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94 Responses to “Wrinkle, Wrinkle Little Star”

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  1. Olga

    I am 32 now, always being concerned what others will think of me. I need to learn do not care about such a bs. Thank you for your great post! Loved it and love you!

  2. Natalie

    What a super fantastic post. I love love that 85 year old woman and her attitude! How wonderful! I pledge to never speak ill of another woman because of her appearance. More importantly for me, and exponentially more difficult, I also pledge to try very very hard to not beat up on myself for my appearance.

  3. Love this post! Sometimes I color my hair, sometimes I don’t. Sometimes I wear makeup, but most of the time I don”t. Maybe I’ll shave my legs, if I feel like it. It all depends on what I FEEL like doing!! I will go and get a facial because I love the pampering and a super clean face NOT because of any other youth producing gimmicks that can be brought forth. I love pedicures because of how it FEELS when I get it and I love looking at my Revlon “Cherries in the Snow” toes when it is all done. It is not about the retention of youth but how I feel in my skin. I will be 55 in September and I have spent years trying to do it right, but when I hit my mid-40’s I realized that it is ALL ABOUT ME!! I take care of my skin because it FEELS better not makes it look younger and that sums up how I operate. I want to feel good and healthy in my skin and there is nothing wrong with taking care of it. Sometimes I want to play and do something different so I will but it is for me!!! NOT for anyone else’s expectation of me. I love me, my wrinkles, my sags, my grey hairs or my highlights. Once I take care of me, my cup runneth over and then I can take care of the rest of my life! I pledge to honor me in all my needs and wants and ironies and facets and fun and spirit! You go, girl~!

  4. Lynn

    Amen, sister! And what about all the chemical we are putting onto and into our bodies while we buy into all that anti-aging junk?

  5. SueJon

    And there’s a problem with living in an RV?

  6. Tosha Smith

    Wow!!!! That is an amazing post!!! I am so inspired and with you 100%! We are beautiful just the way we are!!!!! Thank you so much for sharing!!!

  7. GracieSF

    Count me in on that pledge! I just turned 41, and have witnessed first hand how well the advertising and marketing has worked on my own mother. She has spent countless $$$ over the years in search of the next miracle cream or cosmetic that never lived up to its promise, despite my insistence that she didn’t need them to be beautiful. That has likely inspired me to head in the opposite direction recently – refusal to cover my emerging grays, keeping the makeup to a minimum, going (mostly!) no ‘poo, and generally putting my money and time into more important things than feeding the youth-above-all marketing machine. And I am much happier this way. Where I need to focus is in helping other women around me, and those that I meet going forward, to feel the same way about themselves – and I will!

  8. BlushingBeetle

    Wow. What a great post. That 85 year old woman makes me happy to be alive. That is such a good way to live. I’ll take your pledge.

  9. Veronica

    I have to tell you. I am 36 and have been getting grayer every year since I was about 27. I let it go for a long time, until people started noticing and making comments to me. So I started coloring my hair to hide the gray. I did it for other people, not for myself. That’s very sad to say. I think my days of coloring may be over thanks to this post.
    I stand with you to never speak ill of other women again!

  10. I love this so much. I’m 42 and I take care of my skin, but I’m not afraid of aging. I’ve been through a lot in my life and when I reach the end I want my face to look like I really lived. Given what my husband is going through, not only am I not afraid of aging, I consider every year I’m granted on this earth a privilege and a gift. I’m not going to waste this beautiful life worrying about something I ultimately cannot change.

  11. Christina

    You are awesome! I completely agree!!!!

  12. Angel S.

    Hey Leslie … here’s a great song relevant to your post (I think) “Skin” by Greg Tamblyn. You can listen for free. :) The lyrics are there too.

    http://www.broadjam.com/GregTamblyn

  13. I just turned 45 and feel as good about what I look like as I ever have in my life. I look like a WOMAN, baby, not a girl! I look at my arms, spotted with small freckles and brown spots, and see the reflection of my beautiful 101-yr old gramma whom I miss more than anyone in the world. Seeing her on my skin makes a lump in my throat and I wear her with pride. I color my hair with henna, not chemicals. I love the way it feels, so bouncy and shiny and healthy, with a natural red glow. I have the blessing of good genes and look 10 years younger than I actually am but I don’t really worry too much about the wrinkles and spots I see appearing. They are me. I earned them. I loved this post.

  14. Ashley Strachey

    This is a very truthful article. I’m 23, I don’t ever wear makeup or even earrings, and my nose is a lot bigger than what society thinks is pretty. Honestly, I do feel less “pretty” sometimes because of my makeup-less, big-nosed face. But:

    1. I’ve watched my younger sister wear makeup since she was about 14. Her identity is so wrapped up in it; she won’t go in the rain, because it’ll ruin her makeup. She won’t spontaneously do anything in the morning, because she has to get her face ready. She can’t crash at a friend’s house after a long night if she didn’t bring her makeup. Her purse is pounds heavier when she DOES remember her makeup. Basically, if her face is bare and natural, she feels hideous.

    2. My nose is from my Roman heritage, which I get from my mother. And she is a beautiful woman, despite not having a “normal” nose.

    So basically, yes, I do worry sometimes about these silly things that society wants me to care about. But I see people suffering to fit into society’s norms, and I know I can’t live like that. Plus, as the woman you met said, confidence will radiate so far that everyone around you can see it. You don’t need to look ‘normal,’ you just need to love who you are.

  15. I’ll take this pledge! I’m only 28 but it kills me how every time you open a magazine there are articles about wrinkle creams and treatments and all this stuff you should start doing practically before your born. What ever happened to aging gracefully? And if you take care of yourself now, inside and out, no matter your age, you’ll be happy with yourself in the future. Yeah, everyone does things that are bad for them and their skin, like tanning, or whatever but that’s LIFE. Whats the point if all you’re going to do is worry about this wrinkle here or this bump there? Go out and live. Then when you do get the wrinkles and the sagging and the grey hairs, you can say that every bit is worth it because you’ve earned them.

    Not only that, but all these creams and surgeries and all this stuff is relatively new in the grand scheme of things…who knows what they are actually going to do to your body several years down the road? Probably nothing good.

  16. Melissa

    I was just talking about this with my 18 yr daughter today! I am turning 39 this month and though sometimes thats just a bit scarry, I love who I am now. I decided long ago to stop comparing myself to others; whether I thought they looked better than me or worse than me. It’s amazing how changing one thing about how I view others not only helped my attidude toward those around me, but also changed how I saw myself. And now I have been able to instill in my daughter the same attidude toward others and herself. And in turn she has been able to encourage her friends. What an amazing difference we can all make just being ourselves! Thank you Crunchy Betty for reminding us of the individual beauty we all have. I will continue to let mine shine!

  17. Wiccitywack

    I applaud you for this post. This needed to be said and you said it. I stumbled upon your blog only a few short days ago and I am glad I did. Thank you for this post. I. Am. In. 100%.

  18. Kristina

    It was a pleasure to read! Thank you!

  19. I pledge! And thank you for posting this.

  20. Deb

    All I can say is, “Thank you.” As a woman of 55, I am just now getting slowly ot the place where I am questioning why I would have to work so hard for plastic perfection? Who is it that is actually keeping track? Oh, yes, the “boys on the corner”. exactly. I have wasted more money than I wnat to think about trying to make sure that they, all of those anonymous men out there, will think that I am SOMETHING! And, I am ashamed to say, that so much of my trying for perfection actually had to do with making sure that I was the prettiest. It was all about making sure that I stood out over my isters….and that is shameful to me. I was the Evil Queen staring into my mirror, not Snow White! So….I gladly take the pledge! I will never again trash another woman and I will continue to grow in my acceptance of myself as a beutiful, intelligent, caring woman….JUST AS I AM!

  21. Oh! This made me cry, big sloppy happy tears! Sign me up! I’ll take the pledge. I finally decided to go completely gray recently and you know what? I LOVE the way my hair looks, love it. It’s pretty. I also love the new lines around my mouth, they give my face character..I’ve always had a penchant for loving these little things that pop up as I mature, I want to guard that fiercely now, protect it and encourage it in others. It feels good.

  22. zerp

    great post, but i think society is just the way it is, and i’m gonna go along with it. of course, it’s absolutely fantastic if you are able to embrace yourself but i don’t think i ever will, and i don’t want to. for me, it’s more stress to look old than to put on sunscreen everyday.

  23. *happy sigh*
    I can’t wait to be the woman with gray dreadlocks.
    In the mean time, I realized that smoking cigarettes (my only poison, how silly) was making me wrinkled at the ripe old age of 32. So I stopped.

  24. thelittleforest

    I stopped obsessing over my looks about 5 years ago, when I was turning 30 and really didn’t care but everybody kept saying “oh, you’re in your thirties. now you’re getting old!”. I never understood what was so bad about not being 20-something anymore. I’m happier than ever, I have more experience in life, people are taking me more seriously. Although people do tend to think I’m younger than I am. I know I’m supposed to take that as a compliment but I don’t really like it when they say it. I’d rather be judged on what I do. Marieke

  25. Ashley Meyer

    I am 24, so I can’t say much yet, but I do relate to this post in a way. Many of the things I do now, like moisturizing with oil and not getting too much sun, are done with the thought in mind that it will help me maintain my appearance as I get older.
    Wow. How pervasive is the myth that youth equals beauty. Even as I try to make myself healthier, there is also a portion of my mind that says “PLUS I won’t get as many wrinkles as the deeply tanned and dyed girls, I win!” Sigh. I consider myself to appreciate age, but that mindset is deep. I will have to keep working on it.
    Also, I am reminded of a quote “Do not be afraid of growing older. It is a privilege denied to many.”

  26. Sarah

    I love this post! I’m at the wee age of 18 and I already have laugh lines and slight creases where I furrow my eyebrows (which is a lot). I love them! I think that wrinkles tell a story and are nothing to be ashamed of. I’ve decided that I’m never going to try to cover up my future gray hairs. I think it’s cool that someday I’m going to have silver hair!

  27. At 53 years old, four years into peri-menopause (or whatever it’s called), an empty-nester, a blogger, etc., I feel for the first time in my life that I am living fully as ME. No explanations, no excuses, and no regrets. I am loving who I am more every single day. Still haven’t quite embraced my grey hair. That’s a work in progress! :) I have always loved my birthdays and with each decade, I love my life more. How awesome is that! Great article, Crunchy Betty!

  28. b

    What a beautiful and elegantly worded post! I am 28, with several grey hairs (they started when I was 21) and I love every single one. I’ve even yelled at a friend who tried to pluck them off my head. I’ll probably be fully grey by 35, and I will be thrilled. My husband even tells me I have to grey faster! =) I happen to think about this particular topic quite a bit. I work at a health club and see all shapes, sizes and ages come through on a daily basis, and I wonder what I will look like when I’m older. If I end up looking like my mother, I have nothing to worry about!
    I also think about this because I have not fallen ON the band wagon and spend my hard earned cash on make-up, hair dyes, or anti-wrinkle creams. Even when I notice that laugh line that sticks around longer than maybe I would like it to. However, I have women come up to me and applaud me for not wearing make-up, because they notice. Even a few men have commented that they like the sans make-up look much better. (They are in the minority….) I hope that if I have little girls that I can pass on this same message to them so that they value who they are AND how they look, even if they are not what society would call beautiful.
    Thanks again.

  29. Jelly house

    I take this pledge! As a redheaded, freckly woman I have had to avoid the sun my whole life. I would like to add pale to the new beautiful list please. My husband, also a redheaded freckly guy, just went for treatment for skin cancer on his lip. It was a reminder of what we sometimes will do, (tan unprotected) to feel like we are beautiful. My mother never showed me how to wear makeup so I never have. I have been gray since I was 30 and figure it was all the adventure that created those hairs. I stopped buying into the lotions and notions, as I call it, of beauty years ago and am glad for it. I am beautiful as I am gray haired, wrinkled, pale and naked faced! I never felt that way when I was younger, but 40 shook a lot of doubts out of my head and confidence and apathy for what others thought about me marched right in. Thank you for reminding me to support my sisters and to love who I am right in this moment.

  30. Nickie

    I can’t remember where I read it, but in one of the books I read as a child, someone said that wrinkles were the memories of smiles. I’ve always loved the idea that your loves and life and laughter are somehow mapped onto your face.

  31. I love this. Though I will admit to coloring my gray, partly out of just plain vanity, but also because I had my child just before turning 37 and don’t want to be mistaken for his grandmother when we’re out and about. It’s my one non-eco-friendly indulgence.
    As for skin–I read a wonderful novel years ago called “Zenzele” in which an African grandmother talks to her granddaughter about her wrinkles, and each one recalls a story: this one is from when your mother got seriously hurt, this one is from when I stayed up all night waiting for you to be born, this one happened when… you get the idea. It made me look at getting older in a different way, as a celebration of the accumulated experiences of life.
    I wash my face with a homemade blend of olive oil, witch hazel, and strawberries which is supposed to have anti-aging properties–all I know is it feels and smells great. If it helps down the road, so much the better. If it doesn’t, so what?

  32. Ruth Lindsay

    Finding a Long Gray Hair
    by Jane Kenyon

    I scrub the long floorboards
    in the kitchen, repeating
    the motions of other women
    who have lived in this house.
    And when I find a long gray hair
    floating in the pail,
    I feel my life added to theirs.

  33. Sheena

    I linked back to you in this post: http://junglejourney.wordpress.com/2012/07/16/you-are-beautiful/

    The quote toward the end of this post literally left me with tears running down my face. I was sitting here reading it at 6 this morning, and I couldn’t stop myself. Thank you for posting it, I needed that. :)

  34. Anne

    I pledge, Crunchy Betty! I happily join you in this pledge. ~ You lift my spirits and awareness every time I read your wonderful and inspiring and fun posts. Thanks!

  35. Kak

    Holy cow, Leslie. That was beautiful. I’m sharing this with my two amazing sisters RIGHT NOW. Thank you. <3

  36. stupidbaby

    Inspired partially by my mom’s beautiful gray-streaked hair and my desire for low/no-maintenance hair, I’m seriously considering going natural with my prematurely gray hair (I’m 28 and saw my first gray hair at 16). I’m too lazy…err… efficient for make up and the like so it seems kind of funny that I do all this crap to my hair while thinking it’s a waste of time to do it to my face.

  37. JuJo

    I will say only this: when I was in college, I had a chemistry professor in her early 30s who never wore makeup. One day I asked her why, and she said “do you know what’s in that stuff?” That was from a woman with a PhD in organic chemistry. If that’s not enough to convince you makeup isn’t worth it, I don’t know what is.

  38. Chelle

    I pledge with a glad heart. May I reach 85 with EXACTLY that attitude! What a woman! May we all follow in this wise womans footsteps… Love and light, Sisters x x

  39. Amy

    This is such an awesome post. Your words are beautiful, honest, and true! I just turned 32 and am starting to see signs of age – more lines, a lot more cellulite, a less than perky butt, etc. What has caught me by surprise is that I FEEL prettier than I ever have in my life. I would have been horrified by all these things when I was 25 and still holding myself up to all the ideals of beauty we are presented with day by day. But in my experience I’ve found out that it feels so much better to show signs of age and not care as much than it is to look young and “flawless” and be very concerned with appearances. It’s a relief. It really drives home how it is important to consciously reject the premise that we are somehow less worthy the less “perfect” we look, and so important to talk about it in the open. That premise is such an illusion that is fed to us, a manufactured perspective that has no basis in reality. I think the more voices like yours speak out so eloquently, the more this perspective will change. Thanks Crunchy Betty!!

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