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The glamourous life of a socialite

Written by: on February 26, 2010

I can’t lie, a life as an ‘It’ girl has always been my preferred career choice. Strutting my enviably long, Louboutin-clad legs down Rodeo Drive whilst effortlessly clutching the latest Louis Vuitton that daddy gave me for my half birthday wouldn’t be a bad life really, would it? Spending day in, day out eyeing and buying absurdly priced fashion pieces at the infamous ‘Kitson boutique’ on Robertson Boulevard; popping into Giorgio Armani next door before joining Richard Branson’s daughter for a lunch-date at The Ivy to discuss next week’s Barbados plans; then treating myself to a rejuvenating facial on Melrose Avenue after such a productive and exhausting day, before finally returning to my customised Range Rover (which has never seen a range in its life) to speed off into the Hollywood hills. Sounds heavenly? Think again.

2010 has already seen two ‘socialites’ die of drug-related complications. The Queen of It, Paris Hilton, lost old, fellow classmate and ‘It’ girl, Casey Johnson who was found unclothed in the bedroom of her West Hollywood home. While only weeks ago, on our own side of the pond, 27 year-old Robin Whitehead – a member of the renowned Goldsmith family and friend of Pete Doherty (error) – died of a suspected drug overdose in her East London flat. But why? Why are drugs the answer for these ‘blissfully content’ socialites? What many of us envisage as a privileged life, can, in fact, lead to tragedy or merely a sad, lonely existence. Like an ‘It’ bag, an ‘It’ girl is in one moment and out the next. The Chloé Paddington handbag basked in its own ‘It’ glory in the year of 2002; however, those faithful ‘It’ bag followers will have swiftly swapped it for the quilted Marc Jacobs Stam bag in 2009. Get my drift? Socialites are generally socialites for a reason. They love to be loved, and becoming an old, Chloé Paddington is a call for drugs, alcohol, anorexia, and at the very worst death – anything to numb the pain.

Without putting you off your ‘It’ girl dream and without sounding too much like my great aunt Margery, it is my belief that TV shows and dramas, such as Gossip Girl, The OC, Skins, America’s Next Top Model and The Beautiful People (basically all the trash that we hate to love) all glorify the high-life and hence the life of a socialite. Money, connections and beauty are the prime ingredients in becoming a socialite, and in reality, it is those three elements of life that sadly many of us have now come to regard as a measurement of success.

But we only see the so-called ‘beautiful’ side of being an ‘It’ girl: the handbag, the ridiculously miniature dog inside the handbag, the hair extensions, the (enhanced) pouts, the (enhanced, again) bosoms, the flawless (botoxed) skin, the designer dresses…the list is endless. But do we ever question the unspectacular (normal) side? The side that quite simply makes their lives seem downright awful. The loneliness, the lack of purpose, the constant competition and need for attention, the possible contraction of multiple STIs (being attractive can have its negative points), and future liver, kidney and heart problems from the overindulgence of alcohol and drugs and the ‘under-indulgence’ of food. What a life.

I think it is safe to say that I would fail miserably as an ‘It’ girl. As a recent addition to the over 21 club, 10pm has now become a late night; I have invested in a more ‘sensible and sophisticated’ haircut; pre-drinks are in the form of caffeine in the library; a night out must be arranged at least two months in advance and Ring of Fire just sounds like a highly dangerous situation to be in. Although my ‘It’ girl days are over, it doesn’t mean that yours are too. Just think twice when you next pick up a classy tabloid. A life as a socialite is not for the faint-hearted.

The Boar
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University of Warwick
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Coventry
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