What Does Aging Gracefully Mean?

What Does Aging Gracefully Mean?

I took my grandson to a Christmas event yesterday. It was for grandparents and grandchildren only so I was surrounded by a lot of older women. As I looked about the room I was struck by how differently women are choosing to age.

That difference is also reflected in the media who are finally using older models. Brands have gotten the memo – we’re a large demographic with dollars to spend and they’re responding by using models that will appeal to us.

Many of these models have had “work” done and others are going it au naturel. Women are as diverse as the models we see. Some of us are fighting the signs of aging with every option available and others are letting nature take its course so these models represent us. Is one more graceful than the other?

Many models have stunning gray or silver hair and others will color it until the day they die. Just like us.

Many are having injections and no-downtime procedures to refresh their look. Just like us.

Many models have neck and full-on facelifts. Just like us.

Are these women trying to fool anyone into thinking they’re younger than their years? Are they not aging gracefully? Or are they doing what they can to make their outside more closely resemble how they feel on the inside?

Having a cosmetic procedure, injection, or laser peel is not a moral failure nor does it prevent you from aging gracefully. It’s a personal choice and your business alone.

As I sat with foils on my head at the salon last week, a woman my age helped her mother enter the salon. The mother was using a walker which was holding her oxygen tank. She was clearly a regular and chatted everyone up as she got her dark brown roots touched up. Was she attempting to fool anyone about her age? No, she was 96 and liked her hair dark…end of story. When she looked in the mirror she was pleased to see dark hair.

We need to support each other’s choices, just as we do with fashion and makeup. I love to wear makeup. Others feel we should wear less as we get older. Neither is wrong. It’s simply a choice.

Aging gracefully is a personal journey and there’s no shame in aging the way you want.

What do you think?

Please share in the comments.

Are you supportive of other women?


Thanks for reading ladies and have a great day!

This post may contain affiliate links which won’t change your price but will share some commission.


  1. DeDe
    November 11, 2020 / 8:43 pm

    Comparison is the thief of happiness! My mother passed away young, my grandmothers were gone before I was born. 4 Sisters are all older than me – 10-20 years! So I really have no idea what aging is suppose to look like in my family. I choose to do myself. Some days I may put more effort in than others, but I am comfortable in my own skin. Most days I still feel 16, others maybe 25! But I never feel 68, whatever that looks or feels like!

  2. Victoria
    August 5, 2020 / 7:02 pm

    It’s wonderful that we can act whatever age we feel. Our mother’s and grandmother’s had more restrictions. They wore house dresses and looked old in their 50’s. I have been blessed with good genes and at 75 could pass for at least 10 years younger. I am glad to be able to wear stylish clothes and color my hair. I believe you are the age you feel and I’m still having fun.

  3. Ali Davis
    October 24, 2019 / 6:55 am

    My motto….how old would you be, if you didn’t know the day you were born.

  4. Georgina
    August 24, 2019 / 5:16 pm

    Great article. I have been completely gray for some years. It’s a pretty silver and goes with my coloring. BUT it does make me feel old. Not sure what I’m going to do yet. One thing for sure, my eye lids are not drooping in sync. One is more droopy than the other. This just has to go. If things are going to droop they can at least droop evenly! ?

  5. Kathleen
    July 11, 2019 / 4:34 pm

    I’m so happy to find all you fabulous ladies! I’m 60 and decided to lighten my hair recently so my gray isn’t so glaring!! My stylist is the best and she does a great job. I removed all the dark brown I’d been putting in for the last 20 yrs. ( to match my natural) Now I just keep a temp color toner in my hair and I love it!!! I respect choices my friends make. I promote us mature ladies giving our younger friends honest and REAL advice when asked. They need us and our experience …. be honest and helpful !!

    • July 11, 2019 / 7:15 pm

      Welcome, Kathleen! I’m so happy you’re here.

  6. Carol Ann Harlos
    June 26, 2019 / 2:32 pm

    Everyone’s journey is different. Each person has their own persona. I became a bronze redhead. It’s not to impress anyone else. It’s simply the way I present myself. It’s no different from a younger woman who has long hair, short hair, a color different from her own, wears eye makeup or not, and so forth.

  7. Denys
    April 5, 2019 / 12:17 pm

    Live and let live. Freedom. Do not judge. After all who are we to judge others we do not,know anything about their own struggles. Superb articles.

  8. Rebecca
    January 29, 2019 / 6:46 am

    I am so excited to read all these comments. It makes me know that I am not alone in my quest to still look good in my seventies.

  9. Jean
    January 6, 2019 / 7:05 pm

    Jennifer, I inherited a couple of traits from both my parents: slow to wrinkle, slow to gray. But eventually … Though some of my friends have chosen to stop covering their gray, I think when the time comes I will probably disguise it with some highlighting at least! I’ve never worn much makeup, usually just mascara and lipstick, but that could change. I’m into nutrition, eating well and taking supplements, and exercising daily. I figure, Take care of the inside, and the outside will take care of itself! Surgery scares me, so I doubt I’ll ever be tempted to have plastic surgery, but you never know. I have friends who’ve had it, and that’s okay. Like you, I think everyone needs to do whatever makes them feel good about themselves. And whether you go natural or get all the help that’s available, it’s all good. I feel very sad for the commenter Leslie, but I don’t mean that in a critical way. She was very honest, and we can only hope we will be able to handle the aging process. We all face it for the first time, and nothing can really prepare us for it.

    • January 7, 2019 / 7:55 am

      Thanks for sharing Jean. You’re so right, nothing can prepare us. I am aging faster in some places than others which I find perplexing. I support all women’s choices.

  10. Leslie
    December 22, 2018 / 6:53 am

    Goodness, where do I begin? At this point, I’m not doing any enhancing for myself but I’m open to it. Truly and honestly the biggest thing that is holding me back is the cost factor. I think that is the case for many and we just make our minds up to just ‘age gracefully’. I have changed since I was forty and I know for certain I will change when I’m in my 60’s. I know this bc I’ve watched my own mother age. She is my mother and I love her beyond all things however, in the world’s definition, she is no longer beautiful and I really fear that. My mother never had any enhancements accept to spend a small fortune on over-the-counter beauty items at her local department store. That little charge card came in real handy!! If beauty medical procedures were that simple too, I believe she and other would do the same. To me, it really comes down to economics…that simple. I know in my heart that by going natural; I will no longer be beautiful, one day. The end, plain and simply put!!!

    • December 22, 2018 / 8:23 am

      Thank you for sharing honestly Leslie. I think you’re right about the cost because a facelift is very expensive now. It wasn’t that crazy when my Mom had hers.

    • Rachel Strachan
      July 9, 2020 / 12:12 pm

      How can you say she is not beautiful? Each age it’s own beauty, she has lived a full n eventful life, each line n wrinkle will testify that. Let real life show in our face, we’ve earned it! As for you, are beautiful now and always will be. Me? 67, and do the best I can with wot I’ve got!!!!

  11. December 21, 2018 / 6:17 am

    This was very well said! We need to mind our own business and age in the manner that feels right to us. I remember having botox for the first time at 45 and was so embarrassed to tell anyone for fear of judgement, now I don’t care who know! Thank you!

  12. Susan Gowan
    December 19, 2018 / 6:29 am

    Great post. I let my hair go gray three years ago out of necessity. I had broken my foot and needed more low maintenance at the time. Until half a year ago I kept the gray but started having lowlights put in by my stylist. Love them and they do make me feel younger. At 68, every little bit helps. Aging gracefully is a personal thing for sure.

    • December 19, 2018 / 7:34 am

      Doing what makes us feel best is paramount. I’m getting lowlights too because being too pale washes me out.

  13. Penelope
    December 19, 2018 / 5:47 am

    Perhaps aging well is a matter of attitude. My mother lived by the philosophy of the Serenity Prayer.. to have strength to to change what you can, the courage to accept what you can’t, –
    and the wisdom to know the difference. She was a most gracious woman. I have read that wisdom requires empathy and it has been my observation that the quality of and capacity for empathy either increases or diminishes as we age. We either increase in empathy, and therefore in wisdom, or we become resentful and limited. Wisdom and empathy provide expansion of self and to me, this is how we age gracefully and well, no matter what our outward appearance.

    • December 19, 2018 / 7:33 am

      I love your philosophy Penelope. So beautiful said.

  14. Sandra Thorpe
    December 17, 2018 / 12:41 pm

    I am 81 years old, as of this month! I feel about 40 and have colored my hair since I ‘really’ was 40!
    I love ‘foils’ and will continue to dye until I die!!! 🙂
    I have a gentleman friend, age 88 (he thinks about 50) . We are having a marvelous time together!
    I am grateful for energy, basic good health and will enjoy each day for as long as possible!

    I love reading your blog each day! You are wonderful (I love your positive attitude) and the information you give to us!
    Keep blogging and I intend to keep reading. 🙂

    • December 17, 2018 / 10:10 pm

      Thanks so much Sandra! I’m glad you’re here.

  15. Allison
    December 16, 2018 / 8:27 pm

    Yes we need to support each other on our aging journeys. Although ad companies have jumped on the pro aging wagon I notice the older models are mostly ( unless it’s a drug ad) slim, healthy looking and fit. I also notice that many ‘older’ female models are youthful looking women with grey hair! No lines, wrinkles or crepe-y skin??? photo shopped? …Do they think that silver hair = old? Yet I know many women in their forties who are greying and others like the 96 yr old dying their hair.
    My advise is pay attention to your physical health, have your blood work reviewed as well as blood pressure. Pay attention to your mental health, cultivate friends of all ages, volunteer, learn a new language, be kind. Our bodies will age regardless of Botox, hair dye or surgery. It’s how we view the world around us and the love we give back that keeps us ageless and eternally youthful.

    • Terri
      June 20, 2020 / 11:32 am

      I so agree with you! I certainly want to look my best and, by that, I do not mean younger, just my best. My health is my first priority and the rest comes after. Health is wealth.

  16. December 16, 2018 / 4:19 pm

    I support people doing what makes them happy. Good for the 96 year old lady! I hope I have half her moxy at that age. And you look terrific in foils. Xx

  17. beth byrd
    December 16, 2018 / 1:00 pm

    What a wonderful post today, Jennifer. I am of the mind that it is totally up to each of us as to what we want to do when it comes to aging. I make regular appointments at the salon to color my roots, and I work out a couple of times a week to keep the muscles toned. I wear clothing that is more comfortable, don’t stress about the weight gain and try to be at peace at where I am now. When I was younger I was thin and never had a care about weight … that all changed when I hit 50. But, I’m healthy and fit so I’ve come to accept the changes.

  18. Joanna
    December 16, 2018 / 12:14 pm

    I believe we should do what makes us happy. If you’re unhappy with your outward appearance, then fix it. We need to enjoy every day we have on this earth and if plastic surgery or fillers will put that smile on your face, do it! Perhaps, one day….

  19. Kay
    December 16, 2018 / 10:35 am

    I have used an argument with myself for the past 20 years. When I look at my face and see the sagging here and wrinkling there, I tell myself if it gets any worse, I’ll get surgery next year. So far, no surgery. I seem to be accepting the sags and wrinkles as they come. I have always worried most about the neck, but mine still seems to be holding up, literally. I haven’t always been thrilled to catch sight of my grandmother while passing a mirror, but I loved her above all others, and when she passed just shy of 100 years, she was still beautiful to me. How puzzled I would have been if she had had “work done.” She also had the most beautiful snow white hair, and I’m hoping mine will eventually be the same.

  20. December 16, 2018 / 10:33 am

    After living many decades, we deserve to wear what we want and look how we want. Many of us no longer feel the need to please other people, but to be happy and content with who we are. I have always worn makeup and will continue to do so because I think I look better with some makeup than without. I had natural pale blonde hair until my late teens and that’s when I started going blonder, thanks to a store bought product. There were many years when I spent more time on the sun and my hair naturally became blonder. Even now, at almost 72(next month) I color my hair only 3 or 4 times a year. Not only does it lighten up the color, but it gives my fine hair more body and that makes me happy. I don’t think I will ever have any plastic surgery done, but that’s just me. Several of my friends have had work done and that’s great for them, but I can think of many other ways to spend my money that I would enjoy more.
    We are all different and if we choose to color our hair, wear flamboyant makeup or clothing, so be it. Who are we trying to impress? Do what makes YOU happy and feel true to yourself. Not everyone gets to live into their 60’s or beyond. Be healthy and be happy.

  21. Susan
    December 16, 2018 / 9:33 am

    I love this post!! Thank you, Jennifer, for reminding us to support each other and be kind. We should also remember to extend this kindness to ourselves, and watch our own critical self-talk. I color my hair, and plan to for a long time, because of how I feel. When I happen to get a quick glance of myself in a store mirror, I see the basic me I’ve always known, and can go about my day without thinking about “aging.” It’s good for my confidence and mindset. Others may feel exactly the opposite. Let’s give everyone the gift of “you go, girl!”

  22. Sophia Montgomery
    December 16, 2018 / 9:30 am

    Aging gracefully means maintaining good health as much as possible and keeping up with the news.
    If wearing the same lipstick color or hairdo as in high school, move on!! Just got my botox while wearing the right shade of red lipstick.
    Keeping my silver short locks!

  23. Babs
    December 16, 2018 / 9:12 am

    Because of a non diagnosed health issues. I have had to adapt. I need to wear only slacks that pull up, try to limit buttons on my clothing. I now have Tailor’s bunions on both feet which means I have to wear a wide shoe and good ones. Read expensive. I have two pair of shoes and I’m managing just fine. I still color my hair because I like the way it looks and makes me feel. When I put forth the effort to make up and do my hair I feel better. I do it for me. We all come to this age on a different roads so we have to pick what we feel comfortable doing.

  24. Susan Clark
    December 16, 2018 / 8:16 am

    I agree. Each of us has the right to age the way we choose. Sometimes there are conditions that are chosen for us and you do the best that you can. Helping support my husband after major back surgery and recovery in the last 18 months opened my eyes. Our lives completely changed and we learned hard life lessons together. I found new meaning in the word acceptance. For me keeping active – moving and stretching my body every day has been my focus now that I am 61.It is the best gift I have given myself. Another thing for me is surrounding myself with women who love me for me. Let’s celebrate each other and work through life together.

    • December 16, 2018 / 9:43 am

      I’m so sorry to hear about your husband Susan. Acceptance is powerful. Thank you for sharing with us.

  25. Patti Cullen
    December 16, 2018 / 7:37 am

    To each her own is my approach to this topic. Whatever makes you happy, comfortable and confident is what we should each do. I am hopeful that I have taken care of this vehicle (my body) well enough my entire life that it will serve me well as I enter my 50s and beyond. It is important that my outside still looks presentable, but it is more important my soul shines. Happy Sunday all!

  26. Ann
    December 16, 2018 / 6:53 am


    I like your story about the older woman who was getting her roots touched up because that’s what she likes. I was reminded of a time I got a much shorter, edgy haircut. I received many compliments. Yet every time I looked in the mirror, I thought “I don’t look like me!”

    I’ve made fashion “mistakes” in a similar way before as well. I’ll go shopping with a friend or rely in the sales clerk and fellow customers to opine on the outfits I’m trying on. They assure me that I look fabulous, etc. So I buy the items, get home, wear them, look in the mirror and think “I don’t look like me!”

    Sigh. Getting older. Gaining weight. Etc. Is not fun.

  27. Bonnie
    December 16, 2018 / 6:09 am

    Hi Jennifer, You look amazing in foils wow. Please let us know what eye liner and shadow you use.
    Thanks, I love you posts

  28. Janet Williams
    December 16, 2018 / 5:56 am

    I could not agree more! Be true to yourself by making your own choices and let others make theirs. Period.

    • December 16, 2018 / 7:38 am

      Yes, let’s support one another and build a strong community of women.

  29. Lee
    December 16, 2018 / 5:33 am

    I love this topic. I am at that age now, where I am enjoying my ideas of aging gracefully. It has more to do with being grateful for who I am as a person than it does about looks. Having said that though, I am also enjoying a “look” that I always put myself down for, in my younger years. For instance, I enjoy hats, (I don’t look like a clown afterall). I am enjoying “red” lipstick (thank you Jennifer), I enjoy some trends with regard to accessories, I enjoy my brighter blonde hair color, I am thankful, finally, for the scars on my face as they have given me a deeper love, character and compassion that I believe I would not have had, otherwise and those are gifts we cannot put a price tag on. All of this and a meaningful and purposeful life are what aging gracefully is for me.

    • December 16, 2018 / 7:36 am

      Dear Lee, thank you so much for sharing your wisdom with us. I love it xx

  30. Jeanne
    December 16, 2018 / 5:29 am

    Jennifer, thank you for a wonderful and supportive post. Aging really is a matter of personal choice. My grandmother was blessed with amazing genes. She aged gracefully by dyeing her hair and fudging about her age ( and keeping her fashion choices up to date even into her 90s). My sister ages gracefully by having cosmetic surgery and dyeing her hair. My beautiful aunt just allowed nature to take its course; but she watched her diet and stayed physically active. I dye my hair, and use facial muscle exercising methods. (I would opt for other procedures but they are beyond my budget).

    • December 16, 2018 / 7:34 am

      Thanks for sharing Jeanne. I’d love to know more about your facial excercises. I’ve been experimenting with some myself.

  31. Cindy
    December 16, 2018 / 5:28 am

    I think we should each age in the way that is comfortable to us, whether it’s hair coloring, facelifts, injections, etc. It’s not about fooling anyone, or trying to be someone we’re not. Rather, I see it as the fullest expression of who we are.

    • December 16, 2018 / 7:31 am

      That’s a wonderful way to describe it Cindy. It’s to please oneself.

  32. Linda
    December 16, 2018 / 5:16 am

    Great article! Real life models are inspiring & it’s about time the industry has acknowledged us finally.

    • Robyn
      August 22, 2019 / 3:43 pm

      50 is the new 30?

  33. annie vanderven
    December 16, 2018 / 5:12 am

    I used to tell my mother if God did not want us to have plastic surgery, he would not have invented plastic surgeons.. Needless to say I followed God.s advice!!!

    • December 16, 2018 / 7:30 am

      I love this Annie! Thanks for sharing. My mother had a full face lift at 57 and looked amazing.

  34. Cathy
    December 16, 2018 / 4:36 am

    On a side note, Your eyes look very pretty in the picture of you with the foil in you hair. Would you mind sharing your eye shadow and eye liner color and product? I hope I didn’t miss it in a previous post.

    • December 16, 2018 / 7:27 am

      Thanks Cathy. I’m wearing Urban Decay pencil in smoke and their Basics Naked 2 palette. I keep trying to make a video of me to share but not there yet. Stay tuned

  35. December 16, 2018 / 4:31 am

    One time my husband had dropped me off at the salon so I could get my roots touched up. Well, after 20 minutes he came back to ask me a question, and started laughing. He had never seen me with all the color on my hair! I did look a fright! I am 70 now and will never stop coloring my hair!

    • December 16, 2018 / 7:23 am

      My husband laughed at my foil photos too. It’s funny, but men go to salons to get their hair colored too

  36. December 16, 2018 / 3:53 am

    As you point out, it’s about personal preferences and how we approach aging. The women who are on the journey Au Natural, hopefully feel good about themselves. I go for facials, keeping my hair blonde with lighter highlights and lowlights and I try to eat very healthy…berries, veggie salads, lean poultry and fish and exercise is part of my life too. I’m trying to age in my very best way…a healthy way.

    • December 16, 2018 / 7:10 am

      Bravo Paulette! Being healthy is the most important of all

  37. Mumbai
    December 16, 2018 / 3:47 am

    A very good written article to the point. It’s all a personal decision . b.t.w….you look very young with the foil deco

    • December 16, 2018 / 7:08 am

      Thank you, foils are my “color” 😉

    • Valorie
      December 16, 2018 / 8:43 am

      I agree…thought that was a great picture of you!

    • Valorie
      December 16, 2018 / 8:48 am

      Hi Jennifer. Can you tell us the brand of brow pomade you use? I clicked on the link above but it took me to mascara instead of the pomade. Thank you and Merry Christmas!

  38. Sondra
    December 16, 2018 / 3:44 am

    Thank you and AMEN! Women are the first ones to critize another woman and are harder on them than men. I guess you would say about me….I’m aging gracefully. I’ve never colored my hair nor had any injections or procedures. And I certainly don’t care if anyone else has. I DO try to keep my weight down and dress nicely and I DO wear make-up and eye shadow! I’m so glad to hear that ‘someone’ is finally waking up to the fact that we older women DO like to look nice. We’re NOT the ‘type cast’ generation of long ago.

    • December 16, 2018 / 7:07 am

      We certainly can’t be type cast these days.

      • Julia
        May 10, 2019 / 1:56 pm

        We as individuals should embrace ourgrowl g old. It doesn’t have to be frumpy stores are full of flattering clothes make up consultants just keep It natural. We deserve it. We have earned are place as women mothers grandmothers. Enjoy looming hood

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Unauthorized use and/or duplication of any images or written material is strictly prohibited without express and written permission from this blog's author and owner. A Well Styled Life® a registered trademark.
| powered by chloédigital