Musings of a self-confessed beauty addict from the heart of London!

Sunday, 9 January 2011

Putting on the Ritz

Today my lovely husband took me to Belga Queen for lunch. We've been in living in Brussels for almost 3 years now, and I'd never yet had the opportunity to go there until now. With it's swanky art deco surroundings and magnificent stained glass ceiling it's one of Brussels' most well-known hot-spots. It certainly didn't disappoint, and we dined lavishly on a tower of seafood amidst the tall columns and scattered displays of modern art.

Going to such a lovely place meant that for the first time in ages I actually got to think about what to wear (Brussels isn't exactly a fashion capital and I've been getting away with slobbing about in jeans and Converse for far too long... booooring!). So, I opted for a 50's look with a tweed, ruched pencil skirt with a cute little cardi and high-heeled Mary-Janes. I only wish I could have gone to town with my make-up. At the moment I have a horrible bout of conjunctivitis and so I've been in glasses with no eye make-up for the whole of this week which was fine because I was at home nursing a cold, but when I go out I feel naked with nothing on my eyes, especially if I'm going somewhere a bit posh.
Since I first discovered at the age of 13 how the simple application of eye shadow can alter the face (both when applied well and atrociously) I have always felt naked without some form of eye make-up. Of course, at the age of 13 I applied it atrociously, and liberally, and in the the wrong colour, but I thought I looked great! I certainly felt amazing when I had it on and my eyeshadow of choice (pilfered from my mum's rarely used make-up bag) was a garish emerald green shimmer by Charles of the Ritz.
Before the days of Prescriptives, Charles of the Ritz offered custom blended face powder

Charles of the Ritz!! Such a great name, and sadly the company no longer exists, probably due to the fact that it was born in a bygone era (created in 1919 by the hairdresser Charles Jundt of the New York Ritz) from which it couldn't quite escape and develop. I myself had never heard of Charles of the Ritz outside of the little eye-shadow in mum's make-up bag and apparently it existed right up until 2002!
Wikipedia states that Charles of the Ritz criticized Estee Lauder's practice of giving away free samples and gifts with purchase, saying "you will never go anywhere in this industry." No comment...
A Charles of the Ritz counter

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