Just stop! It’s time to throw shade on Instagram grey hair

Sophia Hilton, the yellow-haired founder of one of the UK’s most exciting hair heavens, Not Another Salon – it scooped the Most Wanted Award for Best Salon Experience dontchaknow! – has an Instagram feed that’s chock full of envelope-pushing colours and shades. However, Ms Hilton feels the need to have some #RealTalk with anyone desperately wanting that ebony-into-silver grey colour bleed before they take a seat in the salon…

“A few years ago, images of grey hair started to pop up on Instagram and Pinterest and a whole trend – one that had been on and off for years, I might add – exploded. I’d like to talk specifically about the type of grey that has black/almost black, coloured-in roots. Yes, I agree these pictures look incredible and this is why a rather tragic situation has occurred. Let me explain…

“The way in which a hairdresser creates almost black next to almost white is more complex than it seems. All-dark colour is actually made up of a lot of red (though you can’t see it to the naked eye) meaning that the hairdresser is fighting a hard battle between your hair looking too yellow, too green or your hair falling out. You might not have realised it before, but grey is complex and fairly impractical for most people.

“But this rant is about those images that inspired other hairdressers to produce more extreme dark-to-light grey images. Those pictures are not about you, the client; they are about the hairdresser, showing off what they can do… for a day, at least.

“Because when you have almost black on the roots and white grey ends, God help you when you want to change (or even take the grey one inch higher)! Hairdressers feel the pressure to keep up with these impossible creations seen on Instagram and many are left feeling that they are simply not good enough colourists. Well, they are good enough. Just because you can do something, it doesn’t mean you should.

“Let’s all remember who is the most important in all this… it’s you, the client. Anyone can make you look good for a day, for that all-important Instagram post. Your hairdresser should want to make you look good for EVERY day, not leave you with hair that is close to ruined.

“So, if you are tempted by those silver tones, please think long and hard about what it takes to get it, and the impact it will have on your hair. And whatever you do, ensure your colourist is using a protective colour bonder, like Innoluxe, to make sure your hair stays as healthy as possible. You want hair that looks great long after that Instagram shot has dropped off your followers’ feed…”