Carmen Dell’Orefice, the oldest living supermodel at age 91, is still breaking barriers.
In the latest cover story for New You magazine, Dell’Orefice graces the pages with fellow fashion icon Beverly Johnson, 69, in which the duo discuss their decades-long careers and how they’ve never allowed age to dictate their perspectives on beauty.
“We keep growing every day, and we’re not finished until the day we’re finished,” Dell’Orefice says of getting older. “You learn something from the day before, and you’re constantly changing yourself like the hands of a clock. Time is passing, but you can’t see the hands move. That’s happening to humans daily, and it’s how you handle and accept the change.”
Dell’Orefice also posed nude for the shoot. Photographed by Fadil Berisha, the model looks radiant as she lounges in all white bedding.
Of shooting nude, she says, “It’s their perception of what they see in you or me. We are there, a synergy starts to happen, and they bring it out. It’s where their mindset is. The photographer’s mindset is high, not in the gutter. It’s all projection. We’re all silent actresses, and that’s what it’s about.”
Since the beginning of Dell’Orefice’s modeling career, the silver-haired beauty has set records. She became one of Vogue’s youngest cover models of all time at 15 years old. She also spoke of being photographed for the magazine by renowned fashion photographer Irving Penn.
“[Penn] told me to try to breathe as little as possible and don’t move. Just sit there,” she reflected on the historic shoot. “Irving was a really good friend to me, and he saved my life physically. He made me go to the Vogue
The supermodel’s legacy is so ingrained within the industry that even Johnson couldn’t help but gush.
“This woman is my idol. She is model goals,” Johnson, who was Vogue’s first-ever Black cover model in 1974, said of Dell’Orefice. “She’s been a mentor to me and doesn’t even know, and I have the utmost respect for this woman. I know all of her photographs. She has the biggest, most stunning body of work of any model in fashion.”
Even now, Dell’Orefice has yet to stop working, having appeared in campaigns for such companies like H&M, Sephora and Missoni. She’s even walked on runways for such designers as Thierry Mugler, Moschino and Isaac Mizrahi.
As for what keeps her going, the ageless beauty says it’s all about self-love.
“Men and women should care for themselves and love themselves,” she said. “One of the secrets to maintaining beauty is doing what you do for a baby, nurturing and feeding the baby with love.”
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