Saturday, 21 April 2018

Isabella Rossellini. No longer "too old".

Isabella Rossellini became the face of Lancôme in 1982 - when she was 30. Her deal came to an end when she turned 42. She was "too old", executives told ther that women dreamed to be young and she could not represent women's dream. Advertisement did not represent reality but the dream, they added (via and via and via). Rossellini was replaced, "a younger woman with raven hair" was hired. When she turned 40,  Lancôme sent her a great many flowers which according to Rossellini was "a morgue". "I knew I was dead. They said, 'Be grateful, Isabella. You're lucky you lasted so long in the business." (via).

23 years later, in 2015, Lancôme contacted her - meanwhile in her sixties - again and asked her if she liked to come back (via). This time, the company said that women did not only want to look young and that they wanted to give a message of inclusion. Lancôme chose Rossellini, not another beautiful woman in her 60s, because they knew they had been wrong and wanted to publicly make it right (via).

"I just couldn’t believe it. I mean, it wasn't like three years later. Twenty-three years is a lifetime. I did say, 'You better see me', because I thought maybe they looked at the old photos and thought I haven't changed."
Isabella Rossellini

"I don't try to be younger, blonder or thinner. I am who I am. I think that women are told always to please, to be kind. And when you're younger you're really at the mercy and at the service of being accepted and being considered a good woman. But once you become older, I just want to do what I always wanted to do and I didn't do. So you find a lot of women in their 50s, 60s, 70s to say, I feel freer."
Isabella Rossellini

"Now they've developed several versions of this cream and the latest is called Rénergie Multi-Glow. We had a long discussion about that, because sometimes it's still described as antiage—and I said, 'Antiage!? That irritates me! ... Because we can't antiage. It's against nature!'" 
Isabella Rossellini 

“It’s wonderful to be back, to be a part of women’s emancipation, and I just happen to represent it through Lancôme.”
Isabella Rossellini

About waiting for the general manager of Lancôme International:
“I’m waiting at a café in Paris, and this motorcycle pulls up, then this tall rider takes off the helmet and her long blonde hair falls out! And I thought, oh my, how times have changed . . . Changes are good and for the better.”
Isabella Rossellini

About her mother:
“I know that she, like me and a lot of other actresses and models, started to work less as she aged, and that was painful to her because she loved it."
Isabella Rossellini

::: Wonderful interview (2018): LISTEN/WATCH

photographs via