A Carmel Stylist View: What is Age Appropriate Clothing?

As a Carmel stylist, I am often asked about whether something is “age appropriate.” Most of the time I ask the person how they feel in it. Does it feel true to who you are today?

Identifying what is age-appropriate varies person to person. In short, “age appropriate” can’t be simply defined. Most of the time, your style shifts, matures and changes as you age, mature and change. What worked for you early in your career and in your life most of the time won’t do once you make it to the corner office or have a family of six, for instance.

Sometimes as we age, our style looks different because we are shopping for better quality items from brands we weren’t supporting in our 20s. As I’ve said many times, less is more. This applies to all areas of our lives, wardrobe included. If you aren’t already, give yourself permission to invest more in yourself later in life, including smart investing in a classic, quality wardrobe.

Here are my top tips for identifying what is age appropriate:

Carmel Stylist talks the dos and don'ts of age appropriate clothing1. Dress for Yourself First

It’s easy to be influenced by friends, family, and work associates. Everyone has their ideas of what they like to see you wear. But what do you want to wear? Give your style a few words and dress like it. Need help with your style words? As a professional Carmel stylist, I can help with that!

2. Dress for Your Life and Your Body Today

The things you gravitate towards later in life are not the things you pulled from the racks at age 25. You don’t want or need the same things as someone in their 20’s. However, you might own the same jeans or top or shoes as someone much younger. That’s okay. The key is in how you style those pieces versus how someone decades younger styles them. Be realistic about what works for you and how it looks on your body. Invest in pieces that increase your confidence.

3. Carmel Stylist Says to Keep Evolving Your Style

Holding onto what used to work is the biggest aging mistake I see. When we continue to wear our hair the same, same makeup, same clothing from 20 years ago, etc., we are aging ourselves faster than bad plastic surgery. When your style shifts with the times, you appear your most youthful. Many Carmel stylists will tell you that you cannot own pieces over 10 years old; however, I have pieces that are 15+ years old in my closet, and they still look great. Simply take the older pieces and style them with the newer parts of your wardrobe. This keeps your look fresh and balanced.

4. Letting Go Creates Space

It is okay to let go of things that served us well in the past whether they are a former haircut, a favorite jacket, or a signature lip color. We are never losing anything when we let go and look beyond what we have already done. Letting go allows new (and perhaps better) to come in.

In the next blog, we will discuss some tips to help you decide if an outfit is appropriate for you!

Keep it sassy, Indy.

Beth Divine, MA, AICI-CIC