Thursday, August 27, 2009

Sole Desire

What is it about heels and me?! I love a pair of sexy, outrageously high heels. It’s like a “Pick me up”…ahem. A pair of nice heels picks me up from earth and takes me to heaven! The Vixen is not known to be a tall person. Tall in character and personality, though, or so I have been told! I do also have tiny feet so it’s not always easy to find a pair I like in my size.

I love the fact that one has so many choices today from really thin stilettos or kitten heels or wedges or block heels etc. Some times I wake in the morning knowing what pair of heels I will wear, from there the Vixen works an outfit around. A drab black business suit paired with turquoise blue killer heels. Hmm…the options are endless and choices boundless.

I remember wading through water in Bombay with my beige heels tucked away safely in my purse. I walked into a meeting like that and wore the heels only in the safely of the office I had the meeting at. I rather am walking barefoot in the rain then to ruin a pretty pair of shoes! That would be plain insane.

Apart from that fact that heels give a woman a gait in her walk. For women like me, who are challenged in the height department, it’s also a tool to help you look into your man’s eyes. I would be constantly suffering from a neck ache when I started dating. Every time my man hugged me, I had to crane my neck back in order to breathe. Otherwise I would get suffocated in between his chest and arms. A nice pair of heels took care of this issue once and for all. Also it gives me a chance to look into his eyes and really look in them eyes!

My favourite pair of heels is from London. They are beautiful leopard print shoes from Oxford Street. A little birdie tells me that they might just be featured in the next issue of Harpers Bazaar, India. Sigh…finally they will get the adulation they so deserve from the world out there.

Shoes are just the soul food that a woman needs. You can never have enough. The search for one more perfect pair goes on and on…Buy shoes of all colours. Don’t just stick to the boring brown and black colours. Get some funky colours like yellow, blue, green and RED! OMG…Red high heels are my best friend ( pls don’t tell D that)!

I saw a beautiful red pair at Aldo. Vixen is going shopping today!

You want to fall in love with a shoe, go ahead. A shoe can't love you back, but, on the other hand, a shoe can't hurt you too deeply either. Allen Sherman

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Vanity Insanity

Them zits. I hate them. To give a brief back ground, I have always had super clear skin. No zits, no marks, just clear skin. The only thing that I have is a massive birth mark on the right hand side of my face. It goes over my right ear, spreads a bit on my right cheek and then all over my neck. Very few people who know me have even noticed it. But yes, let it get Hot, Sweaty or if I am pissed off...the birth mark goes stark raving mad and gets a life of its own. I can feel it burn up and turn bright Red. Though its has been bang on my face I have never been conscious of it. Maybe that's why people don't notice it much, as I don't notice it much my self.

So life was cruising along just fine with me and my birthmark, then suddenly one day 2 years back I saw a bunch of zits/pimples sprout up right on my cheek bones. So every time I laughed or smiled, they would hurt. Not only were they nasty hurtful, they also were full of gunk that you and I don't need to talk about. I ignored them for a few weeks. Thinking I am going through a rough personal time so maybe its just stress. Then a few months when the pimples had pretty much taken over my face, I had no choice but to contact a dermatologist.

One fine evening I found my self sitting in a seedy basement of a well known skin specialist. While I was waiting at his reception I was asked by his assistant if I would be interested in either Botox or Restylene. So I got a bit nervous. Here I am talking about something as basic as pimples and there she is talking about Botox!! It annoyed me a bit, is this a ploy to totally destroy any self esteem I might have left?!! So while the Dr is busy attending some one else, the assistant is pushing me to have more luscious lips with Restylene. Or I could remove the "Age" lines on my face with Botox. Lines...I have lines on my face?!! I hadn't even noticed!!! Ok agreed I might not have the worlds most perfect full lips or flawless "ageless" skin but getting some thing injected in them was just up my ally. Then she pounced on my birth mark. Did I know that I could get it lasered off??! Why in God's name would I want that, I asked her?? Its been my identity for my entire adult life. I love my birth mark!!

I was so psyched by the time I met the Dr that I just couldn't wait to get out of there. I went home and inspected my face for at least an hour. Are these lines so ugly?? lips are thin but they seemed to have served me fine. No one had ever commented on their thinness up till now. Or did I have very polite friends who over the years omitted to mention my thin lips?!! Awwww.....where did these lines come from?!! Why did I not notice them before?!! It felt like just yesterday when I had line less and zit free face. Why is GOD doing this to me??! Does he hate me in particular that I am rolling down the lane of total "Uglydom" after years of "Divadom"

So the next few days were spent in total concern of me looking old and needing things to save it from total destruction. I had just stepped into my 30's and it seemed that life was over. I might as well retire to the hills and live with all the old women with hundreds of age line on their faces. Who would notice them there??!!

Miraculously my pimples were forgotten. I had bigger problems now of Age lines, thin lips and my birthmark.It such a sucky situation. No one wants to age willingly, but we do. That's just the way nature planned it so. I have got to learn to wear my Age lines with pride. I love my birth mark. Its been my identity for always. What am I getting stressed about? Hair will grey, skin will wrinkle and birthmark will remain on my face. I realised how Vanity is total Insanity. People can feed you junk and you can actually get sucked into the madness of Vanity.

Luckily good sense prevailed and I went back to stressing about my pimples ONLY. 2 years later I still get pimples, I have massive acne marks on my face. I moan about them now and then and sulk about them. Luckily I made peace with my Age lines and thin lips. I am back in love with my birthmark. Its special. No one else has it but me!! : )

Why is the Society so concerned with looking a certain way only?!! Do we put undue pressure on insecure people and get them to do things that they might not need at all??  

Every one ages, then why do people feel alone in the journey of aging?! Why is aging such a bad word?!

A thought for us humans who start aging from the moment we are born!!

Monday, August 24, 2009

Hair There

I woke up today morning in total despair. My life is not the same anymore. How will I survive my 40's if I shed ALL my hair in my 30's?! Oh Lord, why me...why now??!! The last thing I need right now is the stress of hair loss by bunches. The stress of losing so much of hair is making me lose more hair, I think!

For many years I would be one of those girls who would grow my hair bra strap length and one fine day just chop it all up. Once the hair would be chopped short then the whole regime of oiling and putting henna or eggs (yuck!) in my hair would begin. I would then toil away for a few years just trying to get it back to the bra strap length. Bra strap length…well, once my hair reached the strap of my bra on my back, I would KNOW that its time to get a nice short and funky haircut. That’s always been the measurement.

My desire though was to have enough will power to grow it waist length…it never did grow that long. I jsut didn't have the patience. I went through millions of different haircut phases…every time it was a new short look, a new cut.

Then in 1997 hair colour got introduced in a big way. I had to have it in my hair. For months I dreamt of golden streaks. Saved all the money in the world as I heard that streaks were very expensive. On the D-day, I arrived very nervous at the swankiest salon in Pune. It was just nerve wracking to sit at the fancy salon. All I could think of was to run outta there. Just as I was about to lose my nerve, walked in the head colourist. He sat me down and started quizzing me about my clothes, favourite colour, make up likes etc. For an hour my hair was put up in foils and very strange smell was emitting outta my head. All this while I am nervously thinking, what the hell have I got my self into.

Needless to say I walked out of the salon feeling like a million bucks. A decade later I am still to meet a hair colourist who has spent more than 2 minutes discussing the colour. This guy knew what he was doing and he did it awesomely well.

Since then I have every possible shade of colour in my hair. From Red hair to Super light blonde. Been there and experimented with that! The blonde look took the mikey out of my hair. It was so battered with the colour and bleach for nearly 2 years, that finally I had to cut it and colour it dark black. That got me into my Goth phase. In this phase I looked Goth and scary as hell. Lucky me black nail paint was really in too so that kind of rounded off the look.

Once day good sense prevailed and I stopped colouring my hair at all. It’s been 3 years since I have coloured my hair. Yes, there are days when I just want to colour it in a wild colour…but just can’t seem to muster up the courage to do so.

The hair has grown waist length; as for a year in 2005 I just didn’t have the time due to the launch of our flight out of Mumbai. I was working like a dog and clearly grooming was out of the window. I could barely get in the mandatory threading (painful as hell) and waxing (God, why do we women have body hair?) I was this street mutt who had no time to think of funky haircuts.

We girls spend so much of time and energy on our hair. Not to mention the money in various hair products, shampoos, hair accessories, hair oil. Our pre occupation with hair is one of the great joys of being a woman. Though looking at Ryan Seacrest, men are not far behind!

Over the years our hair will change colour, thickness, shape and size…we ladies will still wear it with pride. See the attached pic, one of my favourites. Thanks to hair colour and innovation in hair care, our hair doesn’t have to age as yet...

Life is an endless struggle full of frustrations and challenges, but eventually you find a hair stylist you like. ~Author Unknown

Friday, August 21, 2009


Consistency is the last refuge of the unimaginative- Oscar Wilde

I can wake up in the morning feeling like a street ally cat dragged me in, open my wardrobe, put a look together...and boy, am I ready to conquer the world!!!

To me its never been about fashion or what look is in. Its always been about how comfortable I am with the clothes and accessories. I know I can't do backless blouses, so I don't. No point wrapping my self in the pallu of my sari coz I am too conscious of the blouse I am wearing.

Judge me as you want, call me a bad human being, bossy boss, terrible cook so on and so forth...BUT don't ever tell me I can't put a look together!
I think I am a gleeful customer on whom the fashion houses live on. I love pushing the envelope, dressing up or for that matter, dressing down. Its all about that careless look that has been shamelessly put together.

Being a woman in The Corporate world can be very confusing for many. Should they be baring their cleavages to get their male colleagues to lust after them? That cleavage show can get that job, easy promotion, lazy deadlines and many a drinks in the evening. Then there are women who are thinking should they dress up like men and blend in. These women dress like men, talk like men and of course abuse like men. If they can abuse in hindi, even better!

Both of these extremes are LOSERS. The cleavage bearers want respect after a few years of putting it all out there and have no chance of getting it. Honey, if he ain't repecting his wife by hanging out with you, you think there a wee bit chance of him respecting you?!

The women who confuse them selves to be men are ball busters. They run the risk of being rejected by both men and women as they clearly don't fit in anywhere. Men are too unnerved by them and women can't identify with them.

I don't dress provocatively at work coz if I wanted to be a slut I would have filled in for "that" position and not done an MBA. Nor will I talk like a man, dress like a man and pretend to scratch my non existent balls! I am WOMAN, thank you very much and absolutely enjoy being one.

Wear pink, yellow or red on a day when you are down. It will immediately brighten your mood. The colours will reflect on your face and brighten it. All the tiredness will visibly disappear. On a day you are feeling bright and chirpy, try wearing blue, black and white coz your body language and mood will uplift the colours you are wearing. Grey and brown should be worn with bright coloured accessories, bight shoes, belts, bags or scarfs will do. A brown outfit with a yellow bag is my favourite.

Ladies, last but not the least, remember stop dressing for the men, especially your man. If you do, then the power is still in their hands to make you feel good, their approval will really matter. He is in a bad mood and tells you your dress is revealing, its only gonna screw your mood. Instead have the confidence to wear that you want. KNOW its not about how he thinks you are looking, its about how you think of your self. If you think you are looking bad, then you probably are! Don't ask people as they will only lie to get out an uncomfortable position.

On that happy note, I end. The VIXEN will be back with many such notes ; )

Don't give a woman advice; one should never give a woman anything she can't wear in the evening


Today we made this impromptu trip to SNM( Sarojini Nagar Market). Just one of those mad days at work where we decided to bunk work for Momo's at Chanakya Puri Market and a quickie shopping trip thrown in at SNM. I am so glad that some of us are still so spontaneous. Although the thought of losing ones job right in the mid of recession is daunting to say the least but then would we have really LIVED!??

I truly do surround my self with madness and trust me walking down SNM in my 4 inch Aldo shoes is nothing short of that. This only comes with madness of breaking free from the restrictions of work and expectations of people. Its so much fun to make a clandestine trip to SNM haggling over T-shirts, shoes and other goodies. Begging the vendor to reduce the price to a bare nothing while wearing an outfit that can buy half the store! Yep, I left this awesome shirt behind just coz the vendor was not willing to sell it at a crazy cheap price. I shall regret this till my next fabulous buy.

I also like the peeps in my team. They are as mad and wonderfully bizarre as I am. Rather I think I get inspired by their madness. One chose a bright blue patent PRADA shoe. Boy, was there a pandemonium at the shoe stall. V wanted the shoes and had NO MONEY!! So, he very politely recommended hiding the shoes till he got the money and his half eaten ice cream was a bribe to the shopkeeper for doing so. While the other one went running to buy these uber cool worn in shorts. I have to admit the shopping madness had bitten all of us.

All this while we were panicking a bit as we had only driven about 40 km( one way) and still needed to get back to work, looking fresh as a daisy on a nice spring mornin. I am so glad we just ran away from work and had this day in our life. Years later we might just meet up over coffee and remember the madness of "that" day at SNM!!

Momos as Chanakya is like eating a piece of heaven. I only dine at Chimney's for past 18 yrs. Apart from them making great Momos there is a also a lovely story behind it. I still remember this incident very fondly of us gals from Miranda House being there for a Momo and fruit beer binge session. Every rupee was precious as ends were hard to meet in Hostel. I couldn't finish my last Momo and asked Mamaji, the manager of Chimney to pack it for me. In the evening after dinner I greedily opened the packed expecting to eat my ONE Momo but I was amazed to find 4 pieces there instead. Mamaji had quietly slipped in the extras. Needless to say he felt sad for this pathetic kid asking to pack ONE momo. I guess that just sealed our relationship for life. How can I ever eat any where else now?!

Today with Gods grace one can go to a Sarojini and Chanakya to shop and eat to ones desire. In spite of that the thrill of haggling for that every rupee is immense. I might not be wearing worn down sandals and second hand jeans bough from Laal Quila( the sandals and jeans are in my memory box in the basement), I still enjoy the madness of SNM. These Aldo shoes are going to keep on walking down the crowded lanes.
Do I enjoy SNM and Chanakya as they were a big part of my teen years?!

Is the thought of simply breaking away from our past so daunting that it keeps us grounded and rooted to old habits?! Or is that I am just the same ol mad shopaholic who just needs an excuse to break away every now and then.


The vixen is back and boy has it been a start of 2009. I had my fix of hippie dressing in Goa. I love the way all the international tourists dress. It looks like they juss couldn't care a damn yet when u sit and notice them you realise they are actually conforming to a fashion, their hippie fashion. I see they are under as much pressure to look chilled out as you and I are under to look smart.

I love London high street fashion. Its like nearly every one is dressed differently but some how they all look like they are dressed in that seasons trends. Its like the women and men have individual style but still seem to have taken that one style which is that seasons and made it their own. Its absolutely inspiring to sit on Oxford street and see the ENTIRE world cross you lookin so HIP and COOL. The vixen is really impressed.

Then I cut to Delhi and the mall crawl here in Ambi mall gets me back to earth with such horrid dressing by the shoppers. Some of them really make you stop and stare and think...what the hell were you thinking! What is it about delhites that makes them so uncool??Why do women wear super tight jeans with the pockets juss under their hips, aren't they supposed to be a little above?! I also often wonder whats the fascination of the Delhi women and their paunch showing under a super tight Lycra top?!!

Today fashion is so easily accessible to the youth. They can get on the net and a 100 fashion magazines that are available. Many many years back I used to go to Shankar market to buy second hand "phoren" magazines to check out the world outside India. I can never thank those magazinewalla enough today.

OK ladies tips for the winters. Get your self one nice long coat( could be trench if you think you are cool enough to carry it: ) !), a pair of nice boots, well fitting jeans and a number of inexpensive yet colourful mufflers. I am a big one for mufflers. Keep it basic and simple and you are set for the winters.

Last but not the least, please feel free to shoot the next lady you see wearing socks and sandals under western wear!! The Vixen thinks we have been given one life to live and we should live it fashionably. Please don't read fashion as expensive, I am big one for Janpath and Sarojini. You can get some really good high street fashion stuff there.

Only great minds can afford a simple style.


I was reading the latest Vogue(India). While going through the glossy I came across these lovely interviews of Jennifer Aniston and Meg Ryan. Their situation in marriages were so different yet both of them seemed so alike as people. One was cheated on by her husband (Jen) and the other cheated on hers (Meg). Both the ladies are Americas (me thinks, the world's) idea of the girl next door. Cute as a button! I truly think they have inspired the generations around them with their trade mark haircuts. Meg made the shag a super must have and Jen introduced her trade mark haircut in Friends. I have had the pleasure of having both the haircuts. The shag inspired by Meg in When Harry met Sally was my do in 1st year college and the Jen inspired look was my introduction to the Corporate world.

Apart from the haircuts, both the ladies have touched our lives with hope of good girls do have fun as well. I still remember taking my hosteler friends for When harry met Sally on my 18th birthday.It was a movie about finding THE ONE. But I think more than the romance of the movie was the down to earth character of Meg that we all fell in love with. Friends, well lets just say that the show was legendary and there aren't many amongst us who didn't watch show and fell in love with all the 6 characters.

Vogue gently reminded me how these women actually have real lives. They have felt real emotions and gone through huge traumas in their personal lives. I love the way Jen has handled her life. She has been stung by the usual "handsome husband cheating on wife for the pretty young thing and lived happily ever after" and Meg I guess made the blunder of fallin in love with the wrong guy.

I totally enjoyed reading the interview, bless you Vogue. I also realised why both these women were America's sweetheart. They are just so lovable that you hate their husbands for leaving them, even Meg, who cheated on hers (Albeit she had good reasons to). The worlds sympathised with these women. Every one was on team Jennifer side. Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie couldn't do a thing about it, in spite of having the worlds most beautiful chromosomes between the both!

I think I truly want to age like Jen. She looks gorgeous while turning 40 this month. Her heartbreak of a cheating husband seemed to have left her a bit sad but not cynical. I love that. I dislike cynics with a passion. They just don't inspire me. Jen is making great movies, dating younger men, looking AWESOME. Way to go girl!!

Honestly, Meg could have avoided the Botox. She didn't need it. Although she seems to have given into the pressure that all women feel starting 30, with or without celebrity, she still has passion for life. After her divorce she channelled her energies to her adopted daughter and all the charity work she does around the globe. I think that's the best way forward. Who needs a man who is so wrong for you.

Some where in Meg's interview she said and I paraphrase, " In my 10 years of marriage I tired to do right by every one but at any given time some one was unhappy". It made me think how true this holds in our lives. We will always try to please and appease every one around us but it seems that some one or the other is always unfulfilled.

Relationships are based on expectations and we can never fulfill those expectations at all given times. The social norms that bind us as a society, are the very thing that pulls us apart in the end??

Shoe of Salvation

Today while waiting for the boys to get me tea in the afternoon, I noticed the hum drum of Global Business Park. People running here there, looking important, feeling important, being important. Every one seemed to know where they were going but had NO CLUE they shoes they were going in. I mean, I could have wept after seeing an important lady in perfectly nice pant suit, ruined with white chappals underneath. What is up with these seemingly important people?!! This is SO wrong.

There are a gazillion choices out there. Use them! You can buy shoes of every size, colour, shape and price. Its so easy. There are hundreds of options. Janpath and Sarojini for Juttis, Kohlapuri, Colourful Chappals. Malls for branded shoes. Roadside for Bangkok and Shanghai shoes. Come on people...use your options!!

For me a shoes makes or breaks the outfit. Wear a white or black outfit and bring in colour with bright yellow, green or red shoes. Winters is all about the boots. There a million boots out there lady and you go wearing white chappals!! The Vixen is very annoyed...No actually, the Vixen is distraught.

The first few things I notice on a goodlookin man is his chest, butt and shoes!! A man with good taste in shoes is definitely a turn on. He knows that the is dotting all the "i" of his outfit and leaving no "t" uncrossed. My man wears nice shoes (actually I secretly thinks he needs shoe rehab!) and thus kept me interested in his appearance all these years. Its all about the well turned out men in well designed shoes. I have never been known to date men who wore chappals.

My favourite shoe shopping destination is Janpath in Delhi and Oxford street in London. Both these places leave you lusting for more. I have been a Janpath fan since the early 90's. No Indian summer has been complete without a few pairs from this great shopping destination. Well, Oxford street makes me weep with JOY. I hope the citizens of London KNOW how lucky they are to live in the shoe heaven of the world.

In my recent trip to Oxford out of many shoes that I bought I would like to mention the lovely purple stilettos. They are so gorgeous that I when I wear them I will need an escort who will whip off his jacket at any sign of dirt. These shoes are actually NOT meant for walkin...only lusting.

The other kinds shoe I totally love love love are Converse. You can wear them summer, winter, autumn...anytime. Jeans or trousers. Casual or formal. They are just perfect. One has to have a good pair of Converse and the shoe closet fairy will be appeased.

Oprah Winfrey once said "I still have my feet on the ground. I just wear better shoes! My sentiments exactly!

Parker Gal

If there is one person out there who I think I can identify with when it comes to clothes, it’s Sarah Jessica Parker. She is just way to Cool. I like Carrie the character she played in “Sex and the City”. Carrie was fun, confused, brilliant, lived for the moment and yes she dressed mad. There are not many women out there who could carry off those crazy outfits worn by SJP.

I too have always dressed mad and different. I have always used fashion to express what I feel at that point. If I get up grey and sad, I almost always wear colours. It’s just something that I know will be a great pick me up. Lets just say colours are my “happy” pills.

Then on the days you know the world is yours to conquer. I will wear dull colours because that day I know my personality will over shadow the clothes. That’s just how it goes. I think mad dressing clearly shows the personality of the person wearing it. Though I will like to put it on record, I am pretty sane!

It’s not just that the character Carrie wore mad mad outfits that look amazing on her. I love what SJP wears on the red carpet. I loved her headpiece at one of the premiers of SATC movie premiers. What coolness.

I will never be one of those wearing the same Hip and Cool clothes that all the women out there seem to be wearing. How does your personality even shine through…or better still do you even have a mind of your own if you follow fashion blindly?! Sometimes you can’t do much. Like what do you with you LBD (Little Black Dress). Nothing. So then you go crazy with the accessories.

I am so glad that Sarah Jessica Parker happened to us ladies. SATC was a show about women who lived their life to the fullest in their 30’s. They clearly had a mind of their own and that mind certainly helped them dress Fabulously!! SJP you are a kick ass lady and I Love ya!

Do we get defined by the clothes we wear or do we define what we wear?!!


Whats a girl without make, right?! Well, I grew up with great fascination for all things colourful and bright. During my high school days I used to wear bright blue mascara, Lakme Kajal...that's it. I wasn't allowed to wear make at all. My family would go nuts if I did, nor did I have the inclination back then. During college I graduated to wearing eyeliners and eye shadows. Still no lipsticks. Don't know why but its only when I was doing my MBA that I started wearing lipsticks. Those were the days of buying really nice Red, Burgundy, Brown etc Apple lip liner pencils. I graduated to pencils but stayed away from hard core make up like foundation, blush etc.

I think it also had a lot to do with money. Its only when I started earning that I bought a foundation, that too I hardly ever used. In 1999 I moved to Washington DC and that's where my life changed for ever! I still remember walking around malls for hours and hours just amazed with the number of make up brands that existed! Here I grew up only with Lakme' and Tips and Toes. What fun it was to explore hundreds of make up and skin care products.

Its from there my love for make up started and lets say that love now borders on insanity. I think I spend a lot of my hard earned money on makeup which will eventually ruin my skin. But I don't care, my dear. That lovely Burgundy eyeliner, nude lipstick, peach blusher, navy blue mascara...I can go on and on!!

Currently I am suffering from a terrible bout of acne and it is this wonderful invention of make up that has stopped me from having a total nervous breakdown. I just slap on some wonderful foundation and concealer from MAC and all is fine in paradise!!

My favourite makeup is created by MAC. Its smooth, doesn't have any odour or fragrance in it. The products are state of the art, edgy and beautiful! I love the fact that they give back to society with the Viva Glam lipstick sale. It speaks volumes to me as a consumer that MAC takes up causes like AIDS that require immense funding. Or maybe its just an excuse for me to buy my next Viva Glam : )

My favourite look is dark eyes, really really dark eyes and nude lipstick (refer to the pic above). Though I think in this festive season one should reverse it with light eyes and nice bright Red lipstick. I think this Christmas Santa will be bringing me some Make up from MAC : )

Love of beauty is Taste. The creation of beauty is Art