A fair Irish colleen with a beautiful tale...

She really is a colleen, too - Colleen Harte, holistic therapist and clinical aromatherapist, and founder of the Lucy Annabella Organics range.  (Named after the 'pet' name her grandfather gave to Colleen.)  Jo met this Irish beauty recently on one of her flying visits to London, and is hugely taken with Colleen's range - amazing smells, wonderful textures, and you really do get a sense of her philosophy:  that 'every product is created, blended and bottled with love.' We thoroughly recommend that you explore the range at www.lucyannabella.com.  But meanwhile, at this rather frenzied time of year, we also asked Colleen - a.k.a. Lucy Annabella - to share some of her beauty wisdom with us, and explain her philosophy.  So do what she says:  breathe.  And read on.

What's the No. 1 thing women can do for their skin? Water -  there is not better skin treatment than the hydration of lots of fresh water to cleanse and bring back the natural glow.

Why is natural beauty important to you? Nature's beauty is the only beauty to consider for me.  Natural ingredients treat our skin with such love and most importantly they do not cause stress to our skin cells with harmful chemical which our bodies struggle to cope with.  I believe we should treat our skin and bodies how nature intended - naturally!

What's your favourite 'magic' natural ingredient? I adore essential oils but at the minute it is a magic wild vegetable oil that I am in love with.  Camellia Japonica oil is rich in antioxidant vitamin E antioxidant and it's anti-inflammatory, perfect to protecting and healing our skin.

Which is your favourite, of your own products? Our 100% organic Argan & Bergamot Treatment Oil is my favourite currently - although this changes often.  I love awakening knowing that after my shower I get to wrap myself in the fresh but gentle scent of the bergamot, lemon, cypress and lavender.  It feels great to know I am giving my skin the best protection and hydration every morning.  It is the best way to start my day!

As a natural therapist yourself, can you share a quick treatment women can do at home, to themselves...?

The best home treatment is a soak and a scrub!  Soak in a long hot bath, add six drops of your favourite organic essential oils and mix some brown sugar with a vegetable oil you like, any in the kitchen cupboard will do but I like rapeseed or hemp oil.  Mix the sugar and oil in a bowl and add two drops of essential oil if you like and exfoliate your body naturally. Quick, smooth and brilliant!

And a foolproof way (breathing, acupressure etc.) to relax, as we head towards Christmas? Christmas preparation can be manic but nothing works better for me than taking a minute just to breathe.  When busy or stressed it is the easiest thing to forget but the simplest exercise to bring you back to earth.  Take deep inhalations through your mouth, hold for a few seconds and slowly exhale, always ensure to use your entire lungs in order to get fresh oxygen into your lower lungs which we sometimes can be guilty of neglecting.