So there we were, sitting on a beach in Catalonia, Sangria in one hand and sun cream in the other as all the others were at home in the freezing cold UK, beavering away. Sorry. Thanks to all writers this month – columns are truly hilarious – and to Louise our production and design editor, who has handled most of the pages for the issue on her own, while I did some travel research abroad…

So back to the beach.  It was hot, hot, hot and I swear to God I had forgotten what it felt like to be somewhere warm and sunny. We’re not blessed with good weather in the UK, are we?

So on went the Factor 50. Who cares about colour when there are wrinkles to be considered? So I plastered it on me and my four little babes. The boys, of course omitted shrieks of ‘no mum,’ and ‘stop it’ while being rugby tackled to the ground on the roof garden of the Spanish villa. While my daughter, who is only two, sat nicely and helped me apply. So we had a great holiday – but we are all home a lighter shade of pale.

I would recommend Solait clear and protect transparent sun spray, £9.99; this refreshing clear spray is specially formulated with a unique combination of sunscreens to help protect against UVA (ageing) and UVB (burning) rays, without leaving white marks. From Superdrug.

And for kids,  Solait moisturising sun lotion trigger spray for kids, £9.99, is a fun trigger spray features Radicare, a pioneering antioxidant ingredient proven to increase the skin’s tolerance to the sun which helps to protect long-term damage. Also available in a fruity berry scent to make sun application a little more fun for the little ones. Solait baby moisturising sun lotion – this hypoallergenic and fragrance free sun lotion offers a SPF50+ protection for delicate young skin.

We have a bumper mag for you this month… and now we are linked with the Daily Record on-line; we have lots of new yummies. Welcome to our wonderful world of kids, make-up and a massive sprinkling of humour and fun.

I have been asked to be one of Bio-Oil’s Skin Stories Ambassadors – so I’ll be publishing it once it’s all finished. Here’s a little about their campaign.

A spokesman said: “Skin Stories is a campaign to celebrate how every scar and stretch mark tells a story, whether it’s the birth of a child or falling off our bike when we were young. We initially launched the campaign in 2011, raising money for the British Skin Foundation and this year we are widening the number of beneficiaries to include the Iolanthe Midwifery Trust and cancer charity Look Good, Feel Better.

“The campaign will be centred around Facebook, and they will be asking people to share a few words or an image that represents their skin story via the Skin Stories tab on our Facebook page or on twitter using the hash tag #myskinstory in order to try and encourage women who are self-conscious about their scars or stretch marks to celebrate them instead.

“We all have them, so we hope that by discussing them and looking at the stories behind them rather than focusing on their physical appearance, it will make everyone realise just how common they actually are. You can take a look at last year’s campaign and see some of the inspirational stories that were shared:


Here’s some of what’s in the mag…


Diary of a sleep-deprived yummy

Current contents of my pockets: one hanky (snot-filled, obv), two shopping lists, one small plastic sweetcorn (from daughter No1′s shopping set), two small girls’ hair clasps (Hello Kitty design), one Smartie, one battery (AA size), three assorted pieces of fluff, one Peppa Pig mobile phone.

Laid out in front of me, it makes for a bizarre little collection to say the least. How the hell do I end up with all this crap about my person on a daily basis? And don’t even get me started on the contents of my Mary Poppins-style holdall. Read more.


Dishy Daddy…

Our 11-year-old screamed. Our two-year-old howled and our six-year-old emitted a noise akin to a WW1 amputation, without anesthetic! It was FREEZING and despite my Scottish heritage, and my memories of swimming in the North Sea as a kid, I had to admit it was a non starter. So we got the ‘free cover’ supplied with the Olympic-sized reject and covered it up. The kids quickly dressed and huddled together in fear of hyperthermia and I decided a spot of gardening was in order. Read more.


Tara’s Fav Finds

Ever used one of those Sonic toothbrushes? Remember how super clean they make your teeth feel? Well, Clarisonic works on the same technology. I’ve been waiting such a long time to get my hands on one of these babies; friends who have one, cannot live without it and I’ve been dying to give one a go.

The Mia 2 has two speed settings and a pulsing ‘T-Timer’ so you know how long to cleanse each zone of your face. It comes with a two-year warranty, a handy ‘Protective Travel Case’ and a Universal Voltage charger – loving this; it magnetically clips onto the handle of your Clarisonic to charge it! Read more.


Inge’s Beauty Box

Most of us will experience sensitive skin at some point in our lives. Skin irritation is often brought on by stress, changes in hormones levels, fragrance and allergies, which can leave skin feeling parched, patchy and often a bit red. Those of us with 24/7 sensitive skin, who are also prone to rosacea, can often find it an uphill struggle to find skincare products which don’t irritate the very life out of us!

But sensitive – schmensitive – we say! Take control of irritating skin conditions by giving these foaming cleansers and soothing lotions a whirl – your skin will love you for it! Read more.


Forty-something skin…

Exfoliate, exfoliate, exfoliate … I can’t stress enough how important this is. It is one of the key steps to radiant skin all-year round and my bathroom shelf is never without some form of face scrub.

I have fairly sensitive skin so once a week is enough for me to dig deep to unplug those pores and slough off debris to leave skin that’s positively glowing. I can’t tell you how much your face will thank you for it. Just remember to always us moisturiser with an SPF to protect the skin after exfoliating.

At the moment I’m using Clinique’s Turnaround Instant Facial. Slightly different from other products I’ve used, it’s applied like a mask, left on for five minutes and then the granules are massaged off with water. It delivers all the smoothness of microdermabrasion but very delicately. Read more