Alexandra Shulman, the former editor of British Vogue, is being criticised by members of the fashion industry for calling 50-year-old model Helena Christensen ‘too old’ to wear a strapless bustier.
“We might like to think that 70 is the new 40 and 50 the new 30 but our clothes know the true story,” wrote the 61-year-old journalist and author, who was at the helm of the fashion publication for 25 years.
Shulman made the controversial judgment call in her Mail on Sunday column, in an opinion piece entitled, “I’m sorry Helena Christensen, you are too old to wear that”.
Shulman questions why “stylishly understated” Christensen wore a “tacky, black lace bustier” for fellow model Gigi Hadid’s 24th birthday party.
The piece also reflects on the perception of older women’s bodies as “disturbing”.
“When women’s bodies no longer serve any child-bearing purpose, we find flaunting them disturbing and slightly tragic. I don’t claim that this is fair. But it’s true.”
The supermodel appears to have indirectly responded to Shulman’s comments on her Instagram account, posting a photo of herself wearing the top and asking women to “continue to elevate and support each other”.
Fashion industry names including fellow supermodels Naomi Campbell and Linda Evangelista have since rushed to Christensen’s defence in the comments section below the post.
“She has no right or claims to be writing such a ridiculous article,” wrote Campbell. “I’ve known you 30 years and whatever you wear, you wear it well with class and dignity!!”
“She should be ashamed of herself. You are a goddess,” added Evangelista.
“You are BEAUTIFUL inside and out,” wrote current British Vogue editor Edward Enninful.
“U always do, my beautiful friend,” wrote actor Julianne Moore.
Fashion designer Roger Loayza also took to Instagram to say he was “disappointed” by Alexandra Shulman’s column.
Yahoo UK has contacted Shulman for comment.