Grey Hair. The end of the world for some, the hailing in of the new era for others and certainly the reason so many salons are still in business! When my first grey hair was somewhat tactlessly pointed out to me by a former colleague I was absolutely horrified, certain that 29 was definitely too young to be cursed with this hair that in my mind meant i was on the rapid descent into old age. A somewhat dramatic response to the perfectly natural process of losing pigment in certain hair strands, but quite a common one I have since come to notice. It seems that in the past the vast majority of us thought the presence of grey hair was frankly a disaster and tantamount to the end of our professional careers should any of those silver strands be spotted. These days more people are accepting the inevitable and are deciding that instead of hiding their ever expanding family of white hairs, they wish to enhance them. Embracing your natural highlights doesn’t necessarily mean no colour, you don’t have to jump straight to blonde and you absolutely don’t have to go boring! While there are many ways in which you can incorporate those silvers, I generally stick to my three favourite’s; semi permanent colours, foils and toners.
The beauty of the semi permanent colour is that it will not lighten any natural hairs and it will slowly fade over time. Grey hairs are often resistant to colour and the gentle nature of the semi won’t always fully cover them, giving you a beautiful multi tonal colour that grows out seamlessly. If it’s an enhanced version of your natural beauty you are aiming for, without the obvious regrowth, a semi permanent is the way forward particularly if you only have a sprinkle of sparkles to contend with.
Foils are by far the most popular choice for our team at BACH Hair. There are literally hundreds of options for achieving a gorgeous colour with foil, and the adaptable techniques give you total control over the coverage you can achieve. You could have 2 or 200, bold stripes or barely there babylights, whatever it is that gives you the colour of your dreams. If blonde is the Chris Hemsworth of foil, brunette is the Liam and you should never underestimate the power of the slightly lesser known sibling! Lowlights in a colour close to your natural gives you a bit more pepper than salt as the saying goes and can be a beautiful way to still feel dark and soften that hard line of growth. Blonde foils are brilliant at showcasing the lovely natural highlights present in your hair and can be used as a base to achieve anything from sun kissed caramels and perfect platinums to purple peek-a-boos and vibrant red flashes.
What happens when the white invades and conquers? My personal favourite grey embracing technique is the toner. Most commonly used as a tool to refine blondes, the humble toner is a colour powerhouse. Lasting 4-6 weeks a toner on grey hair fades to almost nothing giving you a no commitment colour and endless options for change. Lavender, cream, strawberry, steel, latte, smoke, this is the new and improved blue rinse. Think sheer shiny coverage and subtly elegant colour injection. The perfect solution for when you are over the endless cycle of hiding the “old grey mare” and want to embrace the gold medal showpony beneath.
It can be difficult to transition from full coverage colour to letting some natural shine through, from both an emotional and a technical view. Be prepared for a ‘journey’ and make sure you have realistic expectations for what the interim period will be like. I always recommend people commit to six months, as it will take at least that long to get to a point where you can truly get a sense for what the goal colour will look like. Talk to your stylist and make sure you are both on the same page, and are both comfortable with the plan. If you aren’t ready and the last 5 mins reading just made you break out in hives don’t worry, we love doing any sort of colour! If you fancy being a chestnut beauty instead of the silver laced possum colour you were born with, go for it! I’ll be there with you, spending 4hrs in the salon with my children running riot, lightening that possum hair and pretending I’m naturally pastel pink. If only I were more grey….