9 Short Hairstyles For Women Over 50

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Prime Minister Theresa May and German Chancellor Angela Merkel attend the G20 summit on July 7, 2017 in Hamburg, Germany. Leaders of the G20 group of nations are meeting for the July 7-8 summit. Topics high on the agenda for the summit include climate policy and development programs for African economies. (Photo by Stefan Rousseau - Pool/Getty Images)

To shear or not to shear. That’s the question ladies with long locks sometimes ask themselves.

But before you reach for those scissors for a DIY job or call your best friend to come over and start snipping, there are a few things to consider. A short cropped hairstyle might look effortless but it requires effort – from a pro to cut. Therefore a visit to a professional hair salon would be in order.

“I look at face shape and hair texture,” says Wesley Hanlon, one of the creative directors at Sassoon Salon and Academy in Toronto. When a client decides to go the short route, these are the first two elements he will use to determine the style and how suitably short she should go. Whether or not her hair is thinning is another factor taken into consideration for the cut.

Most women over age 50 often opt for a shorter hairstyle, he noted. Mostly because of the easy maintenance which sometimes merely requires a bit of product and they’re ready to go.

“Also, short hair always looks as if it’s already styled,” he adds. Unlike long hair which can fall prey to elements like wind, heat and humidity and requires more time to style and can include blow drying, brushing and more products to help it look glossy and neat.

But there are many incarnations to that cropped boyish haircut. Should it be long on top like British actress Emma Thompson is currently sporting this summer? Or should it be almost one length all around like popular television host Ellen Degeneres? Or should it be layered with an undercut like reality star Kris Jenner? Your stylist can help you figure out what’s right short route for you.

And when it comes to styling your short hair, Hanlon advises to use a bit of mouse to give it a bit of lift. Your hair might be short but you still want it to have the illusion of movement.

Short hair can also be very dramatic looking. Think of those lacquered-slick and the combed back hair of those video vixens dressed in tight black dresses in the famous Robert Palmer 1985 music video, Addicted To Love. But only the most fashion-forward women can pull that look off, advises Hanlon. And age has nothing to do with it, he says, noting one of his clients in her 60s, with a strong sense of style, loves to slick her hair down and accessorize with red lips.

If you’re still sitting on the fence on whether you should go for the hair crop, consider this: the benefits of short hair goes beyond practicality and ease.

“It’s just looks uplifting and youthful,” says Hanlon.

Scroll through our slide show below for a few inspirational short hair cuts as seen this season. 


Ellen DeGeneres
Photo: C Flanigan/Getty Images


The popular talk show host has sported her close cropped blond hair style for many years, essentially making it her signature. She’s the embodiment of how this pixie-ish cut – always casually styled – can makes one look youthful, vital and energetic. Her slim fitting suits paired with sneakers also helps to convey this image.

Joanna Coles
Photo: Santiago Felipe/Getty Images


Formerly the editor-in-chief of Cosmopolitan magazine and now Chief Content Officer for Hearst, Coles’ platinum blond short bob has a slight rock-star vibe. Suitably edgy for this high powered New York executive’s strong fashion sense and whose work duties include overseeing several women’s lifestyle magazines in the Hearst publishing company and appearing on the reality show, Oh So Cosmo. 

Annette Bening
Photo: Amanda Edwards/WireImage/Getty Images


A renown talent in Hollywood, this in-demand actress is married to Warren Beatty and mother to their four children. Sporting an easy-looking and unfussy short hair style, it works well with her quiet yet chic fashion sense – think pared down classics like turtlenecks, fluid man-style trousers and studious looking eyewear.

Photo: Stefan Rousseau – Pool/Getty Images


When you have countries to run and pressing world affairs at task, it’s not surprising that the two most powerful female world leaders would be sporting easy-to-manage short hair. But rising above the wave of testosterone that was the recent G20 summit in Hamburg, both UK Prime Minister Theresa May and German Chancellor Angela Merkel were not afraid to show their femininity, sporting some bold primary colours.

May – who has cooly and unabashedly admits she likes fashion – wears her hair in an immaculate short and cropped bob which is styled feathered back to one side. While polished, the look is soft and takes any edge off her sharply tailored suits.

Merkel has come under some fashion criticism in the past for her mannish and boxy blazers. At the G20 summit, she didn’t stray from these wardrobe workhorses, but her short blondish red hair was breezily soft and gently parted on one side, which helped put an ease to her authoritative look.

Emma Thompson
Photo: Alisa Molotova/Getty Images


Now here is a short cut that radiates a healthy glow. The Oscar winning actress is sporting a breezy hairstyle which is cropped on the side and highlighted on top in a rich sun-kissed blond hue which helps give her a youthful attitude.

Photo: Anthony Devlin/Getty Images


The media personality tends to favour a rich burgundy hue as her signature hair colour. But lighter highlights helps give the deep red colour some sheen and body to keep it from looking too broodingly heavy against her pale complexion. Also styled with some volume, helps to keep it looking breezily light.

Helen Mirren
Photo: Valery Hache/AFP/Getty Images


Platinum blond can sometimes look icy and harsh if the hair style is scraped or slicked back. But here on the British actress, who seems to have gone lighter with her hair colour this summer, the look is refreshingly graceful with the light sweep and soft part of her hairstyle which gently frames her face.

Kris Jenner
Photo: Paul Archuleta/FilmMagic for Fashion Media


The reality TV personality is a perfect example of someone who brings a sultry and sexy appeal to a short cropped hairstyle. Her signature look for her dark locks is tousled and layered with a sharply tapered back and long bangs in front. For a short hairstyle, it’s also surprisingly versatile, as she styles it a variety of ways – from up and spiky to slicked to one side.