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Pop Culture

Charlize Theron fires back at claims that she got 'bad plastic surgery'

She blames the rumors on Hollywood's double standard when it comes to aging.

Charlize Theron does not mince words.

No, Charlize Theron hasn’t had “bad plastic surgery.” Like many women (scratch that, make it all women, all people in fact), her face simply looks different as a byproduct of growing older.

"My face is changing," the “Atomic Blonde” actress told Allure. “People think I had a facelift. They're like, 'What did she do to her face?' I'm like, 'B----, I'm just aging! It doesn't mean I got bad plastic surgery. This is just what happens.'"

While Theron doesn’t condemn cosmetic procedures, what she “despises” is a societal double standard where “men kind of age like fine wines and women like cut flowers.”

This isn’t the first time Theron has used that analogy to highlight the glaring discrepancy between how we collectively allow men to gain value as they grow older, while women are given an invisible expiration date.

Back in 2012 for a Q&A with WWD, she said, “It’s like we wilt for some reason. And men are like fine wines — the older they get, the better they get,” adding that the misconception is “such a lost opportunity because that’s when I think women are really in the true moment of their sensuality.”

That latter point is one echoed by several other fellow actresses of a similar age and beyond, such as Kate Winslet, Andie MacDowell and Jane Fonda, who have all shared anecdotes of feeling more confident, more sexy and overall more in their element during life’s later chapters.

And while ageism certainly affects both the sexes, there’s no denying that the beauty industry specifically profits from the notion of women “wilting” after 30—and that’s being generous, coming from someone who was already up-to-date with all the anti-aging trends at the ripe old age of 23.


At the same time, society has also taken to shaming women (female celebrities in particular) for “getting work done”—often labeling them as vain, superficial, insecure, fake, etc. It’s a precarious place to be in, being either shunned for growing older or lambasted for trying to avoid it.

America Ferrera said it best in her "Barbie" monologue: “It’s literally impossible to be a woman.” That goes for beauty icons and regular folks alike.

As for Theron, her changing face is seen as a good thing—doubles standards be damned. What she does take umbrage with is how it’s affected her fitness.

“More than my face, I wish I had my 25-year-old body that I can just throw against the wall and not even hurt tomorrow. Now, if I don’t work out for three days and I go back to the gym, I can’t walk. I can’t sit down on the toilet,” she told Allure.

Stars—they really are just like us.

Read Theron’s full interview with Allure here.