"[Bateman] studies the topic of women and aging in her new book Face: One Square Foot of Skin." —People
"The actor and author of Face: One Square Foot of Skin wants to push back against the ubiquity of plastic surgery." —Vanity Fair
"Through a selection of short stories, [Bateman] examines just how complicated it is for women to get older, both in and out of the spotlight." —Glamour
"[Bateman is] putting an inspiring spin on aging by celebrating her face just as it is. Leaving us with an inspired State of Mind!" —Maria Schriver's Sunday Paper
"Bateman asks, what if we just rejected the idea that older faces need fixing. What if we ignored all the clanging bells that remind women every day on every platform that we are in some kind of endless battle with aging." —TIME
"[Bateman] argues that American society has long equated the signs of aging on a woman's face with unattractiveness. But she also asserts that women need not participate in such prejudice by accepting and internalizing it." —AARP
"Face: One Square Foot of Skin [is] a creative nonfiction tome about the ways society responds to women as they age . . . [Bateman] said she was compelled to take a deeper look at the unfair expectations placed on women, particularly women in the public eye like her, as they grow older." —Hollywood Reporter
"Right on, Justine Bateman. Thanks for helping us embrace our faces just as they are." —Upworthy
"Brave, brilliant, and unflinchingly honest, Justine is that writer you trust because she goes after every subject with a warrior's focus, and throws herself to the lions while she's at it. It doesn't hurt that she's a gorgeous woman who hasn't tried to erase an ounce of history from her face. I love the way she thinks, and am amazed at the many sublayers she manages to excavate while everyone else is scratching the surface." —Mary-Louise Parker, author of Dear Mr. You
"[Bateman] recounts her own experiences and interviews more than 20 other individuals to present a series of fictional vignettes that argue that women's aging faces should be viewed as beautiful—the proof of complex lives well lived." —Alta Journal
"A much-needed viewpoint on an important and seemingly universal issue." —Manhattan Book Review
An in-depth examination of “why we should ever find an older face ‘horrible’ to begin with…and feel compelled to ‘fix’ it.”
In Fame (2018), Bateman deconstructed the flimsy edifice of celebrity. In this equally fiery and potent follow-up, she does the same for our notions of what constitutes a beautiful face. “When I was a smooth-skinned and plump-faced teenager,” she writes at the beginning of the book, “I really wanted to look like the older European actresses I saw in the Italian and French films of the 1960s and ’70s.” Examining her own experiences with how society viewed her as she moved from child actor to adult, she recounts how her pride and self-esteem faltered when she received public backlash about her appearance. She describes the book as “by no means an exhaustive exploration of “older women’s faces” in our current society, but rather a series of snapshots that focus on the reasons for the negative attitudes regarding those faces.” Instead, the book is a series of “47 short stories in which I have incorporated my experiences and feelings on the topic, and those of about 25 people I interviewed.” Occasionally disjointed, the narrative is most impressive in the aggregate, as women at all stages of life acknowledge and sometimes transcend societal views about women’s faces. By exploring the issue via multiple points of view, Bateman is able to show “many of the reasons for the negative attitudes regarding those faces” as well as the hypocrisy and double standards involved in such attitudes, especially in contrast with how aging men are often considered. Combining the author’s intensely personal stories with relevant examples from the culture at large, the book is heartbreaking and hopeful, infuriating and triumphant.
An engrossing look at an issue that continues to be problematic for millions of women every day.