Ageless is an adjective describing something or someone whose age cannot be defined or is nonexistent.

Agelessness can be attributed to people whose physical characteristics do not match their age. Some use cosmetics to attempt to diminish the effects of age. This use sometimes creates conflicting age indicators (for example, red hair belonging to a wrinkled face), making age determination difficult.

Ageless celebrities

Agelessness is also something with which many Hollywood celebrities have been known to strive for, sometimes undergoing cosmetic surgery to attain it. Demi Moore, Jamie Lee Curtis, and Madonna are particularly known for their efforts to appear 'forever young'. Botox, silicone transplants, tummy tucks, facelifts, and nosejobs are examples of 'age-removing' surgeries. Sooner or later, however, the effects of the passing years do start to show on the body as it endures wear and tear. Scientists across the world are also working on finding the reason of aging and have come out with various theories, but still have a long way to go before this phenomenon is fully understood and controlled.

Television host Dick Clark has been described as "America's Oldest Teenager." Many viewers have hardly perceived his having aged since the 1960s, despite being born in 1929. The appearance of Andy Milonakis is also ambiguous since he suffers from a hormone disorder, allowing him to perform the role of a young teenager in his shows. Similarly, the Castrati singers of the Renaissance also aged differently than other men due to the lack of testosterone and other hormones, which take a toll on appearance and stature. Specifically, Alessandro Moreschi (1858-1922) was described as having no facial hair and a young voice and appearance. Generally, a blank, featureless face can also be described as ageless.

Suzanne Somers (born 1946), the well-known American actress, author and businesswoman, attributes her youthful (or ageless) appearance to the use of bioidentical hormone replacement therapy. Her 2006 book Ageless continues the theme of her 2004 book The Sexy Years that restoring hormones (especially sex hormones) to youthful levels is the key to agelessness.

Media and fiction

Perhaps the best-known examples of ageless beings are cartoon characters. Cartoons, for technical and commercial reasons, are intended to live in an eternal present, a timeless universe without any change. Archie, for example, has been the same teenager since the 1950's. See also Sliding timescale; unageing.

Sometimes agelessness (as well as sexlessness) is a way to make a character less human and less definable by giving that character traits that suit many ages. For example, SpongeBob SquarePants behaves like a kid with his friend Patrick Star, wears a private school uniform, studies boating, and has a serious career at the Krusty Krab.

Superhero characters are also ageless, including Superman, Wonder Woman, X-men Wolverine and the villian Mystique: often because their powers include magical healing or cellular regeneration. Unlike many cartoon characters, their lives change (relations with other characters, marriage, kids, etc.) while their ages remain the same through the 50-70 years of their crime-fighting lives. Many of them have been in action from World War II through the present (or even into the future).

James Bond is probably the best-known realistic ageless character. Some of his allies and friends, including M, Q, Miss Moneypenny, Bill Tanner and Felix Leiter also do not age throughout both the novel and film series, which began in 1953 and 1962 respectively. Ian Fleming, the creator of Bond, was known to tinker with details of Bond's early life and change dates to ensure Bond was the appropriate age for the service. When the novel series was revived in the 1980s by author John Gardner, Bond and his allies were transported to the decade without aging, although Bond still recalls his earlier adventures from the 1950s and 1960s. (The timeframe in which they happened in respect to Gardner's series is omitted.) Researchers of Ian Fleming and James Bond have come to the conclusion that the Bond of Fleming's novels was born between 1920 and 1924. In 2005, Ian Fleming Publications, the publishers of the James Bond novels, began a series of novels referred to as the Young Bond series which features James Bond as a teenager in the 1930s. For the series, Bond was given the birth year of 1920.

The Simpsons has ageless characters, with Bart, Lisa and other characters' ages not changing over the more than eighteen year history of the show. The cartoon format makes it possible to do this.

Ageless beings
Tolkien's Elves are a good example of creatures who are factually ageless. They are not subject to entropy and decay, unlike Men and the rest of the mortal world. Tolkien describes his elves as young, yet with some 'wisdom' and experience in their eyes and behaviour; therefore appearance prevents the impression of perceiving them as young persons.

In another sense, however, Tolkien has stated that Elves do change and age - not by growing old, but by changing other features in their appearance. The strange combination of youth and overwhelming maturity makes the age of an Elf undefinable and alien by mortal standards. Elves are also sometimes depicted as androgynous, paralleling to angelic beings.

The Aes Sedai of Robert Jordan's Wheel of Time series are described as ageless as well; a feature of their magical abilities extends life and makes their age difficult to place even with the evidence of white hair or physical frailty.

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Author's Bio: 

This definition is part of a series that covers the topic of Anti-Aging. The Official Guide to Anti-Aging is Dr. Michael Brickey. America’s preeminent Anti-Aging Psychologist, Dr. Brickey helps people think, feel, look, and be more youthful by learning their Anti-Aging ABCs™ – the Attitudes, Beliefs, and Coping Skills for living longer, healthier, and happier. He is an ABPP Board Certified Psychologist, a Fellow of the American Psychological Association, and is an NLP Master Practitioner. His life coaching was featured in six issues of Let’s Live magazine. His consulting helps businesses effect more youthful, healthier, happier employees. His seminars and keynotes get people to adopt ABCs and lock in the beliefs for lifelong benefits.


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