Belfast Telegraph

Romola Garai: I don't need to groom

Romola Garai feels she has the "choice" not to "groom" herself.

The Atonement star is known for her involvement in historical dramas and appears in a television series set in the 1950s.

The 30-year-old appreciates how much things have changed for women since then and knows she is lucky to have the freedom she does.

"I feel like I have the choice not to do any grooming now", she laughed to

"You don't have to conform to a very specific aesthetic today, whereas 1950s women definitely had to. But at the same time female audiences seemingly want you to be an idealised version or something that they can use to measure themselves against. It's an odd interaction."

Romola plays an intelligent woman with a high-profile job in TV show The Hour, meaning she had to embrace the '50s fashion in a specific way.

Whereas she can relate to some of her character's fashion choices, not all aspects of the costumes were comfortable.

"She tries to be very confident but not too sexy and at the same time has to be feminine. I think that contradiction is something contemporary women are still trying to work out," she explained.

"Our conception of 1950s underwear is a lovely vintage aesthetic but actually wearing stockings with no elastic and a girdle was heavy duty. It definitely makes you aware of how different that world was."

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