I was recently reminded about the importance of embracing beauty at every age and how revolutionary of a concept this is when I read an Instagram post by Rachel Brice - a strong, beautiful, inspiring dance instructor and performer. She was celebrating her 47th trip around the sun and commented that on her search for makeup and skincare for “mature skin” she was recommended, among other atrociously-named items, a “wrinkle revenge” product… (Insert jaw drop)
Yes, our skin changes as we age. It becomes thinner, rougher, often drier, sometimes hyperpigmented, and even hairier. We can absolutely choose to use supportive topical products, implement dietary and lifestyle changes, and even use facial rejuvenation acupuncture to support the health, longevity, and balance of our skin. (Read more about Facial Rejuvenation Acupuncture Here!) However, I refuse to accept that we must take revenge on any part of our body! I refuse to be anti-aging, anti-wrinkle, anti-anything about my body and it’s natural processes - and I encourage you to jump on the refusal bandwagon with me! There is a deep healing that can happen when we shake off the limitations of conventional beauty standards that have been sold to us and instead create our own definitions of what is beautiful.
My personal definition of beauty includes words like health, function, movement, joy, contentment, connection, laughter, and vitality. These are the observations, questions I ask myself and treatments I use to nourish my own beauty:
When I am not feeling beautiful, it means that I am not nourishing myself in some way.
When my skin is dehydrated or rough from too much exposure to sun or wind it looks older and more wrinkled - much like earth looks when it dries up. The solution is often to drink more water and eat nourishing, hydrating foods, avoid too much direct sun, and gently wash and exfoliate the skin before applying nourishing oils like jojoba or rosehip oil.
When my eyes are puffy or my skin looks inflamed I turn to my diet - have I been indulging in wine or sweets? Have I lacked sleep and had more coffee than water? Is it allergy season?
When my eyes look dull and tired and my lips small and tight, I look at my self care practices. Have I spent time with friends, time relaxing, time laughing, or have I been overworking, stressed, grumpy, unsatisfied?
When my body feels stiff and tight the remedy is more regular movement: yoga, dancing, hiking, swimming. I check in with how I have been sleeping and fueling my body and make changes accordingly.
When I feel that I have done what I can to create balance via self-care and still need support, then I turn to my acupuncturist for hands-on treatment and Chinese herbs and to my massage therapist to support improved fluidity and circulation.
My hopes in sharing this is to inspire you to broaden how you think of your beauty regimen. Beauty does not come from a bottle, it comes from within. When we are nourished on the inside - physically, spiritually, and emotionally - we appear more beautiful on the outside. When we are inviting joyful and creative moments, allowing ourselves time to slow down, eating and sleeping well, making time for our friends and family - it is in these moments that our physical beauty will shine it’s brightest no matter our age, wrinkles, spots, dots, or chin hairs!
“A woman is born with a certain amount of life essence and, as she ages, it transforms into wisdom. That is to say, her life culminates in wisdom, not emptiness.”
- Claudia Welch “Balance your Hormones, Balance your Life”