No matter what kind of eye cream I use, those dark circles just won’t go away.   Sleep and cucumber slices under my eyes seem far more effective.  Crow’s feet—haven’t quite figured out what to do with those things, but I like what they do when I smile.

Twice a day, I wash my face with soap and cold water and moisturize with a calendula face cream.   Every now and then, a pimple shows up unannounced and takes me back to my teenage years.  Never thought I’d find such humor in a pimple at 40.  (Hell, I never thought I’d still get pimples at 40.)  Zits used to elicit so much anger in me during high school and college.    Lately I’ve returned to Neutrogena—the soap of my pimple days.

About once a week or so, I use witch hazel for a deep cleanse.  I keep my lips moist with a shea butter-based chapstick or Carmex, whatever I can get to first.  A couple times a month, I give myself a facial with a mix of avocado, Greek yogurt, and honey.  It’s nice and cold.  A bit tingly.  Thirty minutes later, I wash it off.  No need for lotion.  My face is smooth and silky, refreshed and youthful… just like in the those commercials.

Youthful.  Funny that this is what I am shooting for now.

Contrary to what the formula above might suggest, I don’t have to put much effort into looking youthful. (I know a lot of women are hating me right now as I say this, but it’s true.)

I’ve never looked my age.  I have a baby face.  People have always mistaken me for being younger than I am.  Overall, this has been good, but it does have a price.

From my late teens to early thirties, I hated this because usually the subtext of saying, “You look so young,” was, “You look too young to know what you’re doing.  You are too young to write a memoir.  You are too young to be a good professor.  You are too naïve.”

But one of the nice things about turning 40 is that I seem to have been admitted into a new club—an I-don’t-give-a-shit-about-what-you-think club. Quite liberating.  Truly, for me this began around 37 or 38.

I am at a place in my life where I am much less tolerant of bullshit people.  I am quick enough and bright enough and confident enough to tell people, “Hey, I guess you’ll just have to buy the book,” or “Just ask my students and they’ll tell you what I’m like,”  and walk off into the sunset, flaunting my young, bright, beautiful caramel brown skin.

Copyright © 2013 Janet Stickmon



  1. Hi Janet, this is Arana. You know what, I’m also feeling the “I don’t give a damn about bullshit people” sentiment too! – and the second part to this is that, I don’t want them in my life, and I have cut them OUT of my life!! This includes family too! In fact, I don’t know if you’ve noticed at The Topaz Club my lack of involvement there. Over the last 2 years, I’ve become more and more introverted than I already was before then, and now I’ve become..not withdrawn, but really, to myself and about myself. I’ve drifted away into my own universe with my Tyler Wentworth doll collection, but I’ve become very selective about who I respond to even on Facebook. I’m no longer interested in small talk and losing myself in crowds of people whose attention I don’t have and who don’t have my whole attention. I prefer to interact with people one on one because we both have each other’s uninterrupted, direct attention. And I’m really standing my ground on how I feel about things, in general, even moreso than before.

    I too am taking in the fresh air, breathing, getting my massages when I feel like it, and putting together what I hope will end up becoming a knock-out presentation of fashion dolls that are not only in my image, but also will reflect the Creole aesthetic to be expressed through fashion, glamour, and beauty. OK, so I’ve given a much deeper thought to my state of being at having turned 40 than I had said I did, but this is really where I’m at at this point in my life right now.


  2. What a great blogpost and awesome site. Glad to have met you at the FWN, Janet! Congratulations! You are so deserving of the Global 100 award. I look forward to reading more insightful pieces and stories from you. Thanks for sharing. Stay in touch 🙂


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: