I have done something (a little bit) radical. After 35 years as a blonde of various hues I have stopped dying my hair. Or rather (to get to the nub of the issue) I have stopped spending inordinate amounts of time at the hairdressers every six weeks; I have stopped worrying about how much my roots are showing or how I can deal with the sometime straw-like nature of my hair.
The exhilarating feeling of freedom is just wonderful!
It has all been a bit of an adventure, albeit a little one.
You see, I actually had no idea what colour my hair really was. I knew there was some grey, but how much, who knew?
The revelation is that my hair is MUCH darker than it was all those years ago, when it was somewhere among the masses of dirty blondes. Now it is dark without being brown. There is grey. More round the ears than on the top, but a bit glittery and if I say so myself, quite a nice soft grey. I actually rather like it.
It has opened up a whole new palette of colours to me – blacks, red lipstick, reds and oranges. Colours I never actually felt all that happy in before. Now I catch a glance in the mirror and think, who is that devastating woman? (OK, so that bit was a joke…but it did take a little time to get used to the new look me!)
It’s sooooo exciting.
There have of course been comments. Fashion designer daughter said I should immediately go back to being blonde; after a business lunch with my foreign exchange dealer (who was in a bad mood with me because I wouldn’t buy anything she was trying to sell me), she looked at me and said in a caustic voice ‘you’re looking rather grey Helen, time for the hairdresser’ (How rude was that?!!). But on the whole people have been positive. Soft grey probably suits my complexion and personality more than the blond look ever did. An elderly gentleman at church today told me I still looked like a teenager (but I guess all things are relative!)
I have invested in a rather natty short and gamin hairstyle and I have come to the conclusion that if the haircut is good then grey most certainly does not mean old lady.
In my book it means being happy with who I am and where I am in life. It means accepting that I am getting a little older and positively embracing it – together with the feeling of not needing to pretend to anybody or anything that I am something I am not. It says ‘this is me, unashamedly, this is who I am and I am ok with it’.
It is good.
PS. I’m not actually sure my dear husband has even noticed……