We're braver and bolder with our hair color than ever before, seasonally experimenting with navy blues, bubblegum pinks, and sunset oranges. Where daring, not always office-friendly colors were once reserved for edgy subcultures, now you'd be hard-pressed to walk down a city street without seeing a flash of Technicolor out of the corner of your eye.
The statistics don't lie: According to the 2017 edition of hair care brand L’Oréal Professionnel's annual survey, a quarter of women polled said they were now more likely to try a bold or pastel hair color than they were a year ago — an indication of how much has changed in our approach to hair.
We're always on the lookout for the next, most cutting-edge way to refresh our color, whether that means updating our balayage for autumn or trying a new coloring technique entirely — and naturally, we're also looking ahead to the trends that will define hair color in 2018.
Award-winning colorist Jack Howard, of London's posh Paul Edmonds salon, tells us the future is all about all things metallic — namely, silver and gold. "We're beginning to see a huge increase in guests asking for metallic-inspired color in the salon," he says. "I think that it's partly due to the transition of the trend from glossy finishes to metallic on the catwalk. We've also seen the metallic element continued into makeup looks."
Think metallics sound a little out there? Josh Wood, Redken's Global Color Creative Director, disagrees. He's also touting metallic hair for 2018, and insists it's perfectly wearable. "What's the point of developing a color if it's not going to be used in salons? It's not going to have a relevance," he says. "I'm working with people who are celebrating their natural gray, but at the same time, 20-year-olds are coming into the salon wanting to be bleached with gray applied on top."
Wood, who's launching six new Shades EQ colors with Redken, including a polished silver and a medium gray-steel, is fully on board with metallic hair for 2018. "Before, gray was never a color — it was either a background or an accent," he says. "I love the idea that you can create a multi-tone of grays, with different hues. We're getting more sophisticated with it."
The gray spectrum is perfect for any and every age, but every hair type? Jack, who helped develop L'Oréal Professionnel's Metals by Majirel permanent hair-color collection, an in-salon service that promises transformative shine, assures us it's for all hair types and textures: "It's important to have a thorough consultation with your colorist before your appointment to determine your desired shade and the journey that you may need to take in order to get to the final look."
If all-out silver sounds too bold a first step, the Majirel Metals can actually be used as a glaze to add shine to existing color, too. The hyper-reflective gloss can add a metallic impact to copper, brunette, and blonde hair that lasts for up to four weeks, or up to six if used as an all-over silver. It looks like shimmer's here to stay, folks — so shine on, you crazy diamond.