Lanvin’s Fall 2012 ad campaign has been causing quite a stir in the fashion community. Designer Alber Elbaz choose real men and women, ranging in age from 18 to 80 to be photographed by Steven Meisel. Personally, I loved seeing images of older women modeling for Lanvin’s print ads. Tziporah Salamon (62) and Tajah Murdock (82) looked absolutely stunning. Seeing women like this makes me feel great about getting older. These images reminded me that it is possible to age gracefully.
Aging gracefully isn’t a matter much discussed in our society. Mostly because aging is considered taboo. In fact, altering the body through cosmetic procedures and surgeries has become so common place that the idea of natural beauty has been swept under the rug. I’ve talked about plastic surgery being common place
before. But as Lizzie Bramlett, what about the question of age
At 28, I supposed I don’t have much to worry about in terms of aging. But the thought of getting older is always somewhere in the back of my mind. Cosmetic procedures are not reserved to people of a certain age. Injectables, lasers, and surgeries are marketed to women even before they turn 18. The result is that many women look less like themselves and more like a plastic version of what a surgeon believes is beautiful. And this version of beauty rejects the aging process so much that it can distort the person’s real image.
I made my mind up a long time ago to stay as natural as possible. This means I try to take very good care of myself. I eat lots of vegetables, workout, drink tons of water, avoid sugar and processed foods, use sunscreen – the whole bit. As time goes on, I find that I like the way that I look more now than when I was 18 or 23. Recognizing this makes me wish that our society stopped whitewashing the aging process.
Lanvin was not the first to feature older women in ad campaigns. Looking at fashion history, you’ll see that couture was originally for mature women. It wasn’t until the 1960s that fashion was so dominated by images of youth. More recently, Rolex’s Spring 2009 campaign with Carmen Dell’Orfice is something I could never forget. Dell’Orfice was 78 at the time of the photo shoot, and I thought she was the most beautiful woman in the world.
A new documentary, Advanced Style, will explore the idea of aging gracefully more. It interviews some of the most fashionable women and celebrates that personal style is a lifelong journey. As we get older, we get better. I’ve included a link to the trailer below. The closing statement was my favorite:
Young women, you are going to be old one day. Don’t worry about it. Don’t sweat it. Don’t worry about getting older. Every era builds character.
I couldn’t have said it better myself!
Advanced Style Trailer