Getting older crosses my mind every single day. It interrupts my thoughts constantly with internal chatter like, “You’re too old for that” and “That’s not age-appropriate.” And, with a 24-year old daughter close at hand to remind me, it can be a difficult mantra to shake.
I used to think that between 45-50 women received notice, like certified mail, that it was de rigueur to make adjustments to their wardrobes. Throw out the cute and bring in the dowdy. Several years ago, I commented on how awesome a 42-year old woman looked in her faded jeans, white t-shirt, leather jacket, and leather boots. She responded, “I can’t wear things like this much longer so I gotta take advantage of it while I can.” I asked her “Why?” and she said, “Well, after 45, I need to dress my age.”
Really? Who said? Some fashion “experts” do. Recently, I came across several articles that listed fashion mistakes that make women look old. They ranged from things like, wearing too dark lipstick, putting on super thick mascara, using too natural foundation and too shimmery eye shadow, sporting skirts above the knee, wearing tweed, to putting on those “mom jeans.” I could blow most of them off but then, I saw the worst offender: wearing black. I had read enough.
First, black looks awesome. It is always appropriate. It can be dressed up or dressed down. You can eat anything, including crawfish, in black and still look clean. It hides wrinkles and goes with everything. Most importantly, black is timeless which makes it ageless. So, there. But, what I had heard and read made me think about my fashion style and why I wore what I did.
I wear clothes that fit well. I get my dress clothes altered but you can find me in workout clothes most of the time. I run and lift. I eat well and take quality supplements. As a result, I have a trim waist that I have worked my butt off to get. I have broad shoulders that are strong from weight lifting (which I took up at age 46), and I jog so my legs still have a little more muscle than cellulite. My clothing choices reflect the work I have put into maintaining my health and I am proud of it. There was no way I was going to trade in my running pants for sweats; my workout tops for baggy t-shirts. No way.
My skirts, dresses, and pants usually have a little stretch in them and conform to my curves. I love wearing black. My favorite ensemble is a pencil skirt right to my knees and a short-waisted sweater with ¾ length sleeves. My eyeliner frames my green eyes, the windows to my soul. My matte lipstick is a color that “goes with everything” and when I feel like it, I go ahead and add a dash of shimmer on my eyelids. I feel like a goddess when I get dressed. I feel beautiful. Top 10 Mistakes, you can take a hike.
I have discovered that true, authentic “fashion” isn’t built around color, length, or fabric. It has nothing to do with age, skin color, or hairstyle. Fashion ignores the height of your heels and, just for the record, beehive hairdos will NEVER go out of style. Red lipstick always has a place on your lips and a little dab perfume here and there will forever be intoxicating.
With that said, I’ve started my own fashion trend. It’s call “Confidence.” Wear whatever you want and wear it as long as you want. Accessorize with some confidence, a smile, and a killer walk and you’re a timeless, fashionista. Seriously, no one can argue with that kind of style. Fashion isn’t an age thing, girls. It’s all attitude.
Oh, and just in case you weren’t paying attention to trends, you know those “mom jeans,” those “high-waist” pants that “make you look old?” Last time I checked – like a week ago – they were a talked-about fashion trend of 2016. I bought a pair – a black pair – at the place my 24-year old daughter loves to shop.
I can’t wait to wear them.