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Two Lipsticks and a Lover [Paperback]

Helena Frith Powell
3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (51 customer reviews)
RRP: £7.99
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Book Description

1 Feb 2007

Why is it that French women look just as glamorous in a T-shirt and pair of jeans as in a sleek designer dress? How do they look sexy, chic and timelessly elegant from eighteen to eighty? Pencil-thin, stylishly dressed and, always, impeccably groomed?

In search of answers, travel and lifestyle journalist Helena Frith Powell goes behind the scenes to investigate the famous French je ne sais quoi. Talking to fashion gurus, beauty experts and It Girls, professional seducers, lingerie designers and personal shoppers, she discovers a whole new world: indispensable wardrobe and beauty secrets; shopping done the right way and exercise routines promising lasting success; advice on sex toys, family life, relationships and clandestine affaires. French women, Helena realises, achieve maximum effect with the least amount of effort. And with the help of a few little secrets, you too can become impossibly French ...

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Product details

  • Paperback: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Arrow (1 Feb 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0099504251
  • ISBN-13: 978-0099504252
  • Product Dimensions: 19.3 x 12.7 x 2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (51 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 97,097 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

More About the Author

Helena Frith Powell is a journalist and author who has written for, among others, the Sunday Times, the Daily Mail, Grazia, The Telegraph and Red Magazine.
She was educated at Durham University and has lived in the south of France since 2000.
It was her interest in the difference between French and English women that led to the best-selling book Two Lipsticks and a Lover, and her novel that is out now called Love in a Warm Climate.
She has also written a diet book, a book about how not to age badly, a memoir and a guide to moving to France.
She is married to the writer and journalist Rupert Wright and they have five children between them.

Product Description


"Smart and very funny" (Richard & Judy)

"Witty, and very elegantly written... verbal Viagra" (Sunday Times)

"A fascinating - and illuminating - read." (Daily Mail)

"Funny, warm and charming" (French Magazine)

"I devoured it. It is so funny and sharp!" (Marco Redolfi, Head of PR of Dolce & Gabbanna)

Book Description

A smart and witty investigation of French chic and that certain je ne sais quois, in the bestselling tradition of French Women Don't Get Fat

Inside This Book (Learn More)
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Back Cover
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
33 of 37 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Two Lipsticks and a Lover 16 Jan 2006
By A Customer
As a foreigner living in France, I was enthralled by "Two Lipsticks and a Lover". Particularly in the first half of the book, the author has managed to capture so many enigmas of French culture in a simple sentence, and with such humour. It is great to see that so many things that I had thought were just my experience cited here as "Fact". If some of it seems exaggerated, I can tell you that it is all so true!!
I highly recommend this book. In fact, I would say it is a must for non-French women living in or wanting to understand more about France.
I especially liked the fact that many of the quotes were from current females in French politics.
As I am neither English nor French, I was also able to identify with the anecdotes of what French people might think of the English.
In addition, this book made me conscious that, like the author, my years in France have made me change the way I see things: a balanced meal, the necessity of creams and treatments, ...
I found that the end of the book was less focussed but perhaps it was because it held subjects less close to my heart. Also, there is a side the French culture that is more easily explained in light of the work culture, long lunch, subsidized meals, etc. The author would only experience this having lived it. French culture is rich and so there are more enigmas out there yet for her to solve! This book is a great start.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best of the Genre 15 Jan 2013
Format:Kindle Edition
This is the first, and the best, of the books which discusses French women's style.

The book was a present when it was first published and I have read it at least once a year since. It is a combination of the generic tips (eg the importance of sparkling underwear), the very practical (eg naming award winning anti-cellulite lotions) with the personal anecdotes of the author and the individuals that she spoke to in the name of "research". It is neatly divided into topics that can be read independently of each other.

And I will keep on reading when I need a bit of inspiration or cheering up!
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19 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great gift, very practical 12 Nov 2005
I watched Helena on Richard & Judy and read the book because they said it was smart and very funny. It really is very entertaining how the book uncovers the secrets of French women. Their obsession with style and looking good is just something else. I was really pleasantly surprised about how practical the book is. It tells that French women don't do excercise but love to go shopping on foot (because you are worth it, could be a French expression!) so that they can avoid the gym. Or that they always have a 'casse' (something like a biscuit) in their handbag so that if they feel hungry they don't eat fatty or sweet snacks between meals. Very warmly recommended.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars It will cost you! 2 July 2008
No more the "5 for £1.00" from M&S and no more "just a night cream will do" approach. After reading this book Judith (my wife) has announced she "needs (but needs, not wants!) to get some new lingerie and to upgrade her cosmetics range.

Our Parisian friends confirm what Helena Frith Powell writes. So, it will cause you to spend more (but so much more wisely Judith says).

It's a book that irritates as much as it is enjoyable - at times, boring, even. And, it's clearly an Englishwoman's view of the way Parisians (and other French big-city women) go about their lives. Hence the 3*. Still a good read, though (which is why I'm buying for our two daughters - sorry hubbies!)
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12 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Sharp and amusing read 18 Oct 2005
Contrary to what I read in the Daily Mail last week, which seemed to have picked out all the negatives when it was serialised, this book is a funny and affectionate look at French women. The author has gone out and made friends with an enormous number of classy chicks, including Ines de la Fressange, who was my childhood hero. Ines and other women have opened up the sort of secrets that are only passed from mother to daughter - and then in French! She likes them, but she's not in awe of them. She also seems to have picked up a few tips from a mystery french man that she meets on the train..
All in all, an entertaining and riveting read, although I'm not going to tell you if it ends in a brief encounter!
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Programmed to seduce 13 Oct 2005
By A Customer
What is it about French women? Why are they so much more exciting than say, Albanian women? In this witty yet perceptive guide to the species, that I bought on the strength of its serialisation in the Daily Mail, the author goes undercover to discover whether the myth is true. How do they stay so thin, so elegant? Are they really programmed to seduce? Should you trust one with your boyfriend for the weekend? As well as her own experiences of trying to fit in, get groomed, and flirt with men on trains, she meets up with a number of well-known French women such as supermodel Ines de la Fressange to find out what makes them so special and the secret of their success. Her discoveries make interesting and amusing reading. I really liked this book, a sort of non-fiction Bridget Jones for grown-ups. She doesn't fall for all the usual cliches, but there are some useful tips and insights in how to look good without trying. Just don't show the book to your French friends - it might shock them!
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14 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars What an amazing book! 28 Mar 2006
By A Customer
I absolutely loved this book. Having read a ridiculous number of self help books on style (e.g. what not to wear etc) and finding them really aimed at an older audience this was such a refreshing change.
A great read for those of us who want to increase our stylishness without spending tonnes of money we havent got!

It'll also make you realise how much you really exercise etc. It's made me feel great and I've passed it on to all my friends and family.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars The French unpicked
Very funny and unsparingly accurate reflection of the French at work and play, in love and just a soupçon on the side. Only a Brit could write this!
Published 22 hours ago by Gillian Fox
5.0 out of 5 stars I will never be French but I am okay with that.
I really enjoyed this book (so much I bought it again after giving my previous copy to the charity shop). Read more
Published 25 days ago by A. M. Stout
5.0 out of 5 stars For men too
I didn't think I'd get past the first few pages of this book, but I finished it with ease. It's well written, mixing personal anecdotes of the author's life in France with the... Read more
Published 4 months ago by dj houghton
1.0 out of 5 stars hmmm
well, i liked the idea but not sure who her fellow english people are that she judges the french against. after this i felt more french than english to start with,
Published 4 months ago by London Girl
4.0 out of 5 stars Fun
I was bought this book as a gift, I then bought a second copy for a friend who loved it!
Published 6 months ago by Disax
4.0 out of 5 stars French women categorised!
having read Ciao Bella I knew I must read more of Helena's books. This is quite an insight into the lives of French Women - each chapter is a story into itself. Fasinating.
Published 6 months ago by Julian Leigh Kenyon
1.0 out of 5 stars Could not be worse.
Published by mistake. Waste of paper. Do not buy this, please, give the money to a homeless instead. Colection of clichés.
Published 6 months ago by pinpon
3.0 out of 5 stars Funny
A funny read but a bit ridiculous really. A good take on the differences between women from two different cultures.
Published 7 months ago by charlotte hammick
5.0 out of 5 stars Great read
One book I can read again and again and have. I just love it, need another one just as good
Published 7 months ago by Karen charman
4.0 out of 5 stars Ok but not great
I finished this book in a day. Depending what you are after it's a very light easy read but not much substance.
Published 8 months ago by Michelle Ward
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