For most women over 50 applying an anti wrinkle face cream is as routine as brushing your teeth. We have been told that in order to keep ourselves looking younger than our mothers did, we need to invest in the new and improved products that were not available 30 years ago. But as each day as we look in the mirror some of us are starting to ask the question– “Is there a secret to aging gracefully?”
According to an article in the New York Times, if there is a secret to aging well, French women must know it. In fact many American’s have the belief that they must have special insights into the aging process. But do French women really have the answers when it comes to staying young or do they just have better anti wrinkle face cremes?
The truth is that women on both sides of the Atlantic understand that aging well is a challenge that is affected by genetics, sun exposure and habits such as smoking. But looking attractive, at any age, does seem to be more socially important to the French. In France beauty is a tradition handed down from generation to generation. A survey by the market research company Mintel found that 33 percent of French girls between 15 and 19 already use anti-aging or anti-wrinkle face creams.
So beyond using anti wrinkle face creams what are the secrets to aging gracefully like a French woman? Here are 10 tips from the New York Times:
Look out for yourself
“Frenchwomen are more elegant, more aware of their femininity,” says Dr. Michel Soussaline, a Paris plastic surgeon. “They simply take care of themselves better.”
Keep it natural
Heavy makeup emphasizes wrinkles and pores. A little blush, mascara and lip color are all most Frenchwomen use.
French women use lotions and hydrating creams for the face (and body), often applied with a cosmetics sponge that provides enough abrasiveness to remove dead cells but not hurt delicate skin.
The wonder of water
Frenchwomen swear by cold-water rinses for face-cleaning, shampoo and shower. They say it improves circulation, bringing all-important oxygen to the skin cells.
French women of a certain age maintain their weight by eating carefully: fresh, never-processed, foods, especially fruits and vegetables, in small portions. If they do put on the pounds, they take them off immediately.
Aside from lots of walking, most French women do not exercise. They go to a spa instead.
The doctor is in
Frenchwomen love their dermatologists. Why take a chance with over-the-counter skin remedies, when doctors can provide treatments that really work. Lucky for them,the visits are largely covered by the French medical system.
The surgeon is in
If a French woman opts for cosmetic surgery, her objective is to look like herself – not someone 20 years younger.
The overall look
Even when they dress casual, French women never try to dress like their daughters. They do, however use accessories, good jewelry, fantastic shoes, and a scarf casually wrapped to conceal those neck wrinkles.
As the French writer Françoise Sagan wrote: “A dress makes no sense unless it inspires men to take it off you.” Buy some fun, new underwear.