You know you're a grownup when you stop saying, "I'm going to age naturally" and start saying, "my natural age needs some help!"
On The Early Show segment Yikes, I'm A Grownup, Martha Quinn looks at whether or not to cosmetically alter.
Eventually, every human being has to face Father Time. Just when you think you've made friends with your grown-up face, it happens. Another wrinkle!
That's what finally drove me to investigate cosmetic surgery.
As I sat at plastic surgeon Dr. Richard Ellenbogen's office, I was advised to get something called a forehead lift in the next few years.
Dr. Ellenbogen says northern European women usually have brows that tend to fall a little bit, giving a grumpy look. "[The forehead lift] restores the eyes to where they were. Like when you were on MTV," he explains to me.
But I'm definitely not ready to take the surgery plunge. So, I decided to visit the office of a dermatologist, Dr. Kristen Walker, to take a look at less painful procedures.
There, Lester Neilson gets injections to smooth his brow, while Shari Forman gets collagen in her lips.
"It was kind of like I was a chow dog, just very scrunched up all the time, even when I was very relaxed. People would say, 'what's wrong with this guy?'" explains Neilson.
Forman says the collagen injection was worth the pain: "Absolutely, absolutely. I didn't want a big chance, I just wanted to know I had a lip, and I do," she adds, laughing.
But I am not too crazy about needles, either. So I asked Dr. Walker if there is something else I can do.
"Definitely, you're not alone. I have a lot of patients saying 'you're not putting that needle anywhere near me,'" she says. "There are creams, and Retin-A is one of them. There are alpha hydroxy acids, and what they do is they actually plump up the collagen layer," she explains.
No needles, that sounds awesome! But doesn't anyone ever age the old-fashioned way?
My final stop was at the salon of Ole Henriksen, to check out a natural skin care approach. "I believe you should brave it, age naturally and embrace it, celebrate what you see by maintaining healthy skin," he suggests.
But it's hard to celebrate when suddenly, every time I pick up a magazine, everyone looks younger than me. Even people I know are older than I am.
Yet Henriksen points out, "These are airbrushed images, people who've had a lot of plastic surgery. It's not reality."
So he helped me deal with my reality by giving my face a workout with a strange looking machine that invigorates the skin.
His favorite tool produces sound waves and looks like it comes from Dr. Frankenstein's laboratory. The feeling is as if you were at a car wash and your fine lines wer getting buffed out.
"It works well on the car, it works well on the skin," says Henriksen.
Then he had me soak in a Japanese tub. Sounds relaxing, but actually I was hard at work, turning back the hands of time.
Henriksen's best tip for looking younger is to pamper yourself. When you're relaxed, you look better.
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Copyright 1999 CBS. All rights reserved.