Growing old gracefully….or not?

You can feel defenceless against the onset of age. (Photo by Pixabay)

Eleanor Roosevelt once said that “Beautiful young people are an accident of nature, but beautiful old people are works of art”.

Maturity is a double-edged sword. Yes, you gain experience, knowledge and insight, but with it you lose youthful exuberance, the sense of adventure and that“superman” feeling where nothing’s beyond you, nothing’s unachievable.

Achy heads, after a long night out, are replaced by achy bones after a long night’s sleep. The amazing becomes ordinary, as you’ve seen it all before….got the T shirt and the box set.

Growing old gracefully is an art if it isn’t to drift into a mire of frustration, regret and disappointment. Many appear (and this is a totally subjective view) to give up as they enter middle age. Losing interest in their appearance, withdrawing from the world, reminiscing about the “good old days”, whilst others embrace their lives, emphasising the positives and making the most of what they have.

I have to admit that I have struggled in recent years and in many ways I too have fallen into a negative mind-set but, with the help of an experienced therapist, changes in my lifestyle and a realisation of what actually makes me tick, I’m moving positively into a new phase of my life.

Looking and feeling good is an important part of my persona, (I’ve even been guilty of hiding behind it in my younger years), but it is an intrinsic part of what is ME, giving me confidence, a feeling of well-being and a sense of purpose.

Hence this blog!

I fell upon the name Manshands after I qualified as a Massage Therapist early in 2019…a neat way of describing my offering in a world dominated by female practitioners. Doing this was a sea change in my professional life, having always been a business owner, dare I say entrepreneur, in advertising, marketing and specialist printing for most of my adult life. I would like to say that I had experienced an epiphany, but I think it can more sensibly be described as a parting of the ways between my old and my new life. I was tired, stressed and drained from 30 years of being on-call, responding to others’ desires and needs, working to deadlines that, in the overall context of life, didn’t really matter. I’d been successful (relatively) but success came at a cost to my mental health and my relationships with those closest to me.

So now, another year on, I’ve decided that massage is not for me (although I’ll still maintain my skills with friends and relatives), but through the contacts I made during my training, I am moving into the natural skincare and cosmetics arena. I’ve travelled extensively to Thailand, India, Vietnam, Sri Lanka, France, Mexico, Turkey and Spain, to name but a few, in the last year and I’ve undertaken professional training in Natural Cosmetic Formulation, Soap making, Cosmetic Manufacturing Practice and the legalities of producing and selling natural cosmetics in the UK and Europe.

I have had an interest in natural body care for many years, long before this adventure, and have imported artisan olive oil soaps and argan oil for personal use for some time.

I have also developed (since my mid-twenties) a penchant for “gentlemen’s” clothing and accessories. Jermyn Street shirts, bespoke tailoring, cashmere, silk ties, English shoes, subtle fragrances have become a big part of my life and I never feel more comfortable than when I am fully “suited and booted”.

So there it is….I intend to grow old gracefully and along the way share the experiences, tastes and products that interest and inspire me through this blog. There’ll be  few things that have you probably  never considered before, maybe some that will enhance the way you live, and definitely information and knowledge that will enable you to make considered decisions about your body and appearance.

After all, your skin, however old and wrinkled, is only a wrapper that contains the you inside….but it needs to be appreciated and cared for in the best way you can.

#matureskin #grumpyoldman #jermynstreet #bespoketailoring #manshands #maturity #middleage #style #


Author: MrM

I think of myself as an analogue man in a digital age. Born in the swinging sixties, traditional values are part of my DNA and the dramatic changes in technology and society in the last 30 years present a constant challenge, physically, mentally and philosophically. Embracing the computer and internet age has been a liberating experience, although it has come at a cost. I was a 21st century "metrosexual" long before the phrase was coined, although in a much more reserved and considered manifestation than the current understanding. Appearance and grooming has always been important to me: I find traditional quality and understatement my natural realm.

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