It’s hard to believe the holidays are just around the corner! Another year bites the dust and at a much-too-rapid rate. That means we’re not getting any younger.

The good news is there is a lot of things, big and small, out there so that we don’t have to look or feel older. Yes, there’s plastic surgery – and it is expensive. However, a great haircut and color could take 10 years off your appearance and cost much less.

Besides that, contrary to some beliefs, one doesn’t have to be a slave to the salon. If your hair is done properly, you could look years younger without breaking the bank.

The shape of the haircut is of most importance. The fullness of your style must be at the level of your eyes and cheekbones in order to draw attention there – instead of accenting the neck, chin and jowls.

Changing the shape of your haircut alone will turn back time. My theory of the upside-down triangle-shaped haircut stands firm. The widest part of your style needs to be at your eyes and cheekbones; the narrowest part needs to be softening your chin.

Depending on the size of your forehead, a soft bang or side bang will also soften your look, taking attention away from those little lines that sometimes the rear their ugly heads. No more Botox!

Gray hair is an absence of color, washing out any kind of warmth in your skin and, again, aging your look.

If highlights and/or low lights are added, they will grow out gracefully without the ugly stripe of gray that appears after a short time if you have your hair all one color. That’s not attractive, and it doesn’t look natural. Add to that the fact that the more gray that is hiding under the color, the sooner it needs to be re-colored.

Many other things can be done to make your hair subtle warmer, brighter, and more youthful. Who wouldn’t want that for Christmas? A younger-looking you is not that expensive if you go to the right places.

Eating right, exercising, and staying busy are common recommendations to stay looking and feeling your best. Really, though, the number one priority is when you look in the mirror. That will start your day the right way or the wrong way – you be the judge.

Maybe a new hair style, cut or color could be your great start to the new year.

Joy Ross is owner of Style It Salon in Old Town Bluffton. styleitsalon.com