Want to Look Younger? Steer Clear of These Summer Clothing Items

Looking youthful and radiant during summer doesn’t require as much effort as you’d imagine. Though it’s great to pay attention to the list of summer staples you should be wearing — think sundresses, linen tops, and shift dresses — it’s actually far more important to make a note of all the things you shouldn’t be wearing. From granny slippers to visors and bulky sandals, these are the 10 clothing items that will instantly age your style this summer.

1. Narrow sunglasses


Happy senior couple in white on tropical beach

Narrow sunglasses look dated. | iStock.com/dmbaker

Much like your hair cut, your choice of sunglasses is a huge giveaway to your real age (or worse, they can further age you). To avoid adding five years to your appearance, make sure that your summer sunglasses are youthful and flattering. For starters, all narrow, rectangular sunnies need to go, because no matter your face shape, these will undoubtedly date your sense of style back to the ’80s. Instead, opt for a pair of classic wayfarers, cat-eye sunglasses, or aviators. These three styles have the ability to instantly slim your face shape and give you a fresher appearance.

2. Floor-length skirts

Carefree mature woman walking barefoot at beach

It’s too much fabric for the season. | iStock.com/m-imagephotography

As we age, there are many natural reasons we might start to feel insecure about our legs. Whether they’ve lost definition or now display a network of blue spider veins, we understand why it’s more comfortable to keep them covered during the summer months. That being said, there are some seriously stylish ways to hide your insecurities, and floor-length skirts are simply not included in that group.

This unfortunate fashion choice may get the job done in terms of coverage, but it has the unfortunate side-effect of dating your look by 10 years. If you absolutely must cover your legs, reach for linen or patterned toothpick trousers. 

3. Visors

Woman smiling outdoors

Unless you’re on the tennis court, skip the visor. | iStock.com/Zero Creatives

Visors have their place in women’s fashion, but that place is limited to games of tennis and golf — with zero exceptions. Of course we agree that you need to protect your face from sun damage during summer, but there are plenty of more stylish ways to do so. For example, you can never go wrong with a wide-brim hat at the beach, or a preppy baseball cap when you go for a walk. Trust us, it’s best to swap that visor out before leaving the house.

4. Tied-up shirts

Gorgeous young fashion model

Tying a waist around your shirt might be practical, but it’s just a little silly looking. | iStock.com/panic_attack

Ageing skin is thinner, increasingly sensitive, and therefore more likely to burn. As such, covering up your shoulders on hot summer days is much more meaningful than a mere fashion choice. That being said, it’s time to stop tying a button-up shirt or flannel into a knot around your waist. This style may have been popular for women back in the early 2000s, but today it’s seriously outdated. Instead, find yourself a lightweight cardigan or loosely drape your favorite sweater around your shoulders in true New England fashion. This way, you can look stylish while protecting your delicate shoulders and décolletage from the sun.

5. Bulky sandals

Row of sandals in a footwear shop

Sandals that cover more than half your foot look a little bit matronly.  | iStock.com/Vichai

As we age, finding footwear that is both comfortable and stylish becomes a serious challenge. Your feet will need more support during summer since you’ll be doing more outside. Thankfully, it’s possible to find footwear that doesn’t completely sacrifice fashion in the name of comfort. Ditch those bulky sandals and check out comfort brands like UGG and Rockport to see exactly what we’re talking about.

6. Bermuda shorts

Modeling shoes

Bermuda shorts will leave you with some freaky tan lines. | iStock.com/Tashka

When it comes to wearing shorts during the summer, it’s important to strike the appropriate balance between looking matronly and overly revealing. For mature women, you don’t want to bear it all in tiny Daisy Dukes. That being said, you also don’t need to cover half of your legs in bermuda shorts to feel conservative. Bermuda shorts are not only unnecessarily long, they also prevent your legs from getting an even tan. We recommend a pair that falls five to seven inches above the knee.

7. Waist belts

Beautiful mature woman sitting alone on the beach

Choose something a little more modern. | iStock.com/OcusFocus

Waist belts are, without a doubt, an accessory to be kept in the past. If you want to cinch your waist, find a shirt-dress with a dainty waist tie instead. Alternatively, skater dresses do an excellent job of accentuating your waistline by flaring out along the skirt. You can also invest in high-waist jeans (yes, they’re back in style) and wear them with a blouse tucked in.

In short, if your waist is one of your favorite physical attributes, there are plenty of ways to highlight it without regressing to an outdated waist belt!

8. Dresses with funky patterns

Attractive female dancing at the beach

Crazy patterns look a little, well, crazy. | iStock.com/m-imagephotography

If you did a good job of cleaning out your closet this spring, you shouldn’t have any funky, patterned dresses leftover to wear during summer. Because, let’s face it, this style of dress is the fashion equivalent of spikey blonde hair. Modern style is all about minimalism — not peacocking — so stick to clean lines and solid colors. If your personality doesn’t call for subtlety, consider stripes and polka dots instead.

9. Fisherman’s hat

Happy senior woman sitting on a bench

You can do better than this hat. | iStock.com/alexsokolov

We apologize in advance for any offense this may cause, but fisherman’s hats are not only terribly out of fashion, they’re also completely pointless. Hats should offer sun protection, yet a fisherman’s hat has such a narrow brim that only the top of your forehead will be shaded. So unless you plan on fly-fishing this summer and want to get into character, it’s always best to leave this style of hat behind.

10. Wide sneakers

Pair of grey shoes outdoors

Your sneakers should have a more modern edge. | iStock.com/5second

If there’s one footwear choice that will instantly age your outfit, it has to be a pair of granny sneakers. You know what we’re talking about — those soft and wide-set Keds older women can’t help but love. If you want your summer ensemble to look more youthful, ditch these sad shoes in favor of a stylish pair of Adidas or Converse.