Having spent the best part of 18 years lighting up our screens as co-host of Strictly Come Dancing (not to mention a successful modelling career since the age of 17), Tess Daly , 52, has clocked up her fair share of hours in the hair and makeup hot seat.
From her favourite fine-line-smoothing peel pads to a trick for fixing a fading spray tan , she's gleaned countless beauty tidbits over her decades in the business. But Tess' glitterball-worthy radiance isn't just the result of a well-curated bathroom cabinet.
Looking after her own wellbeing, and finding micro-moments of me-time throughout the day, particular with yoga practice, is key for the busy mother-of-two. (Tess shares daughters Phoebe, 17, and Amber, 12, with husband Vernon Kay).
"Just ten minutes of yoga makes me feel as though I've pressed the 'reset' button. I'm refuelled and ready to seize the day again," Tess told me when we sit down for a chat over Zoom.
Here, she shares more of the must-haves, mantras and treatments she swears by...
My 'get up and glow' morning routine
"I'm an early riser so I sleepwalk to the kettle at 6.20 am and make myself a tea. In truth, I'd prefer to get up at 7 am – that feels a little more civilised – but that's just the way it has to be if I want to get up before everyone else in the house!
"I check the schedule to see what my girls need for the day. They can both get everything ready themselves now but I like to keep my eye on the ball so I'm not going back to their school an hour later with their gym kit!
"Sometimes I have a power smoothie or juice but mostly I like Greek yoghurt with a handful of frozen blueberries. I microwave them and make a puree to put on top of the yoghurt. It's like having pudding for breakfast – divine – or I'll have a banana on toast with honey.
"At the weekend, I'll cook us all a nice big veggie breakfast with lots of eggs and grilled tomatoes. Lunch is usually a sandwich – I love bread, I would never ever give that up.
"The mornings are when I try to do some yoga. That's my time to be reflective about the day ahead.
"Then in the evenings, I often have a stretch upstairs. I try to put my phone away before bed and don't check my emails in the last few hours of the day at all. Otherwise, I find I'm on high alert when I'm trying to get to sleep. I find reading a book very meditative – that really helps me nod off."
Yoga – my ultimate 'reset' tool
"I love Yoga with Adriene on YouTube. I've tried others but I just keep going back to her because she has a solution for everything I'm feeling. If I notice my shoulders are a bit stiff one day, I know she'll have a video to help. Plus, it's free and can be done anywhere.
"If I skip it for, say, three days in a row, I start to feel twitchy – as though I've missed doing something that's good for me. I actually feel more flexible now. Up until about four years ago, I was very ad-hoc with my fitness but I do it on a regular basis now.
"I work out with a trainer a couple of times a week. I'll do intermittent skipping where I skip for a minute then have a minute's rest. You do it for five minutes but actually only end up skipping for three – it's great! But it really works. It gets my heart rate up and the endorphins going.
"I also use a mini-trampoline . I work best when I do things for a set time otherwise my mind wanders. But having a trainer has really helped keep me motivated. I don't have the discipline to just turn up to the gym by myself. If it's just a loose arrangement, I'd always find a naughty excuse not to go. I just try to remind myself that I'll never regret a workout and I always feel better after one, knowing I've done something positive for my wellbeing."
My mantras for ageing and wellbeing
"For as long as I can remember, I've been interested in food as nutrition . Before television, when I lived in New York working as a model, I picked up a book called The Food Pharmacy by Jean Carper in a flea market. It was all about using food as an equivalent to medicine – for example, something as basic as rubbing half a garlic clove on a piece of sourdough bread and pouring olive oil on it. That kind of thing is brilliant for your bloodstream and your immune system.
"During the pandemic, keeping my loved ones healthy became more important than ever and now I like to challenge myself to produce new and exciting nutritional meals for my family.
"And ageing? I'm very pragmatic about the whole process. I'm at that age where you can just see all the lines but that's just life, you know. What is the alternative? It just feels kind of ungrateful to dwell on it. I'm grateful for a healthy life."
My tried-and-tested treatments
"I have ultherapy once a year which I love. It's a kind of radiotherapy treatment that boosts collagen from the inside of your skin. I just find I look more relaxed, dewy and fresh but it's not invasive.
"I'm very wary of changing my appearance too much. Maybe if I didn't do my job, I'd be more adventurous but I don't want to suddenly change the way I look. I don't go for facials. It sounds weird, but I don't like having a wet face with stuff slathered on it by someone else!
"My friend comes round to do my highlights and cut every six weeks but during lockdown, I discovered Umberto Giannini Colour Flowerology Vegan Colour , £10 – an amazing fool-proof box dye. That filled the gap until I could get it done professionally again.
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"I have a deep tissue sports massage once a month. It just releases tension in my calf muscles, if I've been wearing heels, or in my shoulders. And if I'm pushing the boat out or I have a day off, I have reflexology. That's my absolute heaven."
Claudia Winkleman's best-kept tan secret
"If anyone knows about tan, it's Claudia [Tess' Strictly Come Dancing co-host.] We're always sharing beauty products but one day, she looked particularly glowy and gorgeous. She told me it was Utan x Jamie Tanning Water , £18. You just spritz it on and it's incredible for in between spray tans when your face starts to fade before the rest of your body."
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Tess Daly's favourite beauty products
"My beauty routine really hasn't changed that much over the years. Apart from the fact my moisturiser has to work harder now, I need more highlights to cover up the greys and it takes me longer to cover up my bags !
"I've used this product for years – it goes right back to my modelling days when I travelled a lot. I use it all over as a really deep intensive moisture mask on a plane, on my cuticles for an instant manicure effect, to heal my lips when they're chapped, on burns from the cooker..."
"I'm quite obsessed with these exfoliation pads at the moment because they really make a difference. I use one once a week to slough away dead skin and any fake tan build-up around my hairline, help smooth out fine lines and even out the tone and texture of the skin. I also like Ren Ready Steady Glow Daily AHA Tonic , £28, that's similar."
"I'm really into this. It's fairly rich but I use it morning and night. I'm not sure if you're meant to but I've got a little greedy with it. It's great for helping my dry skin in winter."
"I took Pregnacare during both pregnancies and now I take these. I keep them in my kitchen drawer next to my tea and have one every day. They're good for your skin, your hair and your nails. I love the B12, I love the energy they give me and I love the fact they help support my immune system, especially at this time of year."
"I swear by overnight masks . You just wake up feeling hydrated and plumped, especially to counteract all of the central heating at the moment. This one is great but I also love Sisley Paris Black Rose Cream Mask , £119, as a bit of a splurge and Skinny Tan Face 2 in 1 Overnight Tan & Hydrate Mask , £19.99, to lightly tan. I love Skinny Tan products – they work."
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Tess Daly is an ambassador for Vitabiotics Wellwoman.