Aging is a whole lot easier if you avoid these 9 beauty and fashion faux pas for women.

What Not to Attempt After 40

Getting older sucks ass.

After 40, we slow down. There are pains where there were no pains before. And things that we could get away with in our youth? Well, they no longer seem like such great ideas.

For your convenience, I have compiled a list of things that you may not want to attempt after 40. And though I myself do not adopt the “act your age” rule as a lifestyle, I will happily pass down my belly ring to the younger generation. Once I figure out a way to pry it out of my C-section scar, that is.

Nail art. You can tell a woman’s age by her hands, so the last thing you want to do is draw attention to them. If you currently have animal faces, tiger paws, or snake-eyes painted on your fingernails, go pick up your child from the casino daycare, go home, and give those puppies an acid bath.

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The magnifying side of a two-sided mirror. At a certain age, nothing (I repeat—NOTHING) needs to be examined that closely. If you don’t believe me, go get yourself a magnifying mirror and get a good look at your 40-something face. Now pour yourself a glass of Merlot and clean up those glass shards before you end up slitting Mother Nature’s wrists with them.

Face cream. I’m talking about normal face cream here. Face cream for young women. Face cream that does not contain retinol, Vitamin C, green tea, or the semen from an endangered warthog that dwells in the caves of Easter Island. Throw all of that old stuff in the trash, figure out a way to extract collagen directly from the pores of a 22-year-old, tie that bitch down, and go all The Walking Dead on her.

Tattoos. I may or may not have one (or two) tattoos myself. However, getting a tattoo after the age of 40 is ill-advised for two reasons: 1) Your skin will continue to sag, causing the tiger on your stomach to eventually look like his head was run over by a semi-truck, and 2) The odds of a tattoo artist fucking with you increase significantly as you age. You don’t need the Chinese symbol for “Soy Sauce” imprinted on your old skin for life, especially when you think it says “Freedom.”

Miniskirts. As a general rule, do not wear skirts above the knee. If you bend over, and there is even the slightest chance that somebody will glimpse your ancient hot pocket? For everyone’s sake, donate that poor skirt to your local middle school. Let’s leave the “rode hard and put away wet” look to Courtney Love, circa 1995.

Bedazzled . . . anything. Please leave rhinestones to the cowboys, and men who wear clothes by Ed Hardy.

Night clubs. C’mon ladies. Let’s leave the clubbing to commando-loving twenty-somethings and Alaskan seal hunters. Girls Night Out should now revolve around drinking too much chardonnay at your neighbor’s house while she tries to sell you a fifth piece of luggage from Thirty-One.

Clothing from Abercrombie and Fitch, Hollister and Urban Outfitters. If you can’t fit a baby stroller down the aisles of a retail store, your ass is too old for their clothing. And let’s be honest—squeezing into clothes made for an 11-year-old gymnast is about as fun as going out for ice cream with Giuliana Rancic.

Over BOTOX-ing. Put your fangs away, ladies. I am all for casual BOTOX-ing. But the Real Housewives of All-of-the-Cities have proven that too much is definitely enough. When you end up with a face that looks like a melted rain boot, it’s time to pump the brakes.

Shit. Now, looking back at all that I’ve written, I think I’ve just accidentally described Dolly Parton. And I love Dolly Parton. And to quote Gloria Steinem: ‪”Whatever you want to do, just do it . . . making a damn fool of yourself is absolutely essential.” Maybe I’ll get that tattoo after all. We could all use a little more soy sauce in this world.

9 Beauty & Fashion Faux Pas for Women Over 40. Listen up ladies, here's all you need to age gracefully and avoid the "rode hard and put away wet" look. mistakes | beauty | aging | trends | forties | women | funny

This original piece by Julie Scagell was written exclusively for In the Powder Rooma division of Hold My Purse Productions, LLC. 

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A twelve year veteran in the mother industry, Julie has recently added writer to her resume. In addition to a full time job, she is part time taxi driver, laundry folder, booger picker, and wine connoisseur. She has a Masters in Psychology which has proved useless in trying to understand her preteen daughter. She lives in Minnesota with her husband, 3 children, and ever growing tribe of pets. She has the attention span of a gnat, zero sense of direction and loses at least 3 things every day. Except for a minor situation at a county fair, her children are not on the short list of items she’s lost. She is extremely proud of this. You can find her writing on, on Facebook or Twitter @74amb. She has been published on Scary Mommy, The Mid, Indie Chicks (among others). She is also proud to be a cadre writer for BLUNTmoms and is a contributor to TODAY Show Parenting Team.

Keep the conversation going...



  1. CJ says

    I have to say I’m a little disappointed with the age-shaming of this article (and, no, I am not over 40). There are plenty of 40-somethings– and older!– who can beautifully pull off nail art (just look at the gorgeous selection offered by Jamberry!), trendy clothing, and even tasteful tattoos. Many of them don’t even need expensive specialty creams!! Shame on you, Mamapedia, for taking cheap shots. Your humor missed the mark this time.

  2. says

    I’m 50, a musician, and I do/wear some of these things, but I think this is hysterical! So many stellar one-liners. Now I just need to work the phrase “ancient hot pocket” into a conversation.