DEAR ABBY: I'm writing in response to your reply to the gal in her 20s who looks like she's 14 or 15. Will makeup help her with her problem? Maybe. But it won't make her look older. There are some women who will always look young. I'm 41 and look like I'm in my early 30s, and could pass for my 20s if I dressed the part.
Tell her to relax and enjoy her youthful look. It may seem like a problem right now, but when she's in her 40s and her counterparts are starting to show their age, she will still have young guys flirting with her because they think she's in their age bracket. She won't have to wear makeup to cover the wrinkles, and people will tell her she never ages. What a compliment! -- WENDY IN GODFREY, ILL.
DEAR WENDY: I'm sure the young woman will be grateful for your pep talk. You might be interested in reading what other youthful-appearing readers offered on the subject:
DEAR ABBY: I had to chuckle when I read "No Longer a Freshman's" letter. Your advice was right on, although some people address others as "Sweetie," or "Dearie" as a term of endearment. I certainly take it that way. Regardless of my accomplishments in life and respect from everyone with whom I have come in contact all these years, it's nice to know that part of me exudes a "sweetness," while still being the strong, confident woman I am. -- FOREVER A SWEETIE, LUDLOW, MASS.
DEAR ABBY: I'm in my mid-30s and still get carded for X-rated movies, so I can relate to the problem. My advice:
Don't waste your money on hairstylists or makeup. The hair won't change her looks, and makeup is designed to emphasize them. Trust me; I tried for a dozen years. (I avoid pigtails, though.) At work, avoid greetings like "Hi" and "Hello" and introduce yourself with your title and last name. (Example: "Good afternoon, I'm Ms. Doe. How may I help you?")
At social events, introduce yourself by your first and last names. (Example: "I'm Jane Doe. Pleased to meet you.") Mind your mannerisms. Stand up straight, look people in the eye, give a firm handshake and enunciate when you speak. If it's not someone you'll be dealing with regularly, or professionally, ignore the person's comments. It's not worth your time. And if all else fails, look the person straight in the eye, flash a brilliant smile and say, "You do realize I am ( ) years old?" -- REBECCA IN LOVELAND, COLO.
DEAR ABBY: You advised that young woman to consult a hairdresser, a makeup artist, and to choose more conservative, no-nonsense business attire in the workplace. An image consultant from the Association of Image Consultants International would be the ideal person to facilitate this woman's quest for success in the business world. Such a consultant can coordinate, guide and recommend the right hairdresser, makeup artist, and the best choice in wardrobe that will enhance the wearer.
The Association of Image Consultants International offers consultants who are trained, experienced and competent in the techniques of personal style. She can find one of these talented professionals by visiting www.aici.org. -- DEBRA LINDQUIST