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Superpowers

As a pre-adolescent I spent many a Saturday morning drooling over Dean Cain’s lycra-clad chest in The New Adventures of Superman, feeling green with envy as he scooped up Teri Hatcher and they flew into the distance. I also watched Disney’s Aladdin on repeat, marvelling at the genie, three wishes and magic carpet ride. Then, Hollywood began to represent magically strong women with the likes of Halle Berry as Catwoman or the pink and yellow Power Rangers.

 Magical powers and the supernatural surround us in popular culture – from comics to movies and gaming to TV – and it all begs the question: what would I do if I had a superpower?

Asking round the office here at This Works, the girls’ reactions were varied to say the least. Janet would have the ability to turn back time, so you could know what was coming and plan accordingly, “That way you could get the lottery numbers!” she laughed. Claire added to this, “I think I’d choose the ability to create time.” Sounds like the demands of a toddler are very time-consuming!

Tara showed her dark side and said she’d “Maybe want to control people. You know, to manipulate reactions or feelings.” And Oliya declared, “I’d have the power to be at peak physical fitness without ever having to go to the gym or buy expensive skincare products!” For me, a suspicious soul, I think I would put invisibility to very good use…

The consensus seemed to be, however, that the superpower of going back and correcting mistakes would be the ultimate one. While I don’t believe in having regrets, I do agree it would be nice to revisit those little moments when I said something really daft, tripped over on the treadmill or threw up in my handbag on a train (all 100% true, I’m afraid). Understandably, memories like that really make me squirm!

Sadly, superpowers don’t really exist and we can’t go back in time to change how we did things. It’s up to us to do things the best way possible first time round. That includes looking after our physical and mental health – meaning lots of sleep, regular exercise and a good skincare regime, using products that use plenty of natural actives. To the last point, we’ve got the perfect thing, as close to a superpower product as they come to moisturise, soothe and protect young skin from premature ageing. Abracadabra!

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mina

Perfect eyes – the perfect way to cheer up

It is a truth universally acknowledged that most women sometimes need a good cry. Whether were upset about something or not, I’ve long believed that crying is a healthy way to free up the tension introduced by modern life.

Sometimes I just don’t stop, working really hard for weeks on end and with every spare moment spent busy with friends and family. The absence of “me time”, the strain of rushing around without much opportunity to relax, can build to a crescendo, ending in a good old cry. Been there? Of course you have, because it’s life! And it’s exhausting! Crying can sometimes feel like the only way to release stress.

There are also, of course, significant events – arguments, bad break-ups, bereavements – that serve as emotional triggers for crying. I’m sure many of us have felt drained after days of sobbing following heartbreak for example. Luckily, the old adage that time heals all wounds is true, but it is important to have little perks that pull us together in the shorter term…

A long dog walk often does it for me, especially if there’s a breeze and the sun is out. There is something very uplifting about being in nature. Sometimes it’s music, a decent session singing along to the greatest hits of Whitney Houston, or playing air guitar to Prince (long live the ’80s!). Other times, I’ll crave a glass of red wine and a hot aromatherapy bath, the perfect combination to pamper me inside and out.

We all have our creature comforts that sort us out when weve been crying, but whatever yours is, make sure it is soothing. Sleep is integral to our mental and physical wellbeing, so rest is always my priority when I feel blue. If you dont feel good, you certainly won’t look good – think puffy eyes, dark circles and dull skin. Skincare products full of natural actives that heal and reduce inflammation, like Aloe Vera and Arnica, are a good start to combating the physical effects of crying.

As someone who has suffered insomnia, I do know however that getting enough beauty sleep isn’t always easy. Realising this, we’ve brought out our own quick fix “crying cream” that de-puffs and revives cried-out and tired eyes with Aloe Vera, Arnica and Cucumber. This cooling formula instantly revives your eye area and brightens the face. We all need to cry sometimes, so we figured its good to help you prepare.

What’s your answer to crying and feeling sad? Whether its a spa day, a good film or a lovely meal out, were interested to know what your perfect cheer up would be.

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mina

How has ageing changed you?

As part of our perfect month, we’re bringing you eight This Works blog posts, each one linked to a benefit of a different perfect product. For perfect hands, for example, we look at ageing, and for perfect eyes we explore crying. It’s an opportunity for you to share your own experiences and opinions about modern natural beauty concerns with us and other This Works users.

“Age ain’t nothin’ but a number,” said the singer, Aaliyah. Talking to women of all ages, I realise this little sound bite carries a lot of truth. We are scared of gaining miles on the clock, but why? Does age really matter?

Throughout their lives, women are preoccupied with ageing. Most teenage girls can hardly wait to turn eighteen, gaining freedom from those years of angst about love, looks, friendships and future.

Next you hit your twenties and you start to dread the onset of thirty, a looming milestone on the horizon. You nervously start analysing your face for fine lines and wrinkles, and worry that you’re not engaged yet (or worse – shock, horror – you don’t even want to get engaged!)

Then something else happens. You turn thirty and breathe a sigh of relief. My friend Emma put it perfectly, “I was so terrified about my 30th. But when I woke up on my birthday I just thought, ‘thank goodness that’s all over.’ In your thirties you know more about what you want out of life.”

So much of what we dread about getting old relates to our looks. We are frightened of the ageing process, wrinkles emerging, our busts heading south and our hair turning grey. While all of this is ultimately inevitable, age also brings with it some fantastic qualities like wisdom, self-knowledge and the ability to seize the day.

The media wants women to look like eighteen year olds, but very few of us would say we were the happiest we’ve ever been at eighteen, would we?

I certainly wouldn’t want to return to my teenage years, although I do sometimes think I’d like to preserve the looks of my youth while enjoying the benefits of growing older and wiser.

There are obvious ways of slowing the physical onset of age, which you’ll find easily on the This Works website. We say to stay out of the sun, wear a hat, an SPF and use natural skin care containing actives like Retinol that really work.

Another excellent tip from This Works MD, Dr Anna Persaud, is to moisturise and apply SPF to your hands. “You can have flawless facial features at forty,” says Anna, “but if you haven’t looked after your hands, the wrinkles and pigmentation will be a real giveaway.”

The new This Works perfect range  helps you celebrate who you are, including your age. That’s why I like it. It answers my unique beauty needs, and frees me up to enjoy getting older while helping to keep my skin feeling young.

I’ve just had my birthday and, although I dreaded it yet again, I am noticing a pattern. I’m becoming more at peace with myself the older I get. How has ageing changed you?