THEY SAY time waits for no man but as I have found in the last week that is also arguably true for the female of the species.
It’s no secret that in just under four months time I celebrate a very special birthday. I mention it often not because I am, unlike most of my friends of a similar age, having heart staggers at the very thought- but more because I figure if I keep mentioning himself might remember to start saving up for that present now.
You see, turning 30 doesn’t really bother me. Yes there are ambitions I still have for my life which I’d kind of hoped would have been achieved by now, but this isn’t really a time of regret for me- in fact it is a time of celebration.
If the glossy women’s magazines are to be believed (you know, the dear ones that cost a couple of quid), your 30s are destined to be your most enjoyable decade to date. Apparently women in their 30s develop a certain devil may care attitude to life, finding themselves more comfortable and confident in their own skins. This all sounds pretty damned appealing to me, as I have never experienced a moment of confidence in my skin in that last 29 years.
But in the last week I’ve noticed a certain ageing process setting in, which makes me wonder if the glossy magazines are either a) telling us a big bunch of fibs, or b) in league with some big Retinol/ Vitamin A/ Botox wielding conglomerate in the hope of selling us enough lotions and potions to keep the beauty industry going for the next 50 years.
First of all on close inspection of the “delicate eye area” I discovered the very distinct and un-ignorable arrival of my first fine lines. You may scoff at my vanity- fine lines are inevitable- but I was horrified because for the first time in my not so tender years I was looking in the mirror and seeing a proper, grown up adult face staring back at me.
I’m not a vain person as such, I certainly don’t have a reputation for wearing the finest make up or slathering myself in expensive creams (as previously stated my skincare regime generally involves a baby wipe and a splash of water)- but the fine lines bothered me.
They bothered me even more when I noticed that about three inches or so above them a smattering of grey hair had started to permeate my chestnut locks. The ageing process, it seems, has well and truly taken hold.
The upshot of these discoveries in that I found myself in Boots last Saturday morning looking for the solution to my problems. Handing over a significant amount of my hard earned cash to the sales assistant in return for the eeniest pot of eye cream in the world ever and a box of Clairol Essences Hair Dye which promises excellent coverage of grey, I felt strangely elated- as if I was tricking old Mother Nature. (As a rather embarrassing side note, when I was a child I was convinced I would become a world famous purveyor of perfumes and other such smelly stuff (you know the kind you make in the bathroom sink with half a bottle of baby powder and some roses from the garden?)- and my company would be called Clairol (geddit?) Imagine my disgust when I realised the name was already taken!).
With my purchases in hand (along with a free gift with purchase make up bag from No.7 which I am very delighted with) I visited my mother and it was then that I realised that creams and potions may delay the signs of the inevitable but there is more to getting older than noticing a few straggly grey hairs.
You see the Kleeneze catalogue was there and whereas I used to look through it and laugh at the ridiculous products (you know, the hair cutting bib and the ear protectors for when you are washing your hair…that kind of thing), on Saturday I found myself thinking “My, my, that looks like a handy wee number. Order me one of those bad boys please”.
A shocking £25 later and I have, winging their way to me, a special squeedgy for cleaning the inside of the windows, a brush which promises to reach all those nooks and crannies and a drain cover that doubles as a planter (I kid you not). I haven’t received my goodies yet, but I’m stupidly excited at the prospect (especially as the outside of my house is being painted and my new planter will look just fabulous in my newly decorated rear terrace (aka the back yard)!
It dawned on me then that not only was my skin ageing that wee bit- but my mind was too. I am getting, drum roll please, sensible. Now I’ve never been particularly wild but there is being responsible and being overly sensible and, dare I say it, a tad boring. I’m wondering if my Kleeneze purchases, even though I already love them more than life, have forced me into the latter category? Could it be that I am now hurtling at break-hip speed towards sensible shoes and a blue rinse?
To counter the balance I bought myself some impossibly uncomfortable but very pretty shoes, some funky costume jewellery and a funky pair of pinstripe trousers for work.
Now I’m perfectly willing to accept that my panic of the last week or so is quite possibly a late 20s crisis of sorts, so let’s hope that those magazines are right and by the time June rolls around I’ve found a degree of comfort in being who I am- dodgy drain covers and all.
Reading At The Edge - I'm delighted to return to Cavan on Tuesday, next week for At The Edge, run by Kate Ennals. Do come and join it, it's a terrific line up and there's an op...
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