What’s Aging You: Too Much Razzle-Dazzle
True, sparkly stuff has been all the rage lately. But when you go overboard with metallics, sequins, and other bedazzlements, Peg Bundy–style, your clothes suggest that you’re more interested in guarding your slot machine in Atlantic City than you are in staying on trend.
The more youthful approach: The key to looking your best as you age is to aim for elegance. Burn those rhinestone-pocketed jeans and incorporate shimmer in a subtle, sophisticated way: Try a blouse with beading the same color as the fabric, a gemstone-collared sheath, or a sequin-trimmed cardigan. “Less is more,” says Sherrie Mathieson, the author of Steal This Style.
What’s Aging You: Underaccessorizing
You put on a top, a bottom, and shoes, and consider your ensemble complete. But as Olympia Dukakis’s character wisely said in Steel Magnolias: “The only thing that separates us from the animals is our ability to accessorize.” Seriously, though, if you’re not putting a little extra effort into getting dressed, you’ll create the impression that your style has stopped evolving and you’ve given up on the idea that fashion is fun.
The more youthful approach: Finishing touches, such as jewelry, a scarf, and a belt, are critical. Start with baby steps. “Try never to leave the house without a piece of statement jewelry,” says Rothman. “A versatile yet modern style is a long necklace of circular links in gold or silver.” Boston suggests these items for no-brainer outfit completion: a silver cuff, a conversation-starting cocktail ring, and chandelier earrings.
What’s Aging You: Mom Slacks
They’re the office version of mom jeans, with a pleated front and a high waist. “These pants are from a time when there weren’t a lot of business-casual options for women,” says Rothman. Due to the extra coverage, some women mistakenly feel that this style helps hide a pooch, yet the cut actually magnifies problem areas.
The more youthful approach: You’ll look younger, not to mention slimmer, in flat-front, midrise trousers with a straight or boot cut. “An inch under your navel is universally flattering,” says Mathieson. “The pants should barely hug your thighs and gradually get a little wider toward the hem to balance out your upper body."