Donna Mills, 81, says eating vegetables and lifting weights keeps her looking good

Donna Mills has had a very successful run in Hollywood.

The 81-year-old blonde beauty co-starred with Clint Eastwood in the classic 1971 film Play Misty For Me and later became one of the highlights of the Knot’s Landing series.

The Emmy winner also recently appeared in the Jordan Peele thriller Nope, and stars in a Lifetime film series, VC Andrews Dawn Cutler Series, which will be released in 2023.

Now the actress has spoken AARP – The Magazine about its longevity. “At age 60, 70, later, you have so much more to contribute — don’t just sit down and say, ‘I’m done,'” the screen icon shared.

Still a 10: Donna Mills has had a very successful run in Hollywood.  Seen in 2021

Throwback: The 81-year-old blonde beauty co-starred with Clint Eastwood in the classic Play Misty For Me and later became one of the highlights of the Knot's Landing series.  And she still looks great these days.  Seen in the early 1970s

Throwback: The 81-year-old blonde beauty co-starred with Clint Eastwood in the classic Play Misty For Me and later became one of the highlights of the Knot's Landing series.  And she still looks great these days.  Seen in the early 1970s

Still a 10: Donna Mills has had a very successful run in Hollywood. The 81-year-old blonde beauty co-starred with Clint Eastwood in the classic Play Misty For Me and later became one of the highlights of the series Knot’s Landing. And she still looks great these days

She is careful about her figure, she told the publication.

“During the soap opera, I never ate pasta, sugar, bread, ice cream, cookies, or anything like that,” Donna said.

“Now I eat, but I’m still careful,” she added. “I’m not a vegetarian, but I grow, pick and eat a lot of vegetables,” she noted.

‘I also play tennis three times a week and I train with light weights. Like almost everyone my age, I have arthritis, and I can tell you it hurts sometimes.”

Slinky star: Seen in lingerie for a 1975 pin-up shoot

Slinky star: Seen in lingerie for a 1975 pin-up shoot

Still a siren: Now the actress has spoken to AARP – The Magazine about her longevity. “At age 60, 70, later, you have so much more to contribute – don’t just sit down and say, ‘I’m done,'” the screen icon shared

She also discussed taking a break from Hollywood to raise her daughter.

Mills became a mother for the first time at the age of 54 when she adopted her daughter Chloe in 1994.

“I was single, I was 54 and I really wanted to be a mom,” the star said.

“It wasn’t a hard decision to adopt. So I stopped working for many years while Chloe [now 28, a model and an ex­ecutive at Soho House] was in school, and it was just the right thing to do.”

A big hit: Mills and Clint Eastwood in Play Misty for Me in 1971. The psychological thriller was directed by Eastwood

A big hit: Mills and Clint Eastwood in Play Misty for Me in 1971. The psychological thriller was directed by Eastwood

A big hit: Mills and Clint Eastwood in Play Misty for Me in 1971. The psychological thriller was directed by Eastwood

Romance came later, she said.

‘I met [actor and producer] Larry Gilman at age 60. I was lucky. Before him, I kind of went for the bad guys. But when I met him I just knew I was going for the not bad boy,” she said.

The star said she also keeps in touch with her Knot’s Landing costars.

Joan Van Ark and Michele Lee are still good friends 40 years after we played Knots Landing. We even come together for the fans. And some show up with that dramatic eye makeup like my character, Abby!”

She shared that playing the villain on Knot’s Landing cost her friends.

Dream cast: The star said she also keeps in touch with her Knot's Landing costars.  Joan Van Ark and Michele Lee are still good friends 40 years after we played Knots Landing.  We even come together for the fans.  And some show up with that dramatic eye makeup like my character, Abby!”

Dream cast: The star said she also keeps in touch with her Knot's Landing costars.  Joan Van Ark and Michele Lee are still good friends 40 years after we played Knots Landing.  We even come together for the fans.  And some show up with that dramatic eye makeup like my character, Abby!”

Dream cast: The star said she also keeps in touch with her Knot’s Landing costars. Joan Van Ark and Michele Lee are still good friends 40 years after we played Knots Landing. We even come together for the fans. And some show up with that dramatic eye makeup like my character, Abby!”

She played scheming vixen Abby Fairgate on the Dallas spin-off Knots Landing from 1980 to 1989.

“Back in the Knots Landing days, a lot of women in real life were very distant to me. I couldn’t figure out why. Then I realized it was my character. They thought I’d take their man!’

As for her future, she wants to work more.

“I’m in my third act and was recently cast in a new movie as a cruel, sadistic grandmother. And that’s what I really want right now, a whole series – like Succession, which I love – where I can be angry to my heart’s content!’ she said.

Back then: Donna played the role of Abby on Knots Landing and played the villain on the hit show for nine years before leaving in 1989.  Seen with Ted Shackelford

Back then: Donna played the role of Abby on Knots Landing and played the villain on the hit show for nine years before leaving in 1989.  Seen with Ted Shackelford

Back then: Donna played the role of Abby on Knots Landing and played the villain on the hit show for nine years before leaving in 1989. Seen with Ted Shackelford

She told in May People magazine why she decided to embrace motherhood in her 50s.

“I was very focused on my career, but at some point I realized something was missing – it was a child,” said the soap star.

She continued, “So I went after it. I adopted her when she was four days old.’

“By then I was 54 and people were like, ‘You’re going to get so old.’ [to] let a little toddler run around.” I never felt that,’ Donna said.

“I never felt older than the other moms who were probably in their twenties.”

Becoming a mother: In an interview with People magazine in May 2022, the actress explained why she decided to embrace motherhood in her 50s

Becoming a mother: In an interview with People magazine in May 2022, the actress explained why she decided to embrace motherhood in her 50s

Becoming a mother: In an interview with People magazine in May 2022, the actress explained why she decided to embrace motherhood in her 50s

The Daytime Emmy Award winner told the media that she would advise other career-minded people to put off parenthood until later in life.

She told People, “If you want to give something to your career, I say it’s better to have a kid later than to have a kid early.”

Donna, who appeared on television and in guest roles after leaving Knots Landing, explained that she decided to retire from acting full-time for 18 years to focus on raising Chloe.

Priorities: Donna, who appeared on television and guest starred after her departure from Knots Landing, explained that she decided to retire from acting full-time for 18 years to focus on raising Chloe.  Seen in 2005

Priorities: Donna, who appeared on television and guest starred after her departure from Knots Landing, explained that she decided to retire from acting full-time for 18 years to focus on raising Chloe.  Seen in 2005

Priorities: Donna, who appeared on television and guest starred after her departure from Knots Landing, explained that she decided to retire from acting full-time for 18 years to focus on raising Chloe. Seen in 2005

“I took 18 years off. I didn’t work,” she told People. “Well, I did work for the first few years.

She continued, “I did some movies for television and things like that because I could take her anywhere.

“But when she started school, I wasn’t planning on going out of town for two months straight. And I didn’t become a mother to give her to a nanny.’

The Play Misty For Me actress said she still shares a close bond with her now 27-year-old daughter.

Close: The Play Misty For Me actress said she still shares a close bond with her now 27-year-old daughter.  Seen in 2009

Close: The Play Misty For Me actress said she still shares a close bond with her now 27-year-old daughter.  Seen in 2009

Close: The Play Misty For Me actress said she still shares a close bond with her now 27-year-old daughter. Seen in 2009

Donna said, “We see each other at least once a week and we talk or text every day.”

The actress returned to daytime television in 2014 when she landed a recurring guest role on the ABC soap opera General Hospital.

She went on to win the Outstanding Special Guest Performer in a Drama Series award at the 2015 Daytime Emmy Awards for her performance.

In recent years, Donna has continued to act in television, films and theatre.

The artist will next star alongside Keke Palmer, Daniel Kuluuya and Steven Yeun in July in Jordan Peele’s upcoming sci-fi horror film Nope.

During the interview with People, the Chicago native also shared some of her tips for maintaining her timeless beauty.

“Usually I train every day,” said the octogenarian. “As a dancer, I have my ballet bar in a little gym upstairs, and I just got a Peloton for my birthday.”

She added, “I do strength training and a lot of stretching.”

Ageless: The Chicago native also shared some of her tips for maintaining her ageless beauty.  Seen in 2019

Ageless: The Chicago native also shared some of her tips for maintaining her ageless beauty.  Seen in 2019

Ageless: The Chicago native also shared some of her tips for maintaining her ageless beauty. Seen in 2019

As for her diet, Donna explained, “I’ve always been a healthy eater. I don’t eat sugar. I don’t eat pasta. I don’t do starch.’

She continued, “I eat mostly protein and veggies. I like vegetables that I grow – kale and arugula, tomatoes. My greatest pleasure in life is eating it right off the vine. I’m not a good cook. The only thing I make that tastes good is cheesecake.’

Donna told People, “For skin care, the most important thing is to stay out of the damn sun! It makes such a difference. And someone asked me, ‘Why don’t you make it? [cosmetic enhancements]?’ No, because I’m not going to look like a duck. I’d rather have lines than a duck’s bill.”

.