Lillian Bull's Fashion Blog

Furtuna Skin's Founder on Launching a Made-In-Italy Beauty Brand in the Age of Coronavirus

A few years ago, when spring was in full bloom in Sicily, Pasquale M. Marino—who we fondly call “Mimmo”—took my business partner, Kim Walls, and I on a guided tour of the unspoiled 750 acres our family owns in the Italian countryside. In his rich accent, Mimmo, an esteemed Italian botanist who runs our La Furtuna estate—land that once belonged to my husband’s grandmother, and that we bought and began expanding in 2009—guided us through the olive groves, showing us all the plants and medicinal herbs on the farm and explaining the deep and fascinating history of the region. As we walked along the outer paths, Mimmo pointed out his favorite flower, the brilliant Anchusa azurea plant, and waxed poetic about its long medicinal history.

Anti-inflammatory and immune-boosting–with the highest level of antioxidants in any edible Mediterranean plant—the brilliant blue bloom became the cornerstone of Furtuna Skin, a clean beauty brand that Kim and I started to give women truly transparent, organic products that provide real results using the bioactives we harness from wild-foraged plants found on the farm. After many months of testing, formulating, and reformulating, we launched our first product in November, and we’ve been working to bring other essentials to the market ever since. Over 95% of our team is Italian, which includes a broad range of contributors from skincare experts and biochemists to local Scicilian botanists and farmers who help forage the rare plants from the farm. So this month, just as we were finalizing our next trip to visit all of the Italian makers we work with ahead of a host of new launches featured in the April issue of Vogue, collaborators like Gianni— a third-generation soap maker who has walked us through the ancient Venetian districts, sharing stories about how the local sausage makers used to sell his father, and his grandfather before him, lard for their artisanal soap bars—started sending us real-time Slack updates about who was shutting down, who couldn't finish a job, who could pick up a job, and how COVID-19 was ravaging the Italian way of life. Luckily, no one from our team has gotten sick, but our scientists, manufacturers and farm members are all in isolation until April 3, and many events have been cancelled, through May at the earliest.

We started dealing with the crisis of this global pandemic long before most American companies, and one thing that we have learned is that the creativity of the human spirit is truly inspiring. While some of our new launches have been pushed back (waitlists for these products are live on our site now), our scientists and academics are using this time to work on new ingredient development and are doing a lot of original research at their home labs so we can continue to innovate in the natural beauty space. And while Mimmo and some of the other farmers still go by the farm to check on everything we’re growing—always in solo shifts, never together—the whole property is fed by natural spring water through irrigation channels that are already set up, and as the plants that we use are wild-foraged they have each other to rely on until we can get back to them.

As things continue to develop, our love and appreciation for our friends in Italy continues to grow. We are supporting those people directly impacted by the virus through charitable efforts in partnership with the Italian medical community, specifically The Luigi Sacco Hospital and The San Raffaele Hospital. And in the long term, as a significant economic crisis looms, the most important thing that we can do to support our team is to ensure that we can continue to provide them with work. Everyone who is a part of our Furtuna family is still getting paid through this challenging time, and they’ll also have jobs to come back to.

We’ve also become acutely aware that human touch is critical to our ability to connect with one another and ourselves in meaningful ways—especially as the absence of these kinds of connections is now being felt by so many of us. We built our brand with an emphasis around wellbeing rituals, and now more than ever we want people to take care of themselves. Our hope is that skin care can provide a moment of reprieve to people while they’re sheltering at home. Take the time to breath deeply, enjoy the stress-reducing benefits of lightly tapping and massaging products into your skin to stimulate your lymphatic system, and practice gratitude. Italians are all about living a good life with loved ones, eating good food, and feeling good; our primary labs just outside of Milan have a full espresso bar in their facility, and they insist that work begins with the world’s best espresso and pauses for the world’s best wine at lunch. Our goal is to continue learning from these core Italian values—now, and in the future, when hopefully this is all behind us.
+ نوشته شده در چهارشنبه 6 فروردين 1399ساعت 12:04 توسط lillianbull | | تعداد بازدید : 1

This is how much sunscreen you should be using to prevent sun damage

Since we're right in the middle of a hot summer, there's no better time to re-examine the age-old topic of sunscreen. Here, New York City dermatologist and self-proclaimed sunscreen fanatic, Marnie Nussbaum, MD—a go-to for models during fashion week—breaks down everything you've ever wanted to know about SPF.
Do I really need to wear sunscreen every day?

Absolutely! Rain or shine, hot or cold weather... we must wear sunscreen daily, as the UV rays that cause skin cancer and ageing are present regardless of temperature and even clouds. Both UVA and UVB rays contribute to skin cancer formation. UVA rays penetrate deeper and are also the cause of premature ageing and skin breakdown, while UVB rays are shorter in wavelength and cause the skin to burn. UVA rays even penetrate windows; therefore, even if you are driving or sitting at a desk all day, you may be exposed to harmful UV rays. UVA rays remain at relatively the same level all day, while UVB rays peak midday. Even if you are running around doing errands all day, your incidental sun damage truly adds up!
Does sunscreen expire?

In general, most sunscreens have an expiration date and should absolutely not be used past that date (usually three years from manufacturing). However, many factors may make the sunscreen less potent than originally intended, including heat exposure (leaving it by the pool or in hot cars, etc). Chemical sunscreens usually have ingredients like oxybenzone and avobenzone that can oxidise and become less effective over time. Mineral sunscreens that contain zinc or titanium are usually more stable, but the formulation can degrade over time, causing separation of ingredients and causing the lotion to become grainy or watery and, therefore, not properly effective. Furthermore, frequent opening and closing of the bottle can allow for bacteria build-up within the lotion, wreaking havoc on skin. If you are using sunscreen properly (daily and reapplying every two hours), you should be going through bottles way before the expiration date. If it has been over a year with the same sunscreen, you are not using enough!
How often should you replace your sunscreen?

If a summer has gone by and you are not finished with a bottle of sunscreen, you are not applying it as frequently or as generously as recommended! I recommend a tablespoon for the face and a full shot glass for the body every two hours, or more frequently if you swim or sweat (even if it says it's water-resistant). You should not see any changes in consistency. If you see clumping or graininess, the sunscreen is likely not at its intended potency. Also, if a bottle begins to smell funny, it may be a sign of bacterial contamination. When in doubt, replace.
What's the difference between SPF 50 and SPF 75?

SPF is a number that says the time it would take for the sun's UVB radiation to cause redness to the skin when using the sunscreen exactly as directed versus the time it would take without any sunscreen. Therefore, in a perfect world, SPF 30 means it would take 30 times longer for the skin to burn than compared to not using anything. However, very rarely is sunscreen used exactly as directed. Also, genetics vary, therefore, someone may need much more than SPF 30 for protection versus another person. Studies have shown that people get a false sense of security when using higher SPFs and stay in the sun much longer and rarely reapply. Most dermatologists recommend everyone use at least SPF 30 or higher. It should be applied 30 minutes prior to going outside and reapplied every two hours or sooner if swimming or sweating. Lastly, SPF numbers are not linear; meaning, SPF 100 is not double the protection of SPF 50. Sunscreens with an SPF of 30 protect against 97 percent of UVB rays while SPF 45 protects against 98 percent. To note, SPF only refers to UVB protection, not UVA. Therefore, always look for a sunscreen that says broad-spectrum (protects against both UVA and UVB rays).
How much SPF do you recommend for everyday use during the summer?

I always recommend at least SPF 30 or above on all exposed areas, including the face, neck, chest, hands, and tops of ears.
After how many hours should you reapply?

“Every two hours, but sooner if you swim or you sweat (even if the product says it's water-resistant). Of note, absolutely nothing is waterproof, and products are no longer able to be labeled as such.”
What's the most commonly forgotten area to apply sunscreen?

The tops of ears, tops of hands, and tops of feet. I also recommend lip balms with SPF as well as hats to protect the scalp (lots of skin cancers in both young and old people hide under the hair).
What should you do if you get a sunburn?

Your risk of melanoma doubles if you have had more than five sunburns! Therefore, avoid them at all costs. However, nobody is perfect, and they happen. Immediately cool the skin with cold damp towels or a cool shower (do not directly apply ice). Use a soothing moisturiser with aloe to calm the skin (nothing thick with petrolatum, or greasy, which can trap the heat, worsening the burn). Immediately take a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory (NSAID), such as ibuprofen, to calm the inflammation. An over-the-counter hydrocortisone one-percent cream may additionally help calm the skin (can be used twice daily). Drink lots of water and fluids to replenish your body's moisture and electrolytes. If you or a child has any fevers, chills, or blisters, or seems confused, immediately seek medical attention.
+ نوشته شده در دوشنبه 20 خرداد 1398ساعت 12:22 توسط lillianbull | | تعداد بازدید : 8

Britney Spears's Casual Style Is the Only Constant Left in This World

Britney Spears is a creature of habit. Her red carpet style has stayed the same for almost a decade, and apparently her off-duty clothes have as well. The singer is currently traveling the world for her Piece of Me tour, and was photographed sightseeing with her sons, Sean and Jayden, on her most recent stop in Berlin while wearing athletic short-shorts, a green-and-white “Lucky Charm” shirt, and a pair of Adidas sneakers. If it weren’t for her sons, now 12 and 11 years old, it’d be hard to pin down just what year we were in. Just compare it to this video of her from Instagram in April or her getting some Starbucks in 2009.

The family, along with a serious-looking bodyguard, visited the Lustgarten park on Berlin’s Museum Island, and were photographed smiling and laughing while taking in the sights. Spears is scheduled to perform at the city’s Mercedes-Benz Arena on Monday evening.

On Saturday, she performed to a record-breaking crowd of 57,000 people at Preston Park for Brighton Pride in the U.K., her first time performing in the country since her Femme Fatale tour in 2011. She posted a photo of herself from the performance afterward on Instagram, writing, “I’ve always loved the UK and this night just made me love it even more.”

Spears has come a long way since 2007. She’s back to performing in arenas and looking as happy and bubbly as she did when she first came on the scene back in 1998. One thing that seems to stay the same, however, is her style. Spears’s graphic T-shirts and messy buns seem to be the only consistent and reliable things left in this world, and frankly, we’ll take it.

+ نوشته شده در دوشنبه 22 مرداد 1397ساعت 7:28 توسط lillianbull | | تعداد بازدید : 32

Star striker Jermain Defoe still on ball at 35 after showing meat red card

Not only that, but the Bournemouth striker scored England's first goal in his return game, 13 years after first joining the squad.

So, what's his secret? Other than a superhuman ability to get the ball in the net, Defoe puts the longevity of his career down to one thing: his recent adoption of a plant-based diet.

Why he wanted to do it

Defoe is refreshingly honest about why he started exploring the options in his diet.

"When you come into the later stages of your career, you always try to find anything you can do to prolong it," he explains, showing his steely dedication to football.

It was documentaries like Netflix's What The Health that convinced Defoe to cut meat out of his diet, showing him the benefits and alternatives that were on offer.

"I wanted to try something different to prolong my career, and that's how I was inspired," he says. In his drive to continue to play football at a top level, Defoe has cut meat out altogether, but he still eats fish.

How he found the transition

No matter how in vogue the vegan diet is, for most people the transition is still a pretty tricky one.

Even though Defoe hasn't gone fully vegan, cutting meat out of his diet was still tough, because of the culture he grew up with.

"At first it wasn't easy," he admits. "It's something completely different to what I've done before, especially coming from a West Indian background.

"When I first started, it was difficult. I used to go to my mum's on a Sunday and she'd make lamb, beef, all this kind of stuff."

Admittedly, Defoe has it easier than most people. He works closely with a nutritionist who helps shape his diet to make sure it's balanced. In fact, it doesn't seem like Defoe does that much cooking at all.

"I don't mind cooking," he says, sounding very unconvinced. "My girlfriend does most of it, but I help her."

Now, Defoe's diet has settled into a pretty consistent rhythm. "I try to stick to vegan meals at home, but after training at the ground, I'll have a bit of fish, like tuna or salmon, to get some energy back into my system," he says.

His mum has also managed to adapt - he was at her house the night before we spoke, and she made him a lovely vegetable curry.

How it changed his performance

For Defoe, changing his diet so significantly has undoubtedly been worth it.

"It wasn't easy, but as I was doing it I noticed the difference," he says. "I didn't get one muscle injury last season, and in your 30s that's quite unusual.

"I thought it must be down to my diet - cutting meat out and really understanding what I'm actually putting into my body."

His muscles aren't the only thing that have benefited from a meat-free lifestyle. "I've always had energy, but sometimes you feel a little bit lethargic and bloated," he says. "Now I feel like I've got more energy. I feel completely different - I'm able to train every day, I don't get any injuries and it's helped with my game. That, for me, is the most important thing."

How his teammates have responded

Veganism isn't exactly seen as a macho lifestyle choice, which seems at odds with the lad-centric nature of football.

However, Defoe says his teammates are really receptive to his diet. "A lot of the younger players look at me and they're like 'Wow, how can he still be playing at that sort of level at 35?' I think they wanted to know what the secret is," Defoe explains. The answer he always gives them? His diet.

"I think they look at me and think they should try it themselves - and they should, because the earlier you try it, the better it will be," Defoe says.

With top sportspeople such as Serena Williams and David Haye adopting veganism, plant-based diets are shedding the image of being wishy-washy and unbalanced. If a 23-times Grand Slam winner can succeed without getting her protein from meat, then there's got to be something in that.

Importance of knowing about food

For Defoe, his journey away from a meat-focused diet has been an eye-opening one.

"When I was younger, I didn't understand much about food, I just ate what was in front of me," he says in disbelief. "Even at the training ground I just ate like everyone else."

It was education that showed Defoe that there are so many alternatives to meat. That's why he did a film with Quorn and Ben Fogle about how reducing your meat intake can be so much healthier and better for the environment.

"It encourages kids to understand what they're putting in their bodies," Defoe says. "It shows you can be healthy and fit without eating meat."

For now, you won't see Defoe reaching for grilled chicken breast to get his #gains. Instead, he'll be opting for tofu - which will probably help power his professional career for a few extra years.

+ نوشته شده در جمعه 21 ارديبهشت 1397ساعت 11:54 توسط lillianbull | | تعداد بازدید : 37

11 high street bags you won't believe aren't designer

The bag game is STRONG on the high street for spring/summer 2018, and if you can’t quite afford to invest in a must-have designer handbag, this is very good news indeed. All the more so because a bag is the one foolproof way to update your look in this trans-seasonal weather.

As is the way, high street stores like Mango, Zara and M&S have taken their cue from the catwalk for their on-trend offerings.

There are plenty of net bucket bags (Mango has a limited edition one that instantly sold out but might be coming back in stock soon), and plastic totes to tick that see-through trend (check out Zara and Forever 21’s take on this).

And while basket bags are still going strong this season, we’re welcoming the arrival of Crayola brights as seen at Givenchy and Balenciaga, by way of Topshop and M&S.

A purse-friendly bag is a great way to dip into tricky trends too, and & Other Stories has some pretty pastel options if you’re not into the head-to-toe ice cream look.

Scroll down to shop bags that are so chic your friends won’t believe they’re not designer.

+ نوشته شده در جمعه 3 فروردين 1397ساعت 6:48 توسط lillianbull | | تعداد بازدید : 68

The Biggest Beauty Movement You Can Find All Over Instagram

Contrary to the over-plucked eyebrow trend of yore, the kind of fringe popping up on our feeds today is fuller than ever. The last few years alone have seen bold-brow outliers like Cara Delevingne, Lucy Hale, and Zendaya prove that the beauty standard for the "cool" eyebrow is no longer one-size-fits-all. In 2018, however, people are taking the look one step further, proudly showing off their unibrows both on Instagram and on the runways — and we don't hate it one bit.

If the body hair movement of our generation has proven anything, it's that you shouldn't feel self-conscious about the natural hair you have — and this extends to your eyebrows. Luckily, there's a crop of unibrow renegades all over social media lighting the way. So if the thought of getting another wax makes you want to curl up in a ball and cry, you might want to consider following their lead and let your (eyebrow) bush grow wild and free.

Need inspiration? We've rounded up our favorite unibrows on Instagram as of late.
+ نوشته شده در چهارشنبه 9 اسفند 1396ساعت 6:14 توسط lillianbull | | تعداد بازدید : 97

How to select prom dress for girls of different height

Perhaps it is the most important thing to consider wile buying a prom dress for the party. Improper selection may cause a short girl to look much shorter and a tall girl to be much taller. So consider dress that flatters your body type and can well accentuate positive features of your body and hides the negative if any.

Dark Green Satin Off-the-Shoulder Ball Gown Floor-Length Dresses

Prom Dress for long & charming girls:

Full figured women can go for A-line attire or an empire gown. This kind of dress covers the body entirely till their feet. The dress suits girls of hourglass figured and it show off their curves beautifully. Moreover athletes' girls can prefer this dress since it make them look elegant and smooth. While their nature of boy is strong and tough, A line prom dresses gives a feminine look. Tall girls with shoulders and hip of uniform width must choose a gown that has something spun around the waistline. Usually tall girls have thin legs which they hesitate to show it off but their hips look figured giving a feminine attribute. This is the reason why they choose models to be tall. Hence long prom dress pattern together with decorated waistline help them to cover their legs and make them look classy. Sheath dresses are the perfect choice for long lean girls.

Prom Dress for short & pretty Girls:

For short girls, if they wish to look tall, they can opt plain dresses with limited decoration. Dress with heavy works probably degrade your appearance and gives you a short look. Picking long gowns is yet another bad choice. It is better to stick to fitted sleek silhouettes. Since it has a lop-sided hemline, it makes you look taller. It is good to avoid belts or straps in contrasting colors. To make you look long, try a solid color silhouette and wear pointed shoes.

+ نوشته شده در شنبه 30 دی 1396ساعت 9:18 توسط lillianbull | | تعداد بازدید : 102

Beauty Secrets You've Never Heard But Need to Know

Drink more water, take your make-up off before bed, use SPF—this is all sound advice, but hardly breaking news for beauty junkies. But what if we told you we'd quizzed the pros for some beauty tips you haven't heard before? Seriously, there's still some out there (and we thought we knew it all). From how to stop your nails from going yellow to avoiding chapped lips in even the wildest winter conditions, cast your eyes upon these eight nuggets of valuable advice, according to experts.


Who knew you could OD on lip balm? When your lips are sore and chapped, it's tempting to keep piling on the balm (especially if you're a fan of matte lipstick ). But the constant coating can stop dry skin from breaking free. This means it builds up, making your lips feel uncomfortable and tight. It also prevents the balm from doing its job and hydrating those lower layers that really do need the moisture. Invest in a lip scrub to gently remove any crustiness, and then go in with the balm. Do it twice a week for a peachy pout.


According to Bastien Gonzalez, the pedicurist every A-lister has on speed dial, base coats stop working after three days. This means that your nails will become vulnerable due to the chemicals in your polish. The results yield weak, at-risk of breakage nails that have a yellowy tinge. Yes, it takes effort but redoing your mani every few days will make your nails appear healthy, pink and strong. We've tried it and can confirm this isn't a fallacy.


Tannng supreme James Harknett let us into a little secret recently. If you're in a rush, use your hair dryer to speed up your tan's developing process. Since you're activating the DHA faster, you're literally baking yourself bronze. You'll still need to rinse it off, but it means there's none of that overnight stinky-sheets nonsense to deal with, plus you'll achieve the same golden glow in under an hour.


We are not advocates of reapplying new foundation over old, but we are realists. Sometimes you just don't have enough time, effort or inclination to start everything from scratch between day and night. So instead of going back in with foundation to freshen up, find something silicone based, ideally a primer. It will knock back any shine and fill in pores that have started to appear more obvious. It shouldn't disrupt the rest of your makeup either, especially if you keep it to the T-zone. Use a tinted version and it's basically like the reboot button on your computer—but for your face.


If your skin is prone to dryness and feels taught and itchy, the water content of your Stratum Corneum is likely to be pretty low. Ingredients like hyaluronic acid and shea butter are big hitters when it comes to skincare. But facialist Julia Hart believes nothing works better than upping your internal fatty acids. Supplements full of omega oils are your best bet, and will act like Lucozade (or coconut water) on a hangover day to replenish and rehydrate flagging faces.


Going in with extra coats of mascara when you first apply it in the morning makes for a full-on flutter, but what about when your lashes are less than fresh and you reapply later on in the day? You know what we're talking about—when your lashes look crunchier than a stale slice of toast. The secret is to pop a balm or some brow gel on your fingertips and massage your eyelashes before you layer up again. Acting as a lube, your eyelashes will suddenly become ripe and ready to receive more product.


We bet this one got your attention. But first off, let's be clear—this doesn't mean applying the sanitiser on your face. Absolutely not. However, if you find yourself touching your face during the day, especially your chin and cheeks when you're in front of the computer, make sure you regularly apply some to your hands. It will null the bacteria between keyboard and face and prevent it spreading and fermenting on your face. So hopefully, less spots.


Massaging your face to boost your circulation hasn't been kept under wraps by the experts, but there's a high probability you're not doing it right. Leading facialist, Su-Man Hsu, explains that it has to be firm so you're that moving the muscles under the skin and not just pushing it around (which can cause damage). She also recommends pressing in the opposite direction of any fine lines or wrinkles. "You would never iron a sheet along the crease to remove it, and the same principle applies to your skin. Apply pressure across frown lines and use a zig zag motion under the eye," says Hsu.


Do not take this as your lead to indulge in a whole bag of crisps in the search for smooth eyes. Instead, visit the fruit and veggie aisle and pick up a King Edward potato. Cut it into thin slices and in half so you get a half moon shape, then place them under your lower lashes. (We're not pulling your leg.) Dr Jules Nabet, Medical Director at Omniya Medi-Clinic, says that the enzymes released from raw potatoes naturally tighten the skin.
+ نوشته شده در جمعه 1 دی 1396ساعت 9:41 توسط lillianbull | | تعداد بازدید : 98

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