Earlier this year, the 46-year-old ended her relationship with comedian Pete Davidson, 26, and has most recently been linked to 22-year-old musician Goody Grace, who she is living with in Los Angeles during lockdown.
Speaking of the criticism she receives, Beckinsale said: “It can feel like a little bit of a political act to be a woman over 32 who’s having any fun at all.
“And by that, I don’t mean doing drugs and drinking and partying, because I never am, but being goofy, and going out, and not going, ‘Oh my God, I’m going to sit home and anticipate menopause while crocheting.’
She continued: “Unless you’re doing that, it somehow seems to be risqué, which is just ridiculous to me.”
The Serendipity star went on to compare how her lifestyle choices are reported in the media compared to those of men, adding: “I witness men constantly doing whatever they like, whether in relationships, or deciding to buy a motorbike, or getting a tattoo.
“It hasn’t been interpreted as, ‘why hasn’t he had more children?’ or ‘is he ever going to decide to become a parent?’ or ‘why has he had so many girlfriends?’.”
Beckinsale added that she believes many marriages would prove more successful if couples decided not to live together.
“I think more people would do well married if they didn’t have to live in the same house. Being married is kind of easy, but the living-with-the-person thing is a lot,” she said.
“I also think, for women especially, and it is generalising, but it’s common for us to mentally subjugate our needs to whoever else is in the room.”
This is not the first time Beckinsale has responded to criticism over her age.
In December 2019, the actor hit back at online trolls who said she is “too old” to share photographs of herself wearing a bikini on social media.
After sharing a series of pictures from a holiday to Mexico on Instagram, one person commented: “She’s too old… looking for attention.”
Beckinsale issued a lengthy response to the troll, stating: “I don’t know who has made you feel that if you get older you have no value, can’t be attractive or sexy or have a relationship with your body that isn’t only self-loathing.
“Are you aware that when you get the urge to accuse someone of something, especially someone you don’t know, or attribute an intention without ever having met the person, that the only thing really being achieved is revealing something about yourself or something you fear about yourself?”
The full interview with Beckinsale appears in the June issue of Women’s Health, on sale now.