It's the peak of plum season, and things are looking especially plummy this fall, especially when it comes to makeup. It's regal, more flattering than you might think and a fun way to add a little drama to your look. Dark, smoldering eyes are back in a big way, as are juicy-looking lips and darker shades of polish on shorter nails. Here's some plum-perfect favorites ripe for the picking.
1 Clinique Sultry Plum mascara, $13.50, department stores. At least five major makeup lines have purple-hued mascaras in their collections, and this is one of the very best. Don't be thrown by the electric-looking color on the wand -- once applied it looks subtle, slightly brownish and much less harsh than wearing layers of black.
2 Yves Saint Laurent Jaipur compact, $50. Yves Saint Laurent, 166 Maiden Lane. The purple in the center of this limited-edition paisley-print pressed powder is surrounded by two shades of bronze to be used together or swept together over the entire face.
3 Stila Perfectly Plum eye and cheek palette, $30, Nordstrom. Three shades of eye shadow and lovely blush come lined up in this tweed compact, complete with mirror.
4 Kevyn Aucoin Basic Plum eyeliner, $22, Neiman Marcus. This creamy pencil comes with a blending applicator on the opposite side, which Aucoin makeup artist Nabiha Bukhari uses to blend in the color at the lash line for a seductive, smoky look. The pencil's deep plum tones are blended with a metallic brown that gives it a more universal appeal than some other, more purple-y liners.
5 LIP INK® Mini Kit in Plum, $33, www.lipink.com. This wax-free, semi- permanent lip color comes in 55 colors and contains natural pigments and 40 natural herbs and botanicals, including goldenseal, chamomile, rosemary extract, seaweed, calendula extract and beta carotene. I was skeptical when I first applied the liquid stain, but the color really did last all day and I only applied one layer. It can be applied in multiple layers for deeper color and isn't drying like many of the other long-lasting lip formulas can be.
6 Revlon Perfectly Polished Perfectly Plum lip gloss palette, $9.99, drugstores. Five shades, ranging from a pale purple frost to deep burgundy, handy for transitioning from a daytime office look to a vampier, sexier pout after hours. Works very well over the LIP INK® color mentioned above.
7 Plum Sapone per Cucina, $12, Scheuer Linen, 340 Sutter St. The artful packaging on this sweet-smelling soap makes it ideal for gift giving to your favorite hostess (or yourself).
8 Plum Plum Super Softening Body Oil, $34. Bliss Spa, wwwblissworld.com. As moisturizing as lotion, but dries in seconds and leaves you with that lovely just-stepped-out-of-the-shower sheen and a fresh, slightly fruity scent. For an added treat, head to the spa at the W Hotel on Third Street, where the treatment menu includes a $65 Plum Plum pedicure, in which your feet are "pruned and preened to perfection" with a plum-scented hot cream massage. If you go today, you'll also get free body oil and choice of Essie nail polish.