This post is part of the Gorgeous 50’s series inspired by a book given to me by one of my sisters on my 50th birthday – ‘Grown up and Gorgeous in your 50’s’ by Pamela Robson. I will be sharing some of Pamela’s words and my own thoughts along the way. To see all posts published as part of this series, go here.
Pamela has quite a lot to say about our ‘crowning glory’. So much so, that I’m going to break up the post on this subject into two parts. This is Part 1.
By your 50’s, you’ve probably tried many a hairstyle and have come to some understanding about what works with your hair type and lifestyle. Whatever your natural hair colour, it’s likely that grey hair has become quite noticeable, and your locks will have also become more brittle. But don’t give up on the battle and turn to the blue rinse! In your 50’s, your hair really can be your crowning glory. So, how to stay modern, without having to be ‘trendy’? You’ll need to approach hair care, style and colour …
We’re talking shampoo, conditioner and an intensive weekly treatment (if your hair is very dry, damaged or you use heat styling tools often). Choose gentle, moisturising formulas, and don’t over-wash or over-condition your hair. Hair should squeak when you rinse the shampoo out, and conditioner should only be applied to the ends.
Gloss your locks
A gleaming, polished style will take years off your look. To re-create that salon shine, invest in a conditioning, glossing spray. Lightly spritz it over dry hair for a pick-me-up that flatters every shade – even grey.
Let’s be honest. The last time perfectly coiffed hair was fashionable was the 1960’s, when hairspray was all the rage. It followed on from the stiff French pleat of the 1950’s (think Hitchcock’s blondes), the permed look of the war years and the lacquered wave of the 1920’s Flappers. Today, hair that doesn’t move screams ‘old lady’. Your 50’s is a time when less is definitely more – so it’s important you find the perfect, simple cut. Hair should be casual, and look natural and healthy. So talk to your hairdresser about a style that works with your hair type, is easy to recreate at home, and requires very little styling product.
The Perfect Simple Cut? Experts are unanimous on this. It’s the layered bob. Or, if you want to go longer, a shoulder-length cut with layers that softly frame your face. The best wash-and-go cut is a short do with lots of texture.
On the fringe
A fringe can hide a multitude of un-Botoxed brow lines, but keep it soft and layered. Short, thick fringes are hard to pull off and can overwhelm your face.
It’s a long story
Once, it was said that after 30 a woman shouldn’t have long hair. Well, that’s another rule we’ve said goodbye to! If your face isn’t too thin, go for it. Just remember that straggly, thin, unkept hair doesn’t ever look good, no matter what your age.
Before I start rabitting on about my hair and hair in general, I wanted to acknowledge our sisters out there who have thinned hair or no hair due to illness or for any other reason. I see you! Health over hair! You are still beautiful! If you need a little boost of confidence and a little help to feel pretty though, I had a little Google and wow there are so many places where you can buy hats, head scarves, turbans and all manner of beautiful things. I’m sure you’re more aware of all this than I, but here are just a few that I found: JAS Fashion | Hat House | Pink Sisters
I’ve been very fortunate with my hair, though I didn’t think so when I was younger! I have had thick curly hair all my life. I remember as a young girl hating my hair and using bobby pins to try and flatten it much to my Mother’s disdain! I wanted long, silky straight and shiny hair like Marcia Brady!!
Now that I’m a little more um … mature … I recognise how lucky I am to have thick hair and also curly hair. I have options – leave it curly or straighten it with my GHD. I really do like having those options too!
Two years ago I had surgery and a few months after that surgery I lost a lot of hair. It grew back eventually (well most of it) but during that time I had a taste of having thin and fine hair and I did not like it at all! It is not as thick as it used to be anymore but thankfully it has thickened up quite a bit from the worst days following the post surgery hair loss.
I prefer to keep some length to my hair. I have had periods in my life where I have cut my hair short and I have always hated it. It made me feel old and matronly and more to the point … I just didn’t feel like me. Who knows, maybe one day it will feel right to cut my hair shorter but right now I’m happy with it sitting on my shoulders and therefore giving me options to have it straight, curly, up or down, or even braided if I choose to!
Hot tip for curly haired ladies & those that love braids
Speaking of braids and curly hair … if you have curly hair especially … you really need to go check out Christina from Hair Romance. She provides wonderful tutorials on managing curly hair and has the hugest repertoire of beautiful ways to braid your hair! I met her in person once at a ProBlogger conference too and she is a lovely person to boot!
To grey or not to grey?
Grey hair is inevitable isn’t it. It comes sooner for some than others. At first for me it was just a little grey at the front under my fringe area – a bit like a skunk stripe but hidden from view. I think I have quite a bit more areas of grey now but I get my hair coloured and don’t notice it too much. As Mum says … she goes to get “dipped”! I do too and I’ll continue to for as long as it feels right for me. I don’t go as blonde as used to in my younger days but maybe I will again one day when the greys and regrowth become a bit more arduous! Each to their own and whatever makes you feel good I say.
I don’t know what on earth Pamela is talkin ’bout when she says only condition on the ends of your hair. Perhaps that is something that works for one with oily hair? For me though, I’ve always had dry hair, so I condition my whole head of hair! Do you have oily hair? Tell me if conditioning only on the ends is a thing for those with oily hair?
Shiny hair / Glossy sprays
Pamela mentions how important it is to have shiny, glossy hair and that we should use ‘glossy’ sprays … soooo … I did a little Googling and here’s a list of Best Hair Shine Spray’s as advised by Adore Beauty. I haven’t thoroughly investigated this list as yet but I do intend to because as a curly (& dry) haired girl, I can always use more shine! I used to have a much loved hair shine spray product but it was discontinued so I am on the hunt for a replacement!
Look I think that it doesn’t matter what your age is – you do whatever makes you feel good and that includes whether to have a fringe or not and if you do choose to have a fringe, whether it’s soft and feathered or thick and chunky. Your face. Your body. Your hair. Do as you please!
Do you like your hair? Has your hairstyle changed much over the years? Got any favourite hair products to share?
Ciao for now,
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As you know I have thick curly hair – although it’s not as thick as it used to be – and I’m grateful for it. I wear it long – although had very short hair for most of my life – as a child it was cropped because Mum didn’t know what to do with long hair. I rarely blow-dry or straighten it, just take it out of the towel, scrunch some conditioning anti-frizz cream in and shake it about. I only wash it every few days and condition all over – the ends just don’t do it for me. And yes, I get dreadlocks in the summer because I’m in the water most days.
Your hair is thicker and curlier than mine and it looks fabulous how you have it. I can’t imagine you with very short hair! I only wash mine twice a week. Any more and it goes dry and lack lustre and yuk, and yep I condition all over too!
Intellectually I want to own the grey but I find myself going colours – usually red or pinkish because I don’t like it…sometimes the wiring is too strong. I use the vibrant colour as an excuse to be ‘fun’ because my hair is boring, but I suspect it’s a vanity on hiding the grey.
I’m not ready to embrace the grey yet. Not sure if I ever will be?! I reckon just keep doing whatever it is makes you feel good! 🙂
My hair is dead straight and I used to have a perm back in the wonderful 80’s. Then perms went out of fashion and I’ve been happy to own my straight hair ever since – easy to manage, easy to tie back etc. The conditioning on the ends thing is definitely what I was told to do to reduce the limpness that conditioner can give to hair like mine – especially in my younger days when it was oilier. Now I slather it on everywhere – I think conditioners have improved over time and the “ends rule” doesn’t apply any more. As far as grey goes – no thanks – I’ve seen some beautiful model pics of women with grey hair but I’ve never seen anyone IRL who looks younger or brighter with salt and pepper grey hair (long or short) so I’ll keep getting my foils and mixing the silver in with the blonde!
Can you believe I once had a perm too? It was a disaster and I never did it again! Ahhh so the conditioner on the ends only IS an oily hair thing huh? I’m with you on the grey hair. Not for me thanks! I’m gonna wash that grey right outta my hair for a long time yet I think! lol Some people suit it. I don’t think I’d be one of them. My regrowth is still dark brown though so my greys would just be here and there, not all over (at this stage). 🙂
Hi Min – just popping back for #MLSTL and I’ve shared on my SM xx
Our hair is such an important part of our persona and personality. A very interesting post. I wanted long hair as a kid but wasn’t allowed…weird. By high school I did. Then of course, back in the 1960s to dry your hair and have some shape it meant rollers and sitting under a weird plugged in hair dryer at home. My mum gave me my locks, and I passed them onto my daughter and her eldest two. Thick hair, easy to style. Mum was till she died a weekly shampoo and set and always (till the last weeks) had her hair coloured (and permed) by the trusted hairdresser. Me? Over time, and out of time and money I was more than happy to go grey about 8 years ago and with a cut that suits me, I am very happy with my hair.
So much about hair we could keep saying!!
You’re right Denyse – our hair does become kinda part of our personality I think. My Mum always wanted to enhance my curls and I always wanted to flatten them. I really did want ‘Marcia Brady’ hair. Crazy kid! It’s interesting you mention the rollers. In the 80’s I used to put hot rollers on the top of my head to give height and then I’d blow dry the sides for the Farrah Fawcett flicks. So funny thinking back. It’s great that you’re happy with your hair. I’m reasonably happy with mine though a bit sad it’s not quite as thick as it used to be. There’s surprisingly quite a lot one can say about hair! Lol xo
Interesting, informational article. I have always had a love-hate relationship with my hair. In my early 20s as a newlywed and then a young mother, I disliked my thick, wavy hair. But now I wish I had a little bit of that thick hair back. Still wavy over here, but not much of it!
Midway through this post, I went directly to Amazon to look for a spritz that would add gloss and sheen to my hair. That’s on its way. I am in the process of going natural – dark brown with gray, more gray than I knew!! So I have horizontal and vertical stripes right now. Horizontal where the color is growing out and vertical where the gray is coming in. But I hope once I get the color off, my hair will be fuller and healthier.
Hi Leslie – I disliked my thick curly/wavy hair too when I was young. Now I appreciate it and wish it was as thick as it used to be. I hope you’re happy with the spritz for your hair. I always find curly hair benefits from a gloss spray as our hair can tend to look a bit dry and fuzzy sometimes! All the best with growing out the colour too! 🙂
Hi, I’ve had red hair, almost orange when I was really young, all my life. I hated it. It didn’t help that neither my parents, my sister, nor my brother had red hair. Then, in my 40s I decided to embrace it. Now, in my 50s it’s going grey, slowly, but I wouldn’t dream of colouring it to hide these ‘natural highlights’. For me, it’s an acceptance of who I am, and going grey is part of aging. I also don’t use products in my hair – a simple wash with bi-carb soda dissolved in warm water, followed by a vinegar rinse. Perfect. No dangerous chemicals leaching into my system through my skin (or down the drain into our water supply/ground water). 🙂 I know it’s controversial, but I just don’t like to use all these ‘products’ – who knows what’s in them and what they’re doing to us.
I had a perm too back in the day as my hair is straight! I’m quite happy with my current hairdo and every so many years I chop it off short then go back to growing it again! I’m not going grey although I am approaching 59 soon, but I still get ‘dipped’ because I like a change in colour every now and again. Always an interesting topic, so thanks for your thoughts Min and the memories #mlstl
There’s always lots to talk about when it comes to our hair isn’t there Deb? I think your current hairdo looks fabulous! Cheers to getting dipped! lol xo