The phrase was popularized in a 1979 book by the psychotherapist Lillian B. Rubin, "Women of a Certain Age: The Midlife Search for Self," in which midlife spanned 35 to 54. Reached in San Francisco, Dr. Rubin, whose book indicates she is now in her early 70's, was surprised to learn of the long English history of the phase because "it has a long history in French (femmes d'une certaine age), where it refers to women of fortyish and thereabouts who are able to initiate boys and young men into the beauties of sexual encounters. The early use in English seems to be about spinsterhood, but the French meaning has nothing to do with marriage." In French, the phrase has erotically or sexually charged overtones. "It comes from a society where sexuality is freer," Dr. Rubin notes, "and more understood as an important part of human life."
It's nice to know that at least in certain parts of the world that a woman isn't past her sexual prime. Here in America if you're not a young 20 something, lean and have a figure like a boy with boobs you're considered over the hill. Poo on that! We over 50 women have a lot of life left in us: we're vivacious, sexually active (even with all our lumps, bumps, wrinkles, sagging boobs, dragging butts and love handles), got jobs and money of our own and now we Baby Boomers are outnumbering all the other age groups. So look out world, it's our time to shine!
I've never lied about my age and I'm not starting now. 52 and proud of it Y'all! Hell, being over 50 damned sure beats the alternative! Who knows, I might even go out and find me a trophy guy. If the men can do it why can't we women? Or as the French would say, "Vive La femmes d'une certaine age"