Aging. We all do it. And that's a good thing, right? Sometimes, when you look at skin care marketing, it’s like there is nothing worse than the visible effects of aging. We’re glad to see a shift in this, with the emerging of the ‘aging well’ movement. The idea behind this movement is that you don’t have to prevent or slow down aging and see it as a terrible thing, but that it’s more important to be kind to yourself, care for yourself and, yes, age well. Aging well means that skincare can give you soft, happy skin at all ages. Even if you have a wrinkle or two.
Many products use phrases like ‘firming’ and ‘rejuvenating’, promising things like preventing wrinkles and basically eternal youth. But can a product in a jar or a tube really make time stand still? And better still, should it? Is that even desirable? This emphasis on youthfulness plays into the uncertainty and self esteem issues people have and keeps up the stifling, unrealistic beauty standards of this day and age. These beauty standards effect women even more, making them believe that their worth diminishes as they age.
Aging causes the natural collagen production to decrease. This means that the skin gradually loses some of its elasticity over time. As you approach your thirties and beyond, the first signs of maturing start to appear. Usually there aren’t deep wrinkles present. Around this time, most people will have lost all of their ‘baby fat’ (i.e. youthful subcutaneous volume) and their facial features start to slim down. It’s aging! Is it a reason to panic? Not according to us. Skin aging is a natural process, and something that should be embraced.
Embracing (skin) aging
Aging isn’t really all that bad. Should we emphasize some of the perks? As you age, you collect more and more experiences, making you feel more self-assured than during the days where you experienced everything for the first time. Many people in their teens and early twenties are still looking for direction in life, which can be hard. If you ask us, it's passé to aspire to achieve eternal youthfulness. Of course, from an evolutionary point of view, it's understandable that people have a predilection towards signs of youthfulness and fertility. But the idea that wrinkles are 'unattractive' and something to prevent and remove is a matter of perception. It's about time to change or views on (skin) aging and broaden the idea of what is beautiful, so it can be attained by people of all ages.
Does this mean that we should all start feasting on junk food, smoke a pack of cigarettes a day or bake in the sun without SPF? Well, no. Skin care might not be aimed towards preventing aging at all costs, but it's a form of self care. You don't use SPF to look 20 forever, but to age wéll. There is nothing wrong with looking 50 when you are 50 years old. A good skincare routine means that you can protect yourself from premature aging, meaning that you can look healthy and radiant.
It's part of a more holistic approach to aging. Eat a. healthy and balanced diet, be moderate with junk food, protect yourself against the sun and exercise: not to look like a newborn forever, but to age well and to have healthy skin regardless of your age. If you are healthy on the inside, your health will make you shine from within. It's not about making all your wrinkles disappear or making aging out to be something terrible. You can be beautiful at all ages!
Being beautiful is so much more than just perfect, wrinkle free skin. How about a lovely smile, radiant eyes, a good sense of humor or a unique personality?
What's your take on the 'aging well movement'?