Jaclyn Smith: Actress, Fountain of Youth
May 10, 1999 from People Magazine
If you’re old enough to remember when Charlie’s Angels soared atop the Nielsens, then you’re probably wondering where Jaclyn Smith found the Fountain of Youth. Though it’s been two decades since her five-year run as sultry Kelly Garrett, Smith at 53 “looks the same as when I first met her,” marvels actor Robert Wagner, a friend. Suggests fellow Angel Cheryl Ladd: “There’s a painting of her in an attic somewhere.”
Is healthy living the secret? “I don’t smoke, drink, do drugs,” says the Houston native, whose idea of a cocktail is celery, apple and carrot juice. “And I eat properly.” She credits her fourth husband, heart surgeon Bradley Allen, 44, with “reminding me about a low-fat diet,” and rattles off her herb-and-vitamin regimen, which is heavy on antioxidants and calcium (“I have to watch my posture and I don’t want osteoporosis”). For exercise, the 5’ 7” actress takes long walks and dance classes and has private instruction in Pilates, a muscle-building and stretching program. Cosmetic surgery? Smith, who will appear in the CBS movie Three Secrets on May 11, says she hasn’t had any – “but I’m not against it by any means.”
Wagner believes that Smith’s humor, honesty and unpretentiousness “all help her maintain her tremendous beauty,” and Ladd, too, credits her upbeat attitude: “Jaclyn kind of looks at life like it’s a dream come true.” Allen, whom she wed in 1997, and who commutes between his medical practice in Chicago and their six-bedroom, antique-filled home in Los Angeles, claims that her appearance is beside the point. “When my friends or family meet her, they don’t say how beautiful she is,” he notes. “They say, ‘Wow, she is really nice’.” Not that he’s blind to the magic of her green eyes (“Oh, jeez, I can get lost in them”) or her radiant smile (“full of life and very seductive”).
Smith, who wears Clinique blush and a base with sunscreen from Max Factor (“They no longer make it, so I bought it all up”), models herself after her mother, Margaret Ellen Smith, a homemaker who still gets compliments at 84. “A lot of it has to do with the fact that she has her values intact, she’s not self-absorbed, and she lives for her family,” Smith says. For her part, looking after Gaston, 17, and Spencer Margaret, 13, “keeps me stimulated”. That and her arrangement with Kmart, for which she has designed clothes, shoes, watches and lingerie since 1985. As her kids grow up, though, Smith is increasingly wistful. “I should have had 20 children to avoid the empty-nest syndrome,” she says. “That’s what makes me aware of time.”