Not only does hair color change as we age, but skin color and eye color can as well. That means that colors we once loved may no longer look as good later in life. Fashion advisers have long recognized this and put forward their own ideas for what best suits the older set.
The most common recommendation I have seen is to avoid the color black. The Simplicity Sewing Book, published in 1947, has positive suggestions, but only for a limited segment of the graying population. As you can see in this chart, provided by the wonderful TJ of The Perfect Nose, the authors found only three types of older women to advise—those with black and white hair and hazel eyes; with grey hair and brown eyes; and with white hair and blue eyes. There are no recommendations for the graying redhead, or even the blue eyed woman with black and white hair. And there is no mention of different skin colors at all!
But let’s work with what we have. Although it is a little hard to determine the precise colors here, it looks like no one gets to wear black. (I am guessing that the third option for the hazel eyed beauty is a very dark green.) All are given a shade of dark blue, which perhaps makes navy the base color for the older set in 1947. Only the woman with hazel eyes gets to wear beige, while only the woman with brown eyes gets to wear brown. As a blue eyed older woman, I am particularly appalled by the choices given to my subset. I don’t wear any of those colors except for the dark blue. Where’s the orange?