From thigh-high splits to midriffs, red-carpet fashion stylists love to dress their A-list clients in daring gowns that will put them firmly in the spotlight.Yet, at this week's Golden Globes Awards, it was covered-up women or a certain age who are outshone starlets young enough to be their daughters – females in their 50s and 60s who are in the middle of their lives. grown into their sense of style – unlike the young, try-hard millennial stars.

Julianne Moore, 58: Givenchy designer Clare Waight Keller's chic take on the tuxedo is teamed with a delicate column to deliver modern evening glamor that really works for Moore

Halle Berry, 52: Always one to step confidently into the spotlight, former Bond girl Berry wowed in a cleavage-baring, thigh skimming claret couture gown by Zuhair Murad

Sandra Oh, 47: It takes a confident woman, whatever her age, to wear a white evening gown, but this Atelier Versace stunner was a refined choice for the host of the show

Nicole Kidman, 51: Kidman knows her willowy frame is the perfect foil for slender column dresses that skim her silhouette. This svelte shape has become signature style – this time in a custom creation by Michael Kors

Julia Roberts, 51: Proving you can still be a Pretty Woman beyond age 50, Julia combines androgynous black tuxedo trousers with romantic tulle by Stella McCartneyThe standout was Julianne Moore, who turned 58 last month and went bold with her red-carpet attire, opting for a modern take on the white tux – a crossover halterneck bodice with satin lapels and co-ordinating beaded skirt by Clare Waight Keller for Givenchy, the designer of the Duchess or Sussex's wedding gown.Moore set the tone for the evening, with a queue or forty and fiftysomething women redefining contemporary glamor.Where once the passing of time is a stepping-out of the spotlight and handing the stars in the future of rising stars, the doyennes of the film and television industry are now in their prime – and proud to show it.'Hollywood witnessed a huge shift in the late Nineties, when actors were competing with supermodels for magazine covers and the pressure was on ow to dress, 'says fashion expert and author Bronwyn Cosgrave.

Allison Janney, 59: In a stunning fishtail gown by Christian Siriano plus drama pendant, Janney's smile showed that she was in her figure-hugging style

Penelope Cruz, 44: The Spanish actress looked every inch the superstar in a celestial-themed halterneck black and purple gown with glittering accentsThe likes of actresses Nicole Kidman, Charlize Theron, Penelope Cruz, Julianne Moore and Julia Roberts experienced that shift and accepted that dressing up was part of their job. That's why you see them at every event. "And the smart ones, such as Allison Janney, Moore and Kidman, always stick to colors and silhouettes that are tried and tested." That's where age trumps youth: those up-and-coming talents in Tinseltown may benefit from the glow of tender years, a midriff that is still two decades away from menopausal spread and triceps that are naturally toned from a smartphone, but they're still finding their fashion feet. Even with the help of experienced stylists, establishing a 'look' takes time and is about the chemistry between garment and wearer, as well as the simple aesthetics of a style.

Rowan Blanchard, 17: Teens should have fun with fashion, but walking through the red carpet dressed as a pink loo roll cover, even if it is by Marc Jacobs, is not going to secure A-list credentials for Disney darling Rowan

Lady Gaga, 32: The Valentino hyacinth hued gown is a steady improvement on her red-carpet form (meat dress, anyone?), But Lady Gaga's matching lilac hair is a step too far

Elsie Fisher, 15: In her bespoke velvet suit by Kenzo, with matching boots and bag, the Eighth Grade is in a good way.

Dakota Fanning, 24: This Armani Private column of duchess satin should be the epitome or serene style – but Dakota looks like she's auditioning for the Tin Man in a remake of The Wizard Of OzIt might be a nubile young actress looks stunning in a satin slip dress when she is standing in front of a mirror in the fitting room of a designer's studio.But ask her to walk confidently in it while being photographed from static pose.Look at Julia Roberts, 51, styled by Elizabeth Stewart in a pair of sassy black taffeta tuxedo trousers layered with a one-shouldered bodice and frothy flesh-toned tulle train by Stella McCartney – the perfect combination of elegance and easy insouciance. On a less self-assured woman, such a statement style could have been overwhelmed, but Roberts is so comfortable in her own skin that she simply shines. The truth is that, these days, the traditional dos and don'ts or fashion have been discarded and age is no longer a barrier to looking fabulous. After all, these older actresses are women of style and substance and they have the sartorial sense and superb talent to match.It's wonderful to see them walking with confidence and celebrating their achievements. As should all older women.

Jodie Comer, 25: The Killing Eve assassin seemed swamped by her ruffled tulle Ralph & Russo gown. Sadly, the British actress was more Victorian widow than 21st century starlet

Amber Heard, 32: Wearing a classic black-and-white prom design by Monique Lhuillier, Aquaman actress Amber Heard looked somewhat uncomfortably overwhelmed in the full-skirted gown

Emma Stone, 30: Emma's rather shapeless pale peach Louis Vuitton gown, embellished with silver beading, did not quite cut it for the opening event of Hollywood awards season