Over the last week there has been a lot of media coverage of Jennifer Lopez and Shakira’s half time performance at the Super Bowl last Sunday. I thought it was a great celebration of the work of two legendary Latina pop stars. However, much of the commentary was on their age, appearance and the ‘sexiness’ of the show. I do wonder if the performers were male, would there have been quite so much focus on age and appropriateness of the choreography and costumes.
Anyway, what does fifty something look like? Maybe like J Lo, maybe not. So called ‘middle age’ looks like whatever you want it to. There are obviously pressures to conform to prevailing beauty standards; cultural expectations of what a woman should look like at a certain age as well as a whole lot of ‘fashion over fifty’ advice out there. I say rock your waist length hair, or your pixie crop; dye your hair pink or celebrate your silvery crown; pole dance or play golf; wear that mini skirt and high heels or dress as modestly as you like. Whatever it is, do you. Do whatever feels authentic and comfortable, and works for you and your life.
Sometimes I seek the reassurance of one of my sons that I don’t look ridiculous in particularly youthful outfit: they and only ever say, “Mum, you look great”. Am I the only person who does this kind of thing? Why should I worry whether other people think I look age-inappropriate? Why do I care what other people think? There is an old English idiom “mutton dressed as lamb”: ridiculous really, as so many things in life improve with age!