Neon nails are always a good idea

essie nail polish in serial shopper
Essie Nail Colour in Serial Shopper, £7.99

You know, sometimes a nail colour comes along that steals the limelight from the rest of the new launches and this summer, Essie’s Nail Colour in Serial Shopper, £7.99, is the ONE.

How do I know this? Well, I’ve been wearing it constantly since I got my hands on it about a month ago (it looked great in Ibiza) and in the past week I’ve come into contact with five different people wearing my nail polish. Which I think you’ll agree is unusual, considering how many nail colours have launched this summer.

I can’t explain what is about this shade that captures the vibe of summer 2014, but what I do know is that like Ibiza, neon is always a good idea.


The best new season nude lipstick

Nars Satin Lip Pencil in Isola Bella £17.50

If the new beauty season has taught me anything it’s that no matter how many trend reports tell me that a deep burgundy lipstick will be my AW/13 must have, if Kate Moss and Cara Delvingne go out wearing a nude lip look – that’s going to be my new choice of lippy shade.

However, we all know finding a nude lipstick that doesn’t make you look as washed out as all those poor fashionistas going to NYFW/LFW/MFL/PFW without a break, is harder than getting on the FROW.

Aah, to save you the hard work I have actually found the perfect nude lipstick. It’s a kinda peachy, beige with a tiny hint of orange, that has got loads of pigment so gives amazing coverage, say hello to Nars Satin Lip Pencil in Isola Bella, £17.70.

Promise it’ll give you that nude lip look that everyone has been wearing both on and off the catwalks – you can thank me later!

How to extend your tan

Lancaster Legendary Tan Nourishing Oil, £30.

When I say how to extend your tan what I actually mean is, this is my favourite after-a-day-on-the-beach product EVER and I think you need to know about it. What is it? Lancaster Legendary Tan Nourishing Oil, £30.

It probably hasn’t gone unnoticed that it’s another Lancaster product, well that’s because I am obsessed with their sun care and have been since I first started using it on beauty shoots in places like Miami and Barbados in the late nineties (did I just admit that).

Up until this year I religiously used the iconic Lancaster Tan Maximiser, £22. Admittedly you pretty much need to use a bottle a week on holiday, but it works and is the only product I’ve found that does what it does and that’s extend your tan without fake tan. Until now!

Oh yes, this year saw the launch of the oil version which I was sceptical about using at first but it delivers the same Tan Activator Complex as Tan Maximiser. How does it work? When you apply it after being in the sun it helps to intensify melanin production and prolongs your tan.

I’ve just used it on holiday and I can report that it worked and my tan has definitely stayed glowy for longer and what’s more a bottle of this lasts about four times as long as a bottle of the original.

I know what my new holiday must-have product is!

My top 5 holiday empties

My holiday empties

Just in case you can’t guess from my arty pool picture, I call it the floating beauty empties, I’ve just got back from a very hot – nearly two weeks – in Majorca.

And, rather than give you the lowdown of the new AW/13 beauty trends, I thought you might be interested in what sun care products my little family used and finished every last drop of on holiday. Here goes…

1 Nivea Sun Protect & Refresh SPF30, £8.49, the OH and myself used this from stepping off the plane and we didn’t burn once.

2 Soltan’s Once Kids 8 Hour Play Suncare Lotion, SPF50, £15.99 currently £7.99, applied on the kids and on my heat rash before we hit the beach everyday and the protection lasted pretty much till the second long stint in the sea.

3 Lancaster Sun For Kids Invisible Mist Wet Skin SPF50, £21, perfect for spritzing on the kids while on the beach as it works even if they’re still wet and it dries in seconds. Quick – tick. Clear – tick. Posh – tick.

4 Elizabeth Arden Eight Hour Cream Sun Defense Stick SPF50 High Protection, £15, a total unsung beauty hero as this little stick makes it easy to cover vulnerable areas and does not melt or crumble in the heat, which trust me, a lot of other sun care sticks do, do!

5 Garnier Ambre Solaire Sensitive Advanced Face & Body After Sun, £9.99, don’t be put off by the ‘Sensitive’ tag as this after sun is amazing and can be used by the whole family. How can I tell? Erm, this was the one holiday product that you had to fight to get your hands on!

Say goodbye to frizzy hair

John Frieda Frizz-Ease Dream Curls Enhancing Oil, £9.99

I know I try and hide the fact that I’ve got naturally frizzy, oh I mean curly, hair but the reality is it’s a daily battle to tame my mane. Especially in this weather!

Truth-be-known I am a bit of a DIY mixologist when it comes to my hair products, because through experience I’ve realised that no one product gives me the results I want for my hair.

You see to make my curls look even slightly groomed I like the hold of a mousse but the gloss of a serum, currently I’m using a mix of Sebastian Whipped Creme, £16.50 and Mark Hill Magic Drops Rescue and Repair Serum, £4.33 . You may think it’s quite easy mixing your own products – trust me, it’s not as too much mousse can make curls go crispy and too much serum can make it look greasy. I know curly girls will be with me on this.

Which is why I’m constantly switching and mixing products as I’ve never found something that ticks all the boxes. But, I have just discovered a good, well, primer (stay with me, it’s the only way I can think to describe it) for my hair.

Say hello to the new John Frieda Frizz-Ease Dream Curls Enhancing Oil, £9.99, which is incredibly lightweight for an oil based hair product. You have to shake the bottle to mix up the dual solution then I apply it to my freshly washed hair, before using my other styling products as usual.

I was a bit sceptical about adding another step to my hair routine but this is well worth the effort as it makes my hair feel soft and silky and gives me frizz-free curls.

If your hair is acting up at the moment this is well worth a try.

Want to try my fast beach body fix?

This is how it goes every year for me, I leave the beach body prep to the last minute and then panic, realising that I’m not going to look like Gwyneth Paltrow in a bikini any time soon.

So, I thought it might be useful to share my last minute holiday prep, as if you’re anything like me you wouldn’t have done quite enough Spin classes to give you the type of beach body that you want!

About a month before I go away I start, what I call, my scrubbing and rubbing bootcamp. I slather my body from head to toe while in the shower with a good body scrub, and by good I mean one that actually has enough grit in it so that your skin slightly hurts when you use it. That’s what everyone wants a scrub to do, right?

My current go-to scrub is the new Elemis Skin Nourishing Body Scrub, £28.50, which contains natural exfoliators of rice, bamboo and bora bora sand to polish the skin and sweet almond oil and organic oat extract to nourish the skin.

Elemis Skin Nourishing Body Scrub, £28.50

It’s not at the cheaper end of the market but it works and is even rough enough to transform ugly feet into Instagram ready feet, which believe me isn’t the case with a majority of body scrubs.

Then, I admit it, I use a cellulite busting lotion and this year I’ve been using the new Clarins Body Lift Cellulite Control, £36. And again I think you do get what you pay for in this beauty area. I’ve been using this one for over four weeks now and my legs definitely look better than they did and the dreaded cellulite appears to be smoother.

Clarins Body Lift Cellulite Control, £36

Ok, I won’t quite look as hot as Gwynnie on the beach, but my skin does look smoother, more even toned and less bumpy – which is good enough for me.

Although, next year I’m going to have Tracy Anderson on speed dial – anyone got her number?

Yeah, Maybelline Baby Lips arrive today!

Maybelline Baby Lips, £2.99

Waiting for Maybelline Baby Lips, £2.99, to arrive in the UK has been as painful as waiting for the Royal baby to appear.

Luckily, we can all now turn off the 24hour Sky news feed as the little Prince has arrived, and so have Maybelline’s Baby Lips with the whole range of six flavoured lips balms hitting stores today.

These little babies are packed with Shea butter to soften lips, Centalla to plump lips, Vitamin complex to condition lips and SPF 20 to protect lips. Phew.

Ok, so Maybelline were a day out with their launch date but my money is on Hydrate (the baby blue one) selling out quicker than you can slick the balm on your lips…and that’s quick!

Maybelline Baby Lips in Hydrate Lemon basil scent and SPF20, £2.99

The teen beauty drama

I was very lucky to get a sneaky peak of Rimmel’s AW/13 make-up collection this week and there are some gorgeous products coming your way…just not yet!

Now, you know I don’t like talking about products that you can’t buy now, but I thought you’d like to know Miss T’s top picks from the new collection, including a good black eye liner that’s already in the shops.

Because, erm, she’s a bit of a make-up magpie, as soon as I walked in the front door with the bag of not-in-the-shops-yet-make-up – Miss T had delved in to check out the goodies.

She’s been asking me for ages to show her how to do a simple smoky eye, so it’s no surprise that she pulled out these products:

Rimmel AW/13


Rimmel Glameyes HD Eye Shadow in Golden Eye, £6.99 available from 2nd October

Rimmel Retro Glam Extreme Black Mascara, £6.99 available from 2nd October

Rimmel Scandaleyes Eye Shadow Stick in Blackmail, £4.49 out now

And I, yes I, who is not a make-up artist, showed Miss T how to use the products. Firstly I used the eye shadow palette and swept the silver over the whole of Miss T’s eyelid, then I blended in the lighter grey shadow over the lower eyelid before popping the gold in the inner eye corners.

I finished the look by drawing a line of the black shadow stick along the upper and lower lash lines, smudged with a brush so it didn’t look too harsh and coated curled lashes with mascara.


Miss T’s smoky eye

Miss T really liked the look and I have to say the new HD Eye Shadow palettes are brilliant with wearable colours and an amazing pigment payoff – there’s even application instructions on the back so teen queens everywhere can create their own smoky eyes! Are. You. Listening. Miss T?