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Best Tressed: Easy, Pretty Hairstyles

Want to save time and money? Look younger and thinner? Mission accomplished with fall's four prettiest (and easiest) hairstyles.

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Low-Maintenance Hair With Layers
Sarah Kehoe
Sarah Kehoe
Sarah Kehoe
Sarah Kehoe
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The Best Budget 'Do

"Allover layers instantly make long hair look pulled together, plus they let you go months without a trim," says New York City salon owner Mark Garrison.

Low-Maintenance Mane

  • Shoulder length or longer
  • Layers from mid-length to ends
  • Long bangs -- or none at all
  • Straight to wavy texture

Styling Secrets
A trim every six weeks can be costly; at $40 plus tip, it could set you back about $400 a year. Go every four to six months with this style and a little TLC. Apply a mask (such as Garnier Fructis 3-Minute Undo: Dryness Reversal Treatment, $5.99, drugstores) weekly, and a heat-protecting mousse (check the label) before blow-drying with a round brush or using hot rollers.

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Save 20 Minutes Every Morning

"A short bob will play up your hair's natural texture, making styling a snap," Garrison says.

Tousled in No Time

  • Chin length
  • Few or no layers
  • No bangs
  • Wavy to curly texture

Stylish Secrets
Take short hair from sporty to sexy by mixing equal dollops of conditioner and gel (a good combo: Herbal Essences Hydralicious Self-Targeting Conditioner, $2.99, and L'Oreal Paris Vive Pro Glossy Style Glossy Volume Gel, $4.99, both at drugstores). Scrunch through damp hair. Air-dry or use a diffuser; try claw attachments (in the DevaCurl DevaFuser Kit, $39.95, for more defined coils.

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Take 5 Years off Your Face

"Bangs are like Botox, hiding lines, while length and layers add youthfulness," Garrison says.

Fresh Fringe

  • Shoulder length or longer
  • Full, textured bangs (a blunt cut is too bulky)
  • Layers from the chin down
  • Straight to wavy texture

Styling Secrets
Apply a smoothing serum (such as John Frieda Frizz-Ease Secret Weapon, $5.99, drugstores) all over. Starting with the underneath layers and working your way up, blow-dry section by section with a medium round brush; wind ends upward for bounce. Finally, place the brush under your bangs, put the blower's nozzle directly above them, and dry until they're smooth.

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Look 10 Pounds Thinner

"Sleek, mid-length strands lengthen your face, making you look leaner," Garrison says.

Slimming Trim

  • Collarbone length
  • Slightly angled bangs
  • Few layers; choppy ends
  • Straight texture

Styling Secrets
Distribute a dime-size dab of straightening balm (such as Pantene Pro-V Nature Fusion Smoothing Creme, $5.99, drugstores) from roots to ends, then blow-dry in sections with a paddle brush. (Or use a multitasking blower and brush such as Conair Infiniti Hot Air Styler, $55, Whisk a flatiron through top layers and finish with anti-frizz serum.

Originally published in FITNESS magazine, September 2009.

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What do you think? Review this slideshow!

cookanimated wrote:

They are nice hairstyles, yes...but is it their hair or weaves? Might be easier, but weaves are costly. What happened to natural?

3/2/2012 10:16:15 PM Report Abuse
Indy1212 wrote:

Why can't women 50+ wear longer hair? After all, we WERE created with hair that grows. Who is to say what is attractive? I've seen women with long gray hair, and if the hair is healthy and well maintained...what is the problem?!?! Trends come and go, by the time a woman hits her 50's...she should have enough self confidence to wear her hair however she likes! She's earned that right!

9/23/2011 10:57:25 AM Report Abuse
limam11 wrote:

PS mmmalco, about the clothes.. what if you can't wear MISSES sized jeans, etc? Some of us have to wear JUNIORS sizing which means JUNIOR styles too... everyone is too uptight on this thread... You're only as OLD as you FEEL! GEEZ again!

9/23/2011 10:03:24 AM Report Abuse
limam11 wrote:

I am 43 and my hair is down to my waist, with almost no gray and I do not color it.. not yet anyway! payounger should try to ACT her age and stop making assumptions. for the rest... try HENNA and INDIGO for coloring and DO IT YOURSELF.. GEEZ!

9/23/2011 10:00:32 AM Report Abuse
mmmalco wrote:

payounger I am an older woman and I feel that I have the right to look anyway I want within reason and if I want to color my hair for a more youthful look then you or no one else should have anything to say about it. It is not any of your business. I think that a woman with long hair no matter what her age is attractive as long as she takes care of her hair. I don't think that she should try to look like a teen as far as her clothes but leave us alone. we just want to be beautiful also!

3/17/2010 11:39:44 AM Report Abuse
angel2172000 wrote:

I am an "older" woman and my hair is as long if not longer then the first slide,very very few grays almost unnoticeable and i think one should wear their hair however it makes them feel good unless numerous people say ewwwww do something with that hair!

3/9/2010 10:03:11 AM Report Abuse
SaintKat wrote:

Beautiful hairstyles and yes please, I'd love to see some dedicated to our more mature ladies. No matter what you're age, everyone wants to look their best!

12/4/2009 02:21:02 PM Report Abuse
payounger wrote:

Ah vanity vanity embrace your age why are women always trying to look younger than they are I'm 43 and have a full head of beautiful gray hair I've earned each and everyone and proud of it

10/24/2009 09:39:55 PM Report Abuse
Roxyralyn wrote:

Well if your 50+ ignore this slide show it's not for you, their just trying to help woman I guess only us young women then save our hair maintnence money. Geezz I think this was a great article. Thank you for posting it for us!!

10/24/2009 01:04:00 AM Report Abuse
mleconey3611215 wrote:

Beautiful hair in photo #1 but I can't possibly go months without a color touchup! Be realistic for older women!

10/23/2009 10:44:59 PM Report Abuse
rdkibby wrote:

yes what about the 50+

10/23/2009 10:05:37 PM Report Abuse
asalazar34 wrote:


10/23/2009 02:00:24 PM Report Abuse
precioustones wrote:


10/23/2009 01:50:33 PM Report Abuse

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FITNESS Magazine, September 2009
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