• What to know

    Caught in a vortex of late nights, naughty food and more than just-the-one cocktail?  It sounds obvious but…invest a little time on your health so you don't pay for it on the 24th   with a socking dose of influenza.  My top tips for 'Seasonal - Project Me':

    1. Between work, parties and shopping, book a bespoke facial with Dr Nigma Talib (www.healthydoc.com).  She'll assess the damage and work accordingly.  Alcohol - as we all know - parches the body.  So Dr Nigma will hydrate the skin and importantly the lips, with a cocktail of vitamins and huge doses of hyaluronic acid (aka HA), your skin's natural filler.  "You lose half of your hyaluronic acid by the age of 40," explains Dr. Nigma. Using oxygen, the HA and vitamins are pushed deep into the skin to fill out the fine lines and wrinkles and to stimulate collagen and elastin naturally. You may leave clutching a pot of B complex supplements for boosting energy levels. 

    2. Get to Canyon Juicery (www.canyonjuicery.com).  "I suggest the Hydrate! Coconut, pineapple and lime," says owner Amy Terry.  "Good Green 1 and 2 are also powerful detoxifiers! Party on."

    3. Looking ghostly?  Add a bit of colour to your chops with Gradual Face Tan by James Read (www.jamesreadtan.com). 

    4. Legs feeling tired and heavy from clipping about in heels - or better still - from wild abandon on the dance floor?  My latest discovery is Air-Lite by Legology (created by beauty journalist Kate Shapland and available at www.liberty.co.uk).  It helps to drain, reduce puffiness and fight the C-word (cellulite), smells like the Amalfi coast and combined with specific massage (instructions in the box) it really does work.  But only 500 jars have been made - so run.  Your pins will thank you.

    5. Finally if all else fails - cheat.  Use lashings of Charlotte's Magic Cream - created by make-up wizardess, Charlotte Tilbury, who for years has been mixing-up her own salve to slather on supermodels. But now we can all get our hands on a pot of her magic. (www.charlottetilbury.com)

  • Where to go

    Scrabbling round packed stores, jingle bells playing, worried faces, over-spending - that kind of Christmas shopping is a thing of the past.

    Things have changed, Christmas shopping is no longer about shops. Now you sit peacefully at home, lap-top open, cup of tea and a gift list at the ready. But the downside is that you don't find those unexpected presents or just generally feel the cheer. 

    So I urge you to make a trip to the most magical department store in town… Liberty.  Unexpectedly I found myself there this week - between a Prada short-film screening and drinks with best-girlfriends at Claridges. You can't fail to be sprinkled with Liberty's magic. 

    The store doesn't really need to do much to feel special - it already looks like Hogwarts.  But of course they've gone to town - particularly on the top floor, in the Christmas shop where decorations range from full-size reindeer to glass baubles housing tiny robin red-breasts.  Tables are crammed with nostalgic toys and board games, there's a whole cavernous room dedicated to old-school penny sweets and a bath shop for above-and-beyond smelly luxury.  Plus the women's fashion buying is spot-on and the sunglasses area on the ground floor does a mean range in Chanel and Celine.  

    On the whole, shops should be avoided from November onwards.  But make an exception for Liberty's.  And even better, go at 7pm when the store's half empty. 


  • What to know

    Looking for something a bit special to wear during the holidays? Then check out the new Resort collections. 

    Once upon a time, these 'cruise' collections were small runs created for fancy folk heading to sunny climes during the winter months.  But with the consumer's increasingly voracious appetite for 'new', designers from Peter Pilotto to Celine now create a substantial line that appears in shops right now - just when we're all feeling a little malaise at the Autumn/Winter collections, some of which has been in the shops since July.

    Top of the hanker list is the French-girl chic of Louis Vuitton's Resort collection.  A denim trouser suit, a chambray dress and a frayed-edge tweed and leather jacket (sounds revolting, looks a dream). 

    Wear the looks now with thermals and cashmere - unless of course you're really cruising.