Rule number 4: I scream for SUNSCREEN!

Save your face from more wrinkles right now

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Dracula got it right. He knew that the daylight would kill him. No matter what they say about him, he did have good skin.

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During our 50’s our skin changes a lot. Its gets bumpier and duller; thinner in places, thicker in others; there are saggier bits and more wrinkles. But hold tight, you CAN STOP this from getting a lot worse. But, you need to start today, whatever the weather.

The biggest thing that causes premature aging is light. Yes: sunlight, cloudy light, computer screen light, through-the-car-window light, basically pretty much any light. And not enough of you know this. Protecting your skin against daylight is a MUST. Every single day of the year. A study in Australia done over a four year period CONCLUSIVELY proved that by wearing sunscreen every single day, not only helped in the protection against skin cancer, but also with pigmentation, loss of elasticity, open pores, dullness, lines and wrinkles.

Report on the 4 year study

A 69 year old truck driver reveals how half his face has been so irrevocably damaged by the sun, see the difference for yourselves.

Sun damage to half the face

Yet not enough of us wear sunscreen on a daily basis. WHY? Because we don’t live in Australia? Because we think as it’s dull, cold winter we won’t need it? Because we need vitamin D? Because its cloudy? Because we want a tan? Because we think of sunscreen as gloopy, greasy, sticky and claustrophobic? Because we think we’re going to look like flipping clowns?

sunscreen face

Are we insane? (yes) Or do we just not realise the extent of the damage simple daylight does to our faces? Or is that we just want to wear our favourite moisturizers? Well here’s the thing, you can still wear your moisturizers (in fact many have now incorporated sunscreen into their creams, but I’ll come back to that in a minute); you don’t have to look like a total freak and you’ll be even more insane NOT to protect your face. Some people say that sunscreens can be harmful, that we don’t know what damage can be caused by the ingredients…well, there’s an awful lot more people dying of skin cancers than there are dying of sunscreen. But you need the right one.

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You get UVA (A = aging) & UVB (B = burning) rays, so you must get a moisturizer or face sunscreen that has BROAD SPECTRUM protection. Broad spectrum means that it will protect against both A & B rays. The A’s penetrate deeper into the skin & cause damage that will come and haunt you forever if you don’t stop them now.

 

And SP15 is no where near enough. The fairer your skin, the more prone you are to damage; but if you’re very dark skinned don’t think you don’t need it, because you absolutely do. You should be looking for creams with broad spectrum cover of anything between factor 30 & 50. And that’s just for the winter. If you’re somewhere where its very hot and sunny, then you need to use minimum 50 and make sure you either reapply when needed or get one that is once a day application. And wear a hat. And sunglasses. And maybe take an umbrella if you want to look really professional.

Cameron Diaz Protected
Cameron knows her skin is worth it

So come on girls get wise. Save those lovely faces of yours. I personally use a number of different products. When I use both moisturizers and a sunscreen (specifically crafted for the face), I leave at least 15 minutes in between applications and allow 15 minutes indoors after applying sunscreen, to allow it to properly sink in, before I step outside.

Here are a few of the top brands that have that broad spectrum SPF you need.

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Buy best selling British brand here

Alpha H is an Australian brand that totally understands the incredible importance and value of protecting yourself on a daily basis. I frequently use their daily moisturiser with a built in factor 50: this product is genuinely both moisturising and protective.

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Buy Alpha H Sp 50 here

Another one of my favorites is by the Swiss brand Ultra Sun. They are incredibly strong on the efficacy of their products, they manufacture their creams so that they only have to be applied once a day and they work. I sometimes find (depending upon what I’ve put my skin through) that I need a moisturiser as well, but in the summer more often not.

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Here’s one place you can get it

However, if you do find that you are left with a ashy or white residue, then try moisturizing a good few minutes before applying the sunscreen. Or simply apply some bronzer or foundation on top. If your foundation already has SPF in, then double check that it is both broad spectrum and a high enough factor. Talking of make-up…well that’s another post coming soon..

Meanwhile over to Baz….

 

 

 

 

Rule number 3: Find your sexy (yes, it’s up to you)

It starts with the undies, just because no one can see them doesn’t mean they’re not important, your bottoms shouldn’t be on the bottom of the list, and keep your tits at the top. Flirt with yourself first, and ditch those awful knicks.

Love your undies, cause that’s where it all starts. When did you last buy yourself a new  crossover, or underwired; triangle, balconette, halterneck, backless, strapless, Queen size, king-size; push-up, or squash-down; T-back, or light n lacy; comfy but sassy bra? And matching knickers? Briefs? G-string? Spanks? Pants? Anything?

WELL, WHY THE HECK NOT?

Modelling bras, (whilst telling myself ‘it’s just like wearing a bikini on a beach’), for a shoot for The Daily Mail…oddly.. all about bras…

 

Finding the right bra

So girls. Rule number 3: find your sexy.

It starts with the undies, just because no one can see them doesn’t mean they’re not important, your bottoms shouldn’t be on the bottom of the list, and keep your tits at the top. Flirt with yourself first, and ditch those awful knicks.

I don’t care if you’re happily single, unhappily married or vice versa; unhappy with your entire image, or all right with some bits of your body – YOUR BODY, the one you’ve had for ages now, the one that’s been with you through thick and thin – you’ve gotta love it. This body of yours is not going anywhere, so you’d better start fully appreciating ALL of it from now on in. Don’t “hate my feet” or “despise my tummy” or insult your tits, “they’re just empty tea-bags,” “pendulous and baggy”; or any other part of you, “my arse is keeping my ankles warm”, “the dimples on my knees have dimples”,”I have no neck”, “I’m just so scrawny” etc.

STOP IT. 

ENOUGH.

Your imperfections are what make you perfect. So love all of them, despite size, shape – lumpy and bumpy; skinny or bony; whatever non-conformist or haphazardly put together person you feel you are, you gotta love it

 

bless this mess
Happy with who I am

BLESS THIS MESS T-Shirt

You’re unique and wonderful, no mater how far along the spectrum you feel you’re away from the standard ‘expected’ sizes and assets, I think you are beautiful. Most of you reading this are over 45, you’ve therefore been here long enough to recognise that this is it. This is what you’ve got. There’s no point in hating it; or hating any little, bad or big, bits of it.

(I know & love that there are many of you out there who are already fully loving and appreciating your bodies for what they are: this isn’t really an article for you).

But for those of us who may have lost a bit of lust with ourselves…well, we need to rediscover and

find our sexy.

I’m not saying this in order for you to attract another – that may well be a by-product – but it all starts with you. The nurturing ‘my sexy’ is an easy thing to forget to do, especially as we get older, while we watch bits of our bodies slide towards the ground and other bits flourish outwards at a seemingly unstoppable rate.

No! Us fabulous 50s (& beyond) have all the more reason to make a proper conscientious effort to go buy some underwear that we love and feel fantastic in. You’re never too old to do this. When I make the effort (& it is indeed an effort) to wear lovely matching bra and knickers, I feel extra good.

I know my liddle secret.

Be in control with style control wear

It doesn’t matter if no one ever knows that on any particular day, I wore a stunning bra n’ knicks, because I got all the benefit myself. I do obviously appreciate that if I got run over… well, you know….same goes for hot date/non-private fitting rooms/wedding night/fire alarm drill at the gym etc.

But brilliant bras aren’t cheap. I HATE how much the really lovely ones cost. How dare they? For that tiny amount of triangle and elastic? Seriously? It’s the tailoring, I tell myself. Its the fit. Its the harmonious symphony of breast meeting brassiere. The prices are quite painful…but it’s okay, I say, buying yourself a beautiful bra tells you that you are worth it, every penny – which you absolutely are. I bought a few gorgeous bras and knicks, from the @ellemacpherson range, they still make me feel a million dollars, every time I wear them….but….shit, that was over 6 years ago now…..I need to take my own advice here…think I’ve def had my money’s worth now…time to refresh…

Elle gets it right….check this little puppy out, imagine wearing this bra whilst you’re walking around Sainsbury’s, your supermarket shopping would be so much more fun, just quietly inwardly knowing what you were wearing underneath….sooooo gorgeous beautiful bra

Another fabulous range is Intimissimi – lovely and reasonably affordable range…

But equally going to your nearest Primark or New Look and getting yourself a few new cheaper undies does the trick just as well – the result just doesn’t last as long (maybe one wash….5 if you’re lucky LOL) – but you still get a result. You know that you’ve got new underwear on and, oh boy, does that feel luxurious! Or am I the only one that doesn’t buy new underwear very often?? Oh lord….

I totally understand that this ‘loving your body’ biz, is no easy feat to achieve. After all, most of us, have spent a lifetime habitually hating at least one thing about ourselves. Yes, my hands could be a lot prettier; my skin a lot clearer, my waist a touch tauter etc etc, but they’re not, and they never will be what I see as perfect.

Accept what you have. What if I lost my hand in an accident? How much would I love it then? As a child, did you ever think to yourself, “what if I died? Then they’d be sorry!“? I have to admit, I’ve cried at my own imagined funeral a few times. Pathetic, I know. But true. Finally grew out of that one when I was about 16, thank god…although I admit, I’ve got my funeral music planned…so the funeral thoughts have never really totally gone away… I digress. Forget what others may think at your funeral! Think about how you feel now. If you’re feeling hot and gorgeous inside, then no one can take that away from you. Others may well also get the benefit of super sexy you, but YOU will get it the most.

So come on girls….I see you baby, shaking that arse…

 

Rule number 2: Cleanse. It sounds so boring, but its both essential and great.

HANDS UP IF YOU GO TO BED WITHOUT TAKING YOUR MAKE UP OFF?

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STOP IT NOW, IF YOU WANT GREAT SKIN, YOU GOTTA CLEANSE!

…..and I mean EVERY NIGHT, even if you’re a little bit tipsy, JUST DO IT!

Now you’re older, whether you’re 38 or 87, or anything in between, its time. Its TIME  to really take care of this cleansing routine. In fact great cleansing is imperative to get into your life regardless of age, so those of you in your ‘earlies’ get into a routine now and you’ll reap the benefits forever more.

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bare to face

However, for those who’ve been on the planet a while; not only have you undoubtedly acquired many ‘things’ such as old books, inherited artifacts, children (maybe); miss-matching towels; speeding fines; debt, a crap vacuum cleaner etc but you’ve also more than likely gained some worrying wrinkles; perhaps a smattering of pesky pigmentation; some screaming scars; open pores, flaky, dry patchy skin or just ruddy rosacea; whatever misdemeanors that now sully your once glowing, perky, vibrant, peachy skin can, in fact, be helped. A lot. Just by great cleansing.

So this is a two-pronged attack. I want to encourage you all to have a clear out; with everything – permanent complaints, excess clothing, dead skin cells, temperamental bowels, bulging cupboards, clutter, useless men: the lot.

EXFOLIATION IS KEY

Just as you wouldn’t wear the same pair of knickers for months on end, nor should you wear those skin cells. When we’re in our ‘earlies’ our skin naturally replenishes itself at an astonishing speed. By the time we’re 30, our skin has got less efficient and the dead cells are replaced more slowly. By the time we’re 40, its even slower. Once we’re 50 and beyond…well we need to get the big guns out to drag off those determined old cells that cling like glue to our faces and bodies, hanging on for as long as they possibly can in order to facilitate deeper, darker wrinkles; bigger, badder, more rotund pores and dull dull OH SO DULL skin.

NO THANK YOU. 

Here are some of my favorite products that REALLY MAKE A DIFFERENCE.

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Buy Alpha H Liquid Gold here

Alpha H Liquid Gold is genius. First brand ever to recognize that exfoliation is key. Wipe this over cleansed (Alpha H Balancing Cleanser is FANTASTIC for ALL skin types) skin at night and you’ll feel a tingle – this is your skin being woken up, sent into the gym, as Liquid Gold forces your PH levels to rebalance. Do not moisturize. No need, Just go to bed and let the magic work. While you’re sleeping the AHA’s slowly munch away at your dead skin cells, revealing a fresh, hydrated face in the morning. Do use sun screen the following day. This product is brilliant for ALL SKIN COMPLAINTS.

As far as cleansing goes, this Flora Mare 4eversonic is a Great hygienic facial tool

4EVERSONICDIAMARE

If you don’t like the idea of an AHA exfoliator then a physical one can work just as well. I recommend the Flora Mare 4eversonic, in my opinion its better than any sonic brushes out there. Partly because bacteria can fester in brushes, no matter how frequently you clean or change the heads, but also because the 4eversonic is a joy to use, leaving your skin feeling like glass. For the older skin I highly recommend the Diamare range from Flora Mare, pictured above is their beautiful creamy cleanser, which again leaves the skin thoroughly clean and smooth.

 

ITS NOT ALL ABOUT THE FACE: YOU GOTTA BODY SCRUB TOO

I’m currently testing a couple of different body scrubs, so have none to recommend at the moment – but even if you just get a pair of exfoliating mitts and some body wash, add a little salt and olive oil and your skin will feel amazing.

BUT GOING BACK TO CLEANSING ALL OVER….

No one likes a mess. Not really. Some people say they don’t mind living in a mess, but I don’t believe them. It hurts your head. Its annoying not being able to find stuff. Cleansing your life is as beneficial as cleansing your skin. Have a clear out. Its incredible what it does for the soul. Your junk could be someone else’s…junk, or maybe they would have a use for it…either way, get rid. Don’t hang on to stuff that is just taking space. Head space. Space space. Every time you buy a new piece of clothing, make it a rule to either give a piece away or throw a piece away. Sort through that clutter on the side, it won’t take long and it will no longer irritate you slightly every time you see it. Likewise with friends – if they’re not bringing it, then drop them. Yeah that sounds mean,  but seriously, if you have certain friends who only ever have negative things to say about you and your life…..the dump ’em. Have a cabinet re-shuffle and nuture the good ones.

So please girls, you’ve got one skin, make the most of it. Treat it right and you’ll get rewards. Of course, skin health is not just about cleansing, its also down to stress, pollution, sun damage, sleep deprivation, smoking, drinking and men. Yes, men. If he’s dragging you down, putting you down, or never going down….there’s just one thing for it….you gotta….

wash that man right outta yer hair