A 73-year-old woman is living her best life as a model, regularly posting about her life on TikTok to show the haters that you should feel comfortable to wear whatever you want, at any age.
While runways are usually awash with bright young things just starting out in their career, Colleen Heidemann is out there proving you’re never too old to follow your dreams, having turned to modelling at the age of 69.
Now signed with NEXT Models, she often shares glimpses behind the scenes of her busy life on TikTok, where she has more than 300,000 followers.
As well as encouraging others to be as active as they can – saying as we get older we simply cannot ‘afford to stop moving – Heidemann also loves to spread body positivity to the masses.
She often posts her glamorous looks online as a way of showing people you should be able to dress however you feel.
In one, Heidemann mocks people who say she shouldn’t wear ‘such high heels’ in her 70s, and that she should dress her ‘age’.
“How about #wearwhatyouwant,” she hits back, with an accompanying video showing her strutting through the streets in knee-high black boots and fierce sunglasses.
Quoting the haters in another clip, she writes: “‘This swimwear is not age appropriate,’ is what they say.
“I say: Wear what makes you feel good!”
In the video’s caption, Heidemann adds: “Temperatures are climbing up and I just want to tell you, wear what makes you feel beautiful. EVERY BODY IS A SWIMSUIT BODY.”
In another, she poses in beautiful lingerie, asking: “Who says you have to stop feeling pretty in lingerie when you’re in your 70s?”
In an interview with DScene, the former flight attendant said she considers what she ‘puts into her body’ much more than she used to, as well as how physically active she should be.
“I do not smoke nor drink but never have,” she said.
“My emphasis is always on vegetables, raw or grilled, preferably. I eat very little meat, chicken primarily, beef but a few times during the year.”
Heidemann said she also tries ‘very hard’ to consume less sugar, but that hot coffee remained her passion, adding: “I sincerely believe that physical and mental stimulation are not maybe but must toward obtaining a better life ahead, one, hopefully, which might allow for so much more personal freedom, dignity, pride and self reliance!”
As for how she deals with ageism, the model and actor continued: “I encounter and rail against it on a daily basis, primarily because I vehemently believe in the ever so necessary, utterly special, and wondrously unique presence that is ‘WOMAN’!
“A difficult truth is that women age so differently than do men, that with menopause comes the ‘Age of Irrelevance’!
“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!”