HOW COURTENEY COX LOOKS SO GOOD AT 60 (BE WARNED, IT’S NOT FOR THE FAINT-HEARTED)

Ageing is a privilege, but for those determined to defy the passage of time, the to-do list can feel never-ending. Just when you were feeling on top of things because you’d dyed your roots, lifted your weights and run your mandatory 3/5/10K, along comes Courteney Cox, speaking in tongues about procedures you’ve never heard of while appearing to climb out of a freezer wearing a tiny black bikini. What fresh hell is this? And will it give you abs like Courteney? It will? In which case, fling open the Miele and cast those Quorn escalopes aside: midlife crisis woman is coming through. 

When Cox, who turned 60 in June, recently shared an Instagram reel with her 51.1 million followers in which she stated: “Don’t love the number, but just gotta do the best you can”, it was immediately apparent that her “best” far exceeded the efforts of most sane people. After performing the sort of gruelling workout that would challenge Joe Wicks, she emerged from her freezer wearing a sheet mask and a black baseball cap twinkling with red LED lights. Reaction was swift and decisive. “60 has NEVER looked better!” said one user. “You look better than me, and I’m 28,” said another.

While Cox’s video was short, sweet and self-deprecating in that particularly modern way that simultaneously manages to solicit compliments, it also left the internet wanting to know more about how, exactly, she achieves such undeniably fine results. We asked the experts. 

LED Therapy

LED facial treatments are fairly mainstream, and run the gamut from face masks to handheld lasers such as Lyma, which can be used at home. Red light is primarily used for its anti-ageing, regenerative effects: lesser known are its benefits to the scalp. With hair loss and thinning often an issue in the over sixties, trust clued-up Cox to be an early adopter of HigherDOSE’s red light therapy cap. 

Launched last month, it looks as insouciant as a baseball cap, but packs a therapeutic punch: fans claim that ten minutes of use will help increase blood flow to the scalp, strengthening roots and reducing shedding. While results won’t be seen for four weeks, the device should prove useful for overscheduled multitaskers such as Cox. 

The Friends alum is also a fan of an infrared sauna, once posting a photo of herself and her dog basking under its glow. According to Sarah Jones St John, founder of private members’ wellness club Grey Wolfe, these have specific anti-ageing benefits that make them ideal for older people.

“Whilst traditional saunas raise air temperature to a very high level to warm the body, infrared saunas work differently, heating the body directly,” she says. “This results in deeper tissue penetration. As well as their collagen-boosting properties, use of infrared saunas facilitates the release of toxins, purifying the skin and improving the appearance of fine lines. It’s a gentler, more effective heat which penetrates the body on a cellular level, stimulating white blood cells and resulting in deep detoxification and healing.” 

At Grey Wolfe, the recommended programme is 3-5 times a week for up to six weeks, depending on individual skin condition and budget.  

Cryotherapy

No need to empty your own freezer: so popular is whole body cryotherapy that dedicated chambers are now fairly commonplace at health clubs and beauty salons. Much like wild swimming in November (but more Instagrammable and extreme), the chamber’s freezing temperatures (cooled to -200 or -300 degrees Fahrenheit) are said to help improve anxiety, muscle recovery, arthritis and chronic pain, as well as aiding weight loss.

I have tried this, and can confirm that while you do enter wearing nothing more than a sports bra and pants, gloves, socks and earmuffs are mandatory (to protect your extremities). Is it freezing? Yes, but far less unpleasant than one might expect. After three minutes, you’re done: I felt euphoric afterwards, though also very cold. 

Cox is also a fan of ice baths, and while neither these nor cryotherapy are inherently dangerous for the over sixties, any treatment involving icy temperatures should be used with caution, particularly for those unaccustomed to them. According to cold water immersion expert Professor Mike Tipton, 60 per cent of deaths in cold water happen in the first minute of immersion. Anyone with a heart condition should avoid.  

Exercise

Cox’s regime might be extreme, but it’s also effective. “Over 60, the biggest health issue is muscle related,” says Caroline Idiens, fitness coach and founder of online training platform Caroline’s Circuits. “Losing muscle mass from 35 onwards requires us to strength train, which not only builds lean muscle, but is also beneficial for future bone, brain and heart health, as well as balance, posture, flexibility, immunity, mental health and sleep.” 

Idiens recommends 30 minutes of strength-based exercises three times a week. “As we see with Courteney, these can be bodyweight resistance exercises, or by using weights such as her kettlebell squats. The key is to keep the challenge on with the weights, and incorporating functional movements such as squats, which work more than one muscle group at a time. These exercises will be hugely beneficial as we age, as they reduce the risk of falls and injuries.”

She also endorses Cox’s use of gym resistance machines. “These target the larger muscle groups – the legs, back, chest – again, exercises which will improve our bone density. Core work is so important as we age, helping us with our balance and posture, but also helping to prevent lower back pain and injuries.”

While she agrees that Cox’s cardio efforts on the treadmill are highly effective, Idiens suggests those less fit than Cox should begin with lower impact versions such as walking, swimming or cycling, particularly if they’re experiencing joint pain. “The key is consistency, and remembering to include recovery and a balanced diet for optimum results.”

Face

One of few celebrities to speak candidly of her regret over using fillers, Cox detailed in a podcast last year how “I think I messed up a lot. You don’t realize that you look a little off, so then you keep doing more – it’s a domino effect”. 

According to Dr Wassim Taktouk of The Taktouk Clinic in Knightsbridge, London, more natural options are available, including so-called “stealth fillers” that are far less visible than their predecessors. “Fillers are still very popular; it’s just that practitioners are getting smarter and using “stealth” filler. Products like RHA (resilient hyaluronic acid) blend into the tissues and move with them. This is an upgrade from the traditional hyaluronic acid offerings.”

“I would recommend Ameela,” he adds. “This involves injection of polynucleotides which hydrate the skin, stimulate collagen, neutralise free radicals and improve blood flow. The polynucleotides are sourced from wild Alaskan salmon. They are great skin quality improvers without volumising.” 

Alice Hart-Davis, founder of The Tweakment Guide, says at 61, it’s a case of less is more. 

“There’s a myth that tweakments ‘don’t work’ once you’re 60, which couldn’t be further from the truth. Skin boosters such as Profhilo (you’ll need two rounds of treatment from £350 each), where a layer of lasting hydrating serum is injected just beneath the surface of the skin, will give back to mature skin some of the smoothness and radiance that menopause strips away, without changing the shape of your face at all.”  

Sheet Masks

Now filler-free, Cox looks after her skin through less invasive means – one of which, it appears, is sheet masks. While hers are likely to be imbued with the harvested placenta of first-born unicorns, the good news for those on a budget is that a sheet mask can be picked up for under a fiver from Superdrug, whose Me+ Hyaluronic Acid Sheet Mask purports to plump and firm skin (£2.99). For a night-time fix, Garnier’s Moisture Bomb Night Time Face Tissue Mask (£3.49) has 915 five-star reviews. 

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2024-07-09T19:03:56Z dg43tfdfdgfd