The New Beauty Beyond 40

Getting older has never looked better, and women who see themselves as more mature than the 20-somethings on billboards have never had stronger, more powerful and gorgeous role models.

Gwen Stefani beauty over 40

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While many brands may box women into categories, forgetting to include anyone in the 40+ range, forward-thinking companies are recognizing it’s these very women we need to look up to: They’re independent, look after themselves, and they value female empowerment.

Why 40+ is not an acceptable age limit - What happened to everyone older?

Far from dropping off the earth, women aged 40+ are finding their feet and making an impact in a way women in this age bracket have never had the chance to do before.

Not only do these women aim to inspire younger women to stand up for their rights and call for change, they’re also inspiring others thanks to their dedication to pursuing fulfillment in every aspect of their lives.

"They're actually living far bigger and richer lives than younger people, who are probably just scrambling to get a career off the ground, trying to raise a family and figure out who they are,” said WPP AUNZ’s chief strategy officer Rose Herceg.

Living rich, fulfilled lives with a strong sense of self is the key to ‘living well’ today, and it seems the over 40’s have it nailed.

The women over 40 showing others the way forward

1. Gwen Stefani - 50

Not only has she created some amazing hits (Hollaback Girl, Spider's Web) she's also innovative, stylish and humble. Long time fan Katy Perry told Rolling Stone Stefani is "gracious and wonderful."

2. Halle Berry - 53

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Berry was the first African-American woman to win an Academy Award for best actress and now she's directing and starring in her own films. Amazing.

3. Gabrielle Union - 47

Standing up for her family on social media is just one reason this incredibly strong, fit female is one of our favourites.

4. Kim Cattrall - 61

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Inspired by strong women in her personal life including her grandmother, Cattrall says she's motivated to tell stories about real women. 

"I’d like to be remembered as somebody who was entertaining and honest. I pretend for a living so it’s nice in the real world to be truthful," said Cattrall. Preach!

5. Helen Mirren - 70

She's won four Emmys, one Oscar and one Tony, and is passionate about female empowerment. In 2015 Mirren said:

"I love the fact that girls are so much more confident and outspoken than my generation were. We were sort of brought up to be polite and sometimes politeness, in certain circumstances, is not what’s required, you’ve got to have the courage to stand up for yourself occasionally when it’s needed."

6. Jane Fonda - 81

Fonda holds “Fire Drill Fridays” with advocacy groups Greenpeace and Code Pink  to protest the United States’ lack of action on reducing climate-altering greenhouse gases. She spent a night in jail last week. What an inspiration.

What is beauty over 40?

Thankfully, women over 40 are beginning to be represented in the beauty industry, although it’s only just the beginning. With the power of social media, everyday people have unprecedented insight into the lives of everyone, including powerful women over 40, and they like what they see.

Not only do millennials want to look like these stunning women when they get older, they want to have the sense of self, the confidence, and the convictions of these women too.

Jane Fonda arrested climate change protest

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Instead of hiding the age-related changes faced by this age group, strong role models are addressing them head on.

Kim Cattrall discussed menopause, a previously taboo subject:

"I was used to being able to balance a lot of things, and all of a sudden I felt like I could handle nothing. I felt completely overwhelmed.

[But] you're not alone. I feel that part of living this long is experiencing this, so I’m trying to turn it into a very positive thing for myself, which it has been, in the sense of acceptance and tolerance and education about this time of life."

If you’re a millennial looking for role models with life experience you can learn from, or you’re a woman over 40 who is sick of being underrepresented in the media, we want to hear from you

Tell us how your age affects your beauty ideals, and what you want to see change!