You don’t have to look young to be attractive. It’s sad to see women fail to love themselves because they feel less valuable with age. When grey hair appears, many women experience pangs of sorrow. But fighting against the natural aging process wastes so much time and energy!
Most women over 50 avoid clothing, makeup, and hair that lets their personality shine through.
My method for helping women age powerfully is to recognize those deep-seated biases we hold and break through the stigma of age. You CAN look incredible in trending long hairstyles or a choppy pixie.
Your value isn’t diminished by time, appearance or behavior.
You are important and unique.
I love to help women figure out who they are and then choose a style that best suits their personality and shape. Choosing a wardrobe, makeup palette, or hairstyle is SO much easier when you know your Energy Type. Here is a blog that covers my favorite short hairstyles for over 50. Also check out my favorite fashion tips for women over 50.
How Does Your Energy Type Affect Hairstyle?
If you’ve already taken my Energy Type quiz, you know what Type you are. It might be a new concept for you that your Energy Type is going to play a role in helping you choose a hairstyle.
Your Energy Type explains how you see the world and want the world to see you. Depending on your Energy Type, you’ll learn how to choose a hairstyle that’s light and airy, calm and flowing, edgy and dynamic, or traditional and bold.
Every person expresses one of the four Energy Types.
Type 1: Light and energetic, element of air.
Type 2: Relaxed and flowy, element of water.
Type 3: Passionate and dynamic, element of fire.
Type 4: Stable and grounded, element of earth.
Don’t assume you know your Type. If you haven’t taken my quiz yet, you should. Sometimes, we don’t really admit to who we are because we are projecting who we wish we were. There is freedom in understanding yourself on a deep level.
When it comes to your hair, all styles are merely a visible reflection of who you are. Your hairstyle is going to help solidify the first impression. If you pick a hairstyle in line with your Energy Type, it will help convey this crucial part of your being to anyone around you before even one word is spoken.
What Happens to Hair as You Age?
The next question you might be asking is, “Should my age impact my hairstyle?”
Well, yes and no. While there is no “wrong” hairstyle for an aging woman, the hair is changing, and some hairstyles aren’t going to work as well as others. Taking into account your age for a short hairstyle simply means choosing something flattering for you. The best short hairstyle will account for any age-related challenges you might experience, like greying roots or thinning hair.
Common Hair Changes with Age
Female pattern baldness is extremely common. Many people don’t realize that 40% of women face hair loss by age 50. This may present as a widening part or just overall thinning.
You might notice that your hair becomes duller and more brittle with age.
Over time, the body also stops producing as much melanin. This is the pigment that gives your skin and hair color. With a lower production of melanin, your hair may turn gray or white.
The scalp also produces less sebum with age, leaving every hair shaft thinner and wirier in appearance. This can lead to a dry scalp and dull hair.
Anti-Aging Hair Care
What can you do about aging hair? As one study explains, hair color, quality and quantity often suffer from age.
A holistic approach is going to include choosing gentle, natural products for your hair and a naturally flattering haircut.
Do not skimp on your hair products!
The right products will be gentle, strengthening and moisturizing. Different hair types are going to need different kinds of products. Fine, thin hair will need lighter oils and proteins. Thick, coarse hair is going to need heavier creams and oils.
If you struggle with flat hair, a root lifter can help add some youthful volume-especially for a curly bob or short curly hairstyle that needs extra bounce. For dry hair or flyaways, a moisturizer on the length of the hair (not the roots) can help lessen the frizz or poufiness.
Sometimes, you need to use more leave-in moisturizing products as you age. If you use too much, your hair starts to feel like lotion or oil is sitting on top. A deep treat mask can be used weekly to provide extra moisture and protein for healthier hair.
Use good styling tools!
Heat damage is a big problem for aging hair. When you are young, your hair is quicker to recover. From the flat iron and curling iron to hair blow driers, there are a lot of heat tools made for the hair. They are not all made equally!
Choose tools that can work on very low levels of heat – especially when blow-drying, since that is easy to do with cool air. The lower the heat level, the less damage you do to your hair.
You can also get a protective thermal spray or protective hair serum for the heat styling process. These products seal in moisture and mitigate the damage done by heat-based tools.
Follow good hair practices!
As you age, your hair and scalp will be more sensitive and fragile. You need to make sure you are carefully taking care of your hair. Certain things can cause damage, and a few simple modifications to your routine might make a big difference:
- When shampooing, use the pads of your fingers to gently massage the scalp
- Only brush your hair when it is full of conditioner (especially for long hair)
- Brush hair starting with the ends and try not to tear through tangles
- Only wear light, loose and breathable hats that don’t rub or suffocate the scalp
- Use gentle hair bands (like the wide elastic and tear-free bands), not rubber ones
- Long hair can be kept in braids (over buns) for a gentle and protective style
Find the right hairstyle!
Don’t get stuck in your ways. You might notice that many people get stuck on a specific style from their youth. While a particular style may have worked well for you in your 20s or 30s, times change, and so does your body (and personality). Who you were then is not who you are now, and sticking with a hairstyle from the 80s or 90s may make you look a little stuck in the past.
We want to adapt as we age. We do not have to be stuck.
Choose a hairstyle that expresses who you are NOW and is flattering for the hair you have.
If your hair is changing, embrace it! Find the hairstyle that helps your hair look thicker, fuller, and healthier. For many women, this means a trim or adding in long layers. But, there are so many options, whether you choose to go mid-length or short! So, find what works for you.
Why Does Age Make Shorter Hair Styles More Popular?
You might have noticed that many middle-aged women and older women sport short hairstyles. Why do older women have short hair?
Three reasons make short hair an excellent choice for women of all ages and especially popular for older women.
1. Short Hair Styles are Highly Practical
You will hit a point where your hair might seem like a huge hassle. For a lot of women, this shift happens when they have children. Suddenly, taking an hour (or more) just to wash and style hair is a luxury of time they simply don’t have. When you are working with little kids, long hair gets caught on little fingers and in the way of doing basic tasks. There are a lot of moms who go through the “big chop” during the early years if they are busy with children.
If you don’t have children, this same issue might pop up in your career. You realize one day that your hair is just a bother, and you can look professional and smart with a shorter haircut.
Or, maybe you’ve reached that age now. You want something shorter that is less of a hassle to wash, dry, and style. Some short hairstyles don’t even require styling with heat tools.
2. Short Hair Styles are Trendy
Both long hair and short hair can be beautiful and attractive. Short hair is typically easier to care for and faster to fully style. For those who want a trendy style, short hair is typically the way to go.
Hair length isn’t strictly an age thing. Getting a shorter haircut isn’t going to make you look older.
It’s easy to change up hairstyles when they are short. You can go from a mid-length, clean-cut bob to a pixie cut and then grow the hair back out for a layered, inverted, asymmetrical long bob.
You aren’t limited by one look or style with short hair. And (this is really important) you aren’t stuck with an “old lady” haircut. There are many options to express your personality and work with your hair type.
3. Short Hair Styles Combat the Symptoms of Aging
Have you ever seen someone with extremely long hair that got thin and straggly at the ends? Maybe you are that person. While it is completely a personal choice, the hair can look healthier and fuller with a shorter cut. Typically, the ends just aren’t as full as the hair near the scalp.
Different parts of the head may have different growth rates or different lengths of the growth phase, resulting in some parts growing longer, thicker, and faster than other parts.
When your hair changes, this difference becomes even more apparent, and the damage is more apparent as well. Getting your ends trimmed is one way to stop the damage of splitting ends and keep the hair growth cycles at a similar length.
Youthful and Short Hairstyles for Women Over 50
Women have been breaking the mold for decades now. Getting a short style doesn’t mean you will look like your mother or grandmother. You can be as structured and traditional or as wild and edgy as you want to be. A lot of this is going to come down to your Energy Type and what you feel comfortable expressing about yourself.
Charming Boyish Cut
Are you sweet and a bit on the serious side?
A very short haircut can be modern and sophisticated at the same time. The charming boyish cut has a pronounced rejuvenating effect. It visually makes the contours of the face clearer and lifts cheekbones. It’s a bit unexpected for women, but not so much so that you will stick out. It offers a hassle-free approach that often needs nothing but a bit of styling product for wash-and-go freedom.
The charming boyish cut can be a really great choice for a Type 2 or a Type 4. It expresses your ability to flow but shows a sensible, grounded approach. While it isn’t traditional, it is a very straightforward hairstyle. There is a little bit of no-nonsense in this haircut without being uptight or uppity.
You can add some texture and spikiness to it for an edgy look, or calm it down for a more refined look.
Short Pixie with an Undercut
Are you interesting and full of energy?
Go with a very edgy and adorable cut-the short undercut pixie. It’s a personal favorite of mine.😉 It’s very short on the bottom with plenty of textured hair piled on top. Usually, the front part is just a tad longer than the top back section as well. It’s an even more modern twist to the pixie cut.
This is a short pixie haircut for women over 50 that is suited perfectly for both straight hair or stubborn curls. It can be a visually slimming look because it pulls attention up toward the top of your head and creates the illusion of length.
It works well for a Type 3 personality because it signifies fire and motivation. The cut makes you look like a determined go-getter that might be a bit on the pushy side. While it could work well for a Type 1, it is a bit more hard-lined than the typical Type 1 personality. The right undercut pixie could be perfect for the Type 1 personality, though.
Spiky Gray Pixie
Are you outspoken and push boundaries frequently?
If you want to express a little bit of a rebellious side, the spiky gray pixie might be the perfect cut. This layered hairstyle is the complete opposite of a traditional female hairstyle. It’s super short, choppy, sharp, and shows off the “aging” color of gray hair in a spunky way.
Right now, gray is a highly popular hair color for older women. And, just because you are going grey doesn’t mean the grey of this hairstyle is your natural color. There are people of all ages dying their hair and adding a cool tone for a trendy silver color.
This cut is very similar to the short undercut pixie. The hair is voluminous on the top of the head, but it’s very short in the back. The layers are cut with lots of texture for a spiky finish. The cool gray color just adds to the overall “short hair, don’t care” vibe. It is flattering for an angular face because it mimics the lines of the face.
This is a good pick for a Type 3 who is a little on the demanding and persistent side of things. The hair is going to give off vibes of decisive action and a boisterous personality. People who get this hairstyle are projecting an image of embracing their age and leaning into the journey.
Natural Gray Pixie
Are you creative with a little spunk?
Bright white or silver hair looks elegant and chic. The natural gray pixie is untraditional and captivating, but a bit softer than the spiky gray pixie. This pixie is really cute for oval faces. You can go for longer layers on the top of the head to frame round faces.
This is a great style choice for Type 1 and Type 2. Even though these Types are very different in how they process energy, they are both typically people-pleasers and emotional types. The natural gray pixie expresses a personality that is not wild but also isn’t resistant to change. It can show flexibility and light-heartedness.
Because this is a fairly low-maintenance haircut, many find this a freeing cut. There is no need to touch up roots or do a lot of styling. Allowing your natural gray to show through isn’t for everyone, but it does signal that you are comfortable in your own skin as you age.
Shattered Long Pixie
Are you an old soul with a vivacious spirit?
This effortless style is one for the ages. The shattered long pixie cut gives a vintage bob look from the front with a pixie back. This is a top hairstyle option for older women because it is cute, easy, and trendy! The shattered look is achieved by texturing the ends of the hair and then defining the hair’s texture during styling. It’s a really great cut for thick, straight, or wavy hair.
The shattered long pixie offers a nostalgic nod to the 60’s pixie. But this little modern twist makes it fit for any generation! There is something vintage about it, without feeling “old” and expected.
This is a really great haircut for a Type 2 or Type 4. These are the more introverted personalities that are rarely very daring or interested in pushing the lines. It can be an ideal cut for hiding a long or large forehead without true bangs. It looks great on a longer (oval) face shape-think Twiggy or Audrey Hepburn.
Neat Chin-Length Bob with Layers
Are you practical and put together?
There are a number of different bob styles. The classic rounded bob creates a singular shape that offers a much more structured haircut than the asymmetrical or textured layers cuts. Not everyone will be able to keep a neat bob together.
This bob will hit right at your chin to show off your cheekbones and jawline. It adds definition to your face’s natural curves and makes you look younger. Layers are popular in short haircuts for women as they are created by cutting the hair at different lengths to give it a structured shape. These layers blend together for a bold and structured look. This hairstyle is not a great choice for thick, voluminous hair because it will start to look like a helmet.
This is a great haircut for someone who tends to be more organized and softer. Typically, it is going to fit a Type 4 personality the best-someone who is reflective, put together, and straightforward. Types 1 and 2 will likely be irritated with the upkeep, while a Type 3 will find this haircut feels at odds with their typical approach of more angular movements.
Short Bob with Blonde Tousled Waves
Are you a bit of a wildcard and sometimes scattered?
A great cut for fine hair is the short, tousled bob. The blonde color tends to give a lighter appearance to the overall look, though strawberry blonde or dark blonde are also popular options. The balayage is still a popular choice, allowing the hair to have a gradient down from darker roots to lighter ends. This angled bob cut will need a darker shade underneath, with bright highlights on top for a dreamy, sun-kissed look.
This velvety hairstyle is a very flattering haircut for free spirit personality types. It showcases a friendly and somewhat easy-going personality. The messy waves show a youthful and flexible person at heart.
That makes this a great haircut for Type 1 and sometimes a great option for Type 2. It is messy by nature, allowing room for the more go-with-the-flow energy types.
Fly Away Shaggy Bob with Bangs
Are you a little hardcore with a never-say-die spirit?
This messy-but stylish-look is perfect for the ladies with a lot of spunk and character. Go for a shaggy bob with a long shag bang to pull it all together with a modern twist. It’s pulled right out of the 70s and still just as trendy. It’s a bit more maintenance than you might initially think since those ends will need to be straightened to highlight the choppy hair texture of the shaggy bob.
But, the end result gives you a no-nonsense sass that implies you don’t always play nice. This is a charming, but edgy look that shows a little creativity and a lot of bold spirit.
This hairstyle is best for oval face shapes and fits both fine or thick hair. It looks good in any hair color, from the darkest shades to the lightest blondes. A tinge of color (like lavender highlights in silvery-white hair or brassy orange in a dark brunette) can really add some extra flair that pops out as you move your head.
The shaggy bob with bangs is a great style for a Type 2 personality that is going to be a go-getter. It can also sometimes work well for a Type 1 personality with a bright and electric kind of energy. If you don’t love the idea of bangs, consider the pixie bob instead.
Angled Ash Blonde Cut
Are you highly intelligent and classy?
As you get older, the face can get a little softer and the skin may sag a bit. You can contrast this with a fantastic angled cut that adds sharpness, drawing the focus to dramatic eyes and a pointed chin. This sleek hairstyle is sophisticated and intimidating in a subtle way.
The ash blonde color is a stunning tone that suggests sensibility with a very trendy edge. Blondes typically look a little more light-hearted, but this cooler ash color with a sharper cut will give you an elite look. The highlights are fine and blend into the lowlights for a lustrous color. This is a really great cut for straight fine or medium hair. It’s still a pretty short cut, but it allows you to keep medium-length hair in a simple style that extends to around shoulder-length.
This is a style that works well with a long or angled face that has started to soften with age. It contrasts smooth hair with a sharp edge-giving a no-nonsense finish. Because it is more of a serious cut, it fits a Type 4 personality who will be straightforward and introspective. In some cases, this works well for a Type 2 personality who is fluid by nature and detail-oriented.
Choppy Blonde Pixie with Long Side Bangs
Are you a boisterous go-getter?
This extended pixie is one of the most popular short haircut options among older women today. It gives a lot of texture and character without being too over-the-top. The finish is a tousled look, perfect for thinning hair. If you have less volume, you may use a root volumizer here to give it a little more life.
Teaming the pixie with long side side-swept bangs and choppy layers creates a final look that is mature with a youthful edge. This is an easy haircut to manage-it typically just takes a quick dry and some texturizing pomade. It gives off highly driven vibes for someone who is going to push hard and offers an analytical perspective.
If you are looking for a haircut that expresses consistency and compliments a more angular face, then this might be the right haircut for you. This is typically a haircut that works well for a Type 3 personality.
Natural Salt and Pepper Curly Pixie
Are you wise and grounded?
The texture of fine curly hair works great with a pixie cut, so here is another ideal option if your hair is getting a bit fine and brittle. It works well for thicker hair that has a natural curl (or a tight perm). This natural approach to graying hair is a fantastic look for a sophisticated woman.
The natural salt and pepper contrast will make your curls appear more voluminous with the color dimension. This is a very low-maintenance hairstyle that will only require regular trims to keep the edges sharp and perfectly shaped.
You will be able to get away with a dry-and-go approach to styling every day, using a little mousse, texturizing spray, or water-based wax pomade. You may need a root lifter for this haircut, depending on how long or short you choose to go with it.
This haircut is most ideal for a Type 2 woman. It’s soft, blended, and will add just the right amount of s-curve movement around her eyes.
Additionally, this haircut is also great for a Type 4 personality. This is a sensible and mature look that showcases stability and poise.
Burnt Orange Bob with Highlights
Are you fiery and spicy?
Nothing about aging needs to be boring or predictable. If you are a wildcard, there is still a mature look out there that will help you look younger without looking like a wannabe adolescent. A fiery burnt orange color is going to catch a lot of attention. You want to pull out the color with darker brown lowlights and brighter brassy orange highlights.
The bob can be a tousled mess of tight curls or a sleek hard-edge cut for straight hair. Either way, this hairstyle is still going to give a firecracker impression. It will show you are aging with spunk. A bob is classy, but the orange will give it an edge that’s impossible to ignore. You can also flatter a longer face shape by adding face-framing bangs.
I highly recommend going to a hairstylist for every hair cut and color-but this one more than all the others. If you aren’t a natural redhead (or are starting to cover the gray), this will look very unnatural coming from a box. You will get a much more flattering and attractive end result when a professional is using high-quality color products and adding highlights and lowlights.
This livewire cut is perfect for the high energy of a Type 1 or Type 3 personality.
Are you rocking into your old age?
I can’t stress enough that old doesn’t have to mean subdued. There is a real stigma about age that after a certain point we should slink out of the limelight and spend retirement in a corner somewhere. This shouldn’t be further from the truth. You have a lot to offer as you get older, and you should feel free to express that to the world.
The pompadour is loud and expressive, but not childish. It is typically paired with a rockstar personality-think of Pink or Rihanna. Most of the time, the sides are cut down to a short fade that is dramatically different from the long top. If you don’t want to go short, you can rock a pompadour hairdo by pulling it tight on the sides and poufing the top whenever you want to turn up the volume a bit.
This style works best with straight (or straightened) hair in order to get that smooth quiff. It also offers a lot of styling options. The pompadour cut is versatile, allowing you to slick it back for a sleek look or pull it forward with a side part for long bangs whenever you feel like changing things up.
A Type 3 is usually the one daring enough to rock this look. In some cases, a Type 4 pulls it off well too. It takes a lot of confidence and a longer face shape. It is a bold and grounded look that shows you aren’t backing down with age.
Finding the Right Style for You
I feel like far too often, we push aside women when they hit a certain age. I want to help women understand who they are and how they can express themselves.
Once you find the style that works for you, it is so liberating! It might seem silly or frivolous, but it’s not. You should be able to express yourself and feel comfortable in your own skin.
I help women discover their ideal looks with my Dressing Your Truth site. We don’t just choose the looks that are flattering to you on the outside-we also choose looks that will help your inner personality shine through.
Are you ready to feel incredible inside and out?
Head to Dressing Your Truth to get your free Beginner’s Guide and find the perfect outward projection of your beautiful soul.