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In praise of older women

world Updated: Jul 21, 2008 01:28 IST
Vijay Dutt
Vijay Dutt
Hindustan Times
Sexy at 70

After 40, women were supposed to be getting old and take to wearing clothes that covered their “loosening” body. But when Helen Mirren showed off her voluptuous figure in a bikini, she took over pages in top dailies flashing a sexy smile to compliment her scarlet bikini. There are now women past 50, 60 and even 70 who have defied age and remain charming and enticing and are world famous for their attractiveness.

“What is the thing that has made the most difference — the right to vote, equal pay or the elusive promise thereof? The pill? Abortion? Divorce? Or the possibility that we may, at 62, perhaps look like Helen Mirren in a bikini? … Today we all have fortysomething, fifty-something, even sixtysomething friends who dress in such a way that they look about 15 from the back. We think it's perfectly normal. It was not always so, even within living memory,” says India Knight in Sunday Times.

By wearing red bikini with such style, Mirren has redefined the possibilities and smashed through any number of societal glass ceilings. “The photograph of Mirren looking golden and incredibly sex — a figure that many women of my generation would kill for — is going to become famous and with excellent reason, not least that she is properly sexy,” says Knight.

Another glowing example is Meryl Streep, who is pushing 60, in this summer's smash-hit blockbuster Mamma Mia! The audiences are spellbound not by the film's younger cast members,” but Streep, yelling Abba lyrics and looking beautiful and sensual.