I can never bring myself to put away my FitFlops each autumn. When other mamas have sensibly progressed from open toes to opaques and boots, I’m still in the trusty, go-with-everything-black pair that have made the world of difference to my posture (I’ve had back problems since my early teens). They also make me feel like I’m doing something to improve my fitness without realising it (a bit like doing Step classes in my pre-children days, but without the embarrassing issue of grapevining to the left when everyone else was going right). They’re a hard habit to break but, from this season, FitFlop fans don’t have to with the arrival of the FitFlop Mukluk. A fab-looking sheepskin boot, it features the same FitFlop ‘Microwobbleboard’ technology designed to help you walk taller whilst toning your thighs and bottom, um, to boot. Inspired. For more info, visit fitflop.com.
A new school term, another series of The Great Lunchbox Challenge. This week, we managed to get in some homemade flapjacks – using wholegrain porridge, a great way of getting some in under the radar – from How to feed your whole family a healthy, balanced diet with very little money … by Gill Holcombe. Full of reassuringly doable, traditional-with-a-twist ideas – for example, fishfingers get a makeover with layers of tomato, spinach and mozzarella – it devotes an entire section to the lunchbox dilemma and offers some refreshingly real, down-to-earth solutions. The follow-up, Fish Pies and French Fries, Vegetables, Meat and Something Sweet, has just been published.
I don’t think les chimistes in the Bourjois cosmetics lab had the quickie, super-effective removal of children’s face paints in mind when they developed the company’s new Express Cleansing Wipes. Nevertheless, I can vouch that they work wonders, whisking away all traces of a ‘friendly tiger’ and ‘playful puppy’ in seconds to leave nothing but a fresh, French cologne-y smell. The sofa covers are another issue …
If, like nonstopmama, you’re partial to a flash of hot pink, you’ll love Butter London’s gorgeous 3 Free Nail in Primrose Hill Picnic. Slightly thinner than standard polishes, it’s super-easy to apply and get a clean, almost professional-looking finish (ideal for the impatient and splodge-prone, like me).
With any polish, to fast-forward drying time – and for an extra-glassy shine – Seche Vite Dry Fast Top Coat (£8.95) is fantastic. Beauty pros love it and, not surprisingly, it’s scooped lots of awards including In Style’s Best Beauty Buys 2009. No more hobbling around the house on your heels, trying to avoid the inevitable smudges. It’s available from nailsbymail.co.uk.
Two great new lip glosses that won’t blow your budget: Nivea’s Glamorous Gloss (£3.45), available in Pink, Red and Natural, gives a good but not gloopy shine and a subtle but definitely ‘there’ colour.
Meanwhile, Maybelline New York’s new Superstay Power Gloss (£6.99) combines serious staying power with a glamorous gleam. Apply the colour, let it dry (thankfully fast), top with the clear gloss and go …