We believe women should feel empowered to get whichever haircut they choose—short, long, undercut, close-crop—whatever it is that suits your mood or vibe, you should wear. Hairstyling is an artistry, and your stylist can work with your preferences and their own extensive knowledge to help craft the look that's most suitable to your features. This also pertains to age—while, again, women should wear whichever style they please at any age, there are certain tricks of the trade that will actually help flatter your assets better than others (and styles that may, unfortunately, accentuate signs of aging in a manner you may not find agreeable).
Meet the Expert
- Marc Trinder is the co-founder of Trinder Hair Studios in the UK. Previously, he was an official stylist at the BAFTAs and an ambassador and educator for L’Oréal Professionnel. His work has appeared on the runways of London fashion week and several of UK's leading magazines.
- Sam Burnett is the owner and creative director of Hare and Bone salon in the UK. He has worked with celebrities such as Dua Lipa and Charli XCX, and his work has been featured in many top magazines and brand campaign imagery.
To reveal just what could be aging you in terms of your hair, we asked two pro hairdressers, Marc Trinder, owner of Trinder Hair Studios, and Sam Burnett, owner of Hare & Bone salon, to reveal 24 of the most anti-aging styles on the circuit.
The universally-flattering shoulder-length cut is a celebrity favorite. It's also super customizable, meaning your hairstylist can work with you to create the perfect layers or face-framing look.
“Shoulder-skimming styles are super flattering, as they graze the décolletage and gently frame the face,” says Burnett. “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.”
Bangs are a great way to switch up your style, but the key is to find the length and style that best suits your face shape and features. “A full, blunt fringe can be dramatic, but it will hide lines and can completely frame your face and draw attention to your eyes,” reveals Trinder. 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.”
To dry hair, use a boar's hair paddle brush when blow-drying bangs. Brush bangs to the left, than to the right, aiming the blow dryer down onto bangs. Our editors swear by the Mason Pearson ($240). It's a worthy investment that will last a lifetime.
A tip on drying: be sure to use the right hairbrush. Don't wrap your bangs with a round brush or you could end up with dated "bubble bangs."
Short and Natural
Consider putting away your irons and skipping the professional straightening treatment and let your natural curls be. Moisturizing products with oils like argan will help keep frizz at bay while making sure your natural texture isn't weighed down. And remember: Moisturized hair is the key to keeping curls defined.
The key to the center part is to not make it exactly center, which can look too perfect and unnatural. Instead, aim for just a bit off to the left or right—wherever your natural part lies.
“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.
Dyeing your hair can take its toll on your strands, so it's always a good idea to use products that will help both preserve your color and maintain the health of your hair, like a color-protecting shampoo. If you're not into going for a full-on color, perhaps try some highlights or lowlights first. If color maintenance is too much trouble, skip it altogether and let your natural color do its thing.
As Julia Roberts demonstrates, a lob can go in multiple directions. One of our favorite iterations, though, is a wavy lob with a deep side part. Use it to show off a colorful earring or to better frame your face and try an easy DIY technique to create bouncy waves.
Short and Layered
Layered hair is polarizing. Too many layers can leave you with a dated look, but the right kind of layers can add body and fullness to otherwise limp locks.
“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.”
Short Bob With Waves
Actress Charlize Theron's bob is slightly more casual, thanks to the loose wave throughout. The trick here is to apply a texture spray from the roots to the end. We like the light hold of Verb Sea Texture Spray ($9).
Take a cue from Eva Mendes and try over-the-top volume for a youthful look. To add lift, use foam rollers at the crown and concentrate product on the ends of hair.
“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.”
J. Lo's signature ponytail is incredibly youthful, but can still manage to look dressed-up. The trick is to smooth flyaways—use a product like Moroccanoil Smoothing Lotion ($34)—and add plenty of length for drama.
Cate Blanchett's look is stylish and slightly androgynous, thanks to a slicked-back texture that keeps hair out of the face. A weightless, water-based pomade (we like Rudy's Shine Pomade, $19) will work to keep hair out of the face without weighing it down.
While ponytails are considered casual, daytime hairstyles, Eva Longoria proves they can work at night, too—and don't have to veer into severe, pulled-back-face territory. Here, Washington has volume in her roots and a slight wave through the rest of the hair.
For more volume, try teasing the hair before pulling it back.
Short Beach Waves
A great beach spray comes in handy for Kelly Ripa's short waves. For a surf-and-sand look, invest in a product without any stickiness or heaviness, so hair can shine. We recommend IGK Beach Club Volume Texture Spray ($29).