Life, you know it ain’t easy.
First, we successfully navigate the school years, the levels of lunch-box acceptability and “when will I get to be milk monitor” drama of infants giving way to the playground spats and the Tammy Girl training bras of teen life. Then we have our twenties, a time for experiencing new things and meeting new people, becoming curious about grown-up activities like sex, gender, travel, education and, oh yeah, the small matter of finding a job. Then, just as you think you’re in the clear, just as you think you may be starting to get the hang of this thing called life, it hits you, square between the eyes like a football to the head in a crowded playground: The Big Three-Oh.
Ah, being thirty. A life of cashmere and boredom... Hang on a minute. Cashmere and boredom? Yes, please!
Here’s my guide to turning 30 in both style and comfort:
After almost two decades of experimenting with bras (padded, wired, gel, lace, velvet - even corsets) and feeling everything from sexy to uncomfortable (mostly the latter), I’ve decided that enough is enough: this is the decade when I #freethenipple.
On a recent girls holiday I discovered that while not all women my age are perhaps as ready to burn their bras as I am, when my aforementioned areola were brought up on more than one occasion, most admired the sheer balls of going free. What’s more, I was particularly delighted when one of the girls bought her first non-wired bra - a beautiful grey set from Cos. Result!
I’m not saying burn your bars, girls, but I personally won’t be held together by wires or chafed by synthetic fabrics any longer. They’ve all been sent to the charity shop and replaced with more practical, non-wired options (my personal favourites being the ones from American Apparel and Cos and for special occasions La Perla or & Other Stories).
Juicing has been a running theme of my first year in the 30 Club, starting the decade with a trip to John Lewis to buy a juicer, only to give up three days into a five day cleanse when I got the shakes and started vomiting green water. I’ve since had a word with myself and now the spinach I grow is solely for homemade curries, salads and juices that accompany a healthy meal, not replace it (see also spiralizers - so much love for courgetti right now).
Not going to the gym
Spinning - or whichever-exercise-regime-you-are-currently-obsessed-with - is a way of keeping our bodies from heading south, as well as securing an hour where we can switch off and think about nothing but the things we want to think about (such as how when we get off this bike we’ll look exactly like Beyonce… probably).
I’ve previously been an expert at not going to the gym, signing up for annual memberships which I’ll use for about two weeks then spending the rest of the year making up excuses as to why I’m too busy to go (“the dog ate my gym bag” etc etc). Now, even though it’s a little more expensive, I join the gym for one or two months at a time, only when I know I can make it and only if I have an end goal to spur me on. This may not work for everyone but I now find that, when I’m not going, I do that little bit extra to make up for it, like getting off the bus a few stops early, taking the stairs instead of the lift or walking to the Chinese instead of driving.
You see, turning thirty should be embraced and not feared. You may not be in the intended career or living the type of life you’d envisaged but here’s a secret - not many of us are. Times have changed and lifetimes are getting longer, so there’s no real rush to have everything worked out. Take each day and new trend at a time and just enjoy being wiser (slightly) and more enlightened (ish) than you were at twenty. Listen to your own mind and your body and revel in the comfort of life’s little luxuries. Snuggling up in cashmere loungewear and being bored out of your mind? It sounds like heaven if you ask me.
Words: Abigail Carpe