Though a lifetime of sex, drugs and rock’n’roll should be enough to send anyone running to the surgeon, there are some lucky folk that have defied all aesthetic logic. Here are our pick of the permanently fresh-faced, starting with Johnny Marr, who, despite putting time in with The Smiths, Modest Mouse, The Cribs and his own solo project, still looks as bright-eyed as he did in the 80s.
Over the years, Pink Floyd bassist Roger Waters has repeatedly denied the band’s reported fondness for drugs, declaring that he has “no idea” why their conceptual, mind-bending tunes might possibly be associated with hallucinogens (us neither, mate…). Still, judging by the 70-year-old’s current looks, we’re starting to be more inclined to believe him.
Now, there may be a whole host of criticisms you can throw in Bono’s direction, but looking haggard sadly isn’t one of them. Maybe it’s the youth-giving elixir of the singer’s inbuilt Jesus complex; maybe it’s the fact that it’s been so long since he took off his sunglasses we actually have no idea what one third of his face looks like, but at 53, Bono’s not doing bad.
Ah, Bjork. Timeless, ageless, wonderful Bjork. The history books might state that you’re 48 but we know you’re actually an intergalactic pop nymph for whom time is but a cursory concept of which you pay no heed. Continue as you were.
In smash hit ‘Happy’, 41-year-old Pharrell managed to pen the most effervescent ode to positive thinking and keeping your glass half full in recent memory. Perhaps unsurprising, since if we looked like that at his age we’d be pretty bloody chirpy about it too.
On the surface it might seem like Damon Albarn’s work with Africa Express and voracious appetite for cross-cultural musical exploration are due to his innate sense of innovation. Not true – Damon just loves a holiday. After all, you don’t get youthful skin like that in your 40s from sitting on a sun bed all day.
The Boss may have been in the game for nearly 50 years (!!!) now, but Bruce Springsteen still has the twinkle in his eye of a man half his age. But you know what they say – exercise is key to a healthy lifestyle, and baby he was born to… sorry, we’ll show ourselves out.
Showing that a sporadic approach to touring and a hefty wardrobe fully of draped velvet can do wonders for the complexion, Fleetwood Mac’s iconic singer Stevie Nicks is still repping it in the style stakes at 65. The day Stevie dons a knitted cardigan is the day there’s no hope for any of us.
A considerable 90s coke habit, a never-ending sibling rivalry, a world-renown motor mouth and – oh yeah – being in one of the biggest British bands ever should have left Noel Gallagher looking as knackered as an overworked carthorse. Turns out, he’s got as blasé an approach to aging as he has to subtlety or holding his tongue. *Insert Live Forever joke here…*
To be fair, Slash’s hair/hat/shades combo is so integral to his look, you barely even notice the small portions of skin visible between the Guns n’ Roses man’s trademark accessory trio. Still, point still stands that if you took a photo of the 48-year-old from 1994 and 2014 you could barely tell the difference.
With the long-awaited return of Outkast and a starring role in the forthcoming Jimi Hendrix biopic rearing their heads, this summer is set to be Andre 3000’s for the taking. A daunting task for a 38-year-old, perhaps, but 3000’s got this particular numbers game firmly in hand.
Where bandmate Keith Richards’ lifetime of hedonism has left him looking like the dictionary definition of brilliantly wasted rock’n’roll, Mick Jagger has fared somewhat remarkably better. Still pouting and stomping the stage with youthful aplomb, Jagger may be 70, but he’s still got the moves like er… Jagger.
OK, so being bald for the last 25 years adds a certain timeless quality to a person, but R.E.M’s Michael Stipe has barely changed over the last few decades – follically or facially. Losing his religion; keeping his looks – life’s all about the balance, eh?
Flagrantly ignoring the laws of time and space, No Doubt singer turned Hollaback Girl Gwen Stefani actually seems to have got younger over time. Then she sported top-knots and bindis; now she’s fond of a platinum blonde do and lippy. Either way, we have literally no idea how the mum of three is in her mid-40s.
As one of the most recognizable pop stars on the planet, 67-year-old Elton John has something of a visual reputation to maintain. Turns out, however, that having millions of pounds, a hugely successful career and throwing a load of celebrity-studded parties doesn’t actually take that much of a stressful toll on a person. Who’d have thought?
Music’s premier yoga fiend and tantric sex advocate Sting has become almost as well-known for his zen-loving lifestyle as he has for his music. No surprise then, that the 62-year-old still looks at least forty times more healthy than any given member of Fat White Family. Better start practicing those downward dogs…
Veteran lothario Tom Jones may be spending the majority of his time these days spinning around with Kylie on The Voice, but back in the day the Welsh wonder was a veritable pop pin-up. Aside from a slightly worryingly luminous tan, the 73-year-old still looks like he could get the older ladies swooning.
If there’s ever been a photo of ex-Sonic Youth guitarist Kim Gordon not looking like the coolest person in the room, we’re yet to see it. Now aged 60 and still sporting the kind of artfully disheveled look that hairdressers would charge a small fortune to achieve, Kim is the ultimate effortless indie babe.
Eurythmics singer Annie Lennox may be in her fourth decade in the biz (the band’s debut came out in 1981), but the vocalist’s trademark cropped do and androgynous features have ensured that she’s still as fresh as ever. There must be an angel, indeed.
70-year-old Joni Mitchell may not spend much time in the spotlight these days, but her occasional sojourns onto the stage have shown the ‘Court and Spark’ star to have aged as gracefully as you’d expect. And with a new album in the pipeline, there’s clearly still life in the singer yet.
Chameleon of pop David Bowie may have gone through more image changes in his career than he’s had hot dinners (man’s got to keep his waistline after all), but the one thing that’s remained constant is his ageless aesthetic. Now aged 67, we reckon Bowie could still rock a metallic catsuit with panache.
Positing the theory that the secret to growing old in style is to have one feature that defines your entire face, Aerosmith frontman Steven Tyler’s mouth and, indeed, the rest of his features are still resisting the aging rockstar wrinkles at 66. Kudos.
It takes a lot of balls to have sported variations on the theme of ‘mullet’ for several decades. Perhaps that’s ex-Faces singer and old time solo star Rod Stewart’s key to the fountain of youth? It’s not young or old, good or bad, it just *is*.
My Bloody Valentine guitarist Bilinda Butcher must surely have completely ravaged her hearing after years of playing with the notoriously deafening shoegazers, but you’d never tell from the 52-year-old’s sprightly aesthetic. Kevin Shields must be raging.
Having released his first self-titled album 52 years ago, Bob Dylan’s place in the music sphere is so entrenched it’d be hard to imagine a world without him. Having essentially sported the same look his entire life, it’s easy to forget then that Bobby D is now 72. Continuity, it seems, is the answer.
OK, so he’s got a little more jowly in recent years, but for a man who’s spent the last half a century seeing and doing it all, Paul McCartney is looking mighty good for a 71-year-old. Further proof? His last two wives have both been at least two decades his junior. Double thumbs up to that one, eh Macca?
Proving that all you really need to stay young is a small warehouse worth of leather waistcoats, Jon Bon Jovi is still looking like a perma-grinning Wholefoods advert at 52. The singer even claims he’s never had Botox, which is either a complete lie or highly unfair on the rest of the world.
Still prone to the kind of unhinged facial expressions and mad eyes that hark back to his punk protagonist days, John Lydon is growing old in his own crazy way. Some might fall under the knife at the first sight of wrinkles, but Johnny’s sticking two fingers up to all that while still looking like his unpredictable self.
Then, we come to the king of inimitable aesthetics – The Cure’s Robert Smith. In the years since he decided to smear his first lipstick circa 1982’s ‘Pornography’, our Rob’s been a beacon of steadfast and brilliant commitment to the visual cause. Don’t ever change.
Praising Bikini Kill’s Kathleen Hanna for maintaining the youthful ideal of fresh-faced looks seems somewhat incongruous with the riot grrl pioneer’s ideals, so we’ll just leave it as this: Kathleen Hanna is and always will be cool.