Can you believe we're halfway through February already and what a busy week it has been with 'Pancake Day' and 'Valentine's Day' just twenty four hours apart! It's kind of a shame that Shrove Tuesday came first, particularly if you gave up chocolate for Lent!
The excitement for this week isn't over yet as on Friday and Saturday we have our two-day Spring Fashion event. Loads of our fashion ranges will be featuring, including Kipling, Lulu Guinness, Yong Kim and Birkenstock, plus two great TSVs, Antthony Designs on Friday and Ronni Nicole on Saturday – if the weather is miserable in your part of the UK stay in and let us cheer you up.
Fashion is one of my favourite things to present at QVC, along with jewellery and beauty. I had a little knowledge about fashion and dressmaking when I started at QVC in 1993 (well done to all of you who answered correctly in last week's competition) but I had no idea about professional salon skincare ranges until I met our beauty expert Alison Young. I always remember her coming into my dressing room when I had only known her a few weeks, and going through my skincare cupboard… she put most of it in the bin!
I have always been grateful to her for her advice but never more so than when my skin went through a hissy fit in 2009 and she was on hand to help me through it. The whole distressing episode is chapter 53 in my book, my age when it happened, but here is just a small extract.
"By this time, the red raised skin was almost covering my entire face and neck, and I was embarrassed to be seen out in public.
I remember getting on the early morning easyJet flight to Alicante on the 3rd of January feeling tearful and pulling my hair around my face to hide it. It was meant to be a five-day break but almost immediately I knew we had made a mistake as, far from helping my skin, the warm January Spanish sun just made it itchier.
I couldn't sleep at all and spent most of the night sitting watching television, to try and take my mind off my skin, and crying. The next morning I begged Chris to take me home."
What Alison says: "When Julia came to me with her skincare concerns, I went through a thorough consultation with her and we looked at what skincare and make-up products she was currently using and what ingredients were in all of them to see what might be causing the irritation and sensitivity – and she's right, some of them did have to go in the bin!
These products might have been good for her in the past but something was causing her problems! The best thing for her was to strip her routine right back – sometimes right down to a single oil application and I then gave her more products to use with only very simple ingredients in them."
As I mentioned last week, I'll be revealing a different extract each week until the book launches on air at the beginning of March – and it's now available on Advanced Order online (image coming soon). But now time to announce the winner of last week's competition… it's Julia Jenkins from Llanelli in Wales – congrats! I will be sending you your prize at the beginning of March. For everyone else, here's your second chance to win a personally signed copy.
Simply answer the following question: What brand is Julia's favourite hand cream?
To enter, email your answer with your full name and address to email@example.com before next Thursday (21st). We won't be able to publish any answers that get posted here or they will give the answer away! I will reveal the winner next Friday in my blog and the winning prizes will all be sent out at the beginning of March when the stock is delivered to our warehouse. Good luck!
Read the full terms and conditions here