With our society’s unending obsession with youth, it may be hard to believe that three very-much-in demand-models are all seniors. Is this a good sign for the future? Hopefully, it means that companies are finally recognizing the spending power of baby boomers with over ten thousand turning 65 each day. It wasn’t that long ago, as we pointed out in a recent FirstLantic blog, that actress Anne Bancroft played a middle-aged woman in The Graduate and she was only 35 years old! Well, thank goodness times-are-a-changing and 70 may just be the new 40! So, let’s meet three women who are breaking the mold and aren’t letting age hold them back in any way.
Maye Musk, 70
Yes, she is the mother of Elon Musk of Tesla and SpaceX. But she also has two other children, two master’s degrees and 229,000 Instagram followers and ran a successful nutrition business for 45 years. In fact, Musk still regularly gives presentations as a nutrition expert to corporations, associations, hospitals and universities. A lover of world culture, she has traveled and lived in numerous countries including Canada and South Africa but she now calls Los Angeles home Two years ago at age 68, she became a model for CoverGirl joking that is only took her 50 years to become a model. And she does not apologize for her few wrinkles but states proudly that she has had “no work done and she models her age”.
Carmen Dell’Orefice, 88
Dell’Orefice is one of the longest working models in the world having appeared on the cover of Vogue at only 15 years old. She was born in New York and had a volatile childhood entering foster care for a while when she was very young.
However, her fortune changed when she was only 13 and was discovered on a bus by the wife of a photographer. Known for her statuesque frame, beautiful grey hair and hazel eyes, her career has spanned over 70 years and she even modeled for Salvator Dali when she was only 14.
Iris Apfel, 97
Iris Apfel can add model to her long list of occupations now that she signed her first contract with IMG models at 97. She started her career at Women’s Wear Daily and then ran a successful textile business with her husband (of over 65 years) all while becoming well known as a fashion icon. She was even honored in 2005 by The Costume Institute and the New York Metropolitan Museum of Art with an exhibition about her style entitled Rare Bird: The Irreverent Iris Apfel. Born in Queens, New York, Apfel has never let age stop her. In fact in 2012 at age 90, she was a visiting professor at University of Texas at Austin and she still regularly consults and lectures about both style and fashion. And in 2013, she was named as one of the best dressed women over 50 by The Guardian.
So, as the saying goes, age is really just a number and all three of these women prove that is more than true. Not only did they defy the odds with long and successful careers, but they are also proving that real beauty lasts a lifetime.