Tuesday, November 22, 2011

3 Reasons Women Look Better With Age

There's no avoiding it; our appearance is destined to change as we grow older.  Many of us dread the signs of aging because we've bought into the media hype that natural conditions like gray hair and wrinkles are ugly and unacceptable.

Well, I'm here to present an alternate view. Looking older does not mean looking worse! Women in their forties, fifties and beyond can look fantastic while still looking our age. We may not be as firm or unlined as we were in our 20s,  but we have some distinct advantages over our younger selves.

1. We've grown into our looks. As full-fledged women, our appearance expresses not only our heredity, but our personality, character and values. We've lost the baby fat, so to speak, and are emerging as distinctive, unique individuals. We're growing to look more authentically like ourselves - the glorious women we're meant to be - and nothing is more attractive  than that.
Coco Chanel
As Coco Chanel famously said, "Nature gives you the face you have at twenty; it is up to you to merit the face you have at fifty."

2. We're more confident. When we were young we blossomed with health and energy yet were plagued by doubts and insecurities. Now that we're older, we're past all the bullshit of asking for permission or caring what people think. We've got purpose and conviction and an agenda, dammit, and we're not looking to be rescued. This self-assuredness that comes with years is magnetic and sexy, and is cited as a main reason younger men say they are drawn to older women.

There's a kind of confidence that comes when you're in your 40s and 50s, and men find that incredibly attractive.”
Peggy Northrup, former Editor More Magazine

3. We have a better sense of style. Women over forty have learned how to dress. We've come to terms with our bodies and our lives and understand the styles and colors that work best for us. Once, we were tempted by the latest trends; now we invest in clothes that flatter, uplift and last. Oh boy, when I think of some of the awful looks I've sported over the years, I shudder. It took me a few decades to finally get it - I'm curvy and short. Pleated pants, loud prints, capris, ruffles, and shoulder pads might look good on a tall, lanky chicks, but they're banished from my wardrobe for ever. As are perms. Yikes.

For examples of all sorts of women who look better in their 40s and 50's than they ever did in their 20s, check out this gallery from More Magazine.  For fun, I've included some pics of my own.

Me at age 25
Me now, 48

And if you are over 40 and aren't feeling all that fabulous - girl, now's the time to shake things up! Here are some other posts that might interest you:

Thursday, November 17, 2011

'Tis the Season for my Holiday Shopping Code of Conduct

The holidays are here, at least as far as retailers are concerned. I haven't even planned my Thanksgiving dinner, but the stores have been bedecked in Winter Wonderland themes and blaring Christmas carols since Halloween.

Some of you chicks have probably already finished your holiday shopping and, while I'm impressed by your efficiency, I'm resentful. Because the rest of us are about to become part of a teeming hoard of stressed-out, deal-seeking, time-crunched shoppers.

To make the experience more pleasant for all of us, I ask everyone to adhere to my Holiday Shopping Code of Conduct.

1. Give each other space.  The stores are crowded, but we still need our personal space. The ideal distance to maintain is a full arm's length, but at the very least do not touch, poke, or rub against another person with your body or belongings. It's upsetting.
2. Practice good line etiquette. No matter how merry, please refrain from whistling, talking loudly on your phone, or flossing your teeth (yes, I've actually seen this.) And move along with the line! Nothing is more frustrating than a shopper who doesn't notice when it's time to step up.
3. Stay home if you're sick. If you are hacking, sneezing, coughing or contagious, do us all a favor and shop online. We can't afford to get sick and besides, your body noises and mucus gross us out.
4. Wear actual clothes. Let's all agree that pjs are not acceptable attire in public - even on black Friday. C'mon, how hard is it to put on some pants? And while you're at it, put on deodorant too.

1. Let us pay the way we want. I know it's your job to ask me for my email and phone number and to join your frequent shopper program and open a credit card and donate to your charity. But if I choose not to participate, don't roll your eyes and snap huffily, "Well, fine, if you don't want to save 15%!" Call me crazy, but I just want to use my Visa.
2. Say "You're welcome." One of my pet peeves is the expression "no problem" as a response to my sincere thank you. It better not be a problem; I gave you a bunch of money! Instead of reassuring me that I didn't inconvenience you, why not say "glad to help" or "my pleasure" or  simply, "enjoy"?
3. Give thoughtful freebies. Everyone loves bonuses and samples, but the treat I'm most grateful for is a little bottle of chilled water that I can take a swig from, then slip into my purse. This is so nice! We shoppers work up a powerful thirst.

Spread the cheer. If you have a chance to help another shopper out, do it. Share a tip or a coupon, hold the door for a mom struggling with a stroller, put items back neatly where you found them. And above all, use good manners. Everyone's nerves are frayed this time of year and a smile or kind word can go a long way toward making the season bright.

If you have any suggestions for a better holiday shopping experience, let me hear from you.

Otherwise, I'll see you at the mall!

Monday, November 14, 2011

Cool Cocktail for the Holidays

I made this drink for some girlfriends over the weekend,  and it was as pretty, bubbly and yummy as my guests.

The fresh squeezed lime is the secret ingredient - plan on squeezing lots of 'em. Oh, and my recipe should read  2 oz cranberry juice (not actual cranberries.)