Anyone who thinks 70-year-old women can’t be cover stars clearly hasn’t met Debbie Harry. Nylon magazine just featured the musician on their June/July cover.
Nylon — aka the super trendy fashion and culture magazine — is always one step ahead of the style trends. They describe their typical reader as “free-spirited style lovers who recognize that ‘perfection’ is boring.” 2017 cover stars have included Rowan Blanchard, Gabourey Sidibe, and Lena Dunham. Ok, you get the point, right?
But this month they took a step in a very different direction, by featuring Harry on the cover. So why is this such a big deal? Because high fashion, and society in general, treat aging like a death sentence. Older women are respected, but only to a point, When, after all, was the last time you saw Meryl Streep on the cover of a magazine? Or Helen Mirren? Both are awesome ladies who continue to stay mainstream and current, and yet they are rarely honored as the epitome of beauty.
Simply flip through any fashion magazine and you can find the latest in anti-aging products and procedures along with articles that claim you should start as soon as possible!
Fashion has slowly started to come around to the idea that age can be beautiful and earlier this year, Calvin Klein featured 73-year-old Lauren Hutton. But that’s just one small token in a minefield of “youth is beauty” rhetoric.
Oprah Winfrey said it best back in 2011:
“We live in a youth-obsessed culture that is constantly trying to tell us that if we are not young, and we’re not growing, and we’re not hot, that we don’t matter.”
So putting Debbie Harry, aka Blondie, on the cover of Nylon, one of the hippest, trendiest magazines out there right now, sends a big message: old is fucking cool.