Who’s the fairest?


“Vanity working on a weak head, produces every sort of mischief” – Jane Austen

Beloved author and all around awesome English babe, Jane Austen lived from 1775 to 1817. She died waaaayyy too young at 41 from, what scholars believe, was Hodgkins Lymphoma.

Unlike “I can’t sit still” AGMA, Jane never went more than 150 miles from her home in the south west part of England. But nevertheless she had a keen understanding of human nature that shines in her works. Her characters are just like people we come in contact with everyday. I mean, we all know somebody like Mr. Darcy or Elizabeth Bennett or Lydia Bennett or Mr. Wickham.

Did I mention Pride and Prejudice ROCKS!

Emma was updated on the big screen in 1995 for a new generation by the movie Clueless.

And who can forget the 2016 movie classic, Pride and Prejudice and Zombies?

Jane understood people, and their flaws and their strengths, and how it all impacts them in their relationships . Because she was so spot on in her assessment of the human condition, her books transcend time, culture and geography.

Can you tell AGMA’s a fan?

And she sure as hell knew about vain people.

Just look at the massive Orange Cheeto in the WH with his hair transplants, his fake tan and his Twitter account.

Weak head? Check. Mischief? Understatement.

Baby Boomers are in their 60’s and 70’s. Our youth obsessed culture is more obsessed than ever.  Forever 21 is more than a retail store; it’s a way of life.

There is a pot load of money to be made out there from folks like us.

Google “anti-aging products” and you get like a kazillion hits. The global (‘cuz nobody, no matter where they live, wants to look old…) was 250 billion – with a “B” – in 2016, and is expected to reach nearly $331 billion – with a “B” by 2021 (according to a report by OrbisResearch.)

Holy Hyaluronic Acid!

I am not immune to the power of the dark side.

Don’t judge me.

AGMA has always been an “au natural” beauty. I kind of grimaced when I typed the word “beauty”…

I’ve never worn much make-up. A touch of eyeliner here, a bit of blush there for the last umpteen years. Of late, I’ve given the eyeliner and blush.

And AGMA has never had a skin care regiment. I wash my face and smear a moisturizer with sunscreen on afterward. The sunscreen part makes my dermatologist happy.

While my extremely oily skin was a cause for much gnashing of teeth, wearing of sackcloth and sitting in ashes when I was young, it’s served me nicely as I’ve aged. Once I stopped getting zits. In my 50’s.


But of late, AGMA has wondered if I need to start a “formal” skin care regimen. Should I wade into anti-aging money pit?

“What do you mean you don’t use retinol on your skin? You should use it everyday Aunt AGMA!” exclaimed my 46 year old niece when I visited her a few weeks ago. I should?

Maybe I should.

I did some research when I got home. Evidently there are things that I could be doing to my face that would make it “brighter, clearer and removes fine lines and wrinkles”.

Welcome to $250 billion band wagon AGMA!

The basics seem to be a mild cleanser (check), a toner, a moisturizer during the day (check) and a cream with RETINOL at night. I call them the Big 4. Plus you need to add a facial mask once a week to “pull out the impurities”.

Sounds like something that needs to happen at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave.

So companies will sell you their specially packaged skin care regimen. The cult of Mary Kay and the pink Cadillac has been doing this since 1963. My MIL has been selling and using Mary Kay for years.

Based on her skin’s appearance (somewhere between the basketball from the first NCAA championship in 1939 and my old hiking boots), AGMA will pass on that one.

There are a lot of other companies that want me to contribute my share to the $250 billion.

One has the Big 4 for $170 on Amazon. Plus eye cream for $65. And “Renewing Serum” for $94.

Does anybody actually know what renewal serum is? Sounds like something they used in an episode of the Twilight Zone.

As usual, AGMA went in a “value” direction.

I ordered a witch hazel (an oldie but a goodie) hydrating toner for $13, a night cream with RETINOL (my niece would be so proud!) for $24.00 and bentonite clay for a facial mask for $9.00. I already had the other stuff.

Excitement filled Casa AGMA when my Amazon package appeared two days later (Prime of course.) Next stop…clearer, brighter and less wrinkled/fine lined skin!

So it’s been 2 weeks now. And while AGMA’s skin is softer to the touch I can’t say I look much different. Not clear, not brighter and definitely not less wrinkled/fine lined.


Maybe I need to adjust my expectations?

Maybe AGMA should keep on keeping on because what I’m doing now is healthier for my skin, and not worry about that other stuff?

Maybe I should embrace my aging skin and celebrate the wisdom behind the wrinkles?

Maybe I should rejoice at the smile lines that reflect past laughter and joy?


Botox anybody?

“Vanity is the quicksand of reason.” – George Sand


20 thoughts on “Who’s the fairest?

  1. I’m too lazy for a beauty regimen. A quick wash with soap, followed by a light moisturizer, and I’m done. I do wonder, however, who actually has money for all those high priced products? Certainly, none of my acquaintances who rely on Social Security have that kind of cash – they’re too busy trying to meet medical expenses, rent, and food costs. I suppose that the 10% can probably support the beauty industry, even as they age, as they have always done.

    Liked by 2 people

    • I’m lazy too, but I thought I’d give it a whirl. Every night, when I go to bed, I make a loud sighing sound when I realize that I need to put the goo on! And honestly, I’m not one of the 10% – I buy pretty inexpensive stuff compared to some of the stuff out there. But you’re right, if you rely on exclusively on SS, even the inexpensive stuff is too much. Priorities you know…?

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I believe the reason we need glasses for close up reading as we get older is so we can’t see the lines and wrinkles. And don’t ever get those magnifying mirrors for the bathroom!

    That said, I do use an “anti-aging” moisturizer on my face, even though I’ve got oily skin myself. My nose is usually shiny by 10 AM and whole face is shiny by mid-afternoon. And no, it’s not a “glow”.

    One thing I do know is not all moisturizers are the same…the ones from “name brands” are more likely to have active ingredients at levels that work. Any brand can say it contains something like retinol …even if the retinol is not active in the formula or in there enough to matter. And yes, most anti-aging ingredients need to be formulated for activity (or else they will be inactive).

    BYW, my experience would say that J&J (ex. neutrogena rapid wrinkle repair) makes the best reasonably-priced retinol products. And most anti-aging ingredients take 2-3 months to make a change in your skin’s appearance (beyond just surface moisturization). Keep on using it and I think you’ll see more of a difference over time.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I was rather preoccupied with looking good when I was younger. Now I’m more like “who gives a rats ass?” I think you could get lost down that rabbit hole and not have near as much fun as Alice did. Just wear a smile and you will be beautiful AGMA!

    Liked by 3 people

  4. I don’t even use a moisturizer. Approaching my 75th birthday, i’m still waiting for the oil to dissipate. I don’t think it’s going to happen. I did try that beauty regimen a fee years back, but was too lazy to keep it up more than a few days. I think I still have all that stuff in the cabinet! 😉

    Liked by 1 person

    • You’re like me… I try something and if I don’t like it, it goes under the sink. It’s still all there. I think I did a post about that once! You are fortunate having ‘natural’ moisturizer! Until my step-mother got into her 80’s, her skin looked 20 years younger than she actually was because she had oily skin. The Alzheimer’s did a number on her though and aged her a warp speed… 😦


  5. As for me, I shop at Forever 71 because that was my age at my last birthday. 🙂 I wear a moisturizer with SPF 15 year ’round by Olay (my daughter calls it Oil of Old Lady.) When I do wear any makeup, it’s the mineral kind from L’Oreal, which also has an SPF of about 19. It actually makes my face feel more comfortable than if I wore nothing. I’ve spent a lot of my life outdoors in the sun and that is a major factor in skin ageing, but I wouldn’t trade that for lineless skin if it meant staying inside all the time or covered up in a burqa when I did venture out. I look back at photos from my youth and marvel at my skin (and my weight, and just about everything else) but I still consider myself blessed with all the other more important things like family, and grandkids who love me and actually want to be around me, even in their teen years. I just lost my husband to cancer this past week. He’s seen me looking like a hag but still told me I was beautiful. That’s all that counts.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. “Sounds like something that needs to happen at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave.”…had me laughing (and crying). Unfortunately my skin is too sensitive for any anti-aging products so I suppose my skin will just slowly sag off my face over the next couple decades.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I’ve got salt n peppa hair right now. Probably more salt than peppa! My hair stylist is always telling me that she has clients who would LOVE to have my hair color. Really? I’ve actually been thinking of using this blue shampoos that is supposed to make the gray ‘pop’. And if I end up with blue hair, that would be cool…

      Try growing your hair out. You can always change it back!


  7. Hi AGMA. Regarding the skin toner — my dermatologist told me that once we’re over the 60 rainbow toner is not necessary. And this woman seems to know skin — at least mine. I’ve probably afforded her some great travel with my frequent check-ups on the fair Irish complexion I inherited. At any rate — once less product to fuss over. As usual, your posts are a laugh-riot.

    Liked by 1 person

    • You are so sweet! Glad you smiled! And thanks for the tip on the toner. I have an olive completion that gets pretty dark when I tan (which is infrequent these days). Over the years people have thought I was Greek or Italian (southern Italy that is!). A fair Irish completion sounds beautiful!

      Liked by 1 person

Talk to me...

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s