40 Best Fashion Brands for Women Over 40
These brands are sure to take your style game to the next level.
One of the best parts about being 40 is the self-knowledge that comes with life experience. By now, you've lived with yourself long enough to know your strengths, your weaknesses, and how you take your coffee. In terms of your wardrobe, you know the silhouettes, fabrics, and hues that flatter you, and which ones definitely don't (sorry not sorry, rompers!)
That's why it's so critical to find the fashion brands that understand how to make you look sophisticated but not stuffy, chic but not too trendy, and age-appropriate but never frumpy. Luckily, it's never been easier to find brands designing gorgeous clothes for women 40 and up. So read on to discover which brands are about to become your go-tos. And if you're curious as to which styles and trends don't age as well, check out these 40 Things You Should Stop Wearing After 40.
Best Life's editors have scoured the internet to bring you the best products out there, and we're hoping you'll love them as much as we do. Full disclosure: we may earn a commission for anything you purchase through links on this page, but that doesn't mean you'll pay more for them (we'd never do that to you!). Pricing and availability are accurate as of the piece's initial publication date, but it's the internet and we can't guarantee that these sweet, sweet deals will last forever, so scoop them up before someone else does!
Ann Taylor nails work basics like shift dresses and tailored jackets, but the brand has become a bit more daring in recent years. For example, you can wear this Petaled Wrap Dress to the office with loafers and a blazer, then dress it up for after hours drinks by swapping in nude heels and a denim jacket. And now that you're all dressed up for work, why not dress up your desk, too? Check out these 15 Adorable Pieces of Office Décor That Will Actually Make You Want to Go To Work.
Dovetail Workwear began when founders Kate and Kyle Marie launched a landscaping business but found that their jeans weren't up to the task. Their Maven Slim Power Stretch work pant is ideal for real women who need jeans that can hold up to the wear and tear of everyday use—but you don't need to be a landscaper to appreciate their durability and slim fit. Moms and grandmas alike will appreciate the ability to kneel, crouch, crawl, and play knowing that these jeans won't give out (at least, not before their backs do!)
Japanese brand Uniqlo exploded onto the American scene, delivering high-quality casual wear at reasonable prices. We love their hip graphic tees, smart wool sweaters, and silky button-downs. This Joy of Print chiffon dress features a peasant dress silhouette, chiffon overlay, and flattering drawstring—perfect for Valentine's Day. And if you're looking for the perfect piece of jewelry to complete the look, check out these 15 Gorgeous Pieces of Gold Jewelry under $100.
Fast fashion retailer Zara isn't just for your teenage daughter. It's our favorite brand for runway-inspired items at prices that can't be beat. Check out this gorgeous gray marl jacket with lapel collar and deep front pockets, which will make you feel like the boss you are. And for more lightweight jackets and coats, check out these 15 Spring Jackets You'll Want to Wear All Year in 2020.
There's a reason Meghan Markle wore Club Monaco during a royal tour of South Africa: The brand's pieces are tasteful, feminine, and foolproof. Whether you're wearing one of their classic camel coats, playful jumpsuits, or cropped twill pants, you won't need to give it a second thought. We love this sophisticated slim pencil skirt with a hidden front slit and a clean line, which makes you look oh-so long and lean.
Madewell has seriously well-made and easy-to-wear essentials, including budget-friendly jeans for every shape, oversized scarves, and cozy sweaters made for weekends. Take this gorgeous striped sweater, for example—it's perfect for a lazy Saturday morning brunch, and better yet, it comes in sizes XXS to 3XL.
"Fit for real people with real bodies," is A. Lynn's motto—a motto they live up to by offering separates in both a size and a length (so smart!). CMO Tamara Laine explains, "As we age, our body naturally changes and so finding clothing that fits perfectly off the rack can be difficult. Our clothing fits all women and their beautifully unique shapes." This Turtle Top, made from thick, soft jersey material, could be paired with cropped white jeans to drop off the kids or tucked into a floral flared skirt for a special occasion.
J. Jill offers laid-back style for all bodies. We love their figure-flattering silhouettes, understated designs, and feel-good fabrics. This textured sweater tunic, which comes in three gorgeous colors, has us dreaming of a last-minute vacation somewhere with warm days and cooler nights. And if you're planning a trip, don't forget to check out these 25 Must-Pack Travel Essentials Under $25.
StyleSaint is an eco-friendly designer label offering core-of-your-closet essentials. And we love that a huge part of StyleSaint's mission is to minimize the fashion industry's environmental impact. This perfectly draped Beechwood V-Neck Sport Dress in cobalt is the perfect combination of style and sustainability, thanks to its fabric made from sustainably harvested beechwood trees.
Banana Republic offers versatile classics for the modern woman—at a very reasonable price point. We particularly love this Print Utility Shirt Dress, which features fun but sophisticated animal-inspired prints and comes in sizes 0-20. Pair it with knee-high boots and a leather jacket for dinner out somewhere special or dress it down with a pair of slip-on sneakers for a weekend walk.
Eileen Fisher has become synonymous with earthy, simple, and elevated basics—but did you know they're also an industry leader reshaping the environmental movement? This Organic Cotton Jersey Tee, which comes in petite and plus sizes, is designed with an easy, straight fit. Layer it with wide-legged slacks for Casual Friday or with jeans for weekend errands.
Brooklyn-based brand UZI has an unmistakable art-teacher-chic vibe with its smock dresses and loose tunics made of one-of-a-kind fabrics. For example, this long-sleeve cream scratch top is made of finely woven 100 percent cotton with a wrinkle effect to help you lean into the tousled ingénue look without looking unkempt.
It is Well LA
It is Well L.A. is the place to go for timeless pieces made from high-quality fabrics that are perfect for getting hygge in, no matter the season. And we love that 10 percent of their proceeds go to a charitable partner devoted to digging clean water wells. Cuddle up with this oversized chunky cardigan, available in two neutral hues, which features patch pockets, a rolled edge detail, and a waffle stitch.
Lands' End is an all-American brand that excels when it comes to exceptionally rugged outerwear, practical yet flattering swimwear, and uber-cozy fleeces. This lightweight yet warm fleece jacket has been brushed for superior softness. Layer it over a t-shirt or under a vest, depending on the weather.
In an industry known for pushing conformity, KOTN showcases so-called "unconventional" fashion models. Indeed, KOTN's models are as diverse as its clothing line, which excels at affordable essentials, super-soft loungewear, and cozy knitwear in all sizes. This stretchy high neck tank is so versatile, we recommend you get at least one in every color— get a 3-pack and you'll save 15 percent!
Founder and CEO Kristi Soomer started Encircled with the dream of helping women travel lighter. She explains, "Encircled pieces can be easily dressed up for work, or dressed down for the weekend, helping women say goodbye to having a separate workwear wardrobe." This Fair Short Sleeve, made of baby-soft sustainably sourced fabric, is anything but basic with elevated design details like a front seam, covered back neckline, and back yoke.
Did you know that sunspots and wrinkles are exacerbated by sun exposure? That's why we love Ambernoon, created by board-certified dermatologist Dr. Erum Ilyas. He explains, "Ambernoon's casual dresses, pants, cover-ups, and hats are constructed with textiles woven tightly enough to block the sun's rays. The fabrics are soft, durable, and not chemically treated with UVA/UVB repellent." This Anya Mock Half Zip Tunic is versatile for both indoor and outdoor wear, and is UPF 50+, making it the perfect mix of stylish and safe.
Torrid, which specializes in fashion for sizes 10 to 30, is designed with your curves in mind. Their clothes are playful and sexy, yet elegant and age-appropriate. We're obsessed with this very '90s burgundy midi dress, which features a faux button front, pockets (yes!), and a stretch waist. Pair it with a cardigan, leggings, and heels for dinner out in early spring, or slides and a distressed denim jacket for sightseeing in a new city.
Karina Cousineau, the CEO, designer, and founder of Karina, had a simple vision: to create dresses for every woman. We especially love this Joan dress, which features a crossover V-neck bodice and a knee-length full skirt. Oh yeah, did we mention it has pockets? The dress looks particularly cool when paired with knee-high boots, a belt, and a brightly colored blazer.
If you love a warm neutral color palate and luxe fabrics, head to Aritzia. We could live in their dusty rose cardigans, creamy white sweaters, and cognac crepe pants. Their cropped and high-waisted tie-front pants are flattering and oh-so-comfy, featuring a removable tie belt and welt pockets. Even better, they are made of Japanese fabric that resists wrinkles and hangs just right!
Everlane sets itself apart with truly radical transparency—they provide cost breakdowns for every single item of clothing they sell, from Italian loafers to cashmere sweaters. And if you're seeking the ever-elusive pair of figure-flattering curvy jeans for under $100? Everlane's got you covered with The Curvy Authentic Stretch High-Rise Skinny Jean, which has the perfect hip-to-waist ratio to create an hourglass figure.
You know Patagonia as the outdoor gear company with an ambitious mission: to save our planet. And whether it's global warming or hot flashes messing with your internal temperature, they've got all the best layers for you. For example, this Los Gatos Fleece Vest, which is made from deep-pile polyester fleece (30 percent of which is recycled!) and features princess seams for a feminine fit, is an ideal all-year layering piece.
Finnish lifestyle design house Marimekko has become world-famous for bold prints, vibrant colors, and liberating silhouettes. And as far as we're concerned, their striped shirt is the only one you'll ever need. Made of cotton jersey, it features the brand's famed Tasaraita print, a boat neckline, three-quarter sleeves, and a straight cut to the hip. Now, all you need is a one-way ticket to the French Riviera.
You've probably been wearing Gap since long before their West Side Story-inspired khaki ads were all the rage. And just as their style has evolved, so has yours. These must-have high-rise cigarette jeans are fashionable without being too trendy and feature hold-you-in pockets that help give you a smooth look all day long.
Don't expect fast fashion from maximally stylish Italian brand MaxMara. Instead, look to them for high-quality investment pieces that will last forever. We recommend perusing their sale racks to find essentials like this cotton jersey T-shirt with inspiring details like short, low set-in sleeves. Wear it with a colorful scarf to look as casually chic as a European tourist.
Gal Meets Glam
We dare you not to fall down the rabbit hole obsessing over Gal Meets Glam founder Julia Engel's style—her brand is classic, feminine, and whimsical. We love this glamorous Anita coat with a collarless silhouette and faux fur detail, which is a fashion-forward way to elevate your work attire or complement a special occasion dress.
Okay, we admit it, we were a bit skeptical at first. Spanx, beloved maker of shapewear, makes pants? But the hype is real—these Perfect Black Pants in Cropped Flare do, in fact, make your butt look perfect (not to mention your legs and belly). With smoothing ponte fabric and a comfortable, pull-on design, you can wear these to work or out on the town—and they're available in sizes ranging from XS to 3X!
Mimu Maxi was founded by two moms seeking modest, minimalist, and versatile core-of-the-closet pieces. We love their signature-cut Classic Frock, available in a variety of colors, which features sleeves that narrow for a slimming effect. We recommend wearing it with a blazer, leggings, and a thick belt for a stylish cool weather look.
London-based fashion brand Boden offers bright, patterned clothes and casual separates with a modern twist. For example, this cheery Alberta Jersey Dress, which is equally appropriate for an early morning meeting or a girls' night out for margaritas, is full of standout details, like shirred cap sleeves and a flattering pleated waist, and comes in sizes 2-22.
Loft, the Ann Taylor spin-off, is a bit like Ann Taylor's hipper little sister—its items are a bit more casual, affordable, and approachable. We love this striped poncho, which features dolman half-sleeves and warm neutral colors that look gorgeous paired with high-waisted jeans and a billowy blouse.
Sarah Liller creates effortless essentials that will be part of your wardrobe rotation for years to come. We particularly love their Aida Pants, which feature a cropped hem, relaxed silhouette, and pockets. Pair them with nude heels and a blouse for the office, or sandals and a denim jacket for a weekend look.
Don't be fooled by the twee name—Pixie Market's clothes are not just for the MPDGs among us. Their eco-friendly line of straight-from-the-runway items in mostly neutral hues is unapologetically bold. Even staples like their white button-downs are elevated—take the Andrea Pointed Collar White Shirt, which features a pleated back and ever-so-slightly longer collar, perfect for a woman with confidence that can only come from life experience.
Universal Standard prides itself on revolutionary inclusivity—their clothes come in sizes 00-40. Better yet, they allow you to exchange any of the clothes in the Fit Liberty collection for a new size if your body changes shape within a year of purchase. Made from the highest quality mid-weight, wrinkle-resistant ponte, these Moro Pocket Ponte Pants are the ultimate in versatile day-to-night wear. Plus, they feature a flat elasticized waistband that won't twist or turn.
Think of Eloquii as Zara but with a broader range of sizes. It excels at of-the-moment fashion pieces like this neoprene pencil skirt, which gives its wearer a true hourglass shape. It can be dressed up or down with ease, and is made with scuba fabric for a close-to-the-body fit.
J. Crew is our favorite brand for classics with a twist, like zebra-print flats and neon pink crewneck sweaters. Our recent obsession? Their Superplush Sherpa Full-Zip Jacket, part of their J. Crew weekend collection of low-key favorites with the spirit of Saturday morning. With bold color-blocking and extra cushiony fleece, it's sure to become your go-to layering piece.
Once you turn 40, you just don't have the patience for shoddy craftsmanship. Luckily, outdoor company L.L. Bean values quality over quantity. And no matter where you live, you need a built-to-last pair of boots that can stand up to all kinds of weather. The Original L.L. Bean signature boot features a rubber chain-tread bottom that provides traction while keeping your toes nice and dry.
Lou & Grey
Lou & Grey, the newest addition to the Ann Taylor family, offers a tomboyish mix of activewear, loungewear, and street wear. They feature a solid line of jeans under $100, as well as jumpsuits and joggers for all ages. We love these Cosmic Joggers, which are as comfortable as your favorite pair of PJ pants but won't embarrass you at the grocery store if you run into your neighbor while rocking them.
Like Zara, Mango is a fast-fashion Spanish retailer with a bold perspective. But its pieces feel a bit more classic and less trend-obsessed than Zara, even with fashion drops every two weeks. Take this Essential structured blazer, for instance, which features structured shoulders, a button fastening, and interior lining. It looks equally smart paired with a basic white cotton tee and black jeans as it does with a crisp blouse and slacks.
& Other Stories
& Other Stories, owned by the H&M Group, is beloved by industry insiders for its ageless designs, budget-friendly prices, and global design perspective. Their collections come from three ateliers in Paris, Stockholm, and Los Angeles, which is why their looks are so diverse and fresh. This Ruffle Bodice Button Up Blouse from of their French collection, with long button cuffs and gathered shoulders, definitely embodies a certain je ne sais quoi.
Rachel Comey offers the kind of wardrobe pieces you see on influencers—only these ones are ultra wearable. LA and NY-based stylist Jenni Lee says, "The brand has a slightly off-kilter aesthetic, but nothing that would ever make the wearer feel foolish. Instead, the wearer ends up feeling like they possess a secret." We love the Adore Sweatshirt, a fitted crewneck with a raw edge hemline, which adds a bold pop of color to your look.