From the oldest working model, Carmen Dell'Orefice, gracing the catwalk at New York Fashion Week at 81, to M&S advertising campaigns starring Twiggy and the gracefully grey-haired Yasmina Rossi, there's never been a more glamorous time to be over fifty.
Unfortunately the majority of us don't have stylists, make-up artists and soft lighting following us around everywhere and so we rely on tried and tested tips to help us shine in the autumn of our lives.
HuffPost blogger Barbara Hannah Grufferman, author of "The Best of Everything After 50", has pulled together some of the most common beauty blunders among women over 50 and simple things solutions:
#1 Clothes That Are Too Loose And Baggy
In an attempt to hide or cover up our bodies, especially if we've packed on a few post-menopausal pounds, we end up looking heavier. No matter what our size, a woman over 50 should have the right fit--not tight, but a fit that defines the waist. Best way to do that? Make a great tailor your new best friend.
#2 Trying To Dress 'Young' Instead Of 'Great'
We live in a world that's constantly shouting in our ears, "Young is better!" ... but don't listen! We've earned every crow's foot we have, and buying into that nonsense is the perfect recipe for a fashion fail. In Barbara Hannah Grufferman's book, "The Best of Everything After 50," she interviewed Diane von Furstenberg, who said the key to looking great is to be comfortable. If you're tugging at your too-short skirt you'll be more focused on covering your thighs than on what you should be engaged in. There are no style rules, but there are definite guidelines, the most important one being this: Just because you're over 50 doesn't mean you have dress like a frump. Update your wardrobe with a few essential basics and build from there.
#3 Wearing The Wrong Bra
The majority of American women wear the wrong bra size, and it shows. We just don't take the time to get properly fitted by an expert. The right bra can make all the difference in how your clothes fit, and how you look in them. Make sure to get a few different ones for specific clothes, including one specifically for wearing under a t-shirt or other smooth shirts, and buy them in colors that are close to your own skin color for wearing under white or light-colored tops.
#4 Not Starting A Retinol Product Soon Enough
There are no magic amulets for reversing skin damage, but products such as Retin-A are as close as you can get. They work to exfoliate the skin while you sleep, and help build collagen. (Using a retinol product on the skin makes it even more sensitive to the sun, so a product with an SPF of at least 40 is essential).
#5 Applying Too Much Makeup In An Attempt To 'Cover Up'
Women over 50 often try to cover everything up by applying too much concealer, foundation, blush, everything. Foundation should be applied very sparingly, and only then will you be able to see if concealer is even necessary. Keep it light, with pinkish tones for the lips, and rosy for the cheeks. Try a waterproof eyeliner and very lightly follow the last line, top and bottom. A lighter touch is key to a fresh, pretty face.
#6 Going With 'Single Process' To Cover The Gray
Using the single process approach to covering gray can create a single block of color, very often either too light or too dark, without any contrast. This can drain the face and be aging. Consider highlights along with your natural color (including the gray), or mixing highlights with the single process.
#7 Still Trying To 'Diet' To Lose Weight
Diets don't work. Eating, and eating often, does. Diets that focus on a specific category of food (protein, for example) aren't sustainable. Eating small meals consisting of whole grains, lean proteins, dark leafy greens and lots of water go a long way in keeping hunger at bay, and the pounds off.
Barbara Hannah Grufferman is the President of Best of Everything Media, Inc., author of "The Best of Everything After 50", a guide to positive aging, and is at work on her second book, "Fifty Rules: What Every Woman Needs to Know Before Turning 50" which will be published in late 2012. Barbara is the Chief Pundit at FOF, one of the largest websites for women over 45. She can also be found on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.
For more fashion tips for older women, check out our favourite beauty blogs below...
Chic At Any Age
"I started this blog in 2009 as I see no reason why we should not continue to enjoy fashion whatever age we are," writes Josephine of <a href="http://chicat50plus.blogspot.com/" target="_hplink">Chic at Any Age</a>. She hopes her blog will be "a useful resource on what works from underwear to special occasion dressing for more mature women."
<a href="http://www.mispapelicos.com/" target="_hplink">Mis Papelicos</a> is all about Sacramento, an English professor and a nutrition and diet expert in Andalucía, Spain (hence the bilingual captions). Her bi-weekly posts feature the funky and elegant ensembles she puts together, as well as other images that inspire her style.
<a href="http://www.greyfoxblog.com/" target="_hplink">Grey Fox</a> adds a male perspective to the post 50 fashion and style blog community. The site is dedicated to "a man's search for style in middle age." Recent posts include tips on "[keeping] the costs of style in control" and a roundup of stylish bald "grey foxes" in popular culture.
Don't be deterred by the name -- <a href="http://stylecrone.com/" target="_hplink">Style Crone</a> is a blog "dedicated to the older woman, in her most creative, outrageous, authentic, powerful, adventurous, funny, and proud era." Far from a crone, Judith writes, "choosing my outfits, which always included a hat, was a way to express myself creatively and as a form of meditation as I approached my day." Along with snapping pics of her outfits for her blog, she also owns a hat shop, sells vintage clothing and designs hats for chemotherapy patients.
Une Femme D'Un Certain Age
<a href="http://www.unefemme.net/" target="_hplink">Une Femme D'Un Certain Age</a> is a blog focused on "living a stylish, adventurous, balanced [and] delicious life after 50" -- with a francophile twist. Recent posts include a review of flattering skinny jeans for post 50s by Not Your Daughter's Jeans, and a reflection on being "the boss of what our age means" style-wise (spoiler: Une Femme believes it's important not to confuse trying to pretend you're 25 with looking "current").
Blogger Susan documents her quest to find fashion post 50 in <a href="http://flattering50.blogspot.com/" target="_hplink">Flattering 50</a>. "I'm doing my thinking publicly in my blog ... in the hopes that others might join in the conversation," she writes. With posts such as "Top 10 Dress Styles for Women Over 50" and "Swimsuits over 50: Where to Shop," it's hard not to chime in.
"Hip past 50 doesn't have to refer to surgery," blogger Joni quips on her blog, <a href="http://www.walkingcolors.blogspot.com/" target="_hplink">Walking Colors</a>. Sharing photos of her outfits with an online community allows her to "unleash the side of me I've been hiding for way too many years [and] receive support and encouragement...there is definitely a camaraderie here in these blogs that we all share," she writes.
Girls Of A Certain Age
Okay, so the "girls" <a href="http://www.nytimes.com/2012/05/31/fashion/kim-france-former-lucky-editor-turns-blogger.html" target="_hplink">Kim France is writing for haven't quite hit 50</a> -- but Kim herself was 48 when she left her post as editor in chief of <em>Lucky</em> magazine and turned her energies to <a href="http://www.girlofacertainage.com/" target="_hplink">Girls of a Certain Age</a>, a blog for "grown-ups who can't quite part with the notion that motorcycle boots, if styled properly, can make for a perfectly acceptable evening look." Its focus is primarily on shopping, though it also occasionally delves into pop culture.
Not Dead Yet Style
<em>"I am a fifty-something woman, wife, professional, auntie and crazy cat lady. Though pressured by society to recede gracefully, I prefer to burst out with a love of fashion and style. We are not dead yet, so let's enjoy every sandwich and gild the lilies."</em> That pretty much sums up the aim of Patti's <a href="http://notdeadyetstyle.blogspot.com/" target="_hplink">Not Dead Yet Style</a>. Her blog also features a weekly "Visible Monday," where readers are invited to share an image of themselves sporting an "outfit, accessory, piece of jewelry, cosmetic or other adornment" that makes them feel alive and confident.
Fashion After 50
<a href="http://www.fashionafter50.com/" target="_hplink">Fashion After 50</a> features fashion advice by category (bohemian, travel clothes, fabrics you love), a "fashion archetype quiz," dos and don'ts for fashion after 50 and opportunities to buy some of the blog's featured items.
"'Growing old gracefully' is an outdated concept. We prefer 'growing old with verve.' This blog documents our efforts to live up to that motto, in photos and essays," the <a href="http://idiosyncraticfashionistas.blogspot.com/" target="_hplink">Idiosyncratic Fashionistas </a>write. Sample post: an ode to fashion journalist and muse <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/08/07/lagerfeld-muse-anna-piaggi-dead_n_1751812.html?utm_hp_ref=fifty&ir=Fifty" target="_hplink">Anna Piaggi, who recently passed away at the age of 81</a>, featuring photos of some of her memorable ensembles.