Advanced search

Whether you’re a beauty novice or a confirmed fashionista, this topic is for consulting Mumsnetters on all things style-related. Plus, check out our Swears By page for the inside track on the next Mumsnet must-have.

Style rules for 40 year olds

(65 Posts)
sowhatusernameisnttaken Mon 26-Jun-17 09:54:40

When I turned 30 I imposed a few new style rules on myself in the hope I would start looking and dressing better. Now I'm soon to be turning 40 I'm thinking what my new ones should be. What are/were yours as you approach/when you turned 40?

Hoppinggreen Mon 26-Jun-17 09:56:12

Mainly to stop caring what other people thought!
If I think I look good then that's enough for me

changingShorts Mon 26-Jun-17 09:58:12

Same as before 40 but with less giving a shit about "rules".

ImADingleDangleScarecrow Mon 26-Jun-17 10:00:42

What were the rules you applied when you turned 30? The only 'rules' I can possibly think of is wear what suits you and wear things you like.

Lottapianos Mon 26-Jun-17 10:01:00

Buy clothes that you enjoy and that make you feel good, not what you think you 'should' be wearing because you're 40

Pay no attention to anyone who tells you that you can no longer wear denim shorts / mini skirts / bright lipstick / anything you fancy

sowhatusernameisnttaken Mon 26-Jun-17 10:04:22

One was no sweatshirt/hooded tops or sports trainers for everyday wear.

sowhatusernameisnttaken Mon 26-Jun-17 10:06:11

My ones in my late 30's have been no cheap high street fast fashions (from the likes of new look and Dorothy Perkins) this has resulted in hopefully a slightly more grown up, better quality wardrobe.

5LiveSportsExtra Mon 26-Jun-17 10:12:09

I think having a few better quality things in your wardrobe means you can get away with teaming up with some poorer quality stuff. I'm 44 and it has never occurred to me not to wear a hoodie though, mine are useful pieces of clothing.

FlorisApple Mon 26-Jun-17 10:18:06

My main, personal one was to give up wearing black. I had a whole wardrobe of it, but after having my first baby at 38 and being permanently sleep deprived, I decided that black made me look particularly haggard. I've stuck to it and introduced more colour and I think it's better. I'm not grey yet, but my hair is slowly draining of colour and so is my face: black just drains me.

Just recently, at 42, I've decided to concentrate more on fabric than shape. I am trying to only buy really nice, natural fabrics. I've realised that once you forget all the stuff about showing off your figure, you can instead focus on getting beautiful fabrics. As my waist thickens a bit, and I have a flabby tummy after two c-sections, I'm trying not to worry about my body as much, and instead get beautiful materials.

InigoTaran Mon 26-Jun-17 10:20:43

Wear what suits your body shape, invest in classics and get your colours done, makes such a difference!

whydoesitalwayshappentome Mon 26-Jun-17 10:21:07

I have never had any rules either before 40 or after 40. I wear what I like and what feels good and I really do not care what others think.

Hadenoughtoday01 Mon 26-Jun-17 10:23:08

Probably to ditch rules! I've never had any and am always praised for looking out together; when you have rules you rule out experimentation- and without that how can you have any fun?

Hadenoughtoday01 Mon 26-Jun-17 10:26:15

Sorry I meant put together and I think rather than rules about clothes - look after your health and wellbeing - from within. Then the rest will follow...
I mean eat well, exercise etc.

KoalaDownUnder Mon 26-Jun-17 10:29:40

Like a couple of other posters, my only new rule is to buy fewer items of better quality.

There are some cheaper shops I just don't go into anymore, which I would have a few years ago. I just don't feel as if I can 'get away with' cheapie items like I did in my 20s and 30s.

Truckingalong Mon 26-Jun-17 10:31:03

Why no hoodies and trainers? Some of them are gorgeous and can look really youthful. Why do you think 40 should spell the introduction of rules? Maybe pick a style that resonates most with you or you aspire to (grungy, expensive, boho, preppy etc) and get busy searching on here, Google, Pinterest etc.

sowhatusernameisnttaken Mon 26-Jun-17 10:48:49

It's not about 40 spelling an introduction of new rules it's about looking the best I can.
Personally I feel hoodie and trainers doesn't do it for me hence that self imposed rule for myself.

sowhatusernameisnttaken Mon 26-Jun-17 10:49:58

Oh yes no longer wearing black is one I've worked on hard over the past couple of year. It's all I ever used to wear but as I get older I just can't pull it off anymore (not sure if I ever did but certainly not now!)

echt Mon 26-Jun-17 10:53:26

One was no sweatshirt/hooded tops or sports trainers for everyday wear.

I'm 62 and have never done this. But it's been my rule. Fuck everyone else's.

Floisme Mon 26-Jun-17 12:08:48

I'm a big believer in reviewing your style as you get older. Let's face it, your looks change. But what I don't believe in, are rules based on age because 40 year olds don't all look the same. I think you have to look hard at yourself in the mirror, try and spot how your body's changing, watch other people for ideas and then just go out and try different things.

I also think that, in order to get it right, you have to be prepared to get it wrong sometimes. For that reason, I'm not in favour of rushing out to invest in quality pieces because it can make you risk averse. I think it's better to experiment, make mistakes and save the investment buys for when you've worked it out.

Anyway for what it's worth, I was another who gave up black in my 40s because I finally twigged, it made me look like crap.

sowhatusernameisnttaken Mon 26-Jun-17 12:18:10

Ok, I realise the title of my thread isn't quite what I mean. I mean self imposed style lessons you're following based on what you've learnt. Not about dressing for others or following a strict set of rules, just what lessons have you learnt are taking into your 40's.

Doobigetta Mon 26-Jun-17 14:44:20

Not "rules" as such (poor flamed OP- I know what you mean!), but I do think more carefully these days about what image I want to put across and whether my outfit is helping or contradicting. So, for example, for a night out with colleagues I wouldn't wear anything too obviously sexy. Not because I'm too old and scared of looking desperate, but because I don't need or particularly want male colleagues to think of me as sexy. It's having enough control and judgement to know that just because you CAN do something, just because it looks good and no-one has any right to judge you, some things will further your own cause better than others. It's being canny enough to understand the "rules" and play them to your own advantage, not get swept along by someone else's.

hiccupgirl Mon 26-Jun-17 14:48:33

I don't do rules for any particular age but in my 40s I have definitely embraced the fact that I love colour and patterns. I am tending to buy more quality items than previously.

I wouldn't see turning 40 as a massive hurdle that you have to change your style for though. You can just carry on wearing what you like.

Floisme Mon 26-Jun-17 15:56:44

It certainly wasn't my intention to flame. I still say that, apart from giving up black, I did very little different at 40 because at that stage of my life, I still looked much the same as I had before. It was the menopause that was the game changer for me.

Filiboom Mon 26-Jun-17 15:59:17

I've actually reintroduced black as I realised it does quite suit me. In my 30s I gradually stopped wearing it as I kept hearing of others who were doing that and thought as I got older I should do the same. But actually, I do look good in it, particularly when I have strong lips. And lipstick is the other thing I've been embracing in my 40s.

So really, I'm the same as most others - I've got more confident in my style and happier to go with what suits me rather than what I think I should wear/won't make make me stand out.

More practically, I wear trousers and flat shoes a lot more often compared to skirts and heels, but that's as much because I want to be able to walk easily and I'm fed up of tights!

RickOShay Mon 26-Jun-17 16:02:17

I want more black. It was just about the only colour I wore when I was young, stopped wearing it, now want it back again, don't know if it suits me or not. It's a bit like smoking I think, I will always be a smoker, even though I have given up, I will always love black, even if I look shit in it and don't wear it any more grin

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, watch threads, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now »

Already registered? Log in with: