The passage of time shouldn't make you take less pride in your appearance. In fact, as you become surer of your self and style, you care less about convention and lean into what you like. And in the past few months, more and more funky fortysomethings have been liking ash-pink locks. Here are a few reasons why:
While style shouldn't come with an age limit, hair volume unfortunately does. Our strands often get sparser and limper, meaning that longer 'dos can appear to drag down your face and age you prematurely. That's why stylists and customers tend to prefer shorter crops for added bounce and personality.
What can amp up that attitude still further? Funky ashy colours like this shade of pink highlights, which also add hair volume and dimension, thanks to the interplays of light and dark. Who says short has to be safe?
Is it conformist and conventional? No. Is it siren-loud? No. This shade is complex and cool, and demonstrates to the world that you're not afraid to inhabit who you are and what you like. A funky, personality-charged 'do like this could lend you extra confidence to be unapologetically you.
Singaporeans boast a diverse collection of facial features, but with masks occluding half of them, we can all look more or less the same. WIth this hair hue in a sea of dark Asian locks, you'll never have to worry how you're going to challenge conformity. Ash-pink is called a statement shade for a reason!
The problem with brighter colours is that they can fade into ghastly green or blaring brass pretty quick. This shade of pink though has been designed to stay stylish through its lightening incarnations, eventually turning to a cool ashy blonde, thus giving you numerous lush looks for the price of one.
If people in their first flush of youth constantly take risks, surely those of us further along should make the most of our residual vivacity and look however the heck we want. If you've always craved convention-defying colour, go ahead and seize the day.
Of course, you don't have to take it from us - Let one of our favourite funky forty-somethings tell you why she took a bash at ashy pink.
Hi, I'm Agent PK. While you might not recognise my face, there's a good chance you'll find my voice familiar. Previously a radio deejay, I've continued voicing ads and cartoons along with performing onstage, and am also Singapore's only voice teacher accredited with the Fitzmaurice Institute.
I've always loved playing around with my 'dos, and have tried everything from auntie perms to bleaching the heck out of my tresses. I won't lie, I've sometimes looked at some of my old photos and wondered, 'What on earth was I thinking?' But I'm glad I got to give some awesome looks a good go.
Of course, extensive hair experimentation comes with consequences, and I'm now left with a faded, dry lob. I was still itching for a new look - was it possible under the circumstances? It was time to call my favourite hair guru.
In the hazy, distant past, I used to follow my mum to neighbourhood salons. But ever since meeting Leong from The Beauty Emporium by The Urban Aesthetics who transformed my tresses, I have stayed true to the man, and he's never let me down.
I contacted him to tell him that I wanted to change up my hair, but that it was properly damaged and might require the ends to be cut off. I gave him carte blanche to do whatever he thought best. Then I booked my appointment, and consigned my 'do to his expert hands.
The Beauty Emporium is reassuringly thorough about customer safety and comfort. After the standard temperature check, I was helped into a salon cape to protect my outift. Then I removed my mask very briefly to allow Leong to observe my current face shape (Covid-19 has caused volatile fluctuations) and plan my shiny new 'do.
I felt pretty safe, since The Beauty Emporium by The Urban Aesthetics' new location boasts private rooms which, space permitting, the warm stylists are always happy to put you in.
Since I already told Leong what I hoped to achieve, the onsite consultation process was short and sweet. He described how he would give me a funky cut to remove the dead hair ends and add major pizzazz. He also wanted to give me a brand new hair colour - Ash Pink! Again confident about Leong's expert eye and dextrous hands, I told the master to begin whenever he was ready.
And so we did! We started with a wash so that Leong could do a wet cut on my hair to give me one of those extreme-precision 'dos he became an industry name for. He towel-dried my hair so it wasn't dripping, then combed and parted it into numerous small sections.
And so the cutting commenced.
He took a good length off my locks because it was even more damaged than I thought, but reassured me that I would love his planned departure from my standard shoulder-length.
It was sad to see, I won't lie. But my follicular condition meant it was time to say goodbye to those hair ends, and I was looking forward to a refresh.
By the time Leong had sculpted the base shape with his scissors, my hair had more or less dried from the wash. In this drier state, Leong was able to make further refinements.
Observe his cutting technique, targeting miniscule sections at a time for true exactitude.
The result: An artistic, angled cut that was distinctly me.
I loved the sleek silhouette of my coiff, transforming along different parts of my head.
It was time to accent with colours! Now that my hair was nice and short, minimal chemicals could be used for maximum efficiency, Leong mixed up a bowl of bleach, along with some other beautifying concoctions.
He brushed the bleach onto my locks, once again in small, precise, sections; and using a piece of aluminum foil to separate the bleached portions from the unbleached ones.
Each section was so fine to ensure even bleaching and perfectly blended highlights, meaning the process had to be repeated countless times. I assure you, not every stylist would take such uncompromising pains for their clients.
Then Leong proceeded to separate the foil-wrapped sections with pieces of cotton wool, thus preventing chemicals coming into direct contact with my scalp.
This is what the highlighting process looks like when have a supremely detail-oriented stylist:
After 45 minutes of looking like a villainess from an '80s sci-fi movie, I was finally brought to the washing bay. Leong gently removed the foils only under running water, which prevents tugging trauma on your hair.
He then gave me a thorough rinse to remove any remaining chemicals...
...before using purple shampoo to eradicate the yellow tones from my freshly bleached strands.
At this point, a leisurely scalp scrub was thrown in as part of the wash. Lovely!
And at last, it was time to colour me pink.
My crowning glory was coated generously in the lush dye.
With the new shortness of my bob, complete coating was achieved in record time.
And for 30 minutes, I let the pink sink in.
Then, it was time for another wash and scalp massage, before my newly pink tresses and I were returned to the salon chair.
After toweling most of the moisture from my locks, Leong deployed one of his state-of-the-art hair-dryers.
This protective styling tool removed any remaining wetness, while helping Leong to shape my coiff using a round brush.
He then once again flourished his scissors to make finishing adjustments, and perfect my 'do from every angle.
I think he succeeded. Ready for the reveal?
My new hair has got me feeling fierce!
Whether from the front, sides or back, I adore the precise structure and the chic, on fleek shade.
This 'do definitely had me feeling brand new.
The hair process was flawless, as it always is with Leong. And in the unpredictablity of the present, gettting a confident colour paired with a statement irregular precision cut gave me a much-needed boost. I'm looking forward to having this style take me through the toughness of 2021 and beyond...or at least until I decide to switch things up again.