7 Inspiring Women Share Their Self-Love Letters

Dear Mia,

“It is 2016, and you are 50 glorious years old now and have been dyeing your hair dark to hide your grey strands from the judgmental eyes of the world for almost two decades. You love the colour of your natural silver hair that glistens at the root five days after dye day, but you fear how society may deem you irrelevant. The beautiful colour that grows naturally from your scalp is deemed unacceptable, ugly even. It is associated with being old, and old is considered undesirable. You wonder how you will survive the workplace because you know that when you were young, you would have judged that grey-haired old colleague as outdated. How will you navigate being single? What man would ever find grey hair attractive?!

“However, be brave. Know that the letting go of the dye will lead to the letting go of your inner ageism. Society has taught you that you should try to look young for as long as you can—that you will only be attractive if you do everything you can to stay looking youthful, dye your hair, buy ‘anti-ageing’ cream, obsess about every new wrinkle, age spot or open pore, hate on every single sign of your years on this Earth, dread each birthday and fear being asked your age. But find the strength to stop listening. Once you do, amazing things will happen for you.

“You will stand out. Strangers will notice you, stop you in the street to pay you kind compliments. Many will say that you are brave to be so radical, and you will discover that you were wrong about feeling undesirable. Men and women admire the colour but, more importantly, what it stands for: a woman who said, ‘No more will I listen to society. I have accepted my age, and I am now free of my own ageist, limiting beliefs. This is me!’ It will be one of the best decisions you ever made, and it will transform your life.

“By 2020, in the middle of a pandemic, you will decide to tackle societal ageism. As a midlife consumer, you have been feeling ignored by brands and made to feel invisible and irrelevant, spending your hard-earned money with brands who didn’t see you. You have felt marginalised before as a young woman when you didn’t see yourself in magazines or on billboards, whether that be your skin tone, your hair texture, your body type, and it led to poor body image and low self-esteem. But once all of those ‘diversity’ boxes have been ticked, what about age inclusivity? Well, with the power of social media, your voice can now be heard.

“At 54 years old, you will make the decision to be visible and vocal about ageism because you don’t want your daughters to buy into the notion that life ends at 40. You will connect with other women on Instagram and build a community of women who refuse to be ignored, creating a space that represents your generation authentically. You will switch your IG account from private to public and put out the call to action ‘Let’s create an authentic silver space for the next generation.’ They use the hashtag #SilverSisters, and this community of amazingly supportive and feisty women will inspire you to keep creating content until the unthinkable will happen. Within four weeks of being public with your page, four model agencies will scout you.

“As a model, you will work with the largest global beauty brand on a global campaign. You will film for a Disney CGI remake. You will dance in your knickers for an M&S lingerie campaign. UK TV will use your image to discuss age inclusion in marketing. Your image will be in every mainstream newspaper, the cover of Stylist magazine. You will be on billboards and magazines across Europe, Canada, the Caribbean, Central and South America. All the while, you’ll be continuing to fight ageist attitudes and changing the narrative around midlife on Instagram. Now, you’ve even been scouted by a literary agency and are in the process of writing a book proposal about ageing gracefully.

“So you see—it wasn’t so bad. Deciding to ditch the dye will, in fact, lead to you living a life filled with purpose.”

Warmest of wishes,


Mia Maugé, Model 

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