Don’t Laugh. (Or Blink.)
I am on a quest.
Well, several, really. I am a seeker of knowledge,of love, of joy.
And, of beauty.
My heart warms at a sunset, a lovely photograph, or a baby’s smile. Flowers lift my spirit. A cello can make me cry.
And since I was a little girl, I have sought personal beauty too. I’m not a natural beauty. My face is as round as Charlie Brown’s. And I have fine hair, close-set eyes and thin lips. But I can look pretty with some work. And there is no limit to the amount of work I am willing to do to look as pretty as I can.
I thought as I got older I would be able to relax a little about my looks. And to some extent I have. Because I have become more accepting of my flaws, and willing to believe (a little) that I am beautiful in my own way.
But I find that I am more determined than ever to look my best at all times. And as I get older, everything takes longer. I spend more time on my hair. More time on my makeup. I spend more time on beauty maintenance than on meal preparation. I am worried that soon I will need to spend more time on my beauty routine than on my beauty sleep.
Years ago, when I used to go to France on business once a year, I learned from French women that it pays better beauty dividends to spend more (effort and money) on your skin than on your makeup. I didn’t worry about that so much fifteen years ago. But now I see the truth of it. Sixty year old skin needs great pampering.
So I am on a quest for great skin. At sixty, that means wrinkle reduction.
I have the normal amount of wrinkles and age spots for sixty. In the right light (dim) even less than normal. I am determined to keep it that way.
The wrinkle-reducing, youth-endowing creams are plentiful.
Here are some ads from recent magazines:
This is obnoxious. I don’t think these ads are promoting skin cream. They are promoting airbrushing. I guess I don’t need moisturizer. I need photo-shopping.
These girls have never used any of their facial muscles. They have never smiled, never spoken, never blinked. And they’re models, so of course they never eat either.
And the two of them added together are still younger than me. If you’re selling anti-aging lotion, why is the model nineteen?
So I looked for an ad with an “older” woman. One who can show me what my skin may actually look like.
I found this one:
Here’s an older woman. Julia Roberts.
Okay, she’s not sixty, but she’s forty-three, so that is much closer than the teenagers above. She could have the beginning of wrinkles. She smiles a lot. With a really big mouth too. That should make for laugh lines. But she doesn’t have any. Not because of the “miracle” makeup. British regulators won’t even let this ad run. It was decided that this ad misrepresented what the product could do, because the photo-shopping was too blatant.
Ah, but L’Oreal has hired Diane Keaton as their new “face.” And she’s sixty-five. Perfect! I want to look like her anyway. She is so cute! (for sixty-five.) And here’s the ad from this month’s More magazine:
She has some lines around her eyes. Around her mouth. Her hand looks like my hand. This is something I can aspire to. She’s lovely. Now that’s a realistic product.
Only, this is the real Diane: