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AARP Wants to Disrupt the Image of Aging 

Launch of The Disrupt Aging® Collection is part of multi-year initiative

AARP is intensifying its work aimed at rejecting the stereotypes associated with aging in media. As part of a multi-year initiative, the organization is pressing brands, designers, ad agencies and other industry players to change their immediate and long-term attitudes in order to overcome the misconceptions of aging portrayed in ads.

Today, in collaboration with Getty Images, AARP launches The Disrupt Aging Collection, a library of 1,400-plus images designed to paint a more accurate portrait of how people age in today’s society.

grandfather having a fun squirt gun waterfight with two grandchildren in his yard

Getty Images

a female welder over age 50 is smiling at work with her face mask flipped up to show her face

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“80% of people over 50 say marketers assume their lifestyle based on stereotypes.”  

— AARP Research


The media typically portrays people over 50 as dependent or socially isolated, which can perpetrate dangerous assumptions and fear among younger generations and consumers. In reality, older adults are in a stage of life that has endless possibilities, so it’s critical that marketers and product developers avoid clichés and recognize that an aging population can be a key driver of economic growth and innovation.

Images in The Disrupt Aging Collection reflect older adults who are working longer, starting families later, raising children and grandchildren, and acting as caregivers for multiple generations. They’re living vibrant lives full of travel, entertainment, dating, and technology. They’re buying beauty products and want clothes that make them look and feel good. They’re living their lives surrounded by people of all ages every day.

four images of older people, clockwise from top left are a senior man surfing, grandparents making pancakes in the kitchen with grandchildren, a group doing an exercise class, and a couple stopped next to their motorcycle at a scenic overlook

“People 50 and older generate $7.6 trillion in annual economic activity.”

AARP Longevity Economy Analysis

According to AARP’s Longevity Economy Analysis, people 50 and older generate $7.6 trillion in annual economic activity, and 62% of them would consider switching to a brand that represents people their age. Telling a new story of aging is good for business, and The Disrupt Aging Collection can help solve a critical business need.

AARP’s commitment to shape a new image of aging includes ongoing research, as well as industry activities at Advertising Week New York, and will continue with the release of the 2019 Longevity Economy® report in December 2019, and activations at CES and SXSW.

To view, license and use the photos from The Disrupt Aging Collection, visit

collage of  19 varied and diverse vibrant people over 50

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