Hair for Middle-Aged Women

Middle-aged woman with long hair and wearing glasses
Photo: Shutterstock
Although there are plenty of middle-aged women who choose to keep their hair long, trends show that the majority of women in fact do cut their hair into a shorter style as they grow older. Many things happen for both men and women in their forties. It’s a transitional decade. When people turn forty, essentially they are at the mid-life point. The mid-life point tends to leave people pondering what the next forty years will bring.
Women begin to think about their aging bodies and how they will carry themselves along the way. Hair is such a big part of our appearance, and it’s also a big contributor to how old one appears to be. There is a lot to be said for "aging gracefully" but does that mean that if you are a woman you must cut your hair into a short style? We think absolutely not!
Why do women of a certain age cut their hair?
Women of a mature age find that cutting their hair shorter can be a rather liberating experience, a badge of honor, if you will. Various women, particularly over the age of forty-five view the cutting of their long hair as a rite of passage. They feel that they have earned their right to wear a short style much like the women who proudly let their non-pigmented hair (gray hair) shine.
By the time many women reach their forties, they have likely spent most of their lives with hair on the longer side of length. When you have spent a large amount of your time styling, shampooing, combing, and just dealing with long hair, it can be energizing and freeing to not have to deal with all of the work that comes along with having and maintaining long hair. An explanation as to why some women cut their hair shorter in their forties is simple. They have had long hair for the first forty-something years and now they plan to have a shorter, much more manageable hairstyle for the next forty years.
Unfortunately, peer pressure doesn't go away just because you're a woman of a certain age. Most women feel a sense of social pressure to cut their long hair into a shorter style as they get older, and, whether they actually go through with it or not, the pressure is real. Some women are just not sure what to do with their hair as they get older. They look around and see that the majority of women their age have short hair, so they decide to take the plunge and go for it.
Older woman who is wearing her hair short
Image: AI illustration
Let's be honest, all that long hair is a lot of work. It's simply easier to maintain a shorter hairstyle. Some women look for a wash-and-go style because there comes a point in your life when your time is of greater value than putting effort into attempting to be the most attractive woman in the room. Time becomes more important than most other things, aside from health. There comes a point in a woman's life when she doesn't want to waste precious time curling, flat-ironing, teasing, crimping, or round-brushing her hair.
Mid-life and changing hair
Let's be real. People in their forties are at mid-life. It's the time when certain men go out and get a sports car and likewise, some women cut off their hair. It's a way to legally rebel against obligations and the mundanity that life can sometimes bring. A woman who has had long hair her entire life and decides to cut it finally has the chance to do something unpredictable and spontaneous, and even a little rebellious, in some way.
Just like people in their forties are going through a transition period in their life, the hair also goes through a transition. That's right, hair changes as you age. As a woman gets older, the hair changes its initial texture and begins to lose its pigmentation. Alas, one of the drawbacks to aging is that women are finding that they have to choose between either coloring their hair or changing its length. It is advised not to have long gray hair. If you want to keep your color natural and let your beautiful gray shine, then it is best to keep it shoulder-length or shorter. If you desire to keep your length long, then you need to find a flattering hair color to complement the length.
Older woman wearing her hair in a rejuvenating pixie cut
Image: AI illustration
The undeniable rejuvenating effect of short hair
What about the idea that shorter hair has a rejuvenating effect? A great many people state that they find that short hair and pixie cuts have a rejuvenating effect for them. How can short hair be rejuvenating when so many people associate short hair with getting older? Well, we like to keep it real here at Hairfinder. The fact of the matter is that with age, faces, much like everything else with age, start to sag and cutting your hair into a shorter style gives the illusion of a facelift. Generally older women do appear to be younger with shorter hair because it lifts the aged face, whereas long hair drags it down.
As mentioned earlier, the hair goes through as many changes as we age, as the rest of our bodies do. One of the biggest reasons why women cut their hair as they get older is because it isn’t as thick as it used to be and styling it is proven to be more and more difficult as time goes on. Thinning hair is easier to camouflage with shorter hair because you can layer on top of one another to build volume. The longer the hair is, the heavier it is and ends up weighing it down, creating an undesired look.
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