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How a 'young looking' girl can look older?


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All my life people have said I look younger than my age but it's been especially said lately. I think it's affecting my ability to get hired since people think I'm really young. The only jobs I'm successful at getting are jobs normally for students, or internships. If there are even ANY older adult applicants I seem to lose out (even at a retail store in the past). I know this could be because of the job market, but I already have one degree and a lot of customer service experience. I don't tell my age in the interviews, but I'm 26 and people guess my age at around 20-22. One person at a past job of mine even thought I was in high school when I was 25! I have guys 3-4 years younger than me hitting on me sometimes, thinking that I'm their age or even younger than them. I've asked people why I look so young and they say "you have a baby face" or "you're so little." I'm 5'4 1/2" and about a size 7, which really isn't little, although I do have skinny legs. I have to buy a size 7 or so because of my rib cage and waist.


- I wear my hair up a lot, which could have something to do with it, although people have said I looked young with my hair down too.


- I've had both blonde hair (dyed) and brown hair. People thought I looked young with both colours.


- I have glasses. My Mom thinks I look even younger with no glasses.


- I don't wear really young looking clothes, especially not to job interviews. I usually dress really conservatively for job interviews, but for daily clothes I wear pretty much what other people my age wear.


- I don't have a curvaceous body. I'm pretty much square with skinny legs, as mentioned, and quite a flat chest. I don't think people would stare at my body so much to make a judgment on age from that though, especially not other women.


- I don't wear a WHOLE lot of makeup but I wear cover-up, eyeliner, and lip gloss.


- I noticed my eyes are really huge compared to my sister's, and that might contribute to an "innocent" look. People think my sister and I are about the same age, but she really is six years younger than me. She is obese though so that might have something to do with her looking older than her age.


Anyway.. any suggestions? I don't really want to post a pic but I will if I have to.

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Nothing says "I'm old" better than an 80s hairdo and mum's jeans. I'm joking.


Being petite / having a skinny figure does not help at all in your situation. I remember seing photographs of my mother-in-law who was incredibly petite even after she gave birth, and not even the characteristic clothing of the late 80s, early 90s made her look older. I hope someone with professional skills replies to this thread, because that's what I think you need.


From a man's prespective I'd suggest: hairdressing with lots of volume, middle of the road hair color (not full blonde, not full black, maybe some lighter strands in a light brown color), glasses, avoiding skin foundation, only a dark or strong red lipstick, using formal clothes (of the likes of business suits, pants might be better than skirts) and high heels.


Hope that makes any sense and that you haven't tried all of it already.

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I get the same kind of comments all the time. People still think I'm in highschool and I get treated differently by co workers who don't know my age. Same thing with job interviews and even applying for jobs. When you go into an interview, I think you should say how old you are just to make sure there is no confusion. I know it's annoying, but sometimes people are going to look at you less seriously when they think you are younger.



The one positive thing about this is that you'll keep your good looks longer than most people. When you're 40, you'll look 30!!!

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I understand what you mean. When I was younger people would tell me that I look and sound younger than I am because my face is round shaped and because of my voice. Because I smile alot I was carefree. Try not to get too bogged down in these things. Accentuate the positive. I've found that f you carry yourself in a commanding manner then these questions come up less. Even if you feel insecure don't let it come accross in your expressions or body language. No fidgeting, looking anxious or out of control. Practice in the mirror or in front of a friend. You can't help your height and I wouldn't encourage you to increase your size. Without saying it, you need to let the employer know that you are a serious, hardworking committed employee.

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actually that is a very very good point ...younger girls do go for the makeup more ..


excellent point


It amazed me to be honest. Every time I left the house with "heavier" make-up, I was ID'd. If I didn't bother, I rarely was. Underage girls don't go au naturale

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I think I'm going to start putting my age in cover letters and somehow insert it into conversation in the interviews. I could try wearing dark lipstick and high heels, but those are two things that I hate. I don't think I should wear them in an interview because chances are I won't be wearing them on the job. High heels hurt my back and for the last few years I've refused to wear them just to look fashionable. I get tired enough at jobs as it is without having a sore back too. I also don't wear red lipstick because I'm allergic to red food colouring.

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You have my body type. And I also wear glasses and have big eyes. And I don't wear high heals. I wear subtle make up. And I'm 5.2. People believe I'm younger than I really am (right now I'm 32). Do not worry about it. I usually state my age in CV's. That solves the problem.

Once I ended up by mistake on a date with a guy who was 18 when I was around 25!! It was loud in a club where we met and I didn't hear his age correctly, plus he looked older. He on the other hand thought I was younger. That was a funny date. Such a shame the guy wasn't older. He was great. lol

Don't worry.

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You might just have to live with it, especially if you're short, and try to compensate with your personality. I know people often underestimate me or even rate my performance lower just because of my appearance. I think I'm coming to the realization that I can't change other people's stereotypes so I just try to be patient with them, think long-term and project confidence. Don't forget that there are downsides to any particular look, whether it is in your personal or working life. If you feel like your appearance is undermining your interviews, try applying for positions where the atmosphere is young or more open-minded and progressive. You'll probably be happier for it too.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I saw an I am 27 badge in a charity shop the other day & was tempted to buy it! I get mistaken for an 18-20 year old which was frustrating in my line of work as people would judge your competence level by your age...luckily not employers though. A part of my perverse, rebellious side enjoys acting my age as it confuses people & makes them aware of their own judgements. I have to say I get sad at the way people treat me in the first few minutes of meeting me (talk down to me) compared with after talking to me (on even keel).

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Natural hair, plain clothes, and minimal to no make up. You'll be surprised at how much difference make up can make, more in the sense of "young people won't leave the house without caking themselves in it".


I disagree here. Make up can go a long way with making a woman look more mature. I'm not saying cake yourself in it, but light makeup will make someone look more mature than no make up at all.


Here's a study that shows that women with makeup were rated as looking more competent than women without. And they make a distinction between professional makeup and "glamorous makeup".

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