Helen Mirren wishes us to bid adieu to the beauty phrase, anti-ageing.
This word “anti-ageing” – we know we’re getting older. You just want to look and feel as great as you can on a daily basis.
~ Helen Mirren
She graces the cover of the September issue of Allure in which the magazine’s editor, Michelle Lee, vows that the publication will no longer use the term anti-ageing in its editorial.
This issue is the long-awaited, utterly necessary celebration of growing into your own skin — wrinkles and all. No one is suggesting giving up retinol. But changing the way we think about aging starts with changing the way we talk about aging.
With that in mind, and starting with this issue, we are making a resolution to stop using the term “anti-aging.” Whether we know it or not, we’re subtly reinforcing the message that aging is a condition we need to battle — think anti-anxiety meds, anti-virus software, or anti-fungal spray.
~ Michelle Lee, Editor’s Letter, Allure, September 2017
Bolstering their point of view for this Beauty Movement, as they are calling it, is a post on their website entitled, 29 Celebrities Who Are Against The Term Anti-Aging. However, when you actually read the series of quotes, this categorisation is rather deceptive. These famous and beautiful faces express a very positive philosophy of ageing, but not necessarily a negative view of the nomenclature. What many are vocal about opposing, however, is Botox, plastic surgery, or somehow altering your face.
Ironically, Allure also has an article in their skincare section entitled, Should I Get Botox In My 20s? Of the eight people the author polled for their opinion—Mum, boyfriend, colleagues, dermatologists— 4 voted YES; 1 voted NO; 2 were supportive either way; and 1 was neutral but factual:
Once you start doing it, it’s going to be a while. You’re 26, so you’ll be doing Botox for 60 years.
~ Patricia Wexler, dermatological surgeon in New York City
The other “expert” was either mis-quoted or incomprehensible:
It’s definitely more popular among young people because a lot of them are seeing themselves more than previous generations.
~ Min S. Ahn, facial plastic surgeon based in Boston
Perhaps Sara Kinonen should have asked Cate, Drew, Halle, Heidi, or Julliane:
I hate to condemn people for [getting Botox], but I don’t believe it makes people look better. I think it just makes them look like they had something done to their face, and I don’t think we instinctively find that appealing. We think we do, but then when you look at somebody who’s had their face altered in some way, it just looks weird. We recognize emotionally that that’s not what we look like, that there’s something off. You don’t want to take away what makes a face look human.
~ Julianne Moore, Allure, November 2010
So, is Allure’s anti anti-ageing a marketing ploy?
Do we need to ban words?
I think not.
Celebrities are touted as role-models for older women, as Mirrren herself is, yet the star herself takes issue with the word beauty:
Maybe we’re attractive, interesting, or mesmerizing, but 90 percent of women are not what you’d call beautiful. Of course, beauty is inside, but still it’s a word. When it’s tied to pictures of people and amazing outfits on girls who can wear that stuff, it’s intimidating for the rest of us.
~ Helen Mirren
So are we going to expunge that word next?
Mirren is the spokes-model for L’Oréa Paris and the face of their Age Perfect line, but recently stated
I’m an eternal optimist – I know that when I put moisturiser on it probably does f— all, but it just makes me feel better.
~ Helen Mirren
Mirren may want us to forget anti-ageing, but in a promo video the English actress advises us not to forget ménages à trois.
Doesn’t every 72 year-old have a young, tattooed lover?
Allure thinks so.
Just don’t say anti-ageing.
POST PHOTO: Helen Mirren via Allure