Short hairstyles for women over 50—35+ ideas to inspire your next look

Our expert edit of the best short hairstyles for women over 50

helen mirren on the red carpet with one of the best short hairstyles for women over 50, a feathered short crop
(Image credit: Future/Getty images)

When it comes to short hairstyles for women over 50, we should first stress that reaching a 'certain age' does not mean you need to cut your hair to a certain length. Women of all ages can look great with hair of any length, color, or style—whatever makes you feel confident and fabulous is the way to go.

But if you are looking for short easy hairstyles that will save you time with washing, drying, and styling, then you’ve come to the right place. “There are so many incredible mature, short-haired icons out there that you can use as hair inspiration,” says legendary hairdresser George Northwood, who counts Megan, the Duchess of Sussex amongst his famous clientele. “The ones that stand apart for me are Helen Mirren and Judi Dench. I love a cropped style like Judi’s razor pixie haircut.”

Judi Dench short hairstyles for women over 50

(Image credit: Getty Images)

The key to the best short hairstyles for women over 50 is maintaining that fresh look. “If you decide to go for a shorter style, it’s key to maintain it so it always looks sharp and sophisticated,” George confirms. This is particularly true if you go for a bob with bangs or other bangs hairstyles. A trim to tidy the ends every four to six weeks is a good start. Picking up the proper tools, like the best hairdryers for your hair type, will always be helpful for day-to-day styling.

The best short hairstyles for women over 50

As well as the iconic short hairstyles that our expert Northwood loves, there are so many brilliant, famous women to take style cues from when it comes to short hair. Jamie Lee Curtis, Jada Pinkett Smith, Halle Berry, and Jane Fonda are just a few stars who have proven that short hair is a fabulous and flattering way to go. 

Ans it isn't just celebrities we look to for inspiration. We've rounded up the best short hairstyles for women over 50 on real women, from bob hairstyles to natural hairstyles and ultra-short crops—the choice is all yours.

Bob hairstyles for women over 50

There's a reason why bobs have stood the test of time and remain one of the most popular short hairstyles for women over 50—they're so versatile. Depending on the exact length you pick a bob is just long enough to be swept into an updo or styled with the best curling iron, but short enough to remain relatively fuss-free. 

1. The slightly stacked bob

Face shape: round or oval | Hair type: fine to medium


2. The rounded bob with bangs

Face shape: square or round | Hair type: fine to medium


3. The blunt bob

Face shape: any, particularly round | Hair type: medium to thick


4. Natural bob with bangs

Face shape: oval, heart, round | Hair type: curly, coily


5. The '20s-inspired bob

Face shape: oval or round | Hair type: fine to medium


6. The French bob

Face shape: any, particularly round or oval | Hair type: medium to thick


7. The graduated undercut bob

Face shape: round or oval | Hair type: fine to medium


8. Blunt bob with bangs

Face shape: oval, heart | Hair type: medium-thick


9. Highlighted bob with bangs

Face shape: any, particularly round | Hair type: medium


10. Curly bob

Face shape: any, particularly oval | Hair type: curly, coily


Pixie crops for women over 50

Pixie styles are often associated with style icons from decades gone by, like Twiggy and Mia Farrow, but pixie cuts also make super chic short hairstyles for women over 50. Pixie styles help you save time on styling and money on the best hair styling products, and whether you choose a French-inspired cut or feathered style, the possibilities are endless. 


11. The feathered pixie cut

Face shape: square or heart | Hair type: fine to medium


12. The thick on top pixie

Face shape: round or oval | Hair type: medium to thick


13. Side parted pixie 

Face shape: heart, round or oval | Hair type: medium to thick


14. The choppy layered pixie

Face shape: round or oval | Hair type: medium to thick


15. The rounded pixie with bangs

Face shape: square or heart | Hair type: fine to medium


16. Natural pixie hairstyle

Face shape: oval, heart| Hair type: curly to coily


17. The pixie with spiked layers

Face shape: square or oval | Hair type: fine to medium


18. The French pixie 

Face shape: round or heart | Hair type: fine to medium


19. Long layered pixie 

Face shape: square or oval | Hair type: fine to medium


20. Pixie with added volume

Face shape: heart, square or oval | Hair type: medium

Natural hairstyles for women over 50

Many women are choosing to embrace and make the most of their curls and coils, and no wonder. From curly hairstyles to twist-outs and braided hairstyles, beautiful natural texture makes for some of the best short hairstyles for women over 50 around. 

21. The short natural curls

Face shape: any, particularly oval | Hair type: curly, coily


22. The tapered natural style

Face shape: round or oval | Hair type: curly, coily


23. The super short crop

Face shape: square or oval | Hair type: curly, coily


24. Graduated natural bob

Face shape: oval, heart, square | Hair type: curly, coily


25. The natural curls and coils

Face shape: any | Hair type: curly, coily


26. The teeny weeny afro (TWA)

Face shape: round or oval | Hair type: curly, coily


27. The natural pixie

Face shape: any, particularly round | Hair type: curly


28. Highlighted long-on-top crop

Face shape: heart or oval | Hair type: curly, coily


29. The long natural curls 

Face shape: round or oval | Hair type: curly, coily


30. The natural afro

Face shape: any, particularly heart | Hair type: curly, coily

Layered hairstyles for women over 50

Layered hairstyles are a great way to add fullness, which is great news if you have experienced thinning hair. Fine hair benefits from layering towards the ends, while thicker hair can go for lots of choppy layers throughout. Knowing how to style layered hair means keeping in mind your natural texture —lots of layers will enhance curlier hair—but your hairdresser will be able to advise. 


31. The short shag cut with bangs 

Face shape: square or heart | Hair type: fine to medium


32. The tousled layered style

Face shape: round or heart | Hair type: fine to medium


33. The loose layered curls

Face shape: square or heart | Hair type: medium to thick


34. The layered lob

Face shape: any, particularly oval | Hair type: medium


35. The soft layers

Face shape: any, particularly oval | Hair type: medium to thick


36. The choppy layers

Face shape: round or oval | Hair type: fine to medium


37. The feathered lob

Face shape: square or heart | Hair type: medium to thick


38. The layered crop

Face shape: any, particularly oval | Hair type: medium to thick


Styling tips for short hairstyles for women over 50

As well as regular trims, some styling tips will help you get the most out of your new ‘do. “If you’ve recently opted for a shorter style, you definitely need to invest in a good set of styling products to maintain it,” George tells us.

Along with tools such as the best hair straighteners or best curling iron, there are a few products that are great for enhancing new short styles. “First and foremost, I would recommend a texturizing spray, or something that will add some body and texture to the hair.” We find the best dry shampoo can make an excellent texturizing product too. 

Leave-in creams are a great daily product for curly hair especially if you’re embracing your natural curl type with your new short ‘do. George adds, “A good finishing cream will also work wonders in removing any frizz or flyaways for a super sleek finish,” advises Northwood.


woman&home thanks George Northwood for his time and expertise

Lucy is a UK-based beauty journalist who has written for the likes of Marie Claire, Cosmopolitan, OK!, Women's Health and more, as well as contributing to woman&home. Her work covers everything from expert skin and haircare tips to the latest product launches and the show-stopping beauty looks spotted backstage at London Fashion Week.


During her career she's interviewed some seriously famous faces, from Little Mix to Drag Race royalty The Vivienne, as well as chatting to the industry's leading hairdressers, dermatologists and make-up artists. When she's not got beauty on the brain you'll probably find her in the company of dogs, reading, or being shamed by Netflix's "are you still watching?" message. You can follow her on Instagram at @lucyabbers.