Johnny Rodriguez

First impressions matter — it’s a fact. And, for women, hair is one thing we fuss with the most to ensure our first impression is a good one. Unfortunately, as we age, that battle becomes ever more fervent. With just a few simple tricks and tips from hairstylist Johnny Rodriguez and his color-expert wife, Kate Rodriguez — the dynamic duo behind Dallas’ revered Johnny Rodriguez the Salon — age-defying beauty is just a blow-dry away. Luckily, it’s just in time for the holidays.

It’s important to talk to your stylist about the look you’re going for, but keep in mind that some hairstyles flatter certain faces more than others. Finding the right cut can create an instantly more youthful you. Follow this simple guide:

Square chin or jaw: “Avoid chin-length bobs,” says Johnny. “It should go above the jawline or at least an inch below to avoid drawing too much attention to the chin. Soft layers can be worn toward or away from the face to help soften the jawline.”

Round faces: “Avoid full-fringe bangs and chin-length bobs — these will only highlight the roundness of the face. Length and soft-sweeping fringes will help elongate the face.”

Long or narrow faces: “Avoid a style that has only one length. Fringes and layers add height and volume without making the face look longer.”

Also, if you think that you have to cut your hair short because you’re older, think again (hello, Demi Moore ). “As women get older, there is a misconception that they have to go with a shorter length to stay looking young,” Johnny says. “There are many lengths and dimensions a woman can do for a youthful look … keeping the appropriate style for their head shape, face shape and, most importantly, their lifestyle, will make all the difference.”

As Johnny says, “Don’t let your hair tell your age.” So, if you’re still sporting feather bangs from the 1980s, it’s time to update your look.

According to Kate, natural hair has depth to its color, meaning it’s not one-dimensional — it’s full of lowlights and highlights. When coloring your hair, you should add that dimension in rather than going with an all-over color. For more mature hair, Kate recommends L’ORÉAL PROFESSIONNEL INOA SUPRÊME hair color, which is an ammonia-free, permanent hair-color process. “The results are brighter, with a natural-looking color to complement skin tone,” she says. “It adds body and volume to the hair with multidimensional coverage of 70 to 100 percent of gray hair. Plus, its patented Oil Delivery System technology maximizes the effectiveness of the hair-coloring process, while most color lines strip the hair of its nutrients during the processing time.”

As you age, your skin tone changes. This is important because adapting your hair color to your skin tone can work wonders to create a more vibrant look. Here are a few of Kate’s color rules:

Olive skin tones: medium to light brown shades with warmth
Avoid: ashy or flat colors

Fair skin: blond or soft copper tones
Avoid: dark tones — they tend to be harsh on fair skin 

Skin with pink undertones: cooler/lighter shades of blond
Avoid: warm, red and golden colors, which will clash with the pink tones in the skin

Skin with yellow undertones: warm, golden colors
Avoid: ashy or flat colors

Dark skin tones: medium to light brown
Avoid: lighter colors like blond, which will look unnatural and aged