slow fade

is this the new ombre?

by liza darwin

About three years ago, I embarked upon my first NYLON hair experiment. It was about the time where ombre was becoming popular, and I wanted to channel Jessica Biel with two-toned strands. 

Since then, though, ombre has been everywhere, from the heads of NYLON favorites like Alexa Chung, Drew Barrymore, and Lily Aldridge, to runway shows like Prada and Victoria's Secret, to girls all over the world. And considering the fact that the fad has been proclaimed "over" and "back again" about a million times since it first began, this dark-to-light look just might be the trend that'll never die. But while ombre can still work for summer (it just fits better on sunkissed hair), what about wintertime? This is where sombre comes in. 

Think of L'Oreal Professionnel's latest color technique as a cold-weather alternative to ombre hair. The general idea is the same--a gradual fade, from the roots all the way to the ends--but this time it's much softer. Rather than an extreme two-toned look (almost like you split your hair length in half), sombre weaves golden, icy brown, or silvery blonde highlights into your mane for an effortless, easy gradation. 

For its new campaign the company recruited cool girls like British DJ Mary Charteris, American model Langley Fox Hemingway, and French actress Ella Waldman to show off the effect. I tried it too, this weekend at New York's Warren Tricomi Salon. And yeah, I'm obsessed...mostly because it's so subtle. It's not the type of look that will cause all of your friends to react--more like, they'll notice a difference when you tell them.

But considering keeping things looking natural is the name of the game here, that's exactly the point. You hair looks like "you"-- but with color that's warmer, richer, and definitely more flattering. It's the hair color trend that you didn't know you needed, and now that I've tried it, with L'Oreal Professionnel INOA, I don't really want to go back. Click here to see a list of the salons that offer the service-- but if there's not one where you live, Warren Tricomi stylist Jaclyn Curti suggests asking for a subtle ombre, using any type of hair lightener to get the same effect. 

Is sombre going to replace ombre next year? Click the gallery and let us know if you're into it.