From Our Readers At 26 – Embracing Sparkly Nailpolish and Braids From Our Readers

I had briefly mentioned in an earlier blogpost my sudden shock and realization that I had turned 26. This 1/3 – life crisis is usually met by rolling eyes from my peers who are older than me (even though I am more than certain that you were feeling exactly what I am feeling at this age). Here’s the thing. I’ve been thinking a lot about what it means to turn 26 and although every part of my being wants to freak out and/or cling on to my youth in some last-ditch effort to be in my early twenties, I think I’m actually starting to embrace the path to 30.

There are moments that hurt, like when you walk into Forever21 and you look around at their clientele and realize that you actually are far from 21 now, or when loads of girls at the bar have feathers in their hair and you caught on to the trend when it was becoming “lame” and overdone. Those moments hurt. I used to hear about movie stars and musicians age 26 and thought to myself “Oh, by that age I’ll be _______” (fill in the blank).

So here’s the thing. Being young kind of sucked. Granted it was fun but I was riddled with insecurities. I never let myself be me. I tried so hard to be the person I thought I should be. My clothes were conservative and boring. Black, grey and navy were my staple colors. I shield away from any kind of sillyness to save face and look “cool.” I wore board shorts and tank tops over my bathing suit and I was always trying to lose that extra 5 pounds before I bought the jeans that would give me the confidence I needed for whatever.

Basically, I’m 26 and although it isn’t a monumental age celebrated by any culture I know of, it’s pretty cool to be an adult. I kind of don’t care anymore. If I want to do something I do it even if it’s trendy. I braid my hair. I shop at Target like every other girl. I don’t care if I just saw ten girls with the same hairstyle, if I want it I’ll get it. I like being happy. I’m not a lost soul trying to find my way anymore (not that I ever was but I damn well thought I was). It’s cool to let yourself be happy. And weirdly enough at 26 it isn’t my professional position, how thin I am or any other artificial idea I was striving for before, but being able to apply sparkly nail polish and not be afraid of what anyone else thinks or in that case what I think about myself.

You can read more from Simi Sardana on her blog.

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  1. I turned 28 this year and with my bff freaking out about turning 30 I realized some things. 1. age really doesn’t matter. Yeah we might be getting older but no one seems to notice. People still think I’m 23 and she is younger. ( I got 15 the other day bit I think that lady was delusional). 2. ( and I love that you mentioned this) I have no problem copying your style. You look great! And I want to also. Remember copying is the highest form of flattery, so get off my back for biting your stlye. I share my style also. 3. I don’t care if that trend was so summer 2009, I’m still rocking it because I still look good in it.

  2. Thanks for this article celebrating 26! It’s about time. On my 26th birthday, I too had a mini-freak attack at the thought of officially being in my late 20′s. But, like you, I have found that with age comes more confidence (or maybe just more I-don’t-give-a-darn) and exceitement for the future. 18yr old me saw me being super cool and mature by this age, possibly married with an established career, yadda yadda yadda….But, I’m happy that life turned out to be exactly what I needed rather than what I thought I wanted. I thank the Big Man for that. Looking forward to 27 because, well, looking forward certainly beats looking back. Cheers!

  3. I totally agree. I am 26 too, and by the time my Mom was 26 she had a husband & 3 kids. I used to think I would be a grown-up by this age – but instead I am still trying to master the art of skateboarding while playing guitar. I am beyond grateful that I grew past being a teenager, and I am actually quite excited to grow older. With every year I seem to learn more about who I am, and I love that. Thanks for the great post! xxx

  4. I’m 26 and I’m wearing sparkly nail polish right this moment. When I was deciding what to wear to my work Christmas party I wasn’t sure whether to go with “the pineapple dress”, “the horse dress” or “the cat dress”. As much as 26 is still young and insecure, I’m glad to be going in a direction where I can own who I am and what I like and not give a damn what anyone thinks about it.

  5. I’m turning 26 in a few months (March) and I’m nervous about it… its late twenties…OFFICIALLY… well on my way to 30. 25 has been a fantastic year… i’ve come a long way in the last year – professionally as if everything i’ve worked towards has some what come together in the last 6 months… but still 26 …. eeekkkk!! idk if i like that sound of that

  6. @ Sophia: Oh, so you must still be 25 then.

  7. If you just turned 26 you need to stop being such an asshole. 26 is the cutoff point for that.

  8. i’m 27 and I over use sparkley nail polish. Nothing wrong with that!

  9. This sounds so much like me! Yay for being 26!

  10. I h agree with this except fot the part were you found your way. I’m 24 and I’m freaking the eff out. But for the rest of it I feel reflected.