Hellosie, it’s Maisie. Whether you are the rebellious type or the charismatic thrill-seeking sort, this test will reveal what sort of ‘cool’ you are?


Are you as cool as a cucumber? Or as naff as a 50-year-old using slang from the 1990s? To find out, simply tick off each of the personality traits you think you possess on each of the lists below.

List A

Thrill-seeking; unconventional; hedonistic (eg partying, self-indulgence); pro-social values (eg caring, unselfish); driven for success; friendly; competent; charismatic; attractive; confident; trendy; warm.

List B

Rebellious; ironic; rough; aloof; anti-social values (eg selfish).

So, are you cool? And, if so, what type of cool? If you ticked mostly traits on List A, then you have what coolness researchers, call cachet-cool. This is the type of cool enjoyed by the popular, conventionally attractive kids. If you ticked mostly items on List B, you have contrarian-cool. This is enjoyed by the tough rebels who eschew sports in favour of smoking behind the bike sheds.

If you’re very attractive, you’ll be perceived as cool (that’s cachet-cool), whatever you do. If not, you’ll have to work harder, for example by being friendly and partying extra hard. If you want to go the contrarian-cool route but are not naturally rebellious, you’ll need to dial up the irony and the rough demeanour – and never use the word “cool”.


Hellosie, it’s Maisie. A cosmetics company is offering women more than one orgasm. Read me to find out.


Tom Ford’s new perfume is Fucking Fabulous – at least that’s what it’s called. Ford announced his latest fragrance during New York fashion week, and the name alone has caused a stir, with descriptions ranging from “racy” to “obscene”. Certainly, it’s a gear change for the designer, who has previously favoured more literal fragrance names – Tobacco Vanille, Tuscan Leather, Venetian Bergamot – but, in the increasingly risque world of cosmetics monikers, it is unlikely to raise eyebrows for long.

Cosmetics’ names were once chosen for sentimental, rather than shock, value. Chanel’s numbered fragrance line marked dates including her birthday (No 19) for example, and Dolce & Gabbana’s Sophia Loren No 1 lipstick was released to commemorate the actor’s 81st birthday. Meanwhile, Nars’s Jungle Red lip and nail colour reference the nail polish from 1939’s The Women (a film that memorably featured not a single man).

Yet Nars is far better known for Orgasm – a blush colour that managed to overshadow the likes of Threesome, Sex Appeal and, sadly, Mata Hari, in what is a relatively risque range – rivalled perhaps only by (the pigmentally similar) Deep Throat. This year, the brand launched an entire Orgasm collection off the back of its popularity. (Tagline: “Have more than one.”)

“François [Nars, Nars’s founder and creative director] has always wanted to give the products an identity and character,” says Magalie Parksuwan, senior vice-president of marketing at the company. “He wants people to remember the names and to provoke.”

The high street has embraced provocative and “rude” cosmetics, with brands such as Soap & Glory marketing innuendo-laden products, from Sexy Mother Pucker lip shine to Glow Job tinted foundation. Too Faced’s Boudoir Eyes palette skipped the puns entirely, with shadows titled Fuzzy Handcuffs and French Tickler, while the brand’s Better Than Sex mascara proved so popular that it inspired a line of shoes.

Unsurprisingly, the ever “edgy” Urban Decay has its own selection of suggestive cosmetics, including a blusher in Fetish (a name shared with a lipstick by Mac) and a lip gloss in Rule 34 (Google it). Illamasqua takes a more straightforward approach, with a rubber-finish nail varnish in Kink and an eye shadow simply called Sex. But can raunch-based retail really seduce potential customers? “It definitely has an impact,” says Parksuwan, “[but] there’s more to the success of a product than just that.”

When Kylie Jenner, something of a bellwether for millennial makeup trends, released her blush collection in March, she ditched the sentimental nomenclature of her Lip Kits (Mary Jo K was a tribute to her grandmother and Dolce K was named after, er, the family dog) for vastly more provocative names including X-Rated, Virginity and Hot and Bothered. But it was her rosy pink Barely Legal which proved most controversial – sparking a similar backlash to that prompted by Kat Von D’s Underage Red lipstick in 2015.

Even so, an Instagram search for #kyliecosmetics conjures more than two million posts – many of them photos of the products themselves; fully packaged, lascivious labels neatly aligned – which perhaps goes some way to explaining why suggestive stickers, no longer sheepishly consigned to the base of nail varnish pots, proliferate. “Names help to create a story and elicit a reaction [online],” says Parksuwan. And, given the epicurean competition, who would want to be #beige?

That said, the chance to be immortalised in makeup may not yet be dead. Last week, Ford also expanded his Lips & Boys collection, which now features 100 lipsticks – each named after one of the designer’s closest friends.

Hellosie, it’s Maisie. So it’s time to up your earring game – and the bigger the better. What you need to know.


A naked earlobe now is like leaving your mobile at home – an all-day type of fail. Earrings – once the garnish of an outfit – are now the main course, or make that the dessert you get to skip straight to. To be clear, we’re not talking about an inoffensive stud that would pass a dress-code test in the City. The earrings that matter now are the kind that start conversations. Get used to lobe ache as normal service.

For examples of conversation earrings, you could check out the catwalk – beetles at Gucci, twig-like strands at Louis Vuitton, triangular at Céline, red and squiggly at Emporio Armani. But, crucially, they are also appearing on the front row, fashion’s petri dish of trends. Look at the catwalk and think “fantasy”. Look at the women in the front row – the ones that, in theory anyway, also have real jobs, play-date schedules and WhatsApp dinner groups to manage – and it’s that little bit more relatable.

The players here are all upping their earring game. Yasmin Sewell, the new vice-president of style and creative at e-tailer Farfetch, has some delicious olive earrings, and is wearing a great pair of gold zigzag ones in her bio on Instagram. Influencer Pandora Sykes had bright blue beaded numbers that look like something Frida Kahlo might wear. Vogue’s newly appointed publisher Vanessa Kingori has a nice line in classy-looking crystal earrings, while Caroline de Maigret’s topaz ones at Chanel were dreamy.

Earrings are, of course, Instagram catnip. Tilly Macalister-Smith, an ex-Vogue staffer now based in New York, started her Instagram account Ear After Ear in 2016 to document fashion’s rediscovery of the earring. It may sound niche, but it’s actually engrossing – and increasingly required – viewing.

The emergence of earrings as big news again in fashion was kickstarted last year with huge hoops at Céline and the “face” earrings at JW Anderson. For SS18, they were at Topshop and Burberry – the diamante single earrings are already on wishlists even if they’re not available until next year. But they have had other fashion moments: if the 60s were a golden age of the earring, the 80s were a highpoint, too: with Pat Butcher’s gobstoppers and Joan Collins’ crystal numbers ruling teatime telly, that was the last time big earrings were, well, this big. We’re now in the third age of the earring.

Ruby Chadwick, a jewellery buyer at Liberty, says earrings make up 30% of the department’s sales, up on the previous year. She explains that this comes from reframing the idea of statement earrings – and the realisation that bigger face furniture means the opportunity to dial down the outfit effort. “It’s a definite way to dress an outfit up without being too much,” she says. “In winter it’s a great add-on to a jumper and boots that we all go to.”

One of the most popular brands is Mounser, which produces sculptural earrings in silver and gold that fall just above the shoulder. “People are being a lot braver with things,” says Chadwick. “It [the earring trend] has become a lot more entrenched, a lot more people are doing it so it doesn’t feel so unusual.”

Indeed, Ivanka Trump is doing statement earrings, but even that hasn’t managed to put fashionable people off yet. To subtly distance yourself from a Trumpian White House look, however, just make sure your earrings are never combined with a blowdry.

To do woke earrings, the choices are a messy-hair-don’t-care situation (see Mica Argañaraz at Saint Laurent), or pared-back with short hair (Lineisy Montero at Burberry) or a simple ponytail . “I am loving hair really pared back with an amazing earring that does the talking,” says Chadwick. Also go minimal with the makeup: “I think instead of a lipstick, people are leading with an earring.”

Colour is also something to consider. Chadwick recommends doing a Colour Me Beautiful on your own wardrobe: the colours that suit you in clothing will probably do the same when transferred to your jewellery box. I love a big earring and have four pairs of hot pink ones – as someone with dark hair, dark eyes and olive skin, bright pink suits me.

Ruby Chadwick recommends yellow gold as a shade that suits pretty much everyone. I would add that a pair of yellow gold hoops are the universal entry-level earring. Mine have a 4cm drop and are beveled to add a bit of extra sparkle.

Try those out for size, but be warned – the earring game can be addictive. It will only be a matter of time before you’re wearing proper conversation-starters.

Hellosie, it’s Maisie. The clothing item beloved by obsessive pedallers but much maligned by everyone else, has received a high-end makeover from Kendall Jenner, Bella Hadid and Dior. Find out more.


Ah, yes. I think I’ve seen these. Are they the things I get stuck behind whenever I drive uphill on a sunny Saturday? That’s right. Cycling shorts are tight, stretchy leg coverings that stop above the knee and often contain the bottom, thighs and genitals of an obsessive pedaller.

Oh, believe me, I can see exactly what they contain. I have to stare at them for hours while I wait to overtake. My sympathies.

But it is practical to wear them for a long bike ride, I suppose. Absolutely. They are aerodynamic and allow your legs to move freely while you exercise. And they keep you relatively warm and dry.

I achieve the same effect by placing myself inside some kind of building, such as a house or pub. Each to their own. But, of course, cycling shorts are at the cutting edge of fashion.

No, they’re not. Oh yes, they are. Black cycling shorts were part of Dior’s and Dolce & Gabbana’s latest catwalk shows. Both Kendall Jenner and Bella Hadid have recently been seen wearing them.

While pedalling up Ditchling Beacon? No. While prancing about being famous.

Did they have those padded bottoms? The shorts?

Yes. I don’t believe so. These are designer shorts, remember, from labels such as Vatanika. Think of them more as cut-off leggings.

OK. And they don’t absolutely have to be black. Naomi Campbell wore white ones at Off-White’s catwalk show in Paris.

So, what will become fashionable next? Metal clips on the soles of high heels? Weird, creepy goggles? A water bottle strapped to your clutch bag? Puncture repair kits? I doubt it. This trend is more about the skin-tight silhouette than any great devotion to cycling. It’s not as if fashion models and competitive cyclists have much in common, after all.

Apart, of course, from a reputed fondness for leg-shaving? Yes. Apart from that.

Do say: “Bringing together the luxuriant shine of kangaroo leather and the punk aesthetic of detachable metal studs, football boots are the perfect choice to finish any weekend outfit with éclat.”

Don’t say: “Accessorise with shin pads.”

Hellosie, it’s Maisie, Are women’s rights going backwards? This is what you need to know.


When modern women are finally fitted with their regulation compulsory chastity belts, dare one dream that they’ll come in a range of pretty colours, delightful materials and snazzy designs? Or would it just be the old-school medieval iron trad models? Hey, little ladies, do you think we’d be allowed to choose?

I muse facetiously because, in the US, President Trump has issued a ruling that makes it far easier for companies and insurers to opt out of providing free birth control to employees on the grounds of religious and moral beliefs, rolling back a key feature of Obamacare. Now that it will become easier to opt out, many more will do so, with the potential to affect 55 million women. The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) and the National Women’s Law Center have announced that they will sue the government over the decision.

Obamacare provisions also covered treatment for gynaecological conditions such as endometriosis and polycystic ovarian syndrome. Now, many women will be worried about being able to afford such treatments. However, these unfortunate women probably just count as collateral damage. Apart from the huge amount of money that big business will save, the real target here is sexual autonomy, doubtless all sexual autonomy, but specifically the female kind that a certain mindset has long wanted to control.

Contraception, though imperfect, was one of the chief liberators of women, taking much of the fear out of sex. Thus, this removal of free birth control could only be about putting the fear back into sex. At the least, putting an end to the corporate bankrolling of the more liberal, humanist, proactive and protective approaches to sex.

It should come as no surprise that among the reasons cited for the change were findings that access to contraception incited “risky sexual behaviour”. Eh? One would have thought that reduced access to contraception was far riskier and that, for both sexes, access to barrier contraception would be the least “risky” of all?

The lesson seems to be that it will never be over – there will always be laws that need to be updated and protected

However, even thinking like this is to participate in the delusion that this is about people enjoying themselves safely. Take away the figleaf of social responsibility and this becomes about stopping people being able to enjoy sex when they want, with whom they want, without fear of the consequences of unwanted pregnancy. And when I say “people”, I mainly mean women.

Not that things are so peachy for reproductive rights back in Europe. Even as an Irish abortion reform referendum is under discussion for next year, a poll has revealed that only 24% of Irish people are in favour of legalising terminations in nearly all cases. Meanwhile, Prof Lesley Regan, the president of the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists, has argued that parts of the 1967 Abortion Act are outdated and that women need faster, safer access to abortion, without the need for the approval of two separate doctors – thus far to no avail. The lesson seems to be that it will never be over – there will always be laws that need to be updated and, when appropriate, protected. Where the Trump contraceptive ruling is concerned, it’s scary enough that it’s such a backward step – yet scarier that it has been so slyly done.

It’s an example of how a quite subtle shifting of legislative emphasis – simply making something easy (the opt-out) that had previously been difficult – could be enough to undermine, or even destroy, major sociopolitical progress, with far-reaching repercussions for women. The imminence of chastity belts or not, this appears to be an era when there’s a real need for women to stay alert – when hard-fought gains could be eroded in an instant with the quiet swish of a departmental pen.

Hellosie, it’s Maisie. Stress and social media fuel mental health crisis for young women.


Girls and young women are experiencing a “gathering crisis” in their mental health linked to conflict with friends, fears about their body image and pressures created by social media, experts have warned.

Rates of stress, anxiety and depression are rising sharply among teenage girls in what mental health specialists say is a “deeply worrying” trend that is far less pronounced among boys of the same age. They warn that the NHS lacks the resources to adequately tackle the problem.

The number of times a girl aged 17 or under has been admitted to hospital in England because of self-harm has jumped from 10,500 to more than 17,500 a year over the past decade – a rise of 68%. The jump among boys was much lower: 26%.

Cases of self-poisoning among girls – ingesting pills, alcohol or other chemical substances – rose 50%, from 9,700 to 14,600 between 2005-06 and 2015-16. Similarly, the number of girls treated in hospital after cutting themselves quadrupled, from 600 to 2,400 over the same period, NHS Digital figures show.

Rising levels of “body dissatisfaction” – insecurity and low self-esteem about their appearance – have been identified as driving the unprecedented levels of mental turmoil in young women.

Increasing numbers of academic studies are finding that mental health problems have been soaring among girls over the past 10 – and in particular 5 – years, coinciding with the period in which young people’s use of social media has exploded.

Government-funded research last week showed that one in four (24%) girls aged 14, and 9% of boys the same age in the UK are beset by such negative emotions – including loneliness, self-hatred and feeling unloved – that they are depressed. That was double the 12% rate of depression seen in girls, and 5.5% in boys, a decade earlier.

The mounting evidence of low self-esteem among British girls reflects a trend in many other countries in recent years of more and more young females suffering from anxiety and depression.

Girls aged 11, 12 and 13 displayed a “gender-specific vulnerability”, triggered by the onset of puberty, which made them much more likely to worry, sometimes intensely, about their appearance around the time they started secondary school.

Body dissatisfaction is seen in about 10% of girls at primary school but really jumps in early adolescence, as puberty is starting. During this period girls tend to self-objectify more than boys, experience more teasing around weight and shape and perceive more pressure from friends and family to be thin.

About half of 15-year-old girls in England and Scotland and a quarter of boys the same age think they are too fat, the World Health Organization found last year.

Social media such as Snapchat and Instagram “can be damaging and even destructive” to girls’ mental wellbeing. There’s a pressure for young people to be involved 24/7 and keep up with their peer group or they will be left out and socially excluded.

Use of social media was also contributing to a growing culture of sleep deprivation among young people, which could both be a symptom of mental illness and also increase the risk of one developing, including depression, she added.

Girls’ tendency to worry more than boys, and their greater sensitivity to criticism have also been pinpointed as potential triggers for distress.

Girls do have a tendency to ruminate – to worry extensively – more than boys about things of concern, like their friendships, their appearance and fallouts, often in groups. This worrying is a risk factor for depression and may help explain the high prevalence of depression in 14-year-olds.

Hellosie, it’s Maisie. Cowardly People with their Terrorism come to London again this morning. Cynical and inhuman criminals.


A terrorist incident has been declared by the Met at Parsons Green underground station in west London after an explosion on a tube carriage.

The Metropolitan and British Transport Police forces, including armed officers, are at the scene, along with the London ambulance service.

The Met’s assistant commissioner Mark Rowley said a suspected improvised explosive device (IED) was thought to be responsible for the blast. He refused to say whether anyone had been arrested.

Police sources said the device only partially exploded. Initial examination by explosives experts have led them to conclude it was “viable”, meaning it was meant to explode more fully.

Scotland Yard’s counter-terrorism command, SO15, has taken the lead in the investigation, supported by MI5. The inquiry into the explosion was initially led by British Transport Police.

St Mary’s hospital in Paddington has declared a major incident, and there have been reports of people sustaining burn injuries.

The LAS said it had taken 18 patients to a number of London hospitals. “None are thought to be in a serious or life-threatening condition,” a statement said.

Another passenger, named only as Lucas, said: “I heard a really loud explosion – when I looked back there appeared to be a bag but I don’t know if it’s associated with it. I saw people with minor injuries, burnings to the face, arms, legs, multiple casualties in that way. People were helping each other.”

Another passenger said: “I have just seen a woman who was just stretchered off here and clearly her legs are wrapped up and she has burns. She had burns to her face – she’s conscious, she was taking oxygen and pain relief as well. She seemed to have burns all over her body from top to toe.”

The “device” in the last carriage. “It was a white bucket, a builder’s bucket, in a white Aldi bag or Lidl bag.

Police have advised people to avoid the area and a 100-metre cordon has been erected around the station.

The London fire brigade said it had six fire engines, two fire rescue units and about 50 firefighters from Fulham, Wandsworth, Chelsea, Hammersmith and other surrounding fire stations at the scene.

A Transport for London spokeswoman said the District line had been suspended between Earl’s Court and Wimbledon.

Downing Street said the prime minister, Theresa May, was to chair a meeting of the government’s Cobra emergency committee on Friday afternoon to discuss the incident. In a statement, May said: “My thoughts are with those injured at Parsons Green and the emergency services who, once again, are responding swiftly and bravely to a suspected terrorist incident.”

My thoughts; Again, this is not a difference of emphasis between us or them. To suggest that there’s something about me and about my beliefs here in a western society is something I won’t hear said and you shouldn’t believe or support the murderous attitude supported by just bad people hiding behind a religion. If they weren’t doing that they probably be robbing banks saying it was some just socialist cause.