Article by Ceri Wheeldon
We can all have style challenges in our 50s what with changing body shapes to consider. What we wear can say a lot about who we are, without saying a word. But what happens when a health issue gets in the way of your wardrobe – what if you feel you can’t wear the clothes that express who you really are?
“To me, clothing is a form of self-expression – there are hints about who you are in what you wear” – Marc Jacobs.
I attended a roundtable discussion group recently, hosted by global incontinence brand Depend, where a group of ladies including Lorraine, a Pilates instructor, Jo, a Teaching Assistant and TV presenter Nadia Sawalha shared their experience with incontinence and how it’s impacted their lives – including their wardrobes – and what impact this had on them being able to be their true selves.
For example, Jo, one of the participants in the roundtable, has always considered her style to be modern, smart, colourful and dynamic.
Incontinence had an impact on what I wore
“Incontinence did have an impact on what I wore in terms of not wearing lighter coloured clothes for certain activities, for example trampolining or jogging. I did this just in case I experienced any leakage and you could see it. I adapted by wearing dark coloured bottoms. I felt that my clothes didn’t always suit my style as I liked to wear a variety of different colours.
“Since trying Depend Active-Fit underwear I can now wear whatever colour clothing I like and take part in any activity with confidence that I will not experience any leakage,” said Jo.
Those who took part in the discussion said that accepting there was a need to consider using incontinence products was a big step. Research undertaken by Depend as part of a white paper indicated that 79% of women experiencing incontinence had not tried incontinence underwear, and 48% felt that the products were not meant for them.
I felt limited to wearing black
As a result, Nadia said that due to her concern about potential leaks, she found she was limiting herself to wearing only black on her bottom half. Nadia explained she found switching to Depend Active-Fit underwear, has not only given her the confidence to be more active and not limit her enjoyment of running, but also found that she could wear what she liked and was no longer limited to black leggings! The added bonus was that the fit of Depend Active-Fit had the same effect as wearing Spanx – it helped smooth her out in all the right places.
Nadia said, “I never dreamed I would ever use an incontinence product. To me, it represented a line I did not want to cross. I thought the products were for older people. Now I realise I could not have been more wrong. The underwear is discreet, comfortable. I can wear them under my fitness gear and black skinny jeans (provided I can get them over my bum!) and no-one can tell the difference between them and my regular knickers.”
Lorraine summed it up when she said, “I’m an individual, or a ‘one -off’ as my partner likes to say, and I don’t ever want to be defined by my age. It is totally how you ‘feel’ and this totally embodies Depend Active-Fit, as incontinence underwear does not define you – it just helps you keep living your active lifestyle”.
Join the conversation
Depend has created an online community so that women have a safe place to share their own stories, receive expert advice and friendly support from others who have been in their shoes. They can even order free sample products to try.
Find out more about Depend Active-Fit underwear and join the online community by visiting Depend.co.uk today.
Disclosure: Depend funded my attendance at their roundtable discussion.