mutton dressed as lamb


Also found in: Acronyms.

mutton dressed (up) as lamb

A disparaging term for an older woman who tries unsuccessfully to look much younger or else finds herself attractive in the style of younger women. Primarily heard in UK. I don't know what she's thinking wearing a dress like that. She looks like mutton dressed as lamb!
See also: dress, lamb, mutton

mutton dressed as lamb

or

mutton dressed up as lamb

BRITISH
If you describe a middle-aged or old woman as mutton dressed as lamb or mutton dressed up as lamb, you mean she dresses in a style which is suitable only for a younger woman. I'm always careful to avoid looking like mutton dressed as lamb. Note: Mutton is the meat of an adult sheep, and lamb is the meat of a young sheep, as well as being the name of the animal itself.
See also: dress, lamb, mutton

mutton dressed as lamb

a middle-aged or old woman dressed in a style suitable for a much younger woman. British informal
Mutton occurs in various derogatory contexts relating to women. It has been used as a slang term for prostitutes from the early 16th century, for example, while the phrase hawk your mutton means ‘flaunt your sexual attractiveness’ or (of a prostitute) ‘solicit for clients’.
1988 Salman Rushdie The Satanic Verses Mutton dressed as lamb, fifty plus and batting her eyelashes like an eighteen-year-old.
See also: dress, lamb, mutton
References in periodicals archive ?
Rather than trying to look like a sophisticated older bride, Margaret was mutton dressed as lamb.
WE ALL think we know when we see mutton dressed as lamb in the human sense, but what of the origin of the condition.
There comes a certain age when if you're not careful, a lady can look like mutton dressed as lamb.
Despite just giving birth and despite the fact that she should look like mutton dressed as lamb at this stage of her life, she could have been Britney Spears when she gave a concert to a UK audience this week.
Brit Awarded as International Breakthrough Act, they were mutton dressed as lamb, middle-aged guys styled to look like some marketing bright spark's idea of a happening boy band.
Better now than risking looking like mutton dressed as lamb in our 50s.
In the last series, Miranda's neck appeared too long for her body and Sarah Jessica Parker often looked like mutton dressed as lamb, if you can when you've got hair like a demented poodle.
Rachel Hunter has hopefully at long last realised what a boring old fart her mutton dressed as lamb husband is.
IN the name of mutton dressed as lamb, Sinitta's latest witterings come courtesy of the category "Too Much Information".
A bit predictable but at least I won't looklike mutton dressed as lamb or -worse -like my mother.
being mutton dressed as lamb, I couldn't care less'' Fashion designer Zandra Rhodes, left
Don't know what appeared on the dinner menu, but I'm guessing it was mutton dressed as lamb.
It's a rare talent but as mutton dressed as lamb I'm not half baahed.
But Trinny and Susannah are the best friends we all wish we had because they will tell us if we are frumps, fashion victims or mutton dressed as lamb.