One of the things people sometimes say about getting older is that you can finally quit worrying about how you look and dress for comfort. However, this is a dangerous conclusion as it allows us to accept our status as ‘past it’, and can create fertile ground for accepting other conditions associated with ageing, such as poor health, failing memory and lack of purpose.
Frumpy 2We need to worry about how we look. In fact a good antidote to social isolation is the impetus to keep ourselves looking good. This is not about having Botox injections or face-lifts, but about dressing well and (for women) using good makeup which can easily take ten years off our appearance.
Some women give up on being women, and some men adopt an alias of A. Slob. This does sometimes depend on culture, with Great Britain being often maligned as a fashion wasteland for many over fifties, but it is also true that even younger women – particularly after their family is complete – go for the “convenience hairstyle” (cropped and boring) which ages them and signifies the end of their lives as a sexual being. Matronly dresses and ill-matched colour schemes signal to the world we are on the way out. However, dressing as though we are currently in our prime will not only improve the quality of our lives but will send a clear message to our body that we still have decades of exciting times ahead.
Frumpy 3With a little effort we can look amazing, and as attractive as people years younger than we are. Saving for good quality outfits and visiting a posh clothes shop are really good steps that we can take to stay ageless. Never dared go in one of those places? Now’s the time. See what we like, what we can afford, as a treat. Buying something really nice sends a message to our body and to the forces of the mind that control our circumstances that we are no longer going to shortchange ourselves.
Things to avoid : Dated glasses, yellow teeth and baggy tent-like clothes, saggy breasts (get a good bra), old-lady patterns (floral prints). Dressing well means care with denim and skirts that are too short or too long, being honest about whether shoes are comfortable or just unflattering and avoiding silly T-shirts with logos.
For men, it’s about avoiding ancient chequered shirts, ill-fitting trousers (belts under bellies), socks with sandals, novelty ties and jumpers, shiny material, multi-coloured outfits..shall I go on? Looking rich and stylish not only lifts our spirits but those of our loved ones too and even of those who see us strutting our stuff at work or when we walk down the street. Making an effort is also a mark of respect for our partners and colleagues.
Frumpy 4Let’s make it a rule that every season we will splash out on one knock-‘em-out outfit.

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