What's so special about marula oil? I tried argan oil, which is supposed to be amazing for the skin, but I didn't see much improvement.
Marula Musing, South Side

The Dictator: Huh? That's like saying, "I don't really like the taste of apples. Will I like oranges?" Marula and argan oils have both enjoyed their 15 minutes of fame, but they are distinct. Argan oil, traditionally made from the seed of argan trees, has been used in beauty products and food in Morocco for generations. Marula oil, extracted from the kernels of the marula tree, also has applications in cosmetics and cuisine, but is associated with South Africa. Both are touted for their antioxidant properties and richness in omega-9, but marula oil apparently offers greater amounts, thereby giving the skin more moisture, elasticity and youthfulness. There are no "anti-ageing secrets", just good skincare to manage what your DNA and lifestyle have dealt you. Los Angeles-based African Botanics offers Pure Marula Oil (HK$690; Joyce Beauty) while fellow American brand Drunk Elephant prides itself on using only the unrefined form in its Virgin Marula Luxury Facial Oil (HK$558; www.b-glowing.com), which means it hasn't been processed with chemicals. The Body Shop lists the ingredient in its Cocoa Butter Beautifying Oil (HK$159), All-in-One Instablur 5-Action Perfector (HK$169) and Moisture Foundation SPF 15 (HK$179).

How can I wear one of those sheer tops and still look tasteful? I've noticed quite a few ladies wearing them but some just look ridiculous.
Sheer Insanity, Macdonnell Road

The Dictator rules: Who says you have to wear a sheer top ever? If you're not comfortable with the idea of it, imagine how insecure you'll feel wearing one in public. It's not even a major trend this season. If there is a must-have sheer top this season, it's probably by Givenchy. Try the black satin and sheer chiffon blouse with red piping (HK$19,000); the white Swiss dot tulle top with ruffles (HK$13,500); or the transparent black chiffon shirt embellished with faux pearls (HK$20,700). Maison Martin Margiela is also in the running for top prize with its black chiffon tops, such as a pussy bow blouse and cut-out sleeveless top (about HK$15,000 each). Of course, truly elegant women know there must always be a balance between what is shown and what remains a mystery. Take direction from the Armani Collezioni top constructed from layers of black sheer silk organza and jersey with bands of crepe at the neck, wrist and hem (HK$5,300; Lane Crawford). When in doubt over what to wear underneath, find inspiration in Red Valentino's cream silk sheer top with a ruffle down the placket (HK$17,300); it comes with a singlet for modesty. At the very least, please wear a bra that obscures your nipples and won't show more than you intended when flash photography is involved

Got a question for The Dictator? E-mail her with your name, or alias, and address at: dictator@scmp.com