Two weeks ago on Thursday evening, AGEIST participated as the media partner in the Menopause, Beauty, and Wellness event with Pause Well-Aging at Neiman Marcus in Hudson Yards. We are here because we feel that stigmatizing menopause is fundamentally wrong on a human level. To not talk about, or to shun, a normal human life phase that women may experience for 50% of their lives is medieval.
Here are our top takeaways from the event.
- Women are hungry, starved even, for more information about menopause. The turnout for this event: 250 RSVPs for 100 chairs. Women want to know if their symptoms are normal. Once you are officially in menopause (1 year without a cycle) you are in for life. There is no such thing as post-menopause. It is a permanent life shift.
- The connection between menopause and beauty is HUGE for women. When Rochelle, founder of Pause, stated that she doesn’t believe in anti-aging, but favors the idea of “well-aging on your own terms,” she almost got a standing ovation. No more anti-aging, please. The appeal of Pause is pragmatic. Their moisturizer addresses very specific needs such as collagen loss, extreme dryness.
- Your body is different. Best not to resist. In juxtaposition to the above, connecting menopause and beauty is only appealing if it can offer real help. Otherwise, you are just fanning fears about an externalized ideal, which now feels even more impossible to attain. Many women who used to know all the tricks of their body (e.g. how to lose those 5 pounds in a hurry after a splurge; the right amount of exercises to stay toned; how much alcohol can be fun versus annihilate you), now find themselves in a different body. All the rules have changed. Your body is not the body you know. This is a fact, not a feeling.
- Movement is the fountain of youth. The speaker who got the most overall cheers was Jessica, a physiotherapist and Rochelle’s partner. Someone asked her what top 5 exercises someone should do after 40, and her answer was that’s the wrong way to think about it. It’s not about the repetition of 5 anythings. It’s about moving often and in as many different ways as possible. Jump, lunge, bend, push, pull, up, down, pick up heavy things, etc. Functional movement. Can you do the things you need to be doing? An example: Can you get up if you fall skiing? Could you do it if your legs were uphill? Could you do it in soft powder and you can’t use your ski pole?