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Wednesday, 31 July 2019

Is This Mutton Meets: Isobel Kell

Isobel Kell, 60, from Largs in Scotland, winner of the Look Fabulous Forever Face of 2019
Welcome to a new series at Is This Mutton? where I meet inspiring, extraordinary women aged 50 plus. Isobel Kell is the winner of the Look Fabulous Forever Face of 2019. In the last few years she has had a tumultuous time: finding love in mid life, moving house, having a cancer diagnosis and turning an acting hobby into a profession.

Isobel had only been seeing her partner Craven for a few months when she discovered she had cancer. The date is ingrained in her memory: Aug 8 2016, five days before her birthday. She had discovered blood in her urine. Exchanging small talk with the consultant, Isobel explained how she was involved in amateur dramatics and it had been good for her confidence.
"Well we have a bit of a drama going on here," observed the specialist, and the session passed in a blur of talk about chemo /' bloods and hospital appointments.

In a daze Isobel walked out to the car, not planning to tell Craven the diagnosis, but he realised right away.  "And he was there all the way for me, he never asked if I wanted a break.  He is here forever," says Isobel softly.

She had been on her own for 15 years after divorce and didn't expect to meet anyone. But after the first date with Craven, and tripping up after the first kiss, she realised he was The One. Now they are moving into a house in Largs by the sea, 40 miles from Glasgow.
Isobel Kell actress and Face of Look Fabulous Forever 2019 with partner
It meant leaving behind her home for the last 15 years where her parents had retired. "I thought long and hard about it but illness changes your perspective," she says.  "I had so many happy memories of that house but it was time to move on." On her 60th birthday last year, Craven presented her with a love token ring.

Isobel was successfully treated for cancer with surgery and chemotherapy. She has regular checks, with the next due this month, but she has put on a little weight and feels good.


Treading the Boards


Since she was a child Isobel had been fascinated by actors like Bette Davis and it had always been her ambition to act, and to go to New York. Her father was a musician and she recalls the house was always full of music and laughter.

Her ambitions were put on hold when she married and had two sons. She was an only child and when her father died, she became her mother's carer.

"But eventually it was my time," says Isobel, and she joined the local drama group at 40 and started going to college.  She began with an HND in performance and acting, followed by an honours degree in performance, radio and education.  She is also off to New York soon to meet up with a relative. Another ambition ticked off the list.
Isobel recently appeared as a Scottish noblewoman in a film shown on Netflix about Robert the Bruce. "It was wonderful to see how a movie is made, and since then I've done some work for TV. I may yet get a line sometime!"

Fashion and Beauty 


Isobel has always loved long, floaty floral skirts and cotton embroidered tops. She is petite at 5'2 and wears mostly jeans and casual tops, but likes a tailored look for going out. She has become more adventurous in trying out different fashions.

Her top beauty tip is an unusual one:  bathing your face in the morning dew on May 1.

It was a tradition passed on by her mother that washing your face in the dew in May would give a beautiful complexion. Unconventionally, Isobel has never used a face cloth and always washes her face with her hands using Imperial Leather soap. She normally keeps her makeup light - lipstick, blusher and brow pencil. Since becoming the face of LFF, she has enjoyed using a light foundation and plum eyeshadow.  Check out my reviews of their products here and here.

Isobel maintains her size 10/12 figure with a lot of walking, a bit of tap dancing and some swimming.

Women She Admires

Isobel is inspired by the actress, dancer and humanitarian Audrey Hepburn. "She inspired me regarding her values in life as well as in her acting roles, saying 'Nothing is impossible' with the word itself saying 'I'm possible.'"

She also reveres Dame Judi Dench, whose long acting career over 60 years shows that there is no age limit for women actors over the age of 40.

And finally, Tricia Cusden, the founder of Look Fabulous Forever. "After meeting her at the photo shoot and chatting I found out what a truly great inspirational woman she is," says Isobel. "I love her attitude that women over 50 are not little old women but have the get up and go to be proud of our mature age and the inner beauty and wisdom that comes with it.

"Winning the Face of LFF gave me back the confidence I had lost due to being unwell. It was such a huge boost. I am so proud to be involved in the evolution of LFF for women today."
Tricia Cusden founder of Look Fabulous Forever with Isobel Kell and the other finalists for LFF Face of 2019. Copyright: LFF

Do You Know A Special Woman Who Should Feature Here? 


Looking for your suggestions of inspirational women over the age of 50, who have transformed themselves and their lives. How about you?  Email me, Gail, at isthismutton96@gmail.com

There's a special gift for everyone whose nomination results in an article!

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