Hillary Fry is a licensed manicurist at Scenario Hair Design in Shorewood, Wis. She also blogs at A Girl’s Gotta Spa!™.
My mother, Sue, is completely selfless and the most optimistic person I’ve ever met. She’s an example of living strong while being kind. Now in retirement, she’s still incredibly energetic. Walking has always been her sport. She used to walk 15-25 miles many days, but now she keeps it closer to 5.
I’m a beauty professional, so I was thrilled to be able to do my mom’s makeover myself. The biggest challenge with my mom’s makeover is lifestyle. When she was younger, she was a fashion queen. She no longer needs to wear heavy makeup and fancy clothing on a daily basis, but it’s still important to her that she be well-groomed.
Style Solution: Go With Some Stretch
Mom’s biggest hurdle is that she’ll wear anything comfortable—even if it is ill-fitting. I’m not against yoga pants, but my mom is tiny, and it’s best to keep things manageable and not oversized. For her new look, we chose a white jean jacket that contains a touch (just 2%) of Spandex, giving it room and keeping it wrinkle free while still looking constructed. The top also contains 3% Spandex, and the metallic shirring is decorative and flattering. It’s also in an icy mint green, which is perfect for spring and flatters her skin tones.
Hair “Do”: Keep the Length, Change the Color
When she was younger, my mother lost every speck of her body hair, down to eyelashes and brows. When it started growing back, she was so afraid she’d lose it again she has never cut her hair since. It was once down to past her ankles, but today is about waist length.
Since she prefers her hair long, the best thing my mom can do to keep it looking youthful is to color it, as the gray ages so quickly. Her natural color is blue-black, but that’s a little strong for her now, so I opted for a softer black. (Professional color is the best choice, but if you can’t afford it on a 3- 8 week basis, find a stylist that will give you an amazing cut and help guide with a home color you can use.) To keep it looking shiny and healthy, I used a mix of Moroccan Oil serum and frizz fighter, then gave it a quick pass with a flat iron—that’s all you need for glossy locks! When she’s looking for a different day look, a quick top knot or banded ponytail keeps it neat. At night, it can be twisted up with jewels!
Quick tip for long hair: No matter how much you condition, long hair tangles. Instead of starting from the top down to fight it out, use your brush or comb and move up over the tangle. It will come out much faster and be less painful.
Makeup Magic: Choose Double-Duty Products
For makeup, we kept it clean and fresh. Freeze 24/7 anti-wrinkle cream was applied to provide a temporary lift. Freeze 24/7 Eyecing was also used to tighten up the eye area. They work great! A “CC cream”—a tinted moisturizer with some added anti-aging ingredients—was applied for moisture with a slight tint and SPF. For a lovely neutral lip, we used L’Oreal Creme de Marron.
If we were going out on the town, we would use a heavier coverage foundation, eye liner, and a more coral or red lip color.
Remember, if you are all dolled up and your nails aren’t done, you aren’t done either! For my mom’s nails, I used products from Julep, which offers various treatments for nails, so you can apply a dehydrator is nails are oily, or a moisture replenish if nails are dry. Cuticle oil is imperative to keep skin and nails from drying and cracking. She chose a beautiful icy mint shade from China Glaze.
Mom was thrilled with the makeover. Refreshing her hair color and the light-colored outfit put a new spring in her step—and she was in love with the nail color. Her grandson was really wowed by the look when he came home. A makeover is renewing at any age!