Helen Ruth Winkle (Baddiewinkle)

The 90-year-old That Has 3.8 Million Instagram Followers
May 8 - Sarah Ashlock


One of the best gifts you can give, IMO, is something from the heart. Now, as nice as a homemade card is, you’re a grown-ass woman and you need to step it up. One idea that costs little-to-nothing is a family or friends movie.

Chances are you have 27.3 million hours of video from the last few years. Free up some of your computer’s storage space by curating your own short film with some of your favorite moments. Add music that embodies the vibe; add transitions; heck, you can even add that Kermit the Frog meme. You aren’t taking this to Sundance, so make it your own.

WOMEN IN NUMBERS: More than 1 Million

Videos are hella powerful. When advertising execs were surveyed back in 2008, 27.8 percent said a video needs to get more than a million views to be considered a success. Though the view count rises with every refresh of your YouTube makeup tutorial, unique IP addresses better identify actual popularity. What’s a video that has impacted you in 2019?

WOMAN TO WATCH: Helen Ruth Winkle (AKA "Baddiewinkle"), Internet Personality

Instagram is full of influencers and personalities, and my guess is that when you think of what those people look like, you think of skinny white girls who seem to always be watching a sunset or striking a yoga pose. My favorites, though, are the real ones who tell it like it is and share what their daily lives actually look like, wrinkles and all. Helen Ruth Winkle is one of those women.

In case you haven’t heard, Helen Ruth Winkle is taking the Internet by storm. Dubbed “Baddiewinkle,” this 90-year-old’s rise to stardom began with a photo. When Helen was hanging out on her 60-acre farm in Kentucky, her great-granddaughter snapped a photo of her. It went viral. What was the picture, exactly? It featured Helen, front and center, in cut-off shorts and a tie-dye shirt.

Helen spent most of her life as a factory worker, ordering gauges for machines. She was a dedicated mother and grandmother, going to every event her family participated in. On her 35th wedding anniversary, her husband died in a car accident. Later, her son would die from bone cancer.

Helen spent her days in mourning and, as she puts it, she got “tired of grieving.” So, she reinvented herself. Now, she’s sporting neon and rainbows and cannabis symbols and, with the help of her family, becoming an icon for millennials. With nearly four million social media followers, Baddiewinkle displays her feisty thoughts and words of wisdom.

In her retirement years, Baddie has made a second career of sorts. She’s starred in a Smirnoff commercial, walked the red carpet and has participated in her fair share of sponsored posts. Baddiewinkle makes 90 look cool. Whether she’s posing in a Tweety-bird swimsuit or hanging out with Miley Cyrus, you can’t help but stop and appreciate her fervor for living life by her own rules.

Baddiewinkle shows that there’s no one-size-fits-all person, or great-grandmother. The best person to be is yourself.


Helen Ruth Winkle said:

"Even when I was 75 I never dreamed I'd be doing what I'm doing at 87. But I am doing what makes me happy. ... Everyone needs to find what makes them happy."

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