This is the best gift I could possibly give my mum on Mothers’ Day; proof that I really did listen to her a lot of the time.

You were right about elbows according to you scruffy elbows make you look older than crows’ feet do. So here’s your tip for dealing with the rough, nasty, dull skin I just might have forgotten; mix sea salt crystals with a little almond oil, put the gloop in the palm of your hand and gently rotate your elbow in it – it’s messy skincare and you have to do it regularly, but it works. Try it at night and the left over oil sinks into your skin while you’re having 8 hours sleep (another Mum tip).


You were right about Vaseline I used to think you were either mad or had shares in the stuff but turns out good, old, ordinary Vaseline is one of the cheapest and best go-to’s in my kit. It’s great for removing heavy eye make-up (really dissolves mascara). It conditions eyelashes. Slather it on your heels at night and wear socks to bed (ok, not beautiful but you get nice beach feet eventually). Use it as a lip salve or a quick gloss if you’re stuck. Elbows (them again) love Vaseline. Massage it into your nails the night before a manicure. It seals and heals little cuts and scrapes and ………

You were right about Witch Hazel Remember all my broken hearts and the tears and the puffy eyes? Well Witch Hazel does work (it doesn’t mend the hearts but it does sort out the puffiness). Use a little Witch Hazel solution on a cotton pad to dab under your eyes – gently. Reduces puffiness, brightens the skin, soothes redness – fantastic if you get allergies and don’t want to look like an angry grizzly bear.


You were right about mascara I know you didn’t think I was listening when you told me ‘less is more except when it’s mascara’ but I was! Yves Saint Laurent Mascara Volume Faux Cils is my choice at the moment; single application, smooth and rich, no flakes, lengthens, thickens and makes big, luscious, weightless lashes in one swoop.

You were right about necks And I remember your words of wisdom every time I moisturise mine (more gently and carefully than anywhere else). Try Chanel Hydramax + Cream it’s also an excellent all-over, rich and fast-fix moisturiser (sounds extravagant, but it’s good for pregnant tummies too). Like my mum says ‘you only get one skin and who wants a neck like a turkey?’

You were right about shins They are the Sahara of the body; always up the SPF on shins, use a much richer body cream on them, don’t ever exfoliate them – pretty, bare legs and scrubby, desolate shins are not a good look.

wooden shoe lasts

You were right about baths showers are for getting clean and washing hair, baths are time to soak, think, read, relax – and like you always said mum – they save water.


And you were also right about Tea Tree Oil, it’s a universal antiseptic. Lavender does make you sleep better (a few drops of oil in the bath works for hyper kids too). Arnica Cream is a must in every mum’s bag. And always wear a hat when it’s cold outside!


This week I found ……Balenciaga Was Born in Spain


I always assumed Balenciaga was French. I never even thought twice about it. But in fact the ‘Great French Couturier’ was actually born in Gateria in the Basque Country (there’s a Balenciaga Museum in Gateria and it’s near San Sebastian – two good reasons to visit).

And how do I know this? Because this week I’m reading ‘The Master of Us All: Balenciaga, his workroom, his world’ by Mary Blume. It’s wonderfully written, beautiful to look through and about the first real look into the mystery of Balenciaga the couturier who gave us the ‘Cocoon’ silhouette (see Alexander Wang’s take on it at PFW 2013) and so awed his clientele that one of them claimed, she wanted to be buried in Balenciaga in case she met him in Heaven. Definitely not a ‘coffee table’ book, this one’s to read (but not in the bath).

Good timing too, Alexander Wang’s first collection for Balenciaga showed at Paris Fashion Week on Sunday – was he as good as Nicholas Ghesquiere? Anna Wintour thought so, what do you think?


Photograph of Elise Daniels by Richard Avedon 1949