Well aging

The thing about eternal youth

It'd be a stretch to say that aging is something people strive for. Quite the contrary, in fact. Aging isn't coveted by anyone. But it doesn't have to be and shouldn't be this way. Here's a first step toward acceptance: less anti-aging, more aging well. Not only is this dignified, but it can be something to enjoy.

The photo on your ID card is aging before your eyes. With each passing day the signs become more obvious, yet you, out in the real world, stay young, sexy and forever radiant. For many people, this is the dream – and one that, so far, only the eternally young Dorian Gray has had the privilege to experience in Oscar Wilde's The Picture of Dorian Gray. The fictional character hero has since made it into the real world: known as Dorian Gray Syndrome, the desire for eternal youth and physical perfection can be highly detrimental (Brosig 2000). According to the diagnosis, sufferers are “excessively concerned with their external appearance (body dysmorphic disorder).” If you are the kind of person who obsesses over how you look, it is advisable to consult a doctor. After all, staying flawless can't be the goal for a fulfilling life. It doesn't seem healthy by any stretch of the imagination.

A facelift? Not a chance. If I did that, I'd destroy all these wonderful wrinkles.

Clint Eastwood, Hollywood legend

Do you want to live to 100+ and still be agile, fit and healthy? Your best chance for reaching this goal is to live in a so-called "blue zone." Dan Buettner, head of a National Geographic expedition, set out to find the secrets of longevity and discovered them in these blue zones. 

There are 5 regions around the world that have been declared blue zones: Okinawa (Japan), Sardinia (Italy), the Nicoya Peninsula (Costa Rica), Icaria (Greece) and Loma Linda (California, USA). People in these regions live longer than elsewhere. There does not seem to be a reason for this, but rather a combination of many aspects. 

What seems to be the recipe for a long and healthy life in these blue zones? 

  • Having fun in life 
  • Staying active and working until the end of life 
  • Avoiding stress by incorporating rest periods into life 
  • Healthy eating 
  • Maintaining partnerships and social connections 
  • The environment 

When you look at these people, you feel their happiness and joie de vivre. But there are also many ways to radiate health and happiness outside the blue zones. Doing something good for yourself is much easier than you might think. This is the world of skincare, after all. It’s well worth adding the right personal care ritual to your list of positive things you can do for yourself. Because it works. For the body and soul. It's a fact, no matter your age.

A fear of aging is widespread

Sadly, when we talk about age, we feel fear rather than joy. Why is that? For many people, aging means being near the end of their life. It is associated with illnesses, physical deficits and deteriorating cognitive skills. Our distant ancestors did not know about these conditions, which we call geriatric diseases, because they simply did not live long enough to experience them. Thanks to our prosperity and medical advances, life expectancy has doubled over the past 100 years. We are getting older.

Laughter is a bodily exercise that is precious to health.


However, scientists and doctors believe that the maximum life expectancy is 120 years. Even if the search for the fountain of eternal youth continues, the aging process will likely not be able to be stopped altogether. By nature, our immune systems decline with age and our susceptibility to disease increases. 

However, researchers believe they can at least slow down the process. Their main goal is to improve our health until well into old age. Telomerase appears to play an important role in this. In 2009, the Nobel Prize was awarded to the discovery of and research into this so-called "immortality enzyme." There is also an organ in the human body that has a say in how we age. The thymus gland, a small organ between the heart and the sternum, acts as the body’s own defense system. And you guessed it: as we age, it becomes smaller, atrophies and loses its defensive capacity. 

It remains an exciting area of research, the concept of aging and immortality. But no matter how old someone is or what number they reach, one proverb about age continues to ring true today: “You’re only as old as you feel.”

Age and aging: the difference

"Age is initially just a number and is often assessed subjectively. Aging, on the other hand, is a process that can be observed and scientifically described and defined. In research on aging, the phenomenon is defined as the progressive loss of physiological integrity, leading to functional impairment and an increased probability of death [López-Otín et al. 2013]."

Max Planck Institute for Biology of Ageing

When age becomes visible 

In addition to medicine, cosmetics play a major role when it comes to aging. Although not everyone wants to look youthful through to old age, skincare becomes more and more important as the years go on. What's more, the aging process becomes an increasingly individual one. It's also something that is completely natural. 

How is it that we can actually "see" age? Dynamism and vitality are key factors here. Do you move with vigor or do you feel tired? What about fitness and conditioning? Are your reading glasses always with you? Now we're getting to appearance itself and the classic sign of advancing age: wrinkles.

As we age, our facial skin in particular loses volume and elasticity. The result: our skin becomes saggier and loses its contours. Elasticity and strength decrease significantly in women from around the age of 50, which is when menopause causes hormonal changes. In men, this loss of elasticity and firmness is less pronounced, not least because they have a different skin texture. The skin can no longer retain moisture well. It dries out quickly and loses the radiance that is typical of youthful skin. Wrinkles become even deeper. Gravity can also make itself felt as the skin starts to sag.

What is happening, exactly? The interplay between these various factors is quite complex. There are internal processes, including genetic processes (known as intrinsic skin aging). Then there are external influences (extrinsic skin aging), which are determined by our lifestyles and the resulting environmental influences, such as air pollution, UV exposure and extreme temperatures that can cause massive damage to the skin.

Skin Properties

  • Youthful skin is about firmness, elasticity and pigmentation 
  • Older skin is about dryness, roughness, flaking, itching, wrinkles, irregularities in pigmentation, sagging and thinning

Embrace the patina 

Does that all sound depressing to you? It doesn't have to. Understanding these correlations can help us to reach the most important conclusion: aging is part of life and the most natural thing in the world. What matters is the attitude we adopt toward it. Those who age with dignity do not lose their attractiveness. It just expresses itself differently. Here's another comfort for older generations: the visible signs of aging begin relatively early. They can become noticeable from as early as the age of 25. Of course, advertisements for anti-aging products featuring 20-year-old models are anything but realistic. 

And how do we deal with the visible changes? Individuality also plays a major role here, as everyone deals with it differently. For many people, wrinkles are wonderful. Why not simply tell the story of your life through them? After all, your wrinkles make you a unique individual.  

Comparing people with objects may sound strange, but it’s useful in this instance. Take leather products, for example: it could be a beloved briefcase or an elegant sofa. The fact is that you buy them because they are so beautiful. And they become even more charming as they age. This is because their patina makes them even more attractive. While they may not be flawless anymore, they are still perfect due to their newly acquired uniqueness. 

Other people, on the other hand, appreciate flawlessness – and the market is there to meet these needs. While you cannot eliminate wrinkles with cosmetics, medical treatments and applications promise exactly that. Beauty surgery, for example, can keep you looking perfect through to old age. Anyone who has opted for botox and the like should seek out good advice first and only go to experienced professionals. Keep in mind that many interventions are not completely harmless and not all offers and promises are genuine. 

Using care cosmetics as you age 

There are so many possibilities and ways to experience advanced age gracefully. Drastic methods aren't always the answer. This is where care cosmetics come into play. They keep your skin hydrated, help keep the skin barrier intact, and make your skin feel clean and pure and look healthy. Proper, careful care and cleaning is the basis for healthy, good-looking skin.

Laughter & Radiance 

Whether you’re tired, stressed, in a good mood or grumpy: people can tell it just by looking at your face. While the condition of your skin determines how you look, when it comes to expression and charisma, the facial muscles – known as mimic muscles – play a major role, too. As Charlie Chaplin once said, “A day without laughter is a day wasted.” And, as laughter is known to be healthy, make sure you practice. It's guaranteed to put you in a good mood.

You can't start early enough with the right skincare routines. Because when we talk about sun protection, skincare starts from childhood. Sun protection – that's skincare? Absolutely: the use of suitable sunscreens is a special type of skincare. UV filters help to protect you from beautiful yet harmful UV rays. Not only can sunburn be caused by excessive sunbathing, but long-term skin damage can accumulate over the years. Wrinkles are an outcome of this skin damage. In other words: when the sun's out, watch out. 

And here's something else: Next time you hear "He/she was looking their age," hopefully you understand it with a newfound respect for aging rather than as a slight against them. Take it from TV legend Blacky Fuchsberger: “Age is the fulfillment of a long life.” One thing's for sure: feeling good is the key to looking good. Anyone who likes themselves and feels at ease radiates beauty. More so for some, less for others. It has nothing to do with that little number we call age.

Well aging together 

It's time to get serious: How far would you go to look your best for as long as possible? Or, vice versa: What will you do for your well-being as you age? Check out our Instagram page and discuss tips and tricks on how to age well.