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Louise 45 | The 40 Over 40 Project

ShaBo STUDIO

I look in the mirror and what do I see? A 46-year-old woman having difficulties coming to terms with ageing, thanks to a culture that has made us believe we are worth less than our younger generation. 

I decided to be part of this important project to be a voice for all women over 40, to inform them, it’s a privilege, an honour, and a freedom to age gracefully. We are all ageing and no amount of botox, fillers, products and surgical procedures will defy that fact. Why can’t we age gracefully and have society accept, embrace, respect and celebrate our years of living? I want the media, women, and society in general to stop treating this natural process of life, as though it is a virus that has an expensive cure or a personal inadequacy. 

I want women to be grateful and proud of their lines, it reveals a life lived full of highs and lows, successes and mistakes which enriches wisdom, character, empathy, and love that can’t be taught in a classroom or from scrolling through social media. In more open-minded cultures, the older generations are revered and valued for their experiences, skills, and wisdom. In our Western culture, our generation is shamed for ageing, and we feel forced to spend our well earnt money on products and procedures, that lead us to believe will take away years off our appearance.   

It is not hard to succumb to the daily images forced upon us to look a certain way to feel successful and better about ourselves, you would have to live under a rock to avoid it! The beauty industry feeds off our insecurities and I won’t lie, I too have purchased expensive products and undertaken procedures in the past, to try and stop the ageing process. I felt shame that I have wrinkles, sagging skin, grey hairs, and sunspots, but I want that shame to stop and make a difference. I want women to accept and embrace themselves, and to stop being influenced by an impossible goal. 

Instead of worrying about the lines on our faces or the grey hairs on our head, imagine what we could manifest with positive attitudes, we might start to believe and honour ourselves for the women we are, spend more time helping others, and be truly grateful for all that we have. At the same time, we would be decreasing the pockets of beauty industry executives and have more money to spend on adventures for ourselves, broadening our already vast lifetime of experiences. 

Let’s all celebrate and embrace that aging is a beautiful natural journey in our short time on mother earth. Stop standing behind the camera because you feel shame, stop hiding behind your sunglasses because of your wrinkles. Your children and loved ones don’t care, be the proud woman they want you to be. Stop the burden on our generation to look young, it’s depriving our spirit of the opportunity to experience one of the joys of being over 40, peace and harmony within.

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