Buy her (and I do say buy although I recognise the 3% of you who will make her a macaroni necklace) something useful. Something that spoils her obviously, but also maybe even exposes her to new and fantastic skin, or a lively, youthful new lipstick. In all likeliness, it will be something she may never have thought to buy for herself, and that's always a good gift, isn't it? What a good child you are! The favourite, I'm sure.
Here are three things I recommend for your gorgeous mum next Sunday.
A DELIGHTFUL MASSAGE
I agree, it's big stinkin cliche, but not many mum's sashay off for a massage on their own accord. Chuck in some acupuncture or reflexology or kinesiology maybe, for somthing different? And what about a service that comes to her? I am most partial to the mobile massage industry, and recommend these guys in Sydney. Cheap and excellent.
A POWERFUL SKIN SERUM OR CREAM
Something she can pop on at night before bed that will work lessen the look of her wrinkles, but more than that, (because wrinkles aren't even that big a deal in my books, it's MUCH more about even skintone) her skin will look radiant, smooth and plump. Alive! Gloriously alive. How wonderful. Choose products that have retinol, preferably. (Retinol: A vitamin A derivative which is viewed as the holy grail ingredient of anti-ageing. There is also the much stronger older sister, prescription-required retinoids.) It has been proven that retinol will make a difference to her skin. Retinol stimulates the skin to generate hyaluronic acid and collagen, which makes the skin plump and firm, but it also lightens pigmentation, slows down inflammation, exfoliates for smooth skin texture and reduces appearance of pore-size. Whether or not it will feed the cat remains inconclusive.
Maybe not for her if she: has rosacea or very sensitive skin.
Make sure she: Doesn't apply it through the day; wears broad spectrum sunscreen every day.
Options: REN Bio-Retinoid Anti-Ageing Concentrate, Ultraceuticals Ultra A Skin Perfecting Serum, AVON Anew Clinical PRO Line Eraser Treatment L'Oreal Revitalift Face, Contours & Neck, ROC Retonil Correxion Deep Wrinkle Serum and La Cerise Organic Retinol Serum.
Just on that AVON one, here's me talking about it, or rather why it is has been such a big deal on A Current Affair last week:
SOME PINK LIPSTICK
Even if she is a dedicated nude babe or red lipstick vixen. Just try it. Pink lipstick is an instant face brightener, and is terribly youthful. I know you're there saying, "Oh, you don't know my mum," and you're right, I don't, even though I'm sure we'd get on famously, but there is a spectrum of pink she can choose from, varying from the soft corals to the bold berry pinks. And I don't know a woman alive who wouldn't appreciate a beautiful fancy new lipstick to sass around, whether she thinks of it as a face-changer or not. (Go Chanel or Tom Ford if you're feeling splurgy.)
A basic key:
If she is cool skin-toned and most suits/wears silver jewelery, go for blue-based pinks like raspberries, mauve, fucshia, fairy floss (pale versions thereof, probably...) and magentas. Try MAC Lovelorn, Bobbi Brown Lip Gloss in Cosmic Pink or Revlon Colorstay Ultimate Suede in Muse.
Wears gold jewellery? Tans easily? Go for warm pinks, those that are rose or orange-based. Try: Illamasqua (don't know how to pronounce that? Read this) in Scandal or Elizabeth Arden Ceramide lipstick in Melon.
Confused? Lancome L'Absolu Rouge in Voile de Rose suits every skin tone.
A NEW HAIR STYLE OR MAKEUP TECHNIQUE
Mums are the best but often they're in a makeup or hair rut. It's true! It is. Even a lot of us are. So, maybe this is an oppurtunity to gently show her a flattering new path.
In terms of hair, a cut and blow dry is such a dazzling confidence booster. Maybe she could get some layers cut around the face to soften things? Or what about some highlights? They really lift and lighten up the face. Like the pink lipstick, very youthy. Even just some around the face might be nice? Or, you could just shout her a semi if she doesn't want anything permenant. Washes away in 6-8 weeks but adds incredible shine. Plus, it means she can try life with auburn or mahogany or mulberry hair for a bit. Outrageous!
Napoleon Perdis' rather awesome Woollahra Lifestyle store.
Has furniture, accessories, great carpet, and of course, makeup.
If she has the hair situation quite under control thank you very much, maybe send fancy pants to get her eyebrows shaped, (keep them thick! And have them tinted) or to a wonderful makeup counter for a beautiful makeup. In Sydney and Melbourne, the Napoleon Perdis Lifestyle stores or the Chanel beauty boutiques are hard to beat. Also Bobbi Brown counters are very non-scary and helpful. Plus, the cost is usually redeemable on product... cue pink lipstick?
SHOES MADE FROM BULBOUS SUMMER CLOUDS
For her poor tired feet, of course.