5 Tips for Wearing Blouses Over 60, Stylists Say
Here's all the inspiration you needed to embrace this seasonless closet staple.
When a T-shirt is too casual, but a button-down shirt is too stuffy, you likely reach for a blouse—and with good reason. Blouses are easy to dress up or down, comfortable to wear throughout the seasons, suitable for any age, and never go out of style.
"The right blouse can highlight your best features and be worn in many different combinations to maximize your wardrobe," says Amrita Harbajan, a certified image consultant. Not only that, but since blouses come in a wide range of colors, fabrics, and cuts, Harbajan notes that anyone can find pieces that will suit their own body type and personal style preferences.
If you're over 60, though, stylists say there are a few tips to keep in mind when wearing blouses. Heed the following guidance and these timeless tops will become your everyday go-to's in no time.
Choose colors based on your skin tone.
"While bold prints can be fun, solid colors often work best for a timeless look," notes Darren Bogus, a style expert and senior editor of Shop LC. He says you can never go wrong with neutrals like navy and white, which are universally flattering and easy to match.
Dominique B. Dupuis, owner of URAD, also notes that earth tones like rich chocolate brown and olive green tend to work for most people. That said, the best way to find colors that enhance your natural beauty is to consider your skin tone.
Harbajan recommends using an app called Colorwise.me to discover your best color palette based on your eyes, hair, and skin tone. You can also get a professional color analysis or consult with a stylist for personalized recommendations. Regardless of what route you take, Harbajan says it's well worth the investment, as wearing the "right" colors can highlight your best features and make your complexion glow.
Opt for breathable fabrics.
"As you age, investing in better-quality fabrics not only feels better but also tends to drape more flatteringly on the body," says Bogus.
Cheaper synthetic materials not only look less sophisticated but can also trap body heat. That's why Dupuis advises seeking out blouses made with breathable fabrics, which will keep you cool, dry, and comfortable.
More specifically, Harbajan says natural materials like cotton, bamboo, and linen tend to offer superior airflow and temperature regulation.
"Consider blouse designs with a touch of stretch, as they offer ease of movement and ensure a comfortable fit," adds Joe Manktelow-Pimm, a fashion expert and editor of 7Gents.
Look for cuts that balance out your body.
According to Bogus and Dupuis, fit is key when wearing blouses over 60. Ideally, the blouse should skim your body without clinging to it. It should feel neither too loose—which can look sloppy and add visual bulk to your figure—nor too tight, which can be equally unflattering as well as uncomfortable.
"If you have an apple-shaped body, go for blouses with empire waistlines or A-line cuts," says Manktelow-Pimm. "These styles create a flattering silhouette by drawing attention away from the waist. For those with a pear-shaped body—narrower shoulders and wider hips—choose blouses that emphasize the upper body. V-neck or boat neck styles can balance your proportions. And if you have a rectangular body shape, consider blouses with ruffles or peplums to add the illusion of curves."
Be mindful of patterns and prints.
While printed and patterned blouses may be more of a style risk than solid ones, stylists say you shouldn't necessarily shy away from them—with a few important caveats.
"If you are petite, avoid wearing large prints," says Harbajan. "If you are a plus size, avoid wearing tiny prints. The scale of the print should match your figure and features."
According to Bogus, it's always safer to opt for subtler prints that add visual interest without overwhelming your look, such as a monochromatic tartan plaid or neutral-toned windowpane pattern.
"A printed blouse is a great way to make a statement," says Elizabeth Kosich, a certified image stylist and founder at Elizabeth Kosich Styling. "Go for a timeless print—like a traditional paisley or jewel-tone floral—and pair with neutrals to quiet down the motif. A printed blouse can also balance shapes that are widest below the waist, making the head-to-toe silhouette more in harmony."
One of the main benefits of blouses is that they layer beautifully. "A well-fitted blazer over a blouse adds a touch of sophistication and structure," notes Joe Manktelow-Pimm.
Kosich adds that menswear-inspired separates like sport coats and vests can add a soft masculine edge to the ultra-feminine blouse. "For an extra touch of femininity, layer a camisole underneath a silk blouse with a pop of lace showing above the third or fourth button," she adds.
Going for a more laidback look? Layer a long duster cardigan over your blouse and finish off the ensemble with leggings or jeans and equestrian-inspired leather boots.
For more style advice delivered straight to your inbox, sign up for our daily newsletter.