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Summer means more relaxed days and casual get-togethers with friends. Whether it is summer Fridays at your office or impromptu road trips, summer requires a different wardrobe. Your days of cut-off denim and a bikini top may be over, but that doesn't mean you can't have fun with stylish summer fashion.

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Pick something you love

For many people, summer always brings a hint of nostalgia. While what you wear may change, you can recreate your favorite looks with updated styles. Summer wardrobe choices are generally more casual, so don't be afraid to substitute a tank for a button-down blouse or long, loose-fitting shorts for pants.

Trends that instantly date you, such as capris, are easily updated. While pants that hit your lower calf are out of fashion, pants that are cropped above the ankle are fresh and in-style.

Mature woman walking dog. jacoblund / Getty Images
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Don't hide your body

If your summer wardrobe isn't much different than your wardrobe the rest of the year, you are missing out on some fun. It is easy to look at traditional summer clothing, like tank tops, and assume they are only for younger folks. It isn't the style as much as the cut that makes or breaks a look.

Someone barely out of their teens may be comfortable in a low-quality tank that barely grazes their waistband. As you get older, plan to spend a bit more. A well-made tank top will have a hem that stays in place, eliminating the need to constantly tug it down, and the straps are wide enough and placed properly to avoid constantly tucking in your bra straps.

Mature woman wearing tank top. monkeybusinessimages / Getty Images
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Prepare for temperature swings

Just because your office stays icy, there is no reason you can't dress for summer. Keep a cardigan or casual-cut blazer on-hand to pull on when the temperature gets uncomfortable. Making the trek to work in clothes that will keep you comfortable in air-conditioned office spaces is sure to leave you arriving sweaty and frazzled.

Senior African American woman on a swing. FatCamera / Getty Images
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Check your footwear

As much as you hate to admit it, it may be time to drop the flip-flops. Some people are able to wear them indefinitely, but if you start to notice foot or ankle pain, try switching to more supportive sandals. The market has improved drastically in the past several years, and the options extend beyond orthopedic comfort brands.

Woman's feet as she waters plant. nicolas_ / Getty Images
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Protect your skin

Years of tanning in your teens and early twenties may start to catch up with you as you approach 50. That doesn't mean you should throw in the towel. If you're unhappy with your skin, talk to your doctor about options. Be aware, however, that many of these treatments make the skin more sensitive to sun exposure and are best done during cooler weather.

You are never too old to start using sunscreen. Apply it every day to every exposed area. Don't miss easily overlooked areas such as the backs of your ears and along your hairline.

Don't be afraid to experiment

You may think that by the time you reach 50, you're settled into your style. True, if you have a look you love, stick with it. If, however, you notice a trend that looks fun, don't be afraid to jump in. Loose-fitting shorts with a blazer to work or a high ponytail rather than how you normally pull your hair back? Give them a try; you may be shocked at how much you love the new look.

Woman in casual summer clothes. solarisimages / Getty Images
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Take comfort cues from youngsters

Skirts and dresses are cool yet pulled-together options for many activities. The problem with these clothes in hot weather is chafing that can occur. Pick up on a trick the younger set uses and pull on a pair of bike shorts under your skirt. They protect the skin, keeping your thighs chafe-free.

Several senior women walking together. SolStock / Getty Images
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Wear what you love

Wearing what's in fashion shouldn't be your only goal. Staying up on the latest trends allows you to keep your look current, but never wear something that makes you uncomfortable. On the other hand, if you have something you love that seems a bit outdated, look for ways to modernize its appeal. Would fresh accessories or a different choice in shoes create a more fashionable look? Don't be afraid to give it a try.

Woman riding her bike along the beach. RelaxFoto.de / Getty Images
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A cute bag is key

Nothing ages your outfit quicker than an over-sized, over-stuffed leather bag in the summer. Make the switch to a lighter silhouette and pare down the contents so you can go with a smaller bag. While straw totes, raffia bags, and canvas are all lightweight and summer-appropriate, leather can look nice as well if you switch to a lighter color and slimmer design.

Close-up of woman carrying summer purse. dramalens / Getty Images
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Sunglasses are an investment

If grabbing sunglasses from the rack at your local box drugstore, a gas station is common, now is the time to upgrade. If you wear glasses full-time, invest in a pair of prescription sunglasses. If you don't rely on glasses, make sure the sunglasses you buy block 99 percent of ultraviolet rays and wrap around the eye to ensure maximum protection.

Three senior women wearing sunglasses and blowing confetti. wundervisuals / Getty Images

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