Beauty

Hello, My Age Is: 65

Gerda Endemann (goop’s Resident MIT PhD) on Loving Your Age, Eating Well, and an Exfoliation Wardrobe

Gerda Endemann | senior director of science and research at goop

Gerda Endemann doesn’t love the frequent “You don’t look your age!” comments she gets (jaws dropped when she casually mentioned in a Zoom meeting that she was turning sixty-five over the weekend). “I think I look my age, and that’s great,” says goop’s senior director of science and research. “I’m fine with who I am.” We had to get her full routine—great food, exercise, skin care, and lots of time outside—because she’s very clearly doing something right.

1

Diet makes a real difference

How Endemann looks and feels so good at sixty-five involves many factors, but food and nutrition definitely play a large part in her life and career: “I came from a family of nutrition obsessives,” she says. “There was no question about what I’d major in in college. I grew up eating organic veggies and fruits that my mother grew and raw honey and fertile eggs that my dad traded vitamins for. My mother distilled water for us to drink (we had a still in the kitchen!) and stored the water in glass, not plastic. I didn’t fully appreciate my parents’ wisdom when I was young, but I do now.”

Endemann has focused on nearly every aspect of nutrition over the course of her career, from research in the lab and teaching at Stanford to developing dietary supplements for companies and advising people on diet and supplement regimens. “And I love to cook and to eat,” she says. “Now, researching and writing at goop, I get to try out and research wellness products, which is a lot of fun.”

2

Supplements help

“The only time I’m unhappy with my age is when night sweats wake me up,” says Endemann. “There’s a lot of research on herbs for help during menopause, so I thought I’d try goop’s own product, Madame Ovary , which has some of the best-researched botanicals targeted at hot flashes and mood. I feel incredibly lucky to have found this amazing product. Problem solved! And Madame Ovary does double duty as a solidly formulated multivitamin that I really like in a daily packet.”

3

Skin care gets more and more useful

“To feel good about the way I look, taking some time for skin care is necessary. My skin’s moisturizing needs are intense, and I’m super impressed with the two new GOOPGENES products—for me, they fill the need for something in between a moisture lotion and an oil. The face cream is absolutely perfect: very rich but not too thick, not too thin, not too oily. And it’s hard for me to find a cream without eye-irritating fragrances, but the GOOPGENES one passed the test with flying colors.”

Endemann is a recently reformed tanner. “I didn’t use sunscreen until I came to goop,” she says. “I’ve learned a lot the past two years and feel hopeful about slowing and even reversing the damage I did over the years with too much tanning. I use vitamin C on my hands and face every morning so at least I feel like I’m doing what I can.”

No regrets, however: “It’s probably all for the best, because ten years ago, the clean sunscreen options weren’t great, so I’ve avoided exposing myself to a lot of estrogenic chemicals,” says Endemann. “But now we have wonderful clean sunscreens—I particularly love this one from Babo Botanicals.”

4

Have an exfoliation wardrobe

“I use a few different gentle moisturizing scrubs on my face, alternating GOOPGLOW Microderm, Acure Facial Scrub, and Coco Rose Body Polish—I love this last one for my arms and legs, too,” she says. “Once in a while, I use a GOOPGLOW overnight glycolic acid peel.”

“I’m a fanatic about clean products,” says Endemann. “I may be a scientist, but I don’t have the patience to evaluate all the ingredients in products, so I rely on my local natural foods store, Staff of Life, which has a fantastic selection of skin-care products, and on goop, since our beauty department vets the ingredients in the products we sell.”

5

Sleep is big—and sometimes involves sacrifices

“I’ve always prioritized getting eight to nine hours of sleep, making and eating delicious meals, walking in the woods, yoga, and gardening, because I need all of these to feel good,” Endemann says. “But sleep is the most important, and that has required giving up some things I used to enjoy: no more chocolate or alcohol in the evening.”

6

You can walk and meditate at the same time

“My new passion is walking meditation in the woods,” she says. “I think about how I’m holding my body: Are my neck and shoulders tense and contracted? Am I using my glutes and quads to power my steps? I breathe in oxygen from the trees and breathe out carbon dioxide for them. You don’t need magic mushrooms to feel the oneness of life. It’s easier than meditating sitting still.”

7

Love the age you are

“I really don’t like that comment, ‘You don’t look your age!’ I look my age, and that’s okay,” Endemann says. “When my mother was eighty-five and looked eighty-five, one family member would always say, ‘You look so young,’ and it seemed a little insulting to me. But I don’t have very many grey hairs. Thanks, Mom, for that gene. These days it takes a little more care to feel good about my appearance. The bloom of youth takes you a long way. But I feel like I’m a more beautiful human at sixty-five than I was at twenty-five—I’m less insecure and less self-centered and better able to be a good friend and partner and citizen. When I think about the awful things I did to animals in the name of scientific research, I shudder. In my twenties, it seemed fine to do what all the other scientists were doing. That’s why they recruit boys to be soldiers. Age brings perspective.”

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