7 Tips for Wearing White If You're Over 50, According to Stylists
Here's how to feel confident and comfortable in white regardless of your age.
Spring is here! As you pull out your favorite white jeans from the back of your closet, you pause. You're over 50 now, can you still pull it off? Who do you think you are, J. Lo?! But Daisy Tinsley Barnett, a nationwide personal stylist and founder of THE DAISY EDIT, says it's an outdated misconception that white is associated with youth.
"Anyone can wear white regardless of age, as long as they feel confident and comfortable in it," agrees Melony Huber, a global fashion stylist and co-founder of La Peony, an ethical lifestyle collection. "In fact, white can be a great way to add freshness and vibrancy to an outfit, making it look modern and chic."
For tips on how to pull this look off, keep reading to find out how to wear white if you're over 50, according to stylists.
READ THIS NEXT: 5 Tips for Wearing Pastels If You're Over 60.
If you always thought of black as the most slimming and flattering color, you might be intimidated to wear white, which is why starting small is a great way to gradually get comfortable wearing the lighter hue.
"A crisp white button-down is a great place to start," suggests Barnett. "Pop the collar and add a chunky necklace or layered gold necklaces. You can also add a colorful silk scarf around your neck…to add some color close to your face."
"Experiment with incorporating white in smaller doses, such as a white trim on a dark jacket or a white blouse under a dark sweater," offers Huber.
Find the right shade of white.
Not all shades of white are the same, and the key to pulling off the color is making sure you find the right shade for your skin tone.
For example, if your skin has cool undertones, a bright white with a blush tint might be more flattering. If you have warmer undertones, a creamier white with a yellowish tint might work better, says Barnett.
"The key is when you put it close to your face does it brighten your complexion or make you look tired?" explains Zoé DuFour, a Los Angeles-based stylist and designer of the Zoé DuFour Collection. "You will feel it when you put it on. If it doesn't make you feel fabulous, it's not the right shade for you."
Adding the right accessories can completely transform and elevate your white garments.
"Adding a neutral brown color is a great way to 'tone down' a white dress," Barnett offers. "A beautiful Italian leather sandal…hat, and even a thick brown belt [are] great ways to style a white dress for a more casual look."
"For a dressier look, I recommend styling a white dress with gold accessories—statement jewelry, a strappy gold heel, and a gold metallic clutch will look stunning," she adds.
Select the right fit.
When it comes to denim, you want to make sure you have the right fit.
"White jeans are trending down, and chino or utility pants are trending up. Try a white…slim utility pant and opt for an ecru color rather than bright white," Barnett suggests.
"[White denim] should skim your body and not be too tight; then [pair] it with a beautiful blouse or sweater," DuFour adds.
For white clothing in general, Huber says that it should "flow in troubled areas of the body and cut in to show off the assets of the body."
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Play with different fabrics and textures.
"It is important to choose fabrics that are lightweight, drape well, and do not add bulk to your figure," says Sharon Warten, a global fashion stylist. "Avoid fabrics that are stiff or heavy as they can make you appear larger than you are."
She also says that incorporating white pieces with different textures—say, a lace top or a wool coat—"can add depth and interest to an outfit."
An all-white monochromatic look paired with heels can help lengthen and slim your legs.
"Wearing a belt around a white dress accentuates the small waist and creates the focus for a slimmer look," says Huber.
Add a pop of color.
"White can be a difficult color to wear when you are over 50 simply because it can drain the color from your face. This can easily be balanced with a pop of color lipstick, accessories that add color (earrings, necklace, scarf), or a brighter layer over the white," suggests Barnett.
"If you still prefer to wear mostly dark clothes, that's perfectly fine too! Never change your personal style to follow trends or something that doesn't resonate with you," advises Warten.