December 28, 2016 04:28 PM

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Gwyneth Paltrow has spent most of her life in the public eye — and under a microscope — but when the 44-year-old actress looks at herself in the mirror, she’s not the least bit phased by any tell-tale signs of aging. 

“Of course I have wrinkles [and] gray hair. But I genuinely love it. This is who I am,” Paltrow tells PeopleStyle. 

And as she celebrates the release of her beloved lifestyle empire goop’s first beauty book, Goop Clean Beauty, not only could bona fide green beauty guru and mom of two care less about a few lines — she’s relishing the years of real-life experience that came with them. “I have been through incredible ups and downs,” she added, “and I feel so blessed that I have the wrinkles to tell the story.”

For the actress, who declared herself “a mess” in her 20s, being a “grown woman” has never felt better. 

“I feel good about [it]. I think it’s incredibly sexy. … And I wouldn’t want to erase years off my face or to travel back in time for anything.”

She credits her happiness to the confidence that comes with simply growing older. 

“I really believe that when a woman turns 40, she gets a software upgrade. I have never been happier,” says the star, who recently celebrated her birthday with a makeup-free selfie.

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And while she’s still has a few insecurities, (“I am kind of a gangly girl, but it was a lot worst when I was a teenager,” she admits), she’s come to embrace every inch of her 5’ 9” – frame. 

Her secret to self-confidence? She says, “part of that is just accepting where you are in time and space.”

For more from Paltrow pick up the latest issue of PEOPLE, on newsstands now.

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