Older women have become the new face of several fashion houses in recent months, a sign that global luxury retailers are increasingly switching their focus to elderly consumers.
In January, French brand Celine put renowned author 80-year old Joan Didion on their spring 2015 ad and a few days later, 71-year old singer-songwriter Joni Mitchell appeared in a Yves Saint Laurent feature. In February, Kate Spade's spring fashion shoot included 93-year old American style icon Iris Apfel and earlier this month, the world's oldest supermodel, 86-year-old Daphne Selfe, fronted the new campaign for H&M's high-end label "& Other Stories".
The ads celebrating wrinkled faces and grey hair are a concerted effort to target elderly consumers, marking a significant turnaround from traditional marketing to younger, millennial groups.
Brands are waking up to the fact that people over 65 – defined as elderly – make up the one of the fastest growing groups of global consumers. Last year, 5.3 million elderly individuals boasted an annual gross income of at least $150,000, Euromonitor said in a new report Tuesday. $150,000 is widely considered a high income bracket.
With the global elderly population expected to hit 2 billion by 2050, up from 841 million presently, according to World Health Organization estimates, the wealth of graying consumers is also expected to swell.