COOL & CON­FI­DENT

Chang­ing course mid-life takes courage – but it may prove to be your best move yet. Think you could rise to the chal­lenge? Trust TENA Lady to let you be you

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‘Now my love of fash­ion is back, my style is def­i­nitely im­prov­ing with age’

There’s noth­ing like a land­mark birth­day to make you take stock. But even mi­nor ad­just­ments take con­fi­dence, espe­cially if you’re wor­ried that blad­der weak­ness might get in your way. Thanks to ul­tra-dis­creet pro­tec­tion, TENA Lady lets you be you, what­ever you de­cide to do. ‘I re­mem­ber my 40th birth­day,’ con­fides Nikki Ni­cola, now 44. ‘I was in a dress that wasn’t ex­actly loose, I had high blood pres­sure and wanted to be healthy. I went on to lose three stone that year.’ As the weight dropped off, her love of fash­ion resur­faced. ‘I got more con­fi­dent in the clothes that I’d al­ways wanted to wear but was never brave enough to,’ she says. Now her In­sta­gram feed @40not­frumpy in­spires other mid-life women to re­dis­cover their con­fi­dent selves. ‘Now that my love of fash­ion is back, my style is im­prov­ing with age,’ says Nikki.

STYLE TIPS Great style is about keep­ing it sim­ple.

Dress for your shape by find­ing clothes that flat­ter and ac­cen­tu­ate your favourite parts of your body. Then work out which colours suit you best. ‘I have a warm skin tone, so warm colours suit me, not pastels,’ says Nikki. ‘Go for good-qual­ity fab­rics where pos­si­ble. Thin, cheap fab­ric is not flat­ter­ing. An ad­van­tage of be­ing older is that you can af­ford to spend a lit­tle more on your clothes – and be­lieve me, it’s worth it.’ Stick to clas­sic shapes and styles but up­date them with a bold pair of ear­rings or shoes. It’s more bud­get­friendly than up­dat­ing your wardrobe all the time!

DRESS TO IM­PRESS What are the wardrobe es­sen­tials that Nikki re­lies on?

‘A great pair of jeans, good-qual­ity tees, a blazer, white pumps – all clas­sics that can be dressed up or down,’ she says. What’s her go-to feel­good sta­ple? ‘Some­thing clean and sim­ple, but with edgy ac­ces­sories, such as train­ers or colour­ful shoes. I love wear­ing leop­ard print when I go out, and jump­suits, too. They’re so easy to wear and do all the hard work for you. Then I add a state­ment bag or chunky ear­rings. Luck­ily, age is no longer a bar­rier to fash­ion. I never think “I can’t wear that be­cause I’m in my 40s” and I hap­pily shop in places I’ve al­ways loved. I still pay at­ten­tion to trends – I can’t help it – some­times you just have to adapt to them slightly. For ex­am­ple, I still wear ripped jeans, but I make sure the rips aren’t right up my leg. I’m al­ways learn­ing about what suits me and I stay away from the things I know just won’t. That’s re­ally my style phi­los­o­phy.’

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