Last minute, budget Royal Wedding ideas!

Today, a few super-quick, oh-so-easy (and cheap!) ideas for getting the family into the party spirit tomorrow!

Who needs bunting? Create instant, colour-coordinated party atmosphere by separating the red, white and blue balloons in an economy pack of party balloons (if you’ve already got a bag tucked away somewhere, all the better!). Group them in bunches of three – there’s no better, quicker way to transform a room/garden (weather forecast? What weather forecast?!).

Make a batch of easy-peasy fairy cakes/cupcakes and simply serve in some Union Jack cupcake cases (available for a pound or so at supermarkets, including Sainsbury’s and Waitrose). Or why not make chocolate crispy cakes – great for even the littlest ones to be involved with – with white chocolate, and popping alternating red and blue Smarties on top of each?

Even easier, simply pop mini flags (or get the kids to make some and stick them onto cocktail sticks!) into a pack of bought traditional tea cakes (simple but very effective, with their silver and red foil wrappers twinkling!).

However you spend the day tomorrow, wishing you a lovely time!

And spare a thought for my friend who, tasked with contributing suitably coloured fabric for creating bunting at her childrens’ school – how’s that for “mummy homework”?! – at the last minute, opted to cut up her husband’s blue and white striped pjs. Apparently, they were already on the way out …



Wedding belles …

Nonstopmama has managed to resist posting, well, non-stop, on all the Royal Wedding-inspired beauty booty and more that’s appeared since we flagged up (sorry) the lovely Nails Inc. “jewel”-encrusted nail polishes. But now, with just two days to go, we had to feature these limited editions …

What better way to smooth and soften bare legs (if the sun shines on Friday!) than with The Body Shop‘s patriotically packaged Strawberry Body Butter (£12.50)? Based on the original, bestselling (and endlessly copied) Body Butter formula – famously fab for softening tough spots such as elbows, knees and heels – it’s made with Community Trade shea and cocoa butters.

Meanwhile, the cute Union Jack-adorned Born Lippy Strawberry Lip Balm (a snip at £2) is just the thing for princesses – big and small! – to pucker up with …

And on a non-beauty note, if you’re planning a picnic or just a sprawl-out in the garden, this Union Jack Picnic Blanket at John Lewis (£12) offers a gorgeously bright and cheerful twist on tradition (there are flasks, notebooks and more in the range, too – check them out at

“Y” is for yellow nails for Innocent!

Intro-juicing (sorry) the nonstopmama, “Queen of Y” photo for Innocent drinks!

When the super-creative types at Innocent (yummy Smoothies and fab Fruity Tubes that never “boomerang” back unopened in school lunchboxes) invited nonstopmama – along with 25 other bloggers and websites - to be a part of their alphabet fridge magnet photo challenge, we were given some homework: to take a fun photo featuring our designated letter. As the “Innocent Queen of Y”, we’ve gone for “Y” is for yellow, sunshine-y nails!!

Read more.

My beauty secrets: Emily Cohen of Sunuva

A lot can happen on a family holiday. A few years back, Emily Cohen – co-founder of the Sunuva range of children’s UV-protective swimwear – went on a May half term beach break en famille and came home with a business plan. Whilst away, Emily had coincidentally met up with another nursery mum, Sabrina Naggar, and they got talking about the lack of SPF swimwear for kids in styles, prints and colours they liked. Sunuva was born.

Today, Sunuva’s high quality, “boho”-with-a-twist swim and beachwear for girls and boys is hotly sought after (I love the prettily puffed sleeves of the Girls Rash Vests, which have an SPF 50, and the non-SPF Boys Swimming Shorts in Marine Stripe). There are throw-on beach dresses and accessories for mamas, too, along with brightly coloured Havaiana flip-flops, funky swimming googles, swimming aids and more.

Here, Emily shares her on-the-go, holiday beauty tips with nonstopmama.

1.  Along with your sunscreen, wear a good size hat in the sun, to minimize sun damage to the face. Sunuva do fabulous and authentic, matching straw cowboy hats (right) for mums and kids!

2.  Dr Hauschka’s Rose Day Cream is totally pampering and luxurious. When you need to use as few products as possible – so you can apply and run – this would be my one desert island must have, for all year round and all weather conditions.

3.  Leave conditioner  in your hair all day, once a week. Brush it through so it looks like smart, slicked back hair. When you wash the conditioner out, your hair really feels soft and shining. This is a particularly good trick if you colour your hair.

4.  Take good supplements. For myself, I take a liquid supplement that helps to strengthen nails and hair, as well as helping to boost the immune system.

5.   Last, but not least, my favourite indulgence is a bath with Olbas Oil. I literally feel like I have been to a spa …

For more info, to order online or to order a brochure, go to

Wishing everyone a great, hopefully sunshine-y weekend!


Classic with a twist: Eight Hour Cream SPF 50

To mark the launch, just this morning, of the Eight Hour Cream UK Facebook page, Elizabeth Arden invited nonstopmama to review the new Eight Hour Cream Sun Defense for Face SPF 50 (£23).

It’s today’s giveaway on the new page, where – for the next two months – Elizabeth Arden will be giving away one product every day from its hugely popular Eight Hour Cream range (just “like” the page and click to enter).

Originally launched in the Thirties, Elizabeth Arden’s Eight Hour Cream (£23.49) is one of the best “multi-taskers” in the business. The super-nourishing formula can be used to condition dry skin just about anywhere – from lips to nails, elbows to knees – hence, the famous white tube bearing the Elizabeth Arden “red door” logo is a permanent fixture in many a pro make-up artist’s bag of tricks (who’ve even been known to use it to tame a frizzy hairline, at a pinch).

A self-confessed SPF-in-skincare freak (not least for children – see the post on Nivea’s Sun Kids range on Monday), I love the idea of a must-have moisturiser being combined with seriously serious (!) sun protection.  Read more.

  • About

    Jenni Baden HowardFashion, beauty, fitness, family, food and more, daily!

    A beauty, health and fitness writer and work-from-home mama, I’ve contributed to a wide range of British glossies, newspapers and weekend supplements, along with many beauty and lifestyle websites.

    Now in my Forties, I truly believe that true beauty is both ageless and timeless (although I could be biased).

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