to wear this scent include Prince Charles and Queen Noor of Jordan. In one of the videos that Camille speaks in on the official Youtube channel for Annick Goutal she describes how her mother, Annick would speak to Arabian princesses about perfume so this perfumery has been favored by royalty since its inception. You can find Eau D’Hadrien here.
I don’t know about you guys, but I am feeling so ready for warm weather to arrive and a nice fresh fragrance would be a great way to begin the Spring season.
The Frugal Lady
P.S. My laptop recently broke, which is a big bummer for a blogger. 😦 But I am hoping to get a replacement soon and am working on some longer blog posts for shoes for Spring and makeup trends so don’t forget to ‘like’ My Frugal Lady on Facebook for updates when a new blog post is published and I will get those finished ASAP!
For my birthday in December I was lucky enough to get Grace Kelly’s perfume as a birthday gift and I have been in love with it ever since. The perfume is called “Fleurissimo” by Creed and it was commissioned for Grace to wear on her wedding day to Prince Ranier of Monaco. I had been wanting that perfume for a really long time and I have not been disappointed with it. It has quickly become my favorite.
Now that I have Fleurissimo, I have another perfume that I am going to put on the top of my wish list: Audrey Hepburn’s. Her favorite perfume also happens to be by Creed, one of the best perfume houses in the world.
So first and foremost, let me give a brief description of Creed perfumes in general. I have written about perfume a lot on my blog. So many of you will know that I get migraines so I have to be careful about what perfume I wear. As a result, I have an interest in doing research on various perfumes in an effort to find ones that I can wear without triggering a migraine. Creed is a very old, historic perfumery. It was established in the 18th century and was Queen Victoria’s favorite perfume house. Queen Victoria suffered from headaches and migraines herself, so when I learned that she was able to wear Creed perfume comfortably in spite of her headaches I decided that I would try to find one for myself, too. It was at this point that I realized that some of my favorite royal ladies and movie stars wear Creed. First on my list was Grace Kelly and her iconic wedding perfume, Fleurissimo. Here is a picture of Fleurissimo and a link for where you can find it. It is a floral, powdery scent. The main notes that I can smell when I wear it are bergamot and tuberose.
After I got Fleurissimo as a gift, “Spring Flower” by Creed quickly went to the top of my wish list because I had read that it is one of Julia Roberts’ favorite perfumes. But when I did more research, I realized that “Spring Flower” was actually first created to be the signature scent for Audrey Hepburn in the 1980s. That made me want it even more, because as you guys can tell from my reference to “My Fair Lady” in the name of my blog, I am a HUGE Audrey Hepburn fan. Creed first created this scent for Audrey and Audrey alone. They wouldn’t sell it to anyone else out of respect for her. It wasn’t until after she passed away that “Spring Flower” became available to the public in 1996, and since then many Hollywood stars and royal women from throughout Europe have worn the scent. Audrey Hepburn was the epitome of the word “ladylike” after all, so it makes sense that so many famous women would want to emulate her. I have read that besides Julia Roberts, Princess Caroline of Monaco also wears this scent. I think that’s quite interesting considering that she is Princess Grace’s daughter. A love of Creed perfumes must run in the family! Gwyneth Paltrow also loves “Spring Flower” as well as the model, Naomi Campbell.
Spring Flower comes in a gorgeous pink bottle with a little floral bow. For people who love collecting scents this perfume is a must-have simply for the bottle alone, in addition to its historical significance as Audrey Hepburn’s favorite scent. But besides that, the description of the notes in this scent sounds very appealing to me.
Top notes for “Spring Flower” include peach, melon and apple. The middle or ‘heart notes’ are jasmine and rose and the base notes are musk and Creed’s signature ingredient: ambergris. “Fleurissimo” also includes ambergris as well as most of the very best perfumes in the world. This scent is best classified as a fruity-floral perfume. I am so happy to see that Audrey Hepburn wore a perfume with jasmine in it. I absolutely LOVE Jasmine. It’s one of my favorite scents. And it is delightful that this scent includes peach as well. Princess Diana loved peach scents, too. It sounds like such a feminine scent. Here is the beautiful “Spring Flower” and a link for where you can find it.
I decided to write this little post about “Spring Flower” for those of you who are looking for a nice Spring scent for Spring/Summer 2016. But Audrey wore this scent all year long. So maybe you would like to make it your signature scent, too?
If you have been following my blog a while you know that I have a great interest in perfume. I think that the perfume a woman chooses to wear tells you a lot about her taste and personality so I make it a hobby of mine to discover what perfumes royal ladies from around the world like to wear. The royal women of Spain all have really excellent taste in perfume. I do not speak Spanish, so it took a little more digging on my part to figure it out since American news organizations typically do not report on the Spanish royals very often. I would like to share the information I have found with all of my lovely readers, so I decided to put a concise list together to show you four of the most prominent royal women of Spain and their favorite or signature scents and where to find them. Enjoy!
Firstly, I discovered that King Juan Carlos himself actually revealed that his wife, Queen Sofia, loves Nina Ricci L’air du Temps perfume in a biography written about her. It’s in Spanish, but I managed to find the info translated into English in a few online royal forums. I am not really that surprised by this because L’air du Temps is actually a pretty well known perfume among royal watchers. Lots of royal women wear this scent but especially Queen Sofia of Spain, Princes Caroline of Monaco and possibly her mother Princess Grace, Queen Elizabeth II, Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother, Queen Noor of Jordan, and lots of others. Although most people think that Chanel no 5 is the most famous and elegant perfume in the world, I would say that from what I have read L’air du Temps is just as highly regarded by aristocratic and royal women for a few generations now. It may not be as highly publicized as Chanel perfumes, and it certainly isn’t as common (I can’t find it in any store near where I live in Tennessee) it is a go-to perfume for many royal ladies.
So here is the official explanation of Nina Ricci’s most famous perfume along with the description for the notes within the scent by the nose that created it:
“The timeless fragrance L’Air du temps by Nina Ricci that brought fame to the Ricci house became and remains until today one of the greatest fragrance creations. L’Air du Temps was created due to the great passion of Nina Ricci‘s son Robert for fragrances and the art of the master perfumer Francis Fabron. The fragrance was launched after World War II, in 1948, and the dove on the top is a symbol of peace.
The floral-spicy note of the carnation is in centre of its composition. Bergamot and rosewood support the development of the carnation theme, refined with the notes of rose and jasmine. Violet and iris give a powdery nuance, and create a harmony with the woodsy notes of cedar and sandal, while sensual musk and amber add the final feminine accord to the composition.”
From it’s description I would say that this perfume is a warm, spicy scent. Although it is a floral scent, the floral notes seem to be supported by woodsy elements, particularly the cedar and sandalwood, which is normally found in colognes for men. That makes it a bit unique as far as women’s perfumes from the 1940s go. Lots of women, myself included, enjoy a little bit of a woodsy scent to calm a strong floral. I adore Jasmine and always have, but what makes this perfume unique is the emphasis on carnations. The spice plus the carnation makes this perfume sound like it is warmer than some straight floral scents. Here is a picture of the famous bottle with the white doves to symbolize peace:
I also found this really pretty gift set. I think it’s very chic. Sometimes women like to spray perfume onto their skin and then wait for the dry down period to finish (about 15 minutes) before setting the scent with some of the scented lotion. It makes the perfume absorb into your skin and stay longer.
The brand new queen of Spain and Sofia’s daughter-in-law, Queen Letizia, is reported to be a fan of Bulgari’s perfume according to El Mundo magazine articles and other Spanish sources. I wasn’t surprised that Letizia liked Bulgari, but I was pleasantly surprised that she likes this particular scent since the main note is green tea which makes it a very fresh and clean scent. Perfumes with green tea as a main note are a little bit more unique or maybe even oriental but very elegant. I have mentioned this in my writing before, but I suffer from terrible migraines so I have to be careful about what scent I use. I have read that perfumes with Green Tea may actually have a soothing affect for headache sufferers since the perfume is less ‘heady’ in comparison to some other stronger scents. Here is the official description:
“Eau Parfumee au The Vert by Bvlgari is a Citrus Aromatic fragrance for women and men. Eau Parfumee au The Vert was launched in 1992. The nose behind this fragrance is Jean-Claude Ellena. Top notes are coriander, orange blossom, mandarin orange, bergamot, cardamom and lemon; middle notes are jasmine, lily-of-the-valley and bulgarian rose; base notes are sandalwood, amber, musk, green tea, precious woods and cedar.”
The description for this scent is fantastic. I would try this perfume in a heart beat and it is officially on my wishlist. I adore orange blossoms, mandarin oranges, jasmine, and Lily of the Valley. The fact that this is a unisex scent is a plus for me because I don’t tend to get migraines from a light cologne as much as I do if I wear a heavier, floral scent. Letizia is a very modern career woman and somehow this perfume seems to suit her personality really well. It’s clean and modern but still feminine. I want it! 🙂
Infanta (Princess) Elena is Letizia’s sister-in-law and the elder sister of her husband, King Felipe. According to Spanish magazines like El Mundo, she has been seen purchasing “Organza” by Givenchy on multiple occasions. Givenchy is a beautiful French brand that has most famously been associated with Audrey Hepburn who once described her style as being very laid back except for special occasions. Audrey said that if she ever had to go to anything important, she would wear Givenchy. So this is a very chic, oh so French perfume. Here is the official description:
“Organza is a magical mix of classical sensuality, delicacy and warmth, a hymn to eternal beauty possessed by every woman. An attractive bottle designed by Serge Manseau is the embodiment of virtues of this fragrance, which is oriental-floral, warm and sweet. It is composed of intoxicating notes of opulent white flowers: gardenia, tuberose and jasmine. The combination is incredibly exciting; soft vanilla in the base tames the voluptuous luxuriance of the floral heart.”
I really like white floral perfumes. And my all time favorite flowers are gardenias, I think their scent is the most recognizable and unique. However, anyone who knows anything about perfume will tell you that a good Gardenia perfume is the hardest scent to find. That’s because it is pretty much impossible to extract the oil of a gardenia flower-unlike roses which are naturally really oily-so anytime you read the description of a perfume and it says it contains gardenia as one of its notes the gardenia scent has been created synthetically. I would never buy a perfume that describes itself as being a gardenia perfume if it were made by a cheap company because if it is done wrong the scent can come across as dirty or too earthy. But since Givenchy is a very respected brand they are one of the few in the world I would trust. Royal women love wearing gardenia perfumes, especially on their wedding days. Princess Diana liked “Gardenia Passion” by Annick Goutal (my all time favorite perfume house, the very best) and Kate wore “White Gardenia Petals” by Illuminum on her wedding day. So this is a very princess-y scent.
Another good thing about this perfume is that it has vanilla in it. You really can’t go wrong with a little bit of vanilla. I thought it was just in my head, but I have noticed that I get the most compliments from men when I wear a perfume with vanilla in it. Then I read an article that supported my experiences by explaining how men are attracted to the smell of vanilla. It’s a biological thing, apparently. So you may want to give this scent a try. 🙂
Finally, Infanta Cristina reportedly enjoys Emporio Armani for Her. The packaging for this perfume is a bit unusual and pretty modern. Unlike her mother, Queen Sofia, Cristina has chosen a pretty new perfume that was only created in 1998. Here is the official description.
“Launched by the design house of Giorgio Armani in the year 1998. This flowery fragrance has a blend of fruit, jasmine, heliotrope, cedar, vanilla, and musk notes. It is recommended for evening wear.”
Like her sister, Elena, Cristina has opted for a fragrance with some vanilla in it. But out of all of the Spanish royals she is the only one to try a fruity scent, which is really youthful and more modern. Armani tends to be pretty sexy as well, so I am sure this fragrance is no exception.
Per popular request, I regularly write posts specifying which makeup brands and cosmetic products royal ladies wear. Previous posts include Catherine the Duchess of Cambridge, Pippa Middleton (although technically not royal), Queen Elizabeth II and Princess Grace of Monaco. This post dedicated to the favorite products of Diana, Princess of Wales is one that I have wanted to write for a long time. However, it has been a little bit difficult to put it together. Since I usually like to tell my readers exactly which products royals use and most importantly, where they can find them, Diana’s post has been challenging because many of her products have been discontinued since the 80s and 90s. So this post will feature some of the same exact products that Diana used (mostly her perfumes which are still in production to this day) as well as products that are very similar (so lipstick and eye shadow colors that she wore herself may have been discontinued since the 80s but the same makeup company may have a very similar product with a slightly different name). All of this information comes from a variety of sources including books, biographies, magazines/online articles, and online forums. I hope you enjoy it! 🙂
While Diana had a variety of perfumes that she would use interchangeably, here are a few that stand out as her favorites.
First, Diana’s wedding perfume. There is a cute little story that goes with this particular perfume that has become somewhat famous among royal watchers. Diana’s makeup artist, Barbara Daly, has told the story that on Diana’s wedding day she tried to put some perfume on her wrists AFTER she put her wedding dress on. Unfortunately, she managed to spill a bit on her dress and she panicked. Her quick thinking makeup artist told her to simple hold that spot on her dress as she was walking to make it seem like she was lifting the front of her dress so she didn’t step on it. You can clearly see Diana holding her hand over the front of her dress at the alter in an awkward way, that’s because she is trying to cover the wet spot from when the perfume spilled. Her wedding perfume was “Quelques Fleurs.” As you would expect, this is a very fancy perfume. If you have never heard of it before it is one of the most highly acclaimed perfumes in the world, comparable to Chanel no 5. The exact notes that are used in this scent have never been divulged but it is best described as a floral perfume, very appropriate for a wedding. Here is the official description:
“One of the most renowned and admired fragrances of all time, Quelques Fleurs L’Original forever changed floral fragrances when it became the first true multi-floral bouquet 90 years ago. A classic that has endured the test of time, the fragrance is wrapped in a theme of sculptured petals in a frosted French glass. The true Quelques Fleurs formula has never been published. An ancient formula still kept in the family archives, this fragrance will never be duplicated. This blend of soft, sensual florals uses over 250 different raw materials and more than 15,000 flowers to create just one ounce of Quelques Fleurs eau de parfum. To this day it is still produced in Grasse, France, where Jean Francois Houbigant first created his perfumes in 1775.”
It comes in a really elegant package. This is a luxury perfume, even more so than Chanel no 5, so not many people have it and it cannot be found in many stores.
But you can get it here via the Neiman Marcus website:
Diana married in 1981, so after that point she did experiment with different perfumes. Her former butler, Paul Burrell, wrote in his book, “A Royal Duty,” that her favorite perfume towards the end of her life became “Hermes 24 Faubourg” another luxury perfume albeit significantly less expensive compared to her wedding perfume. Diana had amazing taste in perfume. She especially liked white florals and sometimes peach as a heart note in the perfumes she chose. Always sweet and ladylike. Here is the official description of her favorite perfume:
“Perfume in the absolute. An explosion of white flowers, enveloping warmth, captivating sensuality.” Jean-Claude Ellena
A novel composed by Maurice Roucel in 1995, 24, Faubourg is an invitation to travel, with the sun as its destination. A sparkle of white flowers in the top notes, the radiance of a floral heart enveloped in irises, woods and mystery, while vanilla and ambergris set the tone for the sillage.
If a perfume is described as ‘absolute’ it is more concentrated and will last longer on your skin. The “sillage” refers to when a woman leaves the room and her perfume lingers in the air. So people will associate you with your signature scent. I like to consider myself a bit of a perfume aficionado. 🙂 The best perfumes in the world have ambergris in it so I am not surprised that Diana wore this.
Another favorite perfume was Diorissimo by Christian Dior. As a matter of fact, Diana loved Dior so much that they made an iconic bag for her after her divorce called the “Lady Dior” bag which you can see on the floor in the picture above. Diana loved the bag and had it in a few colors. “Diorissimo” is well known perfume among royal ladies. The more research I do on this topic, the more I realize that there are certain perfumes that royal women from around the world tend to gravitate to. Diorissimo is one of those perfumes. Princess Marie-Chantal of Greece is also a fan as was Princess Grace and her daughter, Princess Caroline. Princess Diana admired Grace very much. Grace attended the first function that Diana went to after she became engaged to the Prince of Wales. Diana became overwhelmed and started to cry in the bathroom and Grace comforted her. When Grace died in a car accident shortly after this Diana personally asked the Queen if she could be the one to attend Grace’s funeral as a representative of the British royal family to pay her respects.
Lady Diana and Princess Grace
Here is Diorissimo’s official description:
“First introduced in 1956 and inspired by Monsieur Dior’s favorite flower, the lily of the valley, Diorissimo is the definition of a true, timeless classic. Discover the fragrance now available as an elegant eau de parfum. This delicate, romantic fragrance features top notes of bergamot and calyx, middle notes of lily of the valley, jasmine, ylang ylang and lilac and a base of sandalwood.”
I absolutely love lily of the valley as well as jasmine. And it seems Diana did as well.
You can find it here at Saks 5th Avenue at a pretty reasonable price:
Another perfume that Diana liked was “L’air du Temps” by Nina Ricci for women. Again, this is a perfume that many royal women love, especially queens. This is Queen Sofia of Spain’s favorite perfume (her husband said so in her official biography) and is also worn by Queen Elizabeth II among others. How fitting that the “Queen of People’s Hearts” liked to wear a queenly perfume like L’air du Temps. It was created in the 1940s after the end of World War II as a way to celebrate the end of the war. That’s why it has its famous white dove topper, it is meant to symbolize peace. Here is a detailed description:
“The floral-spicy note of the carnation is in centre of its composition. Bergamot and rosewood support the development of the carnation theme, refined with the notes of rose and jasmine. Violet and iris give a powdery nuance, and create a harmony with the woodsy notes of cedar and sandal, while sensual musk and amber add the final feminine accord to the composition.”
This fragrance is a warm, spicy floral. I think it would be great for winter time, evening wear, or for the holidays especially since carnation is one of the most prominent notes. It is a little bit sexy but powdery, too so it smells clean. It is also one of the most reasonably priced perfumes that Diana wore, since she had expensive taste in perfumes.
You can find it here for $55, the best price I have every found:
Lastly, another perfume that Diana has been said to enjoy is Mitsouko for women by Guerlain, another well known and respected perfume house. This is perhaps the oldest scent that Diana used as it dates back to 1919 with the recipe staying pretty much the same throughout the 20th century. This scent is oriental and comes in a cool 1940s style bottle. Anytime that I have smelled a Guerlain fragrance I notice that the first spray seem pretty strong but then it mellows after the dry down period. Guerlain specializes in niche perfumes so they are pretty unique. The brand has been around for a really long time (like Creed, Chanel, Nina Ricci, etc). As a matter of fact, I have a little bottle of Shalimar by Guerlain that was my great-grandmother’s.
Here is the official description of the scent:
“In 1919, Europe was fascinated by Japan and the culture of the Far East. This was the moment when Jacques Guerlain named his new fragrance Mitsouko. Mitsouko means “mystery” in Japanese and symbolises passionate and mysterious femininity.
Its top notes include bergamot, its middle notes include peach, rose, iris, clove, and jasmine, and its base notes include vetiver, oakmoss, and labdanum.”
Diana was a big fan of Guerlain products in general as I will discuss later in the post. She was known to wear their makeup and moisturizer as well.
While finding Diana’s favorite perfumes was not too difficult, tracking down her favorite makeup products has proven to be more of a challenge. The brands themselves are well known (she liked Elizabeth Arden, Clarins, Max Factor,etc.) but most of the colors or products she used have been discontinued so I have found the closest colors and products by the same brands as a substitute. Makeup artist Clayton Howard worked with Diana for her first major photo shoot when her engagement to the Prince of Wales was announced. He created this face chart to show exactly what Diana used that day and I will show you how to find very similar, modern equivalents to what Diana used in the 80s.
The foundation that Diana used for her engagement pictures was from Max Factor. Diana used sheer foundation when she was in her 20s and then used something with more coverage in the 90s when she was a bit older.
I would recommend Max Factor Miracle Touch Illusion Foundation because it has a natural finish that isn’t cakey and it is easy to blend. It is hard to find in stores (especially where I live) so I would look for it on Amazon.
You can find it here for about $12 depending on which shade you choose and where you live.
While her engagement day face chart mentions that Diana used a blush stick, it fails to mention that she also loved a good Max Factor foundation stick. Max Factor’s current “Pan Stik” is cheap and loved by many frugal women. You use this when you are going to have your picture taken or are going on a date and know that they will be looking at you close-up. Basically, it offers a bit more coverage. You can use it alone or in addition to the liquid foundation. If you have any uneven areas or acne scaring it covers that area in an easy to use stick. And since it’s only 8 dollars you really can’t lose. Again, I can’t seem to find this particular product in stores so I am glad that online shopping has become so popular in the past ten years or so. Here is what it looks like:
For her engagement photos Diana used a Max Factor blusher stick that is no longer available but if you want to use the same brand Max Factor has a cream blush that will help achieve a similar English Rose glow to your cheeks.
The Max Factor lipstick called “Tint of Pink” that Diana wore is no longer available. However, Elizabeth Arden has moisturizing lipstick shades that are almost exactly the same as what Diana liked to wear her whole life. Try “Barely There,” “Pale Petal,” or “Sweet Pink” via the link below.
On her engagement day and in the early days of her life as a princess Diana loved Elizabeth Arden eye shadow duos. Her chart names “Timberland/Rice” as one of her favorites but that has since been discontinued. So I would recommend checking out “Cafe Au Leit” or “Tempting Taupe” instead. These are neutral eye shadow colors that Diana preferred.
The face chart also mentions that Diana wore an eye shadow called “Platinum Frost” as a highlighter (you use this under your eyebrow or in the corner of your eyes as a brightener). But nowadays Elizabeth Arden makes a single shaow called “Sugar Cube” that is the most similar to what Diana would use.
Lastly, Diana was well known for her love of eyeliner. And whileshe normally wore neutral eye shadow she did experiment with heavier eyeliner. During the early days of her public life she would wear Elizabeth Arden’s “Navy” eye liner but today the brand calls it “Sapphire” since it sounds more glamorous.
And when she was first engaged and throughout the 80s Diana would use Navy mascara to match her Navy eye liner to accentuate her blue eyes. Now Elizbaeth Arden calls their blue mascara “Ocean Blue” instead of “Navy.” Again, I suspect they made the change to make the color sound more glamorous.
I was particularly interested to discover what Diana did to keep her skin looking so fantastic. If you search for videos of Diana on Youtube you will find many people who met her in person who say that they were blown away by how beautiful her skin was. Well, it turns out that Diana worked really hard to keep her skin glowing. She had a rigorous skincare regime which included her mixing her own masks at home with avocado and egg whites among other things. By looking at pictures of Diana and hearing these anecdotes of how beautiful her skin was it may be difficult to believe that Diana actually suffered from Rosacea. It causes a lot of redness on the cheeks and nose and sometimes acne. Rosacea also has a tendency to flare up in really hot or really cold environments. It appears that Prince Harry has inherited the condition from his mother and maybe Prince William as well.
One of Diana’s secrets that she swore by was using rose oil on her skin in the morning before applying her moisturizer. This rose oil by Estee Lauder is a good one.
The very last thing that I will talk about may seem random since I don’t normally write about kitchen appliances in my blog, but hear me out, please. 🙂 I read in a few places that Diana was a great fan of juicing vegetables and fruits and would drink her concoctions every day. I didn’t believe that at first since juicing seems to have become popular after the millennium, but it seems that Diana was indeed ahead of her time in this respect. In a documentary film I watched recently on Diana’s life some of Diana’s friends (like Rosa Monkton) talked about her and reminisced about conversations they had had with her. A friend asked her “if you had to go to a desert island and could only bring one thing, what would you take?” and Diana replied her juicer because she could put twelve cucumbers in it and drink it with fruit juice and it would do wonders for her skin. So, this is apparently Diana’s big secret for keeping her skin healthy. This particular juicer is one of the most reasonably priced I have found online and is currently almost 50% off so I thought I would share this info with you guys in case you would like to try this. It makes sense to me since the health of your skin does come from what you eat and Diana was very knowledgeable about this.
So I decided to buy myself a juicer and try it. I mix cucumbers (which is what Diana loved) or kale, or spinach, with fruits like apples, oranges, pineapples, peaches, etc. I have found a bunch of free recipes online here. My skin is looking awesome and I am not getting as much hormonal acne around my chin, which normally would happen once a month. It looks clearer and brighter and I also have much more energy. I highly recommend it! I don’t do the diet juicing that some people do where they will only drink juice and not eat anything in order to lose weight so I haven’t really changed the rest of my eating habits. I strictly do it to improve my complexion and I have found that it also helps my digestion and gives me energy. I just drink a juice in the more for breakfast and continue to use a three step program on my skin with a cleanser, toner, and moisturizer. I have been using the three step program by Clinique for a few months. So far so good! 🙂
I hope that you have enjoyed this post on Diana’s favorite beauty products. I have more info that I can share so I may add on to this post in the future. I would also recommend reading another blog post I wrote called “Christmas Gift Ideas Part 1” because I wrote about a beautiful vanity set that Diana used and where to find it. You can find it under the tag for “British Royal Family” or “Princess Diana” on this site.
Many years ago historians had to really dig to figure out what cosmetics products a royal lady used. But nowadays with Twitter, phone cameras, and the fast paced nature of the internet it seems like we can gather more specific information about what royal women buy. If a royal lady goes to the mall and buys a certain lipstick it’s a safe bet that someone was watching and took note of it. Or, in the case of the Duchess of Cambridge, it is possible that a makeup artist that worked directly with the royal may come forward and reveal all. I don’t like to pry too deeply into royals’ personal lives but I am very interested in different skin care products and makeup. So you can imagine that I was pretty happy to discover that some of the products that Kate uses I have used myself. I guess maybe I feel that my taste in makeup has been royally validated, you know? 🙂
So, without further ado, here are the Duchess of Cambridge’s favorite skin care, makeup, hair care, and perfume products and where to find them. Enjoy! And feel free to share this post on your Facebook so that your friends, family, and significant other can read it and get the hint that you may want to add these products to your Christmas wish list. 😉
Hair and Nails
I think that probably the most famous aspect of Kate’s iconic look is her thick, healthy, bouncy hair. Some fashion bloggers and critics on online forums complain it is too long or that they don’t like her ‘fringe’ (‘bangs’ to us Americans). But no matter what you think of her new haircut you have to hand it to her: Kate has really healthy hair.
According to many sources including an article from ‘The Royal Fans’ blog called “What’s in Kate Middleton’s Beauty Bag?” Kate’s hairdresser James Pryce from London’s Richard Ward salon says the Duchess uses Kerastase Hair Rituals products. Apparently her stylist recommended that she used the line’s shampoo and conditioner for ‘dry’ hair to maintain it’s moisture. It’s called “Kerastase Nutritive Bain Oleo-Relax Smoothing Shampoo for Dry and Rebellious Hair.” That’s quite a mouthful, but it seems to be working for her!
The shampoo is normally $56 but I found it for $20. Score!
And her conditioner is called “Fondant Nutri-Thermique Thermo Reactive Intensive Nutrition Conditioner.” It’s normally $58 but I found it for $30. It seems to be a good conditioner for people who blow dry their hair a lot which means it would be really good for the cold winter months when we are less likely to let our hair dry naturally:
It has been reported that Kate visited the Jo Hansford Salon in London to get a manicure before her wedding day and when she did her manicurist, Marina Sandoval, chose this light shade for Kate. It’s called “Allure” by Essie and Kate has used it ever since.
Kate’s favorite skincare products were recommended to her by her dermatologist and are by Karin Herzog, who specializes in “luxury anti-aging” products using active oxygen. Apparently, Herzog was a medical researcher in Stockholm, Sweden and then developed this skin care line after retirement. His official website states that “Karin Herzog is the worldwide leader in oxygen-based skincare. It is the only range formulated with stabilized active oxygen, which acts as a rocket booster, propelling essential nutrients to the collagen producing cells.” Sounds impressive. 🙂 Kate uses this cleanser:
I am obsessed with figuring out which perfumes royal women wear. I happen to believe that a woman’s scent says a lot about her personality. British royal brides tend to wear perfume by Creed but Kate broke from tradition and used a perfume by a relatively new perfumery. Her wedding perfume was “White Gardenia Petals” and was made by Illuminum. Since it was publicized that she used the scent on her big day the perfume has become very popular. However, it is still hard to find unless you order it online. No stores where I live have even heard of this perfume house. The perfume is official described as “a delicate and refined scent – the top note of lily evokes a nostalgic summer ambiance, whilst heart notes of gardenia, Ylang Ylang, lily of the valley and jasmine breeze are sumptuous and feminine. Amber wood underscores this light bouquet. ” From the description it sounds divine. This perfume is more expensive. However, this is probably because gardenia is one of the heart notes of the scent. Gardenias are my favorite flower and real ones smell beautiful. But anyone who knows anything about perfume will tell you that the scent of a gardenia is very hard to capture accurately in a perfume. That’s because gardenias do not have the same type of oil that other flowers like roses have. So the oil from Gardenias cannot be naturally extracted like roses or other flowers. Instead, the smell of a Gardenia has to be synthetically created. And if a perfume is cheap they will not be able to do this well. Only the best perfume houses like Creed, Guerlain, and Annick Goutal can do it right. So Kate must have felt that this perfume was up to par with other high end, luxury perfumes. It has received great reviews and is described as being very classy and romantic. Kate has worn it again since her wedding day so this perfume is supposed to be a good scent for special occasion or daily use.
So according to “What’s in Kate Middleton’s Beauty Bag?” Kate wears YSL’s Touche Eclat ‘miracle’ makeup pen. Apparently, Julia Roberts, Victoria Beckham, and Demi Moore also love this product. It seems to be a real celebrity ‘must have’ product. You use it as a highlighter or eye brightener.
And here is a nifty youtube video on how to use it:
For her wedding day, Kate chose to work with Bobbi Brown cosmetics which is great since I have some experience using some of the same Bobbi Brown products myself. The makeup brand was so thrilled to announce that they would be helping her with her bridal makeup that they released a sketch detailing exactly which colors Kate used for her big day. Here it is!
Here are all of the products in the same exact colors that Kate used on her big day which she has continued to use up until this very day.
She used “Ivory” eyeshadow as a base all over her entire eye lid. I would also use this as a highlighter under the eye brow or at the corner of the eye.
And then the next part makes me really happy, because Kate used a Bobbi Brown shimmer brick and I have used them before myself! On her wedding day, she used “pink quartz’ shimmer brick as a bronzer. However, I have used the shimmer brick in the past as a blush AND as eyeshadow. It actually can be used for a few different things. It’s also really popular with lots of celebrities like Celine Dion who reportedly gave a bunch of the women who worked with her during one of her world tours a Bobbi Brown shimmer brick as a present. It’s a really great product and would make a good gift!
Since Kate tends to accentuate her eyes most when she does her makeup she tends to wear very pale or neutral lipstick and gloss. I also think this may be because Kate has thin lips and when a person has naturally thinner lips wearing dark or red lipstick emphasizes that fact. So it makes sense for Kate to wear a lighter shade of lipstick. According to Bobbi Brown Kate wore “Sandwash Pink” lipstick on her wedding day, which is a really pretty, delicate color.
I hope you have enjoyed an insider’s view into what Kate uses to stay looking princess-y. Kate’s mother-in-law’s favorite brands and products will be the subject of my next segment of “Royal Makeup and Cosmetics” when I focus on Princess Diana. So stay tuned!
September 14th is the 33rd anniversary of Princess Grace’s death. I think she was one of the great beauties of the 20th century so I would like to write a blog dedicated to what make-up and cosmetics products she used. Sometimes with fashion icons from the past it is difficult to replicate their make-up choices because they can be so dated. But Grace Kelly’s make-up before her wedding and in the early years of her marriage in the 1950s is so classic that it withstands the test of time. She always had a very ladylike, elegant way of wearing her make-up. It is not too difficult to apply either. Grace did her make-up herself even for formal state occasions after becoming a princess. I guess she had a lot of time to practice how to style her make-up when she was an actress so she knew how to do it herself.
Many of the products that Grace wore in the 1950s are no longer made, but thankfully some other products are still used today and their recipes or formulas have not changed all that much. In this blog I will either talk about the same exact products she used OR products that are a similar, modernized version of what she used from the designers she loved the most.
First, I will talk about the most iconic cosmetic that is associated with Grace Kelly: her perfume from her wedding day. Grace was a gorgeous bride with a stunning wedding dress that was copied by Kate Middleton when she married Prince William. Grace was loyal to designers she worked with for years in the film industry so she asked a costume designer named Helen Rose from MGM studios to make her dress. For her special day, the House of Grimaldi (Monaco’s royal family) commissioned Creed, the luxury perfume house, to make her a special wedding day perfume. The result is a classic scent called “Fleurissimo” or “beautiful flowers” made in 1956. The formula hasn’t changed much in 60 years and it is a favorite of Queen Elizabeth II, Princess Caroline of Monaco, and other famous actresses. Fleurissimo is a floral scent. But it is so beautifully done that it actually smells like real flowers. I have smelled it before and I was really impressed. Many floral perfumes may smell like flowers mixed with other notes making the perfume only vaguely resemble the smell of flowers. Fleurissimo actually smells like a bridal bouquet. I mostly smell tuberose, violets, and iris with bergamot. Bergamot is the top note that you smell first when you spray it on but after the dry down period on your skin you will mostly smell roses and violets. It smells like a fresh bouquet of flowers, so I can imagine that when Grace walked down the aisle people must have thought her wedding bouquet smelled really pretty not realizing that they weren’t just smelling her bouquet, but her perfume as well. It is definitely one of the best perfumes I have smelled. As you probably have guessed, this perfume is not cheap. Creed perfumes normally cost around $200 for a 2.5 ounce bottle. However, I have found Fleurissimo for $122 for 2.5 ounces at the link below (click the pictures and it will take you there).
I am glad that I was able to find it online and for this price because they don’t sell this particular scent in any of my local malls and it can be hard to find. I also found this cool little sample of the scent for $10 for .04 ounces. It is enough to use for maybe two days. That way, you can try the scent from this little sample before you buy it to see if you like it or if it works well with the natural scent of your skin since perfumes smell differently on every woman. If you are like me and can’t find this scent in stores I think it is important to smell a sample first before you invest in the full bottle. Here it is:
Next, I would like to talk about Grace’s make-up in the 1950s before and after she became a princess of Monaco. Due to the fact that there were limited cosmetics lines available in the 1950s and considering that Grace was a movie star before becoming a princess I can find more information about what brands she used than if I were writing about some of the other modern royals who tend to be very secretive about what they use.
On most days, Grace preferred a soft, natural eye brow that was a bit filled in for a youthful look. She never wore eyeliner under her eyes and generally would wear one solid color across the whole lid. She wouldn’t use eye shadow on the brow bone under her eyebrow itself, just on her lid. She tended to favor grey eye shadows and soft pastels with just a little mascara. The most important part of 1950s make-up is moisturized, hydrated skin. Women had the option to wear either cream or powder concealer but Grace had really pretty skin so she preferred to wear powder with a very light rouge that was almost the color of her skin, sort of a peachy color. She would apply it on her cheekbones, on her forehead, her nose, and lightly on her chin. Basically anywhere the sun would turn you pink first if you go out into the sun. Never too much, though, because Grace had very fair skin. Her make-up artist told her to make sure not to cry on her wedding day because the moment she started to cry her nose would turn bright red because of how fair she was.
Finally, during the day time, Grace would wear either light or dark pink lipsticks on most days. She believed that less was more when it came to make-up and when her daughter, Princess Caroline, started to come of age in the 1970s Grace would reportedly complain that she thought Caroline wore too much make-up, especially around her eyes. So this style of make-up in the 50s was more or less how Grace chose to wear her make-up her whole life.
Now, for evening wear or when she had to be more dressed up, Grace would lightly line her eyes with a gray eyeliner just on the top lash line and use a little more black mascara then during the day time. She would also wear a darker berry lipstick for a more glamorous look. Lipsticks were very important in the 1950s and many magazines from the time told women that they were practically naked if they left the house without face powder and lipstick on.
When it comes to brands, the 1950s gave way to some new cosmetics companies since people had more money to spend on make-up, whereas during the war in the 1940s people couldn’t afford to have more than one or two lipsticks.
According to a blog called “Hair and Makeup Artist Handbook” (http://hair-and-makeup-artist.com/womens-1950s-makeup/) most cosmetics were sold by Max Factor, Revlon, Pond, and then luxury companies Elizabeth Arden, Helena Rubinstein, and Boots. Avon started their business in the 1950s as well. Most of the cosmetics by Max Factor or Revlon that Grace would have used in the 1950s for her movies have been discontinued. However, I can say that many of the products by Helena Rubinstein, Boots, and some of Elizabeth Arden’s products have stayed mostly the same. Once she became a princess Grace was a huge fan of Dior cosmetics (as she loved their clothes) Givenchy, and Chanel.
First I’ll start with Helena Rubinstein, a company I honestly never heard of before I started researching what products Grace wore in the 1950s. It is expensive, but has great reviews. The neat thing about Helena Rubinstein in this decade is that this brand advertised their products by telling women what color palette works best for which hair color a lady has. Here is an article about it from “Glamour Daze”, a vintage make-up blog: http://glamourdaze.com/2013/10/the-1950s-fashion-look-according-to-helena-rubinstein.html . And from this article I got a nifty chart that shows what colors Helena Rubinstein recommended for blondes, which is probably what Grace’s make-up artists went by when they picked which colors to use for her.
Of course, rules have changed and I would say that many of the colors that Grace wore would be complimentary to women with any hair color, really. Make-up artists today tend to tell women to go by the color of their eyes, not their hair. But I believe a women really needs to just wear whatever makes her feel the most confident. I have dark brown/chestnut brown hair with very fair skin and dark brown eyes with dark eyebrows and I have always found that grey is a very complimentary eye shadow for me. I’m pretty sure it would work for someone with green eyes as well and it clearly looked great on Grace with her blue eyes.
Like I mentioned before, Helena Rubenstein products can be really expensive, at least in my opinion. A dual eye shadow compact costs about $70 on average. Most of the colors I found on sale were at least $55; however, I managed to find this compact for $9.95, which is really extraordinary. And it’s the perfect shade for the 1950s Grace Kelly look, too. It’s called “Grey Glance” and is a very similar shade to what Grace would use on her entire eyelid, plus this compact has a white shimmery shade as well that can be used as a highlighter in the corner of the eyes to open your eyes a bit or under your eyebrow to give some extra shimmer and update this look a bit to make it more modern.
For Grace’s more casual daytime look I recommend “Cosmic Praline.” Here it is for $32.
Both the eye shadow and lipstick above would give you a look similar to the one in this picture of Grace:
You could also try this shade called “Luminous Coral” since coral lipstick was very, very in fashion in the 1950s.
The next brand that Grace wore often is Dior which happens to be a brand I really love, too. But again, it can be more expensive. I personally find that it is worth it to invest in good make-up, though. I used to be able to wear any brand at all until I was 24 and developed a horrible allergic reaction to cheap, drug store make-up. It makes my eyes swell shut. Now I have to do my research and make sure to choose quality make-up. Princess Diana also loved Dior clothing and cosmetics. Dior custom made an iconic purse for Diana after her divorce called “Lady Dior” that is still widely used by many celebrities today.
At my local mall a single eye shadow from Dior costs about $35 but I found it here for $25. This shade is called “Graphic Grey” and again, it looks like something Grace wore often judging by the pictures I have studied of her and other info I have read in books and articles online. I think Dior is a great quality eye shadow.
I personally really love the quad eye shadow palettes that Dior puts together because they specifically choose the colors that coordinate together and I find that it makes it easier for me when I apply it. I also like when there is a darker color in the quad that I can use to line my lash line because I don’t always want to use eyeliner. Sometimes an eye shadow can be enough to line the eye especially if you are trying to achieve the 1950s look. Many women in the 50s loved to use a lot of eyeliner for a cat eye look but Grace really didn’t do that so a quad like this one is perfect for what she would do. It’s called “Dawn Grey” and it has a nice white shadow to use as a highlighter plus a darker gray to line the eyes when you want a more dramatic look in addition to two pretty light and medium grey shades. I like it a lot.
This quad would be especially helpful if you want to achieve Grace’s nighttime look. Keeping that in mind, this beautiful lipstick by Dior called “Dolce Vita” looks like something Grace would wear. It’s a really good quality lipstick that can’t be found too easily in stores and it lines the lips nicely without having to use a lip liner with it.
Finally, this mascara is probably the best I have ever used. I first got it as a birthday gift when I was 17 and it is fantastic. Mascara was really important in the 1950s and although the kind of mascara that was used at that time is not produced anymore considering Grace’s love of Dior this mascara seems like it would be the closest modern equivalent to what she would have used.
Together the eye shadow quad, lip stick, and mascara would help you achieve the look Grace has in this picture.
Givenchy was another favorite brand of Grace’s. Audrey Hepburn also loved the brand and wore their cosmetics and their clothing. Pastel eye shadows are a very important part of the Grace Kelly, 1950s look to balance a darker lipstick. This beautiful compact from Givenchy has four lovely very light pastel shades. It looks a lot like what Grace would wear in her Alfred Hitchcock movies in the 50s.
Now, this brand was not used by Grace herself, but Nars did create a lipstick named “Grace” that does look like some of the lipsticks that Grace wore during the 1950s and I bet it would look great with the light pastels in the Givenchy quad. I think it’s a really pretty color.
Occasionally, if she attended a really glamorous evening event, Grace would wear deep red lipstick but it would always be balanced by very light eye make-up. So she would wear something similar to Givenchy’s nude eye shadow like this one:
Or Dior’s “Nude Pink Design” palette.
Then, she would line her upper lash line with a black eye liner. It wouldn’t be directly on the lash line, not too thick.
Liquid eye liner would work as well as long as you have a very steady hand and can apply it carefully directly on the lash line.
She would finish with a lot of mascara. Again, I recommend this Dior mascara.
But there is also this one by Givenchy with a really unique brush that helps curl eye lashes.
And finally, her lipstick would be something like this one. This lipstick is called “Marilyn” by Dior and was named after another fashion icon of the 50s, Marilyn Monroe. But many movie stars from this time wore this shade.
This is how Grace looked with her more glamorous, evening make-up.
I’d like to finish this blog with a few book recommendations. The first is a New York Times bestselling biography called “Grace Kelly: The Secret Lives of a Princess.” Sometimes when a person watches Grace’s movies or looks at her modeling pictures it may be easy to assume that Grace was aloof or stand-offish. And some people believe in the idea that she was an ice queen, which I think is quite unfair. James Spada debunks that myth with this biography. She was actually very witty and funny, but very shy.
“A Touch of Grace: How to Be a Princess the Grace Kelly Way” is written by film historian Cindy De La Hoz. It’s a fun little book full of trivia about Grace’s fashion and lots of quotes and personal anecdotes.
I hoped you liked this blog about Princess Grace of Monaco’s make-up and cosmetics and that it inspired you to put together your own ladylike, 1950s look. 🙂
This is the second part of my post dedicated to the perfumes that the ladies of the British royal family wear. Since I finished part one with Queen Elizabeth, The Queen Mother, it seems fitting that I should begin this post with her namesake and eldest daughter, Queen Elizabeth II. (And can I just say that I would love to have her earrings and necklace in this picture? And maybe the brooch, too? 😛 )
As I said in part one, Her Majesty also wears her mother’s favorite perfume, L’Heure Bleue, as a tribute to her. However, the queen is also said to enjoy wearing Fleurissimo by Creed, which was created for Princess Grace for her wedding day and seems to be a favorite among many royals. She also reportedly wears Chloe’s Narcisse. This one really surprised me because it is a relatively inexpensive perfume compared to the other perfumes she is reported to enjoy wearing. It was created by Karl Lagerfeld, the famous designer at Chanel. I have never smelled this one but it is described as an ‘oriental floral’ perfume. I have worn and loved another lighter Chloe perfume, though. I have to say that I always got compliments on it when I wore it. You can find Narcisse online here at this picture link. Then there is the queen’s little sister, Princess Margaret. She was an incredibly fashionable woman, much more adventurous with her clothing than the queen ever could be. However, she always seemed to me to be a bit troubled and melancholy in her later years. I think this has to do with the fact that she was not allowed to marry Peter Townsend when she was in her early twenties because he was a divorcee. This heartache was later fictionalized and served as the inspiration for Audrey Hepburn’s Oscar winning performance in “Roman Holiday.” But those who knew her well when she was young described her as being very social and the life of the party with a spirited sense of humor.
Her favorite perfume was Oscar De La Renta’s “Volupte.” You can still find it on amazon.com and for really cheap, too. However, they are no longer making this perfume so if you would like to try it now I am not sure how long it will last before it is all sold out:
Next I am going to talk about one of the most beautiful, fashionable, and most photographed women in the world: Diana, Princess of Wales. Reportedly, Diana loved many different types of perfumes in her life and her taste changed from her engagement in the 80s to after her divorce in the 90s. Her favorite perfumes may have included Hermes 24 Faubourg, Diorissimo, Lanvin Arpege, Penhaligons, and Isis.
There is a really cute story about Diana and her perfume. Apparently Lady Diana accidentally spilled some perfume on her dress the morning of her wedding day when she tried to put some on her wrist. She was so nervous her hands were shaking. Her make-up artist told the story for years afterwards and claims that she told Diana to try and cover the wet spot on her dress where the dress spilled by holding her dress in her hand like she was lifting her skirt to walk. If you watch the footage of Diana’s wedding you can see her scrunching up her dress in her hand and that was the spot where the perfume spilled. The perfume that she wore on her wedding day was Quelques Fleurs by Houbigant.
The last royal lady that I will talk about in this post is Catherine, the Duchess of Cambridge. No one really knows what Kate wears on a daily basis. But we do know that she wore White Gardenia Petals by Illuminum on her wedding day. It can be found her on amazon.com for $100:
Now $100 is pretty expensive. But the scent of gardenia is really hard to get right in a perfume because the gardenia flower does not have an oil that can be extracted the same way that the oil of the rose can be so perfumeries need to make the gardenia scent synthetically. Many times I have smelled so-called gardenia perfumes that are cheap and they smell like dirt or too earthy. So in order for someone to get a perfume that really smells like gardenia they would need to buy a more expensive perfume from a designer who knows how to do it right. Personally, gardenia is my favorite scent and I would love to try this perfume. It would be the perfect wedding day scent for a spring or summer bride.
Thanks for reading part two of my post on British royal perfumes. I hope you enjoyed it!
The Frugal Lady