Forty is nothing now, neither is fifty, and I could go on. Age is completely irrelevant; we are all looking better and better with age. We know how to take care of ourselves, we know what ‘not to do’ and we know exactly what we like and what we don’t like.
Let’s be totally realistic here, it is very definitely a bit ‘ostrich-like’ to pretend that we can move from one age group into the next and ‘think that nothing changes’. You simply cannot pretend that everything stays the same forever, ‘or think that it stays in the same place’. A good place to start is to focus on your ‘hair’. The ‘just got out of bed-look’,’ beach-bleached do’ should have been well retired by now — this is the time when you really focus on ‘conditioning’ your hair. Whatever you do, don’t ‘over-trim’ your hair, the move from long hair to a bob can age some an easy 10 years, so be careful and think it through.
As we age, our skin can lose that ‘flawless’ quality, some women think that this is the time to ‘heavy-on’ with foundation…I say, always think make-up, not foundation. Don’t ever go for the ‘plaster-effect’. What you will need to do when you are over 40 is to get help at any make-up counter, ask how best to apply a contour palette, they make a ‘huge’ difference and can take years off…but only if they are applied correctly. Our skin can dehydrate quickly, so you might need to change your make-up brand, test as many samples as you can, and always remember that the lights at a make-up counter are far brighter than normal, so best to make your decision at home. Take a mirror outside into daylight and then you can best judge, which will work best for you.
Always, always carry a pair of sunglasses in your bag, squinting at ‘our’ age can leave permanent lines…and who wants that. Go glamorous with your choice of sunglasses, they can make a huge fashion statement and camouflage tired eyes when needed!
Please do ‘not’ go quietly into navy pumps with a mid-heel, or a plain loafer and do ‘not’ take up permanent residence in ‘runners’! Keep your eyes peeled for ‘fun shoes’ — unusual shoes in striking colours. Shoes are now where you can score major fashion points.
Summer is here, we all want to shed the many layers that have ‘kept us together’ through the winter but watch out for knees. Yes, everyone does rattle on about your arms letting you down over 40 but what about your knees, they can scream loudly. Take a good look at Kate Moss in short dresses now, she looks amazing, except for her knees. So, just imagine how some of us ‘mere mortals’ can look without even realising it — a full-length mirror is every most woman’s essential item in her wardrobe!
So many ageing women say that they can never wear ‘black’ because it is ‘too draining’. I say ‘work a little harder and you will look amazing in black’. Avoid flat black, opt for a more lush fabric but you simply must jazz it up with colourful earrings, red lipstick or a stunning neckpiece. Black is never boring, some women just ‘get bored and don’t bother making an effort’!
You are never too old for the latest jeans if you look ‘half-decent’ and take a little care of your shape. Denim is everywhere this summer — leave the ripped and fraying pairs to your daughters or grandchildren. Avoid jeans with those ‘white lines’ across the thigh, they are supposed to ‘contour’ but they actually look quite cheap. Never ever wear a pair of skinny jeans that are lighter than a mid blue — who wants to look like a ‘rock-chick-wannabe’ at 50? Always opt for high or mid-rise, much more flattering. You would be amazed at the number of women who buy a jean length that is too long and have a load of spare denim bunched up above their shoe. As with all great trousers, a little ankle on show is a ‘great’ thing. When you are matching shoes to a pair of denims, think opposites attract; a slim leg benefits from a chunky shoe, a stiletto looks best and more modern with a looser cut, maybe even a boyfriend-cut. Avoid the WAG look — skinny heels and skinny jeans — leave it exactly where it belongs, on a WAG!
Here is a list of a few things that I call ‘my over-40 cheat list’. Make sure that you have a funky pair of gold or silver shoes —they add a little OOHHLALA, just when you might need it. Helen Mirren might carry off a black biker jacket but she is the exception to the rule, go for a biker jacket in a green or tan. Invest in jaw-dropping beautiful scarves — they add beauty, glamour and major ‘cool’ points to any plain outfit. But remember, don’t do it all of the time because you will ‘dry up the look’! If you are looking for a little rejuvenation, have your ankles or calves on show — very flattering. Invest in a glorious summer dress with angled-stripes, these stripes point in towards your waist giving you a longer and leaner look.
No matter what tricks you might have up your sleeve, accepting that ‘things’ change, as you get older, is half the battle. Be realistic about your shape, be grateful that you are lucky enough to see another summer, never ever stop researching tips and tools to help you look your absolute best because you deserve to look your absolute best all of the time. Smother on lots of glorious body lotion now, take some Vitamin D3 for your skin and add Turmeric to everything, it helps joint pain, stiffness and inflammation, but also very quickly can be seen to plump up saggy skin.
I’m going to finish with the hottest tip to keep you looking good this summer — ‘smile’. That bothered stiff look that some might think is Beckham-esque actually makes you look stuffy and rude, so smile to your hearts content. It makes you look younger, more beautiful and, very definitely, more approachable. Bottom line girls — ‘it won’t cost you anything’!