I don’t seem to have got the immediate response to things I see in the media quite right yet!  Anyway, Sali Hughes wrote an article a couple of weeks ago about being almost 40, which to her is a landmark birthday.  To keep the years at bay she set out 25 non-surgical fixes to keep you looking young.  Apart from thinking, oh lordy, Sally, 40 is soooo young, it was great to read her take on plastic surgery – which was against.  But oh, my, some of her suggestions were expensive: you’d be paying between £100 to £800 for seven of her 25 recommendations.  So here are five anti-ageing suggestions costing not much at all.

1.   A good hair cut  The first thing Sali advises is get a fringe.  Yes, a fringe can hide a multitude of sins such as lines and wrinkles but, I would add a word of caution here.  I had a fringe for years and most of the time was very happy with it.  But there’s kind of a ubiquitous, mature woman’s hairstyle which is the short bob with a fringe the thicker the better to hide all the wrinkles etc., etc.  Just recently I have decided that I am no longer going to hide my face behind my fringe. My attitude is now, here is my face and here is my forehead.  This is how I am.  I. Am. Ageing, and, you know, that’s OK.   Of course, wear your hair whichever way suits you but the no fringe thing is just more of the message – don’t hide yourself away.

2.    Join a choir  Singing improves your breathing, keeps you on your toes learning the words and brings you new experiences like getting over stage fright!  I joined a choir over 4 years ago and, gosh my knees quaked when we started singing in front of an audience.  You also make new friends and that’s an added bonus.  Whatever music you like there’ll be a choir for you.  In a neighbouring town there are over 15 choirs of varying types but in my small town just the one.  We sing songs by the Beatles, Dylan, Simon & Garfunkel and slightly more contemporary pieces by Cold Play and Snow Patrol.  Our pièce de résistance is  (I kid you not) ‘I’m a Teenage Dirtbag, Baby’.  For two hours every Monday we sing our hearts out and for that we pay £5 a session.

3.    Avoid the sun You know my views on summer and the sun from a previous blog, but if you must sun-bathe always wear a good sun block on your face – as Sali advised go to Boots and find one for not much at all.

 4.    Eyebrows I don’t know about you but as I’ve aged my eyebrows have gone whiter and thinner, the thinness due, mainly, to me plucking all the white hairs until I realised this had to stop or I would not possess a pair of eyebrows at all!  A kindly beautician advised me to i) stop plucking and ii) to have them dyed.  Reader, I did both and my face is now topped by a pair of quite realistic dark eyebrows.  Cost – £15 for both dyeing and tidying and worth every penny.

 5.    Exercise, exercise, exercise  No need to state the obvious, but you’ve got to keep moving.  And you can do it in so many ways: gardening, walking, dancing around while doing the dusting.  We don’t have our newspaper delivered and as I must read a newspaper every day, whatever the weather I walk half a mile to the shops and back to get my daily fix.  All the above are free, but once a week I go to the Seniors’ Class at my local gym.  What a bargain!   We do an hour’s circuit training topped and tailed by warm-up exercises, followed by a swim, all for the princely sum of £4.45.  And they don’t treat you with kid gloves, oh, no.  Our class, of which I am definitely one of the youngest, is pushed hard and I can tell you I am less fit than some of the class members who have to be at least 10 to 15 years older than me!  What role models they are.

That’s all for now.  I’ve been away so there are no bargains of the week as there were no charity shops where I was staying.  I’ll see what I can find for the next blog!

With love


The frugal fashion shopper