Socialite to Sport Coke Nose on Game Face at British Royal Wedding

By Walter Armstrong 04/13/11

Former "Naughty Girl" T-P-T has no time to fix cocaine-ravaged honker for the big bash.

Tara Palmer-Tomkinson smiles through.
Photo via splashnews

The royal nuptials of Prince William and Kate Middleton on April 29 is certain to be a fashion parade, as 1,900 titles and other bigwigs fill Westminster Abbey with bespoke suits and designer dresses, formal ties and tails, fabulous hats and hairdos. A bit of Botox and some last-minute nips and tucks will no doubt also be on display (or, hopefully, not). But pity poor Tara Palmer-Tomkinson, the famed It Girl of London’s go-go ‘90s, whose unique “what to wear?” predicament has become fodder for the city’s wedding-obsessed—and famously nasty—tabloids. T-P-T, as she is fondly known, has been shopping for a new nose, but to no avail. Her youthful days of fierce cocaine addiction came back to haunt her like a modern-day Dorian Gray. The powder consumed the wall of cartilage between her septum, causing her nose to collapse, and a botched rhinoplasty only added to her bashed-in look. As the Daily Mail snidely put it, “There’s no point in hiding it now.” The tabs have been tracking Tara's nose for years, but the spirited T-P-T has managed to keep her game face. "If I can get my nose fixed for the wedding that would be ideal,” she said. "I’m not sure it’s going to be possible, but hopefully something can be done in time."

Tara went to rehab at the Meadows in Arizona in 1999, reportedly shedding her $300-a-day coke yoke. “I would do more than five grams of coke a day. In the end, I didn’t do lines—I threw the stuff in the air and sniffed clouds of it,” she said. Since then she has cashed in on her hard-partying past, authoring The Naughty Girl's Guide to Life, appearing on celebrity TV shows in transparent dresses and gold hotpants, and hawking for Nicorette—until she was seen around town smoking like a chimney. As for her honker, it has suffered one flop after another. A series of Botox injections offered only temporary support, so in 2006 T-P-T finally went under the knife, during which cartilage from her right ear was implanted in her nasal septum. But she said she removed the stint too soon, and has been trying to keep a low profile, hiding behind hats and sunglasses, ever since.
With only a fortnight to go before the wedding, that outfit may have to do. But Tara can be counted on to make the best of it—as she has all the noise about her nose. "It would be an absolute physical impossibility for me to drugs in my lifetime," she said. "The nose would come off in my hand. I'm very pleased as drugs almost took my life away."
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Walter Armstrong is the Medical Editor at  Saatchi & Saatchi Wellness and the former deputy editor of The Fix. You can find him on Linkedin.