The most important beauty tip Kate Winslet
ever received, she says, came from her mum. "She said if I ever start to get the family whiskers—because there are women in my family that do get them—never, ever pluck! Always trim. And a makeup-artist friend told me that when I get a spot, don't squeeze! And if you must squeeze, it's essential to exfoliate." The 20-year-old actress keeps her toilette simple—with two exceptions. "My most prized possession is my pair of eyelash curlers, which I wouldn't sell to anyone," she says. Neither would she give up her dozens of pairs of funky boots, "because they mean that my feet are on the ground. Besides, I can't bear pathetic little shoes." That kind of spunk, says Richard Briers, who plays Polonius to her Ophelia in Kenneth Branagh's forthcoming Hamlet
, reflects Winslet's "bloom of youth." As the fragile Marianne in Sense and Sensibility
, the 119-lb. Winslet was compared to a Pre-Raphaelite maiden in the British press, but as a Reading, England teenager tipping the scales at 185, she better resembled the chunky cherubs painted by Rubens. "For a good two or three-years my nickname was Blubber," she says. "Being overweight is a family trait too. But I knew that I wouldn't work if I stayed that way."