Liz Jones’s Diary: In which I commit a cardinal sin 

I think I am going to seed, like a three-month-old pot of basil. I committed a cardinal sin this week: I used body oil on my face. I keep looking out for signs that this action has gone against all the laws of physics, nature and beauty editors. Perhaps my face now needs to wear socks, or trousers. But no, nothing so far. No alarms have gone off in the Harrods spa or inside Space NK, forcing an intervention.

Until this new low, I have spent a lifetime doing what the beauty industry tells me. I wore ParaSol on my hair even aged 11 on a windswept holiday in Sidmouth. I always cleansed and exfoliated. I only ever moisturised my legs using upward sweeps.

I’ve had fortnightly pedicures. I have never sunbathed and still, to this day, in the Yorkshire Dales mid-ice age, wear factor 30 tinted moisturiser. I’ve never gone to bed without removing my make-up: Clarins eye make-up remover, which has the consistency of tears.

My teeth are professionally cleaned by Martine McCutcheon’s Harley Street dentist; I have veneers, too. I’ve dyed my hair since I was 30. I never file my fingernails, as I read somewhere (Vogue?) that this damages the nail bed; instead, I clip them. I use growth serum on my lashes, which are professionally dyed.

I think I am going to seed, like a three-month-old pot of basil. I committed a cardinal sin this week: I used body oil on my face

I’ve had an eyebrow transplant; these, too, must be tinted to avoid me resembling the mad scientist from Back to the Future.

I have spent a lifetime doing what the beauty industry tells me 

I’ve had fat from my thighs injected into the backs of my hands (my hands and feet are, according to my ex-husband, my best feature; thanks). The capillaries on my face have been cauterised with a powerful laser and shrunk with the crushed shells of snails (before I was vegan).

I’ve had laser eye surgery, as I read somewhere (Vogue?) that squinting causes wrinkles. I have got through an ocean of fake tan. I had some freckles on my torso, so a consultant at the Lister Hospital, opposite Battersea Park, removed them at great expense: I remember later spying Kate Moss’s huge mole by her breast and thinking, ‘WTAF! How can she even live with herself?!’

And, of course, I have never unconsciously, since the age of 11, when a sister remarked on the number of calories in the marmalade on my toast, placed anything in my mouth without wondering if it will make me fat.

Jones Moans… What Liz loathes this week

Women who change their name when they marry. I’m too busy and important to learn a new email address!

A man you have never met messages to say, ‘Quick call when you have time, please.’ What a cheek! I replied, saying, ‘Who is this?’


And while I now, in a DPD non-delivery emergency, slather body oil on my face and décolletage, I still find eating very hard. I’ve just made pasta with chestnuts, thyme, lemon and hazelnuts, and most of it is still in the pan.

I might write in articles condemning skinny models that I am a ‘recovering’ anorexic, but that would be a lie. I wonder if I’m the very first sixtysomething sufferer? Someone should study me because there is no point to me being very thin. It doesn’t make me attractive. It has never snagged me a man who is good enough for me, who appreciates me.

But it’s a mindset that is hard to give up. I remember catching sight of my legs in a mirror, after I’d been confined to bed following my facelift, unable to eat anything, surviving only on pineapple juice drunk through a straw. I saw two long bones and suddenly the pain and the expense were all worth it.

Even today, I find myself making lists before I fly to Sydney: capillaries, brow tint, filler, Botox, hair, new clothes, moisturiser, Hanro underwear, pedi, waxing. I am like a magician, running from plate to plate to keep them from crashing, hairy and wrinkled, to the floor.

And when I land, Nige might not even be there. He might have married, again, given he got a lockdown puppy with his new girlfriend. He might think me a little bit ridiculous.

Which, of course, I am.