Katharine Opens Up About Aging To Mark The Relaunch Of The Restorative Serum
To mark the relaunch of the KAHINA RESTORATIVE SERUM, Katharine sits down with global beauty expert Aimee Majoros to discuss her views on aging.
AM: How old are you?
AM: And how does it feel to be 61?
KL: While I would prefer that the number was smaller, I feel great. I am healthy and in shape, and generally happy. I have a vibrant life, full of love and joy.
AM: There has been a great deal of talk about not using the term “anti-aging”. How do you feel about this?
KL: I really don’t know what the alternative is – to the word or the act of aging. Aging is a fact of life and we are fortunate if we get to experience it. It is a sad fact of our culture that we don’t value older women. There is much that is positive about getting older and I am encouraged to see more examples of beautiful older women in the media. The key is to embrace aging, while maintaining good health and fitness, including healthy skin.
AM: Should “anti-aging” make a comeback?
KL: As in much of the English language, the word can evolve to fit the times, but I personally don’t feel offended or see a need to change it. I use the word because I think people understand what it means. I haven’t found a better word to replace it.
AM: People have some very strong feelings about plastic surgery and even less invasive treatments like injectables. What are your feelings on the matter - and have you had any “work” done yourself?
KL: Full disclosure: when I was 40-years-old I decided to address heavy eyelids by getting my eyes surgically done. After having the procedure, I felt more awake than before, but I didn’t really love it aesthetically. My eyes didn’t look like my own and I didn’t think that they fit my facial structure. In addition to having my eyes “done”, I have also experimented with botox and filler but haven’t liked the look on me. So, right now, I am allowing myself to age naturally, focusing instead on having healthy, glowing skin.
Everyone should do whatever they please if it is going to make them feel happier and more positively about themselves. If I knew I could have work done, whether surgery or injectables, and it would look great (I’d particularly like to address sagging neck skin), I would be the first in line!
AM: In the past, no one wanted anyone to know about their face lift! Is this attitude outdated? Is honesty the best policy?
KL: It is hard enough navigating being a woman and the more we can honestly share our experiences with each other, whether it’s about work, having children, menopause, or beauty, the better. As in everything else, I think that women can help others make informed decisions by revealing the truth about their actions, whether it’s an aesthetic plastic surgery procedure or something else.
As with Instagram filters and photoshop, women need to be aware that how others present themselves is not always honest or realistic. Measuring oneself against these representations can cause harm to women and girls.
AM: Many of the female founders in the indie beauty space are millennials. How do you feel about being a 61 year old beauty brand founder?
KL: I don’t think about it much, but I think that other women my age trust me. We’ve been sold a lot of “anti-aging miracles” and realize that it comes down to healthy, nourished skin and using products that make us feel good. At Kahina, we are fully transparent about our products and honest with our customers. We have never relied on images of beautiful women to sell our products. Our customer is too savvy and wouldn’t be fooled by that.
AM: What advice would you give to women in your age range?
KL: As our bodies and skin and hair change, be prepared to update your look to accommodate the changes. Don’t be stuck with a style that worked for you in your 30s or 40s. At the same time, don’t succumb to what you think is “appropriate” to the number you are. We can still dress youthfully. It is all about style.
AM: What do you want younger women like your daughter Grace to know about the aging process?
KL: Embrace aging! It is all part of life. To age successfully, it is important to take care of your skin from a young age. Wear sunscreen! That is something I wish I had known when I was a teenager. Develop healthy habits of exercise and eating early on that will keep you looking and feeling young as you progress in years.
AM: How do you feel about preventing the signs of aging while young?
It is never too early to start caring for your skin with high quality skincare, but consistency is important. Find a simple skincare regimen with high quality ingredients and stick with it for six months to see how your skin responds before deciding to try something new.
AM: What are some changes you have made in your beauty regimen as you have gotten older? What do you think are the most important changes women should make?
KL: My skin needs more and more moisture, firming and skin brightening, which is why we reintroduced the Restorative Serum with ingredients that address those concerns. I have never worn a lot of makeup so I haven’t needed to change my use of foundation, but many women need to adjust to wearing less makeup and/or more translucent formulas as it can accentuate wrinkles. I recently cut my hair really short to streamline my beauty regimen. Everything I do now needs to really perform while making me feel good, and true to myself.
AM: Kahina has been around for over a decade. How has Kahina changed in that time? Has getting older been the catalyst for these changes?
KL: I used to feel very competitive and nervous about all the brands that have popped up in the green beauty space since we started. I have relaxed a lot since then. Our customers have proven very loyal to Kahina and I am happy to provide them with the excellent products they have come to expect. I guess I have gotten more chill as I’ve aged.
AM: Who are some women you admire that are Gen X and beyond?
KL: I was devastated at the passing of Joan Didion. As a fifth generation Californian transplanted to New York myself, her clear-eyed views of the state and the country really resonate with me and her words have never rung as true to me as they do now. I have always been a big fan of her pared-down fashion sense as well.
I would add Frances McDormand to my list of women-of-a-certain-age that I admire. She is so brave and authentic in her portrayals of older women, such as in Nomadland.
AM: Lastly (gotta ask this!) - what did you think of “And Just Like That”? There’s been so much talk about the portrayal of aging there - what is your take on it?
KL: These characters perfectly illustrate my previous point about not getting stuck on a style that might have worked on you at an earlier age. They don't seem to have evolved and grown or embraced the valuable life experience that comes with growing older.