There comes a point in the life of a Boomer woman when she looks in the mirror and begins to gently pull her neck skin back to see what she used to look like. I’ve done this many times. Sometimes I’ll even use my hair clips to hold the thin, tender skin in place. Though I can achieve a thirty-something neck, I find it hard to get the natural, balanced look for the rest of my face. You see, if I pull the skin to tuck behind the ears, I risk pulling too much and then it’s the “Beverly Hills Trout Mouth”. Actually, it’s the same challenge plastic surgeons seem to have. So which way do I want to age? Horizontal or vertical?
It’s the law here in L.A. Pulling, sucking, nipping, sewing, swelling is a way of life here. If you don’t do it yourself, they’ll come in the middle of the night and suck the fat from your ass and put it in your lips! Grandmas are downright scary here. Everywhere I look there’s a “Trout”. I go to Safeway—Trout. Go to the Gap—Trout. Cleaners—a big red curtain opens revealing a mirror and a woman with really old hands and smooth, transparent skin begins crying gratefully, “I’m so beautiful!” They simply do not see themselves the way real people do.
Don’t get me wrong. I don’t have anything against plastic surgery. I got an eye job 15 years ago. By a surgeon named Dr. Seuss (no kidding!). I couldn’t decide to go for “Thing One” or “Thing Two”, but I trusted him and ended up loving the results. He gave me eyelids! I had never, ever had eyelids before. Now, at 59, I worry that a full facial lift will not fool anyone. Like I mentioned, after a certain point, you look old anyway. Normal old or scary old. “Thing One or Thing Two” still equals Old.
I understand that all women want to look attractive. (Of course we do!) That’s why even the elderly wear lipstick. That’s the real outcome L.A. women are hoping for by incorporating the knife into their regimen—looking attractive. However, I contend that we cannot be the best judges of what is attractive at 60+. The newly implanted, heavy-on-the-silicone-cheeks-woman, casting a long shadow down her taut face, may see herself as a young, chiseled work of art … but, trust me, her friends are trying desperately to find a safe, neutral comment. “Wow! Look at you! What a change!” translates into what they’re really thinking:
“Oh my, oh my, you changed your lips,
You moved your nips,
You sucked your hips.
Your cheeks are tall,
Your tummy’s small.
Tell me, was it worth it all?
Skin is tight, eyes won’t close,
What happened to your Roman nose?
You’ve tried each procedure.
Now you just look like a creature.”
Sorry, Dr. Seuss (both of you).
And sorry, sweet desperate Boomers.
Time moves on … no matter how much skin is removed.