Take these steps to simplify your style and update your look.

When it comes to fashion over 40, there seem to be two distinct camps:  those who are forever straining to return to the look of their youth (think wedge heels and bedazzled jeans), and those who’ve stopped trying and given in to the mom jeans and t-shirt look.

I get it; we all have much more to focus on than our clothing, and updating our look can seem like an exhausting and unwinnable competition.  But what if I told you just a few simple elements could update your style without breaking the bank?

Must Have Pants

Yes, you have a shape!  Take a good, hard look in the mirror and own it.  The goal is not to get to your ideal weight or beat yourself up for how you look.  Let’s agree to embrace the body we have today. 

Invest in yourself by taking an afternoon at a higher-end clothing store, where you can get an objective opinion of your shape and which type of pants flatter.

Become friends with a good tailor, should you need to get those new slacks or jeans fitted or hemmed.

You may even decide to buy a size bigger than normal (gasp) to allow space for room enough in some places, but taken in at other areas.

A Stylish Blazer

I’m not talking about an interview suit here.  A casual blazer can add class to even jeans, if it fits correctly.

The simple rule:  think of the bottom of the blazer as a pointer, highlighting your best feature.  Is your waist great, but your hips are out of proportion?  Wear your blazer a little shorter.  Tummy not your best asset, but legs are looking good?  Find a blazer with a longer cut.

Simple statement jewelry

Take a good, hard look at your accessories.  If your jewelry case is predominated by pieces that say “Mom”, it’s time for an update.  Today’s jewelry is both affordable and streamlined.  Save the rhinestones and pearls for your heirloom box and go with 2 or 3 sets of hoop or stud earrings and a necklace or bracelet versatile enough to wear with several looks.   No “matchy” sets, please. Check out the links I’ve included for some adorable ideas from James Avery.

Here’s the takeaway:  now is your time to rediscover (or perhaps discover) your style identity.  Focus on these updates and you’ll see rewards in your self-esteem and sense of purpose.

What’s your favorite style tip?