I’m on TV several times a week for The Social and etalk, and one of the things I’m constantly hearing from audience members or on social media is, “Cut that hair!”—that it’s too long for my age. First of all: If you had my hair, would you cut it?
My mother gave me this hair, and I’m extremely proud of it. And now, what, just because I’m in my forties, I’m supposed to just get a haircut like that Kate woman with all the kids in the reality show? Please.
I feel like this happens to a lot of women: We hit a certain age, and all of a sudden society tells us to put on a shift dress and graduate to a new standard of sophistication or maturity. We talk about how important it is to express ourselves, but the truth is only certain forms of expression are deemed “acceptable.” No way—my philosophy is “high school for life!” I love teen dramas, I read young adult novels, and I love to kick it in baggy dresses and sneakers, and wear my hair in pigtails.
I say if you’re 20 and you want to dress like a 65-year-old, go ahead! And vice versa. It doesn’t mean I’m the same person I was 20 or even 10 years ago. For me, aging is about evolving, learning and questioning our preconceived notions and the way society has been shaped by certain people being in power.
One of the things I talk about a lot on my blog, Lainey Gossip, is how gossip provides a window into society and the way we see the world at any given time: What are the things we value? What are the behaviours we tolerate? There are definitely posts from a few years ago that I wouldn’t write today. There are a few celebrities who went a little overboard with plastic surgery, and I was pretty judgy.
Today, I understand that it’s more complicated—that we need to have a conversation about a system that tells women they are only valuable if they look a certain way.
It’s the same with celebrities who are extremely thin. There used to be this joke, like, “Eat a sandwich!” I wouldn’t say that anymore.
Some women want to embrace their wrinkles—good for them, but that’s not me. Maybe I’ll get fillers in a few years or cool sculpting. If I do, the one thing I can say for sure is that you’ll know about it.
Read more from our aging series—which also features Jann Arden and Marilyn Denis—here.