Iconic women of the 70s: Where are they now?
The 70s were a time of peace, love, and some seriously sexy women. Whether they were dazzling movie goers on the silver screen or taking a stance in Washington DC, these stunners were turning heads everywhere they went. Forty years later, we catch up with these ladies and see how they are holding up. Hop in our hippie van as we take a groovy trip back to the disco era and revisit the first crushes of an entire generation.
Lynda Carter: Superhero of the ’70s
The raven-haired beauty first came into the spotlight when she was crowned Miss America in 1972, but her reign over America wouldn’t end there. She mesmerized audiences, and a few years later she made her acting debut in a role that would earn her a place in history. She was the ultimate ‘70s icon as DC Comic’s Wonder Woman.
Few could have owned the role as a voluptuous, strong, and independent superhero woman the way Lynda Carter did. No man — not even Superman himself — was worthy of her. The way she spun that lasso over her head had every man across the country wishing they were a steer.
Today: Still kickin’ butt
Forty years later, Carter is still landing roles and looking fabulous. She’s continued to work on superhero shows, and currently plays the President of the United States on CW’s Supergirl. She has retained her looks, and we’d be willing to be bet that she can still rock that Wonder Woman get-up effortlessly and kick some serious butt.
Gracious and classy, when the remake of Wonder Woman was released in 2017, Carter complimented Gal Gardot for carrying on the iconic role she brought to life in a tweet. “What a wonderful movie!! Gal Gadot is fabulous as Wonder Woman and the movie premiere was amazing!,” Carter said. Girl power!
Hello, Charlie: Farrah Fawcett
Blonde bombshell Farrah Fawcett wanted to make it big in acting, but mostly landed small roles in commercials, and as an occasional guest appearance on TV shows in the early 70s. All that changed when a poster company called Pro Arts Inc. suggested to her agent that she take a few promotional shots and print them as posters.
She did, and the resulting photo went on to become the best-selling poster of all time. Soon after the shoot, she landed a role as private investigator Jill Munroe on the popular TV series Charlie’s Angels. She was nominated for several Emmys and Golden Globe Awards.
Life after Charlie
Farrah went on to pursue more serious roles in movies and in plays with mixed degrees of success. She had a son, Redmond James Fawcett-O’Neal with actor Ryan O’Neal. She also went through several personal hardships during the 90s and early 2000s.
Sadly, in 2006, Farrah was diagnosed with cancer. She underwent chemotherapy and Ryan O’Neal helped her through it. Though she managed to get cancer free for awhile in 2007, the cancer returned. She passed away on June 25, 2009. Her infamous red swimsuit and golden tousled hair secured her place as a 70s icon, and can still be found in the man-caves of suburbia across the country.
The First Lady of Rock, Stevie Nicks
The frontwoman of Fleetwood Mac, Stevie Nicks wasn’t just a pretty face. She wrote the lyrics to many of the band’s chart-topping hits, which earned them a best-selling album of the year (Rumours) in 1977 and a Grammy in 1978. She was known for her powerful stage presence and had America crushin’ on her….hard.
Her shaggy blonde hair was coupled with a poetic mind and her sincere voice mesmerized audiences. Men wanted to be with her, and women wanted to be her. Because of that, her signature bohemian gypsy style became very popular. She didn’t just embody ‘70s culture…between her music and her fashion, she shaped it.
Stevie Nicks today
Stevie Nicks went on to have a very successful solo career and is widely considered to be one of the greatest singers and songwriters of all time. Though she struggled with a drug addiction for many years, she has overcome that. She continues to make music and released an album in 2014 that landed on the Billboard charts.
As a living legend, Nicks continues to influence music. Artists including Beyonce, Taylor Swift, and Lorde (among others) all cite Nicks as a major inspiration in their careers. She interviews occasionally and doesn’t shy away from taboo subjects. She also started a charity foundation for wounded soldiers and dedicates much of her time to that.
Queen of the Silver Screen, Jane Fonda
No discussion of women that dominated in the 70s would be complete without Jane Fonda. By the time the decade started, Fonda already had a successful acting career and an Oscar nomination under her belt. She would rule the silver screen for the whole decade and picked up two Oscars along the way.
Jane Fonda also became politically active during this time, which made her somewhat of a controversial public figure. She was very outspoken about her opposition to the Vietnam War, publicly supportive of the Black Panthers, and became one of the spokespeople of the second wave feminist movement.
Redefining roles: Jane Fonda today
Jane Fonda looks so good that it’s hard to believe she recently turned 80. But even so she hasn’t slowed down one bit. On the contrary, she currently stars in a critically acclaimed Netflix series called Grace and Frankie, which was renewed for a fifth season earlier this year.
Over the years she was married and divorced three times, and had her daughter Vanessa. She has also published books and remained very politically active in a variety of causes. She co founded the Woman’s Media Center, an organization that aims to increase women’s representation in media, and also provides leadership training. Say what you will about her politics, you can’t deny the woman is a force of nature.
Prehistoric babe Raquel Welch
Raquel Welch was the Emily Ratajkowski of the ‘70s, in that her debut to the limelight didn’t involve much talking… and when you look like Raquel Welch, words aren’t necessary. Between her sun kissed skin, hourglass figure, and strawberry blonde locks, Welch was a dazzling head turner.
She only had three lines in the movie that catapulted her to sex icon status, but the scenes of her filling out a doeskin bikini on a beach were more than enough to make mouths all across America salivate uncontrollably. That was enough to open a lot of doors for her acting career, and she starred in and/or produced a dozen movies in the disco decade.
Raquel Welch today
In looking at a recent picture of her you would never guess the vixen of the ‘70s, is in her late 70s. She’s going the fine wine route, however. Welch continues to land acting and modeling roles, though over the years she has tried to separate herself from her sex symbol status and taken on more serious roles.
Over the course of her life, she married and divorced four separate times before stating that she does not plan to marry again. Though she is now in her 70s, she continues to consistently rank on “Hottest Women of All Time” lists. Fun fact: A poster of Welch’s fur bikini scene appears in Andy’s cell in the 1994 film The Shawshank Redemption.
The Queen of Vegas, Lola Falana
“Her name was Lola, she was a showgirl…” Lola Flana was quite a Renaissance woman — she could sing, act, dance, and model with ease. With the help of a few of her famous friends, she moved her act to Las Vegas and went on to the become the highest paid act in Sin City during the late ‘70s.
She was eventually offered residency and her show sold out regularly. Though there’s no doubt that she was very talented, it didn’t hurt that she was a drop-dead stunner, either. Her dark, almond-shaped eyes and pillowy lips were enough to make Sammie Davis Jr. break his vows.
Lola Falana today
Sadly, Lola Falana has been struggling with multiple sclerosis (MS) for years. In one particularly bad episode, she became paralyzed and her vision, hearing, and speaking ability became impaired. Though she did make an impressive recovery, she would be struck with another episode some years later.
Now in her 70s, she has converted to Catholicism and her faith has become the central focus of her life. She does missionary work, primarily with orphans in Africa, and otherwise spends her time sharing her faith with others. She has, for the most part, receded from the spotlight, and her last known performance was in 1987.
I dream of Barbara Eden
When America tuned into NBC’s I Dream of Jeannie after a hard day’s work, they weren’t just in it for the dry sitcom humor. If finding a bottle and becoming the master of the genie inside wasn’t lucky enough, finding a bottle with a super sexy genie in a revealing get up who granted wishes was a ticket to the garden of Eden.
Barbara Eden played the busty midriff-showing, blonde-haired, blue-eyed genie that blinked her way into the fantasies of a generation… or several, as reruns were playing well into the ‘90s. All we’re sayin’ is, if the house is burning down, we’re going to take our chances and get that damn bottle.
Life after Jeannie
Though we can’t quite chalk up that face up to a healthy lifestyle and good genetics alone, if we look like her when we’re 87 we won’t be mad about it. She married and divorced twice, but the third time’s a charm, as she has been happily married to her current husband for almost 30 years.
Sadly, she endured a devastating personal tragedy in 2001, when her son was found dead in his truck. She wrote about her experience going through the stages of grief, as well as her 50-year career in Hollywood in her memoir, Jeannie Out of a Bottle, which made her a New York Times best-selling author.
Diana Ross reigned Supreme
Diana Ross was everywhere in the ‘70s: on the silver screen, television shows, on the radio, and on the cover of magazines. Though she initially rose to fame while with the successful girl Motown group, The Supremes, it was in the ‘70s that she left the group and started her solo career.
The beautiful doe-eyed singer took the crown and definitely reigned supreme in the big hair trend that was very popular at the time. She had a distinct and glamorous style, and was known for her glittery, flashy, or metallic dresses and jewelry that sparkled in the spotlight she was born to be in.
Diana Ross today
Today, the singer is in her 70s and still at it. The singer started a residency show at the Wynn in Las Vegas, and had a Billboard number one hit this year. Even five kids later, with which she has great relationships with, she can still rock a form fitting dress and work a microphone.
Ross’s long and vibrant career has spanned over five decades, and the Guinness Book of World Records declared her the most successful female music artist in history. She is also often credited with having discovered the Jackson 5, meaning we have her to thank for everything from “ABC” to “Thriller.” She set the standard of what it meant to be a true diva, and proved to the world that there ain’t no mountain high enough to stop her.
Socialite Bianca Jagger
Bianca Jagger was the queen of the scene in the ‘70s. The Nicaraguan beauty caught the eye of Rolling Stone front man Mick Jagger who was quick to put a ring on her finger and a baby in her belly. She was also a regular at popular nightclub Studio 54.
She was a paparazzi magnet, especially when out and about with her A-list friends like pop culture artist Andy Warhol. Bianca became known for her daring and sexy styles that combined the most popular fashions of bohemian, classy, and glamourous, and she made it look easy. With a face like that, she could make a potato sack look good.
Bianca Jagger today — humanitarian
By the time the ‘70s came to a close, her marriage with Jagger was over. That would be fine with her, because Bianca’s life was about to take a drastic turn away from the party life she was living. While visiting a refugee camp in Honduras she witnessed something terrifying that would alter her life’s trajectory forever.
She was so affected by the incident that she went into a life of charity work and advocacy, and remains devoted to human rights and environmental causes today. Her works have been recognized by over 15 different organizations, including the ACLU and the United Nations.
Marcia, Marcia, Marcia… oh Marcia. It doesn’t get much more girl next door than Marcia Brady. The natural beauty from a wholesome family had a sweet purity about her that reminded every man in America of that one friend’s hot older sister they had a big crush on growing up.
With her long, straight blonde hair, bright blue eyes, and preppy yet fitted good-girl outfits, Maureen McCormick nailed the role and Marsha Brady was (and still is) a household name. She was the type of girl you could bring home to mom but were also proud to show off to the boys.
Life after Marcia
McCormick, now 62, is a New York Times best-selling author for her autobiography entitled Here’s the Story: Surviving Marcia Brady and Finding My True Vibe, which chronicled her downward spiral after the show’s end. In recent interviews, McCormick has talked extensively about her struggles with addiction and eating disorders.
Since the show, due to her personal struggles, Maureen’s acting career fizzled out as she gained a reputation for being unreliable. She did several stints on reality TV, but has laid low from the business for over ten years now. She’s married to Michael Cummings, who she says helped her conquer her addictions and move on with her life. The two have one daughter and live in Los Angeles, California.
Golden girl Goldie Hawn
Goldie Hawn had a golden streak in the ‘70s, landing roles in one successful movie after another. Then after she won an Academy award she became a box office draw on her own. The petite, bubbly blonde with sparkly blue eyes had a great sense of humor and a youthful giggle that audiences found endearing.
She was known for her squeaky clean, goody-two-shoes image, and was decisively America’s sweetheart during the 1970s. Always seen with a beaming smile on her face, she radiated a warmth befitting of someone with a name like Goldie. The public just couldn’t get enough of her.
The golden years of Goldie
Goldie Hawn remains a Hollywood staple, securing roles in big movies. She is still a muse for paparazzi, tabloid and entertainment magazines. She has been with actor Kurt Russell for almost 35 years, and has three children, including actress Kate Hudson, who is a dead ringer for Goldie in the ‘70s.
A few years into her seventies, she has maintained her golden hair and big beaming smile. Unlike many celebrities, Goldie seems to have taken the pressures of life in the spotlight in stride. Goldie has a lot of life in her, and there’s not doubt we’ll be seeing more of her in the future.
Somali stunner Iman owned the world of fashion in the 70s. The leggy, statuesque model was the darling of all the biggest fashion publishers, including Vogue and Harper’s Bazaar. Her career produced photos that have endured the test of time and become iconic in the industry.
Her striking yet feminine features coupled with her East African accent and usually long neck caught the attention of the public, fashion designers, and renowned photographers, all of which actively sought her out. She embodied the high fashion industry in that she was more of a muse than a model — much like high fashion is more of an art form than it is cloths for the masses.
Today, Iman is a successful business woman and dedicates a lot of her time to charity. After 14 years in the modeling industry she caught the eye of superstar David Bowie. They got hitched and she remained married to him up until his death in 2016.
They had one daughter together, and Iman was also the stepmother to his son from a previous marriage. She has said in recent interviews that Bowie’s death has been very hard for her, and that since she has been “very lonely.” At 63, she looks like she has some secret deal with Father Time, and it is still easy to see the looks that made her a ‘70s fashion icon.
Aussie triple-threat Olivia Newton John
Australian beauty Olivia Newton John hit the ground running at the beginning of the ‘70s, with the success of her first hit single as a solo artist “If Not For You.” Her golden locks, preppy style, and good-girl looks caught the attention of the public, and her career would go on to span for decades.
As the ’70s went on she had a series of successful songs and albums that shot her to international super-stardom and won her two Grammy’s. Toward the end of the decade Newton John began to pursue roles in films, and in 1977 she was cast as Sandy in the blockbuster hit, Grease.
Olivia Newton John today
Olivia Newton John still records music (her most recent album was released in 2011) and performs for live audiences. She was also given a residency at the Las Vegas casino, The Flamingo. She married actor Matt Lattanzi with whom she had her only daughter, Chloe. She and Lattanzi divorced, and she was remarried to her current husband, John Easterling, in 2008.
Sadly, the singer has been off and on struggling with cancer since 1992. She was diagnosed once again in September of this year. In recent interviews, she has said that her husband has been very supportive of her during her recovery. If she can fight as well as she can sing we know she’ll be around for awhile to come.
Supermodel Christie Brinkley
Model Christie Brinkley was discovered in 1973 and soon signed a contract with Elite Model Management. The quintessential California girl with the bronzed skin, beach blonde waves, and bright blue eyes was wanted by brands and major magazines everywhere, including Covergirl and Glamour. Soon, she was everywhere — on the cover of major magazines, the face of make up lines, and modeling for many major fashion lines.
Her biggest break came when she first graced the cover of Sports Illustrated in 1979. The edition was so popular, she was contracted again for the cover in 1980 and again in 1981, making her the first model to have three consecutive Sports Illustrated covers.
Still featured in Sports Illustrated
Most people are beside themselves when they see how amazing Christie Brinkley looks today. Fourty years later the supermodel (now in her mid 60s) has barely aged a day. At 63, she was still modeling swimsuits in Sports illustrated. Talk about amazing genes!
Since the ‘70s she has branched out in her career to include illustrating, acting, entrepreneur, and philanthropist. She has been married and divorced four times, most notably to rock musician Billy Joel, and is the mother of three. She has won numerous awards from many different organizations including Rolling Stone, the Make-a-Wish Foundation, and the American Heart Association.
Susan day shot to fame after she was cast as hot big sister Laurie Patridge in the Partidge family. Both in her looks and in the role she played, Dey seemed innocent and maybe even a little unaware of how attractive she really was, making her all the more desirable. With her crystal blue eyes and earthy girl-next-door looks, she became one of the most sought after actors of the decade.
Between the successful show and the songs that came out with it (it was a song about a musical family on the road), she killed two birds with one stone, establishing herself as both an actress and a musical performer.
Susan Dey now
Susan Dey never really sought out the spotlight…the spotlight was just turned onto her. She went on to have a long and successful acting career and was awarded a Golden Globe for Best Actress for her role in her post-Partridge Family drama LA Law. After that, she willingly receded from the spotlight; her last acting role was in 2004.
Now in her 60s, she has several published books on her resume, and currently enjoys a quiet life in in upstate New York with her husband. She quietly does charitable work with UCLA’s Medical Center. She has one daughter from a previous marriage.
The original blonde, Debbie Harry
With her signature bleach blonde hair (fitting for the lead singer of a band called Blondie) and smoky eye makeup, Debby Harry was that super cool but still really hot chick that radiated style. She had the face of a playmate (she was one before her music career took off) and the attitude of a rockstar.
Besides being a regular at the hottest clubs in the US, Debbie rode the rise of the music video to superstar fame. She experimented with her style, and whenever she sported a new look, girls across America were quick to follow suit and rock whatever look Debbie had worn the week before.
Debbie Harry, a living legend
Now 71, Harry continues to make music and perform for crowds decades after Blondie’s initial rise to fame, including a 2014 guest appearance at Coachella. She still had her signature blonde hair and smoky eye look, and is known to attend fashion events — fitting for someone who’s personal style guided mainstream fashion for decades.
In recent years, she has become more outspoken on political issues. Debbie has said that Elton John inspired her to devote her time to charitable causes. She has worked with various organizations that advocate for the environment and cancer research and treatment. Rock on, Debbie.