I thought I’d write about an insight I gained after having lunch with my mum and several of her girlfriends. This group were around the 60 age-mark and all looked great for their age – a bunch of cool babyboomers who were well dressed, fun, younger looking than their real age, and more liberal in the wave of their conversation than some of my peers.
The conversation turned towards cosmetic surgery, a theme spurred by the sighting of an adjacent female diner who’d obviously had a lot of work done to her face, including some very obvious and not so attractive trout pout lips. This opened a flood of opinionated and animated discourse on aging and cosmetic surgery.
So what did I learn from their comments?
- That women particularly in the ‘mature’ bracket check each other out as much as younger women do.
- They compare how good or bad they’ve aged in comparison to their friends and people of a similar age – therefore the focus is now ‘have I aged better than her?’
- When a husband compliments a particularly fresh looking friend, the reaction is to tell him that ‘she’s obviously had surgery’.
- This was common mentality amongst similar aged and like-minded friends.
And on having cosmetic surgery themselves :
- There was a definite pro-surgery attitude provided they were confident that it would look good and natural. ‘I would have plastic surgery but am terrified that something will go wrong..it’s not the cost or the fact that I want to grow old gracefully – bollocks to that! I just want to do something that will make me look better with no risk”.
- That women compete with each other all their lives.
- Female babyboomers obsess about their own personal beauty issues (in this case aging) as much as teenage girls may obsess about bad skin and dress size.
- That women don’t want to grow old gracefully – they want to look good – not tons younger but not old either.
- That cosmetic surgery is appealing, but the perceived risk of something going wrong is off putting.
- That there is a huge market for no-risk-of-going-wrong cosmetic procedures.