How to Dress

At 50, are you “too old” to wear a certain item of clothing?

A miniskirt?

Platform shoes?

A cut-out top?

Of course you’re too old. Who do you think you are, Madonna? You’re 50, for crying out loud. Have some dignity. And, as Socrates said – or was it Bono? – “Know thyself.” By which he meant: Cover up.

On the other hand, at 50, you no longer care what people think. You can wear whatever the Sam Hill you want. (And use phrases like “What in the Sam Hill?” – preferably in a Jimmy Stewart-ish tone of voice.) But keep in mind:

  1. A touch of certain motifs goes a long way. Use these sparingly: Animal prints. Sequins. Metallics. (And Metallica, for that matter.) They will all make you seem older than you are.
  2. At this point in your life, you know what suits you. Whether your go-to look is a wrap dress, wide-legged pants, or three-quarter length sleeves, there’s no shame in sticking with your style. Look at Stevie Nicks, for pity’s sake – a woman who claimed her signature look in 1975 and hasn’t budged since, and is now the best-loved American since Ben Franklin.
  3. If, however, you can only find your signature style (combat boots, bell bottoms, power suits) at the vintage shop, it might be a sign that your wardrobe needs one modern tweak. That tweak is called yoga pants.
  4. If you don’t have a style, that’s ok too. Unless you work in the fashion industry – NO ONE CARES. Here’s one secret power of being 50 – we are invisible to much of the world. Use that power for good.
  5. If you have a job that requires you to dress nicely, buy things that are stretchy but don’t look stretchy. (I recommend nice yoga pants. But then again I work in a room that used to be a closet and have limited contact with the outside world.)
  6. Remember that ninety percent of fashion problems are solved by simply never standing next to people who are young, slender, and well-dressed. Avoid these human beings and you’ll be the best-looking person in the room.
  7. Skip the cut-outs. Seriously.
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Filed under 50 funny humor midlife, women's

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