We talk a lot about badass bitches here at Fashion Unfiltered, but perhaps nobody gives fewer fucks than Helen Ruth Elam Van Winkle, better known by her 2.6 million Instagram followers as Baddie Winkle (the alter ego she adopted to cope with the death of her husband and son). As the sassy senior’s social media bio states, Winkle has been “stealing your man since 1928” and she looks damn good doing it, too—which is likely why rule-breaking beauty giant Urban Decay tapped the octogenarian rebel as its monthly muse. (She also recently nabbed a campaign for Missguided’s party wear collection that dropped last month.) Not afraid of a pleather crop top or a pink fur layered over a marijuana print maillot, she likes her lipstick just like her wardrobe: loud. From fiery fuchsia to vivid violet, her lips are always lit (much like her morning cigarette).
Whether she’s rocking a bedazzled nude bodysuit and matching cane on the red carpet at the VMAs better than Britney Spears, or making it rain likes on the gram in doorknocker earrings in tie-dye t-shirts, Winkle is never without edge. Asked what gives her a leg up on her much younger competition: “My age—I’m old, I’m 88,” she said. “But I also have a pretty good figure.” She keeps everything right and tight by dancing through her golden years to Drake. She said she also plans to “dance her way into heaven.” (Here’s hoping God has “Hotline Bling,” Winkle’s jam, blaring at the pearly gates when this angel comes a knocking.)
What makes Winkle such an incredible inspiration is not only her over-the-top sense of style, but also her devil-may-care attitude about life. “You’re only here once in your lifetime, so have fun,” she told Refinery29. And there’s no doubt she’s having plenty of it while breaking down barriers surrounding beauty and age. If Winkle has taught the world anything it’s that it’s never too late to reinvent yourself and dance like nobody’s watching (even if millions of people—including Miley Cyrus, Fergie, and Drake—are anxiously awaiting your next post).