What if we told you the secret to making you look younger took less than an hour, didn’t involve needles and would guarantee you’ll get ID’d the next time you try and stock up on booze at the office? Okay, so we can’t promise the latter, but we aren’t fibbing about the first two. Instead of charging to the dermatologists and demanding fillers at the first sign of wrinkles or investing a small fortune on miracle creams, give your hairdresser a call. Tell them your issues (the hair ones) about what you think is making you look older, and then let them get scissor-happy. It could be as simple as changing your parting or adding a few cheeky little layers in around your face.
What are you hiding under there? Who cares? No one will know if you’ve got a forehead as smooth as a baby’s behind or if you’re as wrinkly as shar-pei. “The best tactic for a youthful look is to opt for a fringe,” reveals Marc Trinder, owner of Trinder Hair Studios.
“A full, blunt fringe can be dramatic, but it will hide lines and can completely frame your face and draw attention to your eyes.” A foreword on fringes, though. Unless you have a long or oval face shape, go for a softer gradient, says Trinder. “Fringes that curve around and frame the cheekbones will give contour and lift.” So you can pack away that highlighting and bronzing kit right now.
Lob it off
Keep staring at yourself in the mirror wondering what it is that’s making you look more haggard than you’d expect considering your DOB? Look outside the box, or at least beyond your hairline, and it could actually be your hair that’s the problem. The lob (yes, people are still calling it that) is a good shout because it still gives you the length you need to style it out in updos, waves and baby braids, but gets rid of frazzled dead ends.
“Shoulder-skimming styles are super flattering, as they graze the décolletage and gently frame the face,” says Sam Burnett, owner of Hare & Bone salon. “It’s also worth flagging that thinning hair, especially in younger women, is on the rise, and lobs are one of the best ways to create the illusion of thicker, fuller hair, which is incredibly youth-boosting. Fewer layers and breaking up the blunt outline with some freehand cutting keeps it fresh and modern.”
Movement and texture can automatically turn back time, and the style that will give you all that and more is a chin-length tousled bob. Spritely, sexy and surprisingly easy to pull off (unless you’ve got a really, really round face), go in for the chop, and it’ll be like that moment you shaped your brows for the first time. Trust us, this is a serious face changer.
“Going shorter will automatically give you a more confident and youthful look,” says Burnett. “The modern bob has a defined outline that sits around the jawline framing your face and directing the eyes towards your best features. Textured layers and a choppy fringe just above your eyebrows create even more of a playful feeling.”
Layer it on thick
Say the word layers, and what do you think? For us, it’s Rachel from Friends and the cut that Jennifer Aniston will never, ever live down. But they still feature in a hairdresser’s foray as much now as the did in the mid-’90s. Why? Because they have the power to transform your face like nothing else. Flat hair can drag down your features and make your face look longer and older. Keep them snappy and a touch longer if you want to ooze indie vibes, and spritz some volume dust through them to give them a hit of extra oomph.
“Layers that are too short can instantly make a haircut look old-fashioned due to the roundness in shape that it creates,” explains Trinder. “If you feel you need layers due to thickness or you like the texture they create, keep them long, and have the weight removed using slicing or razoring techniques that will create a more, natural graduated effect.”
Okay, it’s not a cut per se, but changing where your parting sits can completely transform your look and take you from adult to minor at the flick of a wrist. Literally. “If you’ve had your parting in the same place for a long time, it can make your hair sit extremely flat,” flags up Trinder. “If you normally wear it straight, try combing your hair back at a diagonal angle, and allow the hair to fall down in a new position.” Use the power of your nozzle to push and direct it into place if you need to. Ghd Air Wanderlust Hairdryer (£99) will do the trick minus any frizz. The result? Body and bounce at the root that will make your hair move and swish like a 6-year-old’s. Remember—pre-straighteners and dip-dye.
Next up, see the hair colours that will turn back time.