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Hairstyles After 40: The Short Hair Edition

by: Better Not Younger December 27, 2021 8 min read

Miranda, played by Cynthia Nixon, wears an ultra-cool side-swept bob with a deep side part and sleek strands.

Our hair is one of our best instruments of self-expression—no matter our age. But we know that as we age, our hair can become thinner, which can make it harder to manage and style. This doesn’t have to be the case, though! There are plenty of short hairstyles for women over 40 that are easy to maintain, style and wear with confidence.

 

Short hair can be comfortable and low-maintenance, and offer endless styling possibilities that certainly aren’t boring! It can be chic, alluring and playful, too—and it can even highlight your beautiful cheekbones. Keep reading for more benefits of sporting short hair, plus our favorite short hairstyles for women over 40.

 

Benefits of Short Hairstyles for Women

 

  1. Short hair is healthier hair. Short stands have fewer years of damage from the environment, hot tools and tough-on-tresses styles like tight ponytails that can pull and break delicate strands.

 

  1. Short hair has fewer split ends. Since short hairstyles require frequent trims to keep the look in tiptop shape, your hair stays in better health—not to mention, damaged ends can look stringy and give the illusion of thinner hair.

 

  1. Short hair creates more volume. Longer strands can weigh down your look. For curly hair, this also means bouncier, more defined curls!

 

  1. Short hair is less likely to tangle. A shorter length means strands won’t get twisted up in scarves, collars and even purse straps.

 

Keep reading to see our favorite short hairstyles for women over 40! 

Cynthia Nixon with a short bob haircut aka the bixie. A hairstyle for thin hair and women over 40.

Photograph by Craig Blankenhorn / HBO Max

1. Short Bob (aka the Bixie)

And Just Like That… the ‘90s bixie is back and trending to be one of the most popular hairstyles of 2022. So is it any surprise that Miranda, played by Cynthia Nixon, sports an ultra-cool side-swept take on this pixie-meets-bob hybrid in the Sex and the City reboot? Another fun fact: Did you know that Nixon herself is a fan of Better Not Younger’s products? Not only did she rock a short hairstyle at the And Just Like That premiere that was crafted with BNY products, but Miranda’s onscreen hair was even brought together with BNY products, inspiring Nixon to create custom Better Not Younger jackets for her on-set glam squad as a tribute to her character.

 

Why We Love It: Who doesn’t want to emulate their favorite TV show character? After seeing how perfect the sleek side-swept bob looks on Nixon, we can’t help but want to try it on ourselves! Plus, since this haircut is a happy medium between a pixie and a more classic-length bob, it’s a good test run if you want to go short but aren’t sure how short.


Pro Styling Tips: The severe side part of this cut immediately adds volume to your hair, which can be really helpful for thinner hair. Using a root lifter to style and then teasing the roots slightly will add even more volume. You can also play with the angle of the part or add soft waves for endless styling options! Layers help create dimension and texture, too.

 

Blonde woman with Spiky Pixie haircut. A hairstyle for thin hair and women over 40.

2. Spiky Pixie

Looking for a bolder change to revamp your look? Go for a pixie cut that is short enough to stand out from the crowd. Bangs can help give this look an extra boost of style, and wispy sideburns keep it ladylike. The spikiness of this cut provides so much pizzazz and takes the everyday pixie cut to the next level.

 

Why We Love It: Pixies look amazing with gray hair, especially because this cut can show off the different dimensions of gray shades. Plus, this cut can bring some life to thinner hair: It’s easy enough to style it up to add volume as well as distract from thinner spots.

 

Pro Styling Tips: Be careful of using too many products since this can weigh down your short strands. You also may need to wash your hair a bit more often with this style because once it’s been slept on, all bets are off! But our Fresh Start dry shampoo can certainly lend a helping hand to refresh your look between washings.

 

 

 

Woman with peter pan pixie cut. This side-swept look is ultra-chic and usually a bit longer than the spiky pixie. A hairstyle for thin hair and women over 40.

3. Peter Pan Pixie

If you want a slightly tamer pixie, try the Peter Pan pixie. This side-swept look is ultra-chic and usually a bit longer than the spiky pixie. This low-maintenance feminine pixie cut can be slicked back for fancy nights out or pinned back off your face with bobby pins when you’re in a hurry. It’s easier to style on straight hair rather than curly, but could also work on slightly wavy tresses.

 

Why We Love It: This short hairstyle for women over 40 looks like it takes more work to maintain than it actually does—so it’s really impressive. Plus, when your strands are this short, it shows off all the dimension in your hair color, which is fun!

 

Pro Styling Tips: To style this low-maintenance feminine pixie cut, give your roots some lift with our Lift Me Up Hair Thickener and use a flat iron to put each piece in place or tousle it with your fingers for a more effortless look. Working with natural curls? Use a blow-dryer for this hairstyle for short hair to help make the look soft and sleek.

 


4. Short Shag

Throw it back to your younger years with a short shaggy cut. This is one of our favorite wash-and-go hairstyles for short hair because it’s effortless. Best for curly or wavy hair, the short shag will allow you to embrace the natural texture of your hair.

 

Why We Love It: It’s a wash-and-go hairstyle for short hair that instantly adds volume and works on so many different face shapes—plus, you can control the level of shag you prefer best! Curly hair isn’t always easy to manage, but this cut works with you rather than against you.

 

Pro Styling Tips: Use a frizz-tamer to keep your curls in check when styling a shag, but beyond that, this cut is easy as can be.

Anna Wintour with her fench bob haircut. This short hairstyle for women over 40 is very versatile and looks great on pretty much everyone. A hairstyle for thin hair and women over 40.



5. French Bob

For an elevated take on the classic bob, go for a French bob—a chic bob with bangs. This short hairstyle for women over 40 is very versatile and looks great on pretty much everyone. Plus, the bangs can be whatever length you prefer, so they’ll suit your hair and lifestyle.

 

Why We Love It: This look works on any hair texture, no matter how fine, thin, straight or curly. As long as the cut is designed for your hair type, you can absolutely rock a French bob.

 

Pro Styling Tips: If you have straight or wavy hair, use a flat iron and a root lifter to build volume and body in your strands right at the root for that extra oomph. Your curly hair in a French bob is pretty effortless—spritz in some texturizing spray, give your hair a shake, and go!

 


6. Inverted Bob

One of the most popular short hairstyles for women over 40 is the inverted bob. This cut is a bit shorter in the back than it is in the front, so the bottom of your hair angles downward toward your chin and shoulders. By cutting your hair like this, it gives the back section—which can often be flat and dull—a bit of lift.

 

Why We Love It: This is a great short hairstyle for ladies in their 40s because it adds body where you need it. Because of that, it’s perfect for women with thin, straight hair as the cut will fake the volume you don’t have but want!

 

Pro Styling Tips: This look is actually quite effortless, because it’s all in the cut. Use our Wake Up Call Volumizing Shampoo and Wake Up Call Volumizing Conditioner to pump up the volume and then just let your hair air-dry. You can, of course, blow-dry it and style it, but opting for a no-heat styling routine works well with this cut.

Woman with Layered Lob Haircut. This look is perfect for women who don’t want to cut their hair too short. It’s a bit on the longer side compared to some of these other short hairstyles for ladies in their 40s. A hairstyle for thin hair and women over 40.



7. Layered Lob

This look is perfect for women who don’t want to cut their hair too short. It’s a bit on the longer side compared to some of these other short hairstyles for ladies in their 40s. The layers can add some volume to the bottom of the hair, which is ideal for thinning strands.

 

Why We Love It: This style gives women who have always had long hair a shorter style that isn’t quite so jarring when looking in the mirror. Plus, this new hairstyle for women over 40 works with a multitude of textures and hair types: curly, thin, straight…you name it!

 

Pro Styling Tips: To style this new hairstyle for women over 40, blow-dry your hair with a round brush to amp up the volume. If you have curly hair, spritz it with a curl-reactivating product to tame the frizz and help define your curls before using your fingers to shape them into place.

 

Tell Us: Are you ready to rock a new short hairstyle? Share your favorite style in the comments below!

 

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Better Not Younger offers a wide range of hair products that are perfect for styling short hairstyles for women over 40. Our Wake Up Call Volumizing Duo and Lift Me Up Hair Thickener are two of our essential products for creating any short hairstyle you’ll love.

 

Tell Us: Are you ready to rock a new short hairstyle? Share your favorite style in the comments below!




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