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BEAUTY AND THE BEAST: ‘ANTI-AGING’ PRODUCTS

By March 15, 2016Culture, Longevity

Woman, compared to men, are short-changed and disrespected in the workplace; under-covered or overexposed by media; ripped off with “beauty” products and salons; among other sexist biases. That said, it would be ludicrous to suggest as a solution to these injustices that women must somehow change. Similarly, with racism, the solution is acceptance and progress, not denial or ignorance.

Certainly no one in their right mind would use the term “anti-women” or “anti-Latino” in advocacy or even conversation, let alone advertising. So why then is it acceptable – in regard to the other “ism,” “ageism” — to promote “anti-aging” as the objective of cosmetic products and treatments?

Insulting, prejudicial and beyond: the promise to stop or turn back time is flat out false advertising!

No wonder ageism is the least understood and most overtly abused of biases.

Believe it or not:

  • The Good Housekeeping Research Institute sponsors an annual “Anti-aging Awards”
  • WebMD features the section “Best Anti-aging Makeup”

These false and ageist claims should not be tolerated:

  • Plantscription with “anti-aging serum” by Origins
  • Anti-aging Skin Care is “science on a mission … recommended for mature skin” by Clear Essence
  • Revitalizing Supreme with “Global Anti-Aging Crème” by Estee Lauder
  • Regenerative with “Anti-Aging Ultra Rich Cream” by Algenist
  • Miracle Worker with “miraculous anti-aging moisturizer”; and Time in a Bottle with “age-defying serum” both by Philosophy
  • Double Serum with “Complete Age Control Concentrate” by Clarins

Fortunately, some companies do present aging in a more positive light:

  • Bare Minerals deserves credit for creatively naming its new line “Skinlongevity” and describing its purpose to “Empower your skin to look healthier and younger, longer.”
  • Olay earns mixed reviews for producing the cleverly branded “Regenerist” line; but misses the mark with its Covergirl + Olay “Simply Ageless Anti-Aging Foundation Primer.”

Because aging is an inevitable fact of life, it stands to reason “anti-aging” is at least a false claim or much worse a fatalistic viewpoint. On the other hand, “pro-aging” makes sense, literally and figuratively.

4 Comments

  • Gary says:

    So true. Eye-opening.

  • ed says:

    Nicely put.

  • Tracy Huddleson says:

    It is terribly embedded in our society — it will take an enormous pivot to address out the myriad ways ageism affects us all…and it’s hard to envision that truly happening in my lifetime!

  • So true. And why don’t we see more promotions for the wisdom and character that coming with aging? You never see “anti-wisdom” and “anti-character” used as a selling point, but it may as well be if anti-aging is.

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