— ChloeFox (@iamchloefox) May 25, 2015
When you hear someone refer to Anderson Cooper, who turns 48 today, as a "silver fox," don't be alarmed; it's a term of endearment. "Silver fox" is used to describe an attractive older man.
While the term is not discriminatory, many men described as silver foxes have gray, white, or silver (!) hair. Basically, the term is used to give props to the guys out there who work the gray with charm and pride.
The term is said to have originated with the late Charlie Rich, an American country music singer of the 70s. The two-time Grammy winner won the hearts of many female fans. Like good wine, his looks only improved with age. Gray hair don't care.
Today, the nickname is granted to celebs like Anderson Cooper (happy birthday!), George Clooney, and John Slattery. It's use is pretty straight forward with little to no variation.
"George Clooney is SUCH a silver fox. Just look at that smile."
"I don't even care that his hair is gray...that just makes him a silver fox."
"It's so ironic that the geeky kids in high school always grow up to be silver foxes."
Here's a video of birthday boy Anderson Cooper getting pranked on live TV. What a silver fox: