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Social media “Grand Influencers” over 70 uncover the myth of aging | Lifestyle


New York — Joan MacDonald’s health was in turmoil at the age of 71. She was overweight and was taking a number of medications with high cholesterol, elevated blood pressure, and kidney damage.

Her daughter, a fitness coach, warned that if she didn’t turn things around, she would be invalid. She went to the gym for the first time and learned to balance her diet with the help of a new tool, the iPhone.

Now 75, McDonald’s is a hype beast for health with a bodybuilder physique and Instagram’s 1.4 million loyal followers.

She has an increasing number of “grand influencers” over the age of 70 who have attracted considerable followers on social media with the help of young fans for decades.

“It’s very rare to find someone of her age able to do all this,” said one of her worshipers, 18-year-old Marianne Zapata in Larchmont, NY. “Even thinking is very positive.”

Ambitious, inspiring, old influencers are turning digital platforms into gold.

McDonald’s has partnerships with sportswear and supplement brand Women’s Best and stress relief device Sensate. And after learning how to use digital technology herself, she launched her own health and fitness app less than many years ago.

At TikTok, four friends (youngest 65 years old) who use @oldgays have 2.2 million followers, including Liana. They have an approval deal with Grindr because they delight fans with their ignorant answers to pop culture questions.

Others focus on beauty and style, set up Amazon closets with their dependable looks, and do make-up tutorials live. Lagetta Wayne, 78, as @msgrandmasgarden on TikTok, asks teens to become grandmothers to care for and cook vegetables in Swiss City, California.

Wayne has attracted 130,500 followers since joining in June 2020, and his success on social media is due to his teenage granddaughter. Her first video, the Garden Tour, recorded 37,600 likes.

“One day my garden was so clean, I was all excited about it, and I asked her if she would take a picture of me,” Wayne recalled. “She said she was going to put me on TikTok, what is I TikTok? I had never heard of it.”

According to AARP’s 2019 survey, most people over the age of 50 use technology to stay connected with friends and family. However, because they rely more on Facebook than other platforms, less than half use social media every day for that purpose.

According to a survey, only 37% of people over the age of 70 used social media daily in 2019. Alison Bryant, senior vice president of AARP, said that since the outbreak of the coronavirus, older creators have expanded their horizons beyond their flagship Facebook and become more greedy.

In California’s desert city, Cathedral City, Jesse Martin is 68 years old and the second youngest gay man.

“I thought I was going to spend the rest of my life quite relaxed, and I do, but this is more recovering for us. I work at a senior center food bank on Monday. I did yoga for an hour and a half on Tuesdays and Fridays and was at the front desk of the senior center on Wednesdays. I was just floating, not sociable and not in the gay community. Old gay it Changed. “

Like McDonald’s, they shatter many myths about what is possible during the 60, 70, and 80 years of life.

“They show that anyone can do these things and you don’t have to be afraid of aging. Something in 20 and 30 often doesn’t think about it,” Bryant said. “The credibility found in some of these old influencers is really fresh. It’s part of the complexity of their story. They bring other parts of their lives to it. They are grandparents. Yes, great-grandparents and spouses. They are more comfortable on their skin. “

Blogger and artist Sandra Sarin is gradually increasing her 25,300 followers on Instagram. Her reach recently extended to Tom Daley, the gold medal diver of the British Olympics. Tom Daley praised his mother’s cheesecake recipe after the coach found it online and made it for athletes and staff. A lipstick enthusiast with a focus on cooking and beauty, Sarin also shares photos of her past and other adventures, like last year’s turn at a vintage Spitfire on the cliffs of Dover. ..

“I wanted to expand my world. I felt I was old and my world was shrinking. People were moving and people were sick,” says Sarin. rice field. “So I started blogging because I wanted to get in touch. Then I heard about Instagram. It was really hard to learn. I really stumbled. Most of the people who follow me. I was shocked because I was 30 years old, and I am 40 years younger, but some older people give up and say, “I’m starting to put on lipstick.”

Toby Bloomberg, 69, in Atlanta is a supporter of Sarin. She discovered Sarin after she participated in the short-lived Food Network show “Grandma’s Clash.”

“She talks a lot about aging, which is a very rare phenomenon on social media and is clearly dominated by people who are much younger than us,” Bloomberg said.

McDonald’s said he was initially surprised that people were really concerned about what she had to say.

“Why do people want to chase old Broad,” she laughed from her home in Ontario, Canada. “My daughter Michelle made it clear. She said that you could do what people thought they couldn’t do or were told they couldn’t. “

32-year-old Grace Maier stays home full-time with two children, 6 months and 2 years old. She follows Barbara Costello, a 72-year-old Connecticut grandmother who uses the handle @brunchwithbabs.

“She makes these posts,’Have your mom told you?’ And I immediately followed her on Instagram,” he said. “Her content brings me joy! She has all these life hacks and tips that remind me of what my grandmother shared with me before her death. She also takes herself too seriously. It’s like someone who doesn’t take it and just welcomes you. Take you to her house. “

Mae Karwowski, founder and CEO of influencer marketing agencies, clearly has more than 100 influencers in its network between the ages of 60 and 80. With over a billion users on Instagram alone, she points to success on the 93- platform. 1 year old Helen Ruth Elam (baddiewinkle), 67 year old Lyn Slater (accidentally), 100 year old style legend Iris Apfel.

There is another side to the reach of older people. From traveling the world to Nerf shootouts, grandparents and grandchildren teamed up to share their adventures together.

“I think the mainstream media offers a very narrow perspective on this age group. The great thing about social media is that you can follow a really cool 75 year old woman who is just doing herself in Florida. It’s fun. It’s not .. And she’s funny. ” “The influencer of a 21-year-old fashion model is managed. She has a team. She has a designer upside down to give everything. She has a professional photographer. These Many of the 70+ influencers do it all. “

Candace Cima, 74, watched a YouTube tutorial and learned how to shoot and edit Instagram videos. In February 2019, she jumped onto the platform as a fresh voice about fashion and style, urging viewers not to be afraid of aging. Her husband sometimes helps with photos of @ styleinyour70s.withleslieb (Leslie is her middle name).

“I’m still on that learning curve. I have to be honest. Two and a half years ago, I didn’t even know what an influencer was,” said Cima in Ithaca, New York. “I have always had a lot of thoughts about aging. I don’t understand why aging has such negative implications.”

Some of her youngest fans have 37,900 followers and share with her why they care. “They feel like they can learn something.”

Social media “Grand Influencers” over 70 uncover the myth of aging | Lifestyle

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