Sixty percent of women over 35 say they would rather hear "you look young" than "you look thin," according to a survey by British skincare line Sanctuary Spa.
What's more, anxiety about aging seems to peak for many women on the eve of their 40th birthday, the Daily Mail reports. (It probably doesn’t help that stars, like Amy Adams, Penelope Cruz and Eva Mendes, all make 40 look like the new 30 while maintaining their photoshoot-ready bodies all year long.)
The good news is that the women in the survey seemed to regain their confidence with age, with women over 55 being the least concerned about how old they looked.
French actress, Catherine Deneuve famously quipped, “When you get older, you have to be ready to trade your ass for your face.” Wit aside, her theory has some scientific reasoning to back it up. Studies have shown that as you age, a lower body mass index can actually make you look older. A study of aging in identical twins, published in Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, found that up until twins turned 40, the heavier twin, with the higher BMI, looked older. But, after 40, the thinner twin looked older.
The researchers suggested that being thin can exacerbate the loss of facial volume caused by getting older.
Even if you’re blessed with great genes, age-related changes to your face are inevitable. But, there are a few things you can do to slow down the sands of time. Of course, there’s always high-tech anti-aging treatments. But, simply focusing on healthy habits, like sunscreen protection, avoiding stress, limiting your alcohol consumption and, of course, quitting smoking can help, too.