Dating in your 4039s how to progress from casual dating to a relationship

Current clients – all female – include parole officers, psychotherapists and investment bankers (age range 30-70), who seek her advice on everything from how to spice up their internet profile to how to behave on a first date.

dating in your 4039s-54

But if you position and package yourself appropriately, the odds will work in your favour, rather than against you." As someone who dated more than 100 men in 10 countries before she met her soulmate – an English divorcé called Paul – Paula feels more than qualified to advise others. Often it's a simple case of tooth whitening (''it knocks off five years''), Botox to smooth frown lines or regular trips to the hairdresser to hide the grey roots.

Experience has taught her to value her virtue and femininity, and she is keen to pass this message on. It's all about evolutionary psychology." Bad news for women over 40? She also recommends switching to subtly flattering make-up brands, such as Bobbi Brown or Mac.

''Women do themselves a disfavour by offering to split the cheque,'' she warns. Sex triggers a bonding hormone called oxytocin, she says, and this can play havoc with the female psyche. She is, she says, prepared to use "tough love" when the situation calls for it.

In a recent Woman's Hour programme on first date etiquette, spaghetti, oysters and lobster were just some of the foods described as deal breakers.

Men were suspicious of women who ordered salad ("heavy interaction might take place with the fridge later on") or displayed overt greed ("if she flies at the food, she might fly at other things").

Women disliked men who were rude to waiters, or showed no aptitude for the art of conversation.

Yet the Radio 4 programme made no reference to the thousands of people for whom dates are like needles in haystacks.

If you can't remember when someone last asked you out, it isn't the minefield of how to behave in a restaurant that causes anguish, it's securing a date in the first place.

Former corporate high-flier Paula Rosdol, a London-based American, specialises in helping women in midlife and beyond relaunch themselves onto the dating scene.

"I want women to feel they're desirable and hot," says Paula, who is 51 but looks younger.

"It's all about giving hope to women who feel they're on the scrap heap." With this in mind, one-to-one sessions are set up in the tea rooms of the capital's top hotels.