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Nigella wows at 60 - but lets celebrate similar aged ladies who shine without being so privileged

PUBLISHED: 16:08 09 January 2020 | UPDATED: 16:13 09 January 2020

Nigella Lawson, who turned 60 on Monday. Rachel Moore doesn't dispute her beauty, but says we should celebrate the women of this world who have achieved brilliant things in their later years and haven't had the same fortunate upbringing

Nigella Lawson, who turned 60 on Monday. Rachel Moore doesn't dispute her beauty, but says we should celebrate the women of this world who have achieved brilliant things in their later years and haven't had the same fortunate upbringing

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Rachel Moore says Nigella Lawson looks amazing at 60 but then she's never had to endure the lifestyle other woman of her age have

Well, good for her to sashay to 60 being stunning. She jolly well should be given her wealth, privilege, education and nutrition

As churlish as it might sound, it's getting tiresome having the likes of Nigella, Helen Mirren, Joan Collins, and every other glamorous youthful (multi) millionaire doing well for their age, being hailed as the latest wonder of the world for looking decades younger.

No one begrudges Nigella's pleasure at looking fabulous at 60, and her joy at outliving her mother, sister and first husband. She has had her fair share of tragedy. Fair dos.

But her sculpted cheekbones, luscious dark locks - she isn't even grey under the dye, she confesses - and skin that oozes six decades of the finest fresh fruit and veg and SPF 50 even on cloudy days, is down to a mix of luck, genes and wealth.

Not every woman has such good fortune.

There's no doubt she is beautiful, sexy, superbly preserved at an age that, six decades ago, would previously present itself in a neat tight perm, comfy shapeless frocks and sensible shoes.

We tell our daughters it's not all about looks - focus on achievement, ambition, kindness and endeavour - then we elevate the likes of Nigella to goddess status simply for simply looking younger than her years.

Give it a rest.

It's like saying the Queen is great for her age. She is - but she's had the best of everything to get there.

You wouldn't expect hers or Nigella's face to be etched with the deep lines of worry, poverty, poor diet, unemployment and anguish about not being able to afford to feed her family or pay the rent.

Good skin, health and fitness are not top priorities for most women fighting through life.

Their struggles leave their marks, not just on their face and skin, but their posture and their spirit. Their physique tells their story. They are weary and washed out, because that's real life.

While we clap like seals at a picture of Nigella exuding rude health and dewiness, I can't help thinking about all those hundreds of thousands of women left high and dry by pension age changes, who had expected to be retired and drawing their state pension, but now waiting four, five, six years longer than they planned.

Their 60s are being spent working to make ends meet and must look at Nigella thinking "lucky moo".

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Then the women losing their jobs at 60, when they have to work longer. Just this week, 3,150 staff lost their jobs in retail collapses at HMV, Debenhams, Mothercare and Links of London.

Nigella's life experiences are poles apart and photos tell just one side of the story.

Messing with women's expectations is cruel.

Let's celebrate 60 being the new 40, but not by smooth foreheads and glossy manes, but by achievements beyond age expectations - the people running their first marathons at 60, reinventing themselves, starting new careers, launching businesses, retraining, doing the extraordinary.

Let's celebrate that 60-plus women taking control of their own lives, winning their battles and survival. The women who triumph over knocks, who are gutsy and brave.

It's not about what they look like and how using the most expensive cream and eating the best food has preserved their skin.

Let's celebrate true grit, strength, determination, resourcefulness and ingenuity - real qualities of note rather than the luck and privilege of beauty and poise.

A quarter of committed couples remain living apart to stay independent, enjoying each other's company while keeping their own space, according to research.

More couples are refusing to cohabit but insist they are no less committed than couples under the same roof.

Whether they have neighbouring homes - or live on different sides of town - partners move between the two. Living Apart Together. It even has a name.

It works for me - four nights together, three nights apart. Time in the city, time in the country, and it saves on arguing on who compromises on their taste for home décor. Cosy clutter or minimalism is never an issue - we can have both in different homes.

For older people, this feels like the perfect relationship solution. So many second and third relationships fail. Lives are complex, compromise becomes more tricky the older we get, independence and space is important and doesn't take away their authenticity as a couple.

Having said that, marriage seems to be very much the thing again among the over 50s.

I'm excited for another wedding of a close friend this year, the fourth wedding I've been to in two years -more than the tally in my 20s.

I'm loving sharing the joy of second-time round weddings and their relaxed approach to how they do it.

Young first-timers could certainly learn some lessons about wedding planning from the "been there done it and will do it differently this time" brigade.

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