I have a feeling my husband deeply hates our velvet sofa. He grumbles about it off and on and never has a nice word to say about it. Upon asking him why, he said it’s because it’s so impractical and, “You always seem to be cleaning it!” I don’t know why, but I’ve been thinking about this comment and mulling over whether our navy blue velvet sofa is, in fact, high maintenance in comparison to the other sofas we’ve had in our time. There has been a linen one, a cotton one, a leather one and now a velvet one. Here’s…

Are you still looking for that perfect Christmas gift? Forced to find something, anything that might suit the taste and preferences of the recipient? After a recent poll on my instagram account, it seems that gift vouchers are like Brussels sprouts at Christmas – you either love them or hate them. Exactly half of voters said they were a great gift idea and the other half said they are an absolute no go. I personally think they are both! Gift vouchers can be the best gift – if chosen wisely and with much thought – especially if the thought behind…

If you are anything like me, you probably feel totally overwhelmed when you walk into your nearest pharmacy or cosmetics shop. So much choice, fancy language on the packaging and long lists of ingredients make it difficult to decipher what kind of product you are actually looking at. I am a trained beautician (I went to beauty school, did a three year apprenticeship at a luxury hotel, worked as a self-employed beautician for two years, before focusing on make-up) and buying products can still be challenging! In my experience, the biggest problem most women/men have, is not knowing their skin…

If you buy just one new make-up product this year, then make sure it it this lipstick: Bombshell by MAC Cosmetics. This is the VW among all lipsticks. This obviously doesn’t sound as exciting as if I had said, “this is the Ferrari among all lipsticks” but those types of lipsticks are exotic and rare, and mainly for special occasions. This lipstick is the VW because it is like a family van – perfect for every day and for all occasions. It is a shade that suits everyone, regardless of  age, hair colour or complexion. It’s neither too glossy, nor too dry. It isn’t too pearly, nor too…

Summer is coming! If we are lucky our hair will be exposed to sun, seawater and chlorine, which means dried out hair and brittle ends are inevitable. If your hair is as schizophrenic as mine, you may also suffer from greasier roots in the warmer months, meaning even more hair washing and even less chance of having healthy looking, shiny hair. Shampoo and conditioner just aren’t enough for my long locks, which is why I have searched (for ages) for the right product to help my hair cope with summer stress. Over the years, I have tried various hair masks and deep conditioners, but they either left my…

Small bathrooms are always challenging – you have to fit in all the essentials without letting the room feel too cramped. This bathroom, or rather, shower room was particularly challenging as it measures just over 4 m²! Here is a snapshot of the shower room before renovation took place – check out those 70’s tiles! (Please excuse the poor picture quality, I was in a hurry and it is not easy to take a decent shot of a tiny room on a phone!) Although I am an advocate for tiles with a matte finish I chose glossy ones for the walls…

If you love chocolate chip cookies and really fancy something naughty and decadent, then this is the recipe for you! These irresistible cookies are soft, gooey and soooo chocolatey! Although they are rich, they are not too sweet as half of the chocolate chips are dark chocolate. You can use all dark chocolate chips if you want them to be less sweet or just milk chocolate chips for an extra sweet kick! These cookies are not crunchy like shop bought ones, they are crispy on the outside, soft on the inside and are best served warm. A quick video of this…

Don’t eat carbs, red meat, sugar, fat or salt. Don’t drink alcohol, fizzy drinks or coffee… The list of evil substances is long, so long that I won’t even try to complete it. A few years ago, I was an advocate of such a list. I tried to follow all of the commandments of what I call Super Healthy Living – I even bought Gwyneth Paltrow’s cookbook. For a good few months I was an avid follower, preaching to all and sundry about the benefits of a super healthy diet. Until I realised I was lying to myself and that…

These are the cinnamon rolls I posted on my instagram story at Christmas. Quite a few of you have asked for the recipe and I was meaning to post it over Christmas and, well, that never happened! Family took precedence, I’m afraid… Anyway, I’m sure you are all getting quite bored of your New Year’s Resolutions, so I thought I would help you out with a well deserved treat, after two whole weeks of deprivation! This recipe makes approx. 24 cinnamon rolls. Start well in advance, as the dough needs to rise twice and the rolls are best eaten the…

The problem with a lot of face powders is, that they are not fine enough, resulting in a dry, powdery finish that is readily visible to the naked eye and even more so to the unforgiving camera lens. Powder can also age a face in a trice as it can highlight fine lines if it is not finely milled and/or if it is applied incorrectly. MAC Prep & Prime Transparent Finishing Powder is so fine, it is almost invisible and yet you need not apply a lot for a perfect finish. One swish with a brush over the T-zone, blending…