Vera Wang, 72, calls ageism 'old-fashioned' following fitness bra photo

Vera Wang has opened up about the subject of ageism, pictured in September 2021. (Getty Images)
Vera Wang has opened up about the subject of ageism, pictured in September 2021. (Getty Images)

Vera Wang has opened up about ageism, explaining that she believes the concept is “so old-fashioned”.

As part of the BBC's International Women's Day coverage, the fashion designer, 72, revealed in an interview she never thought of “going way out of my way” to preserve her youth “in a fanatical, obsessive way”.

Her comments came after an image of her wearing a fitness bra in lockdown caused something of a stir on social media with some describing it as being “age-defying”.

The image was just one of a whole range of posts she shared on Instagram during lockdown, leaving fans amazed she is a septuagenarian.

Wang said she was “shocked” at the attention the photograph garnered: “I didn’t think of myself as being particularly risqué," she told the BBC.

"I mean, it's nice that people thought that about me. It's very complimentary and I'm very grateful for that," she continued.

The designer went on to say that since the photograph went viral, she has been asked for the “secrets” of her youthfulness.

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“I’ve got to be really honest, one of them is sleep,” Wang said, before revealing another more surprising secret.

"I value having a vodka cocktail at the end of the day. Because it helps me to transition from a very intense work schedule to a bit of a private life."

As well as pouring herself a post-work cocktail and making sure she gets plenty of rest, the absolute "magic elixir" for the designer is her "work".

Wang went on to say that she “never thought about youth” during her years working in fashion, “probably because I work with the most beautiful women in the world on a daily basis."

“Because of that, I more envision them as my muses,” she explained, before adding that it was “maybe a way of dealing with ageing that is productive”.

Returning to the subject of ageism, Wang said she finds it “so old-fashioned” because in life “you have to try and continue to grow in one way or another”.

Watch: Three delicious anti-ageing foods for beautiful skin

Later in the video clip Wang revealed that fashion was not her first choice of career when she was younger, having trained as a figure skater from the age of eight, but failing to qualify to compete in the US Olympics team.

Although she felt “lost” when her figure skating career was unsuccessful, Wang said she found everything she loved about skating in the fashion world.

“Shows and music and editing and design and creativity and storytelling,” she said. “All the things that I loved about skating, I took with me into fashion.”

Although genetics likely play a part in Wang’s youthful appearance, she has also previously divulged some of her secrets.

Wang has revealed some of the secrets to her youthful looks, pictured in August 2018. (Getty Images)
Wang has revealed some of the secrets to her youthful looks, pictured in August 2018. (Getty Images)

After one Twitter user said they’ll “have whatever Vera Wang is drinking” the designer decided to reply letting them into her secret.

“Diet Coca Cola... typical on a NY fashion type," she admitted.

Giving us more of an insight, she also told fans she has “work, sleep, a vodka cocktail, not much sun” to thank for her appearance.

Wang has perviously admitted she sometimes feels the pressure to exercise too. In an interview with Harper’s Bazaar US the fashion designer admitted that her “extremely fit” colleagues have pushed her to “work out most days”.

Wang also told the magazine that she tries to lift weights everyday, but she keeps it relatively light.

“Not much—two pounds and three pounds. It takes me a total of five minutes,” she explained.

When it comes to food, Wang seems to keep things balanced for maximum impact. In the same interview with Harper’s Baazar, she said: “I go through phases with what I eat for lunch: I like sashimi with brown rice and vegetables, Chinese steamed broccoli with chicken and rice, or the artichoke salad or fish from Sant Ambroeus.”

Her one piece of golden advice, though? “Never miss a meal; I have to feed my brain."

Watch: Dame Emma Thompson: Hollywood has 'utterly unbalanced' double standards