Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Age Appropriate––Our Tricks Of The Trade

Barbara: On Monday, we bemoaned our aging bodies, while still maintaining our deep-rooted respect for same and our absolute certainty that life does indeed get better.

So today I thought it would be appropriate to give props to those things each of us do and/or have done that we actually think paid off in the long run. Think of it as words of wisdom to our youngers and well-deserved pats on the back for each other.

I’ll go first. Cream. It’s a pain, it’s slippery, it’s time-consuming, it can be expensive (but doesn’t need to be). It works, no question. I’ve been creaming myself up for going on 30 of my 47 years. Body, hands, feet, face. What can I say? What I already said: it works. Wrinkles run in my family, on both sides. Gloriously youthful faces, but wrinkles. I believe I have staved them off as well as can be expected given gravity and climate.

I used to have these little hard calcified bumps on my upper arms and legs. Cream after my shower softened them and finally made them disappear. My skin is smooth, I tell you, smoooooth. I had cracked dry skin on the soles of my feet. Creaming day and night got rid of that. And here I actually have to name names because I have tried a zillion other hand and foot creams and the one I keep coming back to is Glysomed. Nary a cracked fissure in sight.

I also use natural “castor oil” for everything from keeping my spider veins at bay to easing a bruise in record time to softening my (normal everyday) moles. Desiten (yes, the diaper rash cream) is great for pimples or rashes (it’s all the zinc). And a smidgen of 15% tea tree oil on a q-tip then dabbed on a zit will dry that thing up in a few hours.

And then there’s exercise. Absolutely works. I am not addicted. I am not a machine. I don’t have Deb’s discipline. But still even once a week makes a huge difference.

Walking. Daily if I can. A dog is a great companion, but not required. With these, my body has been in more consistent shape than I would’ve guessed possible (not what it used to be, of course, but given the givens).

Yoga, also once a week. Oh, yogahhhhh. This is where I learned to breathe and relax. Without yoga, my mood is much trickier to manage and the bright side is not quite as bright. With it, I have time to myself.

Which brings me to: time to myself. This is my absolute. Without some precious quiet time in my day or week, I am worthless. With it, I get way more done with way less anxiety, stress, or guilt (which is ironic because guilt used to prevent me from taking time for myself!). Just do it.

What are your tricks?

Deb: My tricks are all done with mirrors! In fact, Barbara has never really seen what the actual Deb looks like...

No seriously. I am ALL ABOUT THE CREAMS TOO! For face alone I have:
Special cream wash
All over lifter and smoother
Eye serum
Eye cream
Liquid Gold all over face
Neck lifter
Night and Day cream
Night emulsion
Warm water!

Body also gets the treatment, emphasizing hands and elbows just before bed.
I get regular mani-pedi’s, which solve that cracked skin problem.
I just found out about a cream that reduces and fades liver spots, but I will have to get back to you on the name.

Barb, I love your tips and will use them! Castor oil, huh? Not just for breakfast anymore!!!

And I meditate, but not as much as I should. Been doing T.M. since 1973! And yes, I love love love to exercise. I work out 6 days a week. Cardio, weights resistance, Zumba and I am starting lyrical jazz in January. I walk the dogs, ride my bike, and I skate almost every day in the winter. My husband and I met a couple of young doctors at a wedding a month ago. We asked, “What is the secret to longevity in your opinion?” They said, “Exercise, first, second, and last”. So that made me feel sooooooooooooooo much better about red wine with dinner every night!


  1. I've had to simplify my beauty routine for practical reasons, but I cannot say enough about how exercise has benefited me inside and out.

  2. *blinks*

    *eyes bar of Ivory soap and 89cent bottle of shampoo in shower and the toothbrush and toothpaste on the side of the sink -- That's my beauty routine.*

    *guesses Deb and Barbara will disapprove*

    I do use handcream on my hands and elbows in the wintertime, though, because otherwise the skin cracks and bleeds in the coldest months if I don't. Icy cold and my hands don't get along.

    I do miss hitting the mats. I grieve the loss of martial arts in my life. I have found nothing else that is as satisfying. I was far healthier body, mind, and soul when I was hitting the mats 3 times a week. *sigh* I do love swimming, but that's only summertime here. Exercise in winter? *shrugs* Haven't figured that one out now that I'm not wearing a gi/dobak 5 or 6 hours a week. :(

    *blinks at Deb again*
    No offense, dear Deb, but your dresser must look like one of those glass counters in the fancy department stores at the mall!

  3. For me, it's really important to keep moving, mostly walking everywhere and anywhere I can. And, walking is not just about the physical benefits. It's spiritual, emotional, thoughtful. Very beneficial on many levels.

  4. Rigel, martial arts sounds so fulfilling. In good time you'll do it again. Until then, walking is amazing, it really is. Even in winter. I swear it keeps me going.

    Physical activity seems to be the consensus so far...

  5. Moving throughout the day. I have been blessed with familial good skin-a little dry but not many age spots yet or wrinkles. Hands do look older however. I use minimal organic products Max Alchemy for me for almost everything.

  6. My beauty tips: warm heart, big smile.
    Without those, none of the rest make much difference.
    I like Joni Mitchell's lyric: Happiness is the best facelift.
    I use castor oil too, Barb, around my eyes before I go to bed. Don't know if it's making any difference, but I've read it prevents wrinkles. I'm starting to think nothing does, though.
    Wish I had your discipline, Deb, to do the skin routine and all that exercise. You must absolutely glow.

  7. Barbara -

    It is! My deepest martial arts love is aikido. I'm terrible at it - the worst student in the room - but I don't care! I just love, love, love it! I used to drive a little over an hour to a dojo down in the city twice a week, but that's not an option, now. However, whenever I imagine where I'll land for my Life 2.0 after kiddo graduates, it's a given that there'll be an aikido dojo nearby! LOL

    I've also done Tae Kwon Do, and I was actually pretty decent at that discipline. I advanced several rankings and got to where I assisted with teaching the little kids. Plus, Tae Kwon Do did wonders for my coordination (I am a total klutz!) But, it's just not as fun to me as aikido. Plus, aikido (and having moved around a lot earlier in life, I've been a part of several different dojos) tends to attract my type of people. It's a funky, quirky population that I tend to fit in with (except I don't drink, and the sake usually flows LOL). There's an old joke about you know you're an aikidoka when you see bruises on your wrists and smile. The corollary to that is that you can name which person gave you each bruise and smile because you love those people.

    Speaking of aikido and being a klutz, I'm at home right now instead of work. I'll try to go back in this afternoon. I got to work this morning and was walking across the parking lot to the building where my office is. It's been raining, and there are a lot of wet leaves on the ground. Stupid me slipped in the parking lot and came crashing down spilling 2 armfuls of books, purse, crochet project bag, and soda cup. There I lay in a big, cold, wet mud puddle hurting and trying to decide if it was all soft tissue injury (it is) or if I'd broken anything. Some very sweet men (good Southern gentlemen) came running over to help which was very embarrassing for me but for which I am also very grateful because they were absolute dears. My darling boss (I do so love her - hands down the best boss I have EVER had) came out and even offered to drive me home (but, I got myself home - had to prove to myself I could do it because I've got to pick up kiddo from school at 3:00) and told me she'd cover for me and to just take the rest of the day off if I need to. I just wanted to stop being stared at and get home and peel off the wet, cold clothes and climb into a hot shower (good heavens, the BLOOD down my legs when I took my pants off!). My right ankle looks like an eggplant, my left knee has decided that bleeding is its new hobby, and my left hip hates me and wants to belong to someone else. BUT, speaking of the martial arts, the aikido training of years past is well ingrained because I took the fall correctly (there's just no way an unplanned breakfall onto asphalt isn't gonna do something bloody) and didn't hit my head (neck up! neck up!) or break my wrists (fall flat! disperse impact!) (two things you're taught about how to fall from day one in aikido). :P LOL My body and my dignity are both hurt, but they'll both heal.

    This is aikido (one of my most favorite things ever in the whole world EVER):

    (tachiwaza to suwariwaza to hamni handachiwaza)

  8. Madge, I definitely prefer organic products now (or at least sulfate-free, etc).

    Katrinka, I do the castor oil EVERYWHERE, including around the eyes. Apparently it's the most effective moisture-trapper. And all-natural. Hence, the great rep.

    Rigel, ow ow OW! Hope you recover well. Wishing you akido dreams!

  9. Lisa yay for exercise and as far as simplifying your routine, I would be too had I not met Marta and her magical creams. Would Ponds work as well? Probably. I'll never know. Rigel Owwies you poor thing. Please feel better my darling girl. But you're right, you didn't break anything so that's good. Yeah Joanne, walking is as much for the head isn't it? Madgew, ah for the genes. I have the saggy face skin gene but I actually don't have the wrinkle gene so I hear ya! Katrinka, true true words. And I glow a little, glow worm though, not glow globe. If I didn't do it, my face would crack and fall off. Really dry skin. My husband on the other hand, soap water, skin like silk. The boy too.

  10. Alas, I seem to have the opposite problem. At the ripe old age of 21 the rest of my body has decided to grow up and has left my skin behind. Every morning I look in the mirror and am still confronted with the, for lack of a better term, "pizza-face" I had in high school. Tried just about every over-the-counter treatment and nothing's worked. Dad just got on better insurance so I'm hoping I can get to a dermatologist so my skin will wake up and become mature and sophisticated like the rest of me...okay maybe I still wear jeans and a hoodie to work, but at least I'd like to not look like a high school kid...

    And exercise is the best thing ever! I'm trying to lose weight to get into the military and it's been one of the best experiences of my life. I went from being tired all the time, and getting sick really easily to having so much more energy and having a sounder mind and body! I love to go for walks when I can't sleep, helps clear my head and sort out all the junk that's rattling around in there.

  11. With me I have a couple of things that I do every morning and everyday. Simple things like moisturize my face because if not I tend to get my wounderful brake out's and we all know how great they are. Now since my hair has gotten longer I have had to use sprays and creams for my hair so it does not look so bad when I go to work. I don't want to go to work and have frizzy hair. Another thing that I have had to do at night, is make sure I use my lotion's because if not I wake up feeling like my skin is so dry and I hate that feeling. I have come to relize that lotion is my best friend in the winter time.

    I also do just other simple things like make sure I stay in shape. I make sure I do my yoga of a morning and night sometimes,and meditate everyday. I feel so great after and it makes me not worry about a thing. Love it. I make sure I eat right as well and keep the stress down to a low because really that can make the body so much worse.

  12. Barb how do you manage to spread castor oil everywhere? The stuff I have is terribly thick! And then do you go to bed encased in a full-length nightgown, or what?
    Seriously. I'm being serious. Yes I am!

  13. Sleep. A good 8 hours of zzzzz's is crucial. And laughter. And being vegan. And exercising. I too have been a creamer all my life. Head to toe. My love of the sunshine is catching up with me - but I value the natural vitamin D hit. So more cream it is!

  14. Sleep! I forgot to mention sleep. That is key for me too.

    Katrinka, yeah, the castor oil is very thick, but I slather it on my legs for the spider/varicose veins after my shower. I put on my jeans and I never seem to have a problem. I've been doing this for years and I swear have never had an oily pants issue. And the veins seem to be doing great, so...

  15. My ideal sleep is 8 hours. Thrilled for nine, have done ten under duress, and will take seven but only one night. Two in a row-zombie.LOVE MY SLEEP. Wish I only needed three but.........zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

  16. I am lucky If I get 4 to 5 hours of sleep a night. After I come home from work I am so up and alive that it is hard for me to go to sleep. Even when I try to go to sleep,I usually toss and turn all night. Yeah sleep really isn't my thing. I wish it was thought. Thank God For Coffee.

  17. Coffee is definitely God's greatest gift to mankind. I'll even be a few minutes late to class for the sake of having my morning thermos of coffee to take with me.

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  19. Thats why I say Thank God For Coffee.

  20. Ah, ladies, I hate to break it to you, but giving up coffee has also been one of my saving graces. I know, I know, don't wanna hear it, but I sleep better, stress less, and have much better digestion. Just sayin...

  21. I can top that one ladies. Never had a cup of coffee in my life. Hate it. I know it's hard to believe but I just cannot stand the taste of anything coffee. I'm a dyed in the wool tea granny I'm afraid.

  22. Okay, so I can take this one: Liquid Gold is by Anna Lotan, not actually gold but natural herbs. But feels and looks like gold and just GORGEOUS on the skin.

  23. sounds good. Please send me some.

    stick cake in the envelope while you're at it.


    (ok, ok, i'll go find some and order it. skip the cake).

    (wait, no that's wrong. send the cake!)


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