Sunday, 24 May 2009
Today, Sunday the 24th of March, marks the finale of one and a half weeks of glamorous festivities on the sunny French Riviera. Warm up began with the Cannes Film Festivals where A-list Hollywood stars, directors and producers converged on European soil and put their latest motion pictures up for critique and scrutiny of top film pundits. Drifting east of Cannes along the coast of France, the road eventually leads to the small but dreamy principality of Monaco. If Cancun is the sin city for American university students and Las Vegas the city of gambling and prostitutes for soon to be married bachelors, then Monaco is the playground of obscenely wealthy billionaires. And for racing drivers the Monaco Grand Prix is the most prestigious race, if not the most prestigious sporting event to win, and today British racing driver Jenson Button commemorated for his magnificent triumph at the urban circuit.
20 minutes away from the country 33,000 inhabitants is Nice airport where private Cessna and Gulfstream aircrafts have swarmed the landing grounds like seagulls on an abandoned pier. Equally astonishing is overcrowded beach pier where yachts the size of family homes are docked to let the jet set playboys spectate the race close to the roaring engines of 20 Formula 1 cars while their female chaperones are working on their tans on the upper decks. This year’s Moby Dick is Indian billionaire Vijay Malay’s mega yatch which was the largest one at the Formula 1 spectacle this weekend. With traditions stretching back to the 1920 the Monaco Grand Prix is equally as enchanting every year. Here the wealthy and famous George Lucas get to spend a weekend in a utopia of rosé champagne and Mediterranean extravaganza. It’s the one time and one place during the year when money can be spent guilt-free. In Monaco the word recession is an alien word that is nowhere to be found in the dictionaries, but tax evasion is a highly familiar terms as many racing drivers and business owners relocate their residence to this land of no income tax. A flock of British high income earners are bound to pack their Dunhill brief cases and Richard James shirt, and move to lavish Monaco now when UK income tax for the rich has been increased to distressing 50%.
Consumption in the capital city, Monte Carlo, is beyond the levels of premium and luxury and is the stratosphere of excess where buying a Ferrari F430 Scuderia or a hillside mansion on impulse is not considered to be beyond reason. Even focused racing teams are drawn into the flaunting and self indulgence by hosting lavish parties for VIP guests, Sponsors and team members. Mclaren Mercedes takes it a bit further by giving their drivers a healthy dose of diamond Monaco every year. Reigning world champion and Monaco 2008 winner, Lewis Hamilton, had the number “1” studded on to his bright yellow helmet this weekend. Other endorsed merchandise worn by driver such as Hublot, Tag Heuer and Certina wrist watches were admirably kept clear of precious stones. One of the ten commandments of men’s fashion says that “thou shall not twinkle like a little star”. Men shall therefore keep diamonds and pearls to a minimum and devoid of sparkling wrist watches and bracelets excessively studded with diamonds.
Envy and hatred lurk like snakes in the grass and diamonds have a tendency to attract unwanted looks and be social frowned upon. Notably heated, is the discussion regarding the origin of diamonds and social responsibility should be at the forefront when buying diamonds to ensure that greedy middle men in Antwerp have obtained the very diamonds you want to buy, in the most ethical and morally correct way possible. If diamonds don’t have a dark cloud and a history of blood covered hands, then proceed with buying a watch with diamond dials. Despite their better suitability for women, diamonds are beautiful and the Rolex watches pictured are a respectable of carrying beautiful stones without compromising your image or social status.
Friday, 22 May 2009
While revising hard for my final exams I’ve leaned on the shoulders of piano and photography for comfort and work balance. Piano play and photography are excellent hobbies for escaping reality because they don’t involve any heavy thought processing or written words. Silence is golden, in fact, most things in life are best enjoyed when no words are spoken like eating, having sex, swimming. Therefore the new supplement this website, Monochrome Finery, will comprise of just black & white photographs and no more words beyond the title of each post. No elaborate planning or high ambitions are pillar supporting the photo blog. It will merely serve as a way for me to exhibit my premature work as an amateur photographer, sort of like a diary to follow my own progress.
Wednesday, 20 May 2009
The essentials: Cleanser and moisturiser
Regardless of interest in body and facial care there are two products that should be in the cabinets behind every foggy bathroom mirror, and those are a facial cleanser and a facial moisturiser. Under no circumstance should any product baring the word soap be used on the face because soap is made using chemicals and chemicals corrode the skin. Cutting corners by using hand soap lead to nasty skin irritation, dryness or even a rash. The benefit is using cleaners composed of natural ingredients is minimal damage made to the skin. Look for names like ginseng, avocado, menthol and juniper on labels for both cleansers and moisturisers. Both products can be used before going to sleep at night and right after waking up in the morning. The latter being more important than the former as water to the face makes the body alert and ready for a good day.
The extras: Facial scrub
Deep cleaning is revitalizing whatever object is receiving the treatment. The sensation afterwards is refreshing newness and joyous rebirth. Persian marble floors receive a scrub every now and then and so should the face too, and that is done using a facial scrub. What distinguish a scrub from a facial cleanser is near microscopic fragment of crushed apricot or walnut seeds working down clogged pores and oily skin layers, increasing the breathability of the skin. Given a scrub contain tiny hard particles one monthly deep cleaning is enough to maintain a fresh and well nurtured skin.
The luxury: Natural shaving crème and anti-ageing crème
Self inflicted cuts with a poor shaving blade or simply poor shaving is one of the reasons why shaving is one of the most harmful treatment given to the skin. Therefore no expenses should be spared for a nurturing shaving crème and friendly shaving blades. Bumps, cuts and bruised skin are common penalties awarded to those who compromise their shaving. The more natural the product is, the less likely it is that it will irritate the skin, and to break your reality, natural shaving crèmes do not come in aluminium cans and neither do they foam. But it’s worth mentioning that synthetic and above mid-range products available in supermarkets do suffice in protecting the skin during a close shave.
When the adult land marking age of 20 is reached, ageing is not an inevitability but a current and an accelerating process. No one likes being called old and by default, buying anti-ageing products is a self proclamation of being old. Ironing out wrinkles and lines that show signs of ageing, a crème of this type is quite a dazzling experience. After application to the face there is a few magical seconds of the face heating and tightening up, but is sadly not followed by the reverse ageing affect of Benjamin Button.