This article has been updated since its initial publish date. 

Finding the best hair colors for your skin tone can be exciting, as is a trip to the salon for a fresh turn-of-the-season style. With that said, we checked in with a professional hair stylist and expert for tips on what hair colors and dyes to avoid over 40 for a more youthful look this spring, and other helpful tips to keep in mind before heading to the salon this spring. Read on for insight and advice from Gina Rivera, celebrity hair stylist and Founder of Phenix Salon Suites.

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2 Common Hair Color Mistakes That Add Years To Your Look Over 40—And Tips To Avoid Them

Mistake #1: Dying Your Hair Too Dark

While oftentimes nothing looks fiercer than box-dyed black hair, Rivera suggests avoiding any shade that looks *too dark* for your skin tone, as this can lead to an older look sooner than you might think.

“There are so many enticing shades to work with nowadays when it comes to selecting a hair color at any age,” Rivera says, but “keep in mind that darker shades tend to sharpen features and can also generate shadows which can distract from the features that mature women may want to accentuate.” 

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Instead, Try Getting Highlights This Spring

Highlights, she says, are always a “great option to consider.” However, she notes that “it’s important to consult with a salon professional” to ensure that the correct shade is selected to match the skin tone and to avoid the look of being “washed out.”

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Mistake #2: DIY Coloring Over 40 

A radiant, youthful-esque look can be obtained through the help of your stylist, Rivera says, as there are many mistakes we make when attempting to color hair ourselves. If your goal is an anti-aging effect, this is especially important.

“My number one rule is to never take on something that a professional should be doing when it comes to your hair, especially processes that involve chemicals,” she explains. “There is a science and chemistry involved in services such as coloring, highlighting and perming, to name a few, and professionals are well-trained to understand the proper methods for application.”


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Instead, Hit The Salon To Avoid Damaging Your Tresses

Incorrect application, she says, can lead to “damaging the hair and can result in long-term irreversible damage in extreme cases,” that instantly can make you look older.

Likewise, professionals attend school and often apprentice to learn proper cutting techniques that ensure a great look, so Rivera concludes that “staying away from the urge to cut, dye or highlight your own hair” is imperative for any great anti-aging look. Good to know!