Ankle Bracelets for Women After 40 – Stylish or Silly?

ankle bracelet

This sends a sexy message that is not appropriate for work!

Hi Deb, 

Will you please tell women that ankle bracelets have no place in a professional work environment? 

I don’t know how many times I’ve seen this…horrible.

Thanks, Shawn

Hi Shawn,

I couldn’t agree more. Ankle bracelets are inappropriate at work.

Wearing an ankle bracelet during business hours, no matter what your age, will destroy your credibility.

Ankle bracelets, or anklets as they are called,  are a distraction at work. They send out a sexy message , so don’t expect to be taken seriously!

ankle bracelet

Save it for the beach

What about in the evening with a cocktail dress? – Personally, I feel they look dated.  If you try to wear them over nylons they look really silly.
ankle bracelet

What  about in summer with shorts or a bathing suit? If can see if you are away on vacation somewhere tropical, you want to wear on to the beach,  but for everyday wear back home, they aren’t in style and don’t look chic on a grown up gal.

Agree, disagree? I welcome all opinions.



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Comments, Feedback, & Opinions:

  1. Carol Sullivan says:

    There is absolutely nothing wrong with a professional woman wearing an anklet. I was an assistant secretary to a Vice President & in-house legal counsel and wore anklets that were in good taste and NEVER was there a negative comment. However, women in the office were not allowed to wear outrageous jewelry that made them look cheap, nor were the women allowed to wear strong or offensive perfume. Clients could be allergic to the aroma of the perfume but never allergic to an anklet. If a woman can wear even a simple gold necklace that would bring attention to her female assets what is the difference if she wears a simple gold anklet? NOTHING! After all it is not the 1800’s,

    • It’s quite shocking that since writing this post I have received a number of angry, aggressive comments from ankle bracelet wearers- some of which I have had to edit.(Saying what you think is one thing, but I don’t allow nasty on the blog.)
      I’m not here to dictate what you should and shouldn’t wear. That’s up to you, but a reader asked my advice, and I gave it.
      Ankle bracelets distract from your authority and do not indicate executive level.

      Cheers, Deborah

  2. actually female real natural beauty starts from her feet that was fact….so beautiful sexy attractive dark painted female toes with elegant attractive anklets….pretty sensual female feet hope to see more images with thanks please

  3. Debra Hensley says:

    Totally disagree…..You consider an anklet ‘distractive’ ?? Are earrings distractive or a watch, maybe an oversized belt, too high of a heel…..really ??? They are no more distractive then any of the before mentioned and who decided that an anklet was for young women? Your attitude is making you old. Lighten up, have fun, be free…. you are only as old as you feel !!

  4. diane walker says:

    Please! This is 2014. Why not. It is a piece of jewelry. No different than a bracelet on your arm. Its a matter of taste.

  5. Hello ladies! Today in United States some women wear what they think looks appropriate, not what others dictate is fashionable!
    I will not comment about the work place; only about general attire. I used to make the world’s prettiest ankle bracelets; and sold them to all types of women. Please *note, I said types of women, not class of women! Types can be rich, poor, executives, unemployed, etc….
    Think back older ladies, in the 50’s and 60’s many women were of the old *mindset, that having your ears *Pierced was barbaric!!! Also that women/children with pierced ears were tribal (relating to African traditions). I am proud to say, Yes African women had pierced ears;not for style, but custom.
    Also American woman were of thr mindset that only Common women wore them! Ladies, I have 1 question for you, especially those who are not ankle bracelet fans:

    Do you have your ears pierced? LOL?

    Respectively submitted
    Nia

    *Ladies, wearing ankle bracelets is beautiful!

  6. Robin H says:

    I found this so amusing. I turned 40 last year and am always flattered when I get compliments on how young I look. I’ve learned age is a stupid number & I’m not trashy if I wear an anklet and have a simple tattoo on my shoulder that is tastefull and only revealed when I wear strapless gown to our annual Marine Corps Birthday ball. I get compliments on that tattoo always. Life is NOT a dress rehearsal. People should wear their best perfume even to the post office. Use your best china on a Wednesday night. Wear that anklet you love today. Tomorrow may not come.

  7. Brenda Thurman says:

    I came across this article as I was searching for a great ankle tattoo design. I was shocked to see the article was written by a woman. I have a bachelor’s degree in Social Work and a minor in business administration. I have a Master’s in Social Work. I work for the federal government and make an amazing wage. I served in the ARMY on active duty for 5 years. I raised 2 children who are productive citizens and amazing people AND I’ve been married for 15 years! I work my ass off and believe in having the right to do whatever to my body including getting an ankle tattoo AND exposing it in my office environment. If anyone thinks it’s trashy…I could careless. Believe me those degrees on the wall will ensure I’m taken serious. I choose to be a role model for women all around me. Ladies don’t have to fit in a box; they should feel free to express themselves how they choose.

    • Hi Brenda,
      You are absolutely right. Everyone is different. There are no rules, only preferences, so if you enjoy having an ankle tattoo and it makes you feel good, then that’s your choice.

  8. Lol, I am 48 and just found this site while browsing for a cool ankle bracelet tattoo idea. I feel young and free spirited, would never be considered trashy. I am a nurse, dating an internist, and he went with me to get my first ( and so far only) tattoo when I was probably 45 and he was very encouraging though it was my idea. The majority of nurses I work with have at least one tattoo. In fact, one of them has a beautiful and dainty ankle bracelet and I have wanted one since I first saw it. Otherwise, I would never get a tattoo in a visible place. Mine is well hidden but has meaning for me. I say “to each his own” and let our fashion be a reflection of our inner selves. No offense to you ladies. You are both beautiful in your own respect, but I will feel stuffy and stifled in your fashion.

  9. Just purchased an anklet at age 49. It is very dainty with sea class beads. I bought it for vacationing at the beach, which is very casual. I think it depends on where you wear it. My opinion of the pic with of the black shoe with the diamond ankle bracelet above is that it is gorgeous at any age! There are a lot of Baby Boomers who would agree.

  10. I tumbled on this website by accident but no sure who died & made you fashion police….I am 61, have a tiny tiny plain gold chain ankle bracelet and think it looks fine, only wear mine in the summer with sandals…..just my opinion mind you!

    • HI Jill,
      You are correct, I have certainly have not crowned myself part of the “fashion police”! I pride myself on NOT saying what you should or should not do. However I DO give my personal opinion. If you like your ankle bracelet I say, go for it! Just because I choose not to wear one does not mean you shouldn’t.

  11. Carrie de Haas says:

    Hi sweet Lady!

    I didn’t realize that ankle bracelets are a “no”.
    Mine is simple gold links with a very small dangling heart.
    I’ve worn it with dark blue jeans, and black slacks
    with flats. It gives me a feeling of being a bit
    naughty, because I don’t have piercings ( except ears)
    or tattoos.
    I’m going to keep wearing my delicate ankle bracelet but
    I love hearing the comments, and all the fashion tips.

    Thanks, Carrie

  12. Emma Philips says:

    Glad I don’t live in Delaware! I love my anklets and will always wear them, at home, out to dinner, to work, to the beach… NO ONE will tell me whether I can or can not wear them :-)

    To further stir the pot, I will wear two or three together! Today I have a very delicate gold tracer chain around each ankle with court shoes and a trouser suit for work. Don’t like that? Tough!

    Seriously, do we need to be told what to wear all the time by ‘fashion experts’? Think for yourselves people!

  13. Wow! Who makes these rules anyway? I can’t believe people are arguing over a body adornment! I am an artist and all for self expression. I also have lived long enough to see fashion come and go. The big picture is fashion does come and go and people should do what they want especially in a casual environment. I can understand a few rules for professional dress, but outside the office, as long as it isn’t vulgar, all bets are off! If ankle bracelets are “out of style”, than this should make people into the “retro”look happy! It’s all relative. I see nothing wrong with people having fun with jewelry. There will always be “snobby” people out there trying to make rules for everyone else!

    • HI Kathy,
      Oh no…I certainly do NOT want to come off as snobby and I’m not trying to make any “rules”! Here at Fabulous After 40 I just try to help readers what is currently trending and what is not.
      Fashion is an ever changing and evolves. Styles and trends come and go. As we age…it gets harder to wear trends, so I’m here to help you wade through it.
      Everyone is different and you can take or leave my opinion…but I have to be honest.
      If you want to buck the trends and do your own thing…go for it.

  14. I’m 66 I wear an ankle bracelet and have worn one from the time I was a teen and when I’m 80 I will still wear one. Believe me 1950′s was time when we wore ankle bracelets. I have an aunt in her 80’s that still wears hers. Their beautiful why shouldn’t we wear them. We are very conservative women. I do not wear one in the winter to cold can’t see them anyway.
    I have also worn a cross all my life and once had a friend say crosses are only for wearing in church. Have no idea wear she ever got that idea.

  15. I am a 34 yr.old and also a new mother. I have an extremely professional and demanding career and my husband is a doctor. I am free of any tatoo’s and am somewhat on the conservative side. I completely disagree with anyone who thinks that an ankle braclet is silly or tacky at 40, 50, or 60 yrs. of age. I also agree with Dave up top when he said that anyone with that type of attitude that thinks it’s tacky or silly has a 1950’s mentality. I love to see women at any age take care of herself and know how to have fun. It’s always the woman who don’t feel that something is age appropriate that ruin it. Since when was having fun or living on the edge for young woman? Now that’s silly. All I know is that I always loved seeing my grandmother with her freshly polished pink toe nails and her ankle braclet but then again, maybe I’m just tacky!

    • Hi Molly,
      if it makes you feel good, wear it! For me, it’s a novelty thing for the beach. Why don’t you send me a picture of yourself with an ankle bracelet and my readers can weigh in?
      Cheers, Glam Gal Deborah

  16. Just what you need another male’s opinion. I think ankle bracelets are very sexy AND stylish on the right set of legs no matter what the age. Toe rings on the other hand should be banned and the person who came up with the idea shot. I think style is 50% personal like and 50% others perception. No foot jewelry of any kind should not be worn to the work place.

  17. Wow, really? (since you’re into trends). Men most definitely keep track! We full well know what is attractive and appropriate on our partners at and away from work, and we don’t take those cues from models on magazine covers. I believe ladies who spend so much of their time and money adorning their bodies with makeup, hair styles and colors, jewelry and clothing, often do so to be appealing to men, and are better served by being advised to ignore your sacred trends. Fashion isn’t science, it’s art, and art is subjective.

  18. My gorgeous 40 year old extremely respected and successful executive wife wears both a dainty ankle bracelet and toe ring, and has for years. I found this website by accident actually searching for new versions of both for her. I, as others here I notice am a bit surprised by your opinions being offered up as fashion dogma. You are certainly entitled to your interpretation of fashion trends, but since you encourage comments I will say that I find both items of jewelry extremely feminine, sexy and appealing.

    • Hi Roger,
      Yes many men do love and find them sexy. My comment is that the reality is, in today’s world ankle bracelets are not in style, especially in a professional environment. Men don’t keep track of what is in or out, that is our job. I’m not trying to be the fashion police…If a woman wants to wear an ankle bracelet or toe ring, that’s her business. I’m just reporting trends. You are probably searching for ankle bracelets because they are no where to be found in stores these days or on models in fashion magazines. You will find them on surfer girls and the younger set and those women who wants to do their own thing, which is perfectly fine.

  19. I hate to say it, being a jewelry designer and all, but I think ankle bracelets look tacky… except when I’m doing my hippie thing in the summer at the beach.

    Then I have some colorful seed beaded beauties that seem to just complete the look.

    So, overall, I guess there’s a time and a place for them.

  20. I Speak The Truth says:

    The women who think it’s looks tacky , most likely have legs like tree trunks and feet like an ostrich’s !!!! An attractive well built, well groomed woman over 40 can pull it off … If you’ve got legs and feet that look like a 400 pound , old fat retired linebacker, then No !! PLEASE dont wear one !!!!

  21. Lorena says it all. If an anklet looked great on a woman (or girl) in the ’50s, one will look great on a woman today. Anyone who finds all anklets “horrible” and “tacky” has the problem, not women who wear anklets. Are some anklets tacky? Of course, but so are some bracelets, necklaces, skirts, pants, shoes, hats, hosiery, etc. And if an anklet is tacky, what about tattoos, to say nothing of piercings on a woman’s head (and in other places best not thought about)? I agree that more than one ankle bracelet is excessive, as are large, clunky ones, and might suggest “gypsy.” Plastic beads, strings, ropes, and so on are best left to youngsters and might look foolish on older women. However, a delicate, gold or silver chain around a woman’s ankle is simply an adornment. Some anklets of lesser quality are cheap, but some, perhaps with a diamond, charm, heart, or engravable plaque, can cost upwards of $200: they are not categorically cheap. I have met many women of all ages who wear an ankle bracelet — some year round, some infrequently — and almost all are educated, intelligent, honorable women. If you find anklets so shocking, stop looking at women’s feet. A good quality, feminine anklet looks great; it is jewelry; it signifies nothing other than that its wearer wants to wear it, and perhaps has a bit more class than those who argue about what anklets mean.

  22. I’m from Puerto Rico. My point is that it doesn’t matter where in the world you live if you like wearing anklets. It is a matter of personal style. Who cares if it is in fashion or not or if your 8 or 80 years old, you just wear them if you like them. I know I do. You need to lighten up in America because you are all talking like a bunch of women from the Victorian Era. You want to be so proper all of the time that you pass as uptight people who don’t know how to enjoy little things like wearing stuff just because they make you happy. Should learn from other countries.

  23. Dear Glam Girls,
    My opinion is that ankle bracelets are a waste of your jewelry dollars. With so many beautiful styles of jewelry available to accent your wardrobe in all price ranges, this category of accessories fails to deliver my credo that jewelry inbues the wearer with Beauty, Grace and Power.

  24. Hi there from a HOT KwazuluNatal in South Africa!

    In our part of the world, ankle bracelets are fine on the beach with a sarong and bikini, but never for the work place. In fact, in our part of the world, they are associated with low class people or even hookers! although zulu beaded ankle bracelets on the beach are fine. Have a great weekend, :)

    Linda

  25. Actually I dont accessorize my saris traditionally-I wear extremely modern saris with little or no jewellery, and think the styles can be mixed with great effect. I am much more likely to wear my Indian jewelry and accessories (shawls) with western clothes than the other way round. However, I dont agree that ankle bracelets are simply too dread to think of for women over 40-it all depends on how you wear them. Theres no need to look like a refugee from a Renaissance Fair. I live in CA-vey casual-I might not wear them to the office but I might well wear one on the weekend without feeling I am dressing too young. I have to admit I dont care for toe rings, but thats because to me they are too “South Indian Traditional Married Lady” and terribly dowdy. I find your site full of helpful tips, and enjoy reading it, but I have pretty much given up on Western fashion-as I said- it has little to offer women our age -this despite working with a wardrobe consultant! I think its a real issue. Oh well. Theres my 5 cents.

  26. I am going to chime in and agree that anklets do not belong in a business office. My opinion is that is for younger women if worn, although my 2 daughters 18 and 22 would not wear an anklet….only because the Glam Gals are right, they are not the style now.

    • Hi Benita,
      Good to hear from you.. this subject has hit a nerve but I’m standing strong on my position about this one. Thanks for backing me up. I have a 21 year old niece and she would not wear an anklet either… it is just not “cool” these days.

  27. I have to disagree. Women in my country have been using them for ages. Doesn’t matter their ages. It is just a matter of taste. I agree with Dave,a discreet, silver or gold chain anklet looks elegant even for work and doesn’t attract a lot of attention than a chunky anklet would do.

  28. The anklets may not be professional, however, I feel they are very feminine and love seeing them in the party or casual environments. Who said jewelry had to stop at the wrist?
    This is the first time I have disagreed with your fashion advise. I think that is a pretty good record.

  29. I have to disagree with you also on this. I live in FL where the weather calls for wearing shors, capris, skirts or dresses almost all the time and I love to wear anklets all the time. I have several that I change depending on what I am wearing and where I am going. I have a plain leather one that I wear (that my son, who is now serving in Afghanistan, gave me) that I wear with my casual shorts and t-shirts or tanks. Then I have a simple silver chain of Mickey Mouse heads (you can barely tell that is what they are) that I always wear when I go to Disney World. And I have a plain gold chain that I wear when I am more dressed up. I do not however wear one when the weather gets cold enough or if I go somewhere that I have to wear panty hose or tights – because I don’t feel that looks appropriate for my age, I am 44.

  30. Bracing for the slam but I think ankle bracelets (and thick ol’ french manicures– think Kate Gosselin) have got to go. I live and work in San Francisco and you just don’t see the professional women wearing them. If you really want to wear them, restrict them to the beach.

  31. Guilty! lol I like wearing one in Florida with shorts or capris! Whoopsie! lol

  32. I own a jewellery boutique, but would never wear an ankle bracelet. In fact my boutique demographic is women from 30+, but I have no desire to sell them either!

    I don’t agree with Dave either that they add femininity. They send out quite a different message. Lets not forget why they were originally worn in the Western world ;-)

    Totally agree that anklets look really trashy unless your are young, nubile 16 year old.

    (Just my humble opinion!)

  33. I still think a delicate anklet is appropriate in any situation, even with a business suit. I am a Mary Kay Director and many of my colleagues wear them as well. I dress very tastefully every day, and look nothing remotely like a stripper. Ladies, I am talking about a 7 & 1/4 inch fine strand of 14 kt. gold,not a tube top, day-glo fishnets and platform shoes… Good Lord, this is the most uptight, condescending fashion advice I’ve ever heard of. And regarding the question, what area of the country do I live in, perhaps you expected me to say ” Mayberry RFD”? Apparently in Delaware, only those whose last names are “Clampett” would wear such “trash”.

  34. I’m in Los Angeles, and many women wear toe rings, so much so that I think most people take them in stride (not that you would see them inside shoes or even in peep-toe styles). My 70-years old mom wears them, as do almost all her friends. I haven’t heard comments about toe rings in a long time. I don’t really notice subtle wedding bands that much, either. Haven’t seen anklets for a very long time, but I’m sure they’re out there. Tattoos are very big here, on folks of all genders and ages.

  35. Hi,

    I am Indian, but have always lived in the West-I also have a very high-status professional job and I have to manage 2 wardrobes with different esthetics. As far as I am concerned I wouldnt wear an anklet with a suit or work attire but I dont much like the condemnatory attitude-they are FINE with saris, salwars etc, all of which I wear, and part of the vast repertoire of Indian jewelry. Frankly, at 55 I have given up on Western fashion-it has little to offer women of my age, and have gone back to wearing saris for pm events, of which I have to attend many as part of my job. The sari has modernized beautifully (I like Satya Paul), and is a lot more fun to wear than what I can find at the mall.

    • Hi Maharani,
      LOL..my goodness now we are on an entirely different topic. A sari is a style of dressing that is totally different. I would not suggest you try to apply our “western” tips to traditional dress. You say that you don’t wear ankle bracelets to work when you are in western attire, so it sounds like we are on the same page! I would expect you to accessorize your sari in a traditional way… ankle bracelet(s) and all!

  36. I have to agree with Deborah – I don’t wear ankle bracelets, though I love jewelry in general, because I don’t feel they have a place in the office or the professional environment.

    They draw attention to your feet – in a professional environment, you want the focus to be on your face, what you are saying, your ideas and your experience. Drawing unnecessary attention to your feet may also open the door for someone to make an inappropriate or too-personal comment regarding your accessories.

    Better to keep it conservative in the office / professional environment – there are plenty of other ways to express your personality!

  37. Hi there,
    I live in Philadelphia , Pa near South Street, where anything goes! : )

  38. I usually agree with the advice on this blog, but I totally disagree regarding ankle bracelets. I was very surprised that you consider them tacky. I think they are feminine and sexy. I am 52, 5′ 6” weigh 103, and I have always thought ankle bracelets look wonderful on slender legs. I have a simple, elegant one I wear in summer months with bare legs, and I love the look and the way it makes me feel. Just a subtle accent of feminity. Note that I said a “simple” ankle bracelet, not a jingly, belly dancer number.

    • Hi Ann,
      Thanks for writing in. We just have a difference of opinion on this one! Also, I was wondering where you live? In some areas of the country they might be more in fashion?
      I can understand that some perceive them to be feminine and I can see, yes, some are pretty, however in a corporate environment they undermine your credibility, no matter if you have lovely legs or not. They’re also not in style for outside work.

  39. That’s okay- you guys stay in the Eisenhower era.

  40. Yeah, I’m a guy. I’m 49 and I make jewelry as a hobby. I know several ladies in their forties and fifties who are in management and have to do the pantsuit thing and try not to appear too feminine for business purposes. They do, however, wear anklets that are very subtle and add a touch of femininity to the more masculine style they feel they need to wear in order to be taken seriously by the men. I think seeing a petite chain or strand of small beads around an ankle is very feminine and quite sexy, IF it matches her overall look. These ladies I know view it as an individual statement of non-conformity. So, yes, I do think your attitudes are a bit prudish and outdated. And as in all things, moderation regarding all jewelry works wonderfully.

    • So Dave, we get your point and we are all for non-conformity, but our goal is to “report” what is in or out of style. Just for clarification, we feel that ankle bracelets on women over 40 make them look like they are trying to dress too young. My 20 year old daughter would not even wear an ankle bracelet, they are just not “cool” to wear right now. Moreover, they are especially not appropriate or professional in the workplace at any age. But, keep checking back, we will keep you posted when they come back in style!

  41. I totally disagree. A fine gold or silver chain anklet worn with the right combination of shoes, skirt or pantsuit can be look very feminine and not tacky at all. You ladies may be 40’s, but your attitudes are 1950’s.

    • Wow, Sounds like we really hit a nerve!
      Question: This comment is signed Dave. Are you a man writing this? Perhaps men and women feel differently about ankle bracelets. Either way we welcome everyone’s opinion. Fashion should be totally individual and fun!

  42. What about toe rings? I put them in the same category as ankle bracelets. A friend of mine in her 50’s always wears one with sandals. I suppose if your pedicure is great, because it draws attention to your toes, but I always equate them with teenagers. Your opinion?

    • Hi Amy,
      Thanks for mentioning that… Well, if you are really into the bohemian look and are very artsy… then it would be ok… (def. better than an ankle bracelet) That being said, neither of us Glam Gals would ever wear a toe ring, it is not our style.

  43. Definitely agree leave them with I dream of Jeannie where they belong…. especially for the over 40’s