Many of you know that my other hat bears the words ‘Beauty Bible’. For the past 17 years, I have co-written the seven books and jointly edited the website (beautybible.com) with YOU contributing editor Jo Fairley. This week, a new edition of The Anti-Ageing Beauty Bible is published, with updated ‘tried and tested’ products to reflect award-winning new arrivals.
We’re rather proud that Beauty Bible product trials are known as the biggest independent ones worldwide. Each product goes to panels of ten women to trial in real-life conditions and report on comprehensively. We average their scores to find our winners; a convincing eight or nine out of ten is typical for the top scorers.
We are absolutely not ‘against’ ageing. In fact, we rather love getting older but we want to feel and look as good as we can during the process. Sure, there are more bits travelling south, grey hairs growing and lines sprouting, and there is sadness too, but – at 64 for me and 57 for Jo – we’re happier, healthier (truly), look OK most days, work as hard as ever, mind less about small stuff and laugh much more. Fascinatingly, new research suggests that ‘healthy living turns back the ageing clock’ (as the New Scientist puts it). As we age, telomeres – the caps that protect our chromosomes as cells divide and are linked to health and lifespan – wear away. But a small five-year study shows that telomeres can regrow substantially (an average of ten per cent) when participants adopt a vegetarian lifestyle, with daily exercise including yoga.
Skincare-wise, a novel compound called baicalin, obtained from skullcap root, has a similar effect on the telomeres in skin cells. Applied topically, it seems to kick-start cells (scientists don’t yet know how), restoring a younger rate of cell turnover and rejuvenating skin.
Cosmetics won’t transform the world but they can surely help a grey day (see our website of the week). And we have always evangelised about an inside/outside approach in every way: live well and take care of what you put in and on your face and body.
PS I just wanted to let you know that I was married for the first time last year and that has given me such happiness. So it just shows that life can get better and better.
Find the new edition of The Anti-Ageing Beauty Bible exclusively on victoriahealth.com for the special price of £12.95 (rrp £15.99). The first 250 YOU readers to order a copy will receive a free bottle of Femergy, our favourite energising supplement, worth £10.25, plus our Beauty Bible Lip Balm, £6. After this offer, readers will receive the free Beauty Bible Lip Balm until 30 November.
CHECK YOUR POST-SUMMER SKIN
Now tans have faded, it is a good time to check any moles or changes in pigmentation. If you notice any alterations, visit your GP. Decades of sun-worship mean that more 40-somethings are suffering from actinic – or solar – keratoses (AK): ‘Scaly messy red and brown patches on my face, hands and back’, according to one reader, Caroline, who was diagnosed last year. AKs may lead to skin cancer so must be removed. Of her 23, three were removed and nine treated with liquid nitrogen, but the best treatment for her was prescription cream Picato, which, after brief red crustiness, clears skin rapidly. She warns her daughter: ‘Never use sunbeds, always apply SPF30, and go to a dermatologist if you see any changes in your skin.’
WEBSITE OF THE WEEK
This worldwide support charity for women and teens struggling with the visible side effects of cancer treatment (eg, skin issues and hair loss) has just launched its updated website. A 12-step skincare and make-up programme is demoed in clips, you can order a Confidence Kit with a DVD and 48-page booklet (for a suggested minimum £5 donation), or sign up for the two-hour free workshops in hospitals and cancer care centres nationwide. One patient, Fiona, testifies: ‘LGFB lifted me out of my depression. I didn’t feel isolated any more; I felt less “branded” and ugly. It made me feel like a woman again.’