Last year, girls rocked hot granny grey hair. Now the guys are falling hard for the look, too. From Bieber to global soccer stars, silver is the way to go. Here, we share all the secrets to get your male clients rocking the perfect grey to channel that silver fox look.
Male Celebrities Sporting the Silver Hair Trend
“There’s definitely a big trend for greyish blonde in men’s hair colour at the moment,” confirms Ramsey Sayah, owner of award-winning Texture Hair Salon in Ottawa and blogger at DearHairdresser.ca. “We’re seeing a lot of young professionals come in the salon asking for all-over silver—not just streaks or highlights like in the past.”
Teens, too, embraced the trend the second Bieber snapped pics of his silver-blonde coif on Instagram last summer. And when global soccer superstars Lionel Messi and Aaron Ramsey started experimenting with the look, it became even more relatable and approachable for salon clients. Because trends often begin with celebrities and then filter down to the mainstream, “It makes you feel secure when you see others wearing a certain style,” says Sayah.
Older men? “Naturally, grey hair blends superbly well with these cool hues, and it’s a style right now,” says Sayah. “It’s definitely an interesting time for more mature guys to experiment with their silver.”
How to Get the Look with Naturally Grey Hair
Most men are okay with embracing their natural greys. “It’s a cool and sexy style for the 30-to-50 set,” says Gianpaolo Colombo, Sebastian Professional Design Team artist and art director at Hairafter Salon & Spa in Toronto and winner of Sebastian Professional’s 2016 What’s Next Awards.
“If you want to transition your regular client who comes in for colour without losing that income, you can start working in some lowlights,” recommends Colombo. “And if he’s really ready to drop colour altogether and flaunt his greys, we do a Cellophane Ice Blond gloss, which has a purple hue that gives a fresh and vibrant look to greys and protects hair from UV rays.”
In terms of cut and finish, since natural grey hair tends to be a bit dry and drier hair produces flyaways and stray hairs that stick out, “You want to keep it really short on the sides, with a tight fade, and a bit longer on top like a pompadour,” advises Colombo.
Customizing the Right Grey for Your Male Clients
“My favourite way to create a striking silver head of hair is to first lighten the hair as much as possible, bringing it to a level nine or 10 with Blondor by Wella Professionals at 20 volumes for 20 minutes,” says Sayah. If it’s not pale enough, he repeats the process until the hair reaches the desired level. For clients with lighter hair as a starting point, he uses a high-lift blonde in a 40 volume.
To select the toner, Sayah usually asks clients to pick the hair they like online by using Google images on a phone or tablet. Really? Why not the colour chart? “People’s perception of colour is always closer to what they want if they see it on someone else.”
Next, choose a very cool ash tone in a demi-permanent or deposit formula. “I really like the toners offered in the Wella Professionals Ilumina Color and Re-lights series. There are just so many to choose from, so you can customize the colour as much as you want.”
Here are some go-to products Sayah and Colombo recommend for getting that sterling silver look:
Photo: Hair: Michael Francos; Makeup: Lan Nguyen-Grealis; Styling: Jackie Ambrose; Photo: Gary Nunn