Hello – as promised, I’m back with part two of my holiday packing posts for women over 40. It has taken a very long time to put it together so I’m mostly going to let the pictures do the talking. Thank you to everyone who got in touch to say there was a mistake in the downloadable packing list. I have a junior designer in the office with a red face but really it’s my fault for not checking it before I pressed ‘publish’. I just ran out of time. However, it has now been amended and here is the correct version.

Holiday packing for women over 40

So, I’m going to work through it from where I left off on Friday, starting with block heeled sandals.

Block heeled sandals

You need to be careful when you’re buying these, there is a risk of looking like a junior bridesmaid if you don’t find a pair with a design detail. You need to look for a chunky buckle, a tie strap or a ruffle to avoid ‘little girl’ style.

Holiday packing for women over 40

Red lace effect suede sandals – now in the sale

Gold ruffle sandals – also available in red suede or white leather

Black suede ankle tie sandals (I’m recommending these again because I’ve worn them non stop since I got them)

Dual metallic silver and gold sandals

Ivory buckle detail with wooden block heel – I have these and can recommend them, you can see me wearing them below

Flat sandals

Unless you have long legs, my top tip would be to avoid flat sandals with an ankle strap. The less detail you have around the ankle and the more of the foot that you reveal, the longer your legs will appear.

Holiday packing for women over 40

White buckle detail slides – lots of colours available

Gold satin frayed detail slides

Pink metallic sandals now a complete bargain in the sale

Pompom and tassel sandals

Beaded metallic sandals

Beach shoes

You don’t want to ruin your holiday sandals with saltwater and chlorine. I bought the first pair of Havaianas sandals that I’m featuring here last summer and they were so comfortable that I wanted to wear them all of the time. The thong strap is extra leg lengthening too.

Holiday packing for women over 40

Havaianas sandals – my number one tip, they’re so comfortable you’ll want to wear them every day (lots of colours available)

Cherry blossom detail flip flops (other colours available)

Pow wow sequin slides – the pop art trend

Flip flop sandals with a simple twist detail (lots of colours available)

Silver beaded flip flops with firm sole


Every few years espadrilles roll round again and I’m so glad that I didn’t Marie Kondo my pink and orange ones. This summer they are once again the shoe of the season.

Holiday packing for women over 40

Gold glitter espadrilles, more sizes available here

Nude tassel detail espadrilles with memory foam insole – supremely comfortable to wear I’m told.

Love flat espadrilles (also available in gold glitter) – a nod to Chanel and a bargain with no VAT.

Gold lustre espadrilles – I have these and can recommend them. Also available in two striped options.

Black ribbon tie espadrilles – good value if you don’t want to spend a lot.


When we had our first holiday together, I discovered that Mr MC has an aversion to swimwear with bra style straps. His theory is that it is very unflattering to the form unless you have tiny shoulders and over the years I’ve decided he’s right. Halternecks suit most people because they break up the expanse of chest. I have bought the navy and yellow version of the tankini below for our holiday. I really like it and, if I could justify it, I would add the other two tops that I’ve featured here too.

I have no idea why the kaftan has such bad reviews online, I have it and I like it. However I do also think that wearing a man’s shirt like the one I’ve featured below (collarless and linen) is a very cost effective way of looking fabulous in a beach bar.

If you’re looking for a swimsuit, this one is made from a textured material which will be kinder to your form that a smooth layer of shiny lycra. It’s also in a lovely deep brown colour which will look fab with a tan.

Holiday packing for women over 40

Tankini top (currently 30% off)

Tankini bottoms (currently 30% off)


Simple oversized collarless linen shirt

Flatteringly textured swimsuit

Beach bags

I don’t take a handbag on holiday with me, just a beach bag and a selection of clutches with me so I need the beach bag to look good. Tassels and pom poms are big again this year, either that or a slogan – or both.

Holiday packing for women over 40

Pink, green and gold reversible beach bag – this one has a gold colourway inside so you can use it either way out.

Blue geometric beach bag

Wanderlust straw bag

Pink straw with pompoms

Gold lustre beach bag

Flamingo beach bag

Clutch bags

As soon as I put my purse and keys into a clutch bag I slip into a party mood. There’s just something about them that makes you feel frivolous. If you only buy one, go for the gold (or silver) leather one. You will use it every time you go out because it goes with everything, regardless of the season. If you can run to it, add a few brightly coloured ones to your collection. Add them to any low key outfit and you suddenly look dressed, they’re magical.

Holiday packing for women over 40

Gold leather metallic clutch (also available in silver)

Pink palm clutch

Metallic pom pom clutch

Flamingo clutch

Blue pom pom clutch

Multi-coloured pom pom clutch


Well not terribly intimate – we’re talking PJs and bras. I update my pyjama collection for holidays and at Christmas – otherwise it would always be low on the list. I need pyjamas on holiday because Mr MC always has the air conditioning on full blast. I have also started wearing these secret support tops to help fend off crepiness and sagging of the décolleté. Better late than never perhaps.

This is the best strapless bra I have found. It does not have underwires so is much more comfortable than other bras. It also has memory foam cups so it gives good support.

Holiday packing for women over 40

Blue striped PJ shorts – I have these, they’re lovely, especially for the price

White cotton lace trimmed PJ shorts

Bright blue PJ shorts

Floral lace trimmed PJ shorts

Cami with secret support

The ultimate strapless bra with memory foam 

Jumpsuits and playsuits

Don’t forget you can always substitute a dress with one of these. You can see me trying two of them on below after ordering some to see how they looked.

Holiday packing for women over 40

Knee length jumpsuit

Strappy playsuit (see below on me)

Denim playsuit – 75% off in clearance

Red self tie jumpsuit (see below on me)


So, we have already established that big statement earrings with a small necklace is the way to go this summer. When your arms are bare, you also need colourful bangles. Here is a cost effective selection.

Holiday packing for women over 40

Top to bottom, L – R

Stacking bracelets

Diamante wrap bracelet

Star necklace – this is a little more pricey than the other pieces because I think you will wear it a lot. I bought one to wear at the Blog Awards and it has already earned its keep.

Tassel necklace

Slim beaded elasticated bangles

Tassel bangle 3 pack

Coral cuff

Tassel hoops

Pom pom tassel earrings

And so that is it – your holiday packing sorted – or at least I hope it’s helped. Here are a few pictures of me trying things on last night. Please do bear in mind that it was at the end of a long day of work and running the boys around to different places. It was getting dark and I’m looking a bit weary. Plus I am in my back garden, not an exotic location with a beach ready body so you’ll have to stretch your imagination a bit (ok a lot).

The playsuit (I hate that name but that’s what these things are called). I ordered this with holiday evenings in mind. It’s a high quality jersey so it’s cool and comfortable to wear. It hangs well, the waist is softly draped and I like the cut on the shoulders.

Holiday packing for women over 40

Playsuit; Ankle tie sandals

The jumpsuit – this is the one I featured above. Again I was thinking of something that would be good to travel in that could also be worn for evenings. I like it. I’m not sure why my feet are blurred in all of these pictures but these are the ivory sandals that I featured above.

Holiday packing for women over 40

Red jumpsuit; Ivory block heeled sandals

Another playsuit. It’s one I added to the order to get free delivery but I’m not so sure about it. It’s great value but the waist is cut too low for me and I’m not keen on the neckline. It would work better if you are an apple or column shape.

Holiday packing for women over 40

Playsuit; Ivory block heeled sandals

Recent outfits

This is what I wore to go out with my old friends from the primary school playground last Friday – they were treating me to a champagne supper for my birthday. I don’t see them often enough and we all absolutely love hearing what each other’s children are doing. Somehow it’s so special when you’ve known them since they were tiny tots.

This blush pink glitter v-neck jumper sold out in February but new stock has arrived and I highly recommend it. It’s a lovely thing to wear when you want a relaxed outfit that looks as though you’ve made a bit of an effort.


Glitter v-neck jumper; Hush silk trousers (past season); Suede wrap around sandals; Ponyskin clutch

This is what I wore for work today.

Midlifechic work outfits

Sparkle cardigan; cold shoulder top (in the sale); Wide crops; Suede tie sandals

I’ve been trying to get a picture of the gleam of this silver cardigan but, like the glitter top above, it’s really hard to get the camera to pick it up. However if you’re looking for something that is smarter than your average cardigan but more relaxed than a jacket, it’s brilliant and it goes with everything. Here’s a better picture of the detail and it now has 30% off in the sale.

Holiday packing for women over 40

Sparkle cardigan

Whenever I use this orange bag, people ask where they can get one. I will be seeing the man who makes them this summer so, if you would like one, for once I can say that I can get you one. They are beautifully made in a factory that makes similar bags for a major designer. As I remember, they were also available in taupe, fuchsia pink, red, purple and black and they really lift your outfit. Because of the high quality and factory provenance, they are quite expensive. I think I paid about £200 for this one. Anyway, if you are interested, let me know by email before the end of July and I will send you more detailed pictures. I should be able to negotiate a better price with him if a few people are interested.

I’m running out of time so I must go. I hope everyone who is in an exam household is surviving this last week. It’s hard going isn’t it – like wading through porridge… but the end is nigh. Next week summer can truly begin.

Disclosure: ‘Holiday packing for women over 40’ is not a sponsored post

Real holiday posts

2014 – Competa, Spain

What I’ve packed for a holiday in Spain

What I wore for travelling to Spain

The first day of holiday – how it all went wrong

How it all got better

2015 – Kalkan, Turkey

Off to the land of Eastern Promise

A holiday in Kalkan plus – should women over 40 wear bikinis?

2016 – Kefalonia, Greek Islands

A holiday in Kefalonia with teenagers part 1

Kefalonia with teenagers part 2

Sales that have started

White Company up to 40% off

Finery – 30% off everything with code JUNE30

Baukjen – some great reductions

J Crew up to 30% off

Selfridges up to 50% off

Liberty up to 50% off

Uniqlo – linen sale

Boden 30% off dresses and accessories

Pure Collection – up to 60% off

Whistles summer sale – new lines added

Key Spring / Summer Style Posts

Summer city dressing – dresses

Chelsea Flower Show and Madeleine

The return of the trousersuit

Spotlight on Baukjen

A holiday wardrobe from Marks and Spencer

What to buy from Boden and Hush

Weekend wardrobe capsules

Uniqlo – linen and denim review

How to update your capsule wardrobe for Spring

Spotlight on Pure Collection

Finery Review – Spring 17

Spring 17 wardrobe updates

 The Midlife Series

Simple 50th birthday celebrations

How it feels to reach your 50th birthday

Curing a lifelong phobia

Midlife loneliness – a follow up

Loneliness and the midlife woman

What is midlife in the twenty-tens? 

Survey results – what you are experiencing

My story