My Midlife Survival Kit: Anne-Marie Curtis

Fashion, beauty and sustainability are key elements for midlife survival, says the former Elle editor and founder of sustainable Instagram glossy The Calendar.

When we think about ‘what is middle age?’ here at Hylda, we think of it as a time of shifts and opportunities. Our priorities change. Our values change. (And yes, our hormones change a lot as well.) What is middle age? Something to be cherished.

Anne-Marie Curtis exemplifies these shifts and changes. The former editor-in-chief of Elle UK, she has launched The Calendar Magazine. At the heart of her new project is a mission to encourage us all to shop and live more sustainably. What is middle age for Anne-Marie? A time of showcasing her passion for a way of life that is more sustainable, that makes a positive impact but that doesn’t lose a sense of joy and love along the way. It’s a new way of looking at things – and we love it. 

As you can see from Anne-Marie’s Midlife Survival Kit, a sustainable life isn’t a life of deprivation. It’s about considered choices and objects that bring a sense of pleasure and purpose. We approve. (And we want one of those LED light masks…)

Hayo’u Rose Quartz Morning Massage Tool, £38

Hayo'u Rose Quartz

The last facial I had was in March 2020, before the first lockdown. Luckily for me it was with the wonderful Katie Blake, who works with the brilliant Katie Brindle, founder of the Hayo’u beauty method based on ancient Chinese medicine principles.

I took away a little rose quartz beauty restorer tool with me and it has been a revelation. Following the directions Katie gave me and despite the lockdown lack of facials, it’s really helped keep my skin on track and is also incredibly relaxing and nurturing. I cannot recommend highly enough. There’s also a jade option should you wish, but I love anything rose so I’m sticking with that one.

Add It To Your Midlife Survival Kit

Sunday Riley Juno Antioxidant & Superfood Face Oil, £27

Sunday Riley

Alongside and to use with my rose quartz massage tool, a good face oil is now an essential part of my daily routine. There are so many out there but this one by Sunday Riley all the boxes.

It’s beautifully packaged, looks and feels luxurious and smells divine. At £27 for a bottle, I think it’s really good value. I love it so much, I’ve also bought it as gifts for a couple of friends.

Add It To Your Midlife Survival Kit

The Light Salon Boost LED mask, £395

LED Boost light mask

This is a recent beauty discovery for me. I suffer from occasional eczema on my face and would normally head to The Light Salon at Daniel Hesheshon. Their LED therapy really helps calm my skin, with visible post salon results.

As I could not visit the salon during lockdown, I decided to invest in the at-home Boost LED face mask. It was money well spent as I use it nearly every day. A 10-minute session feels like a mini holiday away from it all.

I also recently gave up coffee on the advice of my acupuncturist Ross Barr. He’d been saying it for years but I finally decided to make the change. It’s made a huge difference to my skin and my anxiety levels.

Add It To Your Midlife Survival Kit

Girlfriend Collective leggings, £65

Girlfriend Collective

I’ve been practising yoga for over 20 years now; I still can’t touch my toes (!) but the mental and physical benefits are enormous. Of course the right leggings always help too.

I’d been looking for a more sustainable option and found a brilliant brand Girlfriend Collective at Matches Fashion. Made from recycled polyester derived from plastic bottles, they are also the softest and best butt enhancing leggings I’ve come across…. which are equally important factors to consider! I’m a huge fan and am currently living in them.

Add It To Your Midlife Survival Kit

Simone Rocha pearl hoop earrings, £195

Simone Rocha earrings

I’m definitely buying less clothes these days. Both because my years as a fashion and magazine editor mean I have so much in my wardrobe already but also because I think our collective mindset is changing around consuming and thinking about what we buy.

The exception is earrings. Especially in a Zoom world where people can only see your top section: A good earring is great to just throw on and raise your screen game.

I’m obsessed with Simone Rocha’s design sensibility and aesthetic and her earrings have become something of a signature for me. They’re forever buys that you can wear with anything. These small hoop pearl ones are soon to be joining my collection.

Add It To Your Midlife Survival Kit

Anne-Marie is the founder of The Calendar Magazine, a curated edit of fashion, beauty and lifestyle and people and stories with a sustainable focus. Find them on IG @thecalendarmagazine. 

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