After 50, life can look pretty rosy. Studies show that those in their 50s are actually happier and less stressed than those in their 20s.
But just because many people feel more positive when they're over 50 doesn't mean they actually want to look like they're over 50.
How we look and how we age is in large part -– about 50 percent -– determined by our genes, meaning there's only so much you can do to alter your natural course. But everyone can make a few minor changes to keep themselves looking young. And often what you don't do is as key as what you do do.
We asked our Facebook fans to help us compile a list of things to steer-clear of in order to avoid looking older. Below are the seven most popular responses. Got anything to add? Let us know in comments.
1) A slouchy posture. Good posture not only makes you look healthier, and possibly even younger, but it also helps you ward off pain. Healthy, aligned bones allow you to breathe easier, which frees your organs to function better so that there's greater circulation throughout your body.
3) Sleeveless tops. Of course you have the right to wear anything you want, but many women feel that -- once their arms start moving about like Jello-O pudding -- it's time to give away the sleeveless tops. If you do want to wear one, you might consider wrapping a scarf or stole around your shoulders. Unless, of course, you have upper arms like Michelle Obama. In that case, forget everything we just said.
4) Shorter hair. There are definitely a slew of hot actresses with short hair. But many of our Facebook fans believe short hair on older women just looks, well, old. Even the the hairdresser who has been responsible for the Queen of England's hair for the past 15 years declared it a big mistake for women in their mid-40s and beyond to have their hair cut short.
5) A monotone hair color. Whether it's blonde, brown or gray, people say hair that's all one color makes them look older. Experts say that monotone hair colors don't work on anyone though, and that if you color your hair at home, you should choose a color that's a shade lighter than the one you want.
6) Bad bras. Although a French study found that bras provide no benefits to young women, older women with sagging breasts probably need a good bra designed to keep those babies UP there. Experts say a quality bra can make your breasts look the same as they did 20 years ago.
7) Super sensible shoes. Sure, no one wants to see you killing yourself by wandering around in a pair of stilettos. But shoes with thick rubber soles or squarish tips can age even the slickest, trendiest clothing ensemble. A better choice might be wedges or pointy-toed styles that are at least half a size larger than you usually wear so that they don't restrict your toes.
Earlier on HuffPost50:
There are several reasons why a sugar-filled diet makes you look older. When there is excess sugar in the body, it attaches itself to collagen, making the skin look stiff and inflexible. According to "<a href="http://www.amazon.com/Diet-Myths-Busted-Nutrition-Fiction/dp/1882883837" target="_blank">Diet Myths Busted; Food Facts Not Nutrition Fiction</a>" by Ann A. Rosenstein, "losing this elastic resilience of young skin will give the skin deep wrinkles and make it look old."
Like sugar, excess trans fats make the skin look stiff and inflexible. "Trans fats clog and stiffen the arteries and smaller blood vessels," which makes the skin look old, wrote Rosenstein.
<a href="http://galtime.com/article/health/39603/24699/foods-can-make-you-look-youngerolder#axzz2RUQr5YSS" target="_blank">Salt dehydrates the body</a>. When you are dehydrated, you become fatigued, which makes you look tired and worn out. In addition, <a href="http://www.beliefnet.com/Health/Healthy-Living/Foods-that-Make-You-Look-Old.aspx?p=4" target="_blank">excess salt contributes to kidney disease, high blood pressure and interferes with bone metabolism</a>.
<a href="http://galtime.com/article/health/39603/24699/foods-can-make-you-look-youngerolder#axzz2RUQr5YSS" target="_blank">Coffee and caffeinated products also dehydrate the body</a>, making you look tired and worn out.
The <a href="http://www.beliefnet.com/Health/Healthy-Living/Foods-that-Make-You-Look-Old.aspx?b=1&p=11" target="_blank">sugar in candy causes inflammation</a> in the body and can make skin look wrinkled and old.
Artificial sweeteners such as <a href="http://www.beliefnet.com/Health/Healthy-Living/Foods-that-Make-You-Look-Old.aspx?b=1&p=7" target="_blank">aspartame are associated with headaches and joint pain</a> and can make you crave sweets.
Consuming too much alcohol dehydrates your body and causes wrinkles, loss of collagen, redness and puffiness, according to "<a href="http://www.doctoroz.com/blog/jodi-sawyer-rn/how-fast-can-alcohol-age-you" target="_blank">The Dr. Oz Show</a>."
<a href="http://www.doctoroz.com/slideshow/mistakes-age-you#slide-2" target="_blank">Energy drinks damage the enamel in your teeth</a> eight times more than soda does. This erosion makes your teeth look yellow and unhealthy, according to Dr. Oz.
An overconsumption of carbohydrates can damage the collagen and fibers in your skin, according to <a href="http://www.webmd.com/diet/features/is-your-diet-aging-you" target="_blank">WebMD</a>.
<a href="http://galtime.com/article/health/39603/24699/foods-can-make-you-look-youngerolder#axzz2RUQr5YSS" target="_blank">Fried food contributes to collagen break down in the skin</a>, making one's skin look wrinkled and worn out, according to GalTime.com.
As a beverage high in sugar, <a href="http://galtime.com/article/health/39603/24699/foods-can-make-you-look-youngerolder#axzz2RUQr5YSS" target="_blank">soda tends to dehydrate the body</a>. This fatigues the body and makes you look tired. "A good rule of thumb is to drink half your body weight in ounces. So if you weight 130 lbs, you need 65 ounces of water a day -- just over eight cups," according to GalTime.com.