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3 Unflattering Haircuts That Age You Instantly Over 40

Here’s the truth about your hair and aging: you should choose any haircut or style that makes you feel amazing. All hair is different, all personalities are different, and there are no hard and fast rules when it comes to styling. But maybe you’ve been feeling lately like your current hair style isn’t YOU anymore. Whether you’ve outgrown your old look and are bored with it or you feel like the cut itself is leaving your hair looking more limp and lifeless and want to achieve more volume in your hair, you may feel like it’s time for an update and a nice change. Great — but the first thing you probably shouldn’t do is run to your salon with a photo of a celebrity sporting a cutting-edge style. 

“So first I want to warn you about jumping too swiftly on haircut trends,” says Celebrity Stylist Janine Jarman, founder of Curl Cult. “I’m always suspicious of hard core trends. I recommend figuring out if it will work with your day to day look, how hard it will be to grow out, and how much effort is involved to get that look right first before taking the plunge. The general rule of haircuts should be this: Can you achieve it and do you feel good in it?”

And, if you are trying to maintain a fresh look, avoiding these three haircuts can help. 

Super Long Hair

“If you have fine, thinning , fragile , damaged hair: CUT IT OFF,” Jarman recommends. “Healthy hair is always the best bet. If your hair is thin, it only gets thinner as it grows out and if it’s damaged it will only continue to break the longer it gets.”

Gina Rivera, celebrity hairstylist and founder of Phenix Salon Suites, agrees the long straight blunt hair is not always becoming with age. “The long length can pull the features down and make them appear more drawn,” Rivers says, “If you select longer hair, it’s important to opt for longer layers that will create movement and texture. Longer side bangs and face framing pieces can also result in a more youthful appearance by draw the eye to the appealing facial features .In general, this provides for a fresher and more youthful look.”

Blunt shapes   

Speaking of blunt cuts, they can look “clean and pretty in theory,” Jarman says, but they are hard to maintain and offer no softness on mature faces. “I suggest also avoiding stopping at an awkward length like right at the shoulders or something that cuts you off — so land either above the shoulders or generally below shoulders.”

Avoid hair cuts that don’t move

Hair that bounces and moves with the wind is always current and in style. “You want to have body and volume to some degree so it looks great in different climate situations and is adaptable,” Jarman says. If your hair doesn’t naturally have a lot of movement, experimenting with hair tools that can add curl or waves can help. 

“Adding curl or using your natural curl can bring volume to a hairstyle that can also contribute to a person’s youthful appearance,” Rivera says. “An ideal length as we age is nothing longer than the collar bone because it allows for the hair to be styled in trendy, hip, looks which emulate youthfulness.  Likewise, collar length hair is perfect for experimentation with different styles and accessories.”

You should never let your age define your style — and these suggestions won’t apply to everyone. But if your goal is to get a fresher, more modern look that isn’t dated, a little less length and a little more movement is the way to go.