Vigilant Beauty: Fighting Frumpery, Letting Go, and the Odd Spot of Nude Sunbaking
I was digging through some stuff in my beauty file (Yes, I have a beauty file. Your point?) and found this article by Anna Johnson (an Australian writer who wrote one of my favorites: Three Black Skirts is All You Need to Survive. Seriously, I love that book.) that inspired me (LBOS isn't the only one divinely inspired) to share with you (I added a few comments).
And remember: those of us under 40 won't always be.
Style up. Turning 40 is the perfect occasion to take inventory on your wardrobe, your makeup drawer and beauty routines that have become outdated. The difference between elegance and frumpery could be as subtle the wrong hemlength or a laquered up-do that needs to be ditched. Soften your makeup by learning how to blend, flatter your face by wearing color and a more forgiving hairstyle. The uniform we all had in our 30’s of hair pinned up and basic black (I'm not giving up black. Forget it.) becomes limiting and simply severe 10 years on. Now is the time to refine the looks that suit you and let go of timeworn habits masquerading as personal style.
Beauty mantra: Older is wiser and a hell of lot more chic.
Fat. It just doesn’t budge so easily over 50. Now is the time to reduce your intake of calories and break away from comfort foods. Tempting as it is to "let go" and form a menopausal cake fixation (oh honey, you have no idea), I urge you to burn your plus-size catalogues (bela?) and start pumping iron. Weight bearing exercise controls the pounds and helps protect your bones from thinning, a critical health issue for women in middle age.
Beauty mantra: Vitality is a woman in motion.
Sex seems a good idea for senior beauty. (HAH, it's a good idea! I'd like to see some statistics on how much sex is being had among age groups. Just wondering.) Making marmalade all day (yeah, there's a whole lot of marmalade making going on out there) just won’t give you the same glow. If a blazing affair isn’t on the horizon (you might be surprised), then at least indulge in some beauty regimes that focus on sensuality: pedicures, oil baths, massage, sea bathing and an odd spot of nude sun baking (I guess she figures this far down the road you don't need to worry about wrinkles? Or melanoma? Please rethink this) remind you to be a goddess, not just a grandma. By now you know how to eat your vegetables, stretch your limbs and spend peaceful time alone, but don’t forget that the spice of life (and vibrant beauty) is variety.Have your feet done up with a henna tattoo, find a lush new scent (we're here to help) and double your intake of raw foods.
Beauty mantra: The most striking women are always a little shocking.
Ladies, please consider this a public service announcement.
Today's fragrance: speaking of sex, if you need any help, I suggest a little Boudoir by Vivienne Westwood. This oriental features notes of viburnum, marigold, orange blossom, orris, rose, cinnamon, coriander, cardamom, amber, vanilla, sandalwood, patchouli. Variously described as "saucy and racy" and "a scent for a woman's private space." There's some truth to THAT. Try it. Find out what we mean. Heh.