Are you ready to go grey?

Instagram is awash with pictures of younger women under 30 (#granny hair) copying the famous celebrities who have dared to go grey including Kelly Osbourne, Kate Moss and Lady Gaga.

Sarah Harris, fashion features director at British ‘Vogue’ wrote a stinging attack in the Daily Telegraph  on 30th July  on hairdresser Nicky Clarke who said it would be an all out ‘disaster’ for  the Duchess of Cambridge to reveal any more grey roots!

Older men have been labelled ‘distinguished’ for their greying locks while women have traditionally been labelled ‘old and grannyish’ for allowing their hair to go grey. A multi million pound hair dye industry is only too happy to reinforce this stereotype.

But could the latest grey hair trend on the cat walks, sported by younger models and celebrities, be the beginning of the end of our slavish, high maintenance need to cover grey?

Even if we do allow grey to run its course, the gorgeous Sarah Harris, in the picture on the left,whose own hair went grey at 16, reminds us that ‘silver’ hair takes some expensive looking after too, if it’s to look its best ( but not as expensive as dyeing it every 4 week). Harris recommends the Philip Kingsley range of shampoos ‘to take out discoloration caused by pollution, chlorine and the sun to keep it on the brighter side of steel.’  If you are lucky, you will have soft and silken silver hair,like her, rather than course and wiry hair. She insists that going silver is not a sign of ‘giving up’ but rather, the ultimate sign of confidence.

Should I  be brave and go silver after 20 years of dyeing my hair brown? My hair stylist’s advice: do it if you must, but do it with professional stripping back and highlighting to allow a gradual shift from brown to silver.

Whether you go silver, cover your roots or don’t know what that’s all about yet, my advice for looking after your hair and keeping it in tip top condition is to:

  • Visit the hairdresser at least 6 weekly for regular cuts. Get the best cut you can afford. It’s an investment in your confidence and credibility and will cut down on the time you spend styling it.
  • If you can afford it and are not ready to go silver yet, then have it professionally coloured to avoid colour build up on the ends.
  • If you are on a tight budget, colour it yourself ( full head colour every few months – root tint every 4-6 weeks)
  • Have a treatment every 6 weeks and invest in professional colour saving shampoos and conditioners to keep it looking great between cuts.
  • When roots first show through, use an instant root cover spray like Charles Worthington ‘Colour at Home’ which covers grey in an instant and washes out. This allows me to visit the salon every 6 weeks rather than every 4.
  • As you get older, allow your hair to lighten in shade.
  • When considering if silver hair will suit you, my professional advice is: probably only if you have a cool skin tone ( winter or summer). Warm skin tones ( spring and autumn) will not suit silver hair any more than you will  suit wearing silver or grey colours next to your skin; it’s best to keep colouring your hair- warm golden-ish tones  for springs and auburn,red- brown, warm red highlights for autumns.
  • See an Image Consultant for essential advice on which season you are and advice on the best hair colours for you.  I always include this advice as part of my colour analysis . In my experience, many hairdressers lack the specialist  colour analysis training that a trained Image Consultant will give you.

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