Ok I’m going to come right out and say it. I have a problem with Helen Mirren modelling for L’Oreal. Not because I don’t think it’s a great idea for the beauty brand to use an older model and not because I don’t think Helen Mirren looks fabulous – because she does, no-one can deny that. The 69 year old actress follows Julianne Moore and Jane Fonda in her association with L’Oreal and said “I am truly delighted to become an ambassador and join such an impressive group of high-achievers”.
All good there then and the fact she has insisted that none of her images be re-touched is also a plus. She also said ” I hope I can inspire other women towards greater confidence by making the most of their natural good looks”. And here’s where I start to feel a little uncomfortable, because call me a cynic or a regular reader of the DM side column of shame (and we all know not to believe everything we read on there) but I really don’t believe Helen Mirren hasn’t had work done on her face.
There I’ve said it – I have disrespected the Queen – which I know is a little bit like saying you don’t think Ricky Gervais is funny (which incidentally I don’t think he ever was after the Office) or you didn’t like Breaking Bad (which I did).
Don’t get me wrong I don’t have a problem with women having cosmetic procedures – each to their own and as India Knight said in her wonderful book In Your Prime, let’s try to be a bit more sisterly about this whole issue. But I do have a problem with celebrities presenting themselves as “natural” icons for the older woman, when they have clearly had work. How can we ever change perceptions and embrace ageing positively when we are bombarded with unrealistic images of growing older.
I may be wrong as Ms Mirren may well be as natural as the day she was born – but I very much doubt it. Yes she still has some lines, but take a look at images of her pre 2013 (when she is alleged to have had work) and her skin is tighter and smoother and her jaw line firmer now, than it was then – or maybe she just has an incredibly good make up artist?