I have the great privilege to watch women walk into the salon feeling out of sorts and walk out with a bounce. The simple act of the right haircut makes us feel good. But give a woman the wrong hair and she’s miserable. If the hairstyle does not accurately reflect who she is, it is often the result of the hairdresser not getting an accurate read. Some less experienced hairdressers see women in the second act as “older” and cookie-cut in kind. This is why it is important to have your image profile adjectives at hand, ready to explain how you want your hair to look and feel. Let’s discuss what your image profile says about you and your hair.
Find the Right Hairstyle For You
As a Classic, a timeless and appropriate hairstyle feels best to you. You prefer your hair to feel finished and put together. Once you’ve found a style that works, it’s likely you will keep it for a long time. Though you may sometimes feel like you should be trying something new, you come back quickly to what works.
My client Mary, a Classic, has worn the exact same haircut since I attempted to help her grow it into something new years ago. In the course of “trying things a little differently” she’d somehow turn me back to exactly the original cut. Trying new things just didn’t work. This cut suits her, she likes it, and so it shall be. Though she sometimes is concerned about being too staid, there is no reason to change. Change is not always good, particularly for the classic. Choose your variety in attire as flash, not your hairstyle.
You’re most comfortable with balanced hair color close to what you are (or were) naturally. If you’re covering gray, soft medium to light browns, or blondes, these tend to work best as they appear most natural. For the Classic, it doesn’t have to be natural, just look natural. When you’ve found the perfect color there is no reason to change. It’s your color and should work well for you for years.
Use the words classic, sophisticated, timeless, and appropriate when talking to your hairdresser. There is nothing wrong and very much right with preferring a classic hairstyle. With a classic style you will always be appropriate and attractive.
If you are a Casual, you prefer your hair to be practical, sporty, simple, and fresh. Relaxed, comfortable and hassle-free, you like your hair to match your informal lifestyle. You like to look good, but often don’t like to spend the time it may take to make that happen. This is can be a challenge as you age. Looking natural and being natural are two different things.
Simple, no nonsense hairstyles appeal to you as you “just don’t have the time to fuss” with complicated hairstyles. Usually short, or long and pulled back works best. You are more likely to procrastinate about coloring your hair. If you finally do, it is nothing too far from your natural color.
If easy care is paramount, tell your hairdresser that aside from special occasions you will spend very little time on your hair. Fortunately, with good hair and a great cut the simplest can also look the best. This is the art of hairdressing.
As a Romantic you prefer your hair to be soft and feminine. Nothing too stark, short or severe. Hair color leans toward soft chestnut browns, strawberry blondes or soft, natural wheat blondes. Whatever the color, you choose the softer tone. You enjoy the feel of hair and hair accessories. You may have been known for braids, velvety ponytails, and pretty hair accessories.
A romantic can certainly enjoy short hair, but it needs to feel full. If your hair is very fine, rollers, back combing, and whimsical curls will often appeal. As you age, there is nothing wrong with keeping your hair long and pulled back or put up. This can be a very attractive and feminine look.
Corrine is a 65-year-old Romantic who has consistently and appropriately cut her hair shorter over the years to reflect her best. Still, now at its shortest, it is full, wavy and soft with little product. It captures her feminine flair and looks lovely with her romantic attire.
Explain to your hairdresser that you want your hair to feel feminine, soft, and pretty. If you must keep length, make an appointment for lessons in how to wear it up or back. This allows you to always look age appropriate and attractive.
Dramatics like to make a statement. Clean, simple, eye-catching looks that ooze chic. Whether it’s pulled back into a low chignon, a cropped boy-cut, or a blunt geometric bob-anything bold will light your fire. Dramatics feel best with a signature style rather than constantly evolving looks. Since you, more than others, will often spend the time necessary to make your hairstyle great, you may be able to do your hair even better than your hairdresser.
Consider adding softness to that drama as you age, however. Stacy came to me with a hard-edged black blunt bob. At age 56, her signature look had become a bit off-putting. But by softly angling the geometrics and lifting the color, it allowed her to keep the drama suitably becoming.
Remind your stylist that you want a cut that is “a look.” This way they know to think out of the box a bit and push the boundaries to match your theatrical panache. If you are willing to do what it takes-balancing the drama with makeup, clothing, and accessories-there’s no reason for you to disappear into quiet maturity. Not that you ever could.
When it comes to Innovative hair, anything offbeat as possible suits your whimsical attitude. Short and spiky, blunt, wild, or asymmetrical; you like change, though you may find the options lessen as you age. If you try to grow your hair out, you rarely get it much past your chin, as this is about the time you get bored and ready for a boost of excitement. Wigs and extensions appeal to you. Bette, who has worn every cut and color over the years, reached a crux. She thought her hairdresser had lost her creativity. The reality was that at age 42, though still very young, Bette’s hair and face could not carry off the dramatically out-there looks of her 20s.
Tell your hairdresser to be creative-that you want to look individual but appropriate. Though you may be willing to try anything, it’s important that you balance attention-grabbing hair with creative dress. One of my Innovatives dresses quite casually. Still she insists on hair that is crazy with chunks of fuchsia and hard-edged lines. It doesn’t work. For innovative hair to work on an aging face, it is necessary to balance it with makeup and clothes that are offbeat and upscale.
Your look is about being a woman. You prefer your hair long and tousled with bangs that you can toss away in a flirtatious moment. Big, full, fun, and sensual describe the hairstyle you like. If it’s short, it’s short and messy. But you add dazzle to it with dangling earrings.
Hair color tends toward making a statement. Rarely does an Alluring over age 50 settle for gray (And Allurings want to stay alluring forever). Recently a woman came into the salon with long blonde hair, tight jeans, a low cut blouse, gold brocade blazer and four inch gold stilettos. She was 82. Someone wasn’t giving up without a huge fight!
Though you may prefer long, reconsider shorter hair as you age. (Shorter meaning above clavicle length). Show the sexy in your subtle clothing cues. Enjoy the art of makeup, and keep the hair at a manageable length or pulled back off the face. There is no reason to give up your alluring personality, but it does help to rein it in a bit to avoid looking camp.