Beauty Over 50: A reader request about my hair style…and does my husband get a voice?


High School graduation picture on over 50 Feeling 40

In the past week, one reader asked if I had shared the story of my recent hair style. She has no idea that there have been many lively discussions about my hair on this blog…and they may continue….especially when I ask if you think my husband gets a voice here.  When my hair was long and I was standing by it, some ladies would get very emotional trying to get me to be open to a cut.

I chose to start this discussion with my senior picture from high school, so you could appreciate that I have worn long hair the majority of my life. In the past I complained about how thick and out of control it was for humid Texas, but now I have learned to appreciate that it is thick and still grows quickly.

Reinvention and Blogging Lead to Change

Pamela Lutrell on Over 50 Feeling 40

Here is how I looked during the first 5-6 years of this blog.  If I remember correctly, I began to wear bangs in my 40s and have always enjoyed having them.  But, it became abundantly clear on this blog, that many women did not think my long hair was “stylish” and they would not hold back telling me so.  It wasn’t that I wanted to react to criticism and make a change, but I did want to be open to change and see if a shorter style might be youthful.  I had always feared that if I cut my hair, I would look larger and older.  I have found that with this cut, I actually feel younger and smaller.

The following series of images shows how it began at one point to just go shorter and shorter and shorter.

Pamela Lutrell's Mid-length hair


Pamela Lutrell reinvented hairstyle on over 50 Feeling 40

Now, there is a new issue


In the past two years, I began working with a new hair stylist and she convinced me to go with the current style and highlights…BTW, I love the highlights!  Since I began wearing my hair like it currently is, the blogging world has been so supportive and encouraging.  I would say overall my friends and readers love this.

There is just one problem…….

over 50 Feeling 40 with serum review

That would be the man I spend the majority of my time with.  My husband, Mr. B, was first attracted to me because of my long hair. He is not happy with how I am wearing it right now and really wants me to grow it back out.  I know some of you might take issue with that…however, he does get a big vote in the game. Keeping him happy is also important to me and my peace of mind.

I thought I had it all figured out, then he began to tell me in the last couple of weeks what he really thinks of it.  I do miss my hair, but this cut is way easier to maintain and less time consuming.  I do not see me growing it as long as it was when we married, but I may have to grow it out a bit and see if I can find a happy medium.  If the pandemic keeps us social distancing until summer, then it will grow any way.



Pamela Lutrell in new Chicos Jacket

Do you remember how the women who received makeovers on WHAT NOT TO WEAR? would get super emotional about their hair?  Some would cry…and some would immediately change it back after they left New York.  I am frustrated right now because I believe I am still in search of the style which meets all needs.  But I am not crying or losing much sleep over it…more important things right now to lose sleep over.   The requirements for my hair have now become:

I must feel confident in it.

My husband needs to like it.

It should be stylish and youthful for the mission of my blog.

Be fairly affordable to maintain.

I am looking for a Goldilocks hair style…it must be JUST RIGHT.  The saga continues….

Anyone else still looking for a perfect hair style on this side of 50?  Please share your story….

I have some great hair products in today’s slideshow. These are products I use and if you have hair that is difficult to tame, I highly recommend Kerastase products.  They have been worth every penny and tamed the wild beast on my head.  They also smell amazing.   I hope you will enjoy these options…stay hopeful…stay safe….


Remember, in our social distancing world, your smile is the way you send hugs!  Stay safe…and




By Pamela Lutrell


  1. Hair can be a real problem. You have looked great with each haircut. Good luck with your hairstyle search. I would love to have thicker hair with more body. However, this is what I was born with so I deal with it. Fortunately my husband doesn’t care what I do with my hair. It’s a good thing because it looks better short. Can you imagine how busy the salons will be when ladies are finally able to get appointments?

  2. Well I love your hair! I get no cute I realize that but easier to maintain is a huge help as we hit a certain age.
    I do think husbands get a vote but mine seems happy with my current longish short bob. Dude sweet bang that stay straighter with flat iron. Just a few seconds does it!

    1. You are the only one who knows what makes you happy. You look fabulous either way. Maybe somewhere in between will do it. I am absolutely envious and wish I had your hair. Mine is baby fine and slightly spiked and will have to be forever since rhere is nothing else I can do with it

  3. Hi Pam,

    I love your hair long. You have beautiful, shiny thick hair. I like the style you are wearing but I do love it long. I am in a similar situation. I have worn many styles over the years but went back to long hair in the anticipation of my son’s wedding almost 5 years ago. I wanted to wear a “half up, half down” style at the wedding so I knew I needed to grow it out. It is a painful process growing it out. I find that my style now, which is a couple of inches past my shoulders with wispy bangs, is much easier to take care of and less maintenance then when it was short. I do get highlights about every 3 months and a trim but other than that, it is so easy. The bonus is my husband loves my long hair. I can also wear it up if I like or curl it for a change. My hair is completely different as I am a natural blond and my hair is baby fine.
    Good luck and you are right, if the salons don’t open up soon, we will all be wearing longer hair. Stay safe!

  4. I would never think to ask my husbands opinion. Maybe it’s just me. We’ve been married 37 years. Some styles he’s liked… others, not so much.

    1. Hi Andrea, I totally agree with you. My hair, my head, my choice 🙂 Do people tell their husbands how to wear their hair?

  5. I am so glad you actually admitted that you want your husband to like your hair! Thank you. I am so tired of women saying ‘its my hair, he doesn’t have any say, blah blah blah”. Well, I personally do not want him cringing every time he looks at me. I feel that I have a say in how he dresses, whether he grows a goatee or not, etc. He wants to look good for me, why shouldn’t I care a great deal how he feels. Of course he likes it longer, but we have found a happy medium and even when I do go shorter, which I have, he always says it looks great and understands why I like it shorter. Just not his preference.

  6. Hi Pam,
    You look lovely in all of your pics, with all of your different hair lengths!

    My hair “journey” went in the opposite direction of yours. In my 40’s, I went very short; in my 50’s, not quite as short but still short. In my late 50’s, I started growing it out. Now in my 60’s, I have shoulder-length hair (a little shorter than yours in the picture above with the mannequins) with bangs and I absolutely love it. Everyone is different, of course, but for me, longer hair makes me feel more youthful and stylish. It takes more time to style than super short did, but not so much that I’m willing to cut it off again. I color it as well. I would be mostly gray/white, but I like keeping my blonde locks! I get a lot of compliments on my hair, and my husband loves it too. This is my Goldilocks hairstyle for the foreseeable future. By the way, I also love Kerastase products. My hair stylist recommended them a number of years ago and I’ve been using them every since.

  7. I like your hair in the picture of you in the red top and black jacket.Its flattened,but perfectly imperfect

  8. What a beautiful young woman you were! And older woman…
    Analysing your look, I think you could grow out your bangs and then a longer length will not overwhelm your pretty face!…You wear large glasses and with the longer darker hair and bangs there was not much face left to see, so I have been one of your readers who has welcomed the shorter lighter coif! But if you grow it- grow the bangs out too. I can see from your high school photo that you have a lovely hairline and beautiful thick hair- let it show! so few of us have that at a mature age.

  9. Perhaps,a little longer but with the streaks to keep it more modern.I had very dark hair,until my 50ies,but went blond with high lights and low lights. On the short side,because fla weather is also humid,etc and if long, the weight makes it draggy and I think makes me look older. We all need to find that happy medium,for just us, and not for someone else.also allowing for whatever that special someone thinks we should do. Not always simple, but if we have to live with it,so be it.Best for the week, keeping my fingers crossed the all clear comes soon.

  10. Pam
    I loved your hair longer. It really suited you. Your current style looks more like it is wearing you rather and looks over done Sorry but i am with your husband.

  11. In high school my hair looked exactly like your first hairstyle shown. By college it was down to my waist. My now hubby was walking behind me and noticed my long hair. My hair was the catalyst to our being married! Over the years I have worn shoulder length to short hair. At first my hubby would encourage me to keep my hair longer. However, over the past years he noticed how much time and effort my longer hair required. He eventually encouraged me to wear it anyway I liked. It’s funny I like his hair longer! Now I am wearing a highlighted, layered short bob with wispy bangs but, it’s thinning on top and I struggle to get a cut or style I like. Unfortunately, most of the stylists in my area cut beautiful long layered curly styles and not layered bobs. Over the past year I have seen at least 4 different stylists trying to find the one that will color, cut and style my hair to my satisfaction. Now with the virus I don’t know when the stylists will be able to return to work. My hair is a mess! It’s time to find a wig!

    1. I like the style with the black tunic and red leggings. I also like the shape of those glasses. I have long hair and wear a pony tail. My husband likes it and so do I because it is easy to care for and feels classic yet youthful and elegant. The color is an attractive natural shading of dark brown, gray, and white, I think a lot about changing my hair and have tried different styles but always end up with this one. People have complemented me on this style and this is worth a vote. I think all of the styles you show look good on you. I do so enjoy your column.

  12. In a post that’s all about hair, can I just say that I think the shape of your glasses in the picture with the mannequins is so flattering to your face. I think your hair looks good at every length 😊

    I enjoy your blog . Your smile is so warm and happy.

  13. I think we have to try out changes sometimes to see if it really suits us. I think it is so wonderful that you said your husband gets a big vote here, that is really important though I know feminists would not agree. Good for you Pam! When I saw your senior picture (I’m exactly your age!) I immediately remembered those little curly things we used to do on the sides of our faces! I know a woman I met at dog shows who was still doing it 30 years after high school and that was a little over the top, but I guess she still liked it! I cut my hair twice in my life, I mean REALLY cut it. I have always grown it back. The second time my youngest son cried and ran to his room devastated and it started growing back that very night!! Right now I wear it long in a shattered bob and I love it. I think trying different styles is fun. Since I spend time in a wig salon in my volunteer life, I have tried many styles and still find that short is just not working for me. Kind of unfortunately neither is gray. My sister looked wonderful in a gray wig, but me?? Yikes. Good for you for having fun with your hair, and even though I know all about “that texture” in humid weather, yours always looks well styled and on point!

  14. I vote for growing it longer but keeping the highlights. My husband likes my hair short, but I think it’s because that’s what I had when we met. It was shaved on the sides and back with a little braided tail. Pretty radical! I am always amazed when I see men clothes shopping with their partners. My husband has zero interest in fashion and I dress for me. Oh, and my hair is a low maintenance, shoulder length.

  15. Oh, Pam . . . you are so genuinely lovely, inside and out, I truly believe it is your inner beauty shining through your smile and eyes that we see in your photographs. No doubt your husband primarily sees that, too, but is simply longing on occassion for that girl he met and married long ago. They all long for that version sometimes I think, whether they express it well or not.
    That said, please do what pleases YOU. Your Mr. B will come around to whatever makes you happiest. Your loyal readers will always find something to disagree over, but will love you no matter the hair you sport. I personally favor your hair in the picture where it is somewhat of a red color, shoulder length (you’re standing in front of the door, tunic top and scarf over the red pants). That seems like a happy balance between short and long, and maintains your adorable bangs.

  16. Your beautiful smile hasn’t changed a bit since your senior picture!

    You have such great hair and are lucky that you can wear it longer or shorter. I think you should just keep trying out different styles. The nice thing about hair is that it does grow and never stays the same. I do like your highlights. They are so soft and pretty.

    I always ask my husband for his opinion about my hair or fashion. I value his point of view, and of course want to look my best for him.

  17. What a great question to pose about appearance. My spouse frequently pines for the days when my hair was long. But. He didn’t have to wash it, style it, curl it, wrestle with it, resort to a ponytail just to keep it off my face, add hours spent on it while getting ready to get to work. He never brushed it for me.

    He seems to believe in the idea that long hair is the only option for women. By contrast, even though I prefer clean-shaven, he wears a beard and mustache because it is time-consuming and uncomfortable to shave. So why does he hang on to the notion of women’s hair being some kind of crowning glory? That is the question I would respectfully like to discuss.

    Healthy hair is a gift to be appreciated regardless of its length or style. And you always look fabulous. I hope you find a happy balance.

    P. S. My best haircut was a cut so short it was one inch all over. I felt adorable, I think I looked adorable, and it was the easiest time of my life. There was so much negative noise about it that I grew it out, but I learned the secret of why men keep their own hair so short — morning prep time and daytime messing with my hair or worrying if it was still styled cut by hours! More time spent on productivity and more attention to way more important aspects of our wonderful lives.

  18. You are so right, Pam about hair contributing to one’s feelings of confidence. I am finding it a life long quest for the perfect hairstyle. Everyone’s hair is so unique and many of us have hair with a mind of its own. When I let it get me down, I have to stop and be happy that I have hair at all!
    The one thing I love about my hair is the color and other than a few gray hairs, which are easy to hide, has been the same light rich auburn since I was a child. I get compliments on it all the time. Remember “The Fall” hairpieces from the 60s? I still have mine and could wear it!
    As I’ve gotten older, my hair has become thinner. It has waves on one side, but not so much the other. I’m still searching for a style that’s easy to maintain and doesn’t look frumpy. I have a friend with a pixie cut that looks so chic and all she does is wash it. I’m tall with a few extra pounds and a small head. It wouldn’t work for me.
    You are so right about good hair products! This is one area that you really should spend the extra money on. Water and humidity also play a part.
    I recently found a new tool I’m having success with. It’s a hot brush that’s a brush on one side and flat on the other. If you can brush your hair, you can use this. It’s supposed to add volume, but with my hair, I haven’t found that it helps much. However, it’s been great for taming the pesky locks that just don’t want to lay in place. It works much better than a flat iron for me.

      1. This one is by Westinghouse. It’s actually called a “heated brush.” I found it in the clearance section of Macy’s in February. I found a video on how to use another more expensive brand on Pinterest. I bought mine for less than $20. I’m thinking Ross or TJ Max may have some, but haven’t checked.

  19. I think most men prefer long hair. I had long hair in high school as did most of us ladies of a certain age. I spent many hours studying while drying my hair under a hair dryer while it was rolled on giant rollers to make it straighter. I never ironed it as some did. I got it cut to about chin length before getting married almost 44 years ago. I also added bangs at that time. I knew once married that I wouldn’t have time to deal with the long hair. My husband was okay with it. I grew it out after getting a really bad haircut when my stylist retired to start a family. The new stylist was more intent on selling me services & products than cutting my hair. When I eventually cut it again, I have worn the same basic style with bangs at various lengths. I also have what stylists call “virgin hair”. It has never been colored, permed or chemically treated in any way. It is bright white, & my husband actually likes it. Your hair looks great in all the styles you’ve shown. For my two cents, I think it looks better at bit longer. I hope you & Mr. B can find that middle ground.

    1. Just had to add that my mother use to roll my on orange juice cans with bobby pins!! Uh oh…I’m feeling old!

  20. My husband gets just as much say in my hair as I get in his. That’s to say, not a whole lot :). He doesn’t like gray hair, so I’ve got my naturally brunette hair done in ash blonde, all I could manage without looking like a skunk as the gray was so high contrast and showed so quickly. I have longer hair than he originally liked, so I can put it up for working out and maintaining my health. As time has gone on, he has decided he likes it. I think it’s worth giving quite some time on a new hairstyle or color. Change takes time -sometimes several months – to get used to.

  21. When I went on my first date with my husband, I asked him, “What do you think of my hair?”

    “I like it long,” he (predictably) said, “but it’s your hair, and you can do whatever you want with it.”

    Yeah, I kept him! 🙂

    I’ve had super-short (sides shaved, almost a mohawk) to long (shoulder-blade length) and every colour from blond to pink to purple to orange to lavender, and he still says, “It’s your hair, do what you want.”

    Pam, maybe you need try some long wigs!

    1. Mr. B is pretty special and just because he likes my hair long and prefers it that way doesn’t make him less. But thanks for joining in the conversation, Shelia.

  22. Hi Pam, I understand perfectly that it is none of my business and you should Wear any cut that makes you happy. I personally really love your hair and glasses in the photo with mannequins. You look glowing and the length suits your face. The layers of the new cut seem to cut your face right in the middle. I am with team long :).

  23. I think I liked your hair best when it was just a bit longer than it is now, but the most important consideration is that it has to make you happy. My hair is thick like yours, but curlier. I’ve been wearing it quite long for the past few years, but decided to go shorter about six weeks ago. My timing was definitely all wrong! Now it’s almost ready for a trim and all the hairdressers are closed. I guess I’ll be growing it out again! Fortunately, like yours, it grows quickly.

  24. My favorite picture of you is the one in front of your door with the pretty wreath. I think that might be a happy medium length. I am envious of your fabulous thick and shiny hair!

  25. I had to smile when I read this post. I so understand your dilemma! I am currently transitioning to my natural salt and pepper hair color. Why? Because my husband has been asking me to do this for a couple of years. He really likes the color!! Like you, pleasing him is important to me. Knowing he likes the way I look gives me confidence. I think your idea of letting your hair grow out a bit is a perfect solution. Kudos to you for admitting your desire to please Mr B.

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