Thursday


Stay fashionable with a modern twist


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Fashion is about to go back 40 years or so. Are you ready for that? Yes, the word is that AW14 will be awash with 70s retro styling, with Gucci, St Laurent and Louis Vuitton leading the way. And who can argue with them? Look out for pussy-bow blouses and midi-skirts in leather, chambray and velvet textures, plus block-heeled knee-high boots.

You can give the 70s look a modern twist with a loose-fit white tee-shirt tucked into a midi-skirt or wide-legged trousers. And why not try a polo-neck under a ruffled blouse or wear a long-line waistcoat with a midi-dress? Another update is mixing muted shades like tan and dark orange with printed separates. Leopard print is so 1970s when it's in the original tan and black (last year was all about neon leopard). Now it's seen at almost every runway show, on everything from shoes and bags to skirts and tops. Kate Moss loves it.

Remember blanket jackets? They're back, too, as part of the forthcoming 70s revival, thanks to the likes of Burberry Prorsum. Get something with an elegant shape. Otherwise you could be mistaken for a walking picnic rug. Zips became a fashion item in the 70s and now they're back in the designs of Balenciaga, Givenchy and Stella McCartney. You'll find them on the front of dresses or used to decorate boxy tops to give structure and style. Keep accessories and jewellery to a minimum and let the zips do the talking.

Is there nothing new in fashion? You'd think combining grid prints and tartan was pretty novel but in fact they were doing it 40 years ago. Now the combination is back again, thanks to Westwood, Vera Wang and Kenneth Cole. Make sure you have some monochrome in the mix to tone down the prints.

It's a sad fact that the complexion that we took for granted in our youth won't stay unlined and flawless for ever. The good news is that there's a lot you can do to limit the march of time and so look great whatever your age.

It's time to start serious damage limitation — sun exposure and late nights can result in age spots and early lines, particularly crow's feet around the eyes. Cell turnover and collagen and elastin production are already starting to slow down so dead cells on the surface can leave skin looking grey and flaky.
Your skin-care routine should be all about prevention. Use a daily cleanser, a daily SPF-infused moisturiser, a nourishing night cream and an eye cream.

Skin oil glands are becoming less active and cell turnover is slowing down even more, resulting in drier duller-looking skin. As well as separate protective day and repairing night creams, a daily eye cream is an absolute must. You could also think about a DIY microdermabrasion kit to work on boosting cell renewal.

A word of warning: don't over-stimulate the skin by trying out lots of different products or applying too much.

By now any past sun exposure will show up in the form of increased lining or patchy pigmentation. Don't use harsh products that strip the skin of moisture and always use a skin protection cream whether it's sunny or cloudy. Incorporate a facial massage into your daily routine - by boosting circulation, blood-flow and delivering oxygen to the skin you should see an immediate glow.

Sebaceous and skin renewal activity drastically slows down. Add hormonal changes and you'll be looking at lack of firmness, fallen moisture levels, thinning skin and uneven pigmentation. So it's high time for a targeted skincare regime based around firming products with high levels of vitamins which will boost collagen levels and firm and brighten your face. Remember that your neck chest and hands are also age giveaways so add hand and neck-care creams to your skincare shopping list.        


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