You won't see her, but she's there, in the salons, spas and shops, and she's happy to share her secrets on lip gloss.
The Beauty Spy: Gloss up for Valentine's Day
When my handbag was stolen at Geneva Airport last year the first thing I realised with horror was that I would have to live without my make-up bag full of nine lip glosses. Never mind that my passport was gone, along with the children's passports and my husband's, as well as my gorgeous Montegrappa pen, wallet, credit cards and the car key. What really bothered me was that I had lost the one thing I can't do without. The policeman who took my statement lost the will to live as I listed all the makes and colours of my glosses.
"Could we just say various personal effects?" he asked me.
Nine lip glosses might seem excessive to you. They certainly were to the thief. When my bag was found again the following day, the thief had stolen only two of them (and left all our passports, thankfully) - the Laura Mercier Lip Plumper in lychee and the Chanel Levres Scintillantes No. 19 Blizzard. Excellent choices. The first one is perfect for a no-make-up look, the second for when you're after a more pronounced pout. Although you still can't get Laura Mercier in the UAE - do something, somebody!
The reason I have so many lip glosses is that I have one to suit my every mood. A lip gloss is so much more than just something to put on your lips. If you're feeling dull and want to spice up your image then go for a gloss such as the shockingly pink Chanel Levres Scintillantes No. 104. It is young, lively, bright, bling, brash and has an empowering effect the minute you put it on.
For the beach, go for the Philosophy Kiss Me Very Emollient Lip Balm, a lemony, tangy, gorgeous, unctuous ointment that really does leave you feeling kissable; the more sober but sensible, due to its sun protection, Jo Malone Vitamin E Lip Conditioner SPF 15; and the timeless Elizabeth Arden Eight Hour Cream. Elegant women have been using the Eight Hour Cream for decades; I can imagine Audrey Hepburn carrying around a small tube. It can work as a clear gloss, is moisturising and, at least in my house, has such an image of potency that the children believe it stops everything from a graze to a bee sting from hurting.
But what I might have to do from now on is to replicate the lip gloss bag I carry around at home. That way I won't ever have another 24 hours without it. I got through it, but I'm not keen to repeat the experience.
Three of the Best
Spoil yourself or someone else this Valentine's Day with these luxurious body lotions.
JO MALONE RED ROSES BODY CREME DH310 Temptingly rich, teasingly heady and smelling of red roses - yes, this is a description of our ideal man, but also one of our favourite new body products.
GUERLAIN IDYLLE DH242 With a fragrance of spring flowers, this delicate silky lotion absorbs quickly and illuminates the skin with a subtle dusting of gold micro-pearl.
L'OCCITANE ROSE SHIMMERING LOTION DH180 A light, moisturising body milk that leaves skin soft and delicately perfumed. Apply liberally for a shimmering warm glow.
M Loves: Fabulous February Deals
1. Unleash your inner goddess at Tips & Toes and enjoy a rose petal mani/pedi, a mini facial, eyebrow threading and eyelash extensions all for just Dh700. Valid at all Tips & Toes branches. Call 04 399 0550 to find your nearest location.
2. Indulge in a two-hour Chocolate Body Treatment at La Contour Spa (including a chocolate body scrub, wrap and body massage), plus an express facial and a classic mani/pedi for Dh600. La Contour Spa, Jumeirah Lake Towers, 04 447 3626, www.lacontourspa.com
3. Be silky-smooth with a 20 per cent discount on Laser Hair Removal packages at Kaya Skin Clinic until the end of March. www.KayaSkinClinic.me