For 6 years now I have proudly lived my life as a red head. It all started in my first semester of college due to a bad Daphne Guinness inspired dye job and the only way to save my hair was to go ginger. Just like that a niche look had been created for myself that I had never even intended.
Being translucently pale in Miami is already a rare thing to come by but being a pale red head is even rarer. Having this unique look for my location got me a lot of work and recognition but to describe it as considerate as possible the feedback was more confusing than it was reassuring.
Back in my brunette days I never heard much about my looks but with ginger locks I couldn't hear anything but it. I would always get comments about how I could be a model, should be a model, look like this girl with red hair or that girl with red hair. Sometimes people would look at me like I was an alien, others like I was a fragile porcelain doll or a painting or blah blah blah blah blah. None of these things are bad or insulting in the least bit, nor did I take it that way but it wasn't what I wanted to hear.
When I had taken the step into modeling it wasn't because I wanted validation in my appearances or to end up on the cover of a magazine or become rich and famous but because it was a way for me to express myself as a performer after ending my career in the ballet. Over time red hair had begun to feel too pretty, too precious and too idolized for reasons that were rarely deeper than superficial vanity which is why I eventually quit modeling full time to engulf myself in studies as an artist.
I had my good times with red but recently its nuances had begun to wear thin on me. I felt weighed down by the presumptions that people would make when they would see me generally entailing me to being perceived first as a fashion model and secondly as an artist. What I wanted was to be an artist first and foremost. So with a little push and shove I finally made the jump and went grey.
The psychological meaning behind the color grey is conventional, dependable and practical. It is a color of maturity and responsibility, associated of course with the grey hair of growing age. It is a stable base from which the new and positive can come. Going grey for me has felt like a form of ascension; a complete dedication through mind, body and soul to living every day as a work of art. Now with grey hair this is exemplified and solidified for all the world to know without a word having to be said.
Already in just my few weeks experience thus far with grey locks I have noticed a massive shift in the way that people look at me. They don't understand what they are looking at and I appreciate the challenge.
So for all of you out there, young or old, that see going grey as a sign of decay I hope that you reconsider your warped perspectives. Grey is beautiful. Grey is wisdom, maturity and experience. Perhaps most importantly of all grey is a revered elegance that is not gained through a Chanel No 5 perfume or a Louis Vuitton handbag. Grey earns its elegance. It fights for it, dies for it, and is not afraid to show it's seared scars. Through all of that grey is one of the most passionate, powerful and honest colors that I have ever understood. Proudly I enter into this new stage of ascension.