A is for Anti-Aging • #atozchallenge


The advertisement promises: Triple anti-aging action: anti-wrinkle, firming and radiance boosting. When it comes to younger looking skin, we all want immediate results, but also improved skin for the future. This skin care range boosts your skin with moisture and radiance, leaving it softer and smoother within seconds. The regenerative plant cells work continuously on your skin to improve lines and sagging skin in as little as 2 weeks!

I shouldn’t be surprised. We live in a consumer society where we are persuaded to spend our hard-earned money on things we don’t need, while at the same time made to feel inadequate if we don’t have them. The fastest car, the sleekest computer, the latest designer dresses all promise us we will feel better if we possess them. Better about ourselves, better about our circumstances, better about our lives in general.

But we are being sold more than an unnecessary and ineffective jar of face cream. We are being sold the promise of eternal youth, the reassurance that we still look young enough to be beautiful.

It is all a lie.

There is no escaping the cruel master of time. We are older now than we were yesterday, and tomorrow we will be older still. To try and outsmart the passage of time is like trying to hold back the tide. It leaves us frustrated and exhausted, depressed and miserable.

Anti-aging creams and vitamin supplements don’t work. Even anti-aging surgery doesn’t fix the problem. A face that has been tucked and tidied by a surgeon’s knife doesn’t look younger, it just looks like a face that has had surgery.

So what are we to do? Cover our mirrors and give up?

The solution is to be pro-aging, to embrace the gifts that getting older brings.

When you’re older, you don’t give a fuck about what anyone else thinks. You can wear what you like, sleep with whoever you want, and be as eccentric as you like. Your excuse is that you’re old enough now to do what makes you feel good. You can live your life on your terms.

You don’t have to devote yourself to taking care of others any more. If you have kids, they are now adults. If your husband is boring you to death, you can divorce him. If your corporate job makes you break out in hives, you can serve coffee at the local café.

You can finally say whatever you like. If your religion isn’t enriching your life, you can tell your friends why you’re not going back to church. You can confront the shopkeeper about his rudeness. You can swear like a sailor. You can write your memoir and reveal all the secrets you’ve carried for so long.

“You’ve changed,” your friends and family might say. “Why are you like this?”

You can look at them in the eye and smile. “Because I’m aging,” you can say. “This is what getting older really looks like.”

Maybe then we would look forward to getting older and not try to resist it. If someone had told me that this was what aging looked like, I would have been counting down the years.

It’s up to us to demonstrate what getting older really is — a ticket to freedom, fun and not giving a fuck. Real aging is feeding your chickens in a ballgown.

I’m raising the flag of pro-aging — won’t you join me?

This post is part of the April A to Z Challenge


About KatieP

Embracing my midlife sexy while exploring modern love & relationships • Devoted to all things beautiful • Master of Arts in creative writing & non-fiction writing

74 thoughts on “A is for Anti-Aging • #atozchallenge

  1. Yay gray hair, or at least I’m trying to convince myself to embrace it.lol just dropping in from the a to z challenge. scheduled to post at 6 am Central Standard Time

  2. Very inspiring and one bold statement coming from the heart in this time when ‘ how young you look’ says it all!! And loads of time wasted in covering those grey strands, fitting in cloths one size small…just let,s embrace aging and no anti aging…

  3. I think I scrolled too fast to notice originally, but it’s not exactly the same to work into your text a found fragment and your placing of it and that whole final paragraph are really effective 🙂 enjoyed your first a to z post, hope to visit again, cheers

    1. Thank you for your kind compliment. I did enjoy writing this — I’m looking forward to the rest of the alphabet and checking out other posts.

  4. I’ve been looking forward to getting older most of my life.
    I began getting grays when I was 23, so even though I look young for 33, my hair looks more like a typical 40-year-old’s. I refuse to dye it. My graying hair is like a badge, attesting to all that I’ve been through. I sometimes feel I’ve lived several lifetimes in the span of 33 years. I’m still far from old, but I’ll be a badass old lady when I’m 100.
    Great post.

  5. I agree! Let’s be pro-aging. I’m still young, but as I’ve gotten older I’ve realized that age really does equal wisdom. Be who you are. Dropping by from A to Z Challenge, and this blog was spot on! Loved it.

  6. Yes, I love the idea of being more authentic, expressed, now. I feel the difference as I’ve gotten older, and yes, it is a benefit to aging. Thanks for a thoughtful piece!

    1. Authenticity seems to get easier as the years go by. It’s so nice not to be confined by other’s expectations. Thanks for your comment Lisa.

  7. Yes, I WILL join you! I feel better in my 40s than I ever felt when I was in my 20s and 30s and I look forward to getting older. I still have a ten year old at home and responsibilities I can’t shirk (no serving coffee just yet) but I am excited to get to the day I don’t give two fucks!

  8. Aging has actually made me work harder at getting healthier and that has been a good thing!

  9. Hey, Katie. I love your post. It is empowering. I thought when I turned sixty I’d be done with dieting, done with trying to please others, done with caretaking and giving. However, I turned sixty and I realized that is who I am and that is godd.

  10. I’m working on it, I really am. I still find myself fighting the aging thing. I want to not care. And I’m ashamed that I do! But damn, it’s hard! I do focus more on health and fitness now for longevity and prevention as opposed to just being “thin.” I want to be active as I age and that is a huge motivator for me!

    1. Staying active is a powerful motivation to look after myself. No use being a crazy old lady if I can’t get out of my chair 😀
      But even if circumstances turn against me and my body starts to wear out, I’ll still be full of life and opinions.

    1. Thank you for stopping by and taking the time to leave a comment. I don’t know if I’m particularly graceful about aging — more like disgraceful!

  11. I really love this post. I’m not saying that you’re doing this, but lately I feel like there’s some shaming going on regarding women who do dye their hair, who do buy the cremes, the makeup etc.etc., and I don’t like that. There are lots of different reasons why a woman might feel she needs to do all of that. For instance, if you’re somewhere around fifty, in certain careers, you are in someone’s gun sights every step of the way. And if you need that job to feed yourself, feed your kids, pay your rent, well, if the dye, the heels etc. help… I think we need to understand that not everyone has the luxury of accepting the aging process at the same rate and in the same way. I’m lucky, I just cut off my dyed brown hair, it’s short and grey. But tomorrow, at fifty-eight, if I had to go job hunting again? Thanks.


    1. I had five rounds of chemo and white fragile hair before 40. White hair made me feel even more washed out and ill. Colouring it until it grows out again has really helped me feel better and continue doing the work to get better. Aging is personal or it ought to be. (Which doesn’t mean cosmetic companies don’t mislead us about their products. Most do.)

      Drusilla Barron

    2. It’s difficult to champion a different way of looking at the world without making those who choose the ‘usual’ path feeling as though they are being shamed. It’s all a matter of personal choice and doing what makes you happy.
      The colour of your hair shouldn’t determine if you are employable or not, but maybe sometimes it does. I agree that not everyone is in a position to challenge the system, but unless some of us do, things will never change

  12. I’m in my 40’s now and not quite there yet to accept, but I do take inspiration from strong, beautiful people like you!

  13. I’m all for pro-aging and am so affirmed by your blog – thank you so much! I’m looking forward to reading more and feeling better each day about myself!

  14. oh yea! but I’m doing some of that stuff already. I stopped caring what others think quite a while ago, i think it was age 17. I’m me and people just have to take it or leave it.

    I won’t quit my job yet…. so i’m not fully there yet.

    And you are so right about the anti aging creams they don’t work. I actually get allergic reactions to them, so I stop buy the expensive stuff that just messes up my skin anyways. Just give me nice plain and simple moisturizer with a good sunblock included (cause we got loads of sun here, and I got sensitive skin) and I’m happy. 🙂

    1. Oh to have confidence at such an early age. It took me MUCH longer to get there, but well worth the wait.
      I didn’t mean to suggest that quitting your job had to be part of the equation – just that as you age you care less about status and more about happiness.

      1. ahhh. Yes. I stopped caring about status a long time ago too. There are more important things in life, than what kind of car you drive and what kind of cloths you wear, and what kind of moisturizer you put on. Go with what works for your skin. I realized that I was never going to fit in anyways.

  15. I so want a ballgown like that to wear when I go to Walmart.
    Every once in awhile, I look in the mirror and wish I could get ____ tightened. Neck. Eyes. Whatev. But each thing is adjacent to something ELSE that needs to be lifted or tucked or tightened, so there would be no end to it. (It reminds me of the Brady Bunch episode where a bedroom got painted, and that meant the hallway needed to be painted, and then the dining room, because it touched the hallway….)

  16. I’m in my late 30s now and it seems that we spend way too much time trying to look of any age but the one we are. And for what? I think we are lucky to get every day we get and we should celebrate that. Aging is something we all have to do. We should do so with health and humor. #mytwocents #atozchallenge

    1. Yes, life is so fragile and so many people are gone far too soon. We are beyond lucky to wake up each new morning and we should spend our time thinking about good things rather than mourning the loss of our youth.

  17. “Anti-aging” is certainly a lie not because there’s nothing that will help skin remain firm and toned, but because most “skincare” companies use a sprinkling of the therapeutic amount of something that really works. They claim their products contain “X” even when the amount is so miniscule, it makes no difference. Then again, companies are in business to pry our money out of our hands. Caveat emptor is still the rule we need to remember.

    Perhaps you’ll write another post about aging, but from this one, I get the impression that “pro-aging” is mean and selfish. Why not continue to care for people? Why destroy a relationship because it’s boring? Why not use some of the wisdom age brings to heal the relationship and jump start missing passion? And, if a person writes a memoir and reveals secrets about others, even secrets that involve her, she is setting herself up for litigation.

    I’d like aging to be graceful. I want aging to include all that I love and I want to love more than I did. I want to understand why I believe what I’ve always believed. I want to continue learning and growing and giving and receiving. Mostly, I want to be someone worth emulating so that younger women and men choose healthy things for themselves.

    Visiting from A to Z,

    Drusilla Barron

    1. Dearest Drusilla

      The whole point of the post was that as you get older you don’t give a fuck about what anyone else thinks.

      And that includes me.

      You don’t have to care if I’m mean and selfish. You can decide to do the exact opposite of everything I suggested. That’s absolutely, 100% what you should do if that’s what makes you happy.

      That’s all I’m advocating.

      Carry on.

  18. Hi, loved your post! I didn’t really appreciate being older (50+) until recently. My boss hired someone much younger, obviously because of her youth and beauty. I work directly with her and all I can say is that it’s fortunate for her that she has those things… Because I seem to outwit her, out-perform her and out-maneuver her at every single step. There is much to be said for life experience. I wish I could say she came in championing me, as an older female, wanting to partner up with me. But instead, she wanted to usurp me and prove she was more deserving. Not happening, sister! Not this time! I wish that women in different stages of life would be more unified, rather than trying to compete. We could accomplish so much more being unified rather than divided. But It’s gratifying to know that in exchange for some things, we acquire other things. I believe that those are the things that we can look forward to as we age! It’s all good!

  19. I’m 50 at the end of this year. I’ve lost a husband at age 52, and two good friends at 41 and 60 all within two years……………..

    If not now when? Is my new motto. I’m happily greying, as a brunette the horror of the white root runway was enough to put me off covering the greys when they started. I love my hair. It’s longer than it’s ever been, I’m wearing it in plaits like a kid sometimes and I could not give a crap what anyone thinks!

    And chickens in a ball gown? Well I often cook in Wellies so why not?

    I am doing work that I like and going off travelling next year alone. Live the backside off this life for as long as you have left.

  20. Once again you’ve given me reason to feel so lucky at having you in my life Katie, I’m starting to realize you’re one of my few personal role models. I heartily agree, what’s the point of aging if you don’t get to let go and enjoy it? I’m still a spring chicken on the human timeline, but even in just the few years since I was 19, I can see a lot of change in myself and feel sorry for younger-me and how obsessed I was with what others thought and how insecure and frightened I was to be myself… If I keep blooming as I get older, I’m more than happy to take the crows feet and grey hair and sagging skin that comes with it.

  21. Is that a photo of Debo, the Duchess of Devonshire? She adored her hens. And she was a stalwart of the Women’s Institute, of which I am a member. Now there’s a great organisation for women (in the UK), that has thousands of members of all ages. And proves that aging need not be irksome.

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