Saturday, 29 May 2021

Dear ladies, please just disappear.

According to a British survey carried out among 2.000 women(!) aged 18 to 65 by Retire Savvy and commissioned by Diet Chef, women believe miniskirts would be a "no-no" for anyone aged 35 or more. Once you hit 36, text talk is no longer acceptable, 38, no tattoo, 39, no infamous night-club hotspots, 40, no see-through chiffon blouse, no holidays without family or partner, 41, no longer watching reality TV, 42, don't wear a football shirt, 44, no trainers (unless for sport), no discos, 45, no leggings, no Ugg boots, no more festivals, 47, no knee high boots, no bikini, no skinny jeans, no twitter, 49, delete your facebook profile, 51, no high heels, 51, no ponytail, 52, no longer staying out past midnight, 53, no long hair, 61, no swimsuit (via and via).

One in ten bought clothes and soon took them back to the shop fearing it was "too young" for them, 5% said they had been warned by a shop assistant the item was not right for their age. Women also often hear warning from friends and family (via and via and via).

Bollocks. After 43 you should walk past the queues of nightclubs, shoulders back, chest out – tits and teeth. Stride up to the bouncer and shake his hand. (...) And I couldn’t give a toss what people think. Although my grandson told me I was too old to wear Adidas Stan Smiths, while two Romanians stopped me in the toilets to shake my hand because I‘m 'DFC' – dead fucking cool. Confidentials's Gordo

In an article, published in The Guardian, Emma Soames claims that women lose their instinct for knowing what suits them as they get older. I think we should be more careful with these ideas and reflect on where they come from and what impact they have before selling them as facts. On the contrary, perhaps style is something that needs time to develop and people dress better the older they get. And, surely, there is one major issue Ms Soames is not seeing: People are judged mildly, if at all, for wearing "not suitable" clothes when young and judged more harshly when older. Since women's "fashion antennae just shrivel with age", she continues, they need "some sartorial rules". The first one: You need to dress "appropriately", avoid the ultra feminine and the very short, dress classically (via). 

No long hair, no high heels, no Ibiza, no facebook, no swimsuit... The message? Don't look like a woman, don't be active, don't have fun, don't go out. Just hide. Don't irritate with your presence. You no longer have a gender, you are either female or old. Dress in an age-appropriate manner and act your age by being invisible. That is the only way to age gracefully, by disappearing. We definitely still have a long way to go when it comes to raising awareness about the absurdities of internalised ageism.

photograph by Leon Levinstein via