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February 03, 2022 5 min read

“In time we grow older, we grow wiser, we grow smarter, and we're better. And I feel like I'm becoming more seasoned, although I don't have my salt-and-pepper hair.” – Usher

Of course, we get wiser as we grow older. But, sometimes we still make mistakes. When it comes to hair, we want to share the 3 most common mistakes that we all make that make us look older.  We’ve made all of these ourselves and maybe some of these will resonate for you, too!

Mistake 1: Coloring your hair too dark. 

As we get older our skin tone changes. Opting for a little lighter shade of haircolor can help accentuate features and make us appear less washed out.   Given the pressures on celebrities to look their best as they age, we turned to celebrity colorists and here’s some of what they had to say.

  • Go for warm tones that complement your skin tone and eye color
  • Blend your gray instead of covering it up
  • When in doubt, go temporary color to try it out

Always work with a professional colorist, don’t try to do this yourself. Colorists are trained in all of the techniques that will give you a self-esteem boost.

Looking for more specifics? Here’s what they had to say in their own words.

Nelson Chan, “colorist to the stars,” shared his top tips:  

  • Do not color your hair too dark, dark color will age you. It creates a fake halo effect on your head. Instead, always stay in lighter shades, like medium brown to blond. 
  • A good rule of thumb for highlights is less is more. Over highlighting will destroy overall dimensions and will make hair color look flat. Few sunkissed highlights are perfect for creating the fresh look.
  • This is a hard one, but do not completely cover up your gray hair. Instead, try color blending.
  • Coloring your gray weekly doesn’t work. Over-coloring hair will overlap and over deposit pigments and create unwanted dark color which will age you more. It will make gray root show up faster.

Erin Jahns of our favorite fashion site, WhoWhatWear, recently spoke with celebrity colorists. Here’s the advice that she got:

Colorist Matt Rez advised, “Warm up your all-over color using highlights and midlights. Warm, lighter wisps and pops of highlights on a neutral to a neutral-cool base will almost always read the most natural and youthful.”

Colorist Kadi Lee agrees, “If you're looking for beautiful, low-maintenance color, I suggest going warmer than you might think. Warm tones are almost always universally flattering, yet we often spend so much time fighting against them. Veer toward words like honey and gold and caramel. As we start to age, most people have some underlying warmth. Embracing your natural warmth allows for a much softer grow-out. Your natural tones will remain in your hair, and your faux color won't look as jarring when your roots start to show as your hair grows out.”

Colorist Jeremy Tardo added, ”Try looking at photos of yourself as a child. Oftentimes, the hair colors we naturally have in the earlier parts of life naturally compliment and look beautiful throughout our entire lives. Then, we can tweak the tones as needed or add a bit of light into the colors as you age to keep everything fresh and complimentary. Eye and skin tone are so important—we want to accentuate your features with hair color. If some of those features are evolving with age, the right small adjustments to your hair color can accent vitality in a way that works beautifully for you.”

All of this applies to men, too.  Shorter hair can be less forgiving when it comes to coloring, Men’sHealth had this additional advice.

“Stay away from permanent color, which can lead to visible gray roots when your hair grows out. Instead, opt for a semipermanent dye that will camouflage the gray. It rinses out as you go, so you never end up with that bare zone."

Mistake 2: Making your hair too sleek. 

Our hair over time can become thinner and flat so adding some extra umph will help give your look new life. A common mistake is to “glue” hair strands together with too much product. 

Instead, add some extra volume to your hair with a good volumizing shampoo like, ANTIDOTE Rosemary Shampoo, and finish with good styler like ANTIDOTE Burdock Root Spray Wax. Spray into hair when damp and blowdry into the roots.

“As people get older, their hair may start to lose volume and thickness. In some cases, thinning hair is linked with diet, nutrient deficiencies, or hereditary hair loss,” explains MedicalNewsToday.

According to the American Academy of Dermatologists, “How you wash your hair and the products you use can go a long way in maintaining smooth, shiny hair.”

For sure, hair care is complex and shampoo alone isn’t going to keep your hair its most youthful. MedicalNewsToday reminds of us some common sense advice to address thinning hair:

Rosemary Oil

“Some animal studies have suggested that rosemary oil may increase blood flow and could therefore improve scalp health. A healthy scalp is important for healthy hair growth. One 2015 trial compared rosemary oil with minoxidil 2%. After 6 months, the participants applying rosemary oil and those applying topical minoxidil both experienced significant hair growth.” 

Eat Healthy

“Diet plays an important role in the strength and health of a person’s hair. Proteins, fats, and certain vitamins and minerals are especially important for hair health. People may notice improvements in hair growth when they increase the amount of certain foods in their diet.

Foods that may boost hair growth include:

Eggs: These contain protein, which is essential for hair growth. They also contain biotin, a B vitamin that may boost hair growth, though research results are mixed.

Brazil nuts: These are a source of selenium, a mineral that may improve hair health.

Fatty fish: This is a good source of omega-3, which may also improve hair growth.

Vitamin D. “Vitamin D deficiencies can contribute to hair loss. Addressing this deficiency could improve thinning hair.”

Of course, consult your health care provider if you ever feel that your hair condition might signal something more serious than the natural aging process.

Mistake 3: Not keeping your hair conditioned. 

We’ve made this mistake, too! For us it’s been a combination of “too busy to apply conditioner” or “worried that conditioner is going to weigh our hair down.” Actually, quality conditioners like the ones we make at ANTIDOTE – EWG Green Rated, silicone-free – improve hair strength, flexibility, and protect it from breakage.

Don’t take our word for it. In “Tips for Healthy Hair,” the American Academy of Dermatology explains:

“Use conditioner after every shampoo. Using a conditioner can significantly improve the look of damaged or weathered hair by increasing shine, decreasing static electricity, improving strength and offering some protection from harmful UV rays." 

Concentrate conditioner on the tips of the hair. Because conditioners can make fine hair look limp, they only should be used on the tips of the hair and not on the scalp or length of the hair.”

Our favorite publication, Healthline, agrees:

“Conditioning after shampooing is an important step in keeping your hair soft, shiny, and manageable. Comb conditioner through for even distribution. Leave it in your hair for two to three minutes before rinsing out. Just like hair washing, not everyone needs to condition every time they wash their hair. Experiment to find what works best for you.”

Have you made any of these mistakes yourself? As you’ve gotten wiser with age, any other advice that you’d like to share? 

We’d love to hear from you!

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