On the Greydar: Alys Fowler
My greydar whirred into action, last week, when gardening journalist and author Alys Fowler posted a photo of her new haircut and discussed embracing her natural hair colour on Instagram. Here’s what she said:
‘If I was a man would I be writing about this? Part of me is quite sure I wouldn’t, I shouldn’t be. I’d like to say I don’t care, but I’d be lying. I am going grey, naturally. I’ve struggled with this one, it’s such a big part of my identity, my red hair, but now it’s more salt and chilli than anything else. I’ve contemplated long and hard about dyeing it, but when I thought about the time, to say little of the money and I worked out what it might add up to over the next decade. Well, I could buy more garden with that! So I chopped it off instead and the grey blends in much better now. (The lovely Vicki at Essensuals cuts my hair. I’ve been slowly getting shorter and shorter, so she knew it was coming). If it decides to go all white, I think I’ll grow it again. Till then I’m enjoying the release from all that red hair and wild curls. It’s utterly liberating, not that I exactly styled it before mind…’
‘…However, if I dyed it I would look younger. It’s not that grey hair ages me, it is my age, it’s just we’re supposed to chase the other direction. To go back to the beginning, I could have spent this time writing or reading or doing something far more interesting. Still here I am, going grey and writing about it. I’d like to thank @thatsnotmyage, who’s blog and insta has been brilliant at championing not just grey hair, but the awkward in-between. I think I might have caved in and dyed my hair if it wasn’t for Alyson’s inspiration.’
Whoop. What a lovely surprise. Alys and I have never met but we follow each other online, and to hear that That’s Not My Age can have such a positive impact fills me with joy. When I started blogging I wanted to provide options for ageing, to show there are many ways to grow older and to empower women; knowing that I’ve achieved this goal makes all the hours spent slogging at the keyboard, the sweat and the tears worthwhile. I messaged Alys to say thank you, asked how she felt a few days later and what kind of response she’d had to her haircut in real life:
‘As a redhead it takes a very long time to go completely white, my dad in his eighties still has the sheen of red, but the red fades dramatically. I just felt rather dull. But with short hair and a good haircut, I feel stylish rather than fading. I think because I like this haircut so much I carry myself differently and thus I get a good response wherever I go. You can be many things with unruly curly hair, but sleek isn’t one of them, for the first time I feel in control. And that suits where I’ve got with my age, I’m 40 and ready for this decade.’
It’s not about age, it’s about mindset. More on grey hair HERE.