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How to make Grey Hair White

BY SALLY MADISON
NATIONAL COLOR TRAINER

WHITE HAIR CAN BE GREAT IF YOU ARE LOOKING TO TAKE A CLIENT BLONDE

  • The color in the hair comes from the melanin in the hair.
  • As we get older, there tends to be less melanin in the hair.
  • When there is no melanin in the hair, its color turns to white.
  • Initially this happens on one hair strand, then another, then another.
  • Obviously it will happen at the roots first -- so that is where we look when we want to determine how much white hair a client has.
  • The fact that does not contain melanin is actually good news if you want to turn that white hair blonde.

WHITE HAIR DOES HOWEVER HAVE SOME ISSUES

  • It can often be coarse and very dry and also very rough.
  • Sometimes it can have a slightly yellow aspect. 
  • "Salt and pepper" hair has its own challenges.
  • The dark hair tends to stick out and it can be surprisingly difficult to get a flawless grey coverage on such hair.

HOW SHOULD YOU COLOR GREY HAIR OR WHITE HAIR

  • If the white hair is very tough & rough and resistant to coloring, you can try the technique below.
  • Pre-wash such resistant white hair with 20 Vol developer alone.
  • This technique, known in French as "Mordancage", is surprisingly effective with very resistant white hair.
  • When doing so, apply all over, leave to soak 20 minutes. 
  • Then do your color or bleach application.
  • The soak in developer will help open up the hair cuticle and soften it, making it easier to color and bleach.

TAKING A CLIENT WITH WHITE HAIR BLONDE

  • When you want to take a client with grey hair completely white blonde, here is how you do it"

First Step: Bleach the hair very very well.

  • You don't want dark hairs standing out against the white at the end.
  • Plus grey hair can be surprisingly stubborn & difficult to lift.
  • In the video tutorial below we actually used 40 Vol developer with our Brilliant Blonde Bleach.
  • So lift the hair until it is totally white. 
  • You can eliminate this step only if the hair is already 100% white.

Second Step: Purple Shampoo to rinse.

  • Purple shampoo will help you get rid of the yellowish aspect which grey hair sometimes has.
  • Do two washes - it will help push the hair towards white. 

Third Step: Intense Pearl Blonde Toner 

  • Use Intense Pearl Blonde toner and 20 Vol and take the hair to pure white blonde. 

WATCH VIDEO TUTORIAL BELOW:

Hair by Bozey Tedstone

MAINTAINING WHITE HAIR

  • The key thing with maintaining white hair that has been blonded is purple shampoo and mask.
  • This will help maintain the color long after the visit to the salon, and stop the hair turning brassy or yellow.

DON'T FORGET THE CUT

  • A great cut can make all the difference after the coloring.
  • In general, a precision bob cut or a graduated bob cut does wonders on an older woman & can make her look chic, sophisticated and smart.
  • So don't forget the cut!
About the author

Sally has been a hair colorist and trainer for many years in both the US & Europe. She currently does hair color training for Ugly Duckling. She also helps develop new & awesome products for the brand.

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