The Hitman’s Wife’s Bodyguard star said that "not a lot of people" talk about the effects of menopause

By Julie Mazziotta
June 23, 2021 09:00 AM
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Salma Hayek bikini
Salma Hayek
| Credit: Salma Hayek/Instagram

When Salma Hayek first went to the doctor about starting to see signs of menopause, she was shocked by the potential symptoms they listed off.

"The questions were terrifying," the 54-year-old actress said on the latest episode of Red Table Talk. "They were asking me things like, 'Are your ears growing and there's hair growing out of them? Are you growing a mustache and a beard? Are you easily irritable? Are you crying for no reason? Are you gaining a lot of weight really fast that doesn't go away no matter what you do? Are you shrinking?' And then they ask you, 'Is your vagina dry?' "

But the symptom that surprised Hayek the most once she started going through menopause was one they hadn't mentioned — that her breasts would get larger.

"The boobs grow a lot," she said. "For some women they get smaller. But there are some women that when you gain weight, your boobs grow, and other women that when you have children and you breastfeed your boobs grow and they don't go back down, and then in some of the cases when you are in menopause they grow again. And I just happen to be one of those women where it happened in every, single step!"

Hayek said that over the years, as her weight fluctuated through her pregnancy and now menopause, people have thought that she had plastic surgery.

"A lot of people said that I had breast augmentation; I don't blame them! My boobs were smaller! So was the rest of my body," she said. "But they have just kept growing. Many, many sizes. And my back has been really suffering from it. And not a lot of people talk about this."

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The Hitman's Wife's Bodyguard star said that she's also experienced mood swings and hot flashes over the last few years.

"I have gone through those periods, I still kind of am, but you got to notice those moments and take a deep breath and kind of say, 'Okay, it'll pass. You got to hold it together,' " she said. "And the hot flashes aren't fun."

But Hayek emphasized that aging is not a problem.

"There's no expiration dates for women. That has to go," she said. "Because you can kick ass at any age. You can hold your own at any age, you can dream at any age, you can be romantic at age. We have the right to be loved for who we are at the place that we are. We're not just here to make babies, we're not just here to baby the man. We're not just here to service everything and everyone around us and then when the kids go away … it's almost like expiration date for you as a woman. It's a misunderstanding that has been going around for centuries."

Hayek's full episode of Red Table Talk airs on Wednesday, June 23 at 12 p.m. ET, 9 a.m. PT.