Anti-aging: Should we lose the term?

Anti-aging is one of the top-searched keywords on the internet. The notion of turning back the clock draws patients to dermatologists and clients to med-spas, and the term is part of skin care advertising for thousands of products from over the counter moisturizers to prescription peels and injectables.

So it comes as something of a shock that this month the publishers of Allure, a leading fashion and beauty magazine, announced that they’re banning the term anti-aging from their editorial copy. Huffington Post quotes Allure‘s Michelle Lee on the thinking behind the change:

“Whether we know it or not, [the term is] subtly reinforcing the message that aging is a condition we need to battle — think antianxiety meds, antivirus software, or antifungal spray,” wrote Editor-in-Chief Michelle Lee on Monday, adding, “Repeat after me: Growing older is a wonderful thing because it means that we get a chance, every day, to live a full, happy life.”

Allure is putting its cover where its philosophy is, with a September issue featuring ageless cover woman Helen Mirren. (Of course, if we all aged as gorgeously as Dame Helen, maybe we wouldn’t be so anti-!) But the magazine isn’t content to police their own editorial team. Lee is issuing a challenge to all of us to rethink the way we approach aging, to think of it as something we do naturally, beautifully, gracefully, not an enemy in the mirror to vanquish.

Huffington Post points out that the idea that beauty comes in all shapes, sizes, colors, and ages — by now a standby of fashion — has yet to catch on in the beauty biz:

Fashion has slowly but surely done a better job at being more inclusive and accepting of race, size, and age. The beauty industry has been a bit slower on its feet. Plus-size model Precious Lee previously pointed out that beauty advertisements exclude models over a certain size, for example, despite the fact that women of all sizes can wear makeup.

At Comprehensive Dermatology Center of Pasadena, it’s our motto that healthy skin is beautiful skin — at any age. Though we’ll continue to use the keyword anti-aging to describe many of our cosmetic treatments and products, the only aging we’re dead-set against is premature, preventable damage to skin that causes early wrinkling, sagging, and spots and can lead to skin cancer. Otherwise, we’re here to help you live gracefully and beautifully every year of your life.

What about you? How do you feel about the term anti-aging? Share your comments with us on social media, or talk to our cosmetic consultant Mary Lou Brimecombe today about protecting and reclaiming your own ageless beauty.