“Ashy tones are your biggest enemy as you get older,” says George Papanikolas, a colorist who works with actress Rachel McAdams. “Women tend to add pale highlights and go blonder to camouflage gray, but they end up looking washed out and older.”
“Age shouldnt influence hair length,” notes Mark Townsend, a Matrix celebrity stylist and Reese Witherspoons go-to hair guy. So no need to go short at a certain age. In fact, the mom cutear-length, overly layered (think Hillary Clinton or Suze Orman)adds years, according to the stylists we polled.
“Styling your hair back off your face can make you look 10 years older,” Cotton says. If you have short hair, style it so it frames your face. For longer hair, bangs are the way to go, according to San Diego salon owner Jet Rhys. “They hide signs of aging and instantly give you a youthful appearance,” she says, citing Goldie Hawn as an example of someone who knows the antiaging power of fringe.
Skin & body strategies
The real trick to a youthful complexion is exfoliation. “As you age, cell turnover slows, and removing the top layer of dead skin cells reveals the younger-looking skin beneath,” explains Jeannette Graf, MD, assistant clinical professor of dermatology at Mt. Sinai School of Medicine in New York City.
“Your hands can reveal your age even when your face doesnt,” says Spirit Demerson, an organic-beauty expert. Keep them gorgeous with a cream that contains sunscreen and ingredients to improve texture; try Ole Henriksen Hands Forward SPF 15 ($28).
Dermatologists have a ton of ways to take off the yearsand many are less expensive and less invasive than you might think. For example, “Prescription-strength retinoids are proven to boost collagen production and diminish wrinkles,” according to Beverly Hills dermatologist Ilya Reyter, MD.
“Many women assume they need more makeup as they get older, but the less you put on the better you look,” says Poppy King, creator of Lipstick Queen. Adds makeup artist Petra Strand, “Id ban heavy base on anyone older than 25.” Try a tinted moisturizer instead.
“Stay away from too much powderit can accentuate wrinkles,” says Olivia Chantecaille, creative director of the Chantecaille beauty line. Cream eye shadow and blush formulas are “more flattering on mature skin,” according to makeup artist Jemma Kidd.
“Stop wearing browns; theyre doing nothing for you,” makeup artist Michael Marcus says. “A pop of color takes years off,” adds Sara Strand, of Pop Beauty, who suggests pink for cheeks and lavender or olive-gold for eyes.
Women older than 30 do go sleevelessand look darn good. (See Michelle Obama for proof.) To make sure your skin looks as great as your triceps, swap your regular body lotion for one with alpha hydroxy acids (AHAs), which gently exfoliate to reveal smoother skin. Try Dove Pro-Age Beauty Body Lotion ($5.99).