Do the words “Anti-Aging” instantly grab your attention?
Does the phrase “lifting and firming” make your heart beat faster?
Do photos of taut tummies have you reaching for the Prozac?
If so, welcome to MY world! As a woman past 50 (WAY past) I am on a constant quest to look the best I can. And to be honest, I’m more than a little obsessive about stemming the tide of advancing age. A major incentive and inspiration: Mom (hereafter known as Mommie Dearest) who is 95, going strong, and not at all like Joan Crawford. She lives independently, frequents the gym, makes herself up and puts herself together daily. She also keeps her mind sharp by following currents events, playing Scrabble and Bridge. Since I’m assuming at least 30 more years on the planet, like her, I want to look good and stay in shape mentally and physically til the bitter end.
The pursuit of beautification comes with extensive experience, beginning with my prolonged ugly duckling stage. Harlequin glasses? Hideous pixie haircut? Braces? Acne? Check, check, check and check. There was nowhere to go but up. Throw in a beautiful, unblemished older sister and you have an idea how daunting was my mission and strong my motivation to become a swan. How, I wondered, could I look like the girls in Seventeen? (then Mademoiselle, now Vogue). Not until college did I hit my stride.
From an early age, I was into makeup (Pink Cameo lipstick), skincare (Sea Breeze and Clearasil), diet (RC diet cola) and exercise (Jane Fonda). Lots of trial and error, experimentation, drawers crammed with products and constant research probably qualify me for a PHD on the subject. And as we all know, it only gets more challenging after 50.
Our demographic is a regular cash cow for the cosmetics industry and flocks of dermatologists who throw a steady stream of procedures and products our way. Hope in a jar, I call it. Who knew you could buy a cream named just that from Philosophy for $40? But you don’t see many of those targeted women over 50 featured in the ads or modeling in the glossies. And most of the trends aren’t really geared to us.The blue hair and glitter laden lipstick trending now? I don’t think so. Remember Betty Davis in “Whatever Happened to Baby Jane”? Nothing is more aging than adopting a trend suited to women twenty or more years younger. We’ve all seen those magazine features that offer some editor’s curated fashion items and beauty products for women “at every age” that stop at age 50. So what should the rest of us do? Wear a bag over our head? Stay home and draw the drapes? Give up? As a baby boomer, I think not! We are going to rewrite aging, right?
In a strange way, writing this blog is my way of taking my basket full of lemons and making lemonade. I scour the magazines, websites and news outlets for new products, innovations and education so you don’t have to. My blog is an interactive forum to share my own experiences, discoveries, successes and failures. I’ll delve into adapting diet and exercise for post menopause. I’ll tackle topics, techniques, products and procedures of use and interest to US, this select sorority of women at 50 and beyond who have been there, done that, but reject the idea that only youth equals beauty. In short, I’ll provide strategies for aging beautifully. So talk to me. Tell me if I help, elucidate or even entertain you. We’re all in this together.
Original art by Johanna Bohoy