Women are sexy at any age

Women are sexy at any age

Athena Skapinakis

Editor-in-Chief

At what age does a woman stop being sexy?
This was a recent question I asked on Facebook to determine some sort of general consensus on the issue. Responses ranged from “never” to “in her 50s, sometimes 40s” to “when she decides to let herself go” and to “when she becomes too full of herself.”
Facebook users argued that sexiness is a subjective term and that beauty is in the eye of the beholder, while others suggested that it depends on the woman, either how she feels about herself or how she continues to maintain herself throughout her livelihood. Some were even offended by the wording choice, deeming it as an “offensive, naïve, typical Bakersfield worldview.”
However, this just isn’t a local viewpoint. This is a societal issue women face everywhere around the world, and women who do “maintain themselves” are not exempt from such censure.
This can be seen in the recent criticism highest-paid Latina actress and pop artist Jennifer Lopez has faced for her new music video with Iggy Azalea called “Booty.” The music video features both women engaging in heavy twerking. Several opinions were voiced after the video’s launch. Amongst those claims was that Lopez had portrayed herself in a way that was too young for her age.
To top it off, some feminist groups suggested that the music video was demeaning for women because of its hyper-sexualized content.
The 45-year-old mother of two defended her video in an interview with The Insider on Yahoo! and said, “This is good for women. You don’t have to disappear after you’re 28 years old. You can be here, you can be vital and young and sexy and feel good about yourself.”
Other viewers claimed that Lopez outshined fellow artist Azalea, 23, despite the age difference. This plays into the societal norm assuming that women are in constant competition with another. By drawing such comparisons between the two artists, both beautiful in their own respects, we perpetuate the idea that women must be rivals with one another.
“You don’t have to worry about competing with anybody,” said Lopez. “We weren’t competing, me and Iggy in the video. We were co-existing in kind of a beautiful way and owning it!”
Outrageous and impossible beauty standards have affected women for far too long, and I would think, that in 2014, some vast improvements would have been made. That’s not to lessen the impact of the positive changes we have made so far, but the fact that ageism and sexism still exist in this time is infuriating.
Ideals such as beauty and sexiness are relative terms. There is no clear-cut definition, which can truly limit who or what is sexy and at what age that stops. Women should not be policed based on their age as to what they can and cannot do. No individual should face dictation, which limits them in any shape or manner.
“Not only do we suffer from racism and sexism, and things like that, but we suffer from ageism. And that is once you reach a certain age, you’re not allowed to be adventurous. You’re not allowed to be sexual. And I think that’s hideous,” Madonna once said in an interview. She also asked if there was a rule or if women are supposed to just die when they turn 40.
According to a 2008 Studies in Gender & Sexuality article by Helene Moglen, “Sexism plays a crucial role in the social and psychological construction of ageism.” Both men and women should be allowed to age with pride rather than have a fear of being judged.
So, now to answer the question: What age does a woman stop being sexy?
The answer is that we do not stop.
Women do not come with an expiration date. Just because we age we will not be forced into hiding. Stop telling us we are too old to be sexy or anything else less than what we are. There is no unwritten law to censure us or keep us from being who we are. We are women, and we are ageless in what we are capable of.