New York Times Columnist Anna Quindlen Talks Botox and Fillers
Anna Quindlen bestselling author and Pulitzer Prize winning New York Time’s columnist, speaks candidly about her use of botox in her book, “Lots of Candles, Plenty of Cake.” In her interview with NPR, Terry Gross asked Quindlen about her use of facial fillers and botox and whether or not she is “giving into” age denial. Read the whole article.
GROSS: So in your new book, “Lots of Candles, Plenty of Cake,” you write that cosmetically what passes for the baseline for women has become increasingly impossible. And you’re talking about how there’s been so much plastic surgery and Botox treatments and this and that, that women have very unrealistic expectations that they’re supposed to measure up to. But then you write that you’ve had Botox treatments and facial fillers. So do you feel like you have given in to these and possible models as opposed to like resisting them? Do you feel like you’re giving into the kind of age denial that you write about?
QUINDLEN: Actually, in my case, it wasn’t age denial. It was that in photographs I kept looking really crabby. And I didn’t feel crabby at all, as you can tell by the title of this book. And eventually I think I said something to my dermatologist who said, oh, we can fix that. And I went home and thought about it and thought about it. And then I thought, hell, let’s see what it looks like. I had what I would describe as the number 11 between my eyebrows. And when I smiled it sort of made me look like I wasn’t really smiling at all. And once she took it away, I thought I’m doing this for the rest of my life.
(SOUNDBITE OF LAUGHTER)
QUINDLEN: Because I didn’t look crabby in photographs anymore. And that was the same case with, you know, having the fillers around my mouth – that I didn’t look crabby. I have a 23-year-old daughter. I have a limited ability to fool myself about whether I look young. I just didn’t want to look like I was in a bad mood all the time. The stuff that makes me kind of sad – and I think it happens more with beautiful women who have grown up with that sense of their face is their fortune, which I didn’t – is this attempt to kind of embalm it – to have it set in stone, to have your face not look any different. I think it’s vainglorious and I think sometimes it works against the reality. For example, I think in many ways Meryl Streep, who is a person with very strong features, a very strong face, looks more beautiful in her 60s than she did in her 20s or 30s, although when you see “Sophie’s Choice,” she’s pretty breathtaking then. And I think what happens to a lot of the women who try to halt the passage of time is that they wind up looking like someone else entirely.
GROSS: So the facial fillers, what are they?
(SOUNDBITE OF LAUGHTER)
QUINDLEN: Oh. They’re like little beads of stuff that they put under divots or lines in your skin and they sort of plump it out a little bit.
GROSS: So do you feel like you have stuff in your face now or that part of your face is paralyzed as a result of the treatments?
QUINDLEN: I don’t. I mean my face is still about as mobile as a face can be. Some would say too mobile, but yeah, I mean when you do a tiny little bit of this stuff, it doesn’t do any of those things that people worry about. It doesn’t paralyze anything. Everything still moves, works, looks exactly the same – except that I don’t have a number 11 between my forehead and I don’t look like I’m ticked off a lot of the time in pictures.
I don’t think of it as any different from having my eyebrows waxed. And believe me, nobody wants to see me with my eyebrows as they are in nature. I’m half Italian. It looks like a freight train of eyebrow, and that’s why somebody takes them off, you know, every 10 days or so. So I don’t really see this as a whole lot different.
Can you relate to Ms. Quindlen’s truthful talk? We can. You can hear the whole interview here on NPR here.