“I never imagined I’d say this, but my fifties are the time period I’ve felt the most beautiful,” says clean beauty pioneer Hillary Peterson, who founded True Botanicals in 2014. “The mind plays a critical role in how beautiful we feel. When I was younger, I was still learning to appreciate myself. And I felt a lot more pressure to be ‘perfect.’” One of the original champions of clean beauty, Peterson got into wellness and sustainability after being diagnosed with thyroid cancer. The skin-care brand that grew out of that research is exquisite, and it’s powerful—doubtlessly one of the reasons Peterson looks and feels the way she does today. “Using a few core products can make a huge difference,” she says. “And I think that I was lucky to learn very important skin-care lessons at the right moment—in my late thirties, just as I was seeing my skin’s aging accelerate.”
But diligent skin care is only one piece of the puzzle, Peterson says. “Working toward balance emotionally, physically, and specifically with my skin has made such a big difference in how I look and, equally important, how I feel about how I look.” Here, all the ingredients she believes go into aging beautifully—and happily.
PERFECTION IS NO FUN
I’ve learned to embrace that I am perfectly imperfect, to laugh at my blunders, and to let stuff go more easily. This creates so much more room to be myself and to enjoy the ride. In Rachel Naomi Remen’s book Kitchen Table Wisdom, a CEO and cancer survivor discovers that perfection is “the booby prize.” I really relate to his striving to be exceptional and couldn’t agree more with his revelation about what is, in reality, a completely unreachable, unrealistic goal—one that doesn’t involve a lot of fun!
My mom, who had the same skin as I do, looked like she was in her sixties when she was in her late seventies, and I absolutely believe that genetics played a role. That said, she was dedicated to a healthy diet and a consistent exercise regimen.
MORE FACE OIL
KEEP YOUR KNEES BENT
An older friend who was in the final stage of terminal cancer told me that given all that life can throw our way, we need to learn to “keep our knees bent.” Trying to meet it all—health challenges, greying hair, wrinkles, work, everything else—with bent knees has, for me, created more room for acceptance and gratitude. Resistance is exhausting. So when I feel my knees locking up, I remember how powerful it is to loosen up and flow with the privilege that it is to age.