Top 30 Fashion Trends That Might be Making You Look Older


| LAST UPDATE 10/17/2021

By Scarlett Adler

Most teenagers try on outfits that make them appear older. However, all that changes after a certain age, and suddenly, you find yourself doing anything to look younger. Well, some fashion trends might be holding you back in that department. Take a look at the styles that could be making you look older...

Big Hair Do's Are a Big No

Today, many are under the impression that volumized hair is a good thing. A New York City salon owner said, “Too often, a mature client thinks she must have a height” to The List. However, the line between a hot hairstyle and a hot mess is relatively thin when it comes to much volume.

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Ron Galella / Contributor via Getty Images

The owner further explained, “Teased-up hair can make anyone look older. Volume is different and can look modern and elegant.” So, it is better to invest in a volumizing shampoo and similar products for improving your hair’s quality than overuse hairspray, as overly teased hair might unintentionally, yet quickly, age a person.

Long Hair Might Weigh You Down

Some women believe that overgrowing their hair may help them hide the rest of their imperfections. But even if they succeed in masking their body-based insecurities, they end up with other side effects in most cases. So, instead of appearing youthful, they end up adding several years to their age.

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Celebrity hairstylist Mitch Stone told The List, “Too long always ages a woman. I’m not talking past your shoulders long, but cat lady long (not to be confused with Cat Woman).” To be more exact, Stone classified anything past one’s ribs as “cat lady long.” His great tip? Opt for a longer bob hairstyle that doesn’t weigh you down.

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Matching Your Lipstick to Your Outfit

It happens more often than it should, but many are guilty of matching their lipstick color to their outfit. In this sense, an excellent example is offsetting a boring outfit with a pop of red lipstick. However, there are certain limits when it comes to matching outfits and lip colors, as the wrong combo might make someone look much older.

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Have you ever heard of the “mom-style” or trends whose thriving days are long gone? Well, many would say that overly coordinating an outfit with the lip color is a typical example of it. For instance, wearing a bubblegum pink sweater and a matching bubblegum pink lipstick might add several years to one’s age.

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Jeggings Are Still Not Jeans

Nowadays, many women tend to pick out jeggings as a two in one solution for their outfits. As some would say, you can get jeggings’ comfort and the appearance or elegance of jeans. However, this particular style of pants usually doesn’t bring the ‘promised benefits,’ but may also negatively affect a youthful appearance.

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Larry Marano via Getty Images

The obvious, and a bit painful truth, is that jeggings are not jeans. A good pair of jeans can contribute to one’s figure by properly shaping the body and flattering one’s figure. Jeggings’ thin material, on the other hand, tends to show every lump and bump or imperfection on one’s body, especially the ones that come with age.

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Put the Self-Tanner Down

Most individuals perceive sunrays as harmful, as they usually tend to damage one’s skin by creating face lines, a leathery feeling, or even deep wrinkles. Even more, tanning has proven to age the skin more rapidly. That’s why some women decide to use a fake tanner, as "the perfect substitution for the sun."

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Steve Granitz / Contributor via Getty Images

Fake tanners might not ruin one’s skin. But even so, they might ruin a perfectly good outfit or a youthful look. In most cases, an unnatural, dark shade tan draws attention to one’s face imperfections. What’s more, it’s quite tricky to match the fake tanner to one’s skin without turning into an Oompa Loompa orange hue.

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The Inferior Jersey Dress

Many women favor typical jersey dresses, mostly because of their comfort or affordable price. The reason for this trend is quite apparent; everyone loves a convenient T-shirt, so why not extend the material and turn the design into a full-length, complete look? Even so, this is still a trend you want to stay away from.

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David Ryan via Flickr

Undoubtedly, the cotton fabric is comfortable, but it may also cling to each imperfection or bunch in every wrong place, highlighting one’s insecurities or adding to their age. What’s more, the lightweight quality material easily wrinkles, so it can look tacky. After all, nightgowns are for home wear.

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Fully Into the Pastels

Nowadays, pastels are such a trend that individuals often opt for the head-to-toe pastel look. However, a full monochromatic outfit can be quite tricky, as we usually correlate it to older people. More exactly, as we age, our skin tones often fade, so the lighter skin pairs well with the pastel hue.

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JB Lacroix / Contributor via Getty Images

This is the main reason why a pastel look may wash out one’s youthfulness and make a person appear older than he/she is. A better option is to match a pastel piece with a contrasting pair of jeans or a skirt. Also, you can choose neutrals such as beige or off-white rather than baby pink or menthol green.

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Be Cautious With Floor-Length Skirts

Our long list of fashion trends that might make you look older would not be complete without the long, floor-length skirts. Today, many women are wearing the trend properly, whereas some of them opt for longer hemlines but have a completely wrong outfit idea. So, if you go for these skirts, proceed with caution.

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Stefania D'Alessandro / Contributor via Getty Images

Floor-length skirts hide our legs or most of the insecurities of older women. However, they cover just about one's entire figure. So, if you decide on such a design, it is best to pair it off with a structured, tight top. After all, relaxed-fitting tops can quickly transfer your fashionable long hemline to a frumpy look.

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The Harmful Cakey Makeup Look

Imperfections and sun damage often surface on older people’s skin, which is especially noticeable on one’s face. For this reason, some women tend to overdo their makeup, all with the purpose of appearing younger. But the cakey, powdery makeup usually has the opposite effect, as it can add several years to one’s age.

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Packing a ton of makeup, including heavy foundation and overdrawn brows, almost immediately makes one, even young women with no skin damage, appear older. So, a better solution is to add cream foundations, tinted moisturizers, or even a little powder in the critical areas instead of all over one’s face.

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Over Covering the Neck Area

Since the skin on one's neck loosens with age, many try to 'cover it up,'. Some women choose to apply makeup, and others embrace a sweater or t-shirt with a turtle-neck. Yet, this is not always the best solution, as over covering the area may initiate a contra effect or make you appear older.

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Theo Wargo / Staff via Getty Images

Loosened skin is a natural occurrence with age, which is probably the main reason why older women opt for the turtlenecks. However, this fashion choice can draw additional attention to the area, especially if it is too tight or in the dark, contrasting color to one’s faded or pale skin.

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The Ever-Lasting Hairstyle

Changing your hairstyle is a big step for risk-averse individuals. That’s why many women end up with the same look for decades, especially if they believe that they have found the perfect styling for their head shape. However, there is nothing worse than outdated trends. Times change, we change, and so should our hair.

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JB Lacroix / Contributor via Getty Images

Similar to fashion, hair has evolved dramatically. It may be challenging to part with your signature look, but it is good to switch it up occasionally. According to the general rule of thumb, "If a person’s hair matches a photo of them from 5 to 10 years ago, chances are they are long overdue for an upgrade."

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Dark Lipsticks’ Bad Mark

Once in a while, a dark lip may be the perfect addition to an outfit, especially when one feels moody or wants to match the fall/winter season. Even more, dark lipstick appears classy and luxurious. However, in some cases, it might unintentionally add several years to one’s age. Let’s see why that is so.

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With age, the lips tend to become thinner, paler, and more prone to drying. So, a dark lipstick will not only over accentuate the strong lines along with signs of aging but also highlight the crevice on one’s lips. To avoid additionally pronouncing your thinner lips, it is always better to go for neutral tones.

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Overly Matched Jewelry or Accessories

In one instance, Chanel famously advised women, “Before you leave the house, look in the mirror and take one thing off.” As Coco Chanel is an expert in the fashion field, including jewelry, it is pretty safe to follow her advice. The question is, “Why do matchy-matchy jewelry adds years to one’s life?”

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@nerdsquared via Instagram

Similar to statement pieces, overly matched jewelry tends to weigh one down. So, instead of sticking to this outdated trend of wearing a bubble necklace along with a set of matching earrings and a bracelet, you should opt for a more varied look. After all, it is better to separate the matching sets into different outfits.

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Outdated Floral Patterns

Flowers are great in nature, as they are a refreshing and elegant addition for a nice walk outside. However, many individuals and fashion magazines see floral patterns as an outdated trend. So, it would be best if you avoided it when it comes to shopping at your local department store.

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James Devaney / Contributor via Getty Images

The line between fun and gaudy is relatively thin, especially when it comes to larger floral patterns. So, flower design lovers can achieve a better and younger look by combining smaller patterns into their outfits. It is still arguably better to substitute the animal prints and polka dot prints with more abstract or geometric patterns.

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Not Covering the Undergarments

Today, we have many options to cover the undergarments, in other words, to add a class or eventually work out any outfit. Even Kim Kardashian is now selling “high-end” undergarments, such as one-legged stockings and skin-toned fashion tapes, as the ill-fitting and exposed undergarments combo is a thing from the past.

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320828282 via Flickr

Now, more than ever, we have no excuse for unintentionally exposing our underwear. What’s more, fashion experts state that ill-fitting undergarments can create unsightly lines, even under the best outfit. Fortunately, you can tuck the straps away or get a proper, yet quick measurement at any of your local lingerie stores.

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Long-Sleeved Shirt’s Double Effect

Most people are self-conscious about at least one of their body parts. And as individuals age, they seem to be more concerned about the area on the upper arms. More exactly, this area is problematic because of the hanging, sagging skin that tends to wave around. That’s why many people find it most comfortable to cover up the area.

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@lulaoreastefanielkochapski via Instagram

However, this isn't always the answer. Sometimes, it’s better to show the arm imperfections on the beach than draw additional, undesired attention by showing up with long sleeves. So, even though it seems like a perfect solution, overly covering your body may sometimes achieve the opposite.

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The Wrong Pair of Tights

Several years back, it was considered crazy to leave the house wearing a skirt or a dress without a pair of tights. However, times have changed, and the tan, shiny pantyhose are a thing from the past. The undergarments might additionally age a person instead of making the skin look younger.

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ptxdview via Flickr

In one instance, stylist Roxie Nafousi told a fashion blog, “I know it is a bit controversial as they are a huge staple of most women’s wardrobes, but I find tights really aging.” The fashion industry mainly considers tights as an outdated trend. And it’s always better to stick with opaque styles and dark shades.

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The Small, Stiff Handbag

Back in the day, it was quite an achievement to own a pocketbook. However, times have changed. Today, calling one of your accessories a pocketbook, including a purse or a handbag, immediately adds several years to your trendy accessory, as well as you as the one wearing it.

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@styledby_jamielewis via Instagram

Yet, the most crucial issue is choosing an up-to-date, trendy bag design. Most fashion influencers and trendsetters consider the small, structured, leather bag as the “grandma purse”, or one that adds several years to one’s age. A great substitution to this seemingly chic design would be a slouchier style, or more relaxed bag.

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The Eye-Catching Brooches

Without a doubt, brooches have been and probably will remain as remarkable pieces that you can pass down to generations. Still, this doesn’t mean that you should wear the brooch, as it is an old-fashioned outfit statement. Instead, it’s better to keep it in a tucked away jewelry box, or return it to the vintage store.

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@dear_handmade via Instagram

Time went by since brooches were fashionable pieces. Today, as unfortunate as it may seem to some, fashion experts find brooches gaudy, old, and out of place. In other words, skipping the glitz of a brooch will eventually improve your outfit or help you prevent a fashion faux. Well, at least for everyday activities.

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Unique High Water Pants or Capris

Most people tend to skip displaying their legs as they become older. However, those same individuals have to find a solution for the warmer summer days. As shorts tend to expose their insecurities, making them feel uncomfortable and self-conscious, they usually turn to high water pants or alternatively, capris.

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Fred Clark Jr via Flickr

However, this particular style of pants is usually cut off at the mid-calf, making the wearer’s legs appear shorter and heavier. Even more, high water pants or capris are likely to add several years to one’s age. A better option is to choose airier culotte pants or a skirt that cuts off at the mid-calf.

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Skipping a Good Pair of Jeans

Most of all, teenagers tend to wear a good pair of jeans. And as most people associate this clothing piece with a youthful look, many seem to believe that it is unacceptable for women to wear jeans as women age. However, this is neither a supported fact nor a fashion rule.

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Edward Berthelot / Contributor via Getty Images

A good pair of jeans is suitable for people of all ages, especially if the fit accentuates the best parts of one’s figure. Undeniably, it isn’t easy to find a flattering model for your body. However, once you do, the denim pants can refresh any of your outfits, simultaneously making you appear younger.

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Wearing Unflattering Colors

Today, we get to choose from a wide range of clothing colors online, as well as, in our local stores. But even though something looks good on another person, it doesn’t mean that the color is intended for us as well. More exactly, each color is flattering to a range of skin tones.

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@kellimich927 via Instagram

The rule of thumb states that warmer colors, such as peaches, corals, reds, and golds, look best on people with warmer skin tones or quickly get tan in the sun. On the other hand, cooler tones, such as blues and greens, fit individuals with cool skin tones or the ones prone to getting sunburnt.

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The Heavy Tweed Fabric

There were times when the fashion industry considered tweed as the right fabric for clothing pieces. But even then, people who wanted to appear younger skipped this heavy material, as it added several years to their age. Today, we find an outdated trend, so there is no one reason to add it to your wardrobe.

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Marc Piasecki / Contributor via Getty Images

Fortunately, there is a wide range of trendy, flattering fabrics to achieve the menswear look. For instance, you can achieve a comfortable yet flattering look by going for the suit fabrics in patterns like pinstripes or windowpanes instead of the thick, tweed fabric. Well, at least if you want to appear younger.

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Excessive Use of Blush

For decades now, blush has been the favorite makeup choice among women. More exactly, they have been using it to achieve a glowing, youthful look. Undeniably, adding a bit of blush on the cheeks’ apples can immediately freshen up the look. However, anything more than enough can lead to a makeup catastrophe.

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Ron Galella / Contributor via Getty Images

Considering that excessive use of blush is an outdated trend, adding too much blush can add several years to your age. The key point is to add just enough blush to color your cheeks a bit, but not wholly pink. After all, this is a good way to get a nice youthful look.

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Hopping On All Trends

Today, more than ever, the trends are changing. But even though many trends seem enticing, they are not appropriate for people of all ages or body types. So, a fashion mistake in this sense would be to try out each trend you have seen on Instagram or Pinterest, without regards to your style.

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@jordynwoods via Instagram

The question is, ‘How can sticking too much to the current trend of the time make you appear older?’ Well, most teenagers are trying to fit in the crowd. So, anyone above that age would appear as ‘trying too hard'. Therefore, it kind of looks ridiculous and can make you look a bit older.

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Wearing Outdated Eyewear

Choosing a proper model of eyewear is essential for staying trendy and appearing youthful. People wear this type of accessory on the face, so it is the first thing we notice when meeting another person. And based on the kind of eyewear, most people tend to form an opinion regarding the wearer.

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Larry Marano / Contributor via Getty Images

That’s why wearing outdated eyewear is one of the most obvious and fastest ways to age a person’s face. The rule of thumb states that if you have worn the same framed glasses for a few years, it’s time to upgrade your style. Similar to your wardrobe, you should change your glasses occasionally.

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It's the Thin Eyebrows for Me

Back in the day, it was quite trendy to over-pluck and strangely shape your brows, all with the purpose to achieve the signature raised eyebrow look or closely resembled St. Louis’ Gateway Arch. However, time went by, and hopefully, so will this phenomenon. Today, celebrities have long forgotten the early 2000s look, and so should you.

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The main reason why over-plucking your brows might make you appear older is that the trend dates back to two decades ago. Even more, it might make you look peculiar and out-of-style. After all, wearing an out of date, the 20-year-old trend will probably add those extra years to your age number.

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Overdoing Dark Eyeliner

It is never acceptable to lay things on the thick side. Well, except when it comes to the truth. However, many women still tend to go for the overdone eyeliner look. Time went by, and trends have changed. Today, more than ever, makeup artists highlight the importance of minimalism for a youthful and discreet look.

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According to makeup experts, thick eyeliner can weigh down the face, even if you're a youngster. What’s more, heavy makeup can quickly get stuck and over accentuate the wrinkles, crevices, and fine lines around one’s eyes, as it smudges throughout the day. So, they advise finding a better way to cover up these areas.

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Large and Gaudy Jewelry Is A Don’t

Have you ever thought of the origin of the term statement piece? As obvious as it sounds, these fashion pieces aim to make a statement. Yet, it is important what kind of message you want to transfer. When it comes to shopping at a jewelry store, choosing a statement necklace or a louder piece can be tricky.

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Big, intricate costume jewelry and relative’s hand-me-downs can instantly add several years to one’s age. So, instead of adding to your natural beauty with discreet details, you might end up weighing yourself down with gaudy jewelry. The better option for a more youthful look is to substitute your statement pieces with simple, more stylish ones.

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Completely Over-Sized Outfit

Nowadays, looser-fitting clothing has very much come back in style. However, like any other trend, there is a right and a wrong way to wear this trend. For instance, older people who decide to go baggier with their fit of clothing usually end up picking up that big, tent-like dress hanging in one’s favorite store.

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However, a head-to-toe oversized outfit usually adds several years to one’s age, as it doesn’t accentuate the body figure, and rarely seems fashionable. According to the fashion society, it is always better to combine a loose piece of clothing with a tight pair of pants or a more structured top to point up one’s body.

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