Basic Pieces Every Woman Over 40 Needs

Basic Pieces Every Woman Over 40 Needs

Regarding fashion over 40, there are some basic pieces every woman over 40 should own in their wardrobe. These pieces are classic, timeless, and appropriate.

By 40, you’ve spent years developing your style and you know what works and what doesn’t. I love my 40-year-old wardrobe compared to my 20-year-old wardrobe which consisted of pieces from Forever 21. No thank you, I would die if I had to wear all those outfits again.

Now is the time you can be super picky about your wardrobe and choose which items to invest in versus always following the trends. You’ve earned it so find clothes you love and wear items that make you feel comfortable and confident.

These basics are a great starting block to make sure you have in your closet.

Investment Handbag

A woman in her 40s is at the point where she deserves an investment handbag. It’s like this is the time when she deserves that Chanel bag she’s been eyeing all those years. She’s earned that bag.

An investment handbag is one of those items you will never regret having or buying. Stick to one with neutral colors vs. a brighter shade. This way it will go with all your outfits and you can carry it for years. Go with black, grey, tan, or even white.

This will be one of those items you cherish for years to come and it will instantly elevate any outfit you carry the bag with. My favorite brands are Celine and YSL, the quality is unmatched and I feel so chic carrying one of these bags.

If you aren’t comfortable buying a designer handbag you can still invest in a great leather handbag. There are amazing options from several French brands like Sèzane, A.P.C., DeMellier, and Cuyana.

More affordable options with great-looking bags would be MANGO and J.Crew as well.

If you’re curious about how I choose which handbags to invest in, find it here.


Power Blazer

A woman in a blazer means power, sophistication, and polish. Invest in a great neutral blazer like black, grey, or navy that you can wear for work and on the weekends.

Invest in a chic and classic blazer you can wear for years to come from places like Everlane, Veronica Beard, or Sèzane. Wear it with jeans (my personal favorite), pants, or even over a dress.

For more affordable options yet still classic and timeless try Banana Republic, J.Crew, MANGO, or even H&M.


Trench Coat

A trench coat is a great basic piece for women over 40 because it represents a classic style that goes with anything you can wear all year long. There are multiple ways to wear a trench coat and multiple lengths. Most of the time it’s worn open but you can also tie it in the back so belt straps aren’t hanging down.

French women are big fans of the trench coat and there’s nothing more French chic than a timeless trench coat that is not only elegant but classic. This is a staple in a French woman’s closet and for good reason.

My favorite trench is the Scott Trench by Sézane which I sized up to wear sweaters underneath.


Denim For Women Over 40

Every woman needs a few pairs of great-fitting denim. Take the time to find a brand that works for you and invest in them. This is the one basic piece you should be investing in after 40.

Know your body type and what jeans look best for your body type because everyone is different. If you aren’t sure of your body type you can google and lots of different sites will come up to help you understand.

For example, I am a pear shape so bootcut, flare, and dark jeans work best for my body type. Not that I don’t wear other kinds of jeans, but I tend to stick to this style and color the most.

Some of my favorite denim brands are MOTHER, FRAME, Agolde, and PAIGE. More affordable denim options are from Everlane, J.Crew, and Madewell.


Crisp White Button Down

There is nothing more classic than a crisp white button-down worn with your favorite denim or pants. Stick to one that’s well made, not see-through, and looks polished.

My favorite places to buy a white button-down are Sézane, Everlane, and AYR. You can also go for an oversized white button-down as well.


Comfortable Shoes

Gone are the high stilettos and platform shoes. Your 40s are the time to invest in comfortable shoes for work and the weekend.

There are so many options for great shoes these days. I prefer to go with a block or small kitten heel when I want to get dressed up. But, even a chic pair of flats can look just as sophisticated.

Some of my favorite shoe brands which I know are going to be comfortable yet chic are Sèzane, VINCE, Madewell, Stuart Weitzman, and Rag & Bone. Sam Edelman is also a great affordable and comfortable shoe option.

And now sneakers are so in style that all you need is a great-looking pair of sneakers that you can wear with your dresses, skirts, and jeans. I love my VEJA, Jack Trainers, and Axel Arigatos.



Buying great cashmere is another basic every woman over 40 should be doing. Cashmere is the ultimate luxury item especially when it comes to sweaters. Make sure wherever you purchase Cashmere from practices good standards when sourcing their Cashmere. Some of my recommendations would be VINCE, Jenni Kayne, MERSEA, and Everlane.

Once you wear a Cashmere piece you will instantly be able to tell the difference from when you put on a regular cotton piece. Cashmere just feels amazing and it does feel luxurious.



When I refer to loungewear, I am talking about having a nice pair of pajamas and a robe to lounge around and sleep in. Invest in a beautiful pair of silk or satin pajamas and you will be amazed at how it makes you feel when going to sleep.

Some of my favorite places to buy pajamas are from MERSEA, Eberjey, or even Nordstrom, and GAP has great pajama options. You don’t have to spend a ton of money on a nice pair but invest in some you will love to wear.


Pieces To Avoid Over 40

With all of these basics over 40 women should be owning, what should women over 40 not be owning or wearing? These are all my personal opinions but if you don’t feel comfortable then don’t wear the item.

  • Tie Die
  • Anything Too Short
  • Crop Tops
  • Sweats
  • Tight Fitting Clothes
  • Pieces Your Teenage Daughter Would Wear
  • Too Many Logos

This post contains affiliate links, should you make a purchase, I will make a small commission. MERCI

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