ISO the ‘Perfect Dress’

Dress trends have come and gone over the years. The Roaring Twenties were epitomized by the rise of Coco Chanel and the flapper look — short hair and short, shapeless shift dresses. During the late 1930s and early ’40s, the glamour of Hollywood prevailed — until, of course, World War II broke out, making couture seem inconsequential. More structured dresses — inspired by military uniforms and fitting the mood of the times — then began to be worn with pride. …

5 Tired Trends Finally Bid ‘Buh-bye!’

I love being an “early adopter” of new style and beauty trends. For the novelty, sure, but mainly for the utility: It makes me feel useful when I get a chance to weed out the nonstarters for my posse of age-50+ girlfriends — and that includes you! But let’s be clear: I’m not all that cool, and I don’t fall in love with the newest vogue simply because some PR person urges it on me or because the media maven …

I Should Wear More Red. You, Too?

I almost always wear black. It dresses up inexpensive basics, and it makes otherwise-edgy leather leggings and over-the-knee boots come off as classics. But now, having watched Viola Davis (below), Jane Fonda, Allison Janney and Christine Baranski sporting high-voltage reds at the Golden Globes, I’m suddenly feeling kind of drab. Red really does send an instant message, especially at 50. “I’ve got confidence and attitude,” it says, “so pay attention!” Make resolutions with staying power! Sign up for our free …

And the Beauty Award Goes to…

Love to gawk at award shows? Me too. But watching the Golden Globes Sunday night, I longed for those mic-toting yentas on the red carpet to ask some beauty questions for a change. Whereas award-season fashions can seem light years away — honestly, how many of us rush out to buy Gucci gowns the next day? — makeup is something most women can relate to. So celebrity interviewers, please accept my suggested question list (you’re welcome!) for the Oscars five …

The Most Age-Friendly Places to Live

What are the best places to live if you’re age 65 or older? Of the 100 most populous American cities, these lead the list: Madison, Wis. Omaha-Council Bluffs, Neb.-Iowa Provo-Orem, Utah Boston-Cambridge-Newton, Mass.-N.H. Salt Lake City Of small towns, these are on top: Iowa City, Iowa Sioux Falls, S.D. Columbia, Mo. Bismarck, N.D. Rapid City, S.D. All of this is according to the Best Cities for Successful Aging report released Nov. 18 by the Milken Institute, a nonprofit, nonpartisan, California-based think tank. …

Best Way to Handle Menopause? Eye Makeup!

Wasn’t there a cool babe in this mirror just a week ago? My hormones are out of whack. I’m tired, stressed out and cranky about aging. But then I put on my eye makeup, and it kicks my bad mood to the curb. In five minutes I feel and look 10 times hipper and sexier — like a blond version, I like to think, of Charlotte Rampling (right), who at 68 is the new face of NARS cosmetics. >> Too Old …