‘You can do this at any age’ – 50-something Sheffield catwalk star proud to be flying flag for older models
Sheffield 50-something Julia Goodinson lives in Norton, has one grown-up daughter and two beautiful granddaughters.
She is also an award-winning catwalk model.
Last month, Julia came runner-up in only the second ever over-45s ‘classic’ competition at the Miss British Isles catwalk modelling finals in Chester.
After doing so well representing South Yorkshire in the national contest, Julia now hopes her achievement can inspire other older models - and people in general - to think that getting older doesn't have to be all bad.
She said: “It is really nice because it is good to know the industry is not biased against mature models so people know that when you are getting older it doesn’t mean you can’t still look nice.
“It was really exciting and fun and I was more than thrilled to get second place. In some ways it is more of an honour now to be runner up than it would have been to win when I was younger.”
Julia says she has done photographic work all her life, but when she was in her 20s never saw someone in their 40s and 50s modelling.
But things have changed dramatically over the last 10 years with several trailblazers proving there is a place in the industry for the more mature model.
“In the past it was not the done thing,” she says.
“But people like Twiggy and Lulu have really been role models.”
She is at pains to stress that the competition wasn’t a beauty pageant but a test of the skill of catwalk modelling.
“At a beauty pageant the expectation is that you are beautiful and like at Miss World where you talk about your hobbies,” she says.
“Beauty pageants used to be massive and are a bit out of date now but there will always be a modelling industry.
“A modelling competition is not about being beautiful it is about being able to walk down the catwalk and own it and say in your body and in your mind this is the dress the people watching want. It is a skill.”
Her bread and butter is fashion modelling but she also does promotional work in the perfume and cosmetics industries.
And in the last few years Julia has also started acting, playing roles in 19 short films so far as well as music videos and adverts .
Of the acting, she says it is hard work and not always glamorous but it really ‘brings her out of herself’.
And there are more roles for older women in screen roles as well, she says.
Julia bemoans the fact it is often easier for men to grow old gracefully, becoming ‘distinguished’ as opposed to their looks ‘deteriorating’ as women’s supposedly do.
“You have to accept that you are getting older,” she says.
“But it is nice to know that things are changing and women are allowed to grow old more gracefully and still look nice as well.”
“Once someone gets to 50 people used to think that was it but you can do this at any age. 20 years ago maybe not but now you can.”