Fashion Tips for Women 40 & Over

Written by pauline gill
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Fashion Tips for Women 40 & Over
(ClickArt by Broderbund)

Your children are grown, you're doing well in your work, you feel good about who you are and you're over 40 years old. How do you dress for this new stage of life? The first step in dressing for over 40 is realising that your body is changing, so what worked in the past may not necessarily work now. It's time to give your wardrobe an overhaul, dress to enhance your good points, lighten the colours, change accessories, ignore the trendy clothes and throw away the mini skirt.


One of the biggest mistakes women make as they age is that they don't change their look. They try to hold on to the past. Your body is changing even though you may exercise and have a good figure. Your skin is paler and duller. Your hair may be thinner, and your body has reshaped itself regardless of exercise. The reality is you are not 20 anymore. It's time to enhance your maturing body.


Examine your body. What are your assets and what is changing? If you are starting to get wrinkles in your neck, you may want to look for high-collared tops. If your hair is thinning, consider a new short haircut with highlights. If your skin is dulling, shop for lighter colours such as white or pink blouses. If you are heavier than you were in your 20s and 30s, look for tailored clothes. This is the time to spend more money on clothing. Shop at stores with stylish clothing for the maturing woman, such as Chico's and Liz Claiborne.

If you have nice legs, wear skirts and great shoes. Skip the mini skirt and go for a nice pencil shape that touches just above the knees. If you have nice shoulders, show them off appropriately. It's only necessary to show a little skin.


Staying stylish doesn't mean buying trendy clothes. It means finding what works for you. As you age, the best way to keep with trends is to keep stylish with a few accessories. Buy a new pocketbook or add a piece of jewellery. You want to concentrate on what looks good on you, not the trend. A few accessories show that you are aware of fashion changes, but you are not willing to wear something just because it's trendy. This is the mark of the mature woman.


As women mature, some want to hold on to their youth so they may try to dress like they are 20. All this does is make them look like an older woman trying to dress younger. Another error older women make is dressing in baggy clothes to hide their changing bodies. Baggie clothes are not appealing. Instead of sweaters, look for shirts and blouses. Toss the sweatshirts and sweatpants.

Don't wear low-cut jeans. They are not appealing on an older woman. Find a good pair of jeans that doesn't show everything when you bend over. Look for tailored fitting jeans that can go from shopping to dinner.

Keep the sneakers for exercise. Look for comfortable but stylish shoes.


Look at stars you admire and see how they dress. Katherine Hepburn had a signature look even in old age. Candace Bergen, a former model, still looks young, but she wears high-collared shirts or scarves to cover her neck. Oprah struggles with weight but still looks stylish. Diane Keaton has fun with clothes. She knows how to dress for her age, but she looks vibrant.

Get a new haircut, buy better quality clothes, know your colours, accent your good points, learn to cover your ageing areas, work with accessories and smile.

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