You have turned 50, do you need to cut your hair short?
Many women ask me the question, especially since I turned 50 last year, as to whether it is better for them to cut their hair short when they are older. (I did go the chop late into my 40’s, but this was a style and life choice and not due to my hair’s health or any belief that I should. Having thick hair, I found it liberating to go short after many years of having to have a weekly blow wave at my salon.)
Do we need to cut our hair short after 50?
“Noooooo,” said Ross. (OMG, I feel like we are in a ‘Friends’ episode, playing Rachel and Ross.) “Cutting your hair short as you age is an old myth.”
“Back in the day before the brilliant products we have available today, such as Olaplex, it was difficult for women over 50 to maintain their hair as it would go very limp and dry.
We now see many celebrities over 50, such our gorgeous friends Lisa Kudrow and Courtney Cox (Phoebe and Monica) and Jennifer Anniston (Rachel), who is approaching 50, all with long hair. Madonna, Elle McPherson and Kristy Brinkley are three other older women who have maintained gorgeous long locks during and after menopause.
What happens to our hair during menopause?
Your hair is fed through your blood vessels and the chemicals and hormones in your blood change with menopause, affecting your hair. During menopause, you will notice your hair is not as soft and pliable as it was in younger days. It doesn’t retain moisture as well, it’s not naturally shiny and doesn’t have the healthy feeling of our youth. It can also be thinner, and growth can be slower. This doesn’t mean your hair isn’t healthy though, but that the cosmetic appearance is different.
Is there a grey hair in there?
Do you remember the first time you saw a grey hair? Most of us pulled them out and hoped they wouldn’t return. But then one day, much to our dismay, we had to acknowledge that the grey hairs had multiplied and were now a part of us.
When your hair goes grey, the cuticle layer becomes denser and more course which prevents moisture from being absorbed into the hair cortex. This makes it look and feel a lot more like wire.
What do we need to do?
If you want to maintain your long locks in your 50’s, it is imperative to have a program in place. This includes in-house treatments at your favourite salon and maintaining a recommended home treatment by your stylist. You can also help to maintain your hair from the inside by eating healthy foods, which feeds your hair growth with vitamins and minerals. Don’t forget to help your whole body to stay hydrated, including your hair, by drinking several glasses of water per day.
Keep in mind too when styling at home that any loss of hair density means that you have less strands to distribute the heat from your curling iron or straightener. The heat you once used may damage your hair if you don’t compensate by lowering the heat settings for any of your hair appliances.
How have you noticed your hair changes as you have matured?
Ross Lemon has been a hair stylist for over fifteen years and is a senior stylist for Tellish Hair studio. Ross has a passion for colour and in his spare time he teaches hair dressers colour with Lakmé Academy at Haircare Australia.
Carolyn Rowland is a qualified NLP Master Therapist, Advanced Practitioner of Matrix Therapies, Time Line Therapist, Practitioner of Hypnotherapy, has a Diploma for Business and Life Coaching and A Professional Image Stylist. Carolyn is happily married to her husband Simon, and raised four beautiful children, who are now young adults and a teenager.
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