The definition of 'beauty' is having inner confidence, always being honest - and knowing when others need a shoulder to cry on, it has emerged.
Researchers who carried out a detailed study among 1,600 Generation X women - those aged 39 to 53 - found the ability to laugh at ones self is also an important trait.
Around one in three who took part said those who conduct acts of good will are ‘beautiful’ – while another 25 per cent said 'dancing like no one was watching' was also a key sign.
Being confident enough to leave the house without make-up and being prepared to admit when you’ve made a mistake also makes a human being 'beautiful'.
Eight in 10 women said it was really important for them to be considered a 'beautiful person' on the inside as well as the outside.
But despite this 67 per cent of those polled expressed a belief women in their 40s and 50s have been overlooked for too long.
Dr Mike Bell, No7 Skincare Scientific Advisor for Boots No7 Laboratories, which carried out the study to launch two new Booster Serums, said: “Research shows that Gen X women are confident and embracing their beauty.
''Our definition of beauty changes as we get older – what was considered beautiful in our 20s may not be the same as our 40s and Gen X women are empowered by their age; to them it is a symbol of the knowledge, experience and confidence they have accumulated.''
The study also found the ability to make others feel more comfortable, regularly displaying kindness and having the courage to stand up for friends are also signs someone is beautiful.
Having confidence in yourself and being healthy and fit also featured highly in the list.
Other signs of beauty include laughing all the time, simply being happy and accepting that your body is always changing.
Gen X women also defined beauty as being genuinely excited about the smaller things in life.
And a further one in 10 said it’s having the confidence to sing out loud in front of others, regardless of whether you have a good voice or not.
The study also found 58 per cent of Gen X women are at a stage in their lives where they understand what they need to do to look and feel their best.
Reassuringly, just over six in 10 admitted they feel confident about the way they look – and many adhere to relatively strict face and body routines to help them feel the best versions of themselves
One third of women keep to a healthy diet and exercise regularly, while four in 10 allow themselves plenty of time to rest and recuperate when needed.
A quarter opt to spend a little more on good quality skin care products – with 44 per cent per cent admitting their skin isn’t as firm as it once was, and 41 per cent acknowledging they have concerns about their skin ‘heading south’.
Seven in 10 women polled by OnePoll believe it is important for Gen X women to embrace who they are – taking care of their appearance, but without going overboard.
Interestingly, a fifth of those questioned admitted the older they get the more they understand what make up, fashion and skincare suits them best.
But for 46 per cent, the older they get, the more they believe beauty comes from within.
Dr Mike Bell added: ''Research shows that Gen X women are confident and embracing their beauty. ''At No7, we celebrate this extraordinary generation of women.
''They are empowered by their age; to them it is a symbol of all the knowledge, experience and confidence they have accumulated.”
No7 Laboratories Firming Booster Serum and No7 Laboratories Dark Spot Correcting Booster Serum complement the existing range to answer the top 3 beauty skincare concerns; loss of firmness, pigmentation and wrinkles.
TOP SIGNS OF ‘REAL BEAUTY’
Kindness in how you treat and speak to othersBeing honestMaking others feel more comfortableSimply being happyHaving the ability to laugh at yourselfBeing happy to be yourself in front of othersHaving the courage to stand up for othersDon't judge others with different beliefs, religions, life choicesKnowing when others need a shoulder to cry onBeing prepared to admit you're wrong sometimes or made a mistakeAsking others how they are feeling / getting onActually quite liking yourselfBeing confident to leave the house without make upAccepting your body is a 'work in progress' and lumps and bumps are normalActively encouraging others to do well and pursue their dreams / ambitions / interestsListening to others and put their needs above your ownConducting regular acts of good willGetting genuinely excited about the smaller things in lifeApproaching life as though it's 'glass half full' rather than 'glass half empty'Not having to surround yourself with the 'cool gang'Not always needing to take the limelight in group situationsTaking care of yourself inside and out; you're healthy and fitCaring about the environmentBeing happy to do foolish things without worrying what other people thinkNot bearing grudgesMoney and material possessions aren't important to youAlways remembering significant dates / points of interest for other peopleBeing carefree enough to dance like no one is watchingBeing low maintenanceHaving the ability to boost other people's egosHaving your own combination of unique style and quirksBeing happy to open up to others and share your insecuritiesBeing able to compose yourself during tricky situationsGood at keeping a work / life balanceEleganceHappy to meet good friends with bedheadBeing energetic and getting the most out of lifeSmiling all the timeBeing okay about socialising with people you don't necessarily like, like the in-laws, work colleagues and clientsWearing your heart on your sleeveBeing happy trying new things such as workout classes alone for the first timeLaughing all the timeBeing thoughtful about where you source your clothes, beauty products, food etc from Volunteering within the local communityHaving the confidence to sing in front of others, even if you are just plain awfulBeing happy going to the pub to have a drink aloneBeing the life and soul of a partyStriving to be a leader rather than a follower