I care about the Earth, so I'd like to find some vegan shoes like the ones Natalie Portman put her name to a few years ago. Any idea where can I buy them?

Treading Lightly, Lantau

The Dictator rules: Oh, you people. FYI, the business Ms Portman collaborated with on those shoes, Te Casan, folded long ago. Now, she's in Dior. You're a vegan, which means you can't eat, wear or consume in any way anything that came from an animal. Sound the alarm! Unknowingly, you could be wearing something coated in beeswax or made with wool, downgrading you to a vegetarian. By the way, Stella McCartney shares your noble concerns. Her label calls itself the world's first vegetarian luxury brand. As such, her line is free from fur, skins, feathers and leather. This season, her collection includes chunky rubber platforms on haute sandals, trainers and derbies (HK$4,110 to HK$8,020). Melissa, which is known for its plastic shoes (HK$700 to HK$3,500), is indirectly vegan, but also makes an effort to recycle and develop technologies to be environmentally responsible. Let's be honest. Just because you're vegan doesn't mean you're saving the environment. While you're at it, you might as well shun sweatshops, un-fair trade and pollutants, too. Read the fine print and try shopping through retailers such as beadandreel.com or ecouterre.com, where you'll encounter ethically minded brands, such as Beyond Skin, which offers a variety of flats, boots, heels and wedges (HK$830 to HK$1,660).


I'm a lip gloss kind of person, but I'd like a bit of colour that stays on for a long time without looking like a lipstick. I vaguely remember that there was once a potion that stained lips a nice colour.

Pout Potion, The Peak

The Dictator: Yes, you are vague. Sorry. What was the question? If you're looking for lip tints or stains, then you've come to the right place. Yves Saint Laurent's Rouge Pur Couture Glossy Stain (HK$295), which comes in more than 40 shades, offers both the long-lasting colour of a stain and the shine of a gloss in one chic package. The Sephora Collection has an affordable iteration, Cream Lip Stain, offering eight highly pigmented hues in a matt, lightweight finish with nourishing vitamin E and avocado oils (HK$135 each; www.sephora.hk). Also high on the list is Lipstick Queen's Saint & Sinner Lip Tint, which comes in four pink to red tones imbued with hydrating lipids (HK$186). By the way, you were probably thinking of the rose-hued BeneTint lip and cheek stain by Benefit Cosmetics (HK$320; Lab Concept), which evolved from the first product created by the brand's founders, twins Jean and Jane Ford, for an exotic dancer in San Francisco in the 1970s. But that's another story. These days, Benefit offers three more tints for different skin tones: pink Posietint, coral Chachatint and pink-mauve Lollitint (HK$320 each). Finally, try the amusingly named Stainiac, an aloe-infused, gel-based lip and cheek stain by The Balm (HK$146; www.sephora.hk).

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