Today, when I work up, I did something I haven’t done for a very long time. I showered, shaved my legs, put on some make-up and jewelery then put on a dress. I haven’t worn a dress for about 2 years. Why? I don’t know. I think I’ve fallen into the routine that so many of us 40-somethings do: throw on something clean, comfortable and forget about it. But I think that there’s more to it than that.

I’m too old to be fixated on my looks anymore, but actually paying a little attention to my appearance is something I should do more. I’m still young enough to be attractive, so why do I downplay my looks? I think it’s partly because I’ve seen far too many women my age and older who have “Sixteen/Sixty-One” syndrome. What is that, you may ask? It’s when a woman looks sixteen from the back, and sixty-one from the front. Mutton dressed as lamb, etc. You know exactly what I’m talking about.

I dread seeing women my age that try way too hard to be sexy. I’d hate to be the bearer of bad news, but mini-skirts at crotch level and halter tops that expose drooping cleavage are not a good look for over 40s. You can’t morph into your teenage daughter, but why would you even want to try?

There’s nothing sexier than a woman with confidence and life experience that isn’t afraid to laugh at herself. You can tell that she loves life and has a real interest in other people that goes beyond wondering if she is attracting all the male attention in the room. When I see other women trying too hard, I feel pity for them. What an empty life to be so self-absorbed in the wrong area.

I prefer to be famous for my sarcastic sense of humor and quick wit than famous for the too-short skirt at the party, even if I do have fabulous legs (and I do if I say so myself!). Women my age are more fabulous than ever before, but I think that keeping a little mystery about their assets would make them even sexier. All the desperation of women wearing too few clothes in order to recapture their youth is pathetic. Ladies, take some care with your appearance, dress up, and take good care of yourself. But don’t emulate the “sixteen/sixty-ones.”