I’ve never had an issue with the way that I dress. In fact I’ve always been conscious of choosing the right clothing for my body type, as its important to portray your physique in a flattering light. When I entered my forties I didn’t think it was necessary to change my style of dress, because everything I’d worn thus this far had looked good on me.
In the summer of 2015 my friend had come to Paris to visit me, along with her eleven year old daughter in tow. One afternoon on one of our many shopping expeditions, her daughter turned to me and said, “Aunty, you look like your eighteen!”
I was floored. An eleven year old just told me (a then forty year old) that I looked eighteen. I knew straight away that she was referring to the way I was dressed. I immediately looked at my friend who was dressed in drab colors like somebody’s grandmother, and thought to myself “this could never be me.”
When I think about it, every fashion ad (or any ad period) that markets to women over forty, always shows an older women conservatively and badly dressed. If I walk into a shop and see women in my age group I immediately turn around and leave, because the fashion they’re gravitating towards isn’t in my league. I have always shopped in stores that market a “youthful image”.
So is “age appropriate” fashion a thing of the past? Is there a certain dress code that women over forty must prescribe to?
I definitely think that in today’s world women do not only look younger, but they are thinking and acting younger. Gone are the days that being forty was a death sentence! Now you hear people say, “forties are the new thirties.”
But does it really matter what you wear? I personally believe that as long as the clothing looks good on you, and you have the physique to carry it then by all means go ahead. Youth is a feeling, and fashion is an expression of that feeling. So if you’re forty nine and still want to wear that leopard coat, then wear it!
There have been so many societal limitations put on women in midlife. I think that fashion shouldn’t be one of them. Fashion is the freedom to creatively express your inner self. And as women, if we can no longer express our inner selves then we die.
Wearing whatever you want is a freedom of expression. I encourage all women over forty to live their best lives. Continue to create, express, grow…and be 100% fashionably you!
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