I love the changing seasons and the new fashions that they bring.
For my overseas readers -GOOGLE TRANSLATE:


Thursday 17 June 2021


For most of us, the pandemic has brought changes to our lifestyle.  My daily "work uniform" had already been Athleisure but since social distancing, I have rarely "dressed up" and beautiful pieces are hanging unworn in my wardrobe.  I am determined to find ways to wear them more but in the meantime, I am not rushing to buy many new clothes.  I have bought a few little accessories though.  Accessories so often update and enliven an existing wardrobe.

H&M Black Quilted Bag and AirPods Case,
Accessorize Pearl & Gilt Earrings

H&M Small Black Quilted Bag
In the above photographs:-

  • At H&M I fell immediately for the Small Black Quilted Shoulder Bag in imitation leather.  H&M actually intend it to be a Mobile Phone Bag and it is exactly the right size to hold my smartphone, plus it has a card pocket inside and there’s room for a lipstick 💄and comb.

  • I couldn’t resist the Tiny Mock-croc “Handbag” either, which is designed to hold AirPods. I’ll probably use it as a handy coin purse/bag charm.

  • I had recently lost one of a fave pair of pearl and gilt earrings and was looking for a new pair. I was delighted with this pair of Pearl and Pave Stud Earrings from Accessorize. The faux pearl is set in gold-tone metal with tiny diamantes.

As I am very small in both height and build, I naturally look for little pieces that are in proportion to my size. Sometimes I even wander into the Kids section and look at the accessories. Their plain beanies and scarves are good for me as large grownup scarves and hats often drown me.  Of course I look for suitable styles.

H&M Kids Leopard Print Alice Band and Sunglasses
  • I think that Leopard is chic in small touches like little bags and belts etc. and the Leopard Print Alice Band caught my eye.  A different take on usual Leopard, the colours are black and beige pattern on a rust coloured background.  

  • Then I saw the similarly patterned Leopard Pint Cat Eye Sunglasses but the colours here are brown/black/beige. The tinted UV-Protective lenses are UV400 standard.  I wondered if they would be too small for me but they’re fine.  After all, with my latest pair of reading glasses, my optician introduced me to a brand that specialised in frames for petite faces!

I did enjoy my little bit of retail therapy. 🛍️😊

I hope you are all keeping safe and well. 🌈

The items shown above were NOT GIFTED.

Wednesday 28 April 2021


It’s Spring now here in the UK, sunny🌞but still windy and after wintry weather, cold winds and mask wearing😷I felt that I would like a soothing, milky cleanser for my face. I immediately thought of a product that I sampled some time ago.  Back in the good old days of 2019, before the pandemic, I went to one of my favourite events - the annual “Allergy and Free From Show” at the Olympia in London. La Roche-Posay, a brand known for their gentle skincare products, played a prominent part at the show and their stand attracted many visitors. They also sponsored an excellent talk on skincare for sensitive and allergy-prone skin.  At the time, I wrote about it all, here's the link to that post:-


At the show, I was given a little sample bottle** (just enough to try for a few days) of La Roche-Posay Toleriane Dermo-Cleanser and I was very impressed. So recently I decided to go to Boots the Chemist to buy it. There was even a special offer of 25% off and the normal price, £12.50, was reduced to £9.37.😊Boots have been doing a lot of good offers lately.

La Roche-Posay Toleriane Dermo-Cleanser

Although my skin is not allergy-prone or very sensitive, I find that neither harsh nor oily skincare products suit it.  I always aim to keep skincare simple, gentle, clean and bland.  La Roche-Posay Toleriane Dermo-Cleanser is a wipe-off cleansing milk specially designed to gently clean sensitive, intolerant or allergy prone skin.  Fragrance free, the ingredients include glycerine and La Roche-Posay Thermal Water.*

I apply the cleanser gently with my finger tips and then carefully wipe it off with a soft, 100% cotton, Boots Oval Cotton Wool Pad.  It can be rinsed off if preferred. It removes my makeup and leaves my skin clean and feeling soft, hydrated and comfortable. Although it is hydrating, it isn’t oily or greasy.  Perfect!

*The ingredients are:

609129, Aqua/Water, Ethylhexyl Palmitate, Glycerin, Dipropylene Glycol, Carbomer, Sodium Hydroxide, Capryl Glycol/Caprylyl Glycol, Ethylhexylglycerin (Code F.I.L: B3089/6).

It is always wise to check ingredients of skincare products.

**The products mentioned above were NOT GIFTED. The very small, not-for-sale, sample was offered to all visitors to try.

Saturday 20 March 2021


Today is officially the first day of Spring 🌸🌺🌻☺️.  It's not going to be a normal Spring but lately we have learnt to adapt, change our habits and make the most of things as they are.  Going out means 😷 so this season I shall focus on eye makeup and beautiful nail polish.

CHANEL's vibrant and pretty new Spring makeup, LES FLEURS DE CHANEL, is inspired by blooming flowers.  From this collection, I've bought the LES 4 OMBRES eyeshadow palette in GOLDEN MEADOW (368). 

The chic black mirrored compact contains 4 beautiful shades:-

  • a satiny, rosy peach
  • a matte rosebud
  • a golden pink
  • a coppery terracotta
designed to be used in various ways to get different looks.  CHANEL suggest the peach shade on the lids, the golden pink for highlights and the darker terracotta along the lashes, adding a brown eyeliner.  The brown pencil in the photo above is RIMMEL's SOFT KOHL KAJAL EYE LINER PENCIL in SABLE BROWN (011). (Floral greeting card in the background from Marks and Spencer).

In the photo above:
  • CLINIQUE ALL ABOUT EYES RICH, a moisturising eye cream.  It's 100% fragrance free and the ingredients include shea butter and sodium hyaluronate.  I find that it helps to improve the look of my under-eye dark shadows and skin.
  • COLLECTION LASTING PERFECTION CONCEALER, a lightweight liquid concealer that covers and conceals my dark under-eye shadows.  It doesn't settle into lines or look chalky and lasts well.
  • BOOTS DOUBLE ENDED EYESHADOW BRUSH.  100% synthetic hair, a larger brush at one end and a little brush at the other.
Boots Double Ended Eyeshadow Brush

  • RIMMEL BROW THIS WAY EYEBROW SCULPTING KIT in MEDIUM BROWN (002). A compact little palette containing a wax, a powder and a small double-ended brush.  I have quite thick eyebrows and I like a natural look but before the pandemic, I went occasionally to the brow bar for threading. I'm hoping this handy little kit will help me to keep my eyebrows in shape.
Rimmel Brow This Way Eyebrow Sculpting Kit

None of the items mentioned above were gifted.

Next, I shall be looking at different shades of nail polish and trying some skincare products.

Keep safe and well everybody🌈💕

Wednesday 6 January 2021


Back in Autumn, I thought that my skin looked jaded and a bit dull - perhaps the effect of the end of Summer and all that mask wearing😷too.  I felt that it needed a "pick-me-up"to give it a healthy glow.  I had never used a facial masque before but I was very impressed by an IG review of the SUKIN HYDRATING FACIAL MASQUE.  SUKIN is an Australian natural skincare brand but I found it here in the UK at my local Whole Foods Market in their lovely Beauty section.  Usually priced at £9.99, it was on special offer at £7.49, so I snapped it up.

This cream based masque is paraben free and contains:-

  • a blend of Mango Seed Butter, Avocado, Olive Fruit and Jojoba Oils;
  • enzymes from Papaya and Pineapple.
(I would always recommend checking out all the ingredients on the label to make sure it's suitable for your skin).

I followed SUKIN's instructions and carefully applied the masque to my damp face and neck.  I used an inexpensive little brush but it could be applied with the fingers.  The texture was very creamy and there was a very light fruity fragrance.  After 15 minutes, I rinsed it off with warm water and a facecloth.

I was delighted with the result.  My skin felt smooth, supple, hydrated and had a healthy glow.  Those natural oils and butters and fruit acids and vitamins really work.  Since then, I have been including the SUKIN HYDRATING FACIAL MASQUE in my skincare routine once a week.  It was just what I needed. 

[Mirror and mini foundation brush in the photo both from Primark]

Items mentioned in this post were NOT GIFTED.

Recently, I have frequently been sharing favourites and reviews of products on Instagram.  You might like to take a look.  My Instagram address is SandyPetitePanache.

I hope that 2021 is not starting too badly for you, in spite of Covid19 and I wish you all a safe, healthy and Happy New Year.🌈💕

Wednesday 24 June 2020


CHANEL Les 4 Ombres in Warm Memories, Rouge Coco Flash in Flash and Le Vernis in Mirage
Back in late January, anticipating the Spring season ahead, I bought a new eyeshadow palette, CHANEL LES 4 OMBRES in Warm Memories (354) and a new nail polish, CHANEL LE VERNIS in Mirage (739).  I wrote about them in my post, "CHANEL Spring Makeup - Soft Tones of the Desert".  Here's a handy link to that post:-

I hadn't decided then on a new lipstick💄 and was taking time looking at new shades and textures.  Then Covid19 and the lockdown followed.☹️ Initially, Boots the Chemist had barriers round "non-essential" items such as makeup. (Is make-up "non-essential"? I hear the protests!🤗).  When they did open up the makeup section, obviously for health and safety reasons there were no testers on the CHANEL counter but the products weren't even on display, just printed out display guides showing the shades.  In the meantime I had looked at the CHANEL on-line website, with its helpful descriptions of products and displays of colours and decided on CHANEL's ROUGE COCO FLASH in Flash (74).

CHANEL Rouge Coco Flash in Flash

CHANEL had replaced one of my old faves, Rouge Coco Shine, with a new lipstick, ROUGE COCO FLASH. Described by them as "Hydrating Vibrant Shine Lip Colour", it contains waxes from natural origins (mimosa, jojoba and sunflower).  Colourwise, I wanted something in an orange/peach or coral shade and Flash (74) seemed the right one.  I eventually went to Boots to buy it and I'm delighted with it.  As they promised, it is moisturising and hydrating with a glossy oil finish and a high shine.  The shade, Flash, is a very pretty, light orange peach - just what I had in mind!  ROUGE COCO FLASH has a transparent cap, to show the colour of the lipstick inside!

At the same time, I needed a new eyebrow pencil as I had used up my CHANEL STYLO SOURCILS Waterproof Defining Longwear Eyebrow Pencil. 

Double-ended, STYLO SOURCILS WATERPROOF has a retractable tapered tip pencil at one end and spiral brush for grooming at the other. The pencil is designed so that the side of the tip can be used to define the line and then the flat side is for filling in and intensifying the colour. Using little strokes, a natural or more intense effect can be achieved. Then, the spiral brush can be used for blending the colour. There are 6 good shades to choose from, varying from lighter browns to dark brown, auburn and black:-

804 Blond Doré
806 Blond Tendre
808 Brun Clair
810 Brun Profond
802 Auburn
812 Ebène

I had been using it in the Blond Tendre(806) shade (a very light brown) but this time I decided to buy Brun Clair (808) (light brown), which is deeper, with a light chocolatey tone.

CHANEL Stylo Sourcils Waterproof in  Brun Clair
Since my trip to Boots, the "non-essential" shops have been allowed to open but of course with the necessary restrictions in place. I have ventured into a couple of them briefly but, to be honest, I didn't feel relaxed about it and I didn't linger. It wasn't the enjoyable experience that it normally is for me.

It's now very hot and sunny out and I am looking at my clothes and accessories to put together a summer look with a black and white and silver theme - and a straw hat of course!


Saturday 9 May 2020


Hi everyone, I hope you are safe and well.  Here in London we have been in lockdown for seven weeks.  Whilst it might have become a bit monotonous, I have been very glad and grateful to be safe in my own home and breathing!

Yes, as a fashion/beauty blogger, I have really missed those little pleasures like looking at the clothes in the shops, discovering new makeup colours and textures at the beauty counters, going to fashion and beauty events and often working on my blog in my favourite coffee shops but of course, as always, there is still a lot happening online.  I admit that the highlights of my life now seem to be things like eating nice food and watching "Killing Eve"! I find that television series so exciting with an edge of comedy and interesting fashionwise too.  Villanelle, is mad and murderous but cheekily comic - she's so beautiful and all those clothes she wears that go from ultra feminine to gender fluid!  Eve, has a sort of laid-back, casual, often untidy glamour.  Carolyn, Eve's MI6 boss, is impeccable in her smart, casual, classic pieces. I can just imagine her ordering her clothes on-line from Net-a-Porter whilst eating her "peanut butter sandwiches"!

I feel very sorry for the retail fashion business.  They had been through a tough time, what with austerity and the uncertainty of Brexit but as we began 2020, they must have been feeling more hopeful.  Bravely, they started to fill their shops with lovely new Spring pieces and then this happened and their shops were closed.  True, most of them have an online outlet (sadly not Primark) but I can't imagine that most people are buying many clothes at the moment.  

Back in February, before things got bad, I was looking at the new season's clothes.  I was getting very excited about puffed sleeves (yes, another of my nods to Miu Miu) and I began by buying this little black, long-sleeved top in a silky, crepe type knit from H&M's Divided range.  The puffed sleeves are not very exaggerated and it can be worn quite casually now in lockdown style.  I am still thinking about ordering online one of those beautiful summer blouses with big puffed sleeves.

Black puffed sleeve top from H&M
It looks as if some aspects of the lockdown might be eased a little soon but there's not likely to be an end to social distancing in the near future.  I don't visualise me personally doing much dressing up and clothes buying this season.  Somehow I think I will be looking back come Autumn and saying "Whatever happened to Spring 2020 Fashion?

Stay safe.

The puffed sleeved top shown above was NOT GIFTED.

Wednesday 15 April 2020


Hi everyone, I hope you are all well and safe from this horrible virus. Here in London we are of course in lockdown and  many of us are working from home.

Back in February, before this all turned really bad, I had begun to refresh my Athleisure collection with a few new pieces.  I mentioned my new hoodie in my last post:

I also went on to buy two new pairs of leggings.  Being very petite, I usually avoid anything baggy but I did buy these black joggers from Primark.

Black Joggers from Primark

Black Joggers - Details of Waist
They are actually quite a neat shape and fit nicely around the waist and hips. Made in a lightweight 96% Polyester and 4% Elastane jersey material, they are not bulky at all and I'm very pleased with them.

I also bought a new pair of my usual slim style black leggings from the H&M Divided Basics range.  These are made in a 95% Cotton 5% Elastane jersey material and have an elasticated waist.

Black Jersey Leggings from H&M Divided Basics
Athleisure was my everyday work style anyway but now in the lockdown it's become even more relevant.  As you might expect, retailers have been promoting their Athleisure pieces and pyjamas on line! After all, dressing up at the moment would literally be "all dressed up with nowhere to go"!

A key feature of lifestyle at the moment is undoubtedly the constant handwashing.  This of course can be very drying and it goes without saying that a very gentle, moisturising soap is essential.  Whilst I know that some people with allergies need to avoid using perfumed soap, for the rest of us the combination of a lovely texture and a beautiful fragrance can make this necessary ritual a pleasurable and even holistic experience.

For quite some time I had been washing my hands with Marks & Spencer's Floral Collection Lavender soap.  Enriched with moisturisers (including glycerine), it's delicately fragranced with Lavender. It makes a lovely creamy lather and leaves my hands feeling soft and hydrated.  I  feel as if I am using soap and hand lotion at the same time! Now, the way things are, I appreciate it even more and I quickly stocked up with two boxes!  The soap comes as a set of 3 bars in a box.

M&S Floral Collection Lavender Soap

I would add that this soap is not tested on animals and has been approved by Cruelty Free International. Also, it's suitable for vegetarians.

Meanwhile, whilst  we have been in lockdown, Spring has crept in making our permitted daily walk very pleasant!

Keep safe everyone!

None of the items mentioned in this post were Gifted.

Saturday 22 February 2020


For the last year or two, I have enjoyed reading blogs by lovely ladies, Gail  www.isthismutton.com and Anna www.muttonstyle.com and by the lovely ladies that share their posts on their linkups.  These ladies are over 50 and write about fashion and beauty. They explode the myths and assumptions generated by the media (and some retailers too) about how women over 50 dress, how they like to dress and what they should and shouldn't wear.  These ladies wear what they want to wear, whether it's very trendy or more on the classic side.  It's all about personal style. 

For me personally, my only "rule" (whatever the age is, be it 16, 66 or older still) is to
look candidly in the mirror and ask one's self:
  • Does this suit me as I am NOW?
  • Does it suit my face and my body?
  • Does it suit my personality?
  • Does it suit my lifestyle
  • Is it chic?
Being small in both height and build (size 6), I normally wear neat pieces.  Colourwise, I do often like to wear black.  I also like new fashion and update my style to reflect new trends.  In recent years I have been inspired by designer brands like Saint Laurent and The Kooples.  Their collections include a lot of iconic basic black pieces, often with a "rock chic" touch but with a sophisticated look.  For everyday, my "uniform" has become an easy athleisure style.

I never thought too much about age but recently I've noticed certain changes to  my  face, body and hair - Petite Panache has finally come of age!!!  Does this mean that I need to change my style? No, but there are things that need some extra help or are better concealed and I am making some little adjustments. Also, I find that I want to "adorn" myself a little bit more with makeup and jewellery.

In a nod to greenness,  declutter and a tight budget, I have been buying less lately but I've started 2020 - a new decade - with just a little shop for some new everyday essentials:
  • An essential black nylon t-shirt bra from Primark's Secret Possession's range - silky at the front with transparent sides and back.

  • Black Swiss Embroidered High Leg Knickers from M&S Autograph collection.  I like their knickers because they are always comfortable (both the fit and the soft materials).  The silky cotton/polyamide blend and the transparent parts make them a good match with the bra.

  • Hoodies, always a key piece in an athleisure wardrobe, are extra trendy this season. This one, from the H&M Basics/Divided range, is made in a black cotton blend sweatshirt material. I like the cropped style, the hood with the wrapover front, the raglan sleeves and the soft, brushed warm fabric inside.  

Some other basic essentials:

In the photo above:
  • Black shoulder/crossbody bag in a polyester fabric with a sheen from H&M Divided.  It has two handy little zipped compartments at the front.
  • Black mock-croc wallet and essential touchscreen gloves, both from Primark.
  • My favourite perfume (ultra essential!) Yves Saint Laurent Black Opium Eau De Parfum.  A blend of black coffee, white florals and vanilla, it really is addictive!  YSL describe it as a "glamrock fragrance"!
Gail recently published the results of her Is This Mutton Survey that she put to her readers.  One question she asked us was how we felt about having grey hair and  25% said that they were happy to be grey.  I colour my hair with a very gentle semi-permanent product that also acts as a conditioner. You can read about it on my page, "How To Do Chestnut Hair" (see the tab at the top of my blog).  I've certainly no plans to go grey at the moment or in the near future.

In the News! Sharon Osbourne has stopped dying her 100% white hair red and is now platinum blonde! 

None of these items were gifted

Wednesday 29 January 2020

CHANEL Spring Makeup - Soft Tones Of The Desert

It's been cold January and it didn't seem that Spring was near.  Spring must be on the horizon though because last week it was Spring/Summer 2020 Haute Couture Fashion Week in Paris.  That's always my wake-up call that the new season isn't so far away!  

The Spring/Summer makeup is appearing on the beauty counters too.  Readers of my blog must think I'm very predictable as I always begin a new season with new makeup. There are good reasons for this - some of the new season's beautiful  shades are limited editions and can sell out fast. Also, I  do find that buying the new makeup helps me to get into the mood for the season ahead.

CHANEL is always one of my favourite brands.  For Spring 2020, Lucia Pica (CHANEL's Global Creative Makeup & Colour Designer) was inspired by muted tones of the Desert - soft shades of mauve, pink, peach combined with a soft golden glow.  I think these are beautiful colours for Spring and will give a soft, pretty and healthy look.

I bought 2 pieces from the collection - Les 4 Ombres in Warm Memories (354) and Le Vernis in Mirage (739).

Les 4 Ombres is a palette of 4 eyeshadows in a smart, shiny black CHANEL compact with a large mirror.  I love the soft mauvy theme of  the Warm Memories palette and the contrast of matte and iridescent finishes.

 Les 4 Ombres in Warm Memories (354)
Photo above: The shades, clockwise from top left - matte rosy mauve; a lighter, rosy mauve with a slight shimmer; metallic, iridescent orange/pink/gold;  darker muted plum with a slight shine.

CHANEL enclose a helpful little 2-sided card with the palette suggesting 2 looks:-

Look 1: using 2 shades - light and medium
Look 2 - Using all 4 shade

I mostly use 2 shades on my eyes - a light one above with a medium or dark one on the eyelid.  As I need definition, I usually use an eyeliner or eye pencil to outline the eye.  With this palette, instead of an eyeliner, I might use the dark plum shadow close to the lashes to rim the eyes as suggested in Look 2.  I'm looking forward to wearing these eyeshadows in different ways.

Le Vernis in Mirage (739) is a very beautiful muted mauve nail polish and perfect for this look.

CHANEL Le Vernis in Mirage (739)

As usual with CHANEL nail polish, it's easy to apply smoothly.

I'm really delighted with both of these products. I do find new season's makeup exciting!😊

On My Wish List:

To go with this theme, Éclat Du Désert is an illuminating powder.  It combines a golden shimmer with a satiny, rosy beige base and because of the pink tones, CHANEL suggest using it both as a blusher and a highlighter (on cheeks, bridge of the nose and the Cupid's Bow.)

None of the items mentioned above were Gifted.

Tuesday 17 December 2019


It's cold and dark - the darkest time of the year now, leading up to the shortest day on 21st December!  Yet it isn't gloomy because, as always, the season brings a festive warmth and light and glitter with decorations, parties, family gatherings, gifts........

That's going to be the theme for my holiday season dressing. As my occasions this year are informal, I'm going to focus on wearing warm, easy pieces, but I will add the contrast of a bit of sparkle and glamour.

So  here's my Mood Board:-

On the Mood Board:-
Burgundy Jumper (H&M) - NEW this season
Pearl Drop Earrings (Accessorize) - NEW this season
Soft Black Jumper (H&M)
Diamante and Pearl Drop Earrings (vintage Monet)
"Slinky" Diamante Earrings (Accessorize)
Pearl Beads
H&M Nail Polish in Bordeaux - NEW
Pearl Hairband with Diamante Bow (Accessorize)

I had promised myself that I would buy a new jumper in a colour that wasn't black!  I kept my promise! This one is from H&M (Divided) in Burgundy.  It's in a soft bouclé knit with ribbed neckline, cuffs and hem.
Burgundy Jumper from H&M
Bouclé Knit and Rib detail

Their nail polish in Bordeaux was just right too.

I like the burgundy jumper worn with my black skinny jeans.  You can read about them if you click on the link below:


I also like the trend this season to wear a soft jumper over a satin slip dress.  I have a black satin slip dress in my wardrobe (bought a few years ago) and a soft, quite wide shaped black jumper, bought earlier this year.  I will complete this look with sheer or semi-sheer black tights, possibly dotty ones (but definitely not opaque!) and black suede boots.

I'll add the glamour and sparkle with a pearl and diamanté hairband, pearl drop earrings or diamanté earrings.

You may be wondering what the little round box of pearl beads on the Mood Board is all about!  I found them in my drawer and I am going to sew a few on my little black beanie.  I'd been looking at the pearl-trimmed hats and scarves in the shops this season.  That's a little task for me to do!.

That's it now until January.  I wish everyone a Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays, Happy Chanukah, Seasons Greetings (whatever you are celebrating) and of course a Happy New Year.

None of the items mentioned above were gifted.