A Touch of Rosebud Blush: Skin Illuminator
8 June 2017 | VA Notes Beauty

A Touch of Rosebud Blush: Skin Illuminator

A young Brigitte Bardot was the very definition of sun kissed.

The smile, the rosebud cheeks, the freckles and the luscious long blonde locks only added to her allure not to mention her killer figure.

She was the poster girl for summer and all the natural beauty it entails.

The most important beauty secrets are simple. A smile backed up with large doses of confidence and a big portion of happy are truly the start and finish to feeling beautiful.

For without the self-confidence, the laughter and a joyous nature, all the tricks of the beauty trade won’t help us one little bit.

read more
The Whole Going Grey Thing
6 June 2017 | VA Notes Beauty

The Whole Going Grey Thing

Lately the whole going grey/being grey conundrum has been on my mind.

As most of you know I have been taking the leave-my-hair-alone approach for a couple of years now.

Let me start our discussion by saying grey hair is not for everyone and I respect that opinion.

Friends either love or hate my grey hair; on the whole most days it would seem I am winning. Yes, maybe it is ageing or should I be more specific and say it doesn’t let me fool anyone. Grey hair generally means we have been around the block a few times and seen our share. Most days I am absolutely 100 % with that but there are days I find it confronting.

I don’t wish to fool anyone else but every now and then I would happily indulge in a little self-denial.

Going grey requires large doses of patience, a fair amount of self-confidence and a not-giving-in kind of approach.

read more
Going Nude
18 May 2017 | VA Notes Beauty

Going Nude

Going nude??

5 ways and counting.

Ha, ha don’t panic

I am covering up more and more these days, except in my make up.

As the temperatures mount, the season trend for fresh faced beauty and neutral shades is one that I am ready to follow.

Whenever is “nearly nude” not a trend?

This natural look in make-up is one I have always loved and it is one I find even more of a winner now.

If I make up too much on my face not only do I feel silly but also uncomfortable.

Too much generally means a re-start.

read more
The Best Kept Beauty Secrets #17
8 May 2017 | VA Notes Beauty

The Best Kept Beauty Secrets #17

Beauty is one of those extraordinary and intangible qualities.

We find beauty in the most obvious and the least likely ways and each of us interpret what we find beautiful very differently.

The joy of life is the search and the discovery of what we each consider, beauty.
For beauty is, ‘in the eye of the beholder’ and thankfully that is so otherwise life would be very black and white. Nothing gives me greater pleasure than watching how others interpret and never do we each see in the same way.

It is really a miracle.

As I think about the beauty secrets that aren’t those easily dispensed from a tube or those that require the hands of others I find my thoughts resting with those qualities to inspire and the attributes that help us grow as women.

read more
The Pick Of The Eye Pencils
7 May 2017 | VA Notes Beauty

The Pick Of The Eye Pencils


Eye liner is a love/hate thing with me.

I like the dark upswept or heavily outlined look on others. I struggle to get it quite right on myself.

The ageing process, as much as I like it intellectually, does have some downsides.

I could blame age and a tendency for the eyes to be less wide open than they once were but in truth I was never much good at the application of eye liner.

It is a twofold dilemma.

read more
The Best Kept Beauty Secrets #16
27 April 2017 | VA Notes Beauty

The Best Kept Beauty Secrets #16

Beauty comes in many different packages.

Being beautiful is a life long work and of course I am not meaning the physical attributes here.

Yes, most of us want to be more beautiful in whatever way is acceptable and desirous to us but deep down we know it is a lot more complicated than diet, exercise, needles, scalpels and potions.

Internal beauty requires dedication.

The kind of beauty that makes us wake up each day and feel well within, beauty that makes us engage positively with others, be generous and for the most part enrich the lives of those we love and those around us.

This is not a one, two three easy beauty secret to share; we can’t take it or buy it.

read more
Travel Diaries: She Won’t Mind If I Tell You
16 April 2017 | VA Notes Beauty

Travel Diaries: She Won’t Mind If I Tell You

She won’t mind, I know she won’t.

The best part of travelling with a girlfriend is the talk time.

Having an extended length of time with none of the normal day-to-day responsibilities is the greatest luxury of all.

It is the kind of time that doesn’t come around that often but when it does it means everything and more.

We travelled together for ten days and I don’t think we stopped talking other than to sleep.
We talked the big, the small and all the in-between.

Living thousands of miles and many years apart means nothing in the grand scheme of things; when you are friends, you are friends.

Distance means nothing and time together is a precious commodity.

read more
Revisiting French Rules: Lips And Eyes
18 March 2017 | VA Notes Beauty

Revisiting French Rules: Lips And Eyes


French women might not regard these winning combinations as rules.

When it comes to how many French women wear their make-up, they do follow a couple of particular patterns, in my observation at least. 

And from where I sit with make-up, I believe it is a winning formula.

Lips and eyes, with a French take, works like this.

read more
Made Up, Out The Door And Ready To Go In 5
14 March 2017 | VA Notes Beauty

Made Up, Out The Door And Ready To Go In 5

We would all like to be made up and ready to go in 5.

As much as we talk about spending time and taking time when it comes to the practicalities of day to day it is useful to whizz through them at the speed of light.

I don’t for a moment think it took fashion photographer, Tim Walker and his team minutes to make up and stage the fabulous Helena Bonham Carter ;)

Feeling fabulous and understanding our personal style does take investment on many levels but looking, ready-to-go can be something we learn to master very quickly.

I need a certain level of “maintenance” to make this happen.

read more