Life and Style

Harsh winter light can throw dehydrated skin and under-eye bags in to sharp relief – a subtly shimmering highlighter is the best way to mask a multitude of sins...

Gucci? No, darling, it's Oxfam

Knowing where - and how - to shop is the key to stylish dressing. And we're not talking Bond Street, says Melanie Rickey

Fashion: Geek chic

The pot-bellied, the asexual, the weird and - at Yves Saint Laurent, at least - the wonderful all appeared at the menswear shows in Paris.

Fashion: The Style Police - For pretty's sake

In spring, a young fashion designer's thoughts turn to florals and lace and other potentially twee things. Restrain yourself, advises James Sherwood

Sanofi talks to potential bidders

Sanofi talks to potential bidders

Fashion: He's a star, and he's no dummy

The man who makes the shoppers stop and stare on New York's Fifth Avenue started out on the other side of the glass - with his nose pressed up against the windows of John Lewis. There's fame in store for Simon Doonan, says Tamsin Blanchard

Yves Saint Laurent: Where art and fashion collide

Richard Gluckman is rapidly building a reputation as one of New York's foremost architects, with a host of interiors for art galleries and fashion stores. His latest project is a combination of the two, a menswear boutique for Yves Saint Laurent that will showcase the work of young artists. By Ian Phillips. Photographs by James Rexroad

THE HISTORY OF... THE MAXI SKIRT: Down to the ground

THE RUNNING joke in fashion is how often skirt lengths change. The maxi skirt - one that is slightly fitted, full and reaches down to the ground - comes in and out of fashion from time to time and is currently a hot favourite with designers Calvin Klein, Gucci, Narciso Rodriguez and Clements Ribeiro, to name but a few.

McCartney opts for pulling power

BILL CLINTON'S words boomed around the public address system at the Paris Bourse: "It was not a sexual relationship." The bourse was the grand venue for Stella McCartney's third collection for the French house Chloe.

Fashion: Going to the dogs

On the street; You can bet a pony it's smart dress for a night at Walthamstow race track. Melanie Rickey has a flutter with Mrs Chandler and friends

Analysts scrutinise Marchpole

THE CREDIBILITY of Marchpole, the retail group which designs and distributes Yves Saint Laurent menswear, was being questioned by City analysts yesterday after the group reported profits far below expectations.

Fashion: The history of... The Mary Jane shoe: Called to the bar

BUTTON your shoe, girls. The most directional style for autumn/winter 1998/99 is the Mary Jane, this time in a flat, pointy-toed incarnation. What defines this dainty style is the "bar" - a single-buttoned strap across the top of the foot which dates back to the turn of the century. The name comes from the shoes worn by Mary Jane, a character from the Buster Brown comic strip (drawn by R F Outcault) which first appeared in the New York Herald in 1902. Little girls everywhere clamoured for them, and until the late Fifties they were a must-have style for both boys and girls.

Angel eyes

Cleanse, tone, moisturize

Preview: see african fashion

"Absolutely fabulous," enthused South Africa's Cosmopolitan magazine of haute-couture designers Buckton Du Toit. Featuring simple yet sensuous designs , exquisitely finished with pearls, silks and lace, their collections are fast gaining fans outside their native South Africa. Judge for yourself at Whiteleys tonight, when their creations - along with those of other leading African designers - will be paraded by some of fashion's hottest properties, including Pumla (right), and Yves Saint Laurent's favourite model, Waris Darie. The fashion show, part of the "Africa at Whiteleys" festival, will be in aid of the UN's campaign against female circumcision, a cause for which the Somalian Darie is an ardent ambassador. And, while feasting your eyes on the finest haute-couture Africa has to offer, you can ease your conscience with the knowledge that you're raising the profile of the unkindest cut of all.

The city boys in blue

In an effort to stand out at work, men have adopted brighter shirts. Only trouble is, everyone's at it, says Hannah Hunter

According to an England smokesman...

THERE was one day last week when the sending-arms-to-Sierra-Leone controversy drew only marginally more flak than Glenn Hoddle's public avowal that he would take Paul Gascoigne to the World Cup despite the revelation that he puffs his way through 20 cigarettes a day.
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Day In a Page

Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – MS Swiss Corona - seven nights from £999pp
Lake Maggiore, Orta and the Matterhorn – seven nights from £899pp
Sicily – seven nights from £939pp
Pompeii, Capri and the Bay of Naples - seven nights from £799pp
Istanbul Ephesus & Troy – six nights from £859pp
Mary Rose – two nights from £319pp
Israel-Gaza conflict: No victory for Israel despite weeks of death and devastation

Robert Fisk: No victory for Israel despite weeks of devastation

Palestinians have won: they are still in Gaza, and Hamas is still there
Mary Beard writes character reference for Twitter troll who called her a 'slut'

Unlikely friends: Mary Beard and the troll who called her a ‘filthy old slut’

The Cambridge University classicist even wrote the student a character reference
America’s new apartheid: Prosperous white districts are choosing to break away from black cities and go it alone

America’s new apartheid

Prosperous white districts are choosing to break away from black cities and go it alone
Amazon is buying Twitch for £600m - but why do people want to watch others playing Xbox?

What is the appeal of Twitch?

Amazon is buying the video-game-themed online streaming site for £600m - but why do people want to watch others playing Xbox?
Tip-tapping typewriters, ripe pongs and slides in the office: Bosses are inventing surprising ways of making us work harder

How bosses are making us work harder

As it is revealed that one newspaper office pumps out the sound of typewriters to increase productivity, Gillian Orr explores the other devices designed to motivate staff
Manufacturers are struggling to keep up with the resurgence in vinyl records

Hard pressed: Resurgence in vinyl records

As the resurgence in vinyl records continues, manufacturers and their outdated machinery are struggling to keep up with the demand
Tony Jordan: 'I turned down the chance to research Charles Dickens for a TV series nine times ... then I found a kindred spirit'

A tale of two writers

Offered the chance to research Charles Dickens for a TV series, Tony Jordan turned it down. Nine times. The man behind EastEnders and Life on Mars didn’t feel right for the job. Finally, he gave in - and found an unexpected kindred spirit
Could a later start to the school day be the most useful educational reform of all?

Should pupils get a lie in?

Doctors want a later start to the school day so that pupils can sleep later. Not because teenagers are lazy, explains Simon Usborne - it's all down to their circadian rhythms
Prepare for Jewish jokes – as Jewish comedians get their own festival

Prepare for Jewish jokes...

... as Jewish comedians get their own festival
SJ Watson: 'I still can't quite believe that Before I Go to Sleep started in my head'

A dream come true for SJ Watson

Watson was working part time in the NHS when his debut novel, Before I Go to Sleep, became a bestseller. Now it's a Hollywood movie, too. Here he recalls the whirlwind journey from children’s ward to A-list film set
10 best cycling bags for commuters

10 best cycling bags for commuters

Gear up for next week’s National Cycle to Work day with one of these practical backpacks and messenger bags
Paul Scholes: Three at the back isn’t working yet but given time I’m hopeful Louis van Gaal can rebuild Manchester United

Paul Scholes column

Three at the back isn’t working yet but given time I’m hopeful Louis van Gaal can rebuild Manchester United
Kate Bush, Hammersmith Apollo music review: A preamble, then a coup de théâtre - and suddenly the long wait felt worth it

Kate Bush shows a voice untroubled by time

A preamble, then a coup de théâtre - and suddenly the long wait felt worth it
Robot sheepdog technology could be used to save people from burning buildings

The science of herding is cracked

Mathematical model would allow robots to be programmed to control crowds and save people from burning buildings
Tyrant: Is the world ready for a Middle Eastern 'Dallas'?

This tyrant doesn’t rule

It’s billed as a Middle Eastern ‘Dallas’, so why does Fox’s new drama have a white British star?