Miss Mink Feels Old

I never felt old before I started reading wedding message boards and blogs. Age was never really something I thought about all that much. Perhaps it’s because my mother wore her age fairly proudly and never seemed obsessed with looking younger. People always seemed shocked to know her age. Her hair stylist seems convinced that she has a colorist because she’s still a redhead in her late 60s.

Working in academia has probably kept me young at heart. I’m surrounded by the energy and enthusiasm of students in the college bubble. Though I finished graduate school just over a decade ago, people still ask me what year I am as if I’m a student. I haven’t yet considered that a compliment, but I know there’s a time when I will.

Getting engaged at 33 felt just right. I considered myself a city girl before coming to Virginia and city dwellers (especially those in the northern cities) tend to marry a little later than others. I didn’t realize that in the world of wedding blogs and message boards, I’m old.


Image 1 from Style Me Pretty / Photo by Agnes Lopez Photography

Image 2 from Style Me Pretty / Photo by Mademoiselle Fiona

Image 3 from Style Me Pretty / Photo by Olive Juice Studios

Early on in my planning, I felt just fine about my age.

Everyone reading and commenting on wedding sites was in same process and I thought that would bind us together. Over time, however, I started to notice the pictures. I saw one stunning bride after another and as I looked at their amazing gowns and jewelry and hair, I also noticed their completely smooth complexions.

Now, I have a great skin, but at 34, I’m not without a line here and there. I started to think that there was no way I would look as beautiful in my wedding pictures. I’ll have the amazing dress and the pretty details, but I fear that I won’t have that youthful beauty that I see when I seek out wedding inspiration.


Image 1 from Style Me Pretty / Photo by Mirelle Carmichael Photography

Image 2 from Style Me Pretty / Photo by Brooke Courtney Photography

Image 3 from Style Me Pretty / Photo by Laurie Bailey Photography

So what’s a Mink to do? You buy wrinkle cream. I did a bit of research online and decided to start using the Olay Pro-X line and consider seeing a dermatologist to bump up to something stronger about three months before the wedding.

I started drinking more water, assuming that would help, but found articles from NPR and Real Simple that debunk that a bit. I’ll still drink water, but I’m not expecting it to be a fountain of youth.

Lastly, I decided to look through the portfolios of the makeup artists I’ve been considering to see if I can spot some brides who might be around my age. I’ve been looking at blog posts and inspiration shoots, but most of those feature women in their early 20s. I should probably be digging a little deeper. There are plenty of 30-something brides, but we don’t seem as prominent on the wedding blogs.


Image 1 from the Full Bouquet / Photo by Genevieve Leiper

Image 2 from Style Me Pretty / Photo by Jana Marie Photography

Image 3 from Green Wedding Shoes / Photo by Kate Headley

Mr. Mink thinks I’m being totally silly. He says I don’t need any of this stuff. My reasonable side knows that this is a short-lived feeling. That little voice of self-doubt remains.

Has anyone else felt more aware of their age while wedding planning? How have you dealt with it?


Mrs. Mink

Charlottesville, Virginia
Wedding Date:
June 2012
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  1. Member
    Mis Iris 218 posts, Helper bee @ 3:40 pm

    Honestly I didn’t feel old until I started checking out WeddingBee. I’m a little older than you. 33 now, and 35 by the time the wedding date rolls around. I think you look amazing, and I agree with the previous comments. One of my favourite things about weddings is how happy and “in love” the couple look. And my aunt (who got married at 60) was just as radiant as brides in their 20s. No creams can give you that look–it just comes with pure happiness. You have nothing to worry about, and I look forward to checking out your wedding day pics when the day comes about!
    P.S. And my finance has more grey hair than me, so comparitively speaking………. just saying……

  2. Guest Icon Guest
    sweet_melissa81 from TK, Guest @ 4:19 pm

    I just turned 30 this year and I have been freaking about having good skin and hair for my wedding. In general, I’ve always been particularly fussy about my skin and face, so buying tons of beauty products is completely normal in my world at any age. LOL

    Like you I have never really considered myself “old” because I have always felt “young”, but reading the blogs and being on the forums I do feel like an older bride.

    My parents have never really tried to push me or say anything relating to the fact that I’m getting old or I need to hurry and find someone to settle down with, but my extended family has made jokes since I was 25 years old about getting old and needing to settle down. I never wanted to settle for something or someone unlsess I was absolutely sure and that feeling didn’t come until I met my fiance and that’s why I’m an older bride.

    I feel like 30 is the right age for me. I’ve lived a full life in my twenties and am finally starting to figure myself out. I am way more sure of myself at 30 years old then I was in my early twenties. For me, this the right time.

  3. Member
    stammie16 1222 posts, Bumble bee @ 5:11 pm

    This website sometimes makes me feel a bit older. I just turned 30 and I see so many young bees! but looking through the magazines I never felt “old.” I do agree that people up north seem to marry older. And how nice that you get asked what year you are – I’d take it as a compliment.

  4. Guest Icon Guest
    Miss Piggy, Guest @ 7:11 pm

    I feel exactly the same way – so don’t feel alone! I’m so excited to be engaged, but I’m a little worried about not looking beautiful in the photos. (I’m turning 33 this month and getting married in September.) I think everyone who has commented is right, though – the happiness and love will all shine through our eyes and our smile, and we will both be gorgeous on the day. :)

  5. Guest Icon Guest
    Heather, Guest @ 8:08 am

    Miss Mink, this post hit home for me! I’m “only” 30 and getting married next week….but even 30 feels old when you compare yourselves to all the fresh-faced brides out there. I didn’t actually feel old until I had my first makeup trial, and she used airbrushed makeup — it made me look 10 years older! Seriously, it sunk into all my wrinkles and I looked like an old lizard. I cried….but then I read up on airbrush and it’s not good for wrinkles (ugh, am I that old already?) and dry skin. So I found a lovely makeup artist who does traditional foundation and made me look beautiful!! Now I’m not so worried about my age anymore, but I definitely had self-doubt early on. Good luck!! 30-something brides rock :)

  6. Member
    Future Army Wife 2213 posts, Buzzing bee @ 10:18 pm

    I’m 23, and I keep getting the “Are you sure you’re ready / old enough?” responses. Geez louise, I’m not 15. I’m an adult. And more power to you! I love your blog posts (even though you’re in the wrong city in VA, haha).

  7. Member
    Frog E. 735 posts, Busy bee @ 7:53 am

    Honey, there are women on these boards who have moms or FMILs my age (I’m 43). And I did feel a bit silly filling out a questionnaire for a makeup artist the other day and saying my main concern about my wedding day makeup/skills I was looking for in a makeup artist was someone who had experience with working with older skin. But there’s not much we can do about it, can we? And at least I live in NYC, where it’s not all that unusual…

  8. Member
    MrsKeAloha 1044 posts, Bumble bee @ 7:56 am

    I understand how you feel. I will be 33 when we get married, I never thought about my age until planning this wedding, it not just looking in the mirror but also the guests, my grandparents are 10 years older than when they smiled big for the camera as they were escorted to their seats at my brothers wedding.

  9. Member
    mtnhoney 1311 posts, Bumble bee @ 2:31 pm

    You and I are in the same boat, sister! Engaged last summer, at 33, and I’m not 34 and my wedding is a little less than 7 months away.

    I haven’t felt self conscious about it (yet) since I still get asked for ID and anyone new that I meet never believes I’m in my 30′s. My mother also wears her age well, and has never worn make up or done the wrinkle cream thing (well, that’s not entirely true, since she makes her own lotions).

    There’s a thread in the 30-somthing brides forum about all the great things about getting married later. I wasn’t ready in my 20′s, and I feel not only ready to make this decision for life, but I’m with the right person to do it with.

    I hope you let this self doubt pass, Mink. You are beautiful just the way you are and exactly where you should be in life!

  10. Member
    LaughLines 346 posts, Helper bee @ 5:29 pm

    How did I miss this post initially – age has been on my mind all week! I’m 44 (!) and do not feel “old” in every day life. But I was attending a bridal expo this weekend and was feeling anxious at being so much older than the other brides that would be there.
    Happily, though, all went well, except for an awkward moment when registering – “are you family and friends?” “umm, no, I’m the bride…” But statistically I’m more likely to be a MOB than bride, so she was right on! The vendors were great and the day made me even more excited about our wedding.

    I’m aware of my age (I debated the using the name”Crow’s Feet” for the site but”LaughLines” seemed a bit more positive!) And yes, sometimes Weddingbee does make me more aware of my age. But overall I find it a great place to be – there are still many issues I have in common with brides of any age!

  11. Member
    Missido 813 posts, Busy bee @ 11:07 am

    I did feel like this when we first got engaged. I’m not sure why. Like you said, a lot of brides are in their 30s and 40s nowadays.

    I even had anxiety over my decision to have 5 bridesmaids :( FI (kinda like Mr. Mink) thought I was being very silly.

    At 34, I will have a few lines too. It’s too bad there are not more 30 and 40 y old brides in magazine, blogs, etc.

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