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Au Natural

One of the most fascinating elements of this new age we find ourselves in is a return to internal truth, one dedicated to wellness, and embracing who we are as women.

Photo by Alexander Krivitskiy

One of the most fascinating elements of this new age we find ourselves in is a return to internal truth. That truth is one dedicated to wellness, and embracing who we are as women rather than forever trying to become something – someone – else. In this time, we seem to have finally come to understand that we age. And it’s OK.

In the UK, the British Association of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons says there was a “drop of nearly 40 percent in the number of (cosmetic) procedures” performed in 2016. In the US, which is still one of the biggest markets for cosmetic, or plastic, surgery, the majority of Americans remain largely unsold on having “work done,” including even collagen or Botox® injections. In fact, according to Pew Research, only 4 percent of Americans admit to having had elective cosmetic procedures, and only 2 percent admit to having injections.

The business of cosmetic surgery is still booming, of course, but it seems that more and more women are opting for a more natural look, one that shows confidence and wisdom. After all, there is really nothing we can do about the fact that we get older. It starts to happen from the moment we’re born, and while a little tuck or squeeze can sometimes work wonders, much of the time, it’s fairly noticeable that someone has changed their appearance. And often, it’s not a favorable notice. Think ballooning lips.

The adage used to be that men become distinguished as they age, but women – well, they just get old. Tell that to Julia Roberts, Julianne Moore, Jodie Foster, Kate Winslet, Salma Hayek, Hallie Berry, Diane Keaton, and Meryl Streep; Brad Pitt and Daniel Craig. All of these celebs have said they have no interest in plastic surgery. Recently, Melissa Gilbert, who started as a child actor, admitted that she’s done with trying to age in reverse: “I went down the road that everyone else does – nose job, boob job, fillers and Botox, but no more. I had my breast implants removed and I’m no longer doing fillers or Botox because I’m a 53-year-old woman and I’m trying to embrace this process of aging.”

Talk about feeling empowered to simply be who you are, and to feel free about what the future will bring.

In the beauty industry, where we have long been concerned with cosmetic beauty, we’re also embracing the idea of au natural. Fashion designers like Dior, Carolina Herrera, and Balmain have put avant-garde away and instead are showcasing beautiful but natural. Gentle colors, nude lips. For hair, natural textures and waves, and subtle colors recently strutted the runways. These au natural looks will likely be around through fall and beyond. Why? It’s enhancing who you are now without trying to become who you used to be.

There are natural self-tanners, and beachy wave scrunches, along with extracts and oils to add temporary and complete stains to long legs and lips alike. This shows that the trend in natural beauty isn’t just for what’s outside, but what manufacturers are putting inside. Ingredients that aren’t harmful to people or the environment, made ever more powerful and efficacious by technology. For years, beauty products have touted that they’re paraben and chemical-preservative free. Now, according to In Cosmetics, people are flocking to natural, organic and fresh products because of their health. They’re no longer in search of a facelift in a jar but rather a feel-good product that helps support nature as well as their natural selves. Many of these modern-choice ingredients are no longer tested on animals, and the ever popular natural extracts and essential oils are often harvested from renewable resources. All of this helps solidify an embrace of overall wellness and general health. In the minds of many, this author included, healthy equates to happy and happy can and perhaps should be written all over your face.

So be beautiful. Be yourself. Always. It’s better than the plastic alternative!

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