Ugh mid-life...

Thursday, March 05, 2015

There is nothing easy about the 50's. At 53 in my mind I'm 20, but my body is not in-sync.  Not to sound like a whiner, but each day brings a new challenge...a new line on my face, a strange ache or pain, and lots of memory loss "what's the word for_____?" ..."oh yes, sandwich". Scary stuff.

However the biggest challenge I've noticed is around my middle. Okay, I've always had a bit of a pot belly, but nothing like the rubber tire that's now forming inch by inch around what used to be a defined waist! I work-out and have barely gained any weight (well maybe a few pounds), but this extra flab is raising havoc with the way my clothes are fitting!

If any of this sounds familiar, the reality is that aging calls for change. Now I'm not advocating that we move over to the dark side of orthopedic shoes and boring clothes, but there are styles that just don't work anymore. Here are a few things that I've learned along my middle-age journey.

  • Revaluate your colors-- This goes for your hair, make-up and clothes. Colors that used to look great on me, now wash me out. Our skin tone changes as we age, so it's time to experiment with new shades! Some fun and vibrant colors to play with are cobalt blue, coral, raspberry and kelly green. Also think about alternatives to black, which can be a bit harsh on some women (I happen to love navy). Talk with your hair stylist about adding a few highlights...I'm a big fan of going lighter as we age (it's softer). Once you've landed a hair color, adjust your make-up shades as well. 
  • Loosen up--I'm not saying that you should wear big baggy clothes (no way!), but look for forgiving fabrics that float around the middle, instead of clinging. I love silky materials for this reason!
  • Rise above--Low-rise pants and jeans don't work for the majority of middle-age women, thus the popularity of high-rise jeans such as Not Your Daughter's Jeans. Just about every denim company has a version of the high-rise that works fabulously to minimizes the dreaded muffin-top.
  • Spend a little more--Once upon a time I could rock super inexpensive pieces. Now for the most part, they just don't work for me. I've learned to buy less clothes, but better pieces that fit well. Look for quality fabrics and well constructed clothing that will last for a long time.  A few of my favorite lines are Theory, Classique, Joie, Vince, and  J. Crew.  If you like a good bargain, shop Marshall's and TJ's for fabulous deals on quality pieces. I also find that the end of the season sales at Neiman's, Bloomingdales and Nordstrom are amazing! 
Max Studio sweater, just $44.25 at Neiman's Last Call  
Love the wrap style for camouflaging the mid-section.

  • Your new BFF--In order to get a perfect fit, most clothes need a little nip or tuck. Find yourself a fabulous tailor and he/she will soon become your best friend for life. Tailoring is an inexpensive way to get an impeccable fit.
  • Keep things simple but fabulous--When there's "too much going on" women can look older than they actually are. Choose simple styles with one stand-out piece such as a fabulous necklace, bag or statement coat.
Emmanuelle Alt
  • Necklines matter--As we age, high boxy necklines may no longer work. I haven't seen the likes of a turtleneck in scrunches up my neck and makes me look ten years older! Some of the most flattering necklines are a soft cowl, scoop, boatneck and deep V.  If you are neck-concious, add a beautiful scarf or gorgeous necklace for a bit of coverage.
Ralph Laure from Bloomingdales (and on sale for under $100!)
  • Get tech savvy--Skincare has come a long way and the technology out there is amazing! I love the hydra-facial for instant plumping results. There are also long-term fixes such as Pelleve and laser facials that really work to tighten and firm the skin.
  • Think positive thoughts--My friend "power of the mind expert" Fran Spayne always tells me about the amazing power our thoughts have over our bodies.  It's exercise for the brain!
  • Laugh often...after all it sure beats the alternative!
Stay tuned to learn about an upcoming anti-aging workshop with fabulous guest speakers.  
Follow me on Facebook for all the details. 

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