If only EVERY woman was able to give birth like the French: As new UK mothers are targeted by incontinence ads, a writer who’s had postnatal care on both sides of the Channel reveals the difference
23rd September 2019
DAILY MAIL 7 AUGUST 2019 – When my husband and I moved to France in 2000 with our one-year-old daughter, Olivia, I learned an awful lot about the cultural differences between our two countries from my new mum friends. Not only, it appears, do French wo …
A very French village affair
17th April 2015
News reaches me that Swedes recycle 99 per cent of their rubbish. Never one to be outdone by my compatriots, I am recycling this column first published in the Sunday Times. You will be pleased to hear that since this exciting episode things have calmed …
5th August 2013
As I dropped Leo off this morning at the hallowed Chelsea training ground in Cobham I was more than usually relived. It is always a joy dropping him off at any sporting venue, but this was particularly poignant because only a few days ago he was lying …
The French role model (again)
5th February 2013
Just after Christmas we went to a party at the home of a French family we are quite friendly with. Like us, they have three children aged between nine and 13. Unlike us, these children look and behave like they have leapt straight from the pages of a ‘ …
15th June 2011
This morning as I was battling on the exercise bike, I watched a brilliant programme on the French channel Arte about the feminst group ‘Ni Putes, Ni Soumises’ (not whores, nor submissives). Obviously as it was all in French I hardly understood any of …
A French experience
6th May 2009
Yesterday was a busy day. In between checking my amazon rating, I interviewed Christine Ockrent, who is Belgian but one of those women you always think of as French because she made her career there. She was, among other notable things, France’s first …
A French Education
16th February 2008
This week I felt the full force of the French educational system. Olivia had some homework about the origins of the French flag, Marianne and other French national symbols. If I had been a contestant on ‘Who wants to be a millionaire’ I would have been …
Helena Frith Powell was born in Sweden to a Swedish mother and Italian father, but grew up mainly in England. She is the author of eleven books, translated into several languages including Chinese and Russian. She wrote the French Mistress column The Sunday Times about life in France for several years. She is a regular contributor to the Daily Mail, Mail on Sunday, The Times, Daily Telegraph, Tatler Magazine and Harper’s Bazaar.
Helena has been the editor of four magazines, including M Magazine, a supplement for the Abu Dhabi based National Newspaper and FIVE, a high-end fashion glossy, also published in Abu Dhabi. Helena was also editor in chief of 360 Life, a quarterly glossy magazine published with the Sports 360 Newspaper in Dubai, part of the Chalhoub Group. She writes a beauty blog www.beautyorbeast.uk.
Her third novel, The Arnolfini Marriage, based on a romance that evolves around a van Eyck masterpiece came out in 2016. As well as contributing regularly for newspapers and magazines, writing short stories and studying for a Masters in Creative Writing at the University of Cambridge, Helena is also working on a thriller called Welcome to Smullö that will be published in spring 2020.
Her latest non-fiction work Smart Women Don’t Get Wrinkles came out in hardback in 2016 and came out in paperback in April 2018.
Helena was educated at Durham University and lived in the Languedoc region of France for eight years, where the family still have a home. She lives between there and London with her husband Rupert and their three children.