ANGELES — Actress and celebrity lifestyle entrepreneur
Gwyneth Paltrow blew through Los Angeles recently,
appearing at a handful of events and signings for her
new cookbook, "It’s All Good: Delicious, Easy
Recipes That Will Make You Look Good and Feel
Great," and for the launch of her fitness
trainer-business partner Tracy Anderson’s Flagship
Studio in Brentwood.
wore spring looks by Isabel Marant, Victoria Beckham and
Stella McCartney during her whirlwind trip. But the real
star of her healthful living road show wasn’t a
designer frock; it was Anderson’s handiwork.
incredibly toned and tanned legs were front and center
in every outfit, including the pair of black Lycra hot
pants she wore with a white Stella McCartney blazer to a
book signing at Williams-Sonoma in Beverly Hills. That’s
right, hot pants.
"Iron Man 3" actress looked great; no one is
debating that. But Paltrow is 40 years old, and although
her physique is unquestionably perfect, thanks to a
strict regimen that even has hubby Chris Martin and
their kids cutting out carbs, her wardrobe choices raise
the question: Is there such a thing as age-appropriate
dressing anymore? Or are Paltrow’s diet and fitness
plan turning that notion on its head?
all know that 30 is the new 20 and 40 is the new 30, but
to those out there who are 40 and up, I have to ask:
Would you wear Lycra hot pants anywhere, except maybe to
Anderson’s gym? How about a miniskirt so short, you
can’t bend over to pick up your children without
giving them a peep show?
informal survey of coworkers and friends yielded
different opinions on Paltrow’s ageless bod-as-branding
tactic. One person said, "If I had legs like that,
I would wear them (shorts and short skirts) until the
day I died." (And certainly, there are many women
who subscribe to this belief, Tina Turner and Diane von
Furstenberg among them.)
think Paltrow is out of touch with reality in the
micro-minis and midriff-baring tops that have become her
style signatures over the last couple of years. "It
looks desperate — like a 40-year-old woman saying, ‘Look
at me, I’ve still got it,’" another friend
said, adding that Paltrow wearing hot pants at age 40
isn’t fooling anyone; it’s just reminding us that
she’s too old to be wearing hot pants.
tempting to think that she’s just doing what actresses
have to do to compete — try to stay sexy and relevant
in youth-obsessed Hollywood. (Remember the
midriff-baring Emilio Pucci gown she wore to the 2011
Emmys?) But it’s not just on the red carpet or press
event where she’s showing off her middle-aged,
a party the other night, a guest and fashion industry
vet gave me an earful about the spring fashion edit on
Paltrow’s online lifestyle newsletter Goop, in which
she models looks from fashion e-tailer Net-a-porter.
most questionable look, described on the site as
"Shorts, Dressed Up," has Paltrow exposing her
tanned tummy, belly button and all, in a white leather
tank top by Theyskens’ Theory, worn over a pair of
Maiyet orange, iridescent pleated shorts.
Gwyneth! We’re the same age! You have two small
children! You’re not going to wear that to take them
to school," my friend said.
what do you think? Is Paltrow rewriting the rules of
age-appropriate dressing? Or are there no rules, and
should women’s magazines such as Vogue and Harper’s
Bazaar give up doing annual issues devoted to age and
fashion and move on?