I recently had lunch with a girlfriend and I immediately noticed a brightness to her face and a springier spring to her step. Just before I asked what her secret was, I noticed her hair was laying differently and in fact, she had cut four inches from it and had all sorts of fun layers throughout. She looked amazing! Could all that gorgeousness come from a haircut? In a word, yes!
Turns out letting hair grow past the chin can add years to your face and layers truly are the key. “Without them, hair doesn’t move and nothing makes you seem older than stiff hair,” says hairstylist Juan Carlos Maciaques of the Rita Hazan Salon in New York City. “No matter what your length, you want delicate layers throughout and face-framing pieces. This creates lush, healthy-looking hair, which softens your entire appearance.”
You don’t have to abandon your long hair once you hit 40, just get regular trims so your hair maintains that healthy look.
When it comes to your hair, there are other easy ways to help make you look and feel fresher…
Learn to love your texture
If your have kinky, curly or coarse hair and wear it natural, “a cut that’s shoulder-length or shorter is the most youthful; any longer and your hair starts to balloon around your head, which piles on the years,” says hairstylist Tippi Shorter.
This type of hair also requires a lot of moisture to prevent drying and damage. Shorter’s favorite curl-enhancing product is Kinky-Curly, an ethnic haircare line with different curl enhancers, from lightweight serums to rich creams.
Ever since we were little girl’s, we have been led to believe that glossy hair equals beauty and youth. An at-home glaze like John Frieda Clear Shine Luminous Glaze ($9.99) will help restore sheen with nourishing oils and works on all hair types. Apply once a month to wet, clean hair, wait five minutes, rinse and then follow with conditioner.
â€œSide-swept bangs give you a fun, youthful vibe,â€ say hairstylist Gretchen Monahan. â€œPlus, they instantly create fullness toward the front of your head, where women tend to lose hair.â€
Go for thicker bangs (wispy is aging and can make you look like your hair is thinning), but keep the ends soft and fringy; bluntâ€™s too harsh.
Give your hair color a lift
Try going a shade lighter or add some subtle highlights to cover gray and help give skin tone a more youthful appearance. Most people look best with lighter hair as they age since it helps to brighten the complexion. On the other hand, donâ€™t lighten more than a shade or two since it can look harsh and be difficult to maintain.
Hair care fun facts:
- Losing up to 100 strands of hair a day is perfectly normal. Anything more than that, however, and you should talk to your doctor.
- Brushing 100 strokes through the hair every night is not a myth; it actually does boost scalp circulation and distributes healthy oils to the ends of your hair, where you need them most. However, always use a natural fiber brush.
- Hair always grows faster during the summer than winter.
- Many believe that frequent washing of their hair increases hair loss and regular cutting of the hair increases the growth of the hair, which are both inaccurate and false.
Photo credit: Franciov