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The Independent UK
The Independent UK
Meredith Clark

Maye Musk, 74, makes history as oldest Sports Illustrated Swimsuit cover star

Getty Images

Elon Musk’s mother Maye has made history as the oldest model to pose for the cover of Sports Illustrated’s Swimsuit issue.

The 74-year-old model appeared in the annual swimsuit issue on Monday while wearing a one-piece Maygel Coronel suit on the beach in Belize. Musk joins fellow cover models Kim Kardashian, singer Ciara, and rising star Yumi Nu as faces of the 2022 issue.

“To be a swimsuit model for Sports Illustrated, people would’ve locked me away as a crazy lady,” she said while on location in Belize with the magazine. “I’m very excited that they’ve decided that even older women can wear swimsuits and look great. I think it’s really going to change how women feel when they walk out in their swimsuits.”

While the Canadian-South African model may be the oldest person to pose for the SI Swimsuit cover, Musk began her modeling career more than five decades ago. In 2013, Musk appeared in the Beyoncé music video for Haunted, and in 2017 became CoverGirl’s oldest spokesmodel at age 69. Today, she hopes to shatter expectations of age and beauty in the modeling industry.

“I didn’t think age would be a problem because as a dietician and a scientist, age is not a problem,” Musk said. “I’m just so happy that people are actually booking me for talks on ageism and how to feel good about yourself at any age.”

She added: “I’m also very proud that I can give a message to women in the world to aim for happiness, do things you like to do, mix with nice people, be kind to everyone because you never know and pursue whatever you’d wish to do. I really am living the best life ever, and I never expected it.”

The author is also a mother to her three successful children – billionaire Elon Musk, 50, restaurateur Kimbal Musk, 49, and film producer Tosca Musk, 47. In her memoir, A Woman Makes a Plan: Advice for a Lifetime of Adventure, Beauty and Success, Musk detailed working five jobs at once to support her three children as a single mom.

Her daughter Tosca reflected on her mother’s accomplishments as a scientist, dietician, and model. “She is an uncontainable force, and she’s the most fearless woman I’ve ever known,” Tosca wrote in an essay for the issue.

Maye Musk took to Instagram on Monday to celebrate the historic cover. The model captioned her social media post: “I am so excited to be on the cover of @si_swimsuit at the age of 74. It’s about time!”

As Sports Illustrated announced the news of its latest cover stars on their offical Instagram page, fans praised the model for challenging ageism in the modeling industry.

“I believe it. She’s inspiring me in my career at age 67,” commented one Instagram user. “Thanks @mayemusk”.

“I love this,” shared someone else. “Women can be beautiful and sexy at any age. It’s nice to see a women over 30 on the cover, because that’s pretty rare”.

One user joked, “74???? Hot damn,” while another person commented, “My favorite cover yet!”

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