With time comes experience and with experience comes wisdom. Now in my late sixties, I’m grateful to reflect on the many truths I’ve learned about what makes someone beautiful. Here are five things I wish I’d known about beauty in my youth that I hope will resonate with you, regardless of your age.
1. You recognize your own beauty more and more as you grow into your own skin.
Looking back now, I can see from my modeling photos how beautiful I was in my youth. But, I wish I had known it then! It’s so easy to compare ourselves to others, but our trademarks are rarely found in others. With time we learn to place more value on these unique features no one else has.
I make sure to tell my own daughter how beautiful she is whenever I get the chance, and I make sure to tell all my grown up friends just how beautiful they are as well. We all deserve to recognize that which makes us special. There’s no product that can deliver the equivalent of beauty earned through self acceptance.
2. Looking after yourself is worth the trouble.
Did I look after myself well in my youth? Truthfully, no, not really. I’ve become better and better at the good habits that keep you healthy, happy and vibrant. Eating nourishing food, keeping good company, walking in nature, all that good stuff. Investing time into treating ourselves well reminds us that we are worthy of fulfillment.
3. Beauty doesn’t need to be complicated.
In your youth it is harder to discriminate wisdom amongst all the advertising, magazine articles, products on the shelf, and all the rest of it. I don’t know how many different creams for this and lotions for that I must have tried on my skin at one time or another.
It was such a blessing for me to work with Aida Grey at her Beverly Hills salon in my 30s, and to start learning from a true master about the simplicity of good skin care.
4. Other people see that you’re beautiful even when you don’t.
You may spend half your time outside the house wondering whether other people think you look OK: whether your hair has flicked over to one side, or whether you made up your eyes just so this morning. But really no-one else is paying attention to that because they are so busy with worrying about those things for themselves.
What your friends, family, co-workers, and the lady in the deli do notice is not when you ARE having a great hair day, or have chosen a pretty lipstick color , but that you gave them a great smile or a warm compliment. Because…
5. Beauty is the whole package .
I’m a real evangelist for great skin care, and I can hardly stop myself talking about radiant skin from dawn till dusk, but of course beauty is so much broader and so much deeper than just that. Sitting here and writing this I feel moved to rest my mind briefly on so many individual friends and family members, and women who inspire me out in public life, and the qualities that make each of them beautiful. Warmth, joy, humor, cheekiness, knowing just what to say at the right moment, being there just when you need them. The whole package.