What to wear on the Beach

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Since we’re on this lovely beach with nothing much else to do, here are some observations on what looks good on 40 plus women.

A smile. This is without a doubt the best accessory and one which makes you glow inwardly, appear younger and look as if you are having more sex than everyone else. Forget how you look, confidence is all you really need on a beach, which can be a competitive environment. Everyone is so busy looking to see if you are rich/famous/beautiful/thin/wearing a better swimsuit that a smile is completely unexpected and infers you're above all this body neurosis stuff.

A bikini. All the women on this beach over forty are wearing bikinis (except for me and I am regretting it) and look fantastic. This is the first time we’ve really noticed this move away from one-piece swimsuits, although it could be said we are looking harder this year to report back to you. The state of your body seems irrelevant, as both curvy and skinny bodies are on display but worn with the above mentioned confidence this doesn’t seem to matter.

A great hat. Older women know the sense of wearing a good hat as well as investing in good sunglasses; it shades the face for reading and keeps out too many sun rays, but also allows for more covert people watching. It also adds a touch of drama and makes you look as if you might be a little bit famous and are trying to hide (Eric Clapton was on our beach yesterday, sadly we did not recognise him as we thought he look liked a Columbian drug smuggler so the chance to chat passed us by. He was wearing a wide brimmed hat, so clearly even famous people like to people watch).

A mini kaftan. On a practical note, this is the cover up of the season for us. Note that it is short and definitely not the tent like cover-all we might be expected to wear. It should be slim cut, with long sleeves, reach to the top of the thigh and be slightly transparent. Detail should come from a loosely ruffled neck, long, interestingly cuffed sleeves, embellishment (sequins and big coloured diamante gems), embroidery ( either tone-on-tone or very bright colours) and fringing, with block colours being popular, particularly colbalt blue, optic white and violet. The best ones are in chiffon (double layers) Indian cotton and silk. Brands being worn included La Perla, Liz Hurley (but watch the sizing apparently), Marilyn Moore, Juliet Dunn, Heidi Klein and DKNY.

Fabulously giant cocktail rings and bangles. As mentioned in our previous post earrings and necklaces or any proper jewellery look a bit ‘over blinged’ this year, and we’re preferring the theatrical look of costume jewellery, particularly colourful oversized rings and brightly hued bangles.

Pretty flip flops. What joy, the best looking shoes are definitely flat ones. As we mentioned yesterday, we're a bit worried about the state of shoes currently and although a few gorgeous twenty something girls have brought high heels to wear in the evenings, they look embarrassingly misplaced, as if they are on their way to a conference/drag queen convention and have got a bit lost. Pretty flip flops and flat leather, vaguely gladiator inspired, easy to slip on flats win the day.   

Also….We've been using Neal's Yard orange flower decollete gel over the last week and can thoroughly recommend it for softening and firming the neck and bust area, might be an idea to start using it a couple of weeks before you hit the beach.

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