Looking Your Best Is Always the Right Choice

11/22/2010 12:48 pm ET | Updated May 25, 2011
  • Louis Licari Beauty expert, Contributing Editor, 'Today Show'

From the very beginning of my career, I have been fortunate enough to work with many of the world's best and most well-known actors. It is my job to help them create the illusion of the character they are portraying. I have had to make these famous faces look older as well younger. I've been lucky enough to help age Robert De Niro and AL Pacino. I am often asked to help actualize the image of a person who is pale and sickly as well as creating the illusion of a character who is full of vim and vigor. Sometimes I must effect a well-manicured and elegant persona. Later in the film, the actor might have to appear down and out. I do my small part to help the actor become the character through the use of hair color. This, along with a team of gifted makeup artists, hairdressers and clothing stylists, helps morph the actor into character. These assignments have often been the most challenging, rewarding and creative part of my career.

Besides temporarily changing their look to create a character for a role, I have watched many actors continually make revisions in their actual appearance. These changes can occur with the use of fillers, botox, plastic surgery and, of course, hair color. This is often an attempt to look more beautiful and to turn back time. When executed by doctors with a great aesthetic sense and skill, this metamorphosis can work. The end result is a better looking person. Unfortunately, looking prettier or younger doesn't always guarantee extending an actor's career. Think about the actors who have done nothing but perhaps the most minimal procedures. They are often the actors with the most extensive and prolonged careers. Actors who look their age work. Actors who look like they are in an altered state become more difficult to cast and all but disappear. I don't think it's necessary to single anyone out or mention any names. This list is all too obvious and would rub salt in some very open wounds. Working actors look age appropriate. Think about the iconic actors of our time who seem to have infinite careers. Susan Sarandon, Meryl Streep and Helen Mirren are all aging gracefully. They continue to have prolific film and theater careers. Actors who have chosen the perpetual youth and beauty route slowly slip off our radar except for the occasional role or paparazzi photos that often leave us guessing what procedures they've had instead of focusing on their most recent (if any) work.

I am not in any way denouncing dermatology or plastic surgery. I strongly believe in the importance of always looking your best. When executed well and appropriately, these aesthetic procedures are extremely successful, alluring, and often undetectable.

Looking your best is always the right choice, whether you are an actor or a civilian. Once you're not in your 20s, 30s or even your 40s, you must be realistic about your appearance. You can look incredibly beautiful and vivacious, but it is essential to realize you will never look the same as a person who is 10 years younger than you are.

By the way, this is the perfect time to change or your hair color and haircut. Doing this can totally take the focus off any other procedures you might have had. Most likely people will comment on your new style and never even consider that you may have had any other cosmetic procedures. Why not keep them guessing?