Martha Stewart, at the age of 81, has made history as the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue cover star.
The renowned television personality and culinary expert graced the magazine’s annual swimsuit edition, solidifying her position as the oldest cover model to date.
In this year’s edition, Sports Illustrated aimed to celebrate influential women who possess an unwavering sense of empowerment, transcending any limitations imposed upon them, be it internally or externally. Joining Stewart as cover models were the talented actor Megan Fox, stunning model Brooks Nader, and the talented musician Kim Petras.
Reflecting on her upcoming cover, Stewart expressed her initial thoughts, saying, “When I heard that I was going to be on the cover of Sports Illustrated Swimsuit, I thought: ‘Oh, well that’s pretty good.’ I’m gonna be the oldest person, I think, ever on the cover of Sports Illustrated.” Acknowledging the significance of the moment, she added, “And I don’t think about age very much, but I thought that this is kind of historic and that I better look really good.”
Stewart’s photo shoot, captured by the talented Ruven Afanador in the picturesque Dominican Republic, prompted questions about her dear friend and frequent collaborator, Snoop Dogg. With a chuckle, Stewart responded, “Snoop is going to just think that it is fantastic.”
With her Sports Illustrated cover, Stewart surpasses Maye Musk, model and mother of Elon Musk, as the oldest woman to grace the swimsuit issue. Maye Musk posed for the magazine in 2022 at the age of 74.
In an Instagram post, Stewart shared her motto, stating, “My motto has always been: ‘when you’re through changing, you’re through,’ so I thought, why not be up for this opportunity of a lifetime? I hope this cover inspires you to challenge yourself to try new things, no matter what stage of life you are in.”
Dubbed the “OG of influencers” by Sports Illustrated, Stewart rose to fame in the 1980s, captivating audiences with her cookbooks and television appearances following her success as a chef. Over the years, she has authored an impressive 99 books, hosted numerous cooking shows, launched her lifestyle magazine, and introduced her own lines of clothing, cooking, and home products.
Sports Illustrated Swimsuit’s editor-in-chief, MJ Day, commended Stewart’s relentless spirit, stating, “Never in her life has she let her circumstances dictate her outcome. She’s changed with the times – always one step ahead, it seems – to build a wide-reaching business empire.”
Kim Petras, another notable cover model, became the second transgender woman to grace the cover of Sports Illustrated Swimsuit, following in the footsteps of Leyna Bloom, who became the first transgender person of color to appear in the magazine in 2021.
Petras shared a powerful message in a video about her cover shoot, saying, “No matter what your gender or sexuality or any of that stuff is, it’s about what you make of life. It’s about what’s inside of you.”
Martha Stewart’s appearance on the cover of Sports Illustrated Swimsuit at 81 years old serves as an inspiration and a testament to the limitless possibilities that await those who embrace change and remain true to themselves, regardless of age, gender, or any other societal construct.