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Going Gray Gracefully


Gray Hair……At Its Best

“To color or not to color,” that is the question that many women ask themselves when the first strands of white appear. The trend today is to embrace the natural gray. Going gray gracefully can liberate oneself from monthly expense of time and money trying to stay ahead of the regrowth. If you opt to wear your hair naturally gray and “wear it best”…You must be impeccably dressed at all times, your clothes current, your makeup perfect, and your hair style should be smooth, soft and chic.

Beautiful Model looking over her shoulder - Going Gray GracefullyThere is a misconception amongst women that hair doesn’t gray until your fifties, sixties or older. This is absolutely not the case. The average person will begin to notice gray as early as their mid-to late twenties. There are exceptions, of course – there are people who gray as young as thirteen or as old as eighty, but these extremes are rare. Oddly enough, women who gray much later in life are actually more obsessed with the implication of going gray than women who gray at an earlier age. The implication being, “I’m getting old.” The truth is, scientists have not found a link between gray hair and actual age in the body, but it doesn’t stop women from feeling old when they find their first white strand. Women who gray younger do not see it as aging, but as a problem that needs to be solved and an excuse to experiment with hair color.

No matter what age one starts to gray, very few end up with naturally beautiful silvery-white hair that looks youthful and gorgeous. Most of us need help from a hair color expert to achieve “young, beautiful hair.”Today, there are endless options and techniques to color gray hair. It all depends on the client – her age, lifestyle, commitment to upkeep, adventurous or timid nature, and many other factors that will determine the technique that is used.

One of the most popular technique is multi-shading…it turns gray mousy hair into beautiful natural blond, brunette, or redhead. The concept behind multi-shading is that all strands of hair get color, starting from the darkest, which might be close to the darkest strands on your head, to the lightest. When the hair grows, the lightest strands will blend into the gray, allowing the line of demarcation to be less noticeable. Depending on the degree of lightness or darkness, this technique will allow you to go six to twelve weeks before needing a retouch. If done correctly, results are stunning and the hair becomes shiny and healthy with lots of depth, turning mousy gray into “young beautiful hair”!

If you have twenty-five percent gray or less and don’t want any major changes, you can use a semi-permanent color similar to your natural shade to blend in the grays. A product such as Wella Color Touch can be used for this process; it will allow you to go six to nine weeks before needing a retouch, and will add shine and body to your hair.

gray-manA popular way to blend color in gray without too much upkeep is toweave fine, medium or heavy highlights. Depending on the final desired look, and degree of lightness, this can be done with bleach or color…. or both! This process will allow you to go two to three months before needing a retouch.

Salt and pepper gray hair can be enhanced by adding fine, medium, or heavy silver-platinum streaks using a technique calledPEARLIZING. Strands of hair are strategically picked in areas that will best brighten the hair and face and bleached to silvery white. This will allow mousy gray hair to become prettier and brighter. This technique will allow you to go two to three months before needing a retouch.

blond-frontThe reverse can be done to salt and pepper hair by adding dark strands to select areas of the head in the shade of your natural color. This technique is called Low-Lighting and by leaving a few natural white strands on the head, it makes the color more believable and long lasting. This method is great for those that have skin allergies since color does not touch the scalp. It can last two to three months before needing to retouch. This method works best on men since complete coverage on shorter hair makes it look artificial; however, men will need retouching more frequently.

The easiest method to cover gray is a single process blond. A light shade of blond is applied all over the head and processed for a specific amount of time. If the right formulation is applied, you can achieve a natural looking color with natural highlights. The salt and pepper in the hair will color differently, leaving the hair naturally shaded. This process needs to be retouched every four to six weeks. Single process is also used for brunettes and redheads, but the contrast between the gray and the rich warm hues is greater therefor needing touch ups more frequently.

The secret to beautifully colored hair is shading……Hair must have subtle tones of light to dark ….. whatever color you choose to have!

brunette-frontGray hair is not any coarser than pigmented hair; it only appears to be that way because the white strands stand out. If you had thick coarse hair before you started to gray, you’ll have the same texture after you gray. If your hair was limp and fine, it will still be limp and fine after graying. Tohelp gray hair stay supple and moisturized, use very little shampoo aimed only at the scalp without involving the hair shaft. Also conditioner must be applied to the hair shaft only– it should be absorbed by the hair, and any excess rinsed out. This method leaves the hair balanced; a clean scalp and supple, moisturized shaft, yielding plenty of body and ease of styling. For extra smoothness, you may apply silicone oil to the hair shaft before and after styling.

“Gray Hair at 25? Yes. Here’s What You Can Do”U.S. News Health
“Age doesn’t matter when you see those first gray strands,” says Anne Marie Barros, a master colorist at Gerard Bollei Salon in New York. “But unlike the limited, damaging choices of yesteryear, today’s treatments range from the understated to the dramatic and everything in between. Most of my younger clients start to have fun with the range of choices, which cancels out their initial angst.” Read Full Article >>

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