Hairstyles for plus sized women over 40

Updated February 21, 2017

Women over 40 years of age, with a few extra pounds, have two very unique challenges when selecting a hairstyle. They must select a cut that has a slimming effect and draws attention away from unflattering facial features, such as jowls, while emphasising the eyes and cheek bones. They also must select a hairstyle that is mature and stylish for their age without looking too trendy.

Flattering Cuts

A medium-length shag cut is very flattering on a heavier face and very stylish looking on women over 40. The hair should be no longer than shoulder length, and the ends of the hair should have a light, bouncy curl to gently frame the neck and face. Long-layered cuts are also very flattering as they elongate the neck and face. A shorter, pixie cut with layers and texture is a great choice for an easy-care style.


Avoid heavy, straight fringe in favour of a fluffy, textured look. Heavy fringe cut the length of your face, which makes it look rounder and heavier. Instead, try a light bang treatment that swoops from one side of the face to the other. Use texturing scissors to feather the fringe and give them definition.

Straight Hair

Straight, flowing hair is flattering on heavier women. It slims the face and draws attention to the shoulder area, adding length to your overall profile. Avoid a length past the mid-back as hair that is too long can look dowdy. For a more stylish look, layer your hair to add emphasis to your cheek bones if you have a square face. If your face is rounder, leave your hair one length. Add volume to your long hair to make your face appear smaller.

Curly Hair

Avoid adding lots of curls to your hair if you are overweight. This adds weight to your face. Instead add volume to the top of your hair with styling mousse or gel. If your hair is naturally curly, cutting your hair in a pixie cut will add emphasis to your eyes and cheekbones.

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About the Author

Si Kingston has been an online content contributor since 2004, with work appearing on websites such as MadeMan. She is a professional screenwriter and young-adult novelist and was awarded the Marion-Hood Boesworth Award for Young Fiction in 2008. Kingston holds a Bachelor of Arts in English from Mills College.