Women are increasingly embracing their grey hair. So much so that the phenomenon can even be seen on the red carpets, worn by Hollywood celebrities, but also during official ceremonies on royal heads such as those of Kate Middleton and Letizia of Spain.
Since the recent lockdowns and the advent of working from home, many more women have begun to accept their grey hair and have given up hiding it with intensive colouring. The reasons? A need for naturalness, fed up with being dependent on colourists, and are more and more seduced by the charms of silvery hair...
These many reasons have convinced thousands of women to accept themselves as they are. But beware, in order to go for the 100% grey look, there are a few guidelines to follow. Hairdresser Delphine Courteille lists all the steps to follow before starting.
1. Let your roots grow in
It's a little unsightly and not very easy to do, but nevertheless, letting your roots grow back is mandatory. This allows the colourist to very precisely analyse the natural hair, its colour (steel, white, vanilla, mousey grey...) but also the percentage of white hair, from pepper and salt to white everywhere.
2. Choose the right style
Grey hair does not have the same texture as coloured hair. For one thing, it is denser and can look frizzy. It is important to have a good head of hair and to style it the right way, such as a well-structured style that reduces the messy effect that grey hair can sometimes have.
3. Mentally prepare yourself to have grey hair
Mentally prepare yourself first of all, because the transition to grey hair can sometimes be a bit stressful and it's quite a journey before getting there. Grey is more and more accepted these days, but we’re not quite there yet. Going grey is also about coming to terms with your age. Then think about your clothing style, because apart from the radical change of hairstyle when you go grey, the colours of your outfits are not going to match in the same way as they do with brown, red, or blonde hair. The same goes for accessories and make-up.
4. Follow these steps according to your natural hair colour
When you have dark or black hair
The hair should have 1 to 2 inches of regrowth. A balayage is then done with dark locks on the top of the head and around the contours of the face. This allows the hair to blend between the roots and the lengths and avoids having a two-tone effect. This is done over a long period of several months and is cut a little more each time until natural-looking hair is achieved. Namely, when you are a brunette, your natural hair will first be mousey grey or steel grey, before gradually evolving towards white.
When you have blond or light brown hair
It's easier than on brown hair. You proceed in the same way, with a balayage in order to have a fade between the lengths and the regrowth. Namely, when you are blonde, natural hair will go white, with a tendency towards beige.
When you have red hair
Colouring red hair is the most difficult. But the advantage is that red hair ages very well. Avoid colouring the hair and let the grey hair appear naturally. For those who already have colour-treated hair, switch to a vegetable hair colour, because it coats the hair without changing its colour, allowing it to go transparent. This does not colour the hair but shades it. This transparency is allowed to slowly take hold of the hair and the colourist chooses a lighter and lighter colour until the hair turns a natural white.
5. Caring for your grey hair
As we said before, grey hair tends to be frizzy, but also very dry. It is important to have well-moisturised hai,. Rely on oil baths, masks, and treatments. Beware, grey hair tends to turn yellow, especially if exposed to the sun or cigarette smoke. To avoid this, it can be treated with a specific type of shampoo or treatment.
In her salon, Delphine Courteille does a keratin bath followed by working the hair in the desired direction. The hair is then sleek, silky, shiny and well cared for, and the effects are visible for up 3 to 4 months after the treatment.