Greyt Expectations

Post by C.M.

“Oh look, a very, very light blonde hair! Oh, another one!” I exclaimed to the stylist, on examining the mirror after a hair cut a month or two ago, “I was blonde as a child you know!” I wasn’t, not even a little bit; my hair colour as a toddler was as mousey as it is today. That was no blonde hair. Denial isn’t just a river in Egypt you know, it’s a few strands of white springing up, unexpectedly, off the top of ones head.

I have always been averse to dying my hair. Apart from a few forays into 6-8 washes I’ve mostly remained au natural, primarily as a result of laziness and lack of funds. As TM went blonde in our teenage years (“So people can finally tell us apart!” she told our dubious parents) I remained tawny, with a hint of bronze (in certain lights). But what now, with this new development? Should I finally succumb to the (bleach) bottle? With a birthday coming up the significance of aging is all the more on my mind – maybe a blind eye with the help of a daring new look would turn back the years for another little while.


Mossy has the “I still look better than you and you know it” stance down to a silvery tee

Up until recently the pressure to conceal ones advancing years by way of an artificial hair colour was solely on women; men were reassured that they looked distinguished and mature – and they did! However have you noticed the recent abundance of TV ads aimed at perfectly acceptable looking silver foxes, to follow in their female friends’ footsteps? The quest for the fountain of youth isn’t a new one in the case of both sexes, but with a generation of Botoxed, frozen, face-lifted Peter Pans before us, perhaps a cautionary tale is coming to an end.

Really, that may not be such an unlikely prospect. Luckily for me, my principles, patience (and bank balance), grey appears to be the new brunette. Rhianna has recently joined Lady Gaga, Kelly Osbourne and the legions of others in the public eye to go so far as to dye their hair the metallic shade. None other than Angelina Jolie has allowed her locks to salt and pepper themselves with sophisticated and chic results, similarly to Kate Moss and her blonde alternative. Compare Meryl Streep’s Donna in Mamma Mia!, chasing her youth in loose blonde tresses and dungarees and Meryl Streep’s Miranda Priestly in The Devil Wears Prada, embracing her sexy silver side. There’s a certain icy coolness to letting your hair grow old gracefully, an I-don’t-care-I-still-look-fabulous nonchalance. There’s also something refreshing about allowing your laughter lines express themselves the way they were intended to.


BL-7  Meryl could pull off a clown wig, who are we kidding, but I prefer the Prada look

For those of us in our late 20s and early 30s it is a little more difficult to accept the snowy strands mixing with our youthful original colour. But I’ve noticed an increasing amount of women in my own age group put up with it, even embrace it. There are many ways to remain looking good for your life’s entirety, eating well and exercising and not taking minor things too seriously amongst them. Anyway, in my opinion those stray hairs mingling intriguingly with the others look a whole lot better than 2 inches of root regrowth.

I may feel differently in the future, but for now I’m going to leave my barnet be.  I understand that those who have gone grey very early and rapidly will have wanted to cover up, especially in their early twenties, and colouring your hair isn’t just for covering grey – it’s brilliant for a change once in a while and for expressing your personal style. But having never really had the motivation to manage the upkeep of a good dye job I am inclined to stick with my natural tresses. At least until someone offers me a seat on the bus that is, or worse, asks to see my bus pass. I’m all for acting my age, but there are certainly some things that can wait another few decades


Cruella deVille, 28

Love the screw-you hair; the stretched, grey skin not so much. Don’t smoke, kids!

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