It’s gross, sexist, and totally commonplace that women are considered to depreciate in value as they get older. It’s an ironclad cliché that men age into silver foxes, while women can, at most, hope to become MILFs.
The global anti-aging industry is projected to grow into a $271 billion market by 2024. This probably has plenty to do with the uptick in workplace discrimation women face as they age, and the feeling of “invisibility” older women often talk about. But one woman, at least, seems distinctly untouched by the so-called ravages of age. Behold this tweet from 53-year-old actress Halle Berry celebrating the fact that she “finally got them”—“them” being a truly sweet set of six-pack abs.
Jesus Christ. Berry also posted about her abs on Instagram (the more appropriate platform for ab-related updates, in my humble opinion), sharing her excitement about the abs and tying them to her fitness routine for the film Bruised, a “mixed martial arts action drama” she directed and starred in. In her post, Berry elaborated on the nature of the abs (folks, they’re “ripped”) and encouraged her followers to set the bar high for themselves and put in hard work to achieve their fitness goals. (Should she also have encouraged us, from a health POV, to obtain a net worth of around $80 million thanks to a decades-long career as an actress and Hot Person? Perhaps.)
I’m sure having abs is really interesting and cool. It’s just that I thought (and hoped) that there would be some kind of expiration date on being preoccupied with what I look like.
Instead of worrying about my everlasting hotness, I am, to be honest, looking forward to lowering my standards for myself. During my transition from teenager to baby adult, I shed concerns about things like my arm hair and the shape of my mouth (??). As time marches on, I hope for even more indifference toward my physical self. Even though I’ll definitely still be beating myself up over “laugh lines” and overall sagginess, I do expect to let go of some of my current insecurities, and I really thought abs (as in, a distinct lack thereof) would be one of the first ones to go.
Most celebrities don’t wield their physical attractiveness as a weapon to make us normies feel ugly—they let corporate sponsorships and pliant media entities do that for them. Some, like Jameela Jameel, even overcompensate to the point that it’s cloying. But, like it or not, famous people are wildly influential when it comes to what the general population “should” look like, which means now that this abs-pectation is out in the world, I wouldn’t be surprised if the Good Morning America press cycle for how women can “get” and maintain abs well into their 60s has already been set in motion.
I don't mean people shouldn't be stoked on whatever body they choose to have. Berry can abs it up however she wants! I’ll just be taking the necessary precautions to keep her toned torso the hell away from my timeline and daydreaming about freedom from the shackles of hotness, whenever it may come.
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