One of my Facebook friends Doug Macintosh Color Director at John Sahag Salon in NewYork City had someone ask this question on his blog. Below is the link to his blog page.
Anonymous asked: At what point should a woman who's been coloring her hair for decades "come out" and go gray? How does one judge you're at that point when there's lots of color in your hair but none in your face? And how to make the transition?
You know, here’s the real question, why do you want to “come out ” as grey? We never lose the undertones in our eyes and skin, they only reason you would look colorless in your face is because you have either the wrong hair color or the wrong make-up on. I have clients of all ages, some in their 80’s and 90’s, God Bless ‘em , they are in every 4 weeks to hide the gray, and look wonderful.
I don’t think only you will know when, you want to stop looking younger and start looking older, because no matter if you have the right eye color and skin tone, gray will still make you look older, or perceived to be older.
That being said if you want to transition, there a a few ways. First ask yourself, do I have the right eye color and skin tone to wear gray hair? is my gray pretty? I think people who have pale pink/bluish undertones in their skin and robins egg blue eyes, or dark coal brown eyes and olive undertones in their skin make the best candidates for wearing gray hair.
The best way to transition is the slowest. But the best transitions are slow. So this is how I would transition a level 5 (or brown) client slowly.
Instead of putting on her single process, I would now foil in it, in pieces, omitting a percentage of her gray hair. I might then start foiling some pieces around her face with lightener, bringing these pieces up to pale pale yellow. Now we really can’t replicate the way nature puts in gray, but we can get close. The lightened pieces should be very fine,spaced apart broken slices in foils. Not weaves and not slices, but an in-between of the two. Now glaze her with a glaze that matches her gray…if it is gray you may want to try 08T in shades EQ by redken, if it is more white, maybe just a shimmer lights shampoo and a clear glaze. As you proceed with this client over the coming months put in less highlights and low-lights with bigger spaces. This gives her the chance to evaluate it and decide if this is really for her or not. Also friends,family and co-workers will not notice a big change.
Now the other ways are to grow it for 8 weeks and get a very very short funky haircut, and that’s it you’re gray.
The other and in my opinion, the ugliest way is to just stop coloring it….
That being said,I AM A HAIRCOLORIST, I AM NOT IN THE BUSINESS TO STOP COLORING HAIR OR MAKE SOME ONE LOOK OLDER, LOL. SO MY SUGGESTION WOULD BE NEVER GO GRAY.