Who decides what beautiful is?

With high profile models such as Heidi Klum hanging up her undies and quitting the catwalk at age 40, how old is acceptable to model?

In the industry as we know it lingerie modelling is generally reserved for the 18 – 24 year old model body. But should it be? What do you think?

Personally I find it inspiring to see women over the ‘expected age’ looking fabulous in their undies. And that isn’t simply down to the fact that I am in my forties. To me it shows that a healthy lifestyle, good food, exercise and the commitment to looking after your body is a choice that can only be positive. It also lets people know that these choices can last a lifetime, and indeed that kind of IS the point! To have a healthy lifestyle doesn’t mean to be a size eight necessarily either. The emphasis is on the HEALTHY.

Heidi has been quoted as saying that she no longer feels ‘comfortable’ showcasing lingerie at the age of 40. Which is completely her choice of course. As a mother of four and an ‘all natural’ physique Heidi will continue in other genres of modelling, but feels the time is right for her to ditch the work involving itsy bitsy clothing. Fair enough. But what do we think the main reason for her decision really is? And why would she feel uncomfortable? She looks fantastic to me.

There has been a huge amount of press about the ‘rights and wrongs’ of how we are ‘supposed’ to look. As infuriating as it is, it all essentially boils down to this… NOBODY is happy with what they look like.

Too beautiful – hide it to prevent jealousy and resulting effects.
Too curvy – ooh, best cover up as apparently that’s not what people want to see.
Too thin – better put some clothes on or be accused of irresponsibly deeming the thinner frame as being acceptable.
So HOW EXACTLY is it acceptable to look then? If you can’t be too beautiful, too big, too small or too old? What does that leave us with? I tell you what. TOO GRUMPY.

It seems to me that no matter what, there will always be someone who complains about it. That’s what we are really dealing with here. A nation of complainers!

So what I say is this. Be happy in your own skin. Accept it if others are equally happy even if it doesn’t fit your personal view. It isn’t down to any one person, the media or any other avenue of historical blame. It’s down to ALL OF US to be kinder people. Stop slagging people off. Who are YOU anyway to decide what IS and what ISN’T gorgeous? Love yourself and you may find you begin to see the world a little differently.

Ruthie D
Every Model Magazine




2 thoughts on “Who decides what beautiful is?”

  1. Perhaps Heidi has decided to draw a line at modelling underwear over 40 years of age, maybe because she feels that a woman should grow older gracefully… its not to say she feels unattractive. Although I’m sure she is no stranger to criticism over the years I am sure she still receives plenty of encouragement. I think it shows enormous strength of personality to be able to call the shots and say no when the industry still wants her. Who knows though… she might end up doing a one off underwear shot in a few years and making a mint lol. 🙂

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