I posted the companion video to this article a couple of weeks ago. I wanted to wait a bit to see what kind of reaction my most recent physical changes received. Quite frankly I have been amazed. Not only have I continued to receive comments that I look so much younger but other things have happened as well. But I'll get to that in a moment.
Probably the most beneficial result of my make over has been how it has made me feel. Over the past months I have felt better than I have in probably 20-25 years and I'm just talking about how I feel physically...health-wise. The aches and pains I had suffered with for years are for the most part gone. I still take an anti-inflammatory medication every day and I may try and taper off it to see the results, but in general I believe inflammation of the body's cells is one negative factor to longevity and overall good health, so I will probably always take them.
From a mental health standpoint because of my improved overall appearance, at least my perception of the improvement, my feelings of self worth and self concept has soared. Historically I have been plagued by feelings of poor self worth and image my entire life. I've been a perfectionist, not regarding what I expect of others but what I expected of myself. Consequently any perceived flaw I jumped on and hammered myself viciously. By taking the steps to improve my physical appearance my tendency at self imposed negativity has greatly decreased. Because my overall negativity has decreased I have been able to make some mental health improvements and realizations in areas that has plagued me my entire life.
Now to briefly describe what I've done to look 10-20 years younger. Of course some of you who are 20 years younger than I am (those of you in the mid-thirties) there may not be much help in what I've done other than you possibly proactively taking these steps before they become a reality for you. The first thing I did was color my mustache. It took a few year off my appearance but it was a hassle. It was only when I totally shaved off my mustache that I began to look significantly younger. Then there was my hair. Gray had begun to take over. Granted I didn't really start showing the gray until just a few years ago, you don't realize how it looks until it is gone. Now there are many who claim that men look distinguished with a little gray around the edges. Well, that may be so but being distinguished looking can be achieved in other ways if needed.
I colored my hair and totally removed the gray. It was dramatic. Along with the color job I chose to go back to a hair style I had normally worn when in high school and college. I went from a comb back longer style to a shorter comb over hair style. One of the positive physical attributes I have always had has been my hair. Thick and wavy, dark and sexy has always gotten positive comments from the ladies. The gray hair definitely took away from those comments over the years. I'm getting those comments again and it feels great!!!
I had recently reviewed some of my old videos over the past couple years and I noticed that at an earlier time my face looked healthier. My skin looked better, more glowing, smooth and less ruddy. I thought back and one of the things I had stopped doing gradually over the past year was to no longer use pre-shave products. I had habitually used as a pre-shave Corn Huskers Lotion scented with essential or fragrance oils or Equate Deep Cleansing Cream (a generic of Noxzema Cleansing Cream). Both products are great at moisturizing and adding a level of slickness. Noxzema was created at the turn of the last century as a treatment for eczema, thus the name Noxzema (no eczema). I began using these products again in addition to Every Man Jack Post Shave Face Lotion on occasion. I have already seen improvement, particularly under my eyes and the bags I've earned from many years of too little sleep. Sadly in college I developed the habit that sleep was one of those essential things in life that you can learn to live without. I'm trying to get more sleep but I usually only require 6 hours to be fully functional.
Now for some of the other things that has resulted from looking and feeling younger. I don't know if they are connected or just coincidental. For one, my superiors at work are urging me to compete for advancement opportunities that will soon become available in the next few months. That's never happened to me before. My current love interest continues to progress and the relationship is growing and becoming richer. That could have always been in the works but I feel much more comfortable with where we are in our relationship than I did just a few weeks earlier. I think it has a lot to do with how I'm feeling about myself. When you are confident in yourself you don't sweat the small stuff anymore. The final thing that is interesting is that I've been the same weight for probably two months. I've maintained losing 31 pounds since February. I haven't been exercising in about two months also, so nothing has changed regarding my body size, etc. Nevertheless, since dying and changing the style of my hair the number of comments about me "losing weight" has multiplied by at least a factor of 3 or 4. More people are noticing the weight loss now than some of the other appearance factors have improved. A side note to this is that I finally broke down and bought a couple pair of jeans that actually fit instead of the over-sized baggy ones I had been wearing. The first time I wore a pair of jeans that was snugger and more close fitting my lady asked me if I had lost more weight. She saw enough difference to say something about it and she sees me on almost a daily basis.
To make a long story short in conclusion, it's some of the simplest things that can collectively make a big difference in your appearance for the better. We men don't worry nearly as much about our appearance as our female companions. Maybe we should be more aware and conscious about those things sometime. Over time you don't really recognize the negative impact that a few extra pounds, a few gray hairs, or a boring never changing look has upon your overall self concept and mental health. With the problems and challenges of daily life we often don't consider such things. Yet it is the overall impact of those collective little things that can be the difference between feeling good and feeling bad. Men we need to take care of ourselves better. We deserve it and our family and loved ones deserve it too.
Good Shaves, Be Happy, Be Safe