71-year-old fashion model crashes all beauty and age stereotypes: ‘If you don’t try, you’ll never know’

Rosa Saito may not be everyone’s idea of a fashion model. She is 71 years old and discovered her love for modeling a little later in life.

However, she proved that the world’s superficial and conventional beauty standards are not exactly what defines beauty. For Rosa Saito, age is just a number in the world of modeling.

Rosa’s Early Life

Rosa Saito was born in Aractula, Sao Paolo but when she was five years old, she moved to the capital of Brazil with her Japanese parents.

She recalled how much she loved arts even at a young age and she often showcased this in school. “I was the only one who filled the classroom walls with drawings, telling a story,” shared Rosa.

Like the rest of us, Rosa has her fair share of life struggles and difficulties. She was only 22 years old when she had to look after her bedridden mother while other people her age were busy studying or working.

In 2000, her husband passed away and left her with their three children. She had to raise them by herself since then.

Despite life’s challenges, she found solace in gardening. “It is important to seek and find yourself. And my moment of peace is with them (plants). I go to my garden and talk to them,” Rosa said.

Rosa’s Career as a Fashion Model

Though Rosa always knew she was meant to pursue something creative, she didn’t think she would become a mode especially at her age.

It all started when two modeling scouts unexpectedly asked her to join their agency. After that, a photographer also asked her to be their model.

“Twice it was by professionals from the Mega modeling agency and once by a photographer. I let the idea mature for a year, after all, it had cost too. It wasn’t something I was going to get into just like that, blindly,” Rosa recalled.

At 68, Rosa decided to give modeling a chance despite her insufficient knowledge of the industry. Her adventurous personality took her to the road she was always meant to take.

Finally, she found her greatest passion in life and continues to work on it. She even changed her real name, Setsuko Saito, to Rosa Saito for easier pronunciation.

Apparently, Rosa is a breath of fresh air in the fashion industry. Within just a year, she became an overnight sensation and garnered over 22,000 followers.

Nonetheless, Rosa was not after the spotlight. “I only seek to do the best in what I embrace with love and to find myself,” said Rosa. “I thought: be what God wants. If I don’t try, I’ll never know.”

Rosa’s Hope for the Beauty Industry

Rosa is naturally tall and slim and she always takes good care of her body. She grew up relying on natural remedies and never took one aspirin as a child.

“It was all based on tea, and in my essence, I am like that, kind of against everything that is chemistry. So I always took care of myself with aloe, coconut oil, and olive oil,” she said.

When asked if there is something she wants to change about herself, she said she does but she is not dissatisfied with herself.

“I don’t believe aging is the right word. I would say learning. I keep learning and I feel that the more I learn, the less I know. Surely, time passes, but what is time, my God in heaven? If I were to give my soul in age, I would give it a 22.

For her, the standards of the beauty industry are quite oppressive but she believes they will improve.

“I feel that slowly, we are changing. People are living longer, taking care of themselves more and companies really need to open up more in that sense and visualize these potential customers.”

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