Antimicrobial, antibacterial, antioxidant—there’s a whole lot of “anti” words in our professional vocabulary. However, none are as potent, explanatory, descriptive, or as inclusive as anti-aging. What does it really mean to reverse the signs of aging and is it necessarily a good thing? In this episode of ASCP Esty Talk, Maggie and Ella discuss types of aging, societal views, and esthetics' role in anti-aging.
ASCP Esty Talk with Maggie Staszcuk and Ella Cressman
Produced by Associated Skin Care Professionals (ASCP) for licensed estheticians, ASCP Esty Talk is a weekly podcast hosted by Maggie Staszcuk and Ella Cressman. We see your passion, innovation, and hard work and are here to support you by providing a platform for networking, advocacy, camaraderie, and education. We aim to inspire you to ask the right questions, find your motivation, and give you the courage to have the professional skin care career you desire.
About Ella Cressman:
Ella Cressman is a licensed esthetician, certified organic formulator, business owner, and absolute ingredient junkie! As an educator, she enjoys empowering other estheticians and industry professionals to understand skin care from an ingredient standpoint rather than a product-specific view.
She has spent many hours researching ingredients, understanding how and where they are sourced, as well as phytochemistry, histological access, and complementary compounds for intentional skin benefits. In addition to running a skin care practice, Cressman founded a comprehensive consulting group, the HHP Collective, and has consulted for several skin care lines, including several successful CBD brands.
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About Maggie Staszcuk:
Maggie has been a licensed esthetician since 2006 and holds a bachelor’s degree in business administration from Stephens College. She has worked in the spa and med-spa industry, and served as an esthetics instructor and a director of education for one of the largest schools in Colorado before coming to ASCP as the Advanced Modality Specialist.
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0:00:49.2 Speaker 1: You are listening to ASCP Esty Talk, where we share insider tips, industry resources and education for aestheticians at every stage of the journey. Let's talk because ASCP knows, It's all about you.
0:01:04.8 Ella Cressman: Hello and welcome to ASCP Esty Talk. I'm Ella Cressman, licensed aesthetician certified organic skincare formulator and content contributor for Associated Skin Care Professionals.
0:01:16.1 Maggie Stasek: I'm Maggie Stasek, licensed aesthetician and ASCP's cosmetology education manager.
0:01:21.5 EC: And we're welcoming back, Tracy Donley, our Executive Director. How are you, Tracy?
0:01:27.3 Tracy Donley: I am fabulous, and I'm so excited about this topic today. But I had to just jump in really quick here 'cause I have to share some insider insights. Did you guys know that we're having a huge Reader's Choice party at the IECSC Show in Las Vegas? Yeah, we're gonna announce all the winners because you guys voted and all the members out there voted and told us what their faves were, as well as we will also have our ASCP influencers there and our 2021 Esty of the year, and probably some of the past ones. So I'm super excited you all are invited, and if you're curious about...
0:02:06.5 TD: "Oh, Tracy, what is this whole like ASCP Esty of the year thing?" Well, it allows you to potentially be on the cover of Skin Deep magazine, so we've already got our one for this year, but you know what, you can just go to the show notes and that's where you'll find where you can submit your really cool unique story and why You should be the next Esty Of The Year.
0:02:29.2 EC: Yes, very exciting.
0:02:30.8 TD: Yes, I would like more.
0:02:32.8 EC: I apply every year...
0:02:34.8 TD: I know, I'm sorry, I just can't pick you.
0:02:37.3 EC: That's okay.
0:02:38.7 TD: Just kidding.
0:02:40.2 EC: Makes me feel you're anti... Me. Speaking of anti, let's talk about... Let's talk about the word anti. In our industry, we hear antimicrobial, antibacterial antioxidant, basically a whole lot of 'anti' words, right? But there is none as potent as explanatory, as descriptive or as inclusive as anti-aging.
0:03:07.0 TD: Bum bum bum.
0:03:09.0 EC: What does it really mean? And is anti-aging necessarily a good thing? Let's take a look. Let's examine the word anti, the prefix. So anti, the prefix means against opposite of, anti-particle of and use information of compounds of words like anti-clime, antifreeze and words related to anti are antithetical. Conflicting. Contrary, incompatible, inconsistent, paradoxical. So it makes sense when we're talking about aging, which is scary.
0:03:41.7 TD: I hate it.
0:03:42.5 EC: That we want to anti, we wanna do the opposite of. Let's talk about anti-aging.
0:03:49.3 MS: So looking at three different definitions, somewhat the same, but also different, the Oxford Dictionary says it's designed to prevent the appearance of getting older, Merriam-Webster Dictionary says that it is used or tending to prevent or lessen the effects of aging, and Cambridge Dictionary says anti-aging substances are intended to prevent or limit the process of becoming old, so I think we can all agree, anti-aging is we just don't want to age, we don't wanna get old...
0:04:22.3 EC: No, we don't.
0:04:23.2 TD: I just have to jump in here. It scares me so much that the definitions use the word prevent, 'cause my little dear old dad who is 78 years old, always says, "Hey, if you're not aging, then you're dying."
0:04:39.6 MS: And I think that's the point is that it's irrelevant.
0:04:43.1 TD: Yeah I mean like to say, it prevents, that's horrible. I don't wanna die.
0:04:46.8 MS: No, I don't either.
0:04:49.2 TD: I just wanna live.
0:04:50.2 EC: Well I think that's the correlation, is that somehow if we're aging, we're dying too like we're on our way, so if we can just stay right here for a little bit longer, aging is a real concern, and we know that because when you type in on a search engine, What is aging? There are so many... You know how you type in something and all these associated phrases come up?
0:05:10.8 TD: Oh yes, do I.
0:05:12.1 EC: So this is just a short little list of what happened when I said anti-aging and it says, What age do you start to age? Can over-thinking cause wrinkles? Does anxiety age your face? Why is my face aging so fast? Does milk cause aging? What can I drink to look younger? Does coffee age your skin? What's the biggest cause of aging? What are two types of aging? What is primary aging? Why do some people age slower? What is the happiest age of your life? What happens in the body when aging? What is not normal aging? Like the...
0:05:43.2 TD: Oh my gosh, I'm like having an anxiety attack right now, like there's nobody just hearing all that craziness.
0:05:49.9 EC: And I think that's the thing, is that the thought of aging is scary. So let's look at different types of aging so we can analyze what's really... What is really going on here? So did you know that there are two types? There are a lot of different types of aging, but for this purpose, there's two types of aging, chronological and biological, so when you think of chronological versus biological, I think of the playground taunt, an elementary school playground taunt of, "Act your age, not your shoe size".
0:06:22.8 TD: Oh but there's a song from the Prince. I love that.
0:06:23.6 MS: I've never heard that.
0:06:25.1 EC: You've never heard that?
0:06:25.2 MS: I've never heard that.
0:06:25.3 TD: No what?
0:06:26.4 TD: That was in the Prince song. Oh, that's right, you guys are so much younger.
0:06:29.5 EC: Act your age, not your shoe size. And maybe we can do the twirl, yeah so...
0:06:32.8 TD: Aha, aha.
0:06:36.3 EC: That is exactly what it is...
0:06:36.4 TD: I think it was in Pretty Woman too.
0:06:38.2 EC: Your chronological age is your actual age, so at the time of this recording, I am 43. Your biological age would be the age you present. At the time of this recording, I'm 32.
0:06:52.0 TD: Who decides what those two ages look like?
0:06:55.4 EC: You do.
0:06:56.1 TD: Oh really?
0:06:57.1 EC: You do.
0:07:00.4 TD: Okay, so I'm 48 at the time that this has been recorded, and I am 42 biologically as I present.
0:07:09.3 EC: No, so biologically, there's a few different factors in there, and that is basically how you've aged. Are you acting younger? And we're gonna get into that, in just second.
0:07:19.8 TD: Like immature?
0:07:23.5 EC: I guess technically, but I'm fine with that. Okay, based on those definitions that we look at than other things.
0:07:31.2 TD: Wait. Did you notice how Maggie didn't volunteer her age and her biological age...
0:07:35.7 MS: I defer to comment, Tracy.
0:07:40.2 TD: I was like, Wait a second, slow our roll. Something's missing here.
0:07:44.8 MS: I am 38 at the time of this recruiting, and I present as 20.
0:07:54.3 TD: You are over-promising. I don't mean that in a mean way. I'm just saying.
0:07:58.0 MS: If you need me to buy you a bottle of wine, I don't mind.
0:08:02.3 EC: Oh I thought you were gonna say, "If you need a bottle... " "I do, I am a baby, Ella." And if you want me to attach a nipple to that. If you wanna attach a nipple to it, none of my business.
0:08:14.5 TD: We'll just look the other way.
0:08:15.5 EC: If you want me to buy for your biological age, I will do that.
0:08:19.6 MS: Thank you. I need you to buy for my shoe size Ella. Oh Goodness, I don't wanna go back there, too far back.
0:08:27.1 TD: I hope everybody else is commenting where they're listening to this, what their chronological and biological age are.
0:08:33.7 TD: Scream it, tell us...
0:08:35.7 MS: Tell us on social media.
0:08:36.6 TD: Tell us on social media, we wanna know. Send a picture, we'll decide. I'm just kidding, that sounds harsh.
0:08:40.9 EC: There are a couple of things that do influence chronological and... Not chronological, but about your biological age, and let's talk about those.
0:08:49.3 EC: So there are two types of aging, we have intrinsic aging and extrinsic aging, your intrinsic aging are going to be internal factors that are affecting your chronological age, how you appear, so it is sometimes referred to as chronological Aging, and it is inherent degenerative process due to declining physiological functions and capacities, this is gonna be things like your collagen and elastin is diminishing...
0:09:18.7 EC: You're developing fine lines and ring calls, and it's more a genetic than it is anything like your extrinsic factors and extrinsic aging is going to be smog pollution exposure to sun. It's also going to be your lifestyle choices, this is going to be things like you're a drinker, you're a smoker, you're partying all night. You're not getting sleep.
0:09:42.2 MS: I feel like she's looking at me.
0:09:44.5 EC: I'm looking at her with that whole bottle of wine and a nipple on it. Yeah let's get that for her so we can get her aged up.
0:09:51.6 MS: I call that purposeful aging.
0:09:54.8 TD: Knowingly.
0:09:55.7 MS: Knowingly aging.
0:09:57.3 EC: Controlled aging.
0:09:58.6 MS: And then you know what? I'm gonna go burn it off later with my chemical peel.
0:10:04.4 TD: See yes, it is a yin and yang.
0:10:06.2 MS: Yeah, yin and yang. I like it.
0:10:08.5 EC: It's testing.
0:10:09.9 TD: It's job security. Bring your friends with you and there you go.
0:10:14.0 TD: Hey guys, stop. Let's take a quick break.
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0:10:55.4 MS: Let's get back to the conversation.
0:10:57.8 EC: Now, we've talked about the types of aging, now, let's talk about kinds of aging, so we did mention biological before, but what does it mean to have biological as a kind of aging? So biological age refers to the present position of an individual related to the potential lifespan, so we are all... Can we say middle-aged-ish? The biological age of an individual is closely related to chronological age, but the two are not identical, especially in Maggie's case, since they are derived different concepts as well as different sets of measurements.
0:11:31.9 EC: So as I said, I'm in my early 40s, but I act like I'm in my early 30s. And then we talk about psychological age, so psychological refers to the position the individual is relative to some population with regard to adaptive capacities as observed or inferred from measurements of behavior, so that would be a psychological age would be your reaction to development, so your psychological age is related to your chronological age and your biological age, but it is not necessarily the same or a combination of these, so where you are psychologically, developmentally, for example, for a teenage brain or the capacity of a younger person, or some of the men I've dated, who were in their 30s, but...
0:12:22.3 TD: What I'm just thinking about it, as you're saying this though, is... And this is a question, is that, let's say your mental age is lesser than your current age is, but you could end up looking a lot older even than your current age because the habits, the extrinsic aging is causing you to make poor decisions. I mean, your mental age is having you make poor decisions, which then the extrinsic aging is taking more of effect made you even look older than your chronological...
0:13:00.0 EC: Or chronic sometimes 'cause that's how I feel after I've had that kind of digression to party like that. For example, let's just say that I used to be a lot more social in my 20s and 30s, and now when I'm social, the recovery is...
0:13:17.5 TD: Oh, it's so long. Oh it's terrible.
0:13:19.6 EC: A lot different. It takes a different kind of toll, but I think that to your point, that those will catch up with you eventually.
0:13:30.4 EC: What I think the mindset... There's a study we're gonna talk about in just a minute. The mindset, how that influences your actual aging. It's interesting. So before we get there, let's talk about social as one of the types. So social age, what your social age refers to your social habits and roles of the individual related to group or society. Thinking of how you treat your elders or how they were treated. We should think of a lot of Asian cultures, the way they treat their elders is different than the Western treatment, for example.
0:14:07.1 EC: An individual social age is related to their chronological, biological and psychological age, but not completely defined by them. Another point to think about is millennials. Socially before... What was socially expected, we should say, is that you went to school, once you were done with high school, you went to college, and once you were done with college, you got a house and maybe you got married, and then you had kids and then you...
0:14:32.9 TD: Slow down, Ella. My gosh...
0:14:34.3 EC: And then you retire. And that's what the millenials say. And I'm not ready for that.
0:14:40.0 MS: Not all Millennials, before we write them, let's just say that, this is stereotype.
0:14:44.6 TD: This is the generalization.
0:14:46.3 MS: Yeah. That they're still living at home. Another...
0:14:50.8 TD: Well, now you're gonna get the hate mail. I'm gonna send it all your direction, girl.
0:14:55.3 EC: They're just... That would just challenge the social age. That would be an example of challenging social age. Another example of challenging social age is that at a certain age in your early 60s, you're expected to retire. But baby boomers are still working, so they would be challenging their social age as well. We've talked about anti-aging. But let's switch it up a little bit, shall we?
0:15:20.8 TD: Oh, please. Let's do it.
0:15:21.3 EC: Let's talk about pro. Let's lead into the next part of this, let's talk about pro. The definition of pro is... Or the prefix pro, is that it's indicative of some kind of a favor for a party, a system, idea, without identity to the group. Having anti would be opposite, pro would be positive. Words related to pro are ace, expert, professional, big league, experience, major league, master, seasoned, favoring, in favor of and with, big difference, right?
0:15:52.5 MS: I'd love that.
0:15:52.9 EC: Yeah.
0:15:53.8 MS: Yeah.
0:15:54.8 EC: So can you see your posture changed, Tracy's posture just changed. Maggie has a smile on her face and we're just reading about the word pro. It has a physiological effect on us, let's talk about pro-aging.
0:16:09.1 MS: Pro-aging is about accepting aging, being satisfied with your own aging can make you adopt healthier behaviors, feel in control of how you age and even heighten your immune system. Pro-aging doesn't mean a rejection of cosmetics, but rather more targeted selection towards products designed to enhance the appearance of any age instead of hiding or fighting symptoms of aging, and the philosophy behind pro-aging is to remove all "anti-claims" and replace them with more positive imagery.
0:16:45.8 TD: Okay, I'm loving that. I'm freaking out over here and I'm loving it, I'm taking it in, I love it.
0:16:50.1 EC: It's not to say that the cornerstone of our entire industry is wrong, it's just saying, "Switch it up a little bit," and it's an ideology that internalizing ageist stereotypes is actually harmful for your health. If we put in people in these boxes, we meaning, like if I'm trying to live up to an expectation and I'm not meeting it, whether it's eye wrinkles. Some things should be expected for my level of life experience, but they freak me out.
0:17:21.0 TD: Well, I mean, I was just gonna even say, the whole point of pro, though like what you're saying is I'm embracing it, to even say like, "Yeah, I'm a pro-ager." That means I know what I'm doing now, I know that I can go to my aesthetician and get all the resources and all the procedures and all the services done because I accept it, like accepting it.
0:17:46.5 EC: And the way that you perceive aging can actually influence how you age to your point that you brought up earlier, so aging, like many aspects of life is a self-fulfilling prophecy, positive and negative attitudes can affect your health behaviorally, psychologically and even biologically. I think about my husband, and when I first got... We knew each other in high school, we reconnected later on, and he's 2 years older than me, so he's been like, "Oh, I'm old, we're old." And I'm like, "We are?"
0:18:16.3 TD: And like don't say that [laughter]
0:18:17.0 EC: Oh my Gosh, but it's true all of a sudden. Oh my gosh, we're old. And this whole time we're here, I thought I was 32, for like 8, 9 years. It does have an effect when you're telling yourself these things, I'm in a fight against aging, I'm in a fight against aging, guess what, you are in a fight against aging. But if you're pro-aging or satisfied with your age, you can adopt healthier behaviors and you are in control of how you age and how it heightens your immune system.
0:18:46.4 EC: You are in charge of that and you're going to take aging and you're gonna do the best job possible. It's the same thing, the same actionable items, it's just switching the way you think about it, 'cause I'm gonna be... I'm reminded of the story of my one friend, she's also my antioxidant story, but she called me, and I think we were be probably 32... She called me like... No, 35, it was her birthday, and I said, "What is your problem?" She's like, "I'm just... Can't believe I'm 35, I'm gonna tell everybody I'm 29." I said, "Oh, don't you dare. Tell them you're 40.
0:19:21.2 TD: That's what I do, oh my gosh.
0:19:22.3 EC: You look great for 40, you look horrible for 29." And so, just changing that a little bit.
0:19:30.4 TD: Change the narrative.
0:19:30.8 EC: Because being anti-aging or perceiving age negatively can actually do the opposite for you.
0:19:37.3 MS: I think for the aesthetician perspective too, educating the client that as we age, skin is changing, so to accept that change, like you're saying, Ella, not like fight a rage against it, but then also say, these are the products you need that is gonna support that change and continue to keep your skin looking healthy. Support your skin in this change so that you aren't looking aged or you aren't looking like you are aging.
0:20:08.8 TD: Right. Like keep it hydrated. Keep it supple. Keep it, be proactive. Be a proactive and a pro-ager.
0:20:18.4 TD: Well, I'm seriously embracing. I'm gonna get a t-shirt that says, "pro-aging here."
0:20:23.2 EC: Like a boss.
0:20:24.3 TD: Yeah, pro-aging like a boss.
0:20:26.8 EC: Well, as aging is a total body process and not to mention inevitable, I'm reminded of the updated adage, If you can't beat them, lead them. My chronological age is something I choose to celebrate, and not just because it's way older than my biological age, but because with age comes wisdom. And for those reasons, I believe anti-aging is a four-letter word. With that, I think we can agree that as a term it's not going anywhere, but maybe we soften our viewpoint of it and learn to look at the pro side of life and embrace the foreseeable, well, perhaps acting a few years younger than we really are.
0:21:03.4 TD: I am literally gonna go skipping today. I'm gonna skip in the parking lot to my car today.
0:21:08.4 EC: I love it, and I'll video it.
0:21:10.0 TD: Oh, okay.
0:21:11.6 EC: Check out the show notes.
0:21:14.4 TD: She really probably will, check out the show notes.
0:21:17.3 EC: Now listeners, we really wanna hear from you. What are your thoughts on anti-aging? Is pro-aging, something that crossed your mind about before this podcast? Or what are those thoughts? Let us know. Reach out on our social media platforms, especially Instagram and Facebook, or by emailing, get connected at ascpskincare.com. We want to know all the details. In the meantime, thank you for listening to ASCP Esty Talk, for more information on this episode or for ways to connect with Maggie or myself, or to learn more about ASCP. Check out the show notes and stay tuned for the next episode of ASCP Esty Talk.
0:21:52.8 S1: Thanks for joining us today. If you like what you hear and you want more, subscribe. If you wanna belong to the only all-inclusive association for aestheticians that includes professional liability insurance, education, industry insights, and an opportunity to spotlight your six skills, join @ascpskincare.com, only 259 per year for all this goodness. ASCP knows, it's all about you.Page Break