ABOVE PHOTO: Taraji P. Henson (Photo: Tinseltown / shutterstock)
By Leah Fletcher
As the holidays quickly approach, most women have begun the countdown for the selection of their holiday and New Year’s Eve hair, makeup and party outfits. Unless you are a procrastinator extraordinaire and have a tendency to do things at the last minute, now is the time to start planning and making final decisions about your dazzling holiday look for the upcoming end-of-year festivities.
Some older women find it problematic that most fashion magazines, blogs or video blogs, direct their holiday hair and makeup story content to the younger crowd. So what is the mature woman to do when she is over 50 and seeking sophisticated hairstyle idea, particularly those that don’t involve waist-length curls or braids? Several local Philadelphia hairstylist answer the question with their own holiday hairstyle ideas and suggest celebrities that inspire their concepts for older women.
Their suggested styles are suited for mature women who like shorter, more conservative hairdos but still want something fashionable. Check out these stylish celeb hairdos, and choose the one that will work the best for you even if you are not a mature woman.
Diahann Carroll—Timeless Layered Cut
This iconic actress is known for her groundbreaking performances on stage and screen. She was the first Black actress with her own television series, “Julia” for NBC. Hair stylist Nona Blue says this hairstyle idea is for women who like to keep their hair shorter and their faces as the main attraction. If you have a short layered haircut, Blue says, this look can easily be recreated at home by using hot rollers to curl the hair away from the face on the top and sides. “At the back, continue rolling the hair down towards the nape of the neck and finish this look off with a great set of earrings,” explained Blue, who’s client list contains many mature women. Overall, this classic hairstyle is a chic choice for older women because it tends to look good on all face shapes.
Taraji P. Henson—Gorgeous Layered Bob
This “Empire” television series headliner is noted for any number of sought-after hairstyles. However, most associate her with some form of the classic bob. Lots of flirty layers keep Hinson’s style fresh and full of movement, according to stylist Lana Holland. She points out that Henson’s various bob styles offer women a wispy complement to all holiday accoutrements. Holland, a 20-year industry veteran, advises the mature woman to consider a layered bob that falls just below the jaw line and includes shorter fringes around the face and side-swept bangs. To style, she advises using a round brush to flip ends out as you blow dry. The bob, according to Holland, is so popular right now that it is on her list of this year’s trendiest hairstyles.
Oprah—Highlighted Curls and Tendrils
The accomplishments of this media mogul—talk show host, actress, producer and philanthropist—precede her. Oprah credits her long-time hair stylist Andre Walker for the condition and styling of her hair. These days she sport thick, long curls with extra dimension. “If you’ve got thick, long curls, like Oprah, you can add extra dimension by asking your stylist for thin, hand-painted ‘babylights”, throughout your loose falling curls,” noted Aiyana Hill.
Consider your personality. If you want a classic and sophisticated look, loose-flowing, shoulder-length curls might be for you. To attain this hairstyle, Hill said that you can start with a holding or setting lotion, applying it to each section of hair that you intend to twist. “Narrow twists are best because they create a strong visible effect and they last for a long time. Short hair leads to thin twists that don’t always give you a desirable result,” said Hill, who said curling irons can help you achieve the same result.
Now you’re ready for a great holiday evening.
Angela Bassett—Edgy Pixie Ensures Great Evening
This award winning actress is best known for her biographical film roles. However Angela Bassett is known most notably for her performance as Tina Turner in the biopic “What’s Love Got to Do with It.” Bassett additionally has portrayed Betty Shabazz in both “Malcolm X” and “Panther,” Katherine Jackson in “The Jacksons: An American Dream,” Rosa Parks in “The Rosa Parks Story” and Voletta Wallace in “Notorious,” and Coretta Scott King in “Betty and Coretta.”
Bassett’s pixie cut works because of its versatility, according to stylist Kim Tracy. “You can wear it straight, curly, wavy, or pinned back” according to the Camden, New Jersey stylist, who believes the possibilities are endless. The pixie cut is a style that may be edgy or conservative and may suit a woman at any age for any event. As older women embrace color, the pixie becomes an excellent styling option. For those who like this option, Tracy said they should ask their stylist for a face-framing cut that is heavily layered throughout. “Styling is easy. Blow your dry hair using a medium sized round brush and then hold it in place with a strong hairspray.”
These are just a few fabulous festive hairstyle ideas that will work for the style-conscious, mature woman. Whatever your preferred hairstyle, flaunt it “fiercely” this holiday season. And, don’t forget to pair it with some fanciful makeup and a dazzling outfit.