Fashion, petite fashion

25 Fashion Tips from Expert Stylists for Women 50+

25 Fashion Tips from Expert Stylists for Women 50+

While researching fashion trends for a post, I stumbled upon an article from Town & Country magazine directed at women over 50. The article consisted of 25 specific points with a quote from an expert celebrity stylist. And while I agreed with the majority of the 25 points, I did take issue with a few. I know I am not an expert celebrity stylist, but here is my take on each of the 25 Fashion Tips from Expert Stylists for Women 50+.

#1 Start With the Staples – fashion tips from expert stylists, women 50+

“I’m not into trends for people of any age, really. Everyone should be timeless, chic, and sophisticated. Some staples you should have are a white blazer, a cream blouse, and a black sweater; pieces that won’t fade away.” —Ashley Pruitt

Whatever your personal style, stocking your wardrobe with essential staples is a smart move! Essential staples are non-trendy capsule pieces that are timeless and classic.

I can’t say I agree with Fashion Tip #1 from expert stylist, Ashley or that “everyone” should be timeless, chic, and sophisticated. I do agree that every closet should have a few essential staples. However, what those staples should be depends on the personal style of the individual. If you live in the country your definition of “sophistication” may differ from someone who lives in the city; just saying! Really, lifestyle and authenticism have to be factored in, as well as a person’s preferences.

#2 Opt for Daintier Jewelry

“A lot of women tend to wear big statement necklaces, and I think that more often than not, it looks unsophisticated and cheap. It can make an outfit pop in the wrong way. It’s chicer to err on the side of minimalism.” —Andrew Gelwicks

Nope, I do not agree with expert stylist Andrew on fashion tip #2, although I do find it to be an intriguing topic. I have given thought to my own dainty jewelry, but there are few opportunities for me to wear it in the Winter. Fine jewelry is light and delicate; how easily do you think it will lay over a turtleneck or chunky sweater? By all means, if you have the perfect outfit for that delicate gold chain and pendant, wear it!

My second issue is that I don’t believe Andrew has taken “scale” into account. Not every woman is going to look great in fine, delicate jewelry. And there is no reason why women over 50 cannot wear chunky jewelry if it suits their outfit and their personal style.

#3 Get Yourself a Good Bag

“Accessories are fun! While they are, of course, functional, they can be transformational for your outfit. A lot of designers are playing around with bag sizes—oversized, super tiny. A woman carrying a ‘power’ bag demands attention.” —Andrew Gelwicks

Agreed, every woman deserves at least one designer bag! These bags are used year after year and never go out of style! One or two seasonal bags for warm and cool months should suffice. Choose from traditional shoulder or tote bags, or opt for a fashionable crossbody bag!

#4 Make Sure You’re Wearing the Right Bra

“More than anything, it’s really important to have your bra properly fitted. That’s a staple every woman should have in their closet, and they should be fitted for it rather than just going to the store and guessing their size.” —Paul Cavaco

25 Fashion Tips from Expert Stylists for Women 50+

Paul nailed this one. I have posted more than once about the importance of a professional bra fitting. If it’s been a while, it’s time to head to Soma’s, Nordstrom, or Victoria’s Secret for a professional bra fitting! Trying on bras is no fun, and having someone run around to get different sizes and give you a hand with the fit is the way to go!

#5 Don’t be Afraid of Color

Jane Fonda wore this amazing Brandon Maxwell gown to the 2017 Emmys, and it was a huge pop of color. Since seeing that on her, I’m so into it, especially on older people. It’s sophisticated and young but not immature or obnoxious.” —Andrew Gelwicks

Ditto, I must concur with Paul, and while you don’t necessarily need to go head to toe in hot pink, try adding some contrasting “pops” of color either in your clothes or accessories. If you don’t know what your best colors are, have a professional color analysis done and find out. Then take your color fan with you shopping for that perfect shade of pink!

#6 Buy a White Button Down

“A crisp white button-down is the perfect piece every woman should have. It looks polished but can be worn running errands, and it can go from day to night. It’s a hero piece.” —Negar Ali Kline

I agree with Negar, a white button-down is a classic for every age group! However, button-down shirts don’t work well for all bodies. In that case, other more flattering options should be considered. Instead of the button-down, consider a crisp white wrap, pull-over partial button-down, or V-neck blouse.

Fashion Tip #6 from Expert Stylists

#7 Find the Right Pair of Jeans

“Dark denim is more polished, whereas light denim reads a bit more casual. In a professional setting, dark denim is a safe choice, but more important than the wash of the denim is the fit.” —Negar Ali Kline

Shopping for the right pair of jeans is no easy task, considering the number of styles available. It’s smart to prepare by shopping online and checking product availability before heading to the mall.

Don’t assume you are the same size in all styles because every style fits differently. For example, a skinny leg will not fit the same as a wide leg. If you are unsure of the fit or need help finding a style of denim that suits your body shape and proportions, ask for help! Alternatively book a pant fitting with a personal stylist and nail your perfect fit!

25 Fashion Tips from Expert Stylists for Women 50+

#8 Have a Go-To Pair of Heels

Again, whether you need a pair of dress heels in your closet depends on your lifestyle. However, it’s probably not a bad idea to have one pair of comfortable heels for that special occasion. To keep your feet comfortable and stable, I suggest a pump, sandal, platform, or bootie with a kitten heel!

#9 Wearing a Skirt, Mind the Knees

I think that after a certain age, your skirt should really be at or below the knee, no matter how beautiful your legs are. It looks more appropriate, and it doesn’t look like you’re trying to look young.

Paul Cavaco

I love how men tell women what is appropriate after a certain age. I disagree with Paul on many levels, but looking like a 20-year-old is not synonymous with skirts above the knee! If you have great legs and knees, rock that skirt! I’m not suggesting a mini-skirt, but an inch or so above the knee is really okay!

#10 Flaunt a Fresh Manicure

Having your nails manicured goes a long way. It’s really all of the little details that make you look good.” —Paul Cavaco

I agree; as a detail-oriented person, I believe that self-care is just as important as the clothes you are putting on. Performing a ritualistic self-care act like a self-manicure is therapeutic and relaxing. Or alternatively, go to a nail salon and have them done, but make it a regular practice!

25 Fashion Tips from Expert Stylists for Women 50+

#11 Make a Statement with Your Watch

Fashion is always changing, but you should be sure to have a nice watch. Maybe you can’t afford a classic Cartier tank, but if you know what it looks like, then you can easily find something similar.”

Paul Cavaco

A good watch is a statement piece and a great asset to your jewelry box. Buy the best quality you can afford and one that suits your personal style. Make your statement watch the center of attention by pairing it with neutral classic pieces like a white button-down and/or blazer with the sleeves rolled up!

#12 Choose Where You Want the Most Attention

A lot of the women I dress have a certain area of their body that they don’t feel as confident of. If you’re going to be more conservative with one part of your body, then you need to compensate by highlighting another area. Have a leg moment if you don’t want to draw attention to your shoulders.”Andrew Gelwicks

I have written about “focal” points and how to use them to shift attention to the desired areas. If you want the most attention to be on your legs, wearing a dress with a side slit will do the trick! For example, if you aim to shift attention from your lower body, wear a statement accessory at or around the face.

25 Fashion Tips from Expert Stylists for Women 50+

#13 Shapewear is Key

“Wearing the proper shapewear underneath everything helps to give you smooth lines.” —Julia Perry

Absolutely shapewear for those very fitted dresses is a must! Even if you don’t need a lot of control, shapewear does a great job of smoothing everything out! While shapewear is not necessary for all styles, fitted styles like slip dresses and skirts, bodycon, and sweater dresses will benefit from smoothing shapewear. One brand other than Spanx is Yummie, which comes in three different levels of control!

#14 Don’t let anybody tell you not to take risks

While women at fifty know who they are and are authentic to their style, I think there’s no reason why they can’t be a little daring and try something new. Whether that be a print or a new color, I don’t think there should be limitations.” —Negar Ali Kline

Regarding fashion, it’s important to remember that there are no hard and fast rules. Age should not be a limiting factor in what we wear, as fashion is all about self-expression and feeling confident in what we put on. Whether in your 20s or in your 60s, there are always new styles and trends to try. Don’t hesitate to step out of your comfort zone and experiment with different colors, fabrics, textures, and accessories. Who knows, you might just discover a new look that you love and that makes you feel fabulous no matter what your age is. So go ahead and embrace the adventure of fashion, and rock your personal style!

#15 Don’t forget about accessories.

“A scarf is extremely multi-purpose. A silk scarf can be tied at the neck or draped over your shoulders in the evening.” —Negar Ali Kline

Accessories are a great way to add personality and style to any outfit. From statement jewelry to trendy handbags, the right accessory can take a look from basic to bold. When choosing accessories, it’s important to consider the occasion, your personal style, and the colors and patterns of your outfit.

Don’t be afraid to mix and match different accessories to create a unique and individual look. A stack of bracelets or rings can add some boho flair, while a structured handbag can give a touch of sophistication.

Remember, accessories are meant to be fun and playful, so don’t take them too seriously. Experiment with different styles and have fun expressing yourself through your fashion choices.

#16 Choose Versatile Shoes

“Loafers are the perfect shoe to finish your look. They’re so multi-purpose because you can wear them to run errands in then to meet friends for dinner.” —Negar Ali Kline

Unless you have a large closet or like spending money, opt for versatility in your shoe choices. For a minimalist closet, wear neutrals in your seasonal color palette: White, off-white or Cream, Black, and Navy and metallic neutrals(bronze, silver, gold). And every woman should have a nude-colored shoe in their closet because nudes go with everything!

#17 Mix It Up

“Carolina Herrera wears a white button-down with a ball gown skirt, and it’s so chic. It’s sort of unexpected to pair those two items together, but it works really well.” —Negar Ali Kline

If you are a follower of fashion, you can’t help but notice the trend of combining casual pieces with business casual or dressy pieces. Fashion sneakers have become all the rage, and you will surely find a sneaker you can pair with pretty much any outfit!

#18 Use textures to guide attention

“Stomach and arms are typically the two spots women are most worried about. If you’re wearing a dress with draping or ruching, it can help the stomach area.” —Ashley Pruitt

Listening to women I work with in the fitting room, I know tummy weight is the number one issue women over 50 have!

The key to camouflaging the mid-section and creating a more flattering silhouette is wearing the right clothes. You have two choices 1) bypass the waist all-together with a Shift style dress or 2) Define the waist. One of the most effective styles is the empire waist dress, which has a high waistline that falls just below the bust. And shift dresses bypass the waist. Another great option is the A-line dress, which flares out gradually from the waist, creating a slimming effect on the midsection.

For a more casual look, try wearing tops that have ruching or draping around the midsection, as this can help hide any bumps or lumps. In addition to these styles, choosing the right fabrics and colors can also make a big difference. Opt for darker colors and matte fabrics, as they tend to be more slimming and less likely to draw attention to any flaws. By wearing the right styles, fabrics, and colors, you can easily camouflage your midsection and feel confident and comfortable in your personal style!

#19 Define Your Waist

Typically speaking, oversized items are hard to pull off. It’s usually flattering to define your waist.”

Negar Ali Kline

Oversized items are especially hard to pull off when you are petite. However, it can be done with the correct pieces and styled appropriately. The trick to pulling this style off is by making the oversized item the statement piece and pairing it with clothing or accessories of contrasting sizes. For example, pair an oversized sweater or blazer over a skinny leg or fitted skirt like a pencil! Additionally, styles that define the waist are flattering and available in various clothing, including Wrap, Sheath, and A-line skirts and dresses. Cropped, waisted jackets and belted blazers or sweaters do a fab job of defining the waist. Using a wide belt will make your waist appear smaller.

# 20 Default to black heels.

“Every woman should have a nice pair of black high heels.” —Paul Cavaco

A black heel is a classic and perhaps the most widely used shoe in women’s fashion! A neutral black is a great basic for a capsule wardrobe. For comfort, invest in a quality heel with a kitten, block, platform or wedge heel.

#21 Don’t be Afraid of Prints

“I wish older women would wear more colors, prints, and designs. I think a lot of women feel like they kind of have to disappear or turn down their look, but that’s not true.” —Andrew Gelwicks

Prints are fabulous and add interest to any outfit. I honestly do not understand why some women shy away from them! A printed top is a statement piece and doesn’t need a necklace! Choose prints in modern from abstract or floral prints, pair them with a neutral, or pick a color in the print and use that to loop in coordinating accessories!

Adding a print or two to your capsule wardrobe will elevate your personal style and make you shine!

#22 Good hair can make all the difference

“You want to keep yourself looking current, and having a great hair cut and color makes a big difference.” —Paul Cavaco

As we age, our hair may become thinner, grayer, and more brittle. However, that doesn’t mean we can’t still have fabulous hair! Choosing the right hairstyle can make all the difference. For women over 50, it’s important to find a style that flatters your face shape, hair texture, and lifestyle. Some popular options include a layered bob, a pixie cut, or a classic shoulder-length style. Adding highlights or lowlights can also help add dimension and depth to your hair. Ultimately, the best hairstyle is one that makes you feel confident and beautiful. Don’t be afraid to try something new and experiment with different looks until you find the perfect style!

Check out modern hairstyles for women over 50

#23 Pay Attention to the Fit

“When you reach a certain age, it’s especially important that everything is fitted for you. If clothes are fitted well, then a lot of the things that are problematic are no longer problematic.” —Paul Cavaco

Fit matters at any age; when the fit is too big, you appear sloppy, and when the fit is too tight, every bump and bulge is revealed! It is important to evaluate and take stock of the fit of your clothing regularly, especially as your body shape may change with age.

It’s also important to understand that fit is not just about size but also about the style and cut of the garment. For example, a loose-fitting blouse may be the right size, but if it doesn’t flatter your body shape, it won’t look as good as a well-fitted one. On the other hand, a fitted dress may accentuate your curves in all the right places, but if it’s too tight, it can be uncomfortable and unflattering. And check the shoulder seams of shirts with inset sleeves to ensure the proper fit. Therefore, finding the right fit requires trying on different sizes, styles, and cuts to see what works best for you.

In my experience working in the fitting room, I have found that many women think they know what looks best on them. However, in reality, the majority of the women I work with don’t understand the nuances of their body shape or what styles are going to be the most flattering on them. My best advice when shopping is to ask for an expert opinion instead of assuming you understand the fit!

A good stylist will be able to spot your overall body balance and proportions and will be able to offer knowledgeable recommendations!

#24 Embrace the Peplum

“Peplum tops are wonderful, and women over fifty can really benefit from their shape. They can easily go from casual to dressy.” —Julia Perry

Peplum styles work great on all straight and curvy bodies! If you are rectangular, a peplum-style blouse will give you some hips. If you are curvy, peplum styles will skim the hips and define the waist!

Peplum styles have become increasingly popular in recent years, and for good reason! This versatile style can be dressed up or down, depending on the occasion. Whether you’re headed to the office or out for a night on the town, a peplum top or dress is a great option. And it also adds a touch of femininity to any outfit. So if you’re looking to add some variety to your wardrobe, consider giving the peplum style a try!

#25 Don’t forget the little things

“Keep all of the little details crisp, and they will make all the difference in the world.” —Julia Perry

Pay attention to the details of your outfit. When you look in the mirror, do all the pieces of your outfit jive well together, or is there something off?

Making sure that your outfit comes together seamlessly is an important part of looking put-together. You want to ensure that your clothing items complement each other and that there are no clashing patterns or colors. It’s also important to pay attention to the fit of your clothing. Clothing that is too tight or too loose can throw off the balance of your outfit. Take a few minutes each morning to check yourself in the mirror and make any necessary adjustments before heading out for the day. Your attention to detail will not go unnoticed, and you will feel more confident in your appearance.

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Namaste, Beth

25 fashiion tips for women over 50

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