Tuesday, September 25, 2018


Back in 2013, I was asked if I would like to volunteer for a non-invasive anti-ageing procedure. Some doctors were doing a short training course in this field and needed volunteers to practice on. The idea of looking years younger than my chronological age (I was 65 then) was tempting, especially as it wouldn't cost me a cent.

But I declined. I was nursing a bad cough at the time. That was the excuse I gave, but the real reason was my aversion to anything that is labeled 'anti-ageing', whether it's anti-ageing procedures, supplements or cosmetics.

The only exception for me at the time was getting my hair colored black. It had turned almost all grey within a short span of six months, brought on mainly by the stress of caring for my mom after her hip surgery in March 2011. She was also diagnosed with dementia at the same time. I was her sole caregiver.

I would have happily left my hair that shade of grey had it not been for well-meaning young people offering me their seats on trains, or helping me with my bags. It made me feel frail, old and decrepit when the reality was I probably had more energy than those nice young people.

Anyway, since then I have vowed that once I reached my 70s, that's it. No more coloring my hair black. Maybe shades of brown or blonde! Well, I am 70 now, and have kept my vow.

I mean why go against nature? Physical ageing is inevitable. Some are born blessed with great genes that slow down the ageing process. They look terrific for their age, whatever it is. We have all met such blessed individuals and secretly admire or envy them.

Less is always more when it comes to make-up for older women. Unless we know how to apply make-up to look younger and more natural, we may end up looking like a painted Chinese opera performer! Branded cosmetics are expensive. Some of them are meant to help us look natural. The irony of it! Wearing make-up is addictive too. Once we are used to having our face all made up whenever we go out, or when we have company, we will feel naked to be seen sans make-up.

Confident women don't mind being seen in public without a trace of make-up on their face. They know outer beauty is only skin-deep. It is what's inside that makes them glow - inner strength of character and a positive attitude towards life. A light touch of lipstick should suffice. The best face-lift is a genuine smile. It works. Try it.

Ali MacGraw, 79, and Robert Redford. 82, still looking great despite the silver hair and age lines 
Men are lucky - they don't need make-up to cover the wrinkles or color their hair to pass off as younger than they are. However, a word of advice - if you are balding on top, please don't drag some strands of hair to cover up the shiny pate. It's a huge turn-off for the ladies. Better to go a la Sean Connery, or go completely bald a la Bruce Willis. Some women do find bald men sexy!

Source: Daily Mail
From face lifts to breast implants, tummy tucks and more, older women are resorting to whatever means they can afford to reverse the ageing process. More men are now chasing that elixir of youth too, as evident from the rising demand for anti-ageing products for men in the market.

Alicia Douvall is the world's most surgically enhanced woman. At only 33 (in 2013), she already had 71 operations and 260 cosmetic procedures, with her first one done when she was only 17. At this rate, by the time she turns 50, her entire body would have been re-molded. She readily admits to being an enhancement addict. Surely this can't be considered effectively turning back the clock?

If going under the knife to look good makes you feel confident about yourself, or if you are doing it for functional reasons rather than aesthetic like dental implants, for instance, by all means go for it. Just don't overdo it or you might end up looking really plastic with all that plastic surgery. Make sure you get an experienced doctor. And if you are prepared to spend on costly anti-ageing products, make sure you do the research and find out if the products are genuine and effective.

With the world's population ageing at an alarming rate, the anti-ageing industry can only go from strength to strength in terms of revenue generated. Cosmetic surgeons will likely be the most sought after of all medical professionals, as there will always be men and women who refuse to grow old gracefully.

For the rest of us who prefer to let nature take its course, just remember that growing older isn't all that dreadful if we still enjoy good health, have plenty of good friends and a family that loves us and cares about us. Think of wrinkles as lines that reflect our wealth of life experiences.

Baby boomers all. With my cousin Henry (centre) and Antares after a dip in the river at Kampung Pertak. Staying forever young-at-heart and only slightly older in other places :-) (Photo taken in 2013).