Madeleine Stowe's Anti-Aging Secrets

In the history of Hollywood, you’d be hard-pressed to find a character that’s so deliciously fascinating as that of the female villain. Conniving, capable and classically unapologetic, this all-around polarizing role is played by many, yet perfected by few. And, when a good one comes along—that character that has that sort of love-to-hate quality that goes against every societal norm while somehow still casting a spell—she captivates everyone in her tracks.

Prime time has had a handful of them, but no one has done it in recent years quite like Madeleine Stowe through her role as Victoria Grayson on ABC’s Revenge. Now in its third season, the show has taken a trove of twists and turns since its debut—dishing out the kind of over-the-top drama that is shamelessly addictive. 

The Age Advantage

At 55, Stowe is striking, and in person, the word beautiful does not do her justice; she can easily outshine even the most popular of starlets 30 years younger with her looks alone (a statement the humble actress would undoubtedly scoff at) and it’s almost mind-boggling that it’s been more than 20 years since she starred in The Last of the Mohicans and Short Cuts, with her role in 12 Monkeys not that many years behind. Ageism in Hollywood is no secret, but Stowe seems to be wading in new waters, taking center stage in a category that, until now, has sort of been uncharted territory—at least in terms of how society views it in relation to beauty.

Related: Get a sneak peek at Madeleine Stowe's cover shoot!

“Getting older and the whole concept of ‘aging gracefully’ was really interesting for me. You want to buck up against it,” she admits. “As soon as you hit 30, through that whole patch, it’s fabulous. Then you hit early 40s, and it’s great. Then it gets bumpy, and all of a sudden, you feel as though there’s not that much time left. You go through all this emotional upheaval and changes, and it feels almost grim in some ways—like you are just going through life and sort of mowing through it.”

“And then you hit 50. When I got to that age, all of a sudden, I finally felt this incredible sense of liberation. You sort of let go of everything,” she says, lighting up as she laughs. “I like to say I have 45 more years left. When you look at it that way, it’s wonderful. I put the burn on to do all the things I always dreamed of doing and I really became happy. It was a choice to say, ‘I’m going to be happy and there are wonderful things in this life.’ Yet, there is a terrible beauty to getting older at the same time. You just have to embrace all of those different feelings.”

“Aesthetically speaking, would I rather look the way I did in my 30s? Sure, of course I would,” she says. “But emotionally speaking, I don’t ever feel any particular sense of age. I feel happier than I did when I was younger. Is it a cliché? Maybe. But I am making a deliberate attempt to enjoy the moment and be really curious and live life. That gives me a sense of being alive. When I do that, people usually say ‘You look terrific today.'"

Beauty Secrets: “I do facial exercises. Those help a lot!”

Skin-Care Cure: “Sleep and water. I like to stick with things that have worked for years. They are the two best things out there for your skin.”

Wrinkle Eraser: “I get facials from aesthetician Nerida Joy. She’s extraordinary. She doesn't believe in going in for things like lasers and all of those other crazy treatments. She does a long facial massage and incorporates alphahydroxy acids and oxygen therapy and I think that helps my skin tremendously.” (You can learn more about Nerida Joy's secrets to glowing skin here.)

See the rest of Madeleine's interview (like what she really thinks about Victoria Grayson) in the NewBeauty Fall-Winter Issue


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  • hotgammy in honolulu

    madeleine stowe is gorgeous !!! Of course many celebrities get plastic surgeries and I think its great ! whatever it takes to preserve beauty, go for it, however in addition to proper diet and sleep, genetics can play an important factor as to why some people hold their age well and look much younger than others.

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  • laurie in chgo

    I read that article that says "my mom always told me not to scrunch my face, that's why I don't have lines, everyone thinks I got botox". What a liar, I see her on Revenge and nothing moves. Also, lips don't just get bigger with age!

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  • Cristina

    Definitely Gorgeous!!!!

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  • Anonymous

    she's gorgeous...

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  • MMelba

    "Sleep and water"--she forgot to add "lots of sunscreen". That's what most actresses like to say instead of giving the name of their plastic surgeon. Sure, she has good genes, but at 55--there's a bit of something else going on. Everyone in Hollywood does it--why lie?

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  • Suzie

    I think she looks great! It is possible that she is naturally beautiful. There is such a think as good genes - we all age differently.

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  • laurie in nyc

    What total BS...she has had a forehead lift, a facelift and her eyes done. Why do Hollywood people make others think that are are "naturally" beautiful! It raises false hopes and impossible standards so that older women cannot age gracefully. Shame on you, Ms. Stowe and the magazine that promotes this crap.

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