There seems to be an endless stream of conflicting 'advice' on what women should and shouldn't wear as they get older. A blog here, on the Huffington Post, recently condemned the fact that Little Mix were asked what their mums would make of their 'risqué' fashion choices. But what if it was mum herself wearing the outfit? Heaven forbid!
You'd think our confidence would ascend like a phoenix from the flames after the insecurity of our 20s and we wouldn't give a damn what people thought, but it seems that society has other ideas.
For fear of judgement from others, older women tend to play it safe fashion-wise, sticking to a handful of brands that we see our peers wearing and giving up on anything that we perceive to represent 'young fashion'.
In truth, many women my age feel that they've lost the right to wear what they want. But, as I've said many times before, and will continue to do so - fashion is ageless!
Women don't get to 'a certain age' and suddenly stop caring about fashion, despite what some labels and magazines would have us believe.
Encouragingly, we're starting to see an increase in more body-positive media, such as this recent piece in The Telegraph applauding high street stores for featuring older models in their advertising campaigns.
What's yours is mine
So let's switch off from everyone around us for a second and reassess how we want to look and feel. I know how easy it is to slip into the habits of buying an 'appropriate' or 'safe' outfit, but fashion can be so much more exciting than that!
Here are my top five tips for how we can make sure 'fashion is ageless' everyone's mantra:
1. Ignore any articles that say you 'can't' or 'shouldn't' be wearing '(insert any number of fashion items) at your age'.
2. Try something new - next time you go shopping, try three or four stores that you don't normally go into or browse websites you don't normally use. You'll be amazed at what you can find.
3. Mix and match - changing your image can be quite daunting, but you don't have to go the whole hog. Start with picking an accessory in a new style or colour you wouldn't normally wear.
4. Update your beauty products - everyone has their favourites and we tend to stick to the same skincare and make-up routine for years and years. But treat yourself and experiment just once every three months - mixing things up is a sure-fire way to make sure your skin isn't relying on the same products day-in, day-out. Oh, and that lipstick you're scared to wear? Wear it!
5. Putting on a mini skirt or a pyjama suit isn't 'juvenile' just because you're not 20 and appearing in Grazia, it is having fun with a new trend or just wearing something you like. Guaranteed people will envy your confidence.
One of the main reasons my daughter Emilie and I started The Posh Rock was to be a positive, optimistic voice and to empower women of all ages to feel confident in their relationship with fashion. We're constantly sneaking into each other's wardrobes or lending items to each other - proving that, whether you're 20 or 50, you can wear whatever you like.
But we can't do it alone. Inspiration comes from our peers so it's up to you and your friends to encourage each other to step out from behind the mirror and say "Yes, I am really wearing this."
Dawn is co-founder of The Posh Rock, a fashion and beauty blog for women aged between 40 and 60, and anyone either side - www.theposhrock.comSuggest a correction