If you wonder how to dress like chic French women over 50, this post is for you! Age has nothing to do with style and great style is possible no matter how old you are. You can be chic like a French woman at any age, the key is to know how to flaunt your body and sensibility in a way that works for you.
French chic style is not a difficult style to pull off. It’s something effortless, classic, nonchalant, cool but not arrogant. French style is about finding the right balance between looking dressed up and laid-back. It’s not being obsessed about wearing bold shades and extravagant items, bright colors, and expensive pieces. Keep reading if you’re looking for inspiration from the most stylish over-50 French women out there. These French women featured in this post give great inspiration on dressing age appropriately, always looking chic, and never missing of style.
I’ve rounded up the most helpful tips to create a French capsule wardrobe whether you’re 50 or not. Keep scrolling to see the timeless pieces that every chic French woman over 50 own, and then shop the pieces for yourself if you find their outfits as inspiring as I do.
How To Dress Like A French Woman Over 50
French-style for women over 50 is about getting a collection of pieces that look chic and that are comfortable and flattering. A French wardrobe is a functional wardrobe, that provides all the pieces you need to put them on and together in different ways. French women have always something to wear to every, and any, event or activity in their lives. In order to create this French capsule wardrobe, here are below 5 key French fashion tips for women over 50.
The 5 Style Rules French Women Swear By
- Start with the staples of the French wardrobe. Your style should be timeless, chic, and sophisticated. Some of the French staples you should have in your wardrobe are a white blazer, a cream blouse, a black cashmere sweater; pieces that won’t fade away.
- Always mix stuffy items with more casual pieces to rejuvenate your outfit. For example, you can wear your favorite fitted blazer with a pair of high waisted jeans. Opt for a simple white or grey T-shirt to wear underneath your blazer. It’s the perfect timeless and stylish look for any women over 50.
- Whatever you’re wearing, avoid wearing big statement necklaces, rings, and bracelets that can look unsophisticated and cheap. Instead, prefer to wear minimalists jewelry style, or just wear a watch.
- Always define your waist. I think it’s one of the most important French style tips. Oversized items are hard to pull off and it’s usually more flattering to define your waist. You can do so with a black leather/gold waist belt.
- Make sure you’re wearing the right bra size. Indeed, a droopy bust or sagging breasts can make you look older than you are. Make sure your bra is not too loose in the stripes or the band. Another French style tip is to wear shapewear underneath everything as it will give you smooth lines no matter your body size.
10 Fashion Essentials Of French Women Over 50
1. Leather Jacket
The leather jacket remains a timeless French wardrobe staple that never loses its cool-factor. It will definitely rejuvenate any of your outfits! You can pair it with high waisted jeans, a beige cashmere sweater, and a pair of loafers or slingback. Here are below the best leather jackets that’ll make any outfits stand out.
2. Tweed Jacket
The tweed jacket is a staple of over-50 French women’s wardrobe. It instantly elevates any kind of outfits (like a basic T-shirt with a pair of jeans). Is there anything chicer than a tweed jacket? The textured fabric is undisputedly a symbol of style thanks to Coco Chanel, who put the Scottish textile on the map in the 1920s.
3. Classic Fitted Blazer
A classic well-fitted blazer is one of the staples of over-50 French women’s wardrobe. This French iconic piece is so versatile: you can pair it with a basic T-shirt, a silk camisole, a pair of high straight jeans, and let the blazer be the statement of the outfit. It instantly gives chic and elegance to any outfit and it can be worn for a day or night outfit depending on the accessorization.
4. Button Down Shirt
A high-quality white button-down shirt is the perfect piece every woman should have in her closet. It’s an iconic French piece that every French woman owns. It might look polished and smart, so I’ll recommend pairing it with dark blue jeans and a pair of white sneakers. Remember the secret of French style is to mix stuffy pieces with more casual items to rejuvenate your outfit.
5. Cream Blouse
If the white button-down shirt can make your outfit look smart, a cream blouse softens and gives chic and elegance to any outfit. A cream blouse is so comfortable yet polished and can be worn with anything, anywhere. It can be worn for a day or night outfit depending on the accessorization. It will look very chic and elegant with dark blue jeans and a pair of low block heels or with cream high waisted wide-leg pants.
6. High Waisted Jeans
A high waisted pair of jeans is one of the key pieces of over-50 French women’s wardrobe. Jeans offer a very versatile use; they can be worn with every outfit and for every occasion. The high rise gives waist definition and the wider cut balances out the hips and elongates the legs. In terms of colors, dark denim is more polished whereas light denim is more casual.
7. Below Knee Length Skirt
After a certain age knee can be saggy, wrinkly, and can make you look older than you are. That is why I’ll recommend wearing a skirt at or below the knee as it looks more appropriate and it doesn’t look like you’re trying to look young.
8. Versatile Pair Of Shoes
Since Paris is a city where locals walk everywhere and move regularly using stairs, bikes, and public transportation, French girls are seeking stylish, cool but always comfortable shoes. So, invest in French shoe styles like ballerina flats, black loafers, or low block heels. Not only French shoes are comfortable but they are versatile as well, and they can be pair with any kind of outfits.
9. Classic Leather Handbag
If you don’t have one already, you need a good quality leather handbag in your closet. It’s one of the best ways to accessorize any outfit! To do so, opt for a black high-quality leather handbag. The black color is very versatile and will pair with any kind of outfit. The size of the handbag will depend on your budget.
10. Statement Watch
If you’re not sure about how to accessorize your outfit the French way, just wear your favorite watch. And it may be time to invest in a nice and timeless watch if you don’t have one already. If you’re looking for some inspiration, check out those luxurious and beautiful watches that can be paired with any kind of outfit.
French Beauty Tips For Women Over 50
- Always protect your skin whatever the season, and with SPF 50 in summer and SPF 30 in winter.
- Keep a healthy diet (see how to eat like a French woman wherever you are) to maintain healthy hair, skin, and weight. When it comes to beauty, never forget the food.
- Flaunt a fresh manicure. Having your nails manicured is part of all the little details that make you look good. Prefer red or nude colors and short nails.
- Make sure you exercise daily. Do whatever exercise appeals to you (yoga, dance, pilates, cycling) or just walk. But make sure to do it at least 30 minutes every day to keep your body in shape.
- Go regularly to your hairdresser. A good hair cut and color can make all the difference, avoid white hairs that can make you look older than you are.
- Be your true self. At 50, anyone knows you better than yourself. You know exactly what fits well and flatters you. Don’t try to be someone else and don’t try to follow the trends.
- Visit your esthetician regularly. French women go through regular facial treatments to maintain healthy and glowy skin.
- Have a proper skincare routine (see French skincare routine) and make sure to use a good anti-aging cream tailored to your needs (see the best French anti-aging creams).
- Don’t overdo the Botox, as it can make you look older than you are. Only have it done once a year or every two years.
Best Books About French Women Style
- Ageless Beauty the French Way, by Clemence Von Mueffling
- Why French Women Feel Young at 50, by Mylene Desclaux
- French Women Don’t Get Facelifts: Aging with Attitude, by Mireille Guiliano
- Older, but Better, but Older, by Caroline De Maigret and Sophie Mas
Disclosure Policy: some of the links in this post are affiliate links, meaning, at no additional cost to you, I will earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase. Please read my disclosure here for more info.
Bonjour and welcome to Leonce Chenal! The French online magazine written by a French woman that aims to help you live your French life, wherever you are. I’m Leonce, I'm French and I'm a Parisian expat currently living in the city center of Amsterdam. I created Leonce Chenal back in 2018 when I was living in London and missing my home country way too much. What started as an online space to share my favorite skincare products has since evolved into a destination for French fashion, interiors, and beauty. If you have any question or if you just want to say bonjour, you can contact me at email@example.com <3