Wednesday, 1 June 2011

Growing Pains

No, I am not ginger. I am GREY. My hairdresser once described the back of my head as looking like a badger's arse. Which was nice. I'm not grey all over, not yet, and with help from my hairdresser I have been keeping it at bay. I chose to go blonde - so that the regrowth isn't so noticeable. Recently I've realised that blonde doesn't really suit me and so I have now chosen to embrace my natural red undertones with some subtle copper low lights. I feel better for it. I no longer look like a corpse.
So why do I cover the grey? Cos I don't want to look old.
I read a book this weekend called To Hell In High Heels by Helena Frith-Powell, which covers her journey through all the anti-aging procedures you can imagine. She didn't try all of them but thoroughly researched those she didn't. Fairly close to the beginning of the book she describes a treatment on offer at the La Prairie clinic in Switzerland whereby clients can opt to have injections of a youth enhancing concoction that is harvested from the livers of unborn lambs. Apparently there is a whole sheep farm dedicated to this purpose. When the female sheep is in the late stages of pregnancy she is taken to an abattoir and killed. The lamb foetus is taken to the clinic where cells from its liver are taken to use in the injections. People who've had these injections claim to feel revitalised and full of energy. I imagine that somewhere there is a mad scientist working with this research and wondering whether the results could be improved upon by using a human foetus.
Anyhow, my desire not to look old will never extend this far; it will never extend beyond hair dye and face cream. I am far too squeamish to contemplate surgery or needles, even if I had the money. Recently I was involved in an incident where some young people saw fit to draw attention to my age [trust me, they paid the price for their silliness], and I was a little hurt. With hindsight they weren't exactly the most attractive young people I've ever seen. One of the young women was blessed with an awful lot of puppy fat, topped off with a pair squinty current bun eyes. Did I ridicule her for this? No I didn't. Exchanging personal insults never aids a discussion. My point is that youth doesn't necessarily equate with beauty. Where does this idea come from? I wasn't jaw droppingly gorgeous when I was younger, so I doubt I'm ever going to be - even if I decide to have my jowls sewn up behind my ears, being jaw droppingly gorgeous is an experience that I'm never going to have.
The conclusion the book came to was that it's impossible to reclaim your youth, the best that you can do for yourself is to eat a healthy diet and take a moderate amount of exercise; limit alcohol to the odd glass of red wine and STOP smoking. And always wear sunscreen. And get plenty of sleep... basically work with what you've got... and if you've got glorious red locks stop trying to be a brassy blonde... there is nothing less attractive than fighting your own natural colouring. And when you see 50 looming over the horizon, when your jowls are building a long term relationship with your neck, comfort yourself with the knowledge that not all young people are visions of loveliness either.

52 comments:

  1. You are gorgeous, exactly the way you are!

    As far as hair color goes, I personally don't care what color mine turns as long as it stays put!

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  2. Mr XL: True! I have been told that my hair will eventually be an elegant white and not a steely grey. So one day I will be naturally elegant!
    Sx

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  3. I think I'm more at home with my looks now than I've ever been! I rely on a nice smile to get me through and it seems to work.

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  4. Fairyhedgehog: You are right about the smile... which is why I'm going to have regular check ups with the dental hygienist.
    Sx

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  5. Embracing your natural tones is best, Scarlet. Myself? I've only dyed my hair once and hated how it felt... changed it to straw. Having curly hair means it's rather coarse, so the dye just made that worse, and dried it out. I actually have a fair bit of grey but because I am a dark blonde, it just looks like the front is a bit lighter. I'm fine with it, however it looks.

    Now all you need to do to be a proper ginger puss is to quit smoking! That will help with the saggy skin and wrinkles too, you know... smoking damages your skin and causes loss of elasticity. And you do want to have bounce-back-ability, don't you!? ;-)

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  6. Ponita: Re: smoking... mutter, mutter... I know you're right... but everyone deserves one bad habit... don't they...????? Pretty please... meanwhile I will wear a face bra to bed...
    Sx

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  7. "looking like a badger's arse" is pretty damn rude! Yesterday I visited my figaro (figarette?) and when she had finished the cruel deed I saw the back of my head in the mirror: Looked a bit as if a mouse would have gnawed away on my mane. That's what I saied, she gave no comment.
    She mentioned jokingly that a firm invented and sells a kind of spray-on-hair, I have to search for this. And I was told that my natural hair colour would stay with me very long and that I'd possibly be asked whether I dye.
    Face bra? A push up?

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  8. Mr Mags: Yes, a face bra... I first saw one on Ally McBeal, like this.
    But hair always feels better after a good cut... not sure how it feels after a mouse has gnawed it though?
    SX

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  9. GAH - reminded me of Davinia Douglass ...
    I am sorry, being an insensitive bloke my hair feels the same after being cut, I can find no difference. I should start to wear a birettum or a mortarboard or something ...

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  10. I prefer the bra-less look!

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  11. In my experience, the derision of young people tends to come from the insecurity of knowing that you still look better than them, despite your advanced years. Im sure you are quite fabulous Miss S!

    Ruf is forever telling me that my body is the envy of girls a third my age - and, naturally, I try hard to stay in shape and maintain the physique that I was lucky enough to be given. Oil of Olay and Boots Protect and Perfect combined with your recommendations of sunscreen, non-smoking and minimal drinking help keep some of the worse lines at bay. If only there were more opportunities for sleep, I would be eternally grateful.

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  12. Jaw Droppingly Gorgeous is in the eye of the beholder.

    So, if the beholder doesn't think one is JDG, just gouge out their eyes and insert some that work!
    Squished eye-goob also makes one's nails and cuticles gleam and sparkle, so one can't lose!

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  13. "People who've had these injections claim to feel revitalised and full of energy." More than can be said for the dead sheep unfortunately.

    Youth absolutely does not equal beauty. Personality, wit and sexiness definitely increase with age. There's no substitute for experience.

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  14. Perhaps it would be better to pick a bad habit that won't kill you, Scarlet...

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  15. I'm just growing old gracefully. Grey hairs and all. Went through the blonde ambitious stage for years but tired of the extra care involved.
    "Father I have a confession" I have not cut my hair for over 4 years now.
    It's long and sophisticatedly
    salt and peppery.

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  16. Mr Mags: Davinia had a miracle mask.
    Just don't try wearing one of these.

    Mr XL: You prefer a natural bounce?!

    Ms Cakes: Sometimes I scrub up quite well! And I am happy with my figure... although I will never like my knees... but what can I do about them? They bend, so I will consider myself grateful, but I will never have pretty knees...

    Mr Devine: Thank you! This sounds like superb advice.
    Have you noticed that wearing sunglasses makes everybody instantly looked tanned and lovely. I will instruct people to wear sunglasses before they look at me.

    Nick: Yep, the sheep thing is quite disgusting. And we're supposed to live in a civilised society. This practice is quite barbaric.
    I'm working on elegant and sophisticated... it may take awhile.

    Ponita: Something else to work on... I've given up before, I can do it again...

    Princesss: I'm trying to be graceful... but I am naturally clutsy.

    Sxx

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  17. I totally agree with your last paragraph and try my best to keep to it.
    Peace of mind is a great beautifyer and to be happy in one's skin whilst avoiding smugness.
    Come to think of it- when you reach my age, with daily realisataions of the passage of time smugness is a million miles away.
    I think your blog persona is warm, friendly and humourous - with or without the ginger.

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  18. Pat: Ahhh... thank you, Pat! I do my best! I must be away to my wii-fit balance board in a bit and practice what I preach exercise wise.

    Sx

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  19. What am I to do with all those pics I've saved of MM with the intention of using them for future posts about Miss Scarlet?

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  20. @MAGO: I did a post about spray-on hair over at The Hair Hall of Fame.

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  21. Elegant and sophisticated? Not many people can carry that off successfully. Not me for one. Are you thinking Audrey Hepburn in Breakfast at Tiffany's?

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  22. MJ: I am feeling hideously guilty now. And I'm not 1005 happy with this avatar... and I am still quite fair... what to do???
    Maybe I should get some spray on hair?

    Nick: Even if you look at me through squinty eyes and a vaseline smeared lens, I'm always going to be more Barbara Windsor than Audrey Hepburn!

    Sx

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  23. No I AM NOT 1005... I meant 100%.
    SX

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  24. Just for Mistress MJ and Mr XL..
    Sx

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  25. Classic!



    PS: I stand ready to assist with Photoshop/graphics support!

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  26. I would like more of a close up, if you could assist, Mr XL, I would be most grateful.
    SX

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  27. Excellent, Miss Scarlet!

    Since there are thousands of MM pics, why not change your avatar according to your mood yet you can still be the same person.

    I still recall the shock I had when XL temporarily changed his avatar.

    I had to lie down in a darkened room until he changed it back.

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  28. But you ARE jaw-droppingly gorgeous my dear. Except when you are smoking. That makes anyone look ugly.

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  29. MJ: Was that when Mr XL when through a hippy phase? I couldn't get used to that one either!
    Avatar changes can be quite disconcerting.

    Dave: Did you happen upon me when I put the smoking Marilyn pic up! I thought that would be controversial - I was imagining No smoking signs whenever I tried to enter a comment box.
    I was cute when I was young - bordering on pretty with good lighting... now I'm a little bit frayed around the edges!

    Sx

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  30. A little frayed around the edges? What, is the distressed look no longer fashionable?

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  31. Nick: I will do everything in my power to keep shabby chic in fashion!
    Sx

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  32. Please to help.

    Send the best version of the pix via e-mail, along with detailed description of what you want. Any additional info about the pix would also be helpful.

    The avatar is from my "absenthe phase." I now have a lead on finding an absenthe bar in Berlin!

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  33. 50 isn't old anyway.

    I work on LL Cool J's principle of just being the best you can for the age you are.

    Bad English, but you take my point?

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  34. Ahhhh!!!! Mr XL has gone all hippy dippy again!!

    Mr Joey: I know exactly what you mean! But I hasten to add I still have a few years before I hit 50. It's there though. Looming on the horizon. The big fat 5 0.

    Sx

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  35. You are neither big nor fat. Nor will you be when you reach 50. Which is a very young age anyway.

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  36. Sorry, Dave!! I am having avatar enhancements - less costly than a facelift!
    SX

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  37. If you'd like any other bits of you lifting, just give me a word. I'd be happy to lend a hand.

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  38. Now that the avatar is sorted out, go platinum!

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  39. Why is everyone so obsessed with reclaiming their youth? Personally I'm glad my youth is well behind me. All that awkwardness, inexperience and thoughtlessness. Oh hang on, I've still got all that....

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  40. Dave: I need a knee lift!

    Mr XL: Tut, tut! I will stick with my copper lowlights - I know the perils of too much bleach.

    Mythical Modo: Erm... TROUT POUT!!! Is it reversible? If not, then you look lovely.

    Nick: Yes - and that's the problem, we can no longer blame our idiot moments on being young!

    Sx

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  41. I'll be turning 41 in a month and while I don't really feel old per se I do find myself having to be more careful with my health as I'm not nearly as resilient as I used to be. However, I do like the wisdom that comes with age : )

    Also, glad you enjoyed your visit to my blog.

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  42. Jeez I've just clicked over here for the first time and found dental problems, abuse from yoof, ageing, dead and departed members....
    Scarls, I'm headed south of the border if this carries on; to mash you up some chocolate cake with gin if necessary.

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  43. Oh! way too much reading for my commute-busted-brain. Glad you're writing and inspiring Ms S. Will come back when I've got my brian and toilette sorted. W x

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  44. "Square or tapered at the back? if you have it tapered, I can remove most of the grey bits"

    I've never forgotton those hurtful words once said to me by a Sid James lookalike wearing lipstick and a pair of creole earrings. I told her it's not grey it's sun kissed!

    Now, before I go for a haircut, I give myself a little touch up with a do-it-yourself hair dye kit, mixing equal amounts of Derma v10 dark brown with developer in a little plastic plant pot drip tray stirred with a cotton bud and applied to the temples and nape using a mascara wand. It's not a perfect match but you can't have everything.

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  45. Apologies I seem to have abandoned this blog post without replying... or saying a bright cheery: Hello and Welcome! to Vincent.
    Have I been to your blog Vincent? If not I will make amends.

    Mitzi: Sadly, I don't think a mascara wand will cover my badger's arse! I need a massive paintbrush. I need rubber gloves. I need industrial hair dye... the strong stuff from the salon. I need a stack of magazines to read for the hours I need for it to take effect.

    Sx

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  46. Vincent! Yes! Apologies for my memory lapse! This is why I am in mid-crisis! I always used to remember where I'd been... but now... well... I'm not the Blogger I used to be.

    Sx

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  47. Wisewoman: Hello and Welcome!
    I sometimes wish Blogger would eat some of mine...
    Sx

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