20 Simple Curly Hairstyles For Women Over 40

Written by Arshiya Syeda

There’s a terrible misconception out there that women let go of themselves and stop caring about their looks once they hit their forties. This could not be further from the truth. If anything, women become way more confident and gain a stronger understanding of what they want at this stage in their life. This reflects in their outfits and hairstyles as well. So, a great way to embrace your wild side at this age and to let go of all your inhibitions is to sport crazy curly hair!

Now, there are a ton of different ways in which you can style your curly hair. But, before we get into our top favorite picks, let’s first look at how you can create different types of curls right at home.

How To Curl Your Hair Using A Curling Iron


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What You Need
  • Heat protectant
  • Curling iron (in the size of your choice of curl)
  • Hair spray (optional)
How To Style
  1. When using any heat styling device on your hair, it is imperative that you use a heat protectant on it to protect it from getting damaged. Heat protectant can be in the form of a serum or a spray.
  2. Start by picking up a 1 to 2 inch section of hair. Don’t go for sections any bigger than that; otherwise, your curls will not have much definition.
  3. Wrap this section of hair around your curling iron for 15-20 seconds to create your curl.
  4. Repeat these steps until you have curled all your hair.
  5. Shake out your curls with your hands if you want them to look more natural.
  6. Spritz on some hair spray if you have a long day ahead of you and don’t want your curls to unravel.
  7. If you want to create a shaggy/messy/texturized curls look, simply spritz on some texturizing spray all over your curls and run a hair brush through them.

How To Create Big Voluminous Curls Using A Blowdryer


Image: Instagram

What You Need
  • Volumizing mousse
  • Round Brush
  • Blowdryer
  • Smoothening serum
How To Style
  1. Start off by applying a dollop of mousse all over your washed, wet hair. This will give your hair tons of volume.
  2. Start by blowdrying your hair while just brushing it down.
  3. Once your hair is semi-dry and somewhat straight, start rolling individual sections of your hair around the round brush from the ends up and then blowdry them to create big curls.
  4. Shake out your curls to give them more volume and apply some smoothening serum to get rid of any frizz.

How To Curl Your Hair Using A Flat Iron


Image: Shutterstock

What You Need
  • Heat protectant
  • Flat iron
How To Style
  1. Prep your hair with some heat protectant.
  2. Pick up a 2 inch section of hair.
  3. Clamp down your flat iron about a third of the way down from your roots.
  4. Start twisting the flat iron away from your face so that the section of hair starts wrapping around it.
  5. Keep twisting your flat iron slowly so that your hair gets ample time to get curled.
  6. Keep twisting it until it has reached the end of the section of your hair and your curled hair naturally falls out of it.
  7. Repeat this process until you’ve curled all your hair.

Which Type Of Curls You Should Go For Based On Your Face Shape

The shape of your face plays a huge role in determining how your curly hair will look on you. Since there are a variety of curly hair styles that you can go for, it’s important that you pick one that will suit your face shape. Big blowdried curls done on layered hair work perfectly for round faces as they add more definition to your facial structure. For oval and oblong face shapes, tightly coiled kinky curls work beautifully as they add tons of volume around the faces and give them a softer look. Any kind of curly hair parted and swept to one side is perfect for anyone with a square-shaped face. People with diamond and heart face shapes are those lucky ones who can carry of any and all curly hairstyles with elan.

Well, now that you know how to curl your hair and which type of curls work best with your face shape, let’s dive into the best curly hairstyles that you can sport if you are over 40!

20 Glamorous Curly Hairstyles For Women Over 40

1. Shaggy Red Headed Bob


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Now that you’ve hit your 40s and have a bit of time for yourself, why not shake things up a bit and have fun? This shaggy bob with texturized curls looks uber cool all by itself. But get your hair colored in a bright red shade to infuse some funk into your look.

2. Texturized Spiral Curls On Medium Length Hair


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Imagine yourself frolicking in a meadow, wearing a long flowy dress and some wild flowers in your hair. This is the kind of curly hairstyle that would fit in that fantasy perfectly. These big spiral curls (achieved easily with the help of a curling iron and some texturizing spray) look their gorgeous best when done on medium or long hair.

3. Messy Curls On Layered Long Bob


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Get back to your 70s’ groove with this messy style that will channel your youth. The key to a good curly style lies in its layering. Layered haircuts make curls look super defined the way no other cut can. So, try out this layered long bob style with messy curls and bangs to feel young and fresh once again.

4. Kinky Curls With Subtle Highlights


Image: Instagram

Kinky curls have an appeal of their own that no other kind of curls can match. So, whip out that curling iron of yours (or maybe try out this technique that involves chopsticks?) to give your short bob a kinky twist. Complete your hair transformation with some subtle light brown highlights to give your hair that perfect sunkissed look.

5. Curly Cropped Bob With Cropped Bangs


Image: Instagram

Gone are the days when long hair was the only suitable hairstyle for a woman. It’s time to break that barrier and experiment with some unconventional styles, don’t you think? So check out this ultra cropped curly bob that will have everyone sitting up and taking notice of you. The halfway cropped bangs only add to the funky vibe of this look.

6. Elegant Open Curls


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If there’s one actress who has aged gracefully in Hollywood, it has got to be Julia Roberts. And one hairstyle that she has managed to perfect over the years is the loose open curls style. This relaxed wavy style done on her shoulder length blonde hair personifies elegance and class.

7. Romantic Curls Bob


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You probably fell in love with her the first time you watched You’ve Got Mail and have dreamt of getting her look ever since. Well, your quest ends here! These soft romantic curls (the result of a 1 inch curling iron) done on a short bob will leave you looking like the cute protagonist of a feel-good rom-com for sure!

8. Center Parted Curls


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If a red carpet look is what you desire, then a red carpet look is what you’ll get with this Michelle Pfeiffer inspired curly hair look. Just leave your hair in some hair curlers overnight to wake up with a totally transformed look in the morning!

9. Pin Up Curls


Image: Getty

Just because you’re in your 40s doesn’t mean that you have to give up on your dream of looking like a pin up model! Life begins at 40, after all. So, whip out those trusty ol’ hair curlers of yours and leave them in on the lower half of your hair overnight to get this sexy Marilyn Monroe-esque look.

10. Loose Curls Long Bob


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On countless occasions I’ve found myself wondering if Nicole Kidman ever ages. And I’ve come to the conclusion that she is some sort of immortal being. And over the years she has perfected her signature wavy long bob look to the T. Just a few minutes with a curling iron after you’ve put on your outfit should work splendidly to create this look.

11. Rock Chic Curls Bob


Image: Instagram

It’s amazing how far a set of hair curlers and a can of texturizing spray can take you in styling your curly hair. This rock chic look done with the aforementioned items will have everyone thinking of you as a woman who is in total control of her life and will not take any shit from anyone.

12. Sleeked Down Curls


Editorial credit: Kathy Hutchins / Shutterstock.com

When it comes to curly hair, you can play around with textures and styles to create unique hair looks. Take Sandra Bullock, for instance. She has parted her texturized curls down the middle and sleeked them down with some hair gel and bobby pins to create a stunning style of contrasts.

13. Low Defined Curls


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One classic look that Hollywood actresses keep going back to is the low curls look. This straight on top/curly at the bottom style is the easiest way to create a look that is red carpet ready. Do what Salma Hayek did and part your hair on one side to look like the epitome of grace and class.

14. Wet Curls


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Admit it, nothing can beat the sex appeal of the wet hair look. And when done on curly hair, the effect is even more breathtaking. Sofia Vergara shows us how it’s done with her layered hair done up in voluminous curls and given the ‘wet’ effect with the help of some hair gel.

15. Tightly Coiled Curls


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As you grow older, you may find yourself letting go of that straightening iron and your need to conform to societal beauty standards, and leaving your hair just the way it is. So, if your hair is naturally this curly (because the Lord knows you can’t recreate these kind of curls) then it’s time you forgo those heating tools and let them be just the way they are.

16. Dual Toned Vintage Curls


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Eva Longoria is one starlet who slays the hair game every time she steps onto the red carpet. So, it’s no surprise that she looks absolutely stunning in this vintage era inspired curls. The brown and black combo of her short bob only enhance the look of her super defined curls.

17. Super Shaggy Curly Bob


Image: Instagram

The great thing about curly hair is that you can go as subtle or as crazy with it as your heart desires. So, if a sexy mop of shaggy curls is what you want, this is a style you definitely need to check out. These super texturized curls done on a short bob are the result of some great usage of a diffuser on a blowdryer.

18. Swept Away Curls With Bangs


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When it comes to Susan Sarandon, subtlety is her style statement. So, of course, her take on curly hair had to be super simple and understated. On her long bob, she has gone for gently swept away curls and some wispy bangs to create this classy hair look.

19. Sweetheart Curls


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Diane Lane has that face that seems to say she is always going to be there to nurture and comfort you, don’t you think? And this sweet curly hair style only adds to her fresh faced look. Just bust out your curling iron and spritz on some texturizing spray to get this sweetheart curls look.

20. Lion’s Mane Curls


Editorial credit: Kathy Hutchins / Shutterstock.com

First things first, I’m pretty sure Jennifer Lopez sold her soul to the devil to still look like she’s 20. Secondly, there’s no way you can resist this curly hairdo. With big texturized curls that cascade down her face, Lopez looks nothing less than a fierce goddess who will eat your heart for breakfast if you cross her.

So, what are you waiting for, my lovely ladies? Go forth and pursue all your curly hair dreams! And don’t forget to leave me a cheeky little comment below to let me know which hairstyles you are dying to try out.

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Arshiya Syeda is an editor and certified counselor. Ever the lover of the written word, she served on the editorial boards of her school and college newsletters. Writing articles on hairstyles, hair care, and nutrition helped her combine her love for reading, writing, and research. As an editor, she helps her team members deliver polished and meticulously researched content. Arshiya is fluent in English, Urdu, and Hindi and aims to become a multilinguist by learning German and teaching herself American Sign Language (ASL).