Going grey is an inevitable and very natural part of getting older. Unfortunately, in a world where we’ll all in search of eternal youth, or at least the illusion of eternal youth, there is a certain stigma attached to sporting silver strands, and for many of us the idea of going grey gracefully simply doesn’t wash. However, there are women such as actress Dame Helen Mirren, fashion designer and beauty brand founder Linda Rodin, fashion features director at British Vogue Sarah Harris and model Kristen McMenamy who are helping to turn the stigma on its head and give us the confidence to stop covering up, and instead celebrate our individuality and natural beauty. Read on as we discuss how to embrace your greys…
Why Does Hair Go Grey?
As we age, our body produces less melanin, the pigment that gives hair its colour, and it’s this that causes our hair to appear grey. This natural ageing process is genetic but can also be brought be on by stress or illness. There’s no specific age for when we start to go grey as we all have different DNA, “some people go grey as early as in their twenties while others never get a full head of grey hair,” says Nicole Pinto, Oribe Brand Specialist. She suggests looking at your family history for a better indication of when you might expect to start seeing tell-tale signs of silver.
How To Care For Grey Hair
As hair ages and goes grey, it becomes thinner and can appear limp and lifeless, however you can encourage hair growth and restore natural lustre even in grey strands by nourishing the hair follicle with supplements. To help support ageing hair, we recommend taking Ouai Thinning Hair Supplement, which contains nutrients derived from amino acids and essential fatty acids to help promote the production of keratin and ultimately maximise hair’s body and volume.
Ageing hair also naturally lacks oil so tends to become more coarse and frizzy in texture, therefore you will need to alter your haircare routine accordingly. A hydrating, protein-rich hair oil or leave-in treatment used twice weekly will help address texture, meaning the greys take on a silkier, less brittle appearance. Look for lightweight formulas that won’t weigh hair down and cause greasiness, and stay clear of formulas containing harsh chemicals, as these will strip and damage hair further.
We love Briogeo Farewell Frizz Rosehip, Argan & Coconut Oil Blend – a vegan-friendly hair oil free from parabens, artificial dyes, sulphates and silicones that provides extensive conditioning and helps to revive lacklustre locks and return shine.
When it comes to maintenance, switch out your regular shampoo and conditioner for a system that’s specifically designed to eliminate dullness, brighten and get rid of yellow, brassy tones – which grey strands are prone to. We recommend Oribe Silverati – a silver pearl based shampoo and conditioner that contain a blend of silver and blue pigments to counteract the dullness and sallowness that can come with greys, reduce yellow tones and prevent discoloration and boost silver tones by adding shine, softness and manageability.
The First Signs Of Ageing
The process of going grey is a gradual one. We can’t control the rate at which our hair loses its pigment and so while it’s likely that at first you will start to notice the odd grey hair, it’s very unlikely that this will develop into a full head of grey overnight. If you want to even out your hair colour while you’re waiting for more greys to come through, a temporary touch-up tool, such as Oribe’s Aibrush Root Touch Up Spray is a great way to transition gently.
“They come in a multitude of colours, from platinum to black,” says Nicole, “and are very easy to use. Simply shake well before using, and then apply to the desired area.” Colour Wow’s Root Cover Up is another alternative and is a lightweight powder that’s ideal for covering greys and root regrowth and perfecting the hairline. It’s sweat and water resistant too, so no need to worry about it smudging in the rain or during sleep.
The In-Between Stage
If you simply can’t stand the phasing out process, you could choose to go down the dying root temporarily until you have enough greys for your hair to look more even. If you do decide to cover up during this time, leave it to the professionals as covering up greys requires a combination of tones to get the desired outcome. There are certain salon techniques, including balayage and highlighting that can help to camouflage and blend your greys while your hair grows out. Speak to your colourist about short-term, interim action.
Time To Transition
Patience is a virtue, and once your greys really start to come through, you’ll find the process of embracing them a lot easier. Nicole suggests giving your hair a good cut to take the length right down and allow your natural grey hair to blend in more quickly. During this time, it’s advisable to visit your hairdresser every 6 – 8 weeks for a good trim to soften the blend from your previous coloured hair into grey. Remember, everyone’s hair grows at a different rate but regular trims and protecting your hair from breaking is a great way to encourage hair growth. It might take a little time but with regular maintenance and a good product routine you should be ready to embrace your new, natural colour head-on before long.