Grace Coddington photo via Pinterest

This has been a week of Greek Guts, sprains and cuts – we’ve almost spent as much time at the local pharmacy as on the beach  – but it’s been wonderful to rediscover the magic of these beautiful islands. At the airport in London, I picked up a Jo Malone Basil & Neroli cologne (Agree with Vicci about Tom Ford’s gorgeous colognes but I’m a tightwad and this is a fraction of the price) which is fresh and lovely and perfect for spritzing. The inspiration for this fragrance is leafy London but to me it smells of summer holidays…



As kids, on the rare occasions we enjoyed a variety pack of breakfast cereals it felt like the best treat, ever.  For me, this effect can be recreated today with a small collection of bath/shower oils. Always a good thing to take on holiday as, in my very-low-maintenance-opinion, that’s the cleansing and moisturizing done in one. Elemis Life Elixirs Mindful Collection makes everything smell lovely – including the room. Particularly after the Clarity bottle, left open, tipped over in the shower…The Fortitude elixir came in handy after I slipped on the rocks and ended up battered and bruised. The other shower oils in the collection are Calm, Grace and Sleep – and that’s what being on holiday is all about.

To help avoid holiday hair I’ve been using 100 Acres Sage & Lemon Shampoo and Geranium & Clove Conditioner. This natural beauty range is a new discovery (two very generous 100ml bottles swiped from a hotel bathroom earlier this year and saved for summer holiday), products are made in the ‘English Countryside’ and smell delicious.  After a day at the beach, the shampoo really does leave hair feeling squeaky clean. 100 Acres is also available at Liberty. (The smaller 100ml bottles aren’t available but this is good stuff, worth decanting and Muji is good for plastic travel bottles).

At home and away, I use a dollop of Colour Wow’s Bionic Tonic after washing and then leave till almost dry and give my hair a quick whoosh with the dryer. It’s my only kale obsession and it’s brilliant (available HERE).

And finally, never think that it’s better to leave an overdue haircut till after the holiday. It’s not. I’ve spent all week looking like Catweazle

11 thoughts on “Travelling Light (part two): last-minute holiday beauty buys

  1. Ahhhh love love love a mini bottle selection. I have the Aromatherapy Associates bath oils which are absolute bliss and I always take one on holiday because there’s nothing nicer than a bath in a posh hotel. Sorry to hear you ‘had a fall’

  2. I remember those cereal variety packs when I was a kid, with the selection of tiny boxes. We only had them when our favourite grandmother came to visit and brought a grocery bag filled with special treats which my single mum of four kids could not afford. I must try to find that shampoo when I am in England in the fall. London, Bath, etc etc. A girls’ trip, my friend and I are leaving husbands at home. Woo hoo.
    P.S. Vacation accidents are de riguer on our trips. Bites, blisters, weird infections necessitating trips to the emergency room… that’s why my first aid kit is bigger than my travel cosmetic bag. Hope you heal quickly.

  3. I agree. Catweazle is fine on holiday. Enjoy yourself and s*d your hair. At least you smell gorgeous. Have fun!

    1. …….also, just discovered for a great summer fragrance Nuxe Prodigieux . It was given as a freebie when I bought some Nuxe products in M&S. It has an addictive warm weather smell.

  4. Sorry to learn about your bumps and scrapes. Heal soon!

    For those of us who rarely (as in never if they can help it), visit ‘the smoke’ and Liberty, I’ve just discovered so I may yet get my paws on that lovely-sounding shampoo and conditioner you mentioned. Delivery costs are reasonable but nothing overseas, unfortunately, so sorry, ladies living abroad.

    I did check the Liberty link first though and as usual with me, got sidetracked and into reading a piece on how to keep long hair sleek when tied back. Yikes! If I used all the products suggested my long hair would be as greasy as a tanker’s overspill within a day! Do people really use all that stuff in one go – and on just one part of their body – or am I so much out of the loop? If the latter, maybe I should go to London more often!

    Incidentally, Alyson, is the other half managing to read his copy of Fifty Shades of Grey without his specs all right?

    Have a lovely holiday.

  5. Hope you had a good holiday in the sun despite problems. I just chopped off my hair which is so much more comfortable in warm English summer weather. And more wash and wear for swimming. About to leave for a brief break in south west France including beach at Arcachon. Hair will grow back to a length I prefer and will then grapple with the colour issue how to grow in the grey and integrate it. Meanwhile it’s straw hats and I’ve been recommended one of the purple shampoos. Any recommendations? I’ve still got dyed brown hair with highlights. But need to keep brassy tones away. Last week issue of Grazia on to grey hair revolution now and this is magazine for young women. More acceptance of natural hair is on its way clearly.

    1. Try Touch of Silver by Provoke, both brightening shampoo and conditioner. Use a different conditioner every now and then to offset any harshness – just in case, not that I’ve experienced any, just being careful as we are talking chemicals here. Hope this helps.
      Happy holiday!

  6. On the topic of prominent women there were several profiles of Maria Balshaw in weekend newspapers. She has just assumed overall control of all Tate Gallery buildings across the country. Much discussion in these profiles of her not being a Cambridge and Courtauld trained art historian but someone from the North who built her career in Manchester art institutions with considerable success. From earlier pictures she looks a very sharp and original dresser who loves unusual clothes also. Maybe a good candidate for one of your real women profiles as we discussed in this forum a number of months ago when her appointment was first announced to replace Nick Serota now at Arts Council.

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