Wednesday, August 11, 2010

"10 Years Younger - The Challenge" consigned to the bin

It was made over a year ago and is now seeing the light of day at the strange daily time of 5pm. Channel 4's "10 Years Younger - the Challenge" has clearly reached the end of the road.

The rot set in when presenter Nicky Hambleton-Jones was dismissed in favour of the bland Myleene Klass. Klass isn't a stylist so she brings nothing to proceedings. The way she is forever grabbing the contestants is very irritating. A mysterious "team of stylists" does the dressing part which makes the show unbalanced. They clearly buy the clothes without the contestants trying them on. In one show this week, a contestant didn't like the garish colours but nothing else was provided. She even had to wear the clothes she didn't like in her "after" montage.

As for the contestants: well. They've all been mostly in their 5Os. To my mind they don't deserve the makeovers they get. Could they never get to a dentist? Have they never heard of a hairdresser? If they bought at least one women's magazine a month they would surely improve their dress sense.

But this show has always been about the dramatic transformations. So the worst they look at the start, the better.

A new dentist was hired at the same time as Klass and I think her results are dreadful. She goes for the big white US smile, which looks unnatural on these older women. And as we're told the dentistry usually costs around £19k, and veneers often last for only 10 years, I hope these women will be able to afford it when they're left with blackened stumps.

Shows about plastic surgery are less popular than they were. Extreme Makeover has been cancelled in the US. So 10 Years Younger added the twist of one contestant having surgery and the other having a non-surgical transformation. But really, as soon as their hair and make-up is done properly, and they wear decent clothes, they already look 10 years younger.

Tuesday, January 05, 2010

Good news for Victoria, Gwyneth et al: high heels are safer than trainers!

It's claimed today that training shoes are worse for your feet than wearing heels. The US study, carried out by Dr Casey Kerrigan from JKM Technologioes in Virginia, said trainers protect the feet from the impact of hitting the ground. But they then transmit that force into the ankle, knee and hip joints, setting the body up for future problems.

68 runners were surveyed, none of whom had a history of injury. It was found that wearing running shoes increased rotational stresses on the hip joints by 54% and heightened knee stresses by 36%.

So now the field's open for Nike or whoever to invent a running shoe with a wedge, heel or platform. Finally a running shoe that looks good and prevents joint stress.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

The appalling men in Sex & The City

I recently treated myself to the DVDs for all six series of Sex and the City and have been indulging myself with one or two episodes each evening.

I am currently with series 3, where Carrie meets Aidan. I recall how Sarah Jessica Parker was surprised when Jonathan Ross, on his show, said Carrie was very needy. She didn't believe it. But it's so true! It makes you cringe how she is with Big and Aidan.

I also got thinking about the various lovers. Somehow nearly all the men seem wrong to me. Aidan and Carrie never looked right together. I used to have doubts about Big but he just about pulls it off. Miranda and Steve, a big no. Personality-wise he is a good match, laid back to her control freak. But he looks shorter and somehow they just didn't look right together. Charlotte and Harry: no no no! And Smith and Samantha: ok for a one night stand, unlikely for a relationship.

Am I the only one who thinks this? What do you think?

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

If only beauty editors told the truth

I recently purchased the new "wonder product" from Dior, a snip at £95, Capture Totale Radiance Enhancer.

Based on the magazine ads featuring Sharon Stone, I was expecting "instant luminosity" with a potion applied under or over foundation.

Instead, the confusing leaflet doesn't really say what this product actually is, but advises you to use it over your Capture Totale cream (of course) and then follow with Capture Totale powder (of course).

The enhancer is a similar colour and texture to foundation which somewhat threw me. I first tried it over my face cream, with nothing else. There was no noticeable difference.

I've since tried it over my face cream and under my foundation. It isn't good for this: I find that my Smashbox Photo Finish foundation primer is far superior, giving a more radiant flawless finish.

It's very disappointing given that this product is expensive and has extravagant claims. "Its secret: the patented Alpha-Longoza Complex, based on a rare revitalizing plant grown only in Madagascar" is supposed to "corrects all signs of visible aging: wrinkles, lack of firmness, dark spots".

If only beauty editors told the truth. Instead they quote verbatim from press releases for fear of biting the hand that feeds them - the multinational cosmetic companies. And the adverts themselves make ridiculous claims based on tiny samples of women. One of the big companies was recently fined by the ASA for testing on its own staff, who were bound to give the product glowing testimonials.

In the latest Dior ad, the small print says the product was tested on 60 women for between one and two months. Hardly scientific, is it?

In future I will only try new and expensive products when I've read reviews by real people online. Hopefully these will start to proliferate and send a powerful message to the likes of Dior, Estee Lauder and so on. I never choose a holiday now without checking out Expedia. Power to the people!

Friday, April 10, 2009

How are you ageing today?

Check out this quiz at if you want to find out how well you are ageing.

I scored 75 which is interpreted as: You are aging like a Giant Tortoise. Your immune system is your friend and has little interest in attacking you--at the moment. It’s possible to improve upon your success and make your immune system work even better. There are several steps you can take to slow down the aging process and live a longer, healthier life. Learn on!

One thing I did learn from the quiz is that it's better to take your multivitamin before your main meal of the day - and an hour before, rather than at breakfast time.

Friday, March 27, 2009

The quest for Lypsyl

I was on the hunt for Lypsyl the other day - you know, the lip salve that's been around forever. I love the taste and the fact that it HAS been around for years. I'm always hankering after the beauty products of yesteryear. I wonder endlessly what happened to them. Did their formulas die a death or are they stored somewhere waiting for a revival?

I think about all the thousands of perfumes that have disappeared over time. Remember in the 7Os the ubiquitous Kiku and Aqua Manda from Faberge? And products like "Glow 5" from Anne French, brands like Outdoor Girl and Woolworths' Evette; Tangee lip sticks that magically changed colour (SmashBox have a brilliant cheek stain based on the same premise).I loved a perfume called Lumiere by Rochas but it disappeared.

Anyway, back to Lypsyl. I couldn't find it in Boots or Sainsburys so was starting to fear it had gone the same way as Albion Milk of Sulphur soap, for example. So I was thrilled to find it in the local Somerfield of all places. And in a twin pack with a strawberry flavoured variant!

Anyway, a bit of judicious searching on Google revealed that you can buy Lysyl online fairly easily. It apparently originated in Sweden over 100 years ago and there is a Swedish variant with different packaging and formulas. It was acquired by a distributor Lorna Mead in 2000 with worldwide distribution rights "excluding the UK and Norway." Interesting. I see that Chemists Direct sell the original for 7Op plus strawberry, cherry and mint varieties.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Three good "I Told You So" celebrity splits

Three leading ladies broke up with their men last week, and I bet the cry of "I told you so!" was heard all over UK and USA.

Jennifer Aniston was apparently kicked into touch (again) by the slimeball John Mayer. Every time they have been pictured together, the evil photo editors have chosen pictures where Jen is gazing at Mayer, who is always looking vacantly into space. Is there a brain thing going on? I mean, has he actually got one?

The likes of Grazia, Heat at el,plus "Jen's closest friends," as the magazines always say, have been urging the poor girl to give him up for ages. I said a few weeks ago that it was time Jen's PR people started to spin stories in her favour, and it seems they're finally doing it. With classic bad timing, She magazine coaches us on Jennifer's five tips for happiness. Hurrah, they're finally trying to position Jen as a happy, fulfilled individual rather than a desperate lonely 40-something who still pines for the vacuous Brad.

Another lady with a blighted love life has kicked her fiance into touch. Geri Halliwell got engaged after a whirlwind romance and sadly we all knew it wouldn't last. He was some wealthy Italian. It had all the hallmarks of a Geri romance. Infatuation and then over familiarity and the realisation that he isn't Mr Right. At least the girl moves on quickly and doesn't prolong the agony.

And the final casualty was the frankly rather loathsome Kerry Katona (who?). Originally famous for being an ex-Atomic Kitten and winner of I'm A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here, Kerry's life has been car crash TV ever since. Her solution to a weight problem is radical liposuction. She continued being the housewife face of Iceland's TV adverts despite being outed as a drug addict and bad mother. Her mother and friends constantly tell the tabloids evil stories for money. And then she married some low life, Mark Croft, who has apparently taken the dim girl to the cleaners. It seems she's been rejected by Iceland too in favour of the more wholesome Coleen Nolan.

The next celeb marriage to founder, in my view, will be that of Liz Hurley (oh how she hates the abbreviation from Elizabeth to Liz) and Arun Nayer. One of the papers said tellingly that Arun is finding his wife cold and obsessed with advancing her social position. Piers Morgan tells in his latest autobiography how he and a group of editors and schmoozers voted Hurley into the top 10 of the worst divas. He remarked that apart from wearing that safety pinned Versace dress, what has she ever done? And yet she has terrible airs and graces. Not bad for a girl from Basingstoke!