when i first started blogging almost six years ago, at the age of 56, the hot topic was style rules for over 50 women. there was much discussion of the “do’s and don’ts” of style for mature women. it seems we were deathly afraid of making a fashion faux pax when we turned 50 and were constantly reminded if we did. frankly, all the lists compiled by 30-something fashion editors telling women over 50 what not to wear make me cringe. anyone remotely connected with fashion knows that style is intensely personal no matter if we’re in our twenties, thirties, forties, fifties, and beyond. the style goal for any woman of any age should be how to look modern and fresh, not dated and stodgy. it’s time we focus on style secrets for women over 50, not what style rules we need to follow.
there’s no doubt the current fashion landscape can be confusing since we’re constantly being reminded to “look ten years younger” while at the same time we might very well be “mutton dressed as lamb,” and God forbid we’re “trying too hard.” personally, i’ve never wanted to look younger – i love being 62. what’s wrong with looking my age? i’ve also seen plenty of lamb dressed as mutton, and i give credit to anyone anywhere who is out there trying, whether it’s too hard or not. it’s fashion, ladies, not neurosurgery. it’s okay if we make mistakes now and again. good heavens, i’m happy to still be making mistakes. they remind me i don’t know everything, and i never will. but mistakes should never keep us from experimenting or adjusting to our ever-changing bodies, skin, and hair. it’s high time to remove those negative fashion phrases from our vocabulary and focus on the positives of style that will help us look and feel our best. so today, i’m sharing style secrets for women over 50 – not style rules.
1. style secrets for women over 50. honor the event.
this one style secret has kept me in good stead for over 50 years. since i was a young girl, i dressed for the occasion. if i’m headed to a wedding, i want to honor the event. that’s when i pull out my pearls and my best dress and pay close attention to my makeup. on the flip side, if i’m going to a holiday party or attending a baseball game, i still honor the event. who doesn’t love to put on a festive holiday outfit? or slip into a pair of blue jeans if you’re seated in a stadium? and, yes, weddings, parties, and sporting events have been put on a temporary hold. but we all look forward to the day when we will have all three back in our lives.
2. style secrets for women over 50. show more, show less.
whenever i wear a shorter skirt, i adjust the height of my heel. the shorter the skirt, the lower my heel. it’s a simple style secret to show less of one body part when you’re showing more of another. if you wear an off the shoulder blouse or show more cleavage, then forgo that short skirt in favor of a midi-skirt or a pair of slacks. to be sexy, you need a bit of mystery.
3. style secrets for women over 50. dress comfortably.
style is all about form and function. which simply means your outfit needs to feel as good as it looks. a skirt too tight or lingerie that pinches takes all the fun out of your day or evening. clothes have a way of transforming us from the outside in. while we want to have fun with style, our clothes need to fit beautifully, so we’re not tugging or pulling a blouse or skirt into place. that goes for shoes too. who wants to be on vacation (yes, we will travel again) with a pair of shoes that give us blisters? so remember to dress comfortably.
4. style secrets for women over 50. add trends judiciously.
of course, we want to stay modern, fresh, and relevant. but we should filter trends into our wardrobe judiciously. pay attention to current hairstyles, makeup, and skincare. nothing is more aging than an outdated haircut or makeup that’s stuck in the 1970s. and skincare has come a long way, baby! there are so many a-ma-zing products that help our skin look and feel its best.
let’s talk trends. do you love distressed jeans, wide-leg pants, or mom jeans? then go ahead and wear them. style doesn’t have an expiration date, ladies. there is no such thing as age-appropriate outfits. if a trend catches your eye, why not experiment? how about faux leather pants? if that’s your jam, then don’t worry what others think. and there’s nothing more comfortable and chic than wearing sneakers with a dress. style is always about personal preference. am i right?! platform sneakers might not be to your liking and vice versa. so go ahead and add trends judiciously, not blindly. because we need to stay abreast of what’s modern, fresh, and relevant, especially after the age of 50.
5. style secrets for women over 50. wear the right lingerie.
have you ever worn the wrong bra with a simple tee shirt? maybe it was a beautiful lace bra that looks amazing underneath a silk blouse but just isn’t quite right with form-fitting fabric? been there. done that. or how about a bodycon dress that showed every lump and bumps? well, there’s help, ladies. it’s all about wearing the right lingerie with the right outfit. nude or flesh tone bras and panties need to be worn underneath white. a tee-shirt bra should be worn underneath tees and tight-fitting sweaters. and Spanxx came to the rescue years ago with shapewear that helps conceal a myriad of figure flaws. if you’re interested, i have an entire blog post devoted to lingerie.
is the Founder and CEO of Style at a Certain Age. She writes Sundays-Fridays on all topics ranging from fashion, health, wellness, home design and more.
She’s 63, 5’8, and size 8.
I loved this posting – great advice! I am not someone who wears jeans with holes. However I loved your patched jeans!
those jeans are one of my all-time favorites from my favorite designer – Ralph Lauren.
Love your style blog as I am a gal of 60 yrs…
Could you tell me more about the white lace dress on the first photo with the beautiful wrap,
Who makes it and the label?
that dress is actually peach but it’s six years old from Zara. the same with the scarf.
Bravo! I too am 62 and you’re spot on. I enjoy reading your articles. They’re well thought out, uplifting, and informative. Style isn’t just for twenty somethings. As a matter of fact women ‘at a certain age’ can do style much better than the girls.
couldn’t agree more, elizabeth! thanks for stopping by.
Me encanta tu estilo, te empecé a seguir en printerest, buscando estilos de pelo, de peinados, de color, luego me fuí por la moda, tus atuendos hermosos, y busque hasta que encontré tus publicaciones que me llegan a mi correo.
Soy una mujer de 61 años, próxima a cumplir los 62 el 30 de mayo.
Me identifico contigo y eres mi inspiración para vestir y combinar mi ropa.
Eres una bella persona, gracias por inspirarme a ser bella a cualquier edad!
Saludos desde Guadalajara Jalisco, México.
Best ever- but no shopping information. I covet the butter yellow leather jacket and scarf you wore in the first shot- please give sources for those-please! I am 10 yrs. older than you, and they were 10 of big changes physically. It might be fun to feature a 70+ who isn’t radical or dowdy- just real with sags and lines and choosing to keep coloring her hair but wanting to look so put together and approachable but real and true. Thanks Beth- you are such fun!
hi susan, many times on posts like this i pull from the blog archives. many of these photos are older so no relevant shopping links today, just style tips.
Thank you for a terrific post! I still wear many of the styles I wore in my twenties and thirties, updated versions of course, and I just love to play with color.
style is all about what you love to wear!
Thank you once again for all the work you put into writing your blog. This is a great post.
awww, you made my day! thanks so much.
I love reading your blog everyday and especially today. It just seems at times we are never going to move forward in life with travel, weddings, games and so on but I know we will. And today with all your great outfits, you gave me the lift I needed. Thanks!!
this too shall pass. thanks for stopping by!
Spot on. Couldn’t agree more with your comments. I am turning 74 this year and love to dress well. Just purchased a pair of Converse high top sneakers to wear with my jeans and cigarette pants-so much fun! My son suggested it-he thinks they look great and I do too. One thing I would add would be taking care of our teeth which helps our smile. Our teeth naturally yellow as we age and bleaching them adds life to our smile. Great content.
that sounds adorable! i may have to steal your ideas.
I like how you inspire fashion in mature women!
As a woman @60+,
I want to avoid “the frump”
Love your ideas that help me use what is already in my closet!!!
thanks so much. i so appreciate you being here.
Thanks for the tips. Sometimes we
forget it is the little things we do to
be more confident and look modern.
i think all of the little things add up fast to helping us look and feel our best.
I love your blog, you tube and instagram. This post was so interesting for women over 50. I just turned 70 and have been a widow for quiet awhile. Also I stay at home and don’t go out very much since all of this virus has been going on. I seem to wear the same thing every week and need to change that because I have started feeling very frumpy and old. I would love some comments to this. Thanks again.
So glad you’re an advocate for women being their best, regardless of age.
Love your blog love your style. I am 10 yrs older, don’t look or act or it. Some days I feel it but pass on that. I love to get dressed up casual or dressy, love wearing jewelry and makeup. Really miss this during this pandemic. I love your styles and do copy them most by of the time. Keep sending can’t wait to be able to entertain and go out and entertain again.
One rule I have during this whole thing is I do put eye liner and mascara on everyday, it makes me feel alive.
Thank you again!
So true on all counts
What a timely and refreshing post, Beth.
I would never have thought to wear the red plaid shirt tucked into a skirt – wow, wow, wow. I am determined, also to add the faux leather leggings to my wardrobe, now, as I have just added a black sweater tunic, and am in love with the look you did. Of course, we all, I am sure, love your leather jacket. It is so unique. The sleeves make my heart go pitter pat 🥰
Thanks again for reminding us, that we should and can be, women in all our glory, regardless of age. 🥂
I do agree. It is best to dress your figure and fitness, not your age. You have very nice legs and the shorter skirt looks good on you. I find taking a quick photo or two is really helpful in determining if a style or outfit suits me. Thank you for a practical article.
Hi Beth, l love your blog, your wonderful sense of style and all your positive and achievable tips to stay current.
I thought of one other item to keep current, maybe every five years, or so. It’s the frames on our eyeglasses for those of us who wear them all the time.
I look forward to everyone one of your blog posts.
Excellent advice. I am a 67-year-old girl who will always love primping and dressing up. It never fails to delight me. Thank you for this post.
Late Sunday Evening comment…FANTASTIC post and equally FANTASTIC comments! Want to encourage Blog Sister Diane who mentioned finding she wears the same thing every week. Time and again, I’ve stumbled onto new looks with the same pieces in the closet! Placing this item against that one, at times strictly by accident, and voila, a new look to try emerges! Of course, new items are always fun, too 🙂 Beth, embracing our age is sound advice, for in doing so, the resulting glow benefits us and those around us. Hugs! ~
I’ve enjoyed your daily posts and I love your fresh, classy style. Thank you!
Another great blog! For me, this whole gracefully aging begins with my mental attitude. I don’t want to close the door on new style ideas if I haven’t given them a try. I saw a dressy top once and thought it was far too fussy for me. Then I saw it featured on someone very similar to myself, and I loved it.
I also do some facial exercises to help insure that I can have a quick, natural smile.
Our age, our jean size or what the scale says are numbers that have plagued us for years. We just have to love ourselves first and then we can shine!
Your choice in wardrobe looks so beautiful on you. Wish I felt the way you look. Beautiful
Good Morning Beth
Just to say how refreshing your blog is, your style and enthusiasm truly lift all our spirits. It’s great that you have made a career out of fashion and encourage so many to enjoy the everyday business of dressing or ‘thinking about the concept’ of looking good and working it into our lives, as I think it’s more important than many people think or believe! It is much more about how we feel about ourselves and why shouldn’t we look reasonably good every day or just Fabulous on certain days!
I send my Best Wishes from Scotland and hope soon we can return to enjoying life ‘Covid Free’
I am 70 Years old and love your blog.
I make notes to what I like and add it to my shopping list, I then, when it is time go through my list and see what I must purchase for the season ahead. We are in our summer season now. I can’t buy everything but it helps me stick to the rule.
Nice post today Beth, good information and always goods looks!
Well I feel like the baby here since I’m only 42 – but I love your classic style and writing, and because my mam was a geriatric nurse and I sometimes popped into work with her, I’ve always known that you can pick up great wisdom from those older and more experienced.
And I think so many of these tips are right for women of all ages. Even in my 20’s I didn’t display all the goods – back then I wanted to look sexy, at least for my night out looks, but still knew that what looked best was to cover up all but one or maybe two “assets”.
LOVE the empowerment message you have today. We should aim to be our best selves every day, and not hide from who we are in any way – our age, our appearance, our greys, whatever it is. Our life experience makes us who we are and should be valued. Much as I loved my 20’s and 30’s and had a lot of fun in them, I’d not go backwards when there is so much to look forwards to!
welcome! i so appreciate you being here. yes, style is for women of all shapes, sizes and ages.
You always look fantastic. Love your hairdos, clothes etc……However, we don’t all have trim figures. Could you include some clothing advice for the full figured….size 18, 20!
I love your sense of style. While I know nothing is effortless, you make it seem so.
I have a blast reading your blog everyday and finding new ways to incorporate some of my stuff into new outfits!
i so appreciate you being here!
Women over 50 usually hesitate to try out various trends and style fashions as they don’t feel confident about when they were young. But age was never a barrier when it comes to being stylish and fashionable.
These style secrets that you have shared will make women over 50 to style more freely and confidently. Thank you for sharing this information with us.
This was my favorite of all your blogs—-so far! 🙂 I loved all the different outfit choices, and I loved the comments about dressing for the occasion. I guess you could say that everything was applicable to me. I am 74 and still enjoy having fun with clothes, jewelry, make-up, and shoes. I don’t try to copy my beautiful daughters-in-law, but I do want to look as nice as I can. Thanks for your encouraging words!!!
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