I’ve always hankered after that wonderful ‘continental’ style that reeks of money and time for pampering. I imagine myself having facials, mani-pedi’s, endless hours at the hairdresser – and walking down the street looking so cool that heads turn and people gaze in wonder.

Instead I rush for trains, plan to paint my nails, but rarely get round to it and sit in the hairdresser working on my laptop once every six weeks, waiting for it to end. So I clearly don’t want it that much – unless I can have style without forfeiting my exciting work life?
The truth is – I want to look that good, but I don’t want to spend the time. So I’ve learned to ask for help – and then follow the recommendations, of course.

Make up

Once in a while, I treat myself to time with Sarah Jagger to sort out my make up. It feels wonderfully ‘girly’ and decadent. She helps me stay up to date, keeping me as youthful as possible – and she takes into account that I’m not going to spend ages each morning on getting it right.

For a lazy make up artist like me, there is a real temptation to keep doing what I’ve always done. It worked before, so why not now? Because it pegs me as a 60’s babe stuck in a time warp. And that is really aging. So those couple of hours with Sarah, mooching through my slap bag, throwing out the dated or out of date and experimenting with options is useful as well as great fun and I love it

Tracy GallagerHair

My hair is the domain of Tracey Gallager, a superb colourist. I saw Andrew Barton on the TV at a point where I had decided ‘enough was enough’ and I needed a hair rethink. The first comment when arriving at the salon was – ‘if you want grey, you’ve come to the wrong place, we only use it on the walls!’ Tracey soon had me looking loads younger, with a dazzle of different colours hat invited numerous comments of how great I looked. But even here, I can’t stand still. Tracey treats my hair as an on going project we are always making small adjustments to keep me looking and feeling like I have that continental glamour that I crave. http://www.andrewbarton.tv

susan Bull

Clothes, of course, are Sue’s domain. We became firm friends the day I tried on a yellow knitted dress. She took one look and said, ‘take it off, you look like a banana!’ At that moment I knew I could trust her. A useless shopper, I stand and wait for the advice. I’ve learned always to give it a go – the pieces with no hanger appeal are often the very best. And I trust she won’t let me leave the shop looking like mutton or my Gran.

What’s the Lesson?

The biggest lesson is to keep evolving. That doesn’t mean being a fashion victim – that would really make me look like mutton! Sue would say ‘dress for style and accessorise for fashion’ which means wearing timeless style in a way that is up to date and trendy. And it’s been well worth listening to the advice – I’d still be in my old denim skirts and white blouses, with a standard bob and blue eyeshadow, if it wasn’t for my Guru’s. I treasure and value their ability to keep me in good form, looking more elegant and attractive now than I ever did in my youth. So maybe continental chic is possible with minimal effort, as long as there is maximum help along the way!
So my advice to you is to ask for help when you need it or when you suspect there is more than you presently know. Listen to what they say, then decide what you want to follow. And enjoy it! It’s a real eye opener to see yourself through someone else’s eyes – and it can pay off in spades!

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