Don’t call me a gran bod

— by Alyson Walsh


I was hoping if I ignored the term ‘gran bod’ it might go away. But no. The dad bod bandwagon-jumping label keeps pinging into my inbox. This weekend: The Top 10 Gran Bods starring Helen Mirren, Madonna and Elle (The Gran Body) Macpherson. Basically, a list of women over-50, rated on how they look in swimwear. How very retrograde. And not all of the women are grandmas, they’re just over-50 and like to wear swimwear on the beach. I guess that makes me a gran bod, too. I may not have any children (let alone grandchildren) but I’m over-50 and I wear a bikini

Badie Winkle-image-m-29_1428615425515

Photos: Baddie Winkle for Dimepiece

What a shame. The fashion brand JD Williams, who coined the clunky phrase, intended it to be an age-positive message. Aiming to celebrate women who are ‘fit, fabulous and over-50’ – but it feels like they’ve slightly missed the point. Describing older women in swimwear as gran bods is a bit like when a Hollywood actress goes from being someone’s love interest to someone’s mum overnight. Not a good thing. There is nothing wrong with being a grandma; there is nothing wrong with being a mature woman in a swimming cossie on the beach. I’m all for celebrating age and refusing to be invisible, just don’t call me a gran bod.

The JD Williams/You Gov national survey found that 94% of women aged 50+ feel younger than their age and body confidence in 50+ women is at an all-time high. Now that is a good thing. Hooray!

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I was hoping if I ignored the term ‘gran bod’ it might go away. But no.