41-year-old woman who says she 'stopped ageing' at 20 shares her secrets
If there's one thing that most of us are afraid of (spiders, clowns and dropping a brand new highlighter powder aside), it's ageing. Yes, we fear wrinkles and sagging skin so much so that we're willing to throw money at pricey ointments or commit to grisly treatments like 'penis facials'. Heck, even I at my ripe old age of 24 was convinced to buy the anti-wrinkle serum Kim Kardashian swears by (it was a disaster, btw).
But despite it all, we need to accept that we're all getting older and we will all show evidence of this as time wears on. Unless... you're this lady.
One woman who proved that it is possible to stop time is Shimmi Munshi, who appears to have stopped ageing when she was 20. The 41-year-old mother from Bolton, UK, says she often gets mistaken for her 20-year-old son's girlfriend and that she's still being asked to show ID when buying drinks.
"At the school gates, the other mums would ask if I’d had plastic surgery, or if I had spent a fortune on skin creams and beauty treatments," Shimmi told Metro. But to their dismay – Shimmi's youthful appearance is not thanks to a couple of expensive tricks.
"I’ve always looked young," she revealed. "As my friends began ageing, I seemed to go in the opposite direction, but I’ve no idea why."
She says that she looks more or less the same as when she did at age 20, and seems just as astonished as the rest of us.
"I was a single mum, juggling work and motherhood, and anyone would think the stress might have started to show," she said. "Instead, I seemed to stop ageing."
"I didn’t notice it particularly, but all my friends did. They were all moaning that I’d discovered the secret of eternal youth and they wanted me to share it."
However, she insists there is "no mystery at all to the way I looked" and that she has "no secrets" to share. In fact, her beauty routine is pretty simple and is definitely more on the side of convenience.
"I’d certainly never had cosmetic surgery. And my beauty routine consisted of baby wipes and whatever moisturiser was on special offer in the supermarket!"
That's not to say she doesn't have any kind of self-care routine though.
"I have never spent a lot of money on beauty products though of course, I take care of myself; I drink green tea and I don’t smoke or drink booze," Shimmi says. "I’m a member of the local gym and I drink lots of water."
"But I am no fitness fanatic or beauty queen. In fact, I rarely look in the mirror. I don’t actually think about my looks much at all."
Maybe it's her relaxed attitude that helps her look so youthful – after all, stress is a known culprit for premature signs of ageing. The 41-year-old also says it comes down to genetics. She says both her parents look great in their old age too. But while she may look forward to being a fresh-faced grandmother one day, Shimmi says it can actually be pretty annoying to look so young.
"I’ve been asked for ID buying alcohol so many times and sometimes they just refuse to serve me outright," she says. "It’s worth it though to see the look on the shop assistant’s face when I hand over my ID."
She says that when she's out with her 20-year-old son Ameen, people often assume they are siblings, or even that they are a couple. Shimmi says that on several occasions – including holidays and parents' evenings at school – that people assumed she was too young to be his mother.
"At Ameen’s prom night, people thought we were a couple," she recalled. "It’s very flattering and it made me giggle but it drove him mad."
"Even at parents’ evening at high school, his teacher said to me: 'We really would rather see Ameen’s mum.' She thought I was his sister!"
Over the years, Ameen has learned to deal with the comments. "As a teenager, he didn’t like all the attention," says Shimmi. "He is now 20 and has got used to the constant comments about his mum’s looks."
Well, although it really does come down to genetics most of the time, it seems we can still learn from Shimmi's not-so-secret secrets to stop the process of ageing.