5 Reasons Lisa Rinna is An Accidental Feminist

If you asked me about Lisa Rinna a decade ago, I would have thought “washed up soap actress with an addiction to Pilates and plastic surgery”.  

But she caught my attention recently with her silicone lip confessional and endorsement of Depends, the adult “diaper” for women with OAB (overactive bladder) and IBS (irritable bowel syndrome).  What’s important about this is that both conditions cause incredible shame for women and are shrouded in secrecy.  Lisa’s unexpected, somewhat glamorous association with Depends, starts to shed light and hopefully makes it somewhat OK to wet your pants a little (albeit I am disappointed she didn’t cop to being a sufferer herself).

Still, it’s refreshing for a Hollywood actress to be so….honest.  And personally, I find it helpful, especially as I slide into the 40 side of life.  

Which brings me to the 5 reasons I think Lisa Rinna is an under appreciated role model for women over 40:

1. She hustles.  I admire women who get it done.  Not sure what Harry’s been up to lately, but I think he’s riding her coat tails.   To some, her choices may seem like someone who is desperate for attention, but what I see is an entrepreneur that’s developed multiple streams of revenue to support her family.

2. She on the C list, but doesn’t care.  Let’s see a show of hands for how many of you are actually on the A list?  Even if you’re on the A list now, very few people stay there forever.  Lisa shows us it doesn’t matter what list you’re on because you’ve gotta survive, so stop pouting, get off your butt and play ball.  

3. Her age isn’t a big deal.  First, lets start with the fact that she’s 48 and a working actress in Hollywood.  It’s tempting to think actresses have uptown problems, but the reality is its psychologically crippling to live in a world where being over 115 lbs and 25 are considered career limiting moves.  Instead of being angry (justifiably), she turns it into opportunity by embracing the mom roles on Big Time Rush, Hannah Montana and Community which is smart because it keeps her top of mind.  

What’s more inspiring is that unlike so many other actresses (I’m looking at you 37-year-old Chelsea Handler) she’s never denied her being 48.  Better, she doesn’t even talk about it, which reduces being 48 to a non issue.

4. She’s talks about what others don’t.  By unapologetically sharing her lip injection gone wrong, she helped women avoid going down the same road, especially in this day and age of unscrupulous injectors.  By admitting this, she also began to pull the curtain back on the lengths actresses go thru to stay in the game.  Same with Depends.  Sure, many may smirk at what she’s doing, but trust me, in a few years OAB, IBS and Depends will be talked about as casually as we do tampons and periods.

5. She knows how to build her brand by fearlessly embracing risk.  Intentional or not, Lisa’s redefined herself as not just an actress, but an entertainer.  She takes big risks to stay relevant and gets right back up if she fails.  From her audacious Playboy spreads (6 months pregnant and then at 45), to her books, to her turn on Broadway in “Chicago” and “Dancing with the Stars”, Lisa shoes us that even if she doesn’t win a Tony or a Pulitzer, it’s OK because it’s all laddering up to her bigger universal plan.

It’s easy to dismiss what a former soap star can teach us about endurance, survival and being a woman.  But I think she’s got the right stuff, so I’m taking a page from Lisa’s playbook and thank her in advance for making the years ahead look like a lot of fun.

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