Even if you’re not into resolutions, I think we all like to make promises to ourselves around New Year. It’s a time of promise – new starts for all! The time of year that gyms relish, almond milk sales soar and the 2kg kettle bell you bought in Aldi gets pulled out from under the stairs. I can be different – I know I can!
I kind of know by now that I can’t. But I am human and I have hope.
This year I’m all about my face. And if that sounds a little vain and self-centred, well, it is. A few years ago I bumped into a good friend’s Mum in town. She looked so good – stylishly dressed, understated make-up, hair and nails that were done, polished. Whatever magazine is relevant would have given her a ten. I like to let people know when they look good and I did. She threw her eyes up slightly; ‘When you’re a little older, it just takes extra effort’. At 26 I knew to store that one away for days like today. Or yesterday if I’d had any sense. Last year even. Oh those wasted days I could have been moisturising.
Up until the age of 35 I rubbished the idea of having plastic surgery – but that’s because I was young. Young, naive and foolish. Now I’m not ruling anything out – except perhaps botox, which continues to make mainly women look – not younger – just weirder. You might look smoother lady, but you still look every day of 75. Or 37. Or 21 even. I’ve heard from sources in Cork – yes, lovely little Cork, nestled in the Southern arms of the Emerald Isle – that botox is quite the new-normality now for post-teens. You can even nip out and get it done during your weekend job lunch break. That can only be a steady slope. If I were them, I’d put away my money and just get a face lift at 45. Using Kris Jenner’s surgeon. That woman just gets younger and younger…
And that’s not even entirely my goal, to keep looking younger, but there is nothing like turning 40 to bring you to a peak in your life that gives you a pretty good view of the ‘other side’. That ‘other side’ where things won’t particularly work as well or stand up as well or be disguisable under make-up as well. There are elements of that which are very freeing, but that piece of advice about making the effort? It’s stuck, because we all like to look well.
There’s something about putting on a bit of make-up – a little concealer, fill in the eyebrows (mine are now depressingly invisible without some kind of cosmetic aid. I look like an Oompa Loompa without help from my brow pencil), a dash of mascara, bronzer to accentuate the cheek bones, eyeliner for glamour. Make-up is like a subtle layer of armour for me – it makes me feel better about myself, more confident in my skin. Is that shallow? I don’t particularly care. It’s a wonderful accentuater.
And being a Mum, the neglect creeps in and the rate of decrepitude creeps up. Slowly but surely. You just don’t have the time. You’re too exhausted to brush your teeth, let alone apply a face cream twice a day. Plus serums, eye creams and a twice-weekly exfoliation? That’s more attention than the poor dog gets. And as for make-up, it’s practically an impossibility when you only have one hand free because you’re either carrying a baby around or breaking up a toddler row. (Except in the case of my eyebrows – if you see me without any eyebrows, it’s an unofficial official cry for help).
Anyhow, as yet I will not be resorting to a face lift as, truth be known, I am not disciplined enough to save the money. I’m a terrible saver and given the option to go on holiday or out for dinner (or in the face of charming buskers with accordions), it all goes out the door. However, I’ve decided to make a concerted effort on the creams front. Between my last birthday, a bet on a particular horse and this Christmas, I have accumulated a few very lovely lotions and potions that I am trusting with my very life – well, my diminishing youth at least. I have been fairly good to apply them regularly, pretty committed to a routine. I reckon I’m seeing results – but, then again, I can’t be certain. Worth a go though, don’t you think? Better now than at 50.
My good husband was wondering why I was taking longer than usual in the bathroom the other night. I explained I had a strict beauty regime to adhere to and needed time to apply my night cream.
‘You’d be as well off drink a glass of water’.
Wait until next Christmas when I’m asking for a voucher for botox. Did I just come full-circle on the botox thing? I repeat, steady slope.