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10 Tips To Feel Confident Wearing Shorts Over 40

Trying to figure out how to feel confident wearing shorts over 40? Here are 10 tips to being comfortable wearing shorts plus our guide on how to pick the right shorts for you!

A pair of shorts are perfect for summer. Throughout that time of year they offer unbeatable comfort and much-needed relief from the heat.

However, they are often associated with younger people. So does this mean this trend is out of reach for you if you are wearing shorts over 40? Absolutely not!

Wearing Shorts Over 40

With the right styling and a bit of confidence, anyone can look fabulous in a pair of shorts at any age! So, if you have been trying to figure out how to wear shorts in your 40s, you have come to the right place.

In this guide, you’ll find tips, tricks, and style suggestions that will help you step out in style this summer. Here is the art of looking uber-chic while wearing shorts in your 40s.

Tips For Wearing Shorts In Your 40s

Before buying a wardrobe full of shorts, you first need to understand a few things that will help you take things to the next level. Here are some of our favorite tips for wearing shorts over 40: 

1. Confidence is key.

In the world of fashion, nothing rings truer than ‘age is just a number.’ As long as you radiate confidence, you can pull off almost any look at any age.

This is why being confident is the most important step to rocking shorts in your 40s. You can put your best version of yourself out there without the big issue of feeling uncomfortable.

Be confident in your body and embrace your uniqueness. Do this and you will look great in anything, not just shorts!

2. Go for the right length.

In your 40s, you want to ensure that all the clothes you wear are comfortable for you. A huge part of this is finding the perfect length. Get a length of shorts that flatters your body and feel comfortable. 

For a modest look, go for Bermuda shorts that reach just above the knee. For a more casual vibe, mid-thigh length shorts are a great choice.

Just don’t go for anything that is too short because it will look less age-appropriate and elegant. Chino shorts are similar to the bermuda length and so a good option for this. and long shorts can be fine too, just don’t go too long.

3. Choose quality fabrics.

Quality fabrics are a big deal when choosing shorts over 40. And, this applies whether you are looking for clothes for formal occasions or casual wear.

Only buy shorts that are made using fabrics that are breathable, comfortable, and durable. A pair of denim shorts or longer shorts are not going to be the best option for breathability.

This means natural fibers like cotton and linen are excellent choices. As a bonus, such materials drape very well, so you are assured of a flattering silhouette. 

4. Play with patterns and colors.

There is a wide array of different colors and patterns to choose from when it comes to shorts. This allows you to add a bit of your personality to your outfits.

Do not be afraid to experiment a little: play with bold prints like florals, stripes, and polka dots.

As you do, though, remember to balance your bold shorts with solid-colored tops for a harmonious overall look.

Alternatively, you can simply go for neutral colors like beige, navy, or olive and pair them with versatile tops and accessories. Perhaps you are adventurous and will even try wearing white jeans shorts.

5. Mix and match your shorts with your tops.

When you find the right top and short combo, it creates a nice, balanced look. The best part about this is you can play around with it yourself to find a style that worlds for you. Just leave the long sleeves in the closet and opt for your summer tops.

For example, loose-fitting T-shirts, a striped tee, and tank tops with shorts are perfect for a relaxed, casual look. On the other hand, flowy dresses or button-down shirts add a touch of sophistication to your look. 

Wearing Shorts Over 40

6. Play with layers when wearing shorts over 40.

Sometimes, the weather can be unpredictable. This is especially true during transitional seasons. If you want to be prepared for any temperature changes, layer your perfect pair of shorts with a lightweight cardigan at the top.

For a chic look, you can use a denim jacket to add that casual flair. Alternatively, if you want to go for an elegant, breezy option, try to pair your shorts with a linen cardigan. 

7. Footwear is a big deal.

The right choice of footwear ties the whole outfit together. When choosing footwear in your 40s, consider both comfort and style. Remember long pants cover your shoes at time so when wearing shorts over 40 you have to be a little more conscious of this.

Sandals (including wedge sandals) are perfect for a relaxed summer look. Sneakers give you a cool, sporty vibe and are perfect for casual outings. For a dressier look, try loafers or low-heeled sandals. 

8. Make a statement with your accessories

When it comes to creating a polished, well-put-together look, accessories are a powerful tool in your arsenal. Consider adding a statement necklace, a colorful scarf, or a stylish belt when wearing your cutest shorts to complete your look.

Alternatively, you can simply use a classic watch or a stack of bangles to add a touch of sophistication to your overall look. Experiment with different accessories to find what works best for you.

9. Get the right fit

Wearing well-fitted clothes is crucial for a flattering look no matter how old you are. Avoid any shorts that are too tight or ill-fitting. Instead, go for a regular size fit that skims your body without being too tight or too loose.

In this regard, tailored shorts are a great option. They’ll give you an effortlessly polished and chic look. If you are someone with rather muscular legs, you may need the leg opening customized.

10. Get inspired by fashion icons

If you are looking for some style inspiration for wearing shorts in your 40s, look no further than older women who are fashion icons that have shown how easy it is to rock shorts at any age.

Women like Michelle Obama, Jennifer Aniston, and Halle Berry consistently show off their personal style while embracing shorts. Pay attention to their outfit choices, accessories, and how they pair shorts with different pieces to create stylish looks. 

How to Pick The Best Shorts for You

The key to rocking shorts in your 40s is to find a pair that is perfectly suited for your body type, height, and legs. Leave the haunting memories of poor short choices last summer behind and consider these tips to help you find the perfect shorts: 

Wearing shorts as someone over 40

Body shape

As you probably already know, there are 5 main body shapes: apple, pear, rectangle, inverted triangle, and hourglass. Each body shape has its own strengths and challenges when it comes to wearing shorts: 

  • Apple: This means you have a rounder midsection and slimmer legs. You want to draw attention away from your tummy while also highlighting your legs. To do this, go for shorts that have a higher rise and a looser fit around the waist. You can also opt for options that have some details or patterns on the hem or pockets to add some interest to your lower half. Avoid shorts that are too tight or too low-rise.
  • Pear: A pear shape means you have a smaller bust and wider hips and thighs. Ideally, you want to balance out your proportions. You can do this by choosing shorts that have a darker color and a simpler cut. Shorts with some stretch or flare are also great for you because they’ll easily accommodate your curves. Avoid anything that is too light or too busy. 
  • Rectangle: A rectangle shape means having a straight figure with little waist definition. You want to create some curves and add some shape to your body. You can do this by going for shorts that are low-rise with a tighter fit around the waist and hips. Avoid shorts that are high-rise or too loose.
  • Inverted triangle: If you have an inverted triangle shape, you have a larger bust and shoulders and narrower hips and legs. Here you want to soften your upper body while accentuating your lower body at the same time. Shorts that have a light color or ones with a more elaborate cut are perfect for this. Avoid anything that is too dark or too plain as this will make you look more top-heavy.
  • Hourglass: An hourglass figure means having a well-defined waist and balanced bust and hips. If you fall in this category, you want to highlight your curves and show off your waist. Do this by choosing shorts in your 40s that have a medium rise and a snug fit around the waist. Avoid options that are so high rise or so loose that they hide your waist.


Your height can also affect how a pair of shorts looks on you. Here are some tips for different heights when wearing shorts over 40:

  • Petite: If you are petite (under 5’4″), you want to create the illusion of longer legs. You also don’t want to look like you are overwhelmed by fabric. So go for shorts that are above mid-thigh and ones that have a simpler cut. This means no cuffs or pleats! You can also experiment with shorts that have a vertical stripe or a solid color to elongate your legs. Avoid anything that is too long or too busy. 
  • Average: You fall in this category if you are between 5’4″ and 5’7″. Here you have more flexibility. You can play around with different lengths (from mid-thigh to knee) and cuts to see what works for you. Also, try shorts that have a variety of different colors and patterns as these will work great with your height. Avoid anything that is too short or too long. 
  • Tall: If you are over 5’7″, you want to balance out your height. You can do this by choosing shorts that have a longer length and a more complex cut. Experiment with shorts that have horizontal stripes or lots of print to create the illusion of more width on your legs. Avoid shorts that are too short (above mid-thigh) as they can make you look taller.
Wear shorts in your 40s


When it comes to wearing shorts over 40 there are certainly some differences age has brought to showing our legs. Here are some tips for different leg types:

  • Slim: If you have slim legs, you want to add some shape and definition to them. Therefore, go for shorts that come with a tighter fit. You can also go for ones that are made using textured fabrics like denim or twill. Details and patterns are also your friends. Avoid anything that is loose or smooth like silk or satin as they can make your legs look even thinner.
  • Muscular: If you have muscular legs, you want to show off how toned you are. So go for shorts that have a loose fit. You can also play around with more lightweight fabrics like linen and rayon. Anything with some stretch or flare at the hem will also work great. Avoid shorts that are too tight or too heavy.
  • Curvy: If you have curvy legs, you also want to show them off. You can do this by going for options that come with a snug fit and structured fabric. Shorts with details or patterns also work well. Avoid anything that is too loose or too flimsy like lace or chiffon. 

How to care for your shorts:

Finally, let’s talk about how to care for your shorts since you have decided to be wearing shorts over 40. Here are some tips and examples on how to do that:


Washing your shorts regularly will keep them clean and fresh. Always follow the care instructions on the label of your shorts. Different fabrics need to be washed differently. Separate all your clothes by color and fabric type and use the right detergent and water temperature to wash them. 

Cotton shorts and other similar fabrics should be washed in cold water with a mild detergent on a gentle cycle. For denim, use cold water and a normal cycle. Finally, linen shorts should be washed in warm water on a delicate cycle.


Dry your shorts properly to prevent them from shrinking or wrinkling. Again, follow the care instructions on the label. As you do, avoid overloading your dryer or leaving your shorts in there for too long. Don’t use high heat or tumble dry unless otherwise stated on the label. 


It is important to iron your shorts every once in a while to keep them smooth and crisp. Use the right ironing temperature and steam setting for your fabric as stated in the care instructions. And don’t iron over buttons, zippers, or embroidery to avoid damaging them.


Finally, you will need to store your shorts properly to preserve their quality and longevity. Fold or hang them neatly in your closet or drawer. Avoid cramming your shorts with other clothes as this can make them wrinkle and lose their shape.

confidence in your 40s to wear shorts

Final Thoughts on How To Feel Confident Wearing Shorts Over 40

As you can see, age should never be a barrier to fashion experimentation and self-expression. Whether you prefer a loose-fitting style or want some tight shorts, you still have plenty of room to follow your own style.

By following the tips and tricks outlined above, embracing wearing shorts over 40 should come easy to you. So go ahead, step out of your comfort zone, and embrace the versatility and comfort of shorts this summer! Good luck!