I don’t often agree with Blake Lively, but when she posted on Instagram a photo of her husband Ryan Reynold’s staring deeply into Helen Mirren’s eyes on the red carpet at the premiere of their movie Woman in Gold and wrote, “Should I be concerned that my husband’s never looked at me this way?” I agreed, yes, you should be concerned. Dame Helen Mirren is nothing if not a flawless beauty and fantastic wit, and the older she gets the more attractive she becomes—physically and mentally. And these days she’s not alone in the land of celebrities. More and more women over 50 are giving younger generations a run for their money, proving you can be sexy at any age. Here are just a few more celebs kicking it over 50.
Michelle Obama, 51
Being First Lady isn’t all tea parties and china-room tours. Sure, her style is as legendary as her bangs, but Obama also has degrees from Princeton and Harvard Law, and has used her role to advocate for healthy eating, LGBT rights, equal pay, and support for military family. And her Billy on the Street forever endeared her to my heart.
Meryl Streep, 66
I once saw Meryl Streep in a café in Chicago, and I swear she radiated beauty. Streep is a chameleon on screen, inhabiting her characters unlike any other actor out there. And she seems to have so much fun when out at public events—like she doesn’t give a damn because she’s freaking Meryl Streep.
Speaking of not giving a damn…Madonna proved she still had it when she fell at the Brit Awards this year—and kept going. (In contrast, I would have cried in pain and crawled off the stage) And like a true professional, Madge blamed the designers the cape and brushed the whole thing off like it was no biggy. Don’t cry for her United Kingdom.
Angela Bassett, 56
I swear Angela Bassett has a portrait of herself in an attic—she doesn’t age. Bassett is as fierce in real life as the characters she’s known to place on screen—in 2014, she made her directorial debut, helming a Whitney Houston biopic for Lifetime.
Susan Sarandon, 68
Her politics may be polarizing, but I think most of us can agree that Sarandon proves you only get sexier as you get older. Sarandan isn’t afraid to speak her mind about issues she feels passionately about; most recently she used her celebrity to draw awareness to the campaign to get women on American currency.
Julianne Moore, 54
Speaking of not afraid to speak her mind… Moore has taken a stand against the inane questions women are asked on the red carpet (taking aim at the “Mani Cam” in particular). She recently one her first Oscar for her performance in Still Alice, and it was long overdue given her consistently strong performances in pretty much everything she does.
Jane Fonda, 77
I remember putting on my stripped leg warmers and leotard and doing the Jane Fonda Workout as kid. It kicked my butt then, and something tells me that if Fonda were to lead me through it today, she’d kick my butt all over again. Fonda and 9 to 5 pal Lily Tomlin have a show debuting on Netflix, Grace and Frankie, about two rivals who come together when their husbands announce they are going to marry each other. And if Dolly shows up, check my pulse because I might be dead.
Sandra Bullock, 50
Hands down America’s sweetheart, Sandra Bullock makes 50 seem like the new 20. She’s vivacious, generous, beautiful, and seems like a good time, and the immense success she’s experienced in her career doesn’t seem to have turned her into a diva. I think most of us would welcome the opportunity to have Sandy as our BFF.
Jessica Lange, 65
Like most Hollywood actresses, Lange’s career was hot in her 30s and early 40s, when she starred in movies like Tootsie, Country, and Blue Sky. But she’s proven that you can have a career comeback in you 60s, serving as the muse to Ryan Murphy’s American Horror Story Anthology.
Betty White, 93
Don’t call her a comeback—Betty White has been a star for 70 years. And if a daily slice of cheesecake will have me on the arms of Chris Pine, starring in a hit TV show, and commanding seven-figure book advances in my 90s, well then make mine a double.