Dear Caroline

Q I’M taking my girlfriend out to dinner at a beautiful restaurant in a few days for our first anniversary.

Q I’M taking my girlfriend out to dinner at a beautiful restaurant in a few days for our first anniversary. I have bought her a black with silver floor-length dress for Christmas that she’ll wear that evening and I’d like to get her a bit of make-up to go with it.

She is very pretty, has blue eyes and likes to wear smoky eyes and natural lips when she goes out. Is there anything in particular I should get?

A. Well done – for the lovely gifts – and knowing what she actually likes! You’d be surprised how many men don’t! So many things for you to choose from, where do I start?

The first thing I’m going to suggest to you is go and have a look at the MAC gift sets – they are beautiful and elegant and it sounds as though you and your girlfriend would really appreciate them.

If you’re not sure where to go, MAC is in Fenwick, Newcastle, and House of Fraser in the MetroCentre.

For future reference you can order online, www.mac cosmetics. To create the perfect make-up for your girlfriend, go for the bejewelled, ruby faux snakeskin encased eye shadow palette called Fascinating Ruby. This contains six must-have eye shadows specifically put together for a smoky eye. (£30).

For her lips, go for a set named Adoring Carmine, which contains three neutral lip colours – two lipsticks and one lip gloss. (£28). This comes in a sweet little drawstring purse of red-orange patent with wine satin gusset sides that will look great with the eye shadow palette.

For the finishing touch to this look, lashes, mascara and liner are a must – go for Enchanting Vermilion; Fashion Eye Kit.

This red on red patent with satin stripes is made to co-ordinate with the other sets I’ve mentioned and contains MAC’s best-selling #7 lashes, a black Fluidline (eyeliner), the ever popular and sought-after glitter liner, a black mascara and an eyeliner brush! All for £36.50!

She would also adore Charming Garnet; Glamour Basics.

Similarly packaged, this set contains an iridescent face powder called Belightful, a lip shine called Bare, a black eye kohl and mascara (£31).

If you go in and the particular gift sets I have recommended have sold out, get any of the MAC make-up artists on counter to help you either choose fab colours from the permanent range which would be great put into a make-up bag and gift-wrapped, or choose an alternative holiday set and get them to recommend one extra eye shadow which, when added to the colours in the alternative set, will make a smoky eye.

You should be spoilt for choice with all these recommendations and your girlfriend would be thrilled to receive any of the things I have mentioned.

I’m not writing a diary piece this week as I’ve been off work. I know – lucky me! No alarm clocks, Christmas shopping on weekdays, rather than the busy weekends, etc, etc … so I think it’s not best to write about that, just enjoy! Instead I’m going to do a quick, last-minute make-up shopping guide.

This is for those of you who just haven’t had time or are still scratching your head on what to buy. So, top of the list – the extremely popular MAC brush sets, only available at Christmas, fab packaging, extremely fab pricing (£34 - £40), limited edition, short coloured handles and useful in the extreme, even if the person you are buying for already has brushes.

Here is an easy guide to the also popular eye shadow palettes.

For the person who likes eye colours in neutrals, soft blues and pinks with a dark tone to strengthen, Devoted Poppy – Classic eyes.

For the person who likes a smoky eye, Fascinating Ruby – Smoky eyes.

For the person who likes earthy colours like warm browns and a dark green, Intriguing Scarlet – Warm eyes.

And finally, for the person who likes pretty purples and blues Infatuating Rose – Cool eyes.

Now for the lips; you have even more choice but for an ethical gift every single penny raised from the sales of the Viva Glam sets will go to organisations around the world to help men, women and children living with, or affected by HIV/Aids.

There are also two sets of glitters and pigments in the Little Darlings range, one with warm colours such as gold and melon, and one in cool tones, such as, mauve and teal.

Finally, also from the Little Darlings range, must-have eye pencils – these are gorgeous pencils in a mixture of classic and fun. There are no excuses now! Happy holidays!


David Whetstone
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