32 Best Long Hairstyles For Women Over 40

Allow these sleek, sophisticated hairstyles to turn heads and do the talking for you.

Reviewed by Tuera A. Jacobs, Licenced Cosmetologist Tuera A. Jacobs Tuera A. JacobsLicenced Cosmetologist insta_icon
Written by , BTech Anjali Sayee BTech linkedin_icon Experience: 7 years
Edited by , BSc Shatabdi Bhattacharya BSc linkedin_icon Experience: 2.5 years
Fact-checked by , BA Anu Pallavi BA linkedin_icon

It is a misconception that there are no good long hairstyles for women over 40, and they can only style their hair in mom buns or low ponytails. So, if you are an older woman looking to spruce up your hairstyles, you have come to the right place. We have carefully curated a list of long hairstyles for women over 40 that don’t include a variation of the mom bun or the low ponytail!

As you age, you may notice that your long tresses aren’t as healthy as they once were. They become more prone to damage by harsh UV rays, styling products, chemical and coloring processes, tight hairstyles, and excessive product usage.

Older women also become a little more careful and less experimental with how they style their locks. Well, all that ends right now! You can flaunt some great hairstyles for your tresses without needing excessive hair care products or styling tools. They can make your hair look and feel better, too. And just because you are a little older and wiser doesn’t mean you can’t let your inner child experiment with new hairstyles.

Scroll down to learn how you can pick the right hairstyles and get some inspiration!

protip_icon Before You Get Started
  • Regular wash can be extremely drying for aging hair, so limit washing to twice a week. Use dry shampoo if you need to go out on non-wash days. This will absorb the grease and also give your hair volume.
  • To maintain strong and long hair that can tolerate styling, reduce heat styling and use of chemical hair dyes. Avoid tight hairstyles.
  • Invest in hair conditioning products and make hot oil massages a regular part of your routine.

Mom bun hairstyle
Image: Shutterstock

While the mom bun is a classic over 40s hairstyle, I’m not adding it to my list as it transcends all hairstyles and women of all ages are wearing it now.

Low pony hairstyle
Image: Shutterstock

I’m also not adding the low pony in my list as that is the go-to hairstyle for most women over 40 and I want this list to showcase different hairstyles.

So, what are you supposed to look for while picking hairstyles? Here are some pointers.

Things To Focus On

As you age, your hair becomes weak, so stay away from hairstyles that create tension or add pressure on your hair follicles like a tight high ponytail. Tight hairdos might also cause traction alopecia.

Try bangs! Side bangs, Side-swept bangs or a full frontal fringe is perfect for women over 40. They hide any wrinkles that form on the forehead. And if you have a round face or a heart-shaped face, then bangs will help thin down the face, giving it more structure.

Hairstyles with layers are best suited for women over 40. Layers make you look younger and add definition to your face and look good on any face shape, be it square, round, oval or an inverted triangle.

Without any further ado, here are the 32 best hairstyles for women over 40.

32 Best Long Hairstyles For Women Over 40

1. Demi Moore – Top Knot Bun

Image: Shutterstock

The ‘Ghost’ actress has always been known for her ageless beauty and grace. Sporting a chic look, the top knot bun adds the much-needed oomph to her style. Just like Demi Moore, if you also don’t wish to keep your femme-fatale persona aside, then this timeless and alluring look is for you.

2. Kate Hudson – Voluminous Curls With Side Part

Image: Shutterstock

Allow Kate Hudson to be your fashion inspiration and opt for voluminous curls with a subtle side part that will be ideal for all gatherings, from family dinners to casual brunch with girlfriends. The simple and modern hairstyle will add a girl-next-door charm to your look and ensure you look nothing less than a 90s rom-com protagonist!

3. Sandra Oh – Wavy High Ponytail

Image: Shutterstock

Sanda Oh teaches us how to add a grown-up twist to a classic girly hairdo. After all, women can embrace any look they want, and you can definitely bookmark this one for the playful holiday season.

4. Naomi Watts – Retro Curls

Image: Shutterstock

Step into the 60s era like Naomi Watts with retro curls hairstyle. The side-swept hair with full curls at the bottom perfectly encapsulates the vintage aesthetic.

5. Drew Barrymore – Sleek Half Updo

Image: Shutterstock

When in doubt, go minimalist! The sleek half updo sported by Drew Barrymore is a fail-proof hairstyle you can always rely on. Recreate the hairdo by neatly combing the strands, doing a subtle side part, and clipping the hair in the back. Voila! You are all sorted for future soirées or formal gatherings.

6. Michelle Yeoh – Simple And Elegant

Michelle Yeoh's simple and elegant hairstyle
Image: Shutterstock

Actress Michelle Yeoh looks stunning in this hairstyle. A low bun with simple side bangs looks classy and works well for any event or meeting.

7. Gabrielle Union – Straight Hair Never Looked Better

Gabrielle Union's straight hairstyle
Image: Shutterstock

If you have a round face, then this look is perfect for you. Poker straight hair with a middle parting frames your face while giving it a slim look. Add some color to add more flavor to the hairstyle. Add lighter shades near the bottom as that adds focus to the bottom of your face, making it look elongated.

8. Halle Berry – Bangs It Is Then!

Halle Berry with her bangs
Image: Shutterstock

Lightly feathered bangs with feathered ends, as seen on the beautiful Halle Berry, look amazing on women over 40. If you have an oval face, then definitely try this hairdo. The feathered bangs divert the focus to your eyes.

protip_icon Quick Tip
You can style the feathered bangs differently to freshen your hairstyle. Style them with a side parting and flipped-out ends. They also look great with lob hairstyles.

9. Helena Bonham Carter – Waves And Tendrils

Helena Bonham Carter with simple waves and tendrils haircut
Image: Shutterstock

We’ve all seen Helena Bonham Carter with some crazy hairdos, but she looks incredible in this hairstyle and you can too! If you have a slightly boxy face, this hairstyle is for you – simple waves with tendrils on the sides of your face.

10. Jennifer Aniston – Classic Jen

Jennifer Aniston's classic Jen look
Image: Shutterstock

I just had to add this classic Jennifer Aniston look. A slight side parting with two layers and some face-framing highlights will work wonders in making you look young. If you have a round face, try this hairstyle as the layers accentuate the lower half of your face, giving it more definition.

11. Jennifer Connelly – The Low Bun

Jennifer Connelly's low bun hairstyle
Image: Shutterstock

The classic low bun is an elegant hairstyle for women over 40. Pair it with some dark red lipstick, like Jennifer Connelly, and you are gold! This hairstyle is perfect for women with oval faces.

12. Julia Roberts – The Beehive

Julia Roberts' beehive hairstyle
Image: Shutterstock

The beehive! This hairstyle is a total stunner. The high volume at the top of your hair makes your face look slim and long. Add side bangs, like Julia Roberts, to bring attention to your eyes and mouth.

protip_icon Trivia
The beehive hairstyle will look great with face-framing bangs or curtain bangs with soft waves.

13. Marisa Tomei – A Vintage Feel

Marisa Tomei's vintage hairdo
Image: Shutterstock

This hairdo gives out a tad bit of a retro feel. Marisa Tomei looks beautiful in this slightly wavy blunt hairstyle. The side parting helps accentuate her cheeks.

14. Octavia Spencer – The Side Bun

Octavia Spencer's side bun hairdo
Image: Shutterstock

The low side bun with side-swept bangs looks super classy. If you have a formal party to go to, do try this look. If you have a round face and you think you won’t be able to pull this off, think again! The side-swept bangs help slim your face down while diverting focus to your eyes.

15. Rachel Weisz – The Curly High Pony

Rachel Weisz's curly high pony hairdo
Image: Shutterstock

If you have an oval face, try this look. The high pony with a puff in the front looks brilliant on Rachel Weisz, and can on you as well. The curls at the end add volume to your hair.

16. Sandra Bullock – Side-Swept Hair

Sandra Bullock's side-swept hairstyle
Image: Shutterstock

Side-swept hair is such a sophisticated look. It adds a mature glow to your face. The side parting and curls at the end bring the attention to the bottom half of your face. The slight highlights frame Sandra Bullock’s face perfectly.

17. Sofia Vergara – Middle Parting With Waves

Sofia Vergara's middle parting hairstyle with waves
Image: Shutterstock

This simple yet stunning hairstyle is a go-to for your daily schedule. The waves at the bottom bring the focus to the lower half of your face, making your jawline look slim. The middle parting makes your face appear slimmer near the cheeks.

18. Taraji P. Henson – Wavy Side-Sweep

Taraji P Henson's wavy side swept hairstyle
Image: Shutterstock

Taraji P Henson looks fantastic! Wavy side-swept hair with harsh ends makes you look younger. This hairdo accentuates your eyes and eyebrows.

19. Tina Fey – The High Bun

Tina Fey's high bun hairdo
Image: Shutterstock

Comedy genius Tina Fey often jokes about how dorky she used to look when she was younger, which is unbelievable looking at her in this amazing hairstyle. The big high bun is a favorite among a lot of women over 40. Add height to your hair near the crown and glamor if you have a big forehead.

20. Toni Collette – Tapered Bangs

Toni Collette's tapered bangs hairstyle
Image: Shutterstock

If you have a round, heart-shaped or a square face and are looking to frame it perfectly, this is the hairdo for you. The tapered side bangs make your face look slender and long.

21. Uma Thurman – Half Ponytail With Side Bangs

Uma Thurman's half ponytail with side bangs hairstyle
Image: Shutterstock

Gorgeous Uma Thurman’s hairstyle is so simple yet stylish. Perfect for any occasion! A half ponytail with side swept bangs is easy to mimic.

22. Kelly Hu – Naturally Straight

Kelly Hu's naturally straight hairstyle
Image: Shutterstock

Show off your naturally straight hair like Kelly Hu. If your face is slightly round, add volume near the middle parting using a round brush.

23. Lucy Liu – All Tied-In Ponytail

Lucy Liu's ponytail hairstyle
Image: Shutterstock

The key to the right hairdo for women over 40 is to go simple. Lucy Liu looks pretty in that mid ponytail with all her hair tied. If you have an oblong face, a middle parting will look great.

24. Charlize Theron – Bun With A High Puff

Charlize Theron's bun with a high puff hairstyle
Image: Shutterstock

A low bun with a high puff in front is a suave hairdo. If you have a long face like Charlize Theron, this hair will soften your face because of the puff and exude confidence.

25. Kate Beckinsale – Flair Waves In A Ponytail

Kate Beckinsale's flair waves in a ponytail hairstyle
Image: Shutterstock

When you’re over 40, being simple counts. Try this classy hairdo sported by Kate Beckinsale. The wavy light curls in the pony make your face look slim.

Tuera A. Jacobs, a licenced cosmetologist and an expert in the field with more than 20 years of experience, says, “Do not be afraid to try this look even if your locs are not as full as Ms. Kate’s. This look can be achieved with clip-in extensions or a drawstring ponytail.”

26. Lauren Graham – The Pin Up

Lauren Graham's pin-up hairstyle
Image: Shutterstock

Well hello, Lorelai Gilmore! Lauren Graham looks like a fashionista in this beautiful hairdo. Just clip the top of your hair with pins to mimic this look. Add a small puff to add height and volume to your hair.

Tuera A. Jacobs, an expert cosmetologist, suggests, “To create volume at the top of your hair, you may have to tease it. Use a fine tooth comb to gently comb your hair downward towards your scalp, causing it to slightly tangle. This will help you create a voluminous final look.”

27. Rebecca Romijn – Face Framing Half Ponytail

Rebecca Romijn's face frface-framingaming half ponytail hairstyle
Image: Shutterstock

Rebecca Romijn looks impeccable in this half ponytail hairdo. Her mismatched parting adds to the look. The waves and highlights frame her face and accentuate her facial features.

28. Courtney Cox – Layers

Courtney Cox's layer hairstyle
Image: Shutterstock

Layers are godsent for women over 40. The layers frame your face, bringing more femininity and definition to it. Courtney Cox shows us that layers are the best. Layers also add volume to your hair, making it more bouncy.

29. Lisa Kudrow – The Bouffant

Lisa Kudrow's bouffant hairstyle
Image: Shutterstock

Try the bouffant bun with a side parting. If you have a slightly chubby face or a large forehead, try this hairdo with deep side-swept bangs as that will help give the lower half of your face a narrow look and take the focus off your forehead.

30. Nicole Kidman – Braid It!

Nicole Kidman's braided hairstyle
Image: Shutterstock

A simple braid can go a long way. Copy Nicole Kidman with this gorgeous messy braid. The side parting and upturned hair add volume to her mane and accentuate her eyes.

31. Jennifer Lopez – Straight Hair With Bangs!

Jennifer Lopez sporting straight hair with bangs
Image: Shutterstock

Jennifer Lopez exudes sophistication in straight hair with bangs. The sleek, straight locks frame her face elegantly, while the stylish bangs add a chic and youthful touch. Paired with a white dress with a plunging neckline, this classic yet trendy hairstyle perfectly complements her features and showcases her fashion-forward sense of style.

32. Rashida Jones: Blunt With Bangs

Rashida Jones in a blunt haircut with bangs
Image: Shutterstock

Rashida Jones has rocked a blunt haircut with bangs since her cameo in The Office. The haircut elevates her confident and chic demeanor and dare we say, it has been turned into a modern classic by the actress! The blunt bangs effortlessly frame her face and accentuate Rashida Jones’s naturally sharp features.

Andrea, a hair style blogger, shares her most favorite and innovative long hair hairstyle on her blog: “I find [that] the French braid is one of my favorites. It looks great on its own or combined with other braids (i).” This is also because she has ankle length hair that looks great in braids or buns.

Infographic: 6 Gorgeous Long Hairstyles For Women Over 40

Factors such as age, excess product usage, and exposure to UV rays can take a toll on your hair. The good news is that there are a bunch of hairstyles you can sport without much effort or styling to add sophistication and elegance to your look. We have rounded up the top 6 long hairstyles for women over 40 in the infographic below! Scroll down and get inspired!

6 gorgeous long hairstyles for women over 40 (infographic)

Illustration: StyleCraze Design Team

It is amazing what following a daily hair care regimen and maintenance tips can do for your tresses! First, wash away the effects of daily damage with easy practices like oiling your hair regularly, and protecting it from harsh UV rays. Some tips for healthy hair are: avoid using heating tools, tight hairstyles, applying too many products, and chemical products and treatments. You can also try some basic home remedies made with ingredients from your pantry like bananas, eggs, honey, and more. And remember, each hair type is different, so scroll up and check which ingredients and trends work best for your hair type.

Frequently Asked Questions

What haircut suits a 40-year-old woman?

The haircut that suits a person depends on many factors, including their face shape and hair type. However, a long bob is one of the most suitable haircuts for a woman over 40.

Should women over 40 cut their hair?

There is no age limit for a person to cut their hair. So, a woman over 40 can cut her hair.

What are some hair care tips for maintaining healthy long hair after 40?

The top tip to maintain hair health in your 40s is to drink plenty of water and stay hydrated. Follow a balanced diet that includes biotin, iron, zinc, omega 3 fatty acids, and vitamins E and C. Avoid over washing hair as it can dry out. Oil and massage your hair and scalp regularly to keep your hair healthy. Avoid using heat styling too too often or any chemical or coloring processes.

How to add volume and texture to long hair for women over 40?

You can use volumizing and texturizing products when styling your tresses. Layers can give you a thicker, fuller look. Adding highlights and shadow roots can add texture to your hair.

Are there any hair color trends that work well with long hair for women over 40?

Subtle highlights and lowlights can work wonders on long hair for women over 40. Face framing highlights can give you a youthful appearance.

How often should women over 40 trim their long hair to maintain its health?

Regular trimming of hair prevents split ends and gets rid of damaged hair ends. It is recommended to go for a haircut every 8-12 weeks to maintain hair health.

Can long hair be styled in a professional setting for women over 40?

Yes, there are several hairstyles that can give a professional look to long hair. Low or high buns are the most preferred professional hairstyles for women over 40. A sleek ponytail can give you a polished look, while simple curls or waves can add a feminine yet professional touch.

How to choose the right long hairstyle for your face shape and features?

People can have different face shapes such as heart, long, diamond, oval, round, and square. The basic idea to follow is that your hairstyle should highlight your best feature. Talk to a professional hair stylist to know which hairstyle would suit your face shape. You can also seek inspo from celebs with your face shape.

Key Takeaways

  • Long hair can be styled elegantly for formal events with options such as low or high buns, sleek ponytails, or simple curls.
  • Adopting a regular hair care routine and avoiding excessive heat styling or harsh products can help maintain healthier tresses.
  • Opt for hairstyles that avoid tension on hair follicles such as tight high ponytails to prevent issues such as traction alopecia.
  • Hairstyles with layers or bangs are best for long hair as they add definition to your hair and give you a youthful appearance.

These graceful haircuts will make you feel youthful and fabulous at any age! Take a look at video for timeless hairstyles for women over 40.

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Tuera A. Jacobs

Tuera A. JacobsLicenced Cosmetologist

Tuera A. Jacobs is a licensed cosmetologist with over 20 years of experience in makeup, wardrobe styling, branding, creative directing, and overall style coaching. She is also the owner of Studio Hush 4:14 Image Consulting Firm, Creative Director of Christina Michelle Branding Agency, Beauty Director of Columbia Fashion Week, mother of three, and grandmother of one. Her clients look forward...read full bio

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