Dominique Browning, the former editor of House & Garden magazine, and the author of "Slow Love" a memoir that's been touted as the "Eat, Pray, Love" for the middle-aged set, has long hair.
Her mom hates it. A friend worries she's hurting her career with it, but Browning loves it and she dispels all the long hair/older women myths in an essay for the New York Times.
That's a picture of her from her book jacket. She's gorgeous, yes? If you like her essay, you might find yourself lost for a few hours in her lovely blog, Slow Love Life, as I did tonight.
I'm a firm believer that you can grow your hair long in your 50s and 60s as long as it looks healthy. It's simply an old-fashioned rule that you must cut your hair to your chin the day after your 40th birthday. Most women actually look best with their hair to their shoulders with a few layers cut into it (see "The Most Flattering Cut on Everyone"). If you have to abide by a rule, consider your face shape.There's something to be said for women who break the mold, these women are my heroes. Women like my 80-year-old friend in Burton, Texas, who builds houses for Habitat for Humanity and rides her bike from Austin to Houston. Women who are single moms by choice. Women like Marly Harris of California, who writes in the comments section of Browning's essay:
At 77, my hip-length wavy hair infuriates many people (mostly other women my age). I used to wear it in a bun; I looked like an over-the-hill ballerina. I've finally found the courage to let it all hang out. There is absolutely no maintenance involved (my last hairdresser appointment was in 1992). I shampoo it once a week and forget about it once I've quickly brushed it in the morning. My delightful son said to me, when I turned 60, "Are you going to cut and perm your hair like all of the other old ladies?" It's dark and silvering and frizzy and I'm finally happy with it. No, not just happy, deliriously happy.
More on older women, hair and makeup:
- Hairstyles: What you can get away with at 20, 30, 40, 50, 60 & older
- Great hairstyles for older women
- Is your hairstyle aging you?
Image: Dominique Browning from her book, "Slow Love"