As long as I can remember, advertising aimed at women has screamed one message loud and clear… youth equals beauty! We have been hoodwinked into believing that we lose value as we age. As a result, many women go to great lengths to try to fight off the natural effects of passing years. Thankfully, there is finally a “pro-aging” revolution beginning to happen in the cosmetics industry.
Perhaps we baby boomers have always been rebellious. In our youth, we protested everything from materialism to the Vietnam war. Now, as we reach our senior years, we’re rebelling against the concept that young women have a monopoly on beauty.
Thousands of women across America and around the world recently petitioned two major cosmetics firms, L’Oreal and Estee Lauder, to stop using the term “anti-aging” on their product packaging and in marketing campaigns. Last month, Allure magazine announced that it would no longer use the term.
I’ve been thinking about age a lot lately. When I was 59, I dreaded turning 60. Now, 65 is less than a week away and I’m embracing it! In fact, I’m throwing myself a “Still Alive at 65!” party! Perhaps being diagnosed with cancer shortly before my 61st birthday has something to do with that. After all, aging skin and greying hair seem like such insignificant issues in comparison!
Even before my cancer diagnosis, however, I had little interest in hiding my age. I may not be crazy about my marionette lines and the little wrinkles appearing above my upper lip, but I think that a young face, as pretty as it might be, is a bit like an empty canvas waiting for an artist’s brush. In my opinion, believing that beauty belongs only to the young is like thinking that a blank journal is more interesting to read than an autobiography!
I concur completely with the petition mentioned above which said, “We need to stop the anti-aging bias. Aging is perfectly okay! It’s a beautiful thing to be here on this earth, and with every passing day we gain beauty, experience, wisdom, and appreciation for life. This is why we need to start celebrating, not fighting, aging.”