Why you should wear what you want - whatever your age

Earlier this week, Catherine posted a link on Facebook to this article on 24 Things Women Should Stop Wearing After Age 30 (which she herself had found via Patti.) and before I’d even clicked on the link, a rant was starting to form in my head.

Then I actually read it, and although the post itself is from last year, it looks like that rant is going to come out anyway, because the idea that women of “a certain age” should basically become invisible is still very current, and honestly, it makes my blood boil. Particularly this part:

Do 30 year olds even fit into A&F clothes

“Do 30-year-olds even fit into A&F clothes?”

Because, yeah, 30-year-olds are, like, sooooooo old and fat and, like, totally tragic, OMG! How do they, like, even BUY clothes?

This is a joke, right? I’m asking that in all seriousness: I couldn’t find any evidence that the site that published this is supposed to be satirical, but it’s got to at least be some kind of comment-bait, yes? I mean, please tell me there aren’t actually people out there who think that the second a woman hits 30 she instantly triples in size and trots obediently off to find some nice elastic-waisted “slacks” to wear? Are there? Do these people really exist? And if there are, can I be there on their 30 birthdays, to personally take away all of their “young people” clothes and replace them with the shapeless sacks and sensible beige items that befit their new station in life?

Now don’t get me wrong: I don’t shop in A&F (and not JUST because you have to be able to see in the dark to shop in their stores, and I can’t…), and with the notable exception of over-sized sunglasses (Just TRY and stop me wearing them, by the way: I dare you…) I don’t really wear many of the other things on this list either. That’s not because I think I’m “too old”, and that those things are now “forbidden” to me, I hasten to add – it’s because they’re just not my style. If I woke up tomorrow morning as my 18-year-old self, for instance, I wouldn’t think, “Awesome, I can wear mini skirts again!” No, I’d just think, “Seriously? I have to go through my twenties AGAIN? But things were just getting good!”

And this is the thing that seems so unfair to me: the idea that the very age at which you finally start to feel comfortable in your own skin, and to develop a style that’s truly your own, is the same age at which you’re expected to stop having fun with fashion, and just slink off to become appropriately anonymous. Maybe it’s not like that for everyone, but for me my 30s have been the decade in which I’ve felt most confident about my style: the decade in which I finally stopped caring so much about what other people thought of me, and started to just enjoy clothes. It took me a long time to reach that stage, though. I remember when I turned 30, I felt like I needed to change everything about myself: to grow up and start “acting my age” – even although I didn’t really know how to go about it, and still felt about 15-years-old inside my head.

Clothes were a part of that, of course. Up until then, I’d always just bought whatever I liked, without giving much thought to it; now I started questioning everything I owned, wondering if it was “too young” and would make me look like mutton dressed as lamb. I remember once, not long after my 30th birthday, I ordered a dress which hit maybe an inch and half above the knee – not even remotely “mini”, obviously, and the kind of length I wouldn’t have thought twice about wearing when I was 29-and-11-months old. Now that I was 30, however, I wondered if I could “get away” with this dress. I knew it fit me, and I thought it looked fine on me: I looked exactly the same as I had six months earlier, after all, so logically, there was no reason why a dress I’d happily have worn when I was 29 would all-of-a-sudden be inappropriate now that I was 30. But I still wasn’t sure.

I asked Terry… which was a mistake, because Terry has a somewhat stereotypically male view on dress lengths, and doesn’t think there even IS such a thing as “too short”. So I asked my mum… who rolled her eyes and told me not to be stupid, and that I would never be this young ever again, so if I couldn’t wear the things I liked now, I never would. I knew she was right, but I still sent it back: I’d read too many articles with titles like ’24 Things Women Should Stop Wearing After Age 30′, and they’d really done a number on convincing me there were things I just shouldn’t wear now.

I was annoyed, though. At 30, I’d finally found the confidence to break away from the  fashion “rules” that had governed my teens and 20s, and now here I was, being expected to obey a set of new ones – and these rules were ones which defined me entirely by my age, eliminating all possibility of personal style, of experimentation, of fun. According to these rules, I should no longer choose clothes simply because they made me feel good; I should choose them because they made me invisible. At the very moment that the world of fashion had finally opened up to me, the doors were being slammed firmly in my face. I was too old, was the message I was hearing – fashion was only for the young (and for the slim, for the beautiful – more messages designed to limit our choices and keep us all firmly in our place.), and I wasn’t allowed to be part of this world that I’d only just started to really enjoy.

Well, to hell with that, basically: to hell with ALL of that. I hate the idea that only certain people should be “allowed” to wear certain things, just as I hate anything that attempts to define people by their age, or their weight, or the colour of their skin. I might not wear many of the things on this particular list, but that’s purely because they’re not my style – and if I DID want to wear them, no amount of lists like this would convince me not to. I hope the article that sparked this rant doesn’t convince anyone else that there are things they shouldn’t wear either: because when I look back now, I’m not glad that I sent back that dress – I’m just sad that I missed out on wearing something I loved, and I’d hate to see other people convince themselves that they should limit themselves in the same way.

As for me, these days there are definitely some things I won’t wear, and I certainly don’t believe that all things look good on all people. I do, however, believe that the answer to the question “how old is too old to wear X?” will always be, “when you no longer feel good in it, and not a moment before.” I think it’s only good manners to wear clothes that are appropriate for the situation (So I wouldn’t wear jeans to a wedding, say, or hotpants to a business meeting), and that you should always respect dress codes and cultural sensitivities, but as long as you’re doing that, and your clothes aren’t actively offending anyone, then the only person who’s really affected by your choice of outfit is you. When you look at it like that, it seems pretty silly to actively avoid the things you like just because of the date on your birth certificate.

I did eventually get over my own paranoia – but not before I’d missed out on the opportunity to wear a lot of things I know I’d have loved – and isn’t life too short for those kind of regrets? I know it’s definitely too short to avoid wearing graphic tees, or sparkly pants just because they appeared on some silly list: and it’s ALWAYS a good time to wear leopard print shoes. Buy the shoes. Wear the sparkly pants. Don’t listen to people who want to define you entirely by your age – or your weight, or anything else – because one of the great things about being an adult is that YOU get to decide what’s appropriate for YOU.

Oh, and it’s not just “women over 30” who should be allowed to wear whatever the hell they want, by the way – it’s women of ANY age.

71 Comments
  1. I couldn’t agree with you more, Amber.

    As a 30-something woman I’d be a fool if I let others’ opinion get in the way of how I feel about myself. It took me a lot of experimenting and getting over insecurities to be comfortable in my own skin, so no list will deter me from that. What’s next, things you shouldn’t say if you have a high-pitched tone?

    Like you very well said, as long as the clothes fit you, your situation and your surroundings go for whatever pleases you.

    Oh, and it’s always a pleasure reading you 🙂

    1. Exactly! It really annoys me that just at the point where we’re finally starting to get over our insecurities about our shape, appearance, etc, some people want us to acquire a whole set of NEW ones! I feel like one of the compensations of the ageing process should be the ability to wear what we want, at the very least!

      1. This is an amazing blog, Amber! It couldn’t have been written at a better time for me. As a 30 something year old myself, I recently, and I mean as recently as last week, was pondering whether or not I should purchase clothes from now on based on what is considered “appropriate” for my age OR what I love and feel great in. This piece gave me a peace, believe it or not, about my decision to wear whatever the heck I want! 🙂 You’re right. Life is short. It would be a silly regret to look back and think, if only I’d worn that glittery skirt! Great post, Amber!

  2. This is exactly how I feel about it:
    “I do, however, believe that the answer to the question “how old is too old to wear X?” will always be, “when you no longer feel good in it, and not a moment before.””

    And the idea of “24 Things Women Should Stop Wearing After Age 30” can just f*ck right off with itself along with it’s judgmental (female) author. I hope she only owns beige, elasticated clothing and crap fitting jeans. What a load of sh*te.

  3. Totally agree with you, I will wear whatever I want to wear and as I long as I think I look good then everyone else can keep their opinions to themselves.

    I think now at the geriatric age of 36 years and 8 months I dress totally different to the positively conservative way I dressed in my twenties. I am more confident now and will go from a Nirvana sweatshirt one day to a Zara kimomo the next.

    As for A & F, they need some lightbulbs in their stores

  4. YES, a thousand times yes. I hear these kind of talk all the time, also about makeup. If you’re over 30 you shouldn’t be using bold colours or glitter, if you’re under 20 you shouldn’t be using makeup at all. Bullshit. Both makeup and fashion are ways of expressing yourself, and YOU should be the judge of what is right for YOU. As you said, as long as you are appropriate for the situation, I don’t see why you should limit yourself following a bunch of rules set up by god knows who.

  5. It’s just as infuriating when you hear that women over 30 shouldn’t have long hair, when it’s from another woman in her thirties who you think should know better! I know I look a hell of a lot better with elbow length hair than a plain old bob. Funnily enough, this woman looks older with short hair than with longer hair

    1. Yes! This really annoys me too, mostly because I like my hair long and don’t really see why I should have to cut it short just to obey some strange rule! My mum actually let her hair grow a bit longer than she usually wears it recently – she was quite paranoid that it was “too young”, but I really think it looks great (it helps that she has really shiny, glossy hair!), and it does make her look younger. It’s not the case for everyone, obviously, but I do think very short hair can be quite ageing on some people, although it’s perhaps just that we tend to associate longer hair with youth. It used to be the case that “older” woman all went and got identical cropped perms, but not so much now, thank goodness!

  6. Totally agree with you. Everyone should dress, walk, talk, dance…the way they want to, otherwise we will loose our own personality. I just have to point out the number 17 “Non-matching Socks”, oh well I agree with that one, ahahaha…
    In line with this discussion I will point out our website, with a selection of watches and sunglasses, where we hope that everyone can make their own style with cool fashion pieces.
    Visit us and find amazing products: [redacted]

    1. Hi Sara

      I appreciate your comment (and also hate non-matching socks!), but as this website is my livelihood and part of my income depends on selling advertising on it, I hope you understand why I don’t allow people to advertise in the comments section. There’s a URL field in the comments box which you’re welcome to put your URL in (if people like your comment, they will normally click through), or, alternatively, I offer low cost sidebar advertising here: http://www.foreveramber.co.uk/media-kit.html Thanks!

  7. Completely agree – as a woman who will turn 30 in under a year’s time, I can tell you right now I’m not going to change one iota about how I dress just because society is putting me in a different bracket now! I can completely see why any woman would feel like they had to though – and the media can take a lot of the blame for this. The Daily Mail can probably take the lion’s share over here!!

  8. Also I’ve just noticed the dress on the top of the article and I need it. Good distraction from the article methinks

  9. I totally agree with you here! I must admit that most of the fashion bloggers I follow are all over the age of 40, and I feel like they all have their own style down to a T; they know what they like, what works and doesn’t work for them, and I find their style much more enviable than fashion bloggers my own age. I can only hope my own personal style is as good as theirs when I am that age! xxx

  10. I think if it looks good and feels good, wear it. And don’t even get me started on the ‘women shouldn’t have long hair after a certain age’ debate…

  11. The article is quite disappointing and a little irritating. Since when did we have to approach what we wear in our 30’s like we are suddenly in our 60’s? There are so many more factors that go into what you “should” or “shouldn’t” wear besides your age. I think it depends on your personality and lifestyle and what is flattering on your body shape. But I have to admit, I occasionally will question what I am wearing worried that I can’t pull it off anymore. I have to remind myself not to be so self-conscious about it. The most important thing is whether I feel confident and comfortable. There are several things on that list that I didn’t even wear in my 20’s because it isn’t my style and I tend to dress more conservatively. Things on the list that I reacted to are leopard print, sunglasses, and hoop earrings. I love wearing these items and don’t plan on stopping any time soon.

    1. “Since when did we have to approach what we wear in our 30’s like we are suddenly in our 60’s”
      Actually, I think women in their 60s should wear what the hell they like too!

  12. *standing ovation*

    Yes. Hell yes. To this entire rant. I hit thirty this past year, and my younger friends were all (jokingly), “Your life is now over”, while my older friends (in all seriousness) said, “This is where life gets good”.

    They spoke the truth.

    Even though I just hit this chapter in my life, I can already feel a difference. I’m finally comfortable enough in my own skin, and have enough self-confidence, that I’m willing to really experiment with fashion. How dare sometime try to tell me that I can’t because of my age.

  13. I’m often reminded being too skinny as if it’s provocative to them. It’s irony that they always think they’re overweight, other people are either as overweight as them or too skinny. They recently switched their focus on my younger sister, saying, aww….she’s slightly skinnier than me. If you wonder, she’s the same size and same height as Cara Delevigne. They also commented my cousin who stands at 180cm being too tall and her UK8 size is overweight. Gosh!
    6 weeks ago, I told my sister don’t take it to heart when people comment about her weight. If they don’t even like how they look, who are they to comment about her? I get these comments often enough to annoy me, I think the same for her too. She liked it when I said: You should embrace your body, wear the outfits that flatter you and be happy.

  14. Sorry, I deviated. But my point is, whatever people say about age, weight and height, don’t let them try to rule us.

  15. A big birthday heading my way, and not my 30th. I still wear what I want – though my tastes have changed as I’ve gotten older anyway. Where do these people find time to write these ridiculous lists? Awful to think how they can erode women’s confidence.

    Similarly, there was a saying I read that a woman over 40 was more likely to come to a sticky end than start a new relationship with a man. Hmmmm… have happily proven that one wrong too!

    1. ” though my tastes have changed as I’ve gotten older anyway.”

      I think this is really important, and probably true for most of us… When I was in my late teens/early 20s, I used to wear micro-minis all the time, and/or bodycon dresses (like, ACTUAL bodycon dresses, not what I’d describe as that now!) aaaaallll the time. Now I don’t ever wear that kind of thing, but it’s not because I think I’m too old, it’s because my taste changed, and now I don’t actually LIKE them. I mean, I’m not sitting here thinking, “If only I was young enough to wear pelmet skirts again!”

  16. Or we could have some fun and make our own rules… Under 30s aren’t mature enough for cashmere or a fabulous little black dress!

  17. You are so write, I have never felt more confident than I do now (although I am still a few months off 30.) I can remember my mum telling me at about 18 I was too old to wear tops with writing on any more (made me laugh).. I’m sorry, actually I’m not sorry. I love me. I love my body and I will wear whatever the heck I like!

    Brilliant post, thank you for ranting!

  18. There’s not a lot I can say that hasn’t been said, but thank you for the best rant I’ve read in a good long while! I would like to extend this mantra to body shapes too. I say, wear what makes you happy and at any age and at any shape! It’s not time to stop wearing something unless you’re no longer happy with it. When did we become so entrenched in other people’s lives?! You (people in general, that is) aren’t a number or a fruit – you’re a beautiful person with thoughts and feelings!

    1. Yes, definitely – I hate any line of thought which basically says, “these clothes are only for THIS group of people”: we’ll all wear what we like, thanks!

  19. I’m 50, 6 days from 51 and I’m sitting here in my favorite hoops and leopard flats and they both look great. Who are they to tell anyone what to wear?

  20. I agree with everything here, I turned 32 this year and besides my work clothes (which consists of numerous pairs of gap khakis) my wardrobe is pretty close to what it was in my early 20s. The main difference is I now have the confidence to wear the sparkly shorts that I bought when I was younger and then took off Every. Damn. Time. thinking they were “too much”, my skin cleared up and I discovered bright lipstick makes me feel awesome. I’m short I am comfortable enough in my own skin to wear all the things I WANTED to wear before but was terrified people would notice me so I owe it to younger me to do just that.

  21. Well, obviously, women of any age should not just dress the way others see fit, but they should behave the way others see fit and exist (or not) in the way others, preferably men, see fit. Policing of women’s bodies and women’s behaviour that these kinds of articles advocate is so, so insidious. I don’t know whether to be enraged or saddened by the internalised misogyny of the person who wrote that rubbish.

  22. 30 is still a few years away for me, but I totally agree with you! Turning 30 doesn’t mean you instantly transform into a frumpy grandma overnight. I already feel a little strange ordering so many things from American Eagle (lots of “young” clothing), but it’s no one else’s business how I clothe my body.

  23. Yes! Thank you so much. This is just so true.
    I made the mistake to read one of these lists some months ago and all it got me thinking was; no thank you. No one other than me is going to tell me how to dress.
    Felling good in what one is wearing makes one look good in it. And that is true no matter how old (or young) you are. /love ida

  24. If a 47-year-old may weigh in, I would like to say that if what you’re wearing is in line with your lifestyle, your values, and your personality, it’s right for you. If you’re choosing your wardrobe based on the hottest trends rather than your own taste, it will look like a costume no matter your age. If you wear something awful/ridiculous to be “ironic,” it’s a costume. If your style choices reflect your own personality, they will look correct on you at any age (see: Cher, Betsey Johnson, Iris Apfel, et al). Wear what works for you and ignore the pronouncements of people whose motivation is to sell you something. The benefit of maturity is the ability to make decisions about one’s own life, so enjoy it.

  25. 51 and not slime. Still off to a pool party wearing a 2 piece bathing suit because it is red with white polka dots!

  26. Hear, hear! And not just because I’m looking for a pair or leopard print shoes and some cool graphic tees for my wardrobe right now to wear with my classy (all ages appropriate) pencil skirts. I say rock what you love because it will help you feel confident. And confidence is the best accessory.

  27. This drives me crazy too – we’re so obsessed with age. When I turned seven my grandmother gave me money and I bought three dresses – not toys. I loved toys and books, but I’ve always loved clothes. Now that I’m 54, I’m supposed to go quietly and dress frumpily or appropriately covered. I am a size four and still have good legs, and if I want to show them, I will. I still love fashion and I love your blog.

  28. My coworker and I always joke about what age we are going to trade in our looks for elastic pants, short permed hair, and matching jewelry sets 😉

    These kinds of articles assume everyone has the same lifestyle and work in an office… i work in a warehouse setting so jeans and converse all the way for me (and weekends too).

  29. Thank you for this rant. While there are definitely some clothes that I am relieved to let go of from my twenties and earlier (crop tops and short shorts come to mind- i can’t imagine wearing them as short as some girls do today) I also feel much happier as myself and enjoy my clothes so much more now. And I am happy to keep wearing backless dresses until the cows come home and not a day sooner!

  30. You’re so god damn right! In my case, people expect me to wear more provocative clothes when I go to parties, simply because I’m 17. But I don’t want to! I want to look nice, sure, but if wearing a super cropped, low cut top and a spandex mini skirt makes me feel uncomfortable I will NOT wear it, thank you very much. Give me my black skinny jeans and my slightly cropped top and I’ll be parting all night long.
    That said, I do agree with the list when it comes to booty shorts. Not because women over 30 shouldn’t wear it, but because I think no one should- I don’t think having your buttocks hanging out is a good look, no matter how young and thin and beautiful you are

  31. This couldn’t have needed to be said more!
    I actually asked a colleague if she liked a bikini online a few days ago and she responded with: “you’re nearly 25 don’t you think you’re getting a little too old to be wearing that?”
    My mother is in her fifties and still rocks a bikini just as great as many 20 year olds I know. And all the time she feels great doing it I’m going to support her!

    Aside anything else, that article should of been titled “things no one should wear” since that seemed to be the message that came across for most items on the list!

    Bowie-xx

    1. Oh good grief, that’s so absurd! I can’t believe people consider TWENTY FIVE to be “too old” for ANYTHING, for one, but also, what on earth are we supposed to wear to swim in?! I mean, I like a retro one-piece myself, but it doesn’t cover THAT much more than a bikini (which I also wear): I guess we should be hiring some kind of bathing contraption, so no one has to see our elderly flesh? lol!

  32. I feel like the only person happy to be turning 30 this year! (Could the cheeky holiday to Vegas but let pretend it’s not!) I feel more comfortable with myself now than I ever did at 20, wear pretty dresses just because I want to and can afford a bigger wardrobe! Bye bye twenties, we had fun but I’m going to have more fun in my thirties when it comes to style!

  33. I read this article too, Amber (via Twitter) and I actually laughed out loud…. I love most of the forbidden things on the list! AND I am over 40 (shock horror)… Call the fashion police!

    Luckily, I am not willing to give up the ghost yet and I am certainly not apologising to anyone for my fashion choices.

    I felt a little angry that this article might put, even the smallest, seed of self-doubt in any of my fellow female’s heads.
    I hope nobody out there feels like they have to obey any sets of fashion ‘rules’. Who decides these things anyway?
    Individuals should make their own choices…young people don’t need to dress in skimpy clothes and older women don’t need to head into frumpsville.

    I still feel 20 and I will be who I am until the day I die…AND If I want to rock a cropped top or glitter eye-shadow, I bloody-well will!!

    Great post, thank you Amber!
    Samantha
    XXX

    http://www.fakefabulous40.blogspot.co.uk

  34. I think all humans should be able to wear what they want. Especially women are being pushed to be “sexy, but not too sexy” (in some cultures, and this is valid for women in general) and maybe even pushed to NOT to dress “sexy” and “youthful” and “colourful” and “etc” at a certain age (in this case the random number is “30”) (or replace “etc” with other adjectives in other cultures).
    I am totally for everyone wearing what they want and not getting any negative comments from others or worse, being bullied at best and rape victims at worst. These stereotypes people are supposed to fit in are always used as a control mechanism by others. Why people cannot just let other people live and let them do what they want and wear what they want and be who they want to be …. that’s another question which should be answered by someone who knows more about sociology and the psychology of humans than I do.

    I am against pushing any woman to wear “etc” just because it was created as another artificial role women are being pressed into. Wear what you want and what you like. In my case that’s suits or jeans with riding boots, both just feel right on me.

  35. Hi, I’m 64 y.o. Yes, you read me right. I’m that “old” lady following your mother’s blog.

    I’m so happy to read young ladies like you are refusing to obey any kind of rules dictated by who knows who about what they should wear or not, what they should do or not etc etc.

    I agree completely with your opinion and most of your friend’s replies.

    When I was 16, I was too thin for some people (mainly my mother). Then, there were people telling me I was wearing my shirt too short (mainly co-workers). When I became a mother, I was shopping for a leather coat and the saleslady told me that “a mother should not wear “that””!!!!!

    Now that I’m 64, I’m supposed to disappear???? No way José!!!!

    As you can see, at all ages there will be somebody to dictate how a woman should behave, dress, dance, work, talk and more… Don’t listen to them unless it is very sound advice. Do your thing.

    Youth is passing so quickly, you do your best to live a full life and wear your hair the way you want it.

    By the way, you are really beautiful, Amber.

  36. Great post, Amber. I hate the attitude that, sans youth, women should effectively diminish and go into the west Galadriel style. Being twenty was great – all that energy! But frankly I spent most of that energy on worrying what other people thought about me (don’t we all). I intend to enjoy my thirties and every other decade I’m granted from here on out damnit!

  37. Kudos to you Amber, for writing this post! I am 54 and am a 2 year breast cancer survivor. Although my body is starting to sag a bit, I am still a size 0. I may not CHOOSE to wear a mini skirt without tights, but I will with them. I think the older we get, we learn what looks good and what doesn’t, but…WE can make that decision without the “fashion police” (whoever they are) dictating rules for us. And, after going through cancer, I am going to live it up and have fun in all areas of my life, especially fashion!!!
    You keep doing you, any way you choose!!! xoxo

  38. I LOVE this article! Thank you Amber so so much! Recently I had that ,,what are people gonna think about me, if I wear this/that,, and thanks to your kind words I realised how stupid it was.
    Aren’t we already under too much pressure? Do we really need more? I don’t think so.
    To hell with these stupid rules and let’s be happy with our cute clothes and panda skirts or whatever we want to wear!

  39. Remember when I did my T-shirt challenge along with the Shoe Challenge a few years ago? I was 38 then. And most (if not all) of those T-shirts had some movie-/TV show-/otherwise geeky print on them. I still wear shorts. I still wear sneakers.BECAUSE I LIKE IT THAT WAY. Yes, I’m over 40 now, and I notice that my body doesn’t look as youthful anymore as it did ten years ago. Of course! I’m ten years older now, duh. But that doesn’t mean I should only wear sackcloth and ashes from now on. And I think that many younger people actually do look and dress a lot worse than I do.

    If you look closely a lot of points in the original article don’t even relate to age. (See 24, 22, 20, 19, 13, 10, and 7). The author simply states her dislike of certain clothes. So this means that “I” am not allowed to wear them, because “SHE” doesn’t like them. Yeah, sure… who is she again? And even if she were Anna Wintour, I still couldn’t care less. Because it’s my body, and my decision how I dress it.

    On a side note: My mother is about to turn 77 in a few weeks. She owns one beige jacket, but a lot of jeans, flat sport-style shoes, and colourful sweaters. And I’m happy about it.

  40. I had a look at that article, some of things I do wear (I’m 32) and even my mother wears them, like scrunchies, graphic tees (I even have one that says: rottweiler mum 😀 ) and a couple of other things. Some of them I don’t think should be available in shops regardless of age :)) Anyway, I had fun.

  41. Oh, my goodness. I made the mistake of clicking another article on that site. (“30 Things Women Over 30 Shouldn’t Own.)

    That’s not the worst website on the internet, I’m sure, but it’s up there.

  42. OMG, i’m a skinny 34 and what am I supposed to wear?My grandma’s clothes?(who was petite and skinny and bought kid tees and “girls” underwear for almost all her life) And why should I try to look “mature”? Am I a peach?

  43. Great post, so good to hear women in their 30s kicking this crap to the kerb! I hadn’t seen that pathetic article about what not to wear after 30, I was too busy going out in clothes I wore in my 20s. I blogged about this last week, about getting older, and wondering if wardrobe choices should change. Grrr. This is a fantastic blog, thanks.

  44. Lol! This all totally cracked me up! I’m in my mid-30s and definitely deal with my weight more than I ever did before, but I still wear a lot of the same clothes and also newer, trendy ones that I cute and look good and it doesn’t matter that I’m not 20 anymore. I have friends and sister-in-laws that actually look better than they did at 20 and so how age affects what they wear??? Well, whatever. I was actually just having a conversation with a friend yesterday about clothes because her daughter who is in jr. high borrows from her closet sometimes and we were talking about how our mothers never really wore what we considered trendy, cute clothes when we were teens but that I feel like our generation isn’t that way. The styles, culture, and living habits have changed. We’re a healthier generation in some ways. Everything is so easily accessible as well and I feel like my generation is younger longer, if you know what I mean. I feel like we’re all so confident too at this age and older. So, yes, I think we should wear whatever we want as long as it’s not obscene, but that has nothing to do with age.

  45. I love the wear what you want crowd because it’s nobody’s business or I can’t wear that over age……group. I’m 74, looking like 50, and I wear what I want as long as it fits my figure and flatters my body and enhances my personal style. I sat with a friend at the mall the other day and watched and maybe 10% of the women wore outfits that you could truly say were “put together”, That doesn’t mean you can’t be a bit eccentric or even bold. I want people to admire me for my choices, not be amused by them

  46. Thanks for a great post, Amber! Since I was about 15 I heard I was too old for wearing this and that (before it I was too young) by my Mum and spent my twenties insecure, in clothes that made me invisible. Finally, in my thirties I have come to accept myself and my body and I want to enjoy my beauty and style without anyone telling me what I should/shouldn’t wear.
    However, having read both yours and the other post, I can’t stop thinking that the “shouldn’t wear it” list was written with intention to cause outrage and controversy. I think they hoped for and expected this kind of comments, shares, tweets, etc. to raise their profile. I seriously doubt that, in today’s world, any woman over 30 would obey such a dictate by “who is she anyway?” I hope I’m not wrong, not for myself, but for other women’s sake.

  47. As I waa growing up I heard my mother OFTEN say: “she looks like mutton dressed up as Lamb, take a look at her father” and Dad would invariably say: “she looks fine to me Mother.”
    Then i hit 40 and the kids wanted to throw me a party. I went to buy an outfit and told lady I needed a 40 ish outfit.
    She said: 40 is the new 30. I said, “really?” She gave me a gorgeous softly flowing tiered indian cotton skirt and a leopard skin blouse in sheer fabric with a slinky tank and some statement jewellery and I thought, “oh am I too old?”
    Now I’m 49 in a few weeks and people still tell me I look 30 but inside my head is the ‘mutton dressed as lamb’ comment from my very fashionable mother who loved to comment on the drably, ageing ladies just as well as those who fought it tooth and nail. To this day I felt I should cut my hair shorter because I was older now and the severe, pixie I now wear has had me in tears more than a handful of times. I firmly believe sitting at the other end of the fence, be who you are, wear what makes you happy because if you alter yourself to fit an invisible standard (that standard can change with each person who comments by the way) you lose yourself and that feeling is devastating.
    In our circle there are those who feel short hair is wrong on a woman, leopard skin is for lust, red is for —–, black is for sex, and hair dyes and make up are for liars. That leaves little not condemned!
    Be who you are because trying to accomodate others makes for confusion and much unhappiness. Oh and Mum is 88 and still says the same thing. Often it’s an attitude of unhappiness.

  48. As I was growing up I heard my mother OFTEN say: “she looks like mutton dressed up as Lamb, take a look at her father” and Dad would invariably say: “she looks fine to me Mother.”
    Then when I hit 40 the kids wanted to throw me a party. Off I went to buy an outfit and told lady: “I needed a 40 ish outfit.
    She said: “40 is the new 30.”
    I said, “really?” She gave me a gorgeous softly flowing tiered indian cotton skirt and a leopard skin blouse in sheer fabric with a slinky tank and some statement jewellery and I thought, “Oh I love it but can I wear this, am I too old?” She says: “no” looking back at the photos I look 26-27!!!
    Time passed and now I’m 49 and people still tell me I look 30 yet, inside my head is this ‘mutton dressed as lamb’ comment from my very fashionable mother who loved to comment on the drably, ageing ladies just as well as those who fought it tooth and nail. To this day I feel I should cut my hair shorter because I was older now and the severe, pixie I now wear has had me in tears more than a handful of times. I firmly believe from sitting at the other end of the ageing mentality fence, “be who you are, wear what makes you happy because if you alter yourself to fit an invisible standard (that standard can change with each person who comments by the way) you lose yourself and that feeling is devastating.”
    In our circle there are those who feel short hair is wrong on a woman, leopard skin is for lust, red is for —–, black is for sex, and hair dyes and make up are for liars. That leaves little to wear but old ladies clothes at any age.
    Be who you are because trying to accomodate others makes for confusion and much unhappiness. Oh and Mum is 88 and still says the same thing. Often it’s an attitude of unhappiness or bitterness that forces others into being invisible.

  49. I am in total agreement Amber! I’m in my early forties and much more confident and comfortable with how I dress than when I was in my twenties. When I reached 40, I didn’t think to myself ‘it’s time to stop shopping in Topshop’. I buy what I feel happy in no matter where it is from. That’s not to say I go around wearing mini skirts and boob tubes but I never have done just because that’s not me and I never have done not even as a teen. Thank you so much for writing this Amber. You have done it so well.
    Have a good day x

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