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There are style secrets that some women just seem to know. Some women embrace their lives and always look fabulous in their clothes. Age is just a number, and they wear it confidently. The truth is, there are no secrets, just a few basic guidelines to remember about evolving your style. Making the right clothing choices prevents you from looking older than you are. These simple rules will help you enhance your silhouette, add sophistication, and still create a look that is uniquely you.

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Choose Fashionable, Leg-Enhancing Shoes

The right shoe can make your legs look longer and slimmer. Some women opt for comfort over style as they get older. But the wide range of styles available makes it easier to find both. Shoes with cutouts and open toes are fashionable and add some youthful flair to an outfit. Avoid horizontal ankle straps and chunky heels that make your legs look shorter. If you can’t wear heels, try a classy wedge. Choose knee boots that elongate your legs rather than ankle boots that diminish leg length. As for shoe color, nude shades enhance the slender illusion.

leg slimming shoes grinvalds / Getty Images
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Let Go of Your Past

It’s easy to get in a clothing rut. The problem arises when you don’t realize you’re in one. If you ask stylists their views on the most common mistake women make with their individual style, they’ll tell you that some of us tend to hang on to a look from a previous decade. But just because you looked great in that oversized baggy outfit and branded gear from the 1990s doesn’t mean it makes sense now. Avoid clothing that is too tight, too baggy, or has a print that is blatantly decade-related. Throw out those hippie skirts and distressed denim jeans.

previous decade branded clothing Eva-Katalin / Getty Images
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Stop Going Back to Black

Black is classic. Black is slimming. And, yes, black is always fashionable. But wearing it, head-to-toe can make you look older than you are. The color black, especially when worn near the face, enhances lines under the chin and shadows around the eyes, say color consultants. It flattens your skin tone and accentuates dark patches that occur naturally in older skin. Wear black, but avoid high collars. Elevate your favorite monochromatic outfit with bright colors. Try a jewel-toned jacket, or if you prefer quieter colors, choose one with an interesting texture, like tweed.

black clothing monochromatic outfit yacobchuk / Getty Images
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Avoid Those Enticing Trends

Fashion shows, red carpets, and catwalks inspire much of the clothing women buy. Every season, there is a new aesthetic that seems to take over. Be picky when it comes to choosing trendier items and wear them sparingly. Instead, choose tailored clothing with timeless, classic styles in quality fabrics. Most fashion trends look good only on specific body types, and they don’t last. Clothing is an investment. If it’s not flattering and doesn’t make you feel confident when you put it on, don’t waste your money on it, no matter how popular the trend is on Instagram at the moment.

fashion show trend catwalk webphotographeer / Getty Images
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Make Sure the Clothing Fits

Women who try to hide their body shape by wearing shapeless clothes tend to look older instead of slimmer. Waist-nipping dresses enhance your silhouette. Skinny jeans add length to your body and adapt to just about any occasion if you find the right style. Clothes that fit well aren’t necessarily tight and should never be uncomfortable. They can accentuate your favorite features and draw attention away from those you aren’t crazy about.

clothing fit waist woman NeonShot / Getty Images
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Adapt Your Skirt Length

Hemlines can be confusing. The general rule is, with casual or daywear, the longer the skirt, the frumpier you look, especially as you get older. Most women look best with lengths that are either slightly above the knee, slightly below, or in the middle. Your hemline should land at the slimmest part of these three points. Remember, some fabrics, such as rayon, cause a skirt to decrease in length once you put it on. While some hem lengths age you, shorter, tighter skirts don’t flatter most women’s body shapes either.

hemlines lengths knee skirt Orbon Alija / Getty Images
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Step Away From Jersey

It’s comfortable and looks beautiful on a hanger, yet it can add years to your appearance. Jersey material only works if it is draped or ruched. Clingy doesn’t usually indicate that a garment is well-fitted, and jersey fabric draws attention to every part of your torso. Clothing should skim your curves, not latch on to them and announce their arrival. Try double-knitted jersey instead if you like the stretch and comfort. It’s easier to find tailored options that create a more attractive silhouette.

jersey material fabric clingy Chris_Tefme / Getty Images
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Accentuate Your Best Parts

Many women feel that once they reach a certain age, it’s time to cover up instead of showing off their assets. Hiding your body from head to toe under layers of clothing adds years to your appearance. There’s nothing wrong with a bit of cleavage. But if you tend to be a bit more conservative, don’t be afraid to show off your neck, arms, shoulders, or legs. Choose great-quality, beautiful clothing that enhances the body parts you’re most proud of.

best parts arms shoulders LumiNola / Getty Images
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Toss Out That Old, Comfy Bra

Breasts change with age. They lose firmness and shrink in size. Most women think if they wore a 36B in their 20s, they still wear the same size in their 40s. According to statistics, 80% of women wear the wrong bra size. It’s not the size, but the fit that matters. And as most women know, size and fit aren’t always standard from one store to the next. Some women resort to wearing an old bra because it’s comfortable. The problem is, it probably doesn’t provide the necessary support. No matter how stylish your ensemble is, the wrong bra can ruin the overall aesthetic. Try buying a bra from a boutique with professionals who can properly measure you for the right fit.

support measure professional bra izusek / Getty Images
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Adapt Your Clothing Colors

Just because you love a color doesn’t mean it looks good on you. As we age, skin colors tend to cool. Light colors don’t always look as attractive as dark ones on most women. Pastels are usually too similar to women’s skin colors as they age. Wearing these lighter colors tends to give a washed-out appearance. Turquoise adds glow, and a medium-red violet or toned-down fuschia creates a more youthful look. Women who have a touch of purple or violet in their hair color should try a periwinkle color, which works well with all skin tones.

colors youthful turquoise woman Eva-Katalin / Getty Images

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