Beauty lives in Notting Hill

The real Notting Hill garden

The real Notting Hill garden

Alex is a 40-something beauty blogger, who just happens to live in Notting Hill, London. Yes, that Notting Hill of movie fame: the Notting Hill, starring Julia Roberts and Hugh Grant. In the movie, you may remember when our characters discover a charming hidden-away garden? That’s where Alex lives; near that very garden! But I digress … Alex has started a wonderful beauty destination filled with practical product nformation, especially designed for women over 40. And that’s important, because things happen to our skin as we age, and it’s a good idea to nurture and care for our skin properly. More from Alex …

MKG: Alex, what compelled you to start your blog, I Heart Beauty?

Alex:  I wanted to do something that fit in easily with having a young daughter, and blogging does that perfectly. It’s a great way to keep your brain ticking, learn new things, indulge an interest, and make contact with like-minded people.

MKG: Why focus on beauty products and information? Is your background in beauty?

Alex: My professional background is in the music and media industries, but I’ve been interested in beauty since I was a little girl. My father worked in advertising, handled a lot of beauty accounts, and was always bringing home interesting products for me to play with. He became Managing Director of Vidal Sassoon, and after that he had his own toiletry companies. Basically, it’s a world in which I have always been aware, and my passion for beauty products has never waned. In fact, if anything, it’s grown stronger over the years.

MKG: You say that you are a ‘slightly older woman‘ at 44. To me, that feels so young! What was missing out there, for you and for women in their 40s?

Alex: While there are blogs written by older women, there aren’t nearly as many as those written by the younger generation. It’s not necessarily that I felt something was missing for women in my age group, but more the case that I wanted to write about what I know. As we age, our beauty tastes and needs change and I wanted my blog to reflect that.

MKG: Do you think there is a connection between beauty routines and self-esteem?

Alex: Yes, I think there can be a strong connection. Feeling presentable can change the way we feel about ourselves tremendously. Speaking personally, it makes me feel more confident and ready to face the world. I also think, right or wrong, if you are well-groomed people will respond to you more positively, and that in turn boosts self-esteem.

MKG: You mention that you use products and brands that range from the high end to drugstore. What is happening with the quality of drugstore brands?

Alex: I have to admit that since I started blogging and trying out more beauty products, I have a growing preference for premium brands. I just feel that they are slightly more effective and more pleasant to use. Having said that, the product quality of drugstore brands has improved greatly over recent years, and not it’s quite easy to find cheaper alternatives to high end products.

MKG: Can you share some of your favorite brands?

Alex: At the moment, I am using products from more niche brands, such as Dermaviduals, NCN, Environ, and Zelens. I’m about to start using products from the ZO Skin Health and Medical ranges, which is exciting. I choose skincare that has effective ingredients and delivery systems and I try not to be tempted by hype or marketing. I admit, though, that I sometimes succumb to the latest serum, offering miraculous results!

MKG: What are the top 3 things a woman over 40 should know about her skin and how to protect it?

Alex: I think women over 40 need to accept that our skin is going to age, and there is only so much we can do to preserve it. We should feel happy and proud to be whatever age we are, so that we can enjoy each stage of our lives. Saying that, I think using a broad spectrum sunscreen daily is the best weapon against prematurely aging skin. Also, I think a nutritious diet (i.e good fats, lots of protein and vegetables and minimal sugar) along with moderate exercise, becomes even more important during our middle years, not only giving skin a healthy glow but it also helping to protect us against a host of age-related health problems.

Alex, The Beauty of Notting Hill

Alex, The Beauty of Notting Hill

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