Not since "I must, I must increase my bust" ricocheted around the playground have I given that particular area much thought. But while I may have been ignoring my bust, everyone else suddenly seems to want a piece of it. Last year, you couldn't move for anti-ageing creams; this year it's creams for the neck and bust - or, rather, décolleté - that we can apparently no longer live without. Given that I'm already pretty committed to creams for my face, eyes, body and hands, along with various other time-consuming procedures, do I really need another cream, or to worry that yet another part of my body is not up to scratch?
"The décolleté is an extremely fragile and delicate area," says Fiona Brackenbury of Decléor. "Not only is this area supporting the bust, it is also quite often, in the summer, exposed to one of the most harmful influences to our skin - UV rays. The UV rays will damage the collagen and elastin, which are essential in giving support and firmness to this area."
Brackenbury says women should use a bust cream from the age of 25, which sounds a little ridiculous to me. "A key sign when you must start using this product is when you wake up and see visible lines, almost crease lines, where the skin has been pushed together and it is unable to spring back because the skin has started to lose its elasticity and suppleness," says Brackenbury, slightly more reasonably, adding that during pregnancy and breastfeeding (when the tissue around the bust has been stretched) is another crucial time.
But if, like me, the likelihood of you adding another item to your morning to-do list is slim, there are other ways you can look after your décolleté. Make sure you take your face moisturiser (at least SPF15) down to your bust (this will protect it from UV rays) and don't spray perfume on to the area, because the alcohol destroys collagen and elastin; the reaction of the alcohol and UV also encourages lines. I spray the back of my neck rather than the front. Yes, lines will probably arrive there, too, but if I can't see them, they don't exist.