High Heels
Julie Hambleton
Julie Hambleton
March 31, 2024 ·  5 min read

Defying Ageism: 74-year-old model shows us age is just a number

In a society often obsessed with youth and beauty, an inspiring woman named Colleen Heidemann is redefining age and breaking stereotypes in the fashion industry, and defying ageism. At the age of 74, she became a renowned model and influencer, challenging the notion that fashion is limited to a certain age group.

Redefining Age: The Inspirational Journey of Colleen Heidemann, the 74-Year-Old Model and Influencer

At 74 years old, one can certainly not describe Colleen Heidemann as “conventional.” This is something that the actress, model, and internet personality is clearly quite proud of. Having grown up in a society that has traditionally brushed women aside as “yesterday’s news” even when they are as young as in their 30s, she has decided to buck tradition and live her most fabulous life no matter what. (1)

View this post on Instagram

A post shared by Colleen Heidemann (@colleen_heidemann)

Colleen has always been one who has enjoyed fashion. She enjoys playing with makeup and clothing, both as a means of expressing herself and as one to feel beautiful and confident. Colleen realized that age should not be a barrier to expressing oneself through fashion. Inspired by this perspective, she embarked on a journey to challenge societal norms and redefine what it means to “dress for your age.

“A difficult truth is that women age so differently than do men, that with menopause comes the “Age of Irrelevance”!” she said in an interview. “Well, I prefer it to be felt and seen as an “Age of Enlightenment”, whereupon we realize just how much that is wonderful we yet have to learn, to feel, to think, to experience, and oh, yes, to laugh about. So let us not despair but continue to keep going, keep doing, keep moving, KEEP BEING ALIVE!” (2)

Read: 57-Year-Old Model, Paulina Porizkova Responded to Critics Who Called Her Desperate Grandma After Posting Bikini Photos

Defying Ageism: A Model At 69

Most models start their careers at a young age and then “age out” of the industry. The most successful ones have gone on to build fashion empires, sell-out makeup lines, or other businesses in industries that they are passionate about. Colleen, however, didn’t even begin her modelling career until age 69 – long after the typical model’s career has ended. While just a quick look at the star’s Instagram page will make it obvious, Colleen credits the kindness of others.

View this post on Instagram

A post shared by Colleen Heidemann (@colleen_heidemann)

“It is sincerely and utterly incredulous to me, due only to the wonderful kindness and extraordinary generosity of others…..namely Ari Seth Cohen of “Advanced Style” who took a picture and placed it in a book he was soon to publish, Antonia Hemgesberg, a student of music in Vienna who saw my photo and wrote a most precious letter, Anna Costanza of AC Talent and Alexis Borges of NEXT MANAGEMENT, LA whom each I met and determined a conclusion I know not what! So extremely grateful to one and all, I forever shall be.” she said of how her career in fashion began.

The World Is Taking Notice

The fashion industry has taken notice of Colleen’s undeniable allure and has embraced her with open arms. She has been featured in numerous fashion magazines, including the cover of Vogue Portugal. She has walked on runways, and collaborated with renowned designers. She has also appeared in some recent movies and music videos. Colleen’s presence in the industry has not only showcased her timeless beauty but has also given a voice to older generations, challenging ageist mindsets and sparking conversations about inclusivity. When asked about her personal style, Colleen says that she redefines herself daily.

“I do not possess one definitive style as I tend to wear at this stage of my life clothing I never would have chosen when younger. I therefore do not stereotype any image of myself but prefer a more diverse selection process… I know it when I see it and usually realize immediately how best my body might wear it.”

View this post on Instagram

A post shared by Colleen Heidemann (@colleen_heidemann)

Every Body Is A Swimsuit Body”

Colleen’s influential presence extends beyond fashion; she uses her platform to inspire and uplift others. Through her social media channels, she advocates for body positivity, self-acceptance, and embracing one’s unique beauty at any age. Colleen encourages her followers to let go of societal expectations and be true to themselves, reminding them that style has no expiration date.

As a role model and influencer, Colleen Heidemann has shattered the stereotypes surrounding age and fashion. She has become an empowering figure, giving older individuals the confidence to express themselves fearlessly without conforming to societal expectations. She has also helped younger generations learn to not fear aging, but rather, to embrace it. Through her inspiring journey, Colleen proves that one can pursue their passions at any age and redefine what it means to “dress for your age.

While most of the comments on her Instagram posts are a flood of praise and admiration, she still comes across those who criticize. People telling her that the clothes are beautiful but she should really dress her age, or that women “of her age” shouldn’t be wearing swimsuits/jeans/dresses/skirts/shoes/makeup like that. Her response? Ignore the haters, embrace the love, and continue to do what makes her happy and feel good in her own skin.

View this post on Instagram

A post shared by Colleen Heidemann (@colleen_heidemann)

Beauty is Ageless

In a world where ageism exists, Colleen Heidemann’s story is a source of inspiration for people of all generations. She teaches us that age should never limit our dreams and that true beauty transcends the boundaries of time. With every photo she shares and every step she takes down the runway, Colleen continues to redefine age and leave an indelible mark on the fashion industry.

Keep Reading: Sharon Stone Proves That We Can Still Rock a Bikini at 65, and Some People Spot a Curious Detail


  1. A 74-year-old model defies ageism – has a fitting response to critics.” Newsner. Himani Ediriweera. July 7, 2023.
  2. DSCENE Interview with Model & Actress COLLEEN HEIDEMANN.” Design Scene,. January 3, 2022