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Mates, Dates Guide to Life, Love, and Looking Luscious (Mates, Dates Series)

Mates, Dates Guide to Life, Love, and Looking Luscious (Mates, Dates Series)

4.3 72
by Cathy Hopkins

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Time for a lifestyle makeover?
The Mates, Dates girls will show you how!

Four super-tight friends dish their secrets for dealing with life's little dilemmas...
Like boys, for start: what they want, where to find them, how to be a great kisser -- you know, all the really important stuff. Once you snag that dreamy guy, the girls deliver


Time for a lifestyle makeover?
The Mates, Dates girls will show you how!

Four super-tight friends dish their secrets for dealing with life's little dilemmas...
Like boys, for start: what they want, where to find them, how to be a great kisser -- you know, all the really important stuff. Once you snag that dreamy guy, the girls deliver the fashion 411 to keep you looking irresistible! But being a glamour goddess can sometimes get stressful, so there are plenty of tips on how torelax and hang out with your closest friends.
From creating the perfect bedroom, to spicing up your own personal style -- here's an exclusive ticket to a more fabulous you! Just between mates...

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
And for followers of the Mates, Dates series by Cathy Hopkins, readers can follow her Mates, Dates Guide to Life, Love, and Looking Luscious. "Beauty, Health and Fashion"-offering tips on facial masks, hair care and "the essential wardrobe"-is but one of the five sections covered; others give advice on boys, "survival tips" on dealing with siblings and parents, and suggestions on how to relax. Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
The author of the popular Mates, Dates series of novels has compiled a guide that features the characters from her books giving advice. It's mainly Izzie, Lucy, Nesta and TJ pontificating in a breezy fashion, but they do call in the experts, including some parents, a teacher and even an older brother. Teenagers will love these energetic, playful characters giving great tips on everything. Of course, there are a lot of British terms used in this book (e.g., snogging), but fans will be able to determine the meanings from the context. This covers, in great detail, boys, beauty, health, and fashion. There is a particularly useful chapter on surviving school, especially what to do about bullies, how to deal with the "'rents," what to do when you are stuck in sketchy neighborhoods after dark and how to manage the "dosh" (money). There is also an exhilarating chapter on how to have fun, and host non-alcoholic parties, sleepovers and do-it-yourself spa nights. It's a fact-filled book certainly worth the price and sure to appeal to both fans and non-fans, who may become fans after they read the characters' spirited discussions. KLIATT Codes: J—Recommended for junior high school students. 2005, Simon & Schuster, 256p., Ages 12 to 15.
—Sherri Ginsberg

Product Details

Simon Pulse
Publication date:
Mates, Dates Series
Sold by:
Sales rank:
File size:
4 MB
Age Range:
12 - 17 Years

Read an Excerpt

Meeting The One

Some people believe in the romantic notion that somewhere out there is a very special person just for them. The One. Your soul mate. Someone who you'll recognise because you feel at your best with him, and you'll feel you were destined to be with them. We had varying opinions on this, but really it's up to you if you if you choose to believe in "The One" theory or not.

Nesta: Who says you only get One? If you're lucky, you will meet The One, The Two, The Three . . . and so on.

Lucy: Don't put off seeing other boys or waste too much time waiting for The One in case he lives in Outer Mongolia and never travels. If you do meet him, you will know him at once and can take it from there.

Izzie: If it's meant to be, destiny will bring you together in this life as it has in past lives.

TJ: It's all chemical. The One is just a way of saying you fancy someone and your pheromones are mutually attractive.

How to Spot a Rat

Basically, he doesn't phone when he says he will. Is totally unreliable. He lies. He's late. He's vague about what he does when he's not with you. He doesn't listen to you or looks bored or amused when you're pouring out your heart. He cheats. He doesn't respect you.

Don't get involved.

Trouble is, sometimes even the smartest of girls doesn't realize that a boy is a rat until too late. This is because often a rat looks exactly the same as a nice guy. (Both TJ and I got fooled into falling for the same love rat once and he really seemed like a nice guy at first. It almost broke our friendship up until we realized that being mates was more important than being with a boy we couldn't trust.)

As with their body language, sometimes boys are hard to read. Hard to understand. Which brings me to our next section.

So you've got him to notice you. He's got your number. Then what?

The general rule is that if a boy is interested, you don't have to wonder if he'll call or not. He will. In his own time, but he will.

Of course there are exceptions:

1. He's shy.

2. He's lost your number.

3. He put your number in his jeans pocket and those jeans went in the wash.

4. He's lazy.

5. He might fear rejection.

It can be hard for boys to do the all the running and asking for a date can be scary. In which case, you could always ask him. But remember...

  • Pick your time. Ask him when he's on his own as sometimes boys act too cool or embarrassed when with their mates.

  • Give at least a few days' notice—if you ask him out for that night, he may be busy. However, if he is busy but interested, he will probably say something like, "Oh sorry, I can't make tonight, but how about another time?" If turning you down, he won't give an opening for another time or will make an excuse. A genuine excuse is usually backed up with an alternative arrangement.

  • Be cool about it. Don't declare undying love and tell him you've been watching him for weeks. He might think, Whoa! Stalker!

  • Be confident. Don't start your invite by saying, "I don't suppose . . ." Be positive. Say, "Would you like to . . . ?"

  • If you think he might not be ready for a one-to-one date, you could ask him to join you with a bunch of mates. Keep it casual, like there's a bunch of us going to a concert on Saturday, like to join us? Or invite him to a party as you can say we need some extra boys.

  • If he declines and doesn't offer an alternative date, move on.

But say he does call. He asks you out on a date. Fantastic. What then?

Dating: First Dates


Be cool and not too over eager if asked out, but do show that you're pleased.


He: Let's get together some time.

You: (big smile) Sure. Sounds good.

He: How about next Friday?


He: Let's get together some time.

You: Yes. Hold on, I'll get my diary. I'm free tonight or I could come over right now.

He: Um. I'll call you.

  • Be encouraging as it probably took the boy a lot of nerve to get the courage up to ask you. (Unless you're Tony, who is under the impression that all girls are gagging to go out with him. Not all boys are as confident as he is.)

  • Make some effort, but don't go over the top. Dress so that you look good, but are comfortable in what you're wearing—but not too comfortable, like in your pajamas.

  • Offer to pay your way. Usually whoever has asked you on a date should pay the first time, but don't assume. Offer to go "Dutch" and pay your share. He can always refuse to let you.

  • If he pays you a compliment, take it. Say thank you. Don't go into a whole thing about how short/fat/ugly you really are as a) it sounds as though you are dismissing his compliment and b) he might think, Oh yeah, I hadn't noticed before, but you are short/fat/ugly!

  • Keep your conversations light and fun.


  • Take a friend along.

  • Ask questions that are too personal in the beginning—like: Are you still a virgin? And don't make personal comments about his appearance unless it's complimentary—asking if he's always had sticky out ears isn't going to make him feel great, whereas asking where he gets his hair cut as it looks fab, is.

  • Steal his thunder if he's telling you a joke, by saying, "Oh, I've heard this," or finishing the punch-line for him. Let him get it out and laugh. It's his first date too and he's probably a bit nervous.

  • Make him feel bad if he says something dumb as sometimes the wrong thing slips out and you don't want to make him feel totally stupid.

  • Be too early and don't be too late.

Text copyright © 2005 by Cathy Hopkins

Things to Do on a Rainy Day

(Or Sunny. Or Windy.)

We've all worked on this section and decided to start with a bit of redecorating! Your bedroom is your own personal chill-out space—somewhere where you can close the door on the rest of the world, so it's good to make it a place that you really want to spend time in (and where your mates do too at sleepovers).

Redesign Your Bedroom

Step One: Research

Before you start, go to the library to get books on interior design or invest in a couple of magazines that specialise in bedrooms to give you ideas that you hadn't thought about. Work out how much money you can afford to spend and who might be able to help you with the time and labour.

Step Two: Clear Out the Clutter

Take a big bin bag and get rid of old books, scraps of paper, old magazines and clothes that you haven't worn for ages. See if anything is worth donating to a charity shop or can be recycled.

Step Three: Start Designing

Decide what look are you going for, then choose your color scheme accordingly. Remember that light colors open a room up and give a feeling of space whereas dark colors can close it in and make it look smaller (but cosier). Most big DIY stores sell tiny sample pots now so that you can try colors out on your wall before your final choice. It's worth trying a few, as colors rarely look the same on the wall as they do on a color chart. Watch how the color changes at different times of day as the color you liked at noon may look totally different in the evening. Once you've decided, have confidence in your style choice. Some effects are:

  • Cool colors: blue and green

  • Warm colors: red, orange, yellow

  • Minimal: white, shades of white or pale lilac

  • Bright: vivid pink, orange, turquoise, lime green or yellow

  • Fairy tale: pastel pink, pale blue, lilac, lavender or turquoise

  • Romantic: shades of pink and red

  • Exotic (Indian, Thai, Moroccan): honey gold, orange, yellow and reds

  • Stark: black and white

Once you've decided on your colors, invite mates over for a painting party and it will be done in no time. Cover everything that might get paint splashed on it with old sheets or dust covers: i.e. the furniture, floor and yourselves!

Unless going for white all over, use a lighter shade of your wall color for the ceiling (or if you're going for something really bright and colorful, in which case, use contrasting colors). For doors, skirting boards and radiators, use a darker or lighter tone of the same color as the walls or a contrasting one.

If you want to use bold colors, but feel uncertain, the general rule is that opposite colors (red/green, blue/orange, yellow/purple) look great together and shades of the same color family look great together. Experiment on paper before hand to see how different color choices will look.

Step Four: Soft Furnishings

(e.g. curtains, blinds, bedspreads, cushions). It's always a good idea to get fabric samples before your final choice that way, you can see how the color looks in the room. Most fabric stores will give you a small strip from the end of a roll.

Don't mix too many contrasting patterns as they will all fight for space and give your room a confused look. When you add your pictures or posters, you want them to be the main focal point.

Here are some effects you might like to try:

  • For a simple, uncluttered look, blinds at the window look clean and unimposing and if you keep your soft furnishing colors within the same color family as your walls, the whole effect will be easy on the eye, i.e. if you picked blue for the walls, choose soft furnishing in the same color group (pale blue, turquoise, sky blue, navy). If you chose green, the cushions and curtains should be in shades of green.

  • For a bold bright look, go for contrasting soft furnishings. e.g. if you have blue walls, pick cushions in shades of yellow. If the walls are yellow, choose, cushions in shades of blue and purple.

  • For a soft look, choose pastels and use fine muslin draped at the window.

  • For an exotic look, choose spicy colors such as, red, orange and yellow. Drape sari material on a curtain rod over the window and have cushions made out of similar material for the bed.

  • For a romantic look, have a canopy over your bed and use shades of pink and red.

Step Five: Lighting

Bedside and table lamps can make the room look soft and warm in the evening. Again, choose the color of your light shade to complement your color theme. Candles and nightlights can also be used to make the room look atmospheric in the evening (but be careful not to place them anywhere they can set fire to something!).

Step Six: Pictures and Posters

These are completely a matter of individual taste, but think about what you want to look at morning and night for the coming months or years. Pick the frames to complement your general look.

Step Seven: Personal Touches

Personal touches around the room will finish your look. Boxes to hold your jewellery, your favorite books, magazines, photos of friends. Save up for one fabulous piece—whether it be a jewelled mirror, some sort of nick-nack or a beaded cushion—and display it somewhere that will draw the eye.

Step Eight: Scent

Don't forget one of the most powerful senses, the sense of smell. Make your room smell wonderful with essential oils, room sprays or joss sticks.

Lucy's Room

I redecorated my room over a year ago when I realized that I had outgrown my girlie pink phase. I'd been into it in a big way and everything was P-I-N-K. I wanted something a bit more sophisticated so chucked out all my fluffy toys (except for my favorite teddy bear, Mr. Mackety—no way could I ever get rid of him. We've been through too much together). My room looks fab now. I spent ages trying out different colors and finally settled on lilac mist for the walls and a powdery, pale blue on the woodwork. Mum and I went down to Brick Lane in the East End of London and bought some gorgeous sky blue sari material with embroidered silver borders. We used it to make curtains and put a swathe of it over a curtain rail at the top of the window. That was the finishing touch and really brought the room together. The room looks soft and pretty now and I've started a craze for buying sari material for people's windows.

Izzie's Room

My bedroom has turquoise walls and I have deep-purple scatter cushions and curtains. I chose turquoise as it's supposed to be a healing color so I thought, what better choice for my personal space? I also like using scented candles so my room always smells lovely. At the moment, I have a mango one and it's divine. If I had my way, I'd like to build some sort of pyramid shape on the ceiling (like a pyramid shaped mosquito net!) as it's supposed to be a healing shape to lie to sit under, but Mum said no way, Jose. If I want to see the pyramids, she says I have to go to Egypt. Mum's an accountant and not big on creativity, which is why the rest of our house is cream, safe and immaculate.

Nesta's Room

Mum did my room. I trust her taste completely as she did a course in interior design and has a real flair for it. She chose a strong lavender for the walls and put pink muslin across the windows. My bed is like a princess's as it has the pink muslin draped from the ceiling down to the head. It looks romantic with all the muslin floating round it, but not too little girlie. I also have some red velvet heart-shaped cushions on the bed which look fab and are a good focal point for the eye. Plus, like Izzie, I like my room to smell gorgeous so I use exotic room sprays, like rose or lily.

TJ's Room

You have to be joking. My parents only know one paint color and that's magnolia. Boring and a half. My room looks really old-fashioned. It's even got patterned wallpaper—cream with pale green leaves on it. I hate it. Hopefully, next birthday they'll let me decorate and I'm going to go for all the Eastern colors. Deep orange, red and gold curtains and loads of exotic-colored scatter cushions so that it looks like a sultan's harem. Mum and Dad will probably have a heart attack.

Once you've got your bedroom sorted, here are a few fun things to do in there!

Find Your Pop Star and Your Romantic-Fiction Writer Name

For your pop star name, you take the name of your first female pet if you're a girl, male pet if you're a boy, then your mother's maiden name:

Izzie's: Zizi Malone

Lucy's: Smokey Kinsler

Nesta's: Sooty Costello

TJ's: Bubbles Bailey

For your romantic-fiction writer name, you take your middle name and the name of the street where you first lived.

Izzie's: Joanna Redington

Lucy's: Charlotte Leister

Nesta's: Suzanne Lindann

TJ's: Joanne Laurier

Quiz: Find Out What You're Really About!

1. Write down your three favorite animals in order of preference. Say why you've chosen them, e.g. cats because they're independent, penguins because they're funny, owls because they're wise.

First choice reveals how you see yourself.

Second choice reveals how others see you.

Third choice reveals how you really are.

It's the adjectives chosen to say why the animal has been picked that are more revealing than the animal.

2. Make up your own book titles and authors. Here are TJ's favorites, for a start:

Pusscat's Revenge by Claude Bottom

Poo On the Wall by Hoo Flung Dung

The Revelation of St. John by Armageddon Ottahere

Bubbles In the Bath by Ivor Windybottom

Text copyright © 2005 by Cathy Hopkins

Meet the Author

Cathy Hopkins lives in North London with her handsome husband and three deranged cats. She has had nineteen books published. The fifth book
in the Mates, Dates series, Mates, Dates, and Sole Survivors, was recently released in the U.K. Piccadilly Press has launched a new series from Hopkins,
based on the classic sleepover game of Truth or Consequences.

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Mates, Dates Guide to Life, Love, and Looking Luscious (Mates, Dates Series) 4.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 72 reviews.
Paige Peterson More than 1 year ago
This series is very intresting and very realistic for teenage girls around the world... it also is fun to hear british words living in the usa... i highly rrccomeend this book.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book it's just awsome! I love it, because it´s a guide of any important girlie favourites, tips, topics. Every girl should have one. Because it includes EVERYTHING, from room decoration to french kissing. Buy one!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Ha, you are over thinking it and having doubts. In all truth if you havent kissed anyone yet then someone shouldnt judge you by it. If he does then its his problem that he doesnt deserve you and anyone that beleives him doesnt deserve you either. You have to do something to know how. If he really likes you then you have nothing to worry about and in time you will learn to be a great kisser. Hope this helps. -Preston
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Kiss your hand then post this 3 different places then look under your pillow
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Kiss your hand post this on three other books and look under your pillow
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
What is nook sex and can i have it with some guy? Im a babe with brown hair and eyes. I WANT NOOK SEX!!!!!!!!!!!!!! ps im skinny and cute,and boys beware of my sex!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Kiss your hand and post this 3times
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Sample is ok
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
From pink ipad
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Theres a post that's called 30 ways to make a girl smile.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I totally agree. Most people are being totally ridculous. From the free synopsis that I read it seems like good book that I would recommend.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Stop being inaprropriate and answer the guestion do you like the boolk or not and STOP CHATTING!!!!!!!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Hey thats not adivice thats playing wit people
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I know 100% how you feel! But... this is for you not me. ONE: For two or three weeks,just talk to the guy. Find out if you have simular thoughts on things. TWO: Start dropping hints,but dont be like... "HI CUTIE I MEAN" For sure do not do that. For again one or two weeks just scoot a little closer to him during the periods you see him and make excuses to talk or touch his hand. LAST STEP: Great! You know what he likes and know what makes him feel akward or uneasy... here is your last step... Just ask him out! If he says no, wait a few months or years. Mabey some day he will say yes.! -gamergal111
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I'm not playing with people,I am genuinly trying to help others with anything they need advice on. I mean you dont have to come to me but it sure would be apperciated. Anyways thank you fir your opinion but it wasnt needed.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I am an 11 year old boy and almosr all the girls in my grade hate me because something stupid i did in fith grade they see me as disguisting an inappropriate but tha was in firh grade i really want them to see me a different way but i dont know what to do PLEASE HELP reply to ollieman93 ps im the youngest in my grade and im worried about relationsship if im trying to hard or something because few people in my class are bf and gf thank u 4reading my rewiew
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
To know if a guy likes you by the way he lok at you. When i waz in 7 grade we had to wtch a movie of puberty for boys and girls the entire time it waz talkin bout girl this boy i now that i alway talk to and sit by kept looking at me with hunger eyes to learn every thing about my body Thats how ull now
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
She probably does like you. Coming from a girl thats what girls do! We may not flip our hair to everyguy we like its sorta an instinct to get the guy we like to notice us more. But if she's doing this to the other guys then she may not :/ Also make the first move! Girls love that! Even just compliment her. Just simple things. But that doesn't mean she shoukdn't flirt back. ~Mandy12
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Here's what you do. Just be yourself. Tell him that you would likw to talk to him in private and tell him how you feel. Then ask him if he likes you back. If he does ask him if he will go out with you on a date. There is a saying: If you love something set it free if it comes back to you its youts to keep if it doesn't come back then it wasn't meant to be. -Rose
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Shut up stupid hoes. Their only words.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Mia, im 19
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Id go for the nerdy gut because you will know that he likes you and you dont have to go theough all that nervousness just to find out if rhe popular guy likes you -reply to krystal
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
There are these two guys. One of them is nice but nerdy(my friends think he likes me) the other is a cool popular guy that i don't really know but i like him. Which one would be a better choice? The nerd who likes me or the popular?