You can take the girl out of Glenfield - and put her in Paris, say, or Bordeaux - but you can't take the Glenfield out of the girl. Not if the girl is Rachel Hunter and, in the context of Rachel Hunter's Tour of Beauty (TV One, Wednesdays, 8pm) this is a good thing.

It's also a good gig. She gets to travel the world, making her own perfume, getting massaged with grape pips - "I feel like a salad dressing" - having her hair done, being a bit cheeky and a bit - but not too - deep on matters of beauty.

In the first episode she went in search of the French secret to style. Why are French women so chic and thin when they eat all that cheese and steak frites and drink wine with lunch? I thought we knew the answer to that and, as it turns out, we do: Moderation. I seem to remember that there was an entire book on this subject of why French women don't get fat which amounted to never eating a whole banana, and eating the allocated half a banana with a knife and fork - which you cannot imagine a girl from Glenfield doing.

She had lunch - steak frites, red wine - with a thin, chic French woman who said, with thin and chic Gallic scorn: "French women just eat less." They have just the one glass of wine and it must be red. "It's 'ealthy," said the French woman who did not appear to be shovelling those steak frites (which must be the French equivalent of chicken tikka masala) down her thin throat. She probably ate half a frite, with a knife and fork.


There was an interview with a 70-something model, who returned to modelling many years after having a family. She said: "I leave the house, the husband. I leave everything. I was angry. I take my bag. I put on mascara. I go to see an agent."

She is now a very successful 70-something model. She had lovely long grey hair and lovely skin, enthused Rachel. How did she do it? She said, with thin and Gallic scorn: "There are many fat people. If you eat too much, you get fat." And, er, she was a model. But she was beautiful on the inside too, which is where it counts.

Beauty, mused Rachel, "runs much deeper than people think". Really? I'd like to have seen an interview with a fat old French woman who was beautiful on the inside and ate steak frites for breakfast, lunch and dinner, and put away a bottle of red a day and was still considered beautiful, on the inside, by those thin, chic French women.

Rachel went to a men's only spa which has been a roaring success. This ought to have come as no surprise. French men are far far vainer than French women -- an observation based on extensive research (mine) of watching them watch themselves (and do their hair) in windows of Paris.

Rachel went shopping for some French style. She emerged wearing a trench coat and boots and a short skirt and a scarf. She looked very chic and not a bit like a girl from Glenfield.

She got on her push bike (very chic) and met a French bulldog. It went: Yap, yap, yap.

"Hmm," she said. "Maybe it didn't like my style." I do. She's funny and warm and somehow has managed to remain untarnished by slickness (except when she's being made into salad dressing.) I'm not expecting to discover the secret of beauty. I already know the answer to that: Don't eat those frites.