I have always heard women complain about their wrinkles or their chicken neck or their dark circles or whatever and whenever any woman complains about it to me I always think, “I wouldn’t have even noticed it if she hadn’t pointed it out.”
As I started getting wrinkles it didn’t phase me too much. I’m getting older. It happens. That’s a sign of getting older, right? I mean, we’re SUPPOSED to have wrinkles. Some people are fine with this, others feel they should use a plastic surgeon like Dr. Ramsen Azizi. We should all do what is best for us. But then there seemed to – overnight – be an increase in ads on every web page I visit for products that help get rid of wrinkles or bags under the eyes and suddenly, I’m looking at my face differently.
AND I DO NOT LIKE THAT. Does the internet know I’m 40 now? Why are these ads on every page I visit? I was reading an article about the income gap in the middle class and right there on the sidebar: BEFORE/AFTER WRINKLE/NO WRINKLE AD. What the hell internet?
We all know I’m not the most secure person in the world. But I like my face. I know my eyebrows need shaping or shading or whatever, but I like my smile and my face. And I don’t want to hate my wrinkles or the bags under my eyes or the skin under my neck (SKIN THAT WESLEY LIKES TO PLAY WITH…STOP THAT, KID) because those are just signs of aging and I don’t hate aging. I don’t hate aging at all, I’m proud of every year and I celebrate every birthday. I loved turning 40. That’s a GREAT number!
Nikki had to take some picture of me for work last week. I put my camera on “auto” and she took this one. I’m wearing some powder/foundation stuff, some mascara, and some lipgloss. And y’all? I like this picture. I don’t see wrinkles, I see a happy lady who is not 20 anymore. That’s it.
But I keep seeing these before/after picture in ads on every page I visit (maybe I need to clear my cookies?), and these women have less wrinkles than I do in the “before” pictures. And I’m suddenly looking in the mirror differently and wondering: Do these women look at my face and think “I could do something about those wrinkles.”?
Here’s a much less flattering picture. Bathroom lighting. Morning pillow wrinkles. Last night’s mascara. Red skin which I’ve never loved. But y’all? I still don’t hate the bags under my eyes or my wrinkles. Some other people prefer to use surgeons that could apply Chemical Skin Peels in New York to reduce wrinkles and protect from sun damage. I mean, I definitely want to wake up a little and maybe get out from under that terrible lighting, but that face…that face is the face of a woman who is no longer 20. I’m learning to love myself, my smile, my eyes…And I don’t want to hate the wrinkles. I AM 40. Isn’t it okay that I look 40?
I don’t like that I’m doubting myself suddenly in ways I didn’t doubt myself before. I’m trying to LOVE myself more, so this new voice in my head that’s whispering about my wrinkles or the bags under my eyes…this voice needs to go away. I’m working on getting rid of those voices, I don’t need new ones.
The ads that show the acne scar treatment in 10 minutes or the sun spots disappearing, I get those. Those are more than signs of aging. I get that women want to get rid of those…but the wrinkles that we all get? I hate seeing those in before/after photos. I also hate that the creams and stuff those ads are promoting are super-expensive so – basically – are we also creating another economic hurdle for women? Is this industry now basically offering middle class women a way to look young forever and poor women are just screwed? Because none of these ads I’ve seen are for lotions under $10. I use cetaphil moisturizer. $10 for a tub that lasts me a couple of months.
What are your thoughts? Have you always seen these ads so they don’t phase you? Is the “increase” happening only to me or is there really more marketing and promotion to “get rid of signs of aging” on the internet? Aren’t we supposed to age? I don’t understand what happened now where every ad I’m seeing is constantly showing these before/after pictures of “Pretty Woman With Wrinkles” and “Pretty Woman Without Wrinkles” when I’m just seeing pretty women who are not 20 anymore. AND ISN’T THAT OKAY?
There’s a lot of talk about fat shaming and how we’re doing an injustice to our girls for talking about how we want to be skinnier when we should be talking about HEALTH. But what about this talk of wrinkles? If we’re constantly bombarded by ads telling us how to get rid of them, do we suddenly set these unrealistic visions of how a person is supposed to look as they age? As in…they’re not supposed to look like they’re aging?
I DO NOT KNOW BUT I DO NOT WANT TO HATE MY WRINKLES. And I find myself starting to hate them. So…do I just have to stay off the internet forever now? I CAN’T QUIT YOU, INTERNET.