On style, she rules
I've been scouring the city for some classic brown brogues but haven't had any luck. Do you know where I can find some that aren't too masculine?
In-Need-of-Man-Shoes, Kowloon Tong
The Dictator rules: Let me get this straight. You want men's- style shoes. You have called yourself 'In-Need-of-Man-Shoes' and yet you expect to find some that aren't masculine? No wonder you didn't find anything. Church's, the classic men's footwear maker, has a women's line that includes beautiful brogues in fine leather (HK$3,350 to HK$3,700; 2/F, Elements, 1 Austin Road West, Kowloon, tel: 2196 8452). Any style of shoe will look more feminine in a narrow fit, including Repetto's Zizi lace-up dance shoes, which come in a lightweight elasticated fabric (HK$2,500; Lane Crawford, Pacific Place, Admiralty, tel: 2118 3668). The Melissa brand, which relaunched the 1980's jelly shoe, has done a lace-up version in its own unique way, with styles ranging from purple velour to crystal-encrusted rubber (HK$750 to HK$2,500; Lane Crawford). For the softest, most supple take on the traditional shoe, try the brand's paper-thin leather and rubber soled lace-ups, which are available in a variety of colours (HK$890; Seibu, Pacific Place, tel: 2971 3838). We tend to shy away from highs heel on loafers and brogues but you might like how Pedro Garcia (HK$3,800; Lane Crawford), Bally (HK$4,590; 2/F, Ocean Centre, Harbour City, Tsim Sha Tsui, tel: 2736 8068) and others have lifted the lace-up.
I heard that designers do stuff for H&M but I didn't know Jil Sander did winter coats and stuff for Uniqlo? When is that collection out?
Jil Ted, Deep Water Bay
The Dictator: Stop trying to sound 'with it'. You're not. If you were, you'd know that autumn/winter collections come out in, ahem, autumn. Get it? Apparently, most people know this because the +J autumn collection by Jil Sander for Uniqlo hit stores in October. But don't worry if you missed it, because she's done a spring collection that'll be in stores by now, so hurry over to Uniqlo (2/F, Lee Theatre Plaza, 99 Percival Street, Causeway Bay, tel: 2577 5811; and 3/F, Gateway Arcade, Harbour City, tel: 2175 0810). Based on the previous collection, you'll find simple, luxurious, basic and timeless design at great prices, including HK$399 for jeans and other trousers and only HK$299 for shirts. The designer has focused on a palette of ivory, white and pastels, in line with most designers' spring colours, and more volume.
It's not my waistline or bank account that has suffered from the holidays, it's my hair. Too many pre-party blow-dries have left it looking dull and dry but I can't go without that hot-air styling. What to do?
Lost in the Desert, Central
The Dictator: No way! Poor you. You've been wined, dined and pampered and all you've 'suffered' is dry hair. Stop your whining and splurge on more luxury products. You could try Frederic Fekkai's Coiff Defense Pre-Style Thermal/UV Protectant, a protein-rich leave-in conditioner that is heat-activated to defend against damage from 'thermal' styling while smoothing and moisturising the hair (HK$235; Joyce Beauty, 16 Queen's Road Central, tel: 2869 5816). Also browse through the rest of the Coiff range, as well as the Brilliant Glossing Sheer Shine Mist (HK$250; Joyce). In the same price range, you might also like Philip B's Shin Shine aromatic shine enhancing blow-drying mist made with green-tomato essence (HK$230; Joyce) and Aveda's vitamin E-enriched Brilliant Spray-on Shine (HK$230; basement, The Landmark, Central, tel: 2868 3353). Phyto also offers products for abused follicles, including Phytolisse smoothing serum (HK$220; City'super, basement, Times Square, Causeway Bay, tel: 2506 2888) and Phytodefrisant balm (HK$170). City'super's lifestyle section has some intriguing products, including Nervous Cure Vital Hair Oil (HK$98), O Way ReLife rebuilding spray (HK$185) and Mop Glisten spray gloss (HK$88).