We can all remember that first shocking moment when we looked in the mirror and thought, “Holy crap, where did that line come from?” (if not, then your time is coming).
So you decide, “This is war! I don’t feel any older, I don’t want to look any older, what can I do to age gracefully?” and the challenge begins to fight the aging process.
I was fortunate enough to have had the world-renowned Dr. Fredric Brandt as my antiaging consultant, and he taught me about prevention. Getting ahead of the curve is critical.
I think of it kinda like getting control of a fire. Every fire starts out small, and if addressed early, can be brought under control with a garden hose. But let that fire have its way and you’ll be battling it with far more resources and tools than just a bit of water.
I started getting Botox® on my forehead at age 27.
Maybe you did too. I know that these days I’m hard-pressed to find a 30 year old girl in my zip code who hasn’t gotten up close and personal with the occasional syringe of Botox. That’s because it’s preventative maintenance that works.
I’m 49 and have no permanent lines on my face. Great. But this is the age when facial lines are the least of my concerns. Let’s talk elasticity!
The Next Step
So you’ve controlled those deep expression lines with some Botox injections every now and then. Bravo! Seems manageable, right? But then, for me it was 42 so I guess it varies depending on your genetic makeup (and lifestyle perhaps), then…here come the jowls!
Jowls are the bane of every middle-aged womans’ existence. So what do you do next?
Well, after you have that aha! moment, realizing that the real culprit is the loss of volume in your face, you do some soul-searching – how bad could some dermal fillers be?
So, you head to Dr. Fixit, who’s blurred those lines for you all of these years, and out comes the needle. AGAIN. Or on the other side of the coin, maybe you’ve never done anything to your face, maybe your kids have gone away to college and you just decide that it’s time for an overhaul.
Either way, you find yourself in Dr. Fixit’s waiting room and your adventure starts up the slippery slope of anti-aging Hell.
Because after those miracle skin plumping fillers, here’s how it goes down:
At first, your cheeks seem super swollen and you panic. But then, every day you start to look more like yourself OR you look nothing like yourself, but start getting used to that extra millimeter of sculptured perfection.
What a miraculous achievement! And from there it’s just a house of cards.
You realize that if you had just a little more volume around your temples it could lift your eyebrows and stretch out those droopy eyelids, right?
You don’t realize it, but your eyes have started to look smaller because of this extra projection in your cheeks and the real fun starts trying to balance the overcompensation with, well more overcompensation!
And then you get to meet your long lasting bestfriend, Ms. Vicious Circle.
This is when you approach the fine line of trying to be ageless vs. just being happy to look well-preserved for your age. Hmmm, my lips could use more volume, and what about my jawline? Perhaps my breasts could use an overhaul? Etc., etc., etc.
See, fillers are only the beginning mamacita. Fillers, in my opinion are the gateway treatment. Not Botox® which is largely preventative – fillers are a truly delicate undertaking. After a satisfying experience with those addicting mofo’s you become a full believer in the occasional aesthetic “tweak”.
What else is out there? What else can I fix?
The one thing you’re not considering though is that you see yourself every day. You notice your cheekbones look good, no wrinkles on your forehead, your jowls are gone, your eyebrows are arched high, your lips look full and your skin is dewy, but here’s what everyone else sees:
I think there is a middle ground between those girls and Jamie Lee Curtis and that’s where I want to live.
A little aging is good. It says we survived this complicated world, came out the other end with life experience and, if we were paying any attention at all, a little bit of wisdom.
Think moderation. Don’t let anyone talk you into more than you think you need, but don’t feel bad about what you want to do either. Just remember that you will age regardless, but how you’re perceived while doing it is up to you.
Look at your being as a whole.
Back away from the mirror and take it all in, then see yourself how you really are and go from there (and if you aren’t capable, then engage a long distance friend who doesn’t see you often – ask for her two cents).
Let’s aim for well-preserved and then get back to living!