It used to be an unspoken rule: once you hit 40, you had to chop off all your hair and sport what was so lovingly referred to as The Mom Haircut. Nowadays the line is blurred, according to a recent article in W, with nearing-40 stars like Gwyneth Paltrow and Jennifer Aniston, and over-40 hot mamas like Demi Moore, rocking locks that fall below their bustlines. Old school tastemakers say this is inappropriate, and that older women look hippie-ish and unkempt with Rapunzel-length hair. But newer generations see no problems with letting strands grow long and loose, citing versatility as a key factor (hey, we all have a ponytail day every once in a while).
Of course, we have to keep in mind that the celebrities mentioned above all have stellar styling teams to keep their long manes in check. As we get older, our hair naturally becomes more coarse and hard to manage, so routine trims, lots and lots of top-dollar conditioning products, and a good blowout are all key to sporting long strands. With that in mind, what side of the line do you fall on? Should older women embrace short, easy hair that accents a refined bone structure and opens up the face? Or is ultra-long hair an expression of femininity that works at any age?
If you fall into the latter camp, how long is too long? Some stylists, like L.A.'s Chris McMillan, think the cutting-off point is just above the breasts – anything else tends to look messy and unhealthy. Others take a less formulaic approach, with conservativeness of wardrobe or nature of lifestyle coming into play.
Whether you rock Katie Holmes' kid-friendly bob or Demi's locks-for-days, we know you've got an opinion on this. Take our poll below and sound off in the comments section.