What if you knew you could look six years younger by this evening and would spend less than $20? Yes, that’s the deal. Whether you’re going to a work party, a class reunion, or meeting someone, anyone, you want to impress, why settle for less? Here are some tricks gathered by my staff and those in the health, beauty and fashion industries.
*Drink a tall glass of water every two hours for the next six hours. You’ll increase the water in your body, which will make your skin look younger. You’ll also feel better since the muscles and joints of your body require water to move like a younger person.
*Look online or window shop at a department store to see the clothing styles that are worn by people years younger than you. You might not have the middle section to expose, but could find that short or long jackets, skinny or flared leg jeans are flattering and that you need more color. Try on a few daring outfits to get the feel of how it feels to be younger. Then return home and check out your wardrobe to see what items you can put together in new and youthful ways.
*Stand in front of a mirror and slouch. Now, correct your posture. Touch the part of your chest about three inches above the navel. Now pull your chest up, but lower your shoulders and check your image in the mirror. You already look much younger because erect posture is a youthful attribute.
*Pull in your tummy muscles and tuck your butt. Practice standing this way. Younger folks have tight middle muscles and you can too.
*Check how you walk. Do you lift your feet or move like you have no where to go? Young people always seem to be in a hurry. Try this. Walk around the block or your office building as if you’re very late for an appointment. Tuck your tummy and correct your posture at the same time.
*Change your hair. Sweep it forward, part it on the other size, tie a scarf around it. Do something you’ve been dreaming of, including getting hooked on hats. If you want to go over your budget, talk with your hair dresser about adding highlights or brightening the color of your hair. As we age, sometimes our facial colors become dull and hair streaked with gray can make us feel and look drab.
*Check your make up. When was the last time you had professional help with make up? Most department stores offer opportunities to update your look, and you need not buy anything. Or go on the Internet and search out make up (and hairstyles) that are trendy and fun. There are plenty of budget wise cosmetics at the drug store so that you can master a youthful look.
*Brighten your smile. You can talk with your dentist about teeth brightening options or use the home varieties. You can also wear a bright red lipstick, as long as your other make up supports the color. Red lipstick makes your teeth instantly look whiter.
*Get a youthful smile. Young people laugh and smile a lot, yet as we age, sometimes the daily grind grinds us right down. Read a funny book, read jokes on the Internet or watch a movie that makes you laugh. Practice your smile in the mirror and as you go through the day, keep wearing it.
*Exercise. Make fitness part of your every day to stay youthful and reduce excess body fat. You don’t have to run, jog or lift weights, but you do need to find a plan that’s fun. If you work alone or at home, a fitness class at the gym will connect you with others. If you’re busy and surrounded by people all day long, a solitary walk, swim or cycle might balance your life.
*Eat better than a youthful person. Yes, teenagers and young adults eat too much fat, too many calories and think that their bodies can handle it. As we mature, we realize that’s not true. For this day, at least, select foods that support your young lifestyle, such as fresh fruits, delicious vegetables and low-fat protein.
*Take chances. Experiment trying new foods, new movies and books, or starting new hobbies. Mingle with groups you may not know well. Volunteer in your community, especially in places where there will be lots of young people. You’ll have a grandstand view of what youth does, says and wears, and you’ll pick up tips you might want to use.
*Watch what you say. Banish terms like, “senior moment,” and phrases like, “I’m getting old” from your speech. Replace them with, “Sounds like fun” and “I like new things.”
You can look six years younger by tonight with these tips, and best yet, you can repeat them tomorrow as you stay fit for life.
Sheila Cluff, fitness expert, television celebrity and owner of The Oaks at Ojai, is the author of Take 5: How You Can Benefit from Just Five Minutes of Daily Exercise and The Ultimate Recipe for Fitness by Sheila and Eleanor Brown. Visit Sheila’s Spa on the Internet and see all that’s happening at the resort: The Oaks at Ojai www.oaksspa.com.