Q. Hi, I’m a lady who usually scans your articles to see if they might be of interest to me. I read your recent article in the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette on “Seven Ways to Improve Your Silhouette as You Age” and found it interesting. After reading it, I wondered if there was anyone (including you) who could write such a simple and concise article as this one about mature woman. I am an 80 year old, petite, slightly overweight woman who could really use this type of guidance. Thanks.
Democrat-Gazette Reader Anonymous
A. While this is certainly a departure from my usual men’s dress guide column, and the focus here will probably be a little different, some of the same elements exist for both sexes. Many of us want to avoid looking heavy. So silhouette slimming tricks are useful to understand.
Something as simple as wearing a belt can accentuate weight distribution you don’t want to see. If the belt draws attention to a woman’s belly, she would be wise to come up with some method to conceal the belt line rather than accentuate it. One way is to wear shirts open, thus covering the waist. A more subtle camouflage method is to add a jacket or sweater layer on top. All are simple and effective.
But the belly isn’t the only problem area. While you can’t eliminate all problems as you suggest, there are basic principles to looking your best and improving your silhouette as you mature.
- Wear dark colors (and neutrals) to make you look taller and slimmer.
- Wearing similar colors from top to bottom elongates the silhouette.
- Choose vertical stripes and/or ribs rather than horizontal lines to draw the eye up and down.
- Adding a long chain/necklace or scarf further elongates your silhouette.
- Wear clothes that fit you well, that are neither too big and baggy, nor too tight and tight. Tailor your clothes to fit you now. Don’t wear things that “used to fit you” if you are now a different size.
If the occasion is not too formal, if the setting is more social than business and if you feel relaxed in your surroundings, you can experiment with more colorful and slightly eclectic clothes and accessories. When you want to look sophisticated, some classic pieces instantly improve your image: high-quality, well-tailored dark trousers, a navy or black blazer, patterned jackets, clean cotton button-down shirts, silk blouses, knit polo shirts, dark jeans, leather shoes with low current.
As women consider what’s slimming, it’s also important to consider what looks appropriate overall. Wearing appropriate or inappropriate clothing shows a person’s good judgment to the world. . . or lack thereof. Unfortunately, and as unfair as it is, dressing in an age-inappropriate manner is a bigger mistake for women than it is for men. Poor clothing choices for a man are often seen as simply a sign that he “just doesn’t care about clothes.” But when a woman wears something that’s “too young” for her, it seems to suggest that she’s emphasizing the sensual aspect of her clothes—rather than a professional approach.
Here are some guidelines to keep in mind.
- Avoid clothes that look like you’re trying too hard to look young, such as t-shirts with slogans, large logos, and sporty casual wear.
- If you’re going to make a slight mistake, overdress instead of underdress.
- It’s better to have a small number of well-made, classic pieces that will last for years than a wardrobe full of eye-catching, trendy items.
- Avoid low-cut tops that expose too much cleavage. While this look can work for young women in some social settings, it should be avoided otherwise. Leave no more than two buttons open on a shirt.
- Don’t wear ripped, ripped or frayed pants, even for casual outfits. This style should definitely be avoided by mature women.
Obviously, I think clothing can have a positive or negative effect on both men and women. The range of what a woman looks good in is much wider and more complex than for men. . . but what is problematic is often similar.
Please send your questions and comments about your men’s dresses and looks to MALE CALL: [email protected]