In a groundbreaking achievement, American lifestyle icon Martha Stewart, aged 81, has become the oldest cover model for Sports Illustrated’s annual swimsuit edition. Known for her versatile career as a businesswoman, TV personality, and celebrity chef, Stewart posed confidently in ten different swimsuits during a captivating photoshoot in the picturesque Dominican Republic in January. This remarkable feat has ignited a social media frenzy.
Stewart’s announcement on her Instagram feed, featuring her on the magazine’s cover in an elegant white swimsuit with a plunging neckline, revealed that Sports Illustrated approached her for this historic opportunity in November of the previous year. In a heartfelt video shared on Sports Illustrated’s swimsuit edition website, Stewart disclosed her motivation, citing her desire to inspire people by proving that women of her age can radiate beauty, confidence, and vitality.
On Instagram, Stewart shared her life philosophy, emphasizing the importance of embracing change, evolution, and fearlessness as essential life goals. She encouraged her followers, regardless of their life stage, to draw inspiration from her cover and dare to explore new horizons.
Martha Stewart’s remarkable journey to fame commenced in the 1980s when she authored a series of bestselling cookbooks, leveraging her culinary expertise. In 1990, she launched «Martha Stewart Living» magazine, followed by a weekly television program dedicated to cooking, entertaining, and home decor.
Throughout her illustrious career, Stewart achieved the extraordinary distinction of becoming America’s first self-made female billionaire. However, in 2004, her professional trajectory encountered a significant setback when she faced a five-month prison sentence on charges related to insider trading. Undaunted by adversity, Stewart embarked on the path of rebuilding her brand and reputation. Earlier this year, she made a memorable appearance in a Super Bowl advertisement alongside her longtime friend, rapper Snoop Dogg.
MJ Day, the editor-in-chief of SI Swimsuit, praised Stewart’s unwavering spirit, highlighting her refusal to let circumstances dictate her destiny. Stewart’s inclusion as the cover model marks a notable departure from Sports Illustrated’s historical focus on young, white models, underscoring the magazine’s commitment to diversity and inclusion. This shift in perspective began with the inclusion of a transgender model in the 2020 swimsuit issue, followed by Tyra Banks becoming the first black woman to grace the cover in 1997.
Martha Stewart now joins the prestigious lineage of SI Swimsuit cover models, shattering age-related stereotypes and serving as an inspiration to individuals of all generations to embrace life’s adventures. The issue featuring Stewart’s historic cover is slated for release on Thursday, promising to make history and inspire future generations.