Long Hair On Older Women – Sexy or Silly?

old-barbieDoes long hair on older women look sexy or silly? Christopher Hopkins, “The Makeover Guy,” has it right when he says it’s really not about age.

“It’s a combination of how young you appear, hair quality, and whether longer hair looks good on you at all, regardless of age.

If you’ve never looked good in long hair, you likely never will. But if you’ve always had long hair and it’s still holding out pretty well, meaning it’s thick and shiny and can be worn without a lot of what looks like work, then likely you can still wear it well.”

So true! Nothing worse than seeing a gal with scraggly long hair, trying to hang onto her youth by wearing long hair just for the sake of long hair.  Long Hair women 40 plus

On the other hand, I can think of a handful of women and plenty of celebs over 40 who look stunning with long hair, including Jennifer Aniston, Demi Moore, and Heidi Klum.

Long hair can look sexy but be forewarned. You’ll need lots of time and money for all the super high maintenance involved. Then you can have gorgeous locks like Salma Hayek, Kathy Griffin, or Beverly Johnson.

Long hair over 50

What about long hair over 50?


Do you like Meryl Streep with long hair?

I prefer her with short hair. Didn’t she look great in The Devil Wears Prada?


What about long gray hair?

Can a mature woman look fab in long gray hair?

Many of my readers love their long gray hair and have sent photos to show their long silvery locks. Here’s one of my readers, the beautiful Nancy Todd.  Scroll down and read her comment below!

long gray hair over 40
Reader Nancy Todd loves her long silver locks.

Another reader, Dulchy, sent in these photos to show off her long silver hair and how she loves to put it in a pretty French bun. See her comment below too.   log gray hair

gray bun
Dulcy, a reader, keeps her long gray hair in great shape and loves it pinned up.

long hair over 40

Here’s another reader, Diane, who says she loves her long hair and gets many compliments.

So ladies, what’s the verdict? Do you like long hair after 40? Do you have long hair or long gray hair? Send a good-quality photo to, and I may post it!

Still undecided about going long? Check out this other celebrity hairdresser’s post about the dos and don’ts of long hair over 40.  

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133 thoughts on “Long Hair On Older Women – Sexy or Silly?

  1. Long gray hair on older women just pulls down their faces, making them look older and, in some cases, silly. These women in pictures have lovely, thick hair, but most of us have thinning hair as we age.

  2. Almost all the women in all these pics have had plastic surgery. All of the celebrities have (duh). The only one that may not have is the last one – however she may have, it’s just not as obvious. She may just do Botox. Why don’t you show some non-celebrities over 50, without plastic surgery/Botox with long hair, with side-by-side pics of them with shorter hair (and by shorter, I don’t mean an ultra-short “pixie” cut, I mean shoulder-length or so). Then people could judge for themselves.

  3. I searched out this subject because I am actually having the opposite problem. I’m 46 and have been wearing my hair shoulder length or slightly shorter lately – and a guy at work keeps saying I should wear my hair longer (he’s never actually seen it longer b/c I’ve only been working with him for a short period of time).” I’m not sure why this guy even cares because he is my co-worker and doesn’t have a vested interest in how I wear my hair. (I am also married, and so he is he, BTW). Maybe I should be flattered b/c he clearly thinks I’m attractive and, like most men he sees longer hair on women as more attractive (at least in his mind) and feels I’d be even more attractive with longer hair. I’ve worn my hair long and short (not ultra-short pixie cut, chin-length “bob” is probably the shortest I’ve had it). I don’t think women over 40 such as myself generally look great with long hair, and women over 50 usually look pretty bad with it! It makes them look older and like they’re trying too hard to look “sexy” (LOL). The one exception is celebrities can usually pull this off b/c they’ve had lots of plastic surgery (and anyone with plastic surgery, Botox, etc. can usually look “decent” with longer hair a little longer). However, even these celebs and women over 50 who have had plastic surgery/Botox still all look best with hair that is about shoulder-length or shorter. People can do whatever they want with their hair, of course, that is just my opinion. Just like some people think older women look great with long hair (I would argue that all the pictures where older women truly look OK with it have had plastic surgery/Botox, though). It works both ways though. We should have the right to wear our hair shorter if we want, it none of anyone’s business. Deal with it.
    I’m probably going to have to tell this dude he’s being inappropriate soon, it is very awkward and weird that he’s so focused on my appearance.

  4. Reader Nancy Todd is a gorgeous woman and she has the most exquisitely thick and beautiful silver hair. Hopefully, however, her posted photo prompted many other readers to realize and tell her just how amazing she would look if she parted with ALL of that length and allowed her beautiful face and breathtakingly gorgeous long slender neck to become her true focal point. She would be stunning with an undercut pixie…her gorgeous nape clipper shaved and those lovely ears fully exposed.

    1. I, respectfully, don’t agree. To me, long hair on older women looks like they are desperately trying to look young and failing. Long, gray hair always makes the woman look old and tired. I don’t think older women must have “pixie” cuts, but long is not good.

  5. I’m 60 and I love my long hair! I will keep it long til the day I die. I have thick, wavy wonderful salt and pepper hair. I braid it, wear it in a bone on top of my head, straighten it, or let it go naturally. My parents, God Bless them, told me I’m too old to have long hair. I told them, sorry, not going to happen.

  6. Yes, I love my long hair! And every time I cut it, I instantly regret it. I get so many compliments on what friends and strangers call “gorgeous long hair”. Why do I listen to mom saying I should look my age??? At 56, I still love my long hair!!!

    1. No. Long hair brings your face down. Even young girls look stupid with long scraggly hair. They never seem to get it trimmed. Everyone looks the same. Ugly

  7. I’ve had “short/stacked ” hair. It was supposed to be easy-care, wash +go. Nope. I’ve never had to mess with my hair so much. Now it’s back to my shoulder blades. I can braid it, pin it, and let my grandkids play with it, making me feel like a Queen!

  8. When worn down I think it looks silly. You see the long hair, you expect a younger face. It’s actually aging yet people think they look younger.

    That said, I have long hair but I wear it up when I’m not at home.

    Personal preference though.

    1. Sorry Paige, but you are dead wrong.
      Long hair can (and does) look good worn down on older ladies.
      Why have long hair if your goal is wearing it in an old bun?

    2. Who cares what people ‘expect’? The fact that anyone cares is ridiculous. It’s your hair. Wear it any way you want. Pinning it up is a waste of good locks. Cut them off if you don’t bother showing them off.

  9. Well, my husband likes me with long hair. I am 50 and have long wavy gray hair. Praise God! I’m not here to entertain anyone or be anyone’s eye candy. I am comfortable with who I am and more women need to stop dying their hair and wearing so much makeup. Take control of your God-given freedom now!

  10. Women should do whatever makes them happy and not care what others think. ITs just hair and the most beautiful thing about a woman is confidence so rock that hair ladies no matter the length or the color just have fun life too short not too :)

    1. You are absolutely right! I’m in my early 50’s and my hair is 95% white (going gray early runs in my family). My hair is very long right now, almost to my waist. I don’t care that my hair color makes me look older (stopped coloring in my early 40’s). I love not having to color it. I’ve always looked better in very short hair, I know that, and I love pixie cuts. But, I also think braids are cool, and that’s why my hair is long right now. It has nothing to do with trying to look younger, or sexy, or whatever some of these dumb comments say. I don’t give a flip what other people think. When I’m sick of playing with braids, I’m sure I’ll go pixie again.

  11. Women should wear their hair however they like and however makes them happiest! I just turned 50 and my hair is the longest it’s ever been, and I love playing with it and trying different styles. Currently, I’m growing the gray out because it’s been a hassle to cover my roots since they’re WHITE white, and I had highlights added to blend them. I think it looks cool and I get compliments all the time.

    Ultimately, if I do get wrinkles (blessed so far — lucky genes and I avoid the sun), I’ll probably go right around shoulder length. My mom had long hair in an updo, Grace Kelly style, and she always looked elegant. She fought the gray until the bitter end, though!

  12. I’ve always had long hair and I love it because it’s easy. But… a few years ago I had thought and had my favorite beautician cut it off really short. Easy peasy. The problem is that she retired and now I can NOT find anyone who can cut a ‘sexy, older look’. They all cut my hair like I’m on my way back to the Senior Retirement home. I hate it. SO… here I am, turning white and I’m going through the pain of growing it long. For the last cut, I had the lady used a ‘razor’ on the back of my hair. I looked like I was wearing a football helmet. That was the last straw. I will grow into my eighties with long white hair that I will tie on my head. AGAIN.

    1. I think that’s the prettiest look anyway. Long hair tied up. It can look sophisticated or carefree. I love it. So nice even if it’s dirty you can just put it up.

  13. I’m an 82-year-old woman who detests everything I see about women’s hair these pandemic days. All this long unkempt hair is disgusting! Most of the long hair is made fuller with a FALL, then the head looks so large from the side it’s just terrible! I guess women have let their hair grow and grow because of salon shortages! Nothing is uglier than GRAY hair unless you are fortunate enough to have a beautiful color!

    1. I disagree and see countless photos online that show beautiful older women rocking their long gray hair. I say you be you and stop worrying about whether other women’s hair upsets you.

  14. I have had very long hair all my life and see no reason to cut it because of a number. You will never see me with short hair or with kt teased into one of those ugly football helmet styles. I will probably be buried in my Levis. All the middle-aged and elderly women I knew growing up wore ugly polyester slacks and pantsuits. I thought they were ugly then!

  15. I am 50 years old and have been growing out my naturally strawberry blond hair. It’s getting a little bit white around the sides, but the younger women have been asking me if I have been coloring it because it looks “platinum.”

    I decided to grow it out for a couple of reasons. First, I became tired of paying money for haircuts I wasn’t happy with. In the year 2000, when I was in the DC area, I found an expensive stylist who trained in Paris, New York, and had also styled at the Miss USA pageant back then. She was a virtuoso. I had just grown my hair to mid-back length and wanted it a bit shorter. She cut it to my shoulders, layered (with a razor) the bottom 2 inches to give it a swing, and changed my part from middle to side. What a difference! WOW. Alas, I moved on from DC and haven’t found a comparable stylist. I do know a lady who can cut my hair OK, but she’s $45+ now. I just think that’s too much. So, I learned how to cut my own bangs about a decade ago after one too many bad bang cuts. I don’t have a forehead; I have a fivehead. So, I need bangs. I tried to go back to the between-chin-and-shoulder length style, but again I just had too hard of a time finding a good quality, non-extortionate hair stylist. So, I am growing my hair out and have been learning how to braid.

    I was inspired about braiding after watching the Wonder Woman movie where all these bad-a$$ women had their hair in braids, no matter their age. I am fit, they like are, so I can pull it off.

    The second reason I decided to grow my hair out is that it dawned on me – it took me long enough – that men really like long hair. If I want to seriously start looking for a life partner, then why not give a guy what he wants to a reasonable extent?

    The third reason I am growing my hair out is that it’s naturally wavy (not naturally straight or naturally curly). So, unless I have a virtuoso stylist, most cuts make my hair look unruly unless I wash and blow it dry every single day. I either have to layer it all and let it loose or – like I’m doing now – grow it out and braid it. I think it looks more professional in a work setting to pull it back in a low ponytail with a nice clip/barrette or braid it or put it in an updo.

    To the man who commented that long hair down and loose can make older women look like old hags, I have to agree. That’s the one reason I didn’t grow my hair out. My personal opinion (again personal) is that I will only wear my hair down and loose if I’m going out on a date, with a significant other, or at home. I personally can’t stand hair in my face, and it’s distracting to watch other women continually push their hair out of their faces (or worse yet play with it). A former real estate agent of mine had long hair and she was older. If she wore it in a half-up, half-down style she looks pretty, but if she wore it all down, hanging loose, she looked 10 years older. As we age, our faces, noses, and even earlobes get longer, and so long hair loose on older women can, for some, drag their look down. Especially if it is loose and unkempt.

    The reason I think that older women in the past – or present – haven’t kept long hair is that it is very hard to keep long hair and dye it. As we age, our hair becomes dryer, anyway. With coloring, I would think it would break off. I think most women choose to keep the color not the length.

    Also, I grew up in a home where my mom had rather short hair, and she didn’t know what conditioner was. She was a Missouri farm girl in the 40s. They didn’t have all the products we do now.

    So, I’m growing my hair out and learning to be good at braiding. I think my long hair, put back at work, looks more professional than my naturally curly (and unfortunately unkempt looking) chin-to-shoulder length hair. I’m fortunate that I’ve never had to color it. The good news? My grooming expenses are lower, except that I buy much better conditioner now, and I’ve started to be noticed by even younger men who feel the need to chit-chat with me when they walk by.

    Oh, and last, while I’m on this earth, I thought I might do some good with my hair. When it hopefully grows really long, I’ll cut 15″ off, to about shoulder length, and perhaps donate it to girls with cancer who have strawberry blond hair! Do what you want with your hair. Just realize there’s a money motive from the advice-giving stylists and there are definite overall opinions from most men on hair length.

  16. I believe a lot of the discussion about what older women are supposed to do stems from the fact we are fed a constant diet of young women…long hair… the full faces of trendy makeup as the “norm” by the media and fashion world. Women aren’t allowed to deviate from that look and are shamed when they no longer fit that esthetic. We don’t tell older men not to unbutton their shirts, wear a beard, or cover up and it’s because older men aren’t fed a constant diet of images that only show men in the 15 to 25 age range. They are allowed to be visible when they age. We should put constant pressure on advertising to stop the bias and run campaigns that reflect all society and not just youth.

    1. Oh yes!!! What do you have said is exactly what is going on. Women are simply not “allowed” to age.

  17. I turn 70 in two weeks and have had my hair long since I was 19. I love my long hair. It is healthy and thick and I wash it about once a week or every 5 days. This way it does not dry out. I have it coloured light brown with blonde highlights to help with the grey control. I colour it myself for root touch-up about every 5 weeks and then professionally cut (trim) and colour about every 3 months. I get compliments almost every day on my hair and I love long hair. Always have and always will.

  18. I have long hair, over 60. No plastics or dye jobs. I’m in great shape and live a healthy lifestyle. I’m in a professional career. I cannot help it if some ugly horn dog with an enlarged liver showing through his shirt was cool by what he saw from behind me. I’m not trying to be sexy nor do I need a date. But, I’ve had an occasional jerk make a face when he’s smiling goofy-ass comes barreling down on me and discovers a face over the age of 30! Yes, I am older, I am tired, I want to retire, I don’t dress sexy, but I don’t wear sneakers unless I’m at the gym. I’m not hitting the clubs, I don’t care about the opinion of someone who is sexually frustrated. Frank, I’m talking to you… Hear me, boy, nobody cares why you don’t like our long hair. I’m certain that you are no prize, yourself!!

  19. Older women retain their youthfulness WITH long hair, 90% of the time. Short cuts often rob women of sensuality.

  20. Thank you for your comments, as an over 50 with long hair, I like your article which is nonjudgemental and Straight to the point’

  21. Amazing how much emotion has been released about hair! I’ve got to jump in, people whose roots show, or who do their own hair color regardless of style look sad to me. go with your natural color and hair type, like french women, keep it simple.

  22. At 71 love my long hair. About 2 ” below my shoulders. Colored light golden brown. Wear it up or down, half up half down, braided, twisted, buns, pony, Blow dry, air dry, rollers, irons, round brushes, hats, headbands, scarfs. Hair jewelry. Takes me 10 minutes at most to do my hair.
    It’s versatile, sexy, chic, and sophisticated depending on my mood and fashion.
    Have had short hair but it’s not who I am .was very high maintenance and for me required more makeup. Also had more bad hair days than good hair days. It also dated me.
    I like change and short hair is just not versatile enough for my style.
    It’s not for everyone but neither is short hair.

    1. Welcome to the club, Leslie! I’m in your age range, I have long, very naturally curly reddish hair that I’m adamant about keeping long. I get my hair color spruced up, shampooed, conditioned, and trimmed every six months by a great hairstylist. I, too, like to wear my hair in various ways: a single side pigtail, two pigtails, down, low or high ponytails that are either braided or not. I, too, have had short hair, have hated it, and couldn’t wait for it to grow long. It’s to each their own.

  23. After a certain point, it looks ridiculous. I see more and more older women with teenage hairstyles, and all it does is accentuate how old you are and the fact that you don’t know how to age gracefully. I’m an older woman, by the way. I’ve been walking behind women before who were fit and slim and had long hair and teenage-style clothes, and then they turned around, and it was truly creepy/scary to see a 50 or 60-year-old with wrinkles. Had these women dressed with more actual style and had a flattering hairstyle, they would have looked fine. That’s what they don’t realize.

    1. Maybe you are right, but this is still pretty mean. Lots of people look less than perfect. but If they feel good, just let them be. I am sure it could always be worse.

    2. Wow, that kind of judgemental attitude is exactly what all women fight against. It is hard enough to age “gracefully” in a patriarchal society without being torn down by another woman. And who the hell are YOU to determine that aging “gracefully” does not include long hair. And just for your information, as I toss my waist-length hair over my 65-year-old shoulders, I will purr to you…” men love it”. So…watch my 65-year-old bottom in tight jeans with hair swinging gloriously..walk right by you. Namaste

        1. No. Long hair brings your face down. Even young girls look stupid with long scraggly hair. They never seem to get it trimmed. Everyone looks the same. Ugly

    3. I fail to see how short hair makes someone look younger. Personally, I think that it’s cultural. In other cultures, women don’t cut their hair. Older women keep long hair and often wear it in a braid or bun but also just down sometimes. I agree that it can go too far. Probably to the waist is too much for most older women. It also depends on your hair type and the condition of your hair. I think most women could wear it well in the right style at least shoulder length up to a few inches longer. One thing is for certain, men 9 times out of ten or more prefer long hair whatever the age. I also think that hairdressers push for shorter hair and for dying hair because they make more money. The shorter it is the more often it needs cut as it quickly loses its shape. The more that is done to it, razoring, coloring etc the better it is for them.

    4. I am 55 and have very long, light brown hair which I color to my natural shade with a gentle dye. Most people cannot believe I dye my hair. I treat it with a mask of jojoba or coconut oil every week. I hike, bike, and do yoga. My clothing is stylish, but not sex kittenish. And note here, sweetheart, when I turn around, you will not see wrinkles on my face. Other than a few fine lines around my eyes, I do not have any.

  24. I’m 42. I have waist-length curly hair and I’m going for knee. I don’t fit in with current fashion. Heck, I don’t fit in with the fashion of *this century*. Some days it’s like I stepped out of Downton Abbey. My point: I don’t give a rip what anyone thinks of my getups, obviously. It’s a lot of fun, though, and it will be more fun with 3 1/5 feet of hair instead of 2!

    1. I’m with you! My hair, my body, my soul……I don’t tell anyone what to wear or how to dress….that is up to the individual. I dress for me and no one else…….

  25. Hi, I just sent you some photos. I am 61 with silver streaked waist length hair, light brown,a bit curly hair [light brown mainly in back] which is layered with long bangs and a v cut, which my talented hubby cut. I no longer go to salons as they try very hard each time to convince me to dye and go back short..It looks more silver in some lights than others.

    A lot of my white is underneath and shows more when I wear it up..I love it long , and silver streaked and will never go back to dyed and short,no matter what age I am.Nothing prettier than a silver streaked french braid with hoop earrings or a shiny french low chignon.

    Long hair in older women can be truly elegant. It’s not for everyone but I find all the talk about you cannot wear long hair after you are past a certain age or that long hair is straggly or boring or not stylish to be so,so,so wrong and it annoys me no end..I belong to several long hair forums and you’d be shocked how lovely long hair looks on many of the older members [their pics]and some are older than me..I wash my hair daily,condition it ,then dry with a floor fan [no heat or damage ] leaves my hands free and my hair is dry in 15 minutes. Much faster and healthier than a hot blowdryer.

    It is truly wash n wear hair. Nothing easier and my updos all take maybe 2 minutes to do.My hair costs nothing since I no longer go to salons,except now I like to buy unique hair toys to put it up with in different styles.[Ficcare clips, fancy wood hair forks,African butterfly clips Thanks, Dulcy

    1. Interesting…I’m here because I’m At the “cut or grow” stage and have been considering a short wash and wear cut! I suppose if I could go longer it might be washed and worn too…just without showing my natural wave so much. The trouble with shorts is that you’re at the mercy of a hairdresser — and they don’t all know how to work with natural texture.

      1. I’m 53 and have been wearing my hair short for about 15 years. I tried to grow it out, but honestly, I can’t stand the upkeep of long hair. I’m more of a “wash and go” gal. I have small features and long hair seems to drag me down. Plus, here in Florida, it is so hot all the time, I just can’t stand the hair on my neck or hanging in my face. Some people say I’m “too old” for a pixie, but you know what? I don’t care. Do what you want. Just make sure your style looks good on you! Long, thin, scraggly hair isn’t attractive to anyone – no matter the age.

  26. I think that the religions and cultures in which women cover their hair have it right. I wish that all women covered their hair in the USA. That way my hair would simply be my own personal business rather than something that everybody else made judgments about whether it looked good or not. Oh well, what can you do?! From the moment a female is born until the moment that female dies, she is going to be looked up and down, and scrutinized from head to toe. I’m glad that my spiritual path is the most important thing in my life, and that when I die I am never going to reincarnate in this world again.

  27. I’m in my early 50s. For the past 20 years, I have worn my hair in the classic “bob” style. Sometimes angled, sometimes with bangs …. but a “bob” none-the-less. For the past couple of years, I have let my hair grow to the middle of my back and just for fun, I intend to let it keep growing. I keep it trimmed and cover up grays from my auburn color.

    I don’t think “age” should dictate how you wear your hair. As long as it suits your face and you keep your hair maintained, there is nothing wrong with wearing it long. I do agree that some women look like old hippies that got lost in a time warp on their way home from Woodstock … but there are styles for longer hair that are mature and look great on older women.

    I usually wear my hair “down” at home or at casual events. Sides pulled back in a low clip keep you from looking “kiddish.”

    At work or in a professional setting, I’ll pull it up into a twist or roll. I’ve also adapted a “fake bob” look ( a la “Boardwalk Empire” style ) where I divide my hair into sections, twist it loosely and pin it into place so it looks like a shorter “do”, but isn’t.

    There are many ways for “women of a certain age” to wear long hair so that it’s pretty, appropriate and yes, sexy. We all don’t have to be herded into the short-hair category.

  28. As a male, I have been a long hair lover all my life and an a quite mature male now. I think it is the most feminine thing a woman can have that is for all to see. My favorite style is LONG and no bangs. I’m sure to a point that stems from a girl friend early in my life who had very long hair and love it to fall about her head and create some mystique too. She also loved to drape and tease me with it.

    Ladies, I know that your hair is a pesonal thing………. but I’m one of the guys who loves it on you too. My ex (deceased) wife had long hair and I used to help her care for it. If you like it long, go for it………….. there are a lot of guys who agree with you. ;)

  29. Great advice Athena. It is so true. I YOU like your long hair, you will attract someone who also appreciates your look. My spouse and I often disagree about who looks good on the street and who looks hideous. I see someone unique, earthy, authentic and interesting and I’m drawn to them. He is drawn to the opposite. So, there are always people who will appreciate and be drawn to what you choose for yourself.

  30. Women have for too long cared about what “men” think about their look. If a woman wants her hair long, wear it! If a woman believes her hair style looks good, keep it and stop caring about what people like Frank think.

    You probably don’t want someone with such a nasty opinion as Frank anyway.

  31. I’m a guy, and I would like to add to the discussion. I think older women with long hair look sorta HAGGY…I don’t think it’s sexy. Usually the hair is sort of dull looking, and it looks gross. Makes them look older, actually. Like a witch or a homeless person. Unkempt and messy and just sorta…pathetic, like they’re trying too hard to be sexy. Personally, I just think it usually looks sort of nasty.

      1. Frank, HAGGY is exactly the look I am aiming for, and that you think it is ‘gross’ is another bonus. Because I NEVER want to be thought sexy by people like you. Or by anyone, really. I just want to wear my hair how I want to. ‘Nasty’ sounds good right now.

        1. Frank, thanks for your honesty. Your comment confirms what I suspect is true about my own hair. This is not to say that all women with longer hair look like hags, but personally, I have to take my own inventory and this comment actually helped me get clarity.

          A lot of men are in the “long at all costs” camp, whether their hair is in good shape or not…I actually think it is refreshing to hear your point of view.

    1. I assure you Frand, I’ve been called many things in my life, but NEVER sexy. I guess I have a problem with the judgement. I don’t understand why anyone has the right to judge unless you walk in their shoes. No one needs a reason to grow their hair other than, it makes them happy. So why would you have such an unflattering judgement of them….when they aren’t hurting anyone and IT JUST MAKES THEM HAPPY!. Goodness knows, we sure need more happy people in this world. But maybe that’s the ticket, eh? Unhappy people are quick to pass judgement on others…because they are so unhappy themselves. What a sad way to travel this wonderful, beautiful and yes, sometimes stressful path in life. A lady that I visit in the nursing home has very fine, thin hair halfway down her back. But oh my, she LOVES her hair. Her face absolutely beams when I tell her how beautiful her hair is. And isn’t THAT what life is all about. Putting a smile on someone’s face. Just think of how your comment, Frank, did anything but put a smile on “older” women who have long hair’s faces. Wow, can’t see how that would better your day. So…I will leave you to your strong judgement attitude, I will put on some music, comb my beautiful waist length hair (at 65) and go out and smile at people. Tell someone how beautiful their skin is….or tell someone how wonderful they look in that hat. Watch them have a spring in their step just because someone…took the time to build them up and not tear them down. NOW THAT’S HOW I WANT TO LIVE MY LIFE! Grow on Goddesses….grow on!

    2. My grandfather now passed away used to talk about how he loved to watch his grandmother who was a Cherokee Indian brush out her long black hair and how pretty it was. Since she was older I’m sure she must have had some gray at least I know they didn’t have money and I’m sure she didn’t die it. There are way more men who disagree with you. You are probably one of those guys who just think older women are baggy period and are only interested in children half your age.

    3. To be honest, Frank, as a woman in her late 60s, who has opted to keep her long, curly reddish hair long, I could not care less what you say or think. How people choose to wear their hair is nobody’s business but their own.

    4. Well, I bet I could find a few things wrong with you Frank but you know what I won’t. Because I don’t care how you dress, your hair, its length that’s all up to the individuals. Thank goodness it is or we would all be walking around looking the same. Live and let live Frank. Women celebrate your life the way you choose.

  32. As a woman in her early 60’s, I still have long, very naturally curly hair, and intend to keep my hair long forever, if one gets the drift. It’s nobody’s business how a woman of any age wears her hair. I can braid my hair, wear it down, or do all kinds of things with it, and one never has that freedom with short hair, imo. Btw, I’ve had short hair several times during my life, hated it, and couldn’t wait for it to grow back.

    As for people who don’t like long curly hair…too bad for them.

    1. Hi Deborah, Here is a photo of me with my long hair. I say. Good for you with long hair in your 60’s. I am going to be 62 next month and I have wonderful long hair also. I can wear it naturally wavy or blow dry it straighter and I wear bangs. I’ve long ago let my color grow out and it is white and I love it. Many people are surprised at my age and they think I’m a blonde. I think a woman’s hair is her pride and she’s to do what she wants to with it. I love to braid it or even in a pony tail. It’s what I like and I don’t look like a hag.

      1. Wow Nancy! … You have what is possibly the most beautiful, healthy-looking, and attractive LONG hair I’ve seen in quite some time! I love the natural color also. Simply gorgeous! You are a beautiful woman! Thanks for sharing your photo!

        … BTW – I’m a man (your age) who loves long hair and … I want to marry you! ;-)


  33. Most older women look better with medium-length hair, I think. Medium length (thicker) hair is short enough to visually “pull the face up”- yet not so short that it’s masculine looking.

    Most older women (any woman over 35, really) look silly with super super long hair. they look desperate, like they’re trying to be 18, and the hair doesn’t go with the face – or with the lifestyle of a woman this age, usually.

    Also, any woman with a lONG face – even if they ARE young, looks better without super long hair. The super long hair optically makes the face look longer. Also, any woman with thin straight hair usually does not look good with it long – ESPECIALLY if she is older AND has a longer face (double whammy)!

    The celebrities over 40 with super long curly shiny hair? Psssaw…people, realize..its all FAKE hair with them…that long hair is NOT real, you can tell by the “banana curl” look of it at the ends…maybe instead of extensions to lengthen their hair at these ages, they should instead wear extensions that just THICKEN the hair they have, at a slightly shorter length.


        1. Wow. Who died and left you in charge??! I didn’t get that memo.

          How does it possibly matter to YOU how someone else wears her hair?? That’s ridiculous.

    1. Yes to all of ^^ this. After a certain age, long hair only serves to accentuate the “maturity” of the face skin, resulting in a fatigued/worn look. It is visually aging, period. Just like short hair makes a young person look older and an old person looks younger, long hair has a similar aging effect (only in reverse). And sure, you can go ahead and wear your hair however you want and be happy with it, and that’s great, but don’t kid yourself that you are any kind of an exception to the rule, or believe that you are escaping the “trying too hard to cling to youth” moniker. Very long hair on women over 50 is not flattering, no matter who you are (including Demi Moore or Courteney Cox).

    2. My husband disagrees with you. And who says that long hair fits with young and short hair looks good on older women? Who came up with that rule? I’ve been really looking and I don’t see it. Anyone who thinks that short hair makes them look young, makes their wrinkles disappear, or be less noticeable is deluding themself.
      In response to Frank, unhealthy hair isn’t going to look good no matter what length. The thing to do is to work on nutrition and hair care to get it healthy and then it will look good whatever the length. A number of nutrient deficiencies can negatively impact hair quality. A major one is an iron and lack of it can cause hair and nails to break and look dull.

    3. Correct, I don’t know how/why most people don’t ever think about the fact that face shape and features have a lot to do with what hair length/style will look best on them. I mean, it makes logical sense. We all have different head/face shapes and features so different looks will be more or less flattering on different people. Instead, most people seem to be in the “all women look better with long hair” camp. Also, body type and height, very overweight and/or very short people will generally not look great with long hair. I’m 5′ tall so I kind of look like a troll with it’s hair combed down with very long hair. LOL

  34. This is a stupid article, there are no perceptive insights about hair styles, just statements of the obvious. And none of the women named are old, 40 is a totally appropriate age to wear long hair at, the countless photographs they’ve plastered affirm that its dominant style of the American media for women of all ages, unless perhaps they are very elderly. These women are not even realistic examples of their age, the geisha-like pound of make up, reconstructive surgery, lighting specialist and airbrushing, body building, dyes and highlights, implants and collagen, possibly hair transplants that leave these celebrities as passable for women in their twenties do not create a reasonable demonstration.

    1. I agree with everything, except for the idea that the “work” the celebrities had done as making them passable for women in their twenties. I can usually tell more of less what age anyone is, even with plastic surgery. Although plastic surgery usually does make them look “better”, they simply look like a “better” 50 or 60-year-old (or whatever age they are), but not younger. It’s a pet peeve of mine when all you see is pictures of these “great-looking women over 50 with long hair” that have all had plastic surgery. I would say it’s the plastic surgery more so than the hair that looks “great”. But what do I know? LOL

  35. Long hair can look VERY SEXY on an older woman. It depends on various factors whether it works well, but my advice to mature women is don’t short change yourself on the fear that it’s no appropriate.

    To my eyes, the sexiest women on Earth, the very image of feminine beauty, are 40+ and 50+ women with beautiful long hair. I love all types of women, younger and older, but a 40+ woman with long beautiful hair can just melt me like nothing else.

  36. I have just turned 42 a couple of months ago and I have got longish (planning on growing it really long) dark auburn hair. I dye it with henna, wash it with the noo-poo method, eat healthy and my hair has never looked better than it does now…shiny, silky soft and full of volume. According to some men and women I should have short hair by now, but why destroy something which is perfect???? I was forced to cut my hair a few years ago after a bleaching disaster, now I do not want to sound like everbodies mom now…but what ever you do do not bleach your hair, it kills it litterally and if you absolutly must bleach it, go to a salon never ever do it yourself at home!

    But never the less, I hated my short hair so much that I began using extentions, fake ones never the less due to my sense of morality (extentions made from human hair are of hair from Indian and Pakistani women in jail who have been forced cut) and it took me 4 years to get to the length that I have now. So I will be damned if I ever let myself be pressured to cut it short! Today I have layers in my hair but no bangs, I know that many say that older women look good with bangs, but bangs have never ever suited me…not when I was a child, teenager, young adult or now. I just wish that people would stop such as in this case, telling older women how to wear their hair. I think it is down right rude to do so, to be honest! If you hate long hair or you are convinced that you are told old to have long hair, then do not have long hair, but do not tell everybody else what to do!

    My theory about when all this crazyness about older women and long hair is that during the second world war in Europe there was no such thing as shampoo and conditioners and the good old baking powder and vinegar wash was either forgotten or considered outdated. Instead women used to wash their hair with harsh soaps and house hold cleaners and used to bleach their hair with house hold bleach according to my grand mother, so no wonder their hair looked a mess after years of that treatment. After the war came the perms and the dyes which were so harsh back then that it did not do wonders for their hair either. Best thing back then was to cut it short and perm it for more volume resulting in the very unflattering “little old lady” hairstyle. And facial skin care…well, just once in a while when their skin was really dry. However times have changed now, at 50 you do not need to look like your grand mother did at that age! Times have changed, some people might not like it, but do not let them control you!

    Eat healthy, stop using harsh chemical products on your hair and cut those split ends if you have any and you can keep your hair as long as you want to, no matter how old your are!

    As for the noo-poo method…well, just Google it! :)

    And as a final note: No, henna does not cause cancer. The only way that henna can cause cancer is if you eat it or if it contains PDD, which real natural henna never does!

    Keep your tresses, ladies…your are after all not your grand mother.

  37. Deborah, if you would care for a man’s opinion, I am a long hair lover on a woman and a mature male.

    I am a ‘mature male” and sure some will not agree with this opinion, but personally i think that very long hair, no bangs is the most sensual feminine thing a woman can have. For a male who likes it in today’s world is hard to find a woman who feels the same.

    The biggest complaint that over the years I have heard from my male friends is their S/O’s had it long to attract them, then once they were married, not long after they had it whacked off…… for a “reason” of somekind. They usually were not asked nor protested after the fact…… but secretly wished it has not happened too. Also many of the women after they did it, wished they had not.

  38. Hi Deborah,
    I am almost 68 and my hair is past my waist. I trim it every 3 months and get lots of compliments. They tell me I look good and young for my age. I keep the gray out of site, very clean and shiny and you should wear your hair the way it makes you happy.

  39. Hi, I agree with the article, It’s not so much the age it’s if the cut flatters your face. I’m 47 and got my hair cut short to grow out my natural gray. I’ve been growing it out since and am now wearing a short asymmetrical bob that I’m very happy with. I don’t feel that I look good with hair longer than shoulder length. It just seems to make my face look long and more haggard.

    One thing I think helps a lot in women who wear long hair is layers that soften the edge around the face. Most of the women with long hair my age that look pretty and fashionable have some layers.

    1. Hi Michele,
      Well put!!! I agree with you!! Long hair can really drag a face down on some women especially if they do not have layers put in. Of course there are always exceptions…as we have shown here. My girlfriend looks best in long hair but she does keep it layered. One good way to judge is to look at a photograph of yourself and see if you think your long hair is flattering. Photos show us things we can’t always see in the mirror.

  40. I am 52 years old. I have hair down to the middle of my back. I keep it colored and in good condition. I do like some women in short hair, Helen Mirren, Sharon Stone, Cate Blanchate. As you can see, all of these women are blonds. I think short hairstyles look good on blonds but not brunettes.
    Brunetts tend to look like they have helmet hair.
    I have tried short cuts, but find it takes longer to style for me. Now I am keeping my long hair. I am Native American and I think this is just more natural.

    1. I’m 63 and have long hair Want to grow it out as I already have a heredity silver streak in front What do you suggest? Hair is fine and gets frizzy with chemical interventions

  41. Vicki, what a gorgeous post. I love the way you write. So, not only are you gorgeous, with long beautiful hair, but you’ve got talent, too. (I can relate LOL)

  42. Thanks to all of you who want to just be yourselves and wear your hair any way you want to. It is helping me stop trying to be what I am not and just be myself. I’m keeping the long hair. :)

  43. I’m 62, and my hair hangs down over my shoulders by several inches and I wear bangs. I dye my hair regularly, but I try to avoid blow drying it. My hair is thick, but its also fine so I need to be careful with it in order to keep it healthy. I like the convenience of the length because I can curl it and wear it down, or I can put it up in a ponytail and pull it through the back of a baseball cap. I don’t care if people think my hairstyle is too young for me. I don’t feel old, and I certainly don’t act it. Most importantly, I am very comfortable with myself. And the last three men in my life have ranged from 2 years to 22 years YOUNGER than I am. So that tells me I must be doing something right!

  44. I just had my hair cut really short (like a man’s). I got dozens of compliments, but I HATE it. It’s is growing really quickly. I’ll be 60 next year and want to grow my hair and not cut it until my 60th birthday. I tend to do what others dictate for me. I am obsessed with my hair and how it looks. It’s completely gray but I color it myself all the time.

    1. Hi Dorofee,
      I’m sure you look great with your short hair but its so much fun to try different things! Enjoy your journey into long hair, too! Good luck!

    1. Hi Lynda,
      Yes that’s my pet peeve too. You always get these token 40+ women in ads with grey hair. Nothing wrong with gray hair, but it’s only one segment of the mature women population out there! Let’s get real and oust that stereotype once and for all.

  45. Sorry, but I have to say that I find that long hair on older women just doesn’t seem very chic. By long hair, I mean beyond shoulder length. Most of the women I know wearing hair like this couldn’t care less about style or fashion. They wear baggy jeans, sneakers, no make up. They don’t color their hair. They appear not to care about themselves. The term “hag”-like comes to mind. I am not saying that anything is inherently wrong with long hair on older women, it’s just that I have very rarely seen it carried off in a stylish way. On the other hand, I have seen lots of older women with short, chic cuts that turn my head. Not all short cuts look good, obviously. A woman has to research a style and stylist that really works for her. But when she does, the results are far superior than just letting unshaped hair hang down one’s back with out regard for face structure, etc. It really doesn’t add as much as some women might think.

    1. ‘Most of the women I know wearing hair like this couldn’t care less about style or fashion’ – you say this like it’s a bad thing! Not everyone is superficial, Lucy. I wonder if you ever look past another woman’s appearance?

  46. I have to say that I have never seen an older woman who looks good with long hair. I know…I know they all believe they look 10-15 years younger than they actually are to begin with. Most older women wearing long hair also seem to wear tight jeans, sweatshirts and sneakers. This is by far the worse fashion offense I can think of.

    1. Frank, you would hate me. hahaha That’s ok cuz you sound like my 92 year old grandfather who is always telling me I should “tie that hair back”. Gotta laugh because clearly your type is not my type. But isn’t that what life’s all about? I don’t find men in suits, at all attractive. Give me a construction worker anyday. Different strokes for different folks. Which is cool cuz there’s someone for everyone. But why judge others’ ideas of what’s attractive? Just because it’s not for you doesn’t mean it’s not .k. And btw, this 53 year old loves her skinny jeans which work better on skinny legs than old lady baggy ones. Plus they fit really nicely into boots. When I’m not wearing my sneakers or flip flops. And you can never ever have too many sweatshirts!

      1. Go Tami! I love your post. I am 48 and have long hair. I also wear skinnies and sneakers, so arrest me!! I wear what I like when I like thank you.

        1. You go, girl! I don’t think anyone should live by what others think is ok or not. Live your life with what makes you happy. There will always be critics but a confident person does not judge. Be happy in your own skin.

    2. I’m a woman and I agree with you. I keep seeing all these pictures of older women who supposedly look great with long hair – first of all, almost all of them are celebrities who’ve had tons of plastic surgery and Botox. Take a look at real women who have not had these procedures done and see what you think, LOL. Not the same thing. And even though some celebs and people w/ plastic surgery over 50 can look decent with longer hair, they ALL look better with shoulder-length or slightly shorter hair.

  47. Deborah Boland says:
    October 10, 2010 at 8:31 am

    Sure people are telling you that your hair is pretty is probably is. What is your purpose to growing it to your tush? Just curious?

    why not? and why do i have to justify how long i grow my hair to anybody?? like why would you want to look like a lesbian with short hair…just curious?

  48. I am 53 with hair six inches past my waist. It has not been dyed, bleached, streaked, permed, or anything else. It is a natural medium brown with red highlights, and a few “rogue” silver hairs which are brighter and more noticable than grey hair, and I don’t intend to dye my hair ever. If it goes completely silver which I doubt it will remain natural…along with my freckles.
    I get compliments all the time and sometimes people want to touch my hair men included.
    I have had some people say I should cut my hair, but why? It is easier to look after, no fuss styling, just blow it dry, and even at that it has no split ends….my secret I DON’T BRUSH OR COMB MY HAIR except when I condition it to detangle it when I am in the tub.
    I think since the “fashion” industry is run by men who sleep with men who the hell are they to tell me what looks good on a woman anyways……especially since they prefer men?
    I’m not cow towing to society’s idea of how long my hair should be.
    Strangely enough it is women who tell me I should cut my hair, men just want to play with it.
    I might mention that since I have never been a sun worshipper I look 10 years younger than my true age and my hair adds to that “image” for a lack of a better word.

  49. I’m 58 this year and my hair is mbl,and I’m planning on waist length. I’ve given up arguing with my sisters when they tell me I looked better with short hair in my twenties. Hey, Deb I’m older now and I’ll wear my hair as long as I please. My husband and son love it long and they are all that matter. As far as my hair length goes I will be growing it until I die and they can plait it and stuff it in the coffin with me.

  50. Women should wear their hair the way they want. I used to be a slave to the fashion magazines that told you what to wear when you were a certain age and what hair style you should wear. Forget it. My hair is a couple of inches above my shoulders. It is perfect for me because I can wear it in a short ponytail or down. I went to a few hairstylists who were determined to have me in short bobs or stupid mullet styles–finally found one who cuts it so I don’t have to do anything except leave it loose and wavy. I spend the most money on color–base and lowlights and highlights–I am gray and staying dark blonde. Forget magazine articles that dictate what you should and should not do.

  51. I am 52 and have long auburn hair. I have stalked every website available trying to justify my hair at my age after my mother tried to hard to make me cut it into a short bob with bangs saying long hair is not a style for a middle aged woman. I thank all the ladies on this site for making me feel better about my decision to keep my long healthy hair for as long as I can.

    1. Hi Cheryl,
      I agree that age is just a number and that it is not a reason to cut your hair. Many women look best in long hair and so as you mentioned that yours is healthy then go for it!

  52. What bothers me is that there are still societal assumptions dictating how women “should” look. Why are we so hung up on looks? In Europe, I’ve seen overweight women in their sixties wearing two piece bathing suits. I don’t have the courage, but I say, more power to them. For those who say they don’t want to see that, hey, don’t look!

    THere is so much ugliness in this world that we can work to eradicate….poverty, cruelty, pollution…that a few jiggly tummies or frizzy gray heads are hardly worth concerning oneself over.

    I think that women should wear their hair however it best suits them and if that means long and gray, go for it. I remember approaching my mid 30s, becoming a mom and people starting to comment that I would have to cut my hair. Says who? I’m 47 now and long hair still suits me. It reaches the middle of my back….a good lenth for me as it’s versatile and manageable. I spend all of 5 minutes a day on styling. I don’t color yet, only have a few grays and my hair is full and healthy.

    I work in an office where a lot of the women are in their 60s and have the ubiquitous “older lady” hair do….sort of like a man’s hair style circa 1955. Sorry but that hair style doesn’t even look good on men! Helen Mirren has short hair but it’s swingy and feminine. There is no reason to de-sex women just because they’re over 40 or 50!

    Fwiw, I also hate the “rule” that says women should go lighter in hair color as they get older. A shade lighter than one’s natural color, ok, but what is with all the older women I see with bleached blonde hair? Blonde hair looks gorgeous on a woman with the coloring to pull it off, otherwise, women should wear their hair in a color that looks good on them. Throw away the rule book and look in the mirror. Like what you see? That’s all you need to know!

  53. I am 41 with waist length hair which I am growing to bum length. My hair is thick and wavy and very shinny, i often get complimented on how healthy it looks. I went short on a whim 5 years ago never again, i looked 10 years older and it felt like id lost my identity if people dont like my hair long thats there problem, i intend to keep my hair very long until i die…get used to it!

  54. I am 62 years old and I wear my graying hair loose and long. I trim it myself according to the Framer’s Almanac “best days to cut hair to increase growth”.
    My hair is now almost to my hips. I lost a few years of progress in growing my hair after I used hair coloring on it. Bad idea. Hair dye broke off my hair and dye is carcinogenic, so I stopped.

    Women at my job have given up on trying to convince me to cut off my hair. I love my long hair and plan to keep growing it as long as possible before I die.

  55. I’m 48 – have had long hair for 7 years already – (it was a promise I made 7 years ago) – I am in the stage where I feel I need a big change – how short should I go? My husband loves my hair – (and I have to say I do to:)..

  56. I’m African American and my hair has been very short and curly all my adult life. It simply doesn’t grow beyond my ears, and when it does it looks awful…all uneven and whatnot. I wish it did grow out long to at least should length, but alas. It’s been my cross to bear. I’ve had people mistake me for a guy (either that, or they knew I was female and was just being rude…not sure which). Women say all the time how nice I look in short hair, but I’m not looking to attract other women. I want to have man, someone who is willing to get married. Yet, they can’t seem to get past my short hair. So should I go the wig/weave route, and then how do I explain to the man that it’s not my real hair? I’ll be 50 next year and fact is I’m not getting younger. HELP! I don’t want to stay alone through my 50s.

    1. Hi Sabrina,
      It sounds like you are wanting to look more feminine and your hair is holding you up. You should definitely go the weave route rather than the wig. Many women of all cultures are getting weaves and extensions and so you should not feel bad about thinking that “it is not your real hair”. There is a price tag, but they can last for several months at a time.
      We hope you will go forward with this and let me know how you look and feel! Until then, if you wear makeup and some earnings,you will soften your look and should not get mistaken for anything but beautiful you! Good luck!

    2. That’s crazy and rude! I wear my hair super short :) And, no, you do not look like a man!
      Just a suggestion – get some cute, big earrings! That’s the one thing I love about my short hair – my cute earrings aren’t hidden.

      I do wear makeup (unless I’m going to the gym) – some eyeliner provides a pop of color and wakens up my eyes. When your hair is short – your face is “all out there” and not hidden by your hair, so a little makeup helps. Rock your style girl!

  57. I just turned 50 and have waist-length hair, I’d thought about cutting it shorter–maybe even wearing it “boy short” like I did in my twenties, but I find long hair is SO much easier, and I get compliments on my long hair and my natural “highlights” (gray streaks) all the time . . . I tell people, “Yeah, this is the highlight where my son fell off the porch, and this is the highlight from when I didn’t have a job, and this is . . .” It usually gets a laugh. Just last week I got the ultimate compliment from my fifteen year old son. He said, “Mom, thank you for not looking like every other mother. Why do moms get to a certain age and dye their hair, get identical short haircuts, and start wearing sports shirts in pastel colors? It would weird me out if you were a clone of every other mother!” It made my day to have my son even NOTICE what I look like, let alone thank me for being me. I’m happy to oblige him now by staying my crazy, age-honest, long-haired self!

    1. Hi Liz,
      It is so amazing how many different, confident women we have on our site! Thanks for sharing your heartfelt story! How wonderful that your son admires you for not succumbing to trends and dressing for your authentic self. We are not here to be the “fashion police” and all our suggestions, are just that…suggestions. So when we hear that you are doing your own thing, it makes us happy that you are so comfortable in expressing your beauty in the way that you do.
      Thanks for sharing, you sound like a beautiful Mom, inside and out!

  58. The short style tha I dislike on older women is that one that has a little fringe and is a little puffy on top but very short. It is usually worn by round women and they look very ugly. Sometimes they have horrible coloured blobs in it too making them look absolutely disgusting! I blame the hairdressers! They are supposed to make you look as good as you can be and they give women these ugly haircuts! with stupid colours….supposedly streaks but more like blobs on short hair. Then these women insist apon wearing trousers and shirts! They look like men. I am 55 and have long hair just past my shoulders. It is far easier to look after than short hair as I just brush it and go. Short hair has to be styled and forever cut to keep the shape of the style. Too fussy. Long hair can just be tied up and forgotten.

    1. Hi June,
      Yes, there seems to be a plethora of over 40 “man” cuts that women wear. They are going for ease, but end up looking pretty masculine, your right. However, unfortunately many women have thinning hair and a longer style will not work for them. It is very tricky getting a hair style that is “easy”, bottom line is that to look fabulous most women have to put a little effort into it, unless you are just naturally lucky to have think gorgeous hair!

  59. Long hair, short hair. Since when did age have anything to do with this? I thought it was your facial structure that determined your hair length as well as the health and thickness of your hair.

    I have to agree with Pepe, I’ve seem many older women for whom short hair does nothing but make them look like men. And I also despise the weird androgynous spikey short haired look a lot of mid-age women adopt or the short helmet hair look. Gag me! Very few women look good in these looks.

    Let your face determine your hair length and style, not your age. That said, women look better with hair that has life and movement long or short.

  60. Reading some of these posts have definitely made me feel better today! I am going through perimenopause (45yr.old) and am having a really rough time with accepting my age and getting older. My hair was about mid back length about 4 years ago and thats about when I first hit peri. so I began having these mixed up feelings where I couldn’t make up my mind on anything. So I went back and forth from my natural color hair (md. brwn) and blonde several times in a 2 week period and my hair ended up being total mush and had no other option but to cut it super short. I was just sick from doing such a thing! I couldn’t deal with the super short hair so I looked into getting extensions, great lengths. Bad idea. Wore those for about a year and when I got them out my hair was in bad shape and had to stay really short. Then after trying to deal with looking like that for a while I decided on a different kind of extension, hairloc, which was supposed to be a lot less damaging. Wore those for 2 years and got them out last August because I started to feel weird being my age with long hair. My hair was damaged on the ends so I had to go cut it all off again! Now, after many months later I decided to go get the newest extensions out called platinum seamless. People told me that I looked good with the short hair but I couldn’t see that. I actually felt like I looked older and frumpy. And on top of that I guess I felt that if I’m having to deal with extra weight coming from out of whack hormones I could at least have long hair to make myself feel a little better. I just feel more feminine and sexy with longer hair. So it is now mid back length. This is expensive but I don’t spend my money on anything else so why not. I do keep feeling like maybe people are looking at me and thinking “she’s obviously too old to have hair that long, she must be desperate to hang on to her youth”. I’m back and forth with these feelings right now. But like I said reading some of these posts have made me feel a little better about it.

    1. Hi Kimmie,
      It sounds like you are looking to your hair to feel pretty. This is a common theme for women all our lives! Why don’t you let your hair grow out naturally (yes, you can still color it) and then make sure to keep it cut in an updated style. Next, spend your money on a few new wonderful pieces of clothing that will make you look hip and chic all over. With a little grooming, hair, make up the right clothes and shoes, you will feel like a new woman! Long hair can still look good on certain women over 40, but it is best if it is combined with the entire updated image.
      Thanks for reading and sharing your story! Keep me posted.

  61. I will be 52 this year and my hair is almost to my waist. I have thick, wavy hair that I keep in long layers. I often wonder if I should cut my hair to ‘fit my age’, but I get compliments all the time such as “you have the most beautiful hair!” or “your hair is so thick and pretty!”. My husband loves my long hair and I’ve asked to him to tell me when this style starts to look too ‘young’ for me or when my hair begins to look stringy or damaged. He hasn’t said anything yet so I guess I’m good for now. It has been an issue I think about, but I agree with Vicki and the other women. If you can wear your hair long and it looks healthy with a good cut, then wear it as long as you can! I do feel sexy (for now) with my hair long and who knows… maybe no one will notice my wrinkles while admiring my hair! I can only hope! And by the way, I did cut my hair very short in the late 80’s (a cross between Pat Benatar and David Bowie) – made me look 10 years older!

  62. As a studying anthropologist, I find this an interesting cultural issue. I noticed that in South America, this is also starting to become an issue that women face. Long or short? Truth be told, from a woman’s point of view, I have heard that it is easier to deal with longer hair and others say short. From a man’s point of view, hair is just an accessory. However, there are men who go for longer hair on mature women, others who like short, and others who don’t care.

    A Brazilian friend’s mother told me this, (roughly translated and paraphrased) “as long as you feel sexy, that is all that matters”. But, I have seen some older women that went short and immediately became a woman who looks like a metro-sexual male (WWLLMM). That isn’t really sexy to guys, unless they dig guys and you can convert gay men. So, if you are doing this change for yourself, the sky is the limit. But, if it is for a special somebody, get their input. You don’t want to scare somebody away because they don’t like your cut.

  63. I disagree completely with what you said about Meryl Streep. She looks EXCELLENT with long hair – you just happened to post a bad picture of her with long hair, and an terrific picture of her with short hair! Hehe. Meryl is gorgeous and looks closer to 45 than the actual 60-the long hair suits her perfectly.

    1. I agree. Secondly, she’s wearing a wig in The Devil Wears Prada. Her real hair is much too thin to wear in that particular style without a team of stylists to give it as much lift and body as it has in that photo and the wig. If Meryl Streep actually had that haircut, it would NOT look like that photograph at all.

  64. Hi :)
    I am 47 next week :) – I started growing my hair when I was 24 – all my life my dear Mum had tried to ‘help’ my ‘problem’ very fine but lots of it dark brown hair – we permed it, bleached it, cut it very very short. It mattered to me, my hair and it wouldn’t ‘go right’ so I turned to hate it. I was also NIL on confidence, very thin, shy, and geeky – no hope of teenage love or admiration for the likes of me! One day Mum saw another “plain” girl who was drawing attention for her fabulous well kept natural very long hair. “Look at HER!” she cried, “you could be like that!” (all well-meant by an exasperated Mum who knew I hated being so “ugly” with my by then frazzled bleached, hacked to bits hair. I grew it when I was 22. It looked a mess for about 1 year then, after trimming regularly, plenty of care (never using a hairdryer, products or tongs, etc), plus cod liver oil tabs and head massages – I was blessed with traffic-stopping shoulder blade hair!. The compliments increased as it grew to my waist and for years I enjoyed actually being pretty and marveled at. I LOVED my hair. It seemed to go with my artistic, ‘romantic’ ways too and was true “me”.

    Last May my dear Mum died of Leukaemia. For some reason, trying to sweep the pain of this away I suppose, I went and had most of it cut off, into a high-maintenance modern bob-type cut. I came out, after he’d snipped it off to make me look “younger and trendier”, charged me the earth, covered it in filthy products and tong straightened it to death – it smelt burning! I cried but tried to live with it. It’s now starting to grey – I have spotted 8 white hairs. However – I don’t care – I’m growing it again! I have nice clips for the fringe to grow out with and I’m getting it trimmed to keep it in good condition hey! it was “me” to have long hair and I never want to have it hacked off into a standardized ‘shape’ for the hairdresser to follow his fashion trends!

    I can wear it up, halfway up, or down – it’s MY hair, I love it and I will keep it and look after it until I’m dead and gone! There is TOO much pressure put on society by greedy money-clawing ‘beauty’ advisors !!! Look at Jemima Khan, Jane Seymour, Demi Moore, and ME – living proof that the hair you really truly want – is the hair you should award yourself! Short hair can harden and age people much much more than long, clean, shiny, well-trimmed hair.
    Love, Vicki x

    1. Hi Vicki,
      What a hair adventure you have been on! You mention that your style is “romantic and artsy”, well long hair is certainly can be one way to achieve and be in harmony with that looks. Moreover, it sounds like you keep it healthy-looking, trimmed, and conditioned.
      The important thing here is that YOU are feeling good about your hair. I was just chatting with a woman (age 43) who just cut off her waist-long, gorgeous thick curly hair. She was beaming from ear to ear and said her long hair had been dragging her down for years and she wished she had cut it sooner. (it is now cut to her shoulders) She even said she was going back to get MORE cut off!
      So you both are happy and that is great! Getting your hair cut can be traumatic, but at least you tried something different. The good news is that hair always grows back!
      Thanks for sharing!

    2. I am 56. About a year ago, I cut my hip-length hair due to the stress of my father’s prolonged illness and subsequent death. My hair was thinning due to stress, and I just had to get rid of that hair, due to the temporary thinning, and for similar reasons to yours, Vicki. I cut it to a nape-length bob, and then let it grow. I can’t remember being so miserable when looking in the mirror. At every new bob length, I just hated it, Also, in order for it to look good, it just took too much maintenance. And it’s just not me.

      My hair is just past my collarbone now and is starting to look long, and suddenly, I’m receiving compliments from everyone that I know. I take good care of my hair, and I don’t have a split end on my head. And I do color my hair, but I avoid any damage by using coconut oil before a coloring.

      I’m looking forward to it being back to at least hip length. Long hair is so easy to care for, and there are so many fabulous ways to wear it up, with my face-framing layers. I don’t care what anyone says; having long hair is just me. That’s who I am. No one can tell me otherwise.

  65. Dear Jane,
    We hear you loud and clear. You say you are “feeling old and you think your hair is letting (you) down”…

    However, it can be disheartening when a “friend” says you need a makeover. That kind of “advice” is never welcomed when not asked for.

    But to address your first comment…we hope we can be of some inspiration to you.

    We have seen first hand over and over, that those who have gone out and updated themselves, have had such wonderful results. We get countless letters from women who have felt stuck and then tried a sip or two of our and tried our “Tweak Your Chic” approach to dressing. At this age, it’s not about a major makeover, it’s about just a little tweak here and there.

    You might want to start with baby steps and see how you feel. If you decide that you are happy the way you are, then that’s great too.

    Good luck and let us know what you’re up to, and if you have any other questions!

  66. I am 44. Today I am feeling old and I think my hair is letting me down. But I think people have lost their manners. I have been having a rough time in my personal life and instead of friends listening to me (the way I have listened to their hundreds of ‘issues’), I am listening again to them. This week a ‘friend’ told me I need a ‘makeover’, I need to dress better (this is in the same week where a stranger in a cafe told me that she was admiring my style and when I thanked her she said ‘only the French know how to put together an outfit like that’), and that I need close fitted clothes and not all these shapeless outfits(can’t think of one since I am a ‘waist is best’ gal). She bases this on watching those makeover programs. The makeover will commence with a change of friends.

    1. Usually when people are ultra-focused on your appearance it is because you’re attractive. They wouldn’t even pay any attention if you weren’t, you would be invisible to them. I know that because I’m one of those people who has attractive and non-attractive days depending on how I wear my hair and makeup, what the weather does to my hair, etc. On my good days, it’s all eyes on me everywhere I go, and on my bad days I’m invisible (sometimes that’s refreshing, though, LOL). Whenever I’ve had people try to tell me how I’d look “better”, I take a look at them and notice that they are never anyone I would ever want to look like. (I mean really, take a look at the people who are telling you this stuff and ask yourself if they should be giving anyone else appearance advice LOL). My conclusion is that they might actually be able to look decent if they put 1/2 the focus on their own appearance as they are putting on others’.

  67. I am female and will shortly be turning 44. My hair is brunette and the length is down past my behind. I work in an office and twist my hair up all day, yeah I know, “that look”. I wear my hair down out of the office, often braided. I have had complete strangers in stores grab my braid. The other day I went to work on a Saturday but some others also ended up going to work and my hair caused everybody to stop and stare because nobody had any idea that my hair was that long. It took me slightly over 7 years to grow it that length from a very short haircut. I tried the short hair and short hair doesn’t suit me that well. I have had long hair all my life. I grow it for 8 years maybe and then cut it short and start again growing it out.

    I have come across a lot of females that don’t like hair that long. People with poor memories try and tell me that I look good in short hair, even though when I had short hair they constantly told me that it was needing to be combed, because of the natural curl, it stuck out every which way. I believe that I do look older when my hair is short. If nothing else, long hair makes a statement everywhere I go.


  68. Yes, you are so right! We agree that too short can be aging as well. Even women that look really good in short hair, many men, might disagree. However, never say never, we know some men that find a women’s neck very sexy and love short hair!

  69. Where do women get the idea that guy haircuts after they turn 40 look great on them? Not from many men, I can assure you!!

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