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These Are the Most Stunning Long Hairstyles for Women Over 50

Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images

You’ve probably seen those memes floating around the internet that compare women in their 50s from the 1980s and 1990s to women in their 50s today. The meme typically shows the ladies from The Golden Girls on one side with their short, salon-curled ‘dos that are identical to each other, and on the other side it typically features JLo or Jennifer Aniston, rocking the same long hairstyles they’ve been rocking for decades. 

So why the sudden change? It’s hard to say, but one thing’s for sure: women over 50 aren’t going to let society dictate how they should look at a certain age. Long hairstyles on women over 50 aren’t only flattering, but they definitely have the ability to give off a youthful essence that we typically never saw in other decades. If you need a little inspo, we tapped expert colorist and hairstylist Meri Kate O'Connor to share all the ways women are rocking long hairstyles over 50 today. 

About the Expert:

Meri Kate O'Connor is an expert hair colorist. 

1. Blonde Highlights Blending Into Gray

A photo of Christie Brinkley with blonde highlights wearing a red-orange dress
Photo by Nicholas Hunt/Getty Images

Christie Brinkley famously rocks this color and O’Connor says, “blonde highlights will help to blend in gray hair, and not create such a hard grow out line that a single process can.” That means less trips to the salon, people!

2. Try It With Bangs

A photo of Susan Sarandon wearing a black dress and bangs hairstyle
Photo by Susan Sarandon/Getty Images

“Bangs are great because they help create a youthful look and hide any wrinkles you may have,” says O’Connor. “They will help frame your face with longer hair and not just drag your face down.” 

3. Scandi Hairline

A photo of Michelle Pfeiffer wearing a brown silk dress
Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images

If you’ve been on TikTok recently, you’ve probably noticed this trend where people are dyeing their hairline a lighter color to get an overall brightening appearance around the face. Michelle Pfeiffer is a great example of this trend and how great it looks on women over 50. 

4. Glazed Locks

A photo of Meryl Streep wearing brown glasses, ball-drop earrings and a dark green blouse
Photo by Vittorio Zunino Celotto/Getty Images

“Glossing gray/white hair will help get rid of yellow and brassy tones that can make gray/white look dull and instead, keep it bright and shiny,” explains O’Connor. We love DP HUE’s Glossy Glaze to achieve this look. 

5. Pump up the Volume

A photo of Jennifer Lopez wearing a black dress rocking a super volumized blowout hairstyle
Photo by Theo Wargo/Getty Images

Of course we couldn’t make this list without adding Jennifer Lopez to it. She’s the queen of rocking a super volumized blowout that adds instant glamour to her look. “Having a blowout that has lots of body and volume can help long hair appear fuller since sometimes length can weigh hair down,” says O’Connor. 

6. Long Layers

A photo of Angela Bassett with a long layered hairstyle and wearing a purple dress
Photo by Mike Coppola/Getty Images

“Layers with long hair will help to give more body and volume,” says O’Connor. Angela Bassett is a perfect example of rocking this look, making her look about 40 years younger than she actually is on a regular basis. 

7. Face Framing Layers

A photo of Jennifer Aniston with a face-framing layer hairstyle
Photo by Mike Windle/Getty Images

Who knew “the Rachel” haircut would still be relevant years later? Jennifer Aniston still rocks face-framing layers to “ help to soften around the face and add movement to a long haircut,” says O’Connor

8. Keratin Treatment

A photo of Andie MacDowell with a smokey eye makeup and red lip look wearing a black dress and a pearl necklace
Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images

“Gray hair is naturally coarser, so if you feel like your long hair gets frizzy and bounces up a few inches than it’s normal length with a blow out, you can do a keratin treatment to tame it down and make it look smooth and shiny,” says O’Connor. We also love KERATHERAPY’S Keratin-Infused Moisture Shampoo to complement the treatment. 

9. Extensions

A photo of Halle Berry with dark blonde highlight extentions wearing a black coat with white stripes and gold chain necklace
Photo by Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images

“Whether it’s for added volume due to hair loss or length, keratin bonds are a great way to enhance the hair but keeping the look natural and diverse,” says O’Connor. Oftentimes people think of extensions as a way to make hair longer, but they work to change up and create any hair look. 

10. Side Part Magic

A photo of Lucy Liu wearing a pink and green floral dress
Photo by Matt Winkelmeyer/Getty Images

Ummm did you know Lucy Liu is 54 years old in this picture? The side part is back and Liu shows that rocking this trend at any age creates an instantly glamorous and chic appearance. 

11. A Bronde Moment

A photo of Vanessa Williams wearing a pink dress with a bronde hair color
Photo by Cindy Ord/Getty Images

As I’m seeing these photos, I’m wondering why women over 50 ever chopped off their hair and reached for the hot rollers in the past. Vanessa Williams rocking this bronde hair color makes her blue eyes sparkle, and makes her skin appear brighter. 

12. Loose Waves

A photo of Salma Hayek with loose wave hairstyle wearing a blue dress
Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images

Having a relaxed wave style gives you that “just got out of bed” messy tousled look that still looks put together. Salma Hayek, 56, is the queen of rocking this look. Subtle chocolate highlights help create dimension in the look. 

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About the author
Brittany Leitner
Brittany is an award winning beauty, health, and lifestyle writer and author of the poetry book "23 Emotions." She has eight years of experience writing for brands like Elite Daily, The. Dr. Oz Show, Shape, Stylecaster, Bustle, and more.
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Article Last Updated August 29, 2023 12:00 AM