Between the hair, make-up and nails, you’re a beauty fanatic. Who inspired you growing up?

‘My mum is very glamorous. She has a low tolerance for people who don’t make an effort. She will walk into a room and say to a woman, “You have tits. Why you not show the tits?” That’s how she talks – she’s from Albania. I’m like, “Mum, are you insane?” But she’s all about appearance, forever kicking me, telling me to stand up straight.’


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When did you first go blonde?

‘I was only 14, which is why my hair is so short and damaged now! I’ve been using this treatment for blondes called Olaplex that’s gradually repaired my hair. ‘It’s a hardcore treatment that really fixes your hair - proper save-your-life stuff. When I was a teen, all my idols were blonde – Marilyn Monroe, Debbie Harry, Gwen Stefani – so it’s always been my thing. I wasn’t very girlie, and I felt that going blonde made me seem more womanly. I got addicted, and then I discovered red lipstick. You can have no make-up on, add a red lip, and it looks like you’ve put in some effort. Rimmel’s Oh My Gloss!, £5.49, is easy to apply, and it’s super-moisturising.’’

You’re not afraid of hair extensions…

‘Some people feel really weird talking about hair extensions, but the reality is your hair can’t grow overnight, so why not get creative. The trick is, you have to completely own it, and that’s a confidence thing.’


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Nobody would describe your look as conservative. Have you always pushed the envelope? 

‘I grew up in a very free environment, near Portobello Market in London. It’s more bougie now, but there were all these cool people, so creativity was always around me. You could buy stuff for cheap, like £2, and just play around. My parents thought I looked crazy, but they were always comfortable letting me do me.’ 


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Rita’s must-haves

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‘Candles make me feel like I’m at home even when I’m not. The woody Le Labo Santal, £51, scent is my favourite. I use my Clarisonic, £155, every day, and it gets my face nice and clean. It works anywhere – even in the shower. Rimmel London 24HR Supercurler Mascara, £6.99, makes you look like you have lash extensions, and I don’t really have that many lashes! I always like things that illuminate my face. Becca Shimmering Skin Perfector, £34, has a creamy texture and shimmer particles to give a nice glow.’