Tonight while I was washing my face with my favorite, Take The Day Off Clinique, I had a flashblack to my grandmother which got me thinking about aging. I am in my mid 40's and honestly I don't have any significant signs of aging. I don't look 20 so nothing that crazy. I don't have any deep lines only a small brow line that some days you can't see at all. My mother, sister and grandmother are all the same so you think its genetic right? Is it though, really do I have special genes that stopped me from getting significant sun damage? Do our genes block free radicals it that is the case I can save myself a few bucks on my Flavo C. Then I go back to the parisian women who passes her gaurded skincare routine and secrets to her daughter who than passes it to her daughter.
So back to my flashback I remember watching my grandmother go through her night time routine first a cleanser, like the one I use. She would massage it into her face, neck and chest in circles for probably almost 5 minutes. Then she would use a wash cloth with warm water and again in circles lightly rinse her cleanser off. Then she would slather moisturizers and oils on her face, neck and chest in the end she looked very shiny. Here I am slathering on my cleanser in circles for 5 minutes and in the end I look shiny so I learned this routine when I was 4 or 5. My mother added more to my routine.
My mothers big thing, skincare was more important than makeup. Makeup can't give you healthy skin, it can't hide all of your flaws. Typically makeup magnifies any flaws especially as the day goes on. She would do exfoliating and masks weekly. I learned the importance of removing dead skin which put me on a path of useing retinol products early. By 28 I was using a retinol cream and weekly gylcolic acid treatments. She didn't just teach me about the skincare routine but also how eating the right foods can actually give you better skin and avoid aging. By the time I was 25 I know I needed to not fluctuate my weight too much or it would cause skin sagging/crepe.
Sun damage was limited not because I was afraid of aging but because I am very pale there is no way I could tan even if I wanted to. I burn but it doesn't turn into a tan its just red or white and I never had the ability to sit still anyway so it just wasn't worth it. I wear sunscreen everyday as I have since I was a teen but not to avoid aging, which seriously that tan is not worth it, but the pain and peeling of sunburn.
Today I have added my own secrets to my routine from food to my crazy essential oil collection. Serious I have one of those 3 tier cookie trees in my bathroom filled with all of my oils and butters. For the record I had always had issues with acne, even that nasty cystic painful massive zits and now nothing. I was always afraid of oils but now that I use oils I never break out. I have my special smoothies full of antioxidants, anti inflammatories and fatty acids and other little tricks. My daughter sees what I do just like I did and someday she will add her own secrets and pass those down to her daughter.
So is it genetic, I don't know I guess there is something to it but really it is about taking care of your skin. I'm sitting here with my shiny face just like my grandmother and probably like her grandmother and so on. I think it is more of a nurture vs nature. I probably wouldn't have the skin I have today if I hadn't watched my grandmother as a little girl. This is a reminder to all of the mothers out there, as a mother of a teenager promise you that even when you think they aren't listening to you they are. They are learning by watching you it may take until they are 28 to show you what they learned but they are watching every move you make.