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Image: Kelly Osbourne; Daphne Guinness
AP file; Getty Images file
E! host and reality-TV star Kelly Osbourne (left) and socialite Daphne Guinness (right) are two recent personalities who have opted for the granny chic hair color.
By
TODAY contributor
updated 2/22/2012 10:48:37 AM ET 2012-02-22T15:48:37

Blondes may have more fun, but lately gray hair has been getting all the attention in fashion circles, from runways in Paris to red carpets in Los Angeles. And while silver foxes such as Anderson Cooper have long been en vogue, this new, young new breed of silver vixens is proving that going gray is anything but granny.

The silver-haired trend can be traced all the way back to 2006, when a then 24-year-old Kirsten Dunst wore a series of towering powdered gray wigs in Sofia Coppola’s "Marie Antoinette."

“I feel like that whole feeling of beautiful fanciness and very decorative Marie Antoinette hair, that sort of went into everyone’s consciousness,” Jean Godfrey June, beauty director of Lucky magazine, told TODAY.com.

What your favorite pop stars might wear next season

But if "Marie Antoinette"re-introduced women to the idea of powdery gray strands, it was fashion icon and socialite Daphne Guinness who took the concept from the silver screen to silver reality. Guinness debuted her silver-streaked hair at Paris Fashion Week in fall of 2009, looking every bit like Cruella de Vil, albeit a younger, sexier, version.

“Daphne Guinness, her gray was so shocking, and she’s so shocking and so cool, it made other people think about doing it. Every celebrity on earth has tried pink streaks or blue, so maybe silver is next.”

Slideshow: Silver foxes (on this page)

Guinness has by now abandoned her silver-streaked black hair for silver hair with black streaks, and in her wake, dozens of starlets and trend-setters have followed her example and dyed their blond, brunette, and black hair a resplendent sterling. It-girls such as Kate Moss, Pixie Geldof, Pink, Lady Gaga, and even a then 13-year-old Tavi Gevinson have all dared to go gray long before their hair follicles turned that way naturally.

Fashion designers like Gareth Pugh, Karl Lagerfeld, and Jean Paul Gaultier have all sent models down the runway sporting pale-gray tresses. Most recently, 27 year-old Kelly Osbourne debuted lavender-gray locks at the People’s Choice Awards in January (a look she’d already played with in 2010).

Image: -
Dominique Faget  /  AFP - Getty Images
Grey-haired models walk the runway at Spanish designer Maria Barros' Autumn/Winter 2012 presentation during Madrid Fashion Week on Feb. 4.

“It’s something I’ve wanted to do my whole life,” Osbourne revealed on "The Talk" earlier this month. “I’ve always wanted to be young and have gray hair.”

Age-defying style secrets from fearless 'glam-mas'

Being young, or at least still looking passably young, seems to be the key factor in pulling off the look, which openly flouts one of the last taboos of the fashion world. While most older women are still running for hair dye the second a gray hair sprouts, younger women are using the look to provide a heightened contrast to their youth and beauty.

London calling: Theatrics on the Fashion Week runway

“There’s an aspect to it that’s sort of like the beauty equivalent of a Marni sack dress. I’m so gorgeous, I have such beautiful skin, and am young, and you’re going to still want me even though I have gray hair,” says June.

For women who want to try the look themselves, June has one suggestion.

“Beautiful skin is the key. Then, you can dye your hair whatever you like, including the most taboo.”

© 2013 NBCNews.com  Reprints

Photos: Kooky fashion on the runway

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  1. Bold fashion on the runway

    Designers at New York Fashion Week Fall 2012 sent down an array of unique, odd, and downright bizarre styles.

    Crystal blue persuasion
    A model presents a crystal-studded creation at the The Blonds Fall 2012 collection on Feb. 15. (Eduardo Munoz / Reuters) Back to slideshow navigation
  2. Helmet hair

    A model shows off a sparkly creation at the The Blonds Fall 2012 fashion show on Feb. 15. (Fernanda Calfat / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  3. Hit or myth?

    The Jeremy Scott Fall 2012 fashion show on Feb. 15 showed some love for beloved mythical creatures. (Slaven Vlasic / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  4. Meltdown

    A groovy creation is presenetd at the Jeremy Scott Fall 2012 fashion show on Feb. 15. (Slaven Vlasic / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  5. Rainbow bright

    Did Cousin Itt finally embrace color? A model walks the runway at the Jeremy Scott Fall 2012 fashion show on Feb. 15. (Slaven Vlasic / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  6. Eat my shorts!

    "The Simpsons" are immortalized in the Jeremy Scott Fall 2012 fashion show on Feb. 15. (Slaven Vlasic / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  7. Give it a swirl

    A swirly dress is presented at the threeASFOUR Fall 2012 fashion show on Feb. 15. (Chelsea Lauren / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  8. Wholehearted

    Designers at New York Fashion Week Fall 2012 sent down an array of unique, odd, and downright bizarre styles.

    Left: A model displays a less than subtle style at the Indashio Fall 2012 fashion show on Feb. 14. (Arun Nevader / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  9. Short shrift

    A suit got sawed off at the Vera Wang Fall 2012 collection on Feb. 14. (Richard Drew / AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  10. See-through view

    The Vera Wang Fall 2012 collection is modeled during Fashion Week on Feb. 14. (Richard Drew / AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  11. Sized up

    Move over, Olsen twins: A model shows off a shabby chic ensemble at the Marc Jacobs Fall 2012 fashion show on Feb. 13. (Victor Virgile / Getty Images Contributor) Back to slideshow navigation
  12. You're a good man, Charlie Brown

    The beloved "Peanuts" character always has a place in the fashion world, or more specifically, in the Michael Bastian Fall 2012 presentation on Feb. 13. (Cindy Ord / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  13. Clocking in

    It only looks like it works. A model holds a timely accessory at the Diane Von Furstenberg Fall 2012 fashion show on Feb. 12. (Victor Virgile / Getty Images Contributor) Back to slideshow navigation
  14. Play dead

    The Thom Browne Fall 2012 collection on Feb. 13 featured models who "died for fashion," complete with toy coffins. Uplifting! (Andrew Burton / AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  15. How to train your dragon?

    Wearing shrouds, the "dead" models at Thom Browne's Fall 2012 conceptual show wore daring ensembles, including a dragon tail-inspired gown. () Back to slideshow navigation
  16. Pouched up

    The Thom Browne Fall 2012 collection featured bold shapes and corpse-inspired makeup. (Andrew Burton / AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  17. Stripe the right note

    One model was seeing stripes at the Emilio Cavallini Fall 2012 Presentation on Feb. 13. (Astrid Stawiarz / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  18. Posh pilgrim

    It was a Thanksgiving feast on the Giulietta Fall 2012 fashion show on Feb. 12. (Dario Cantatore / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  19. Shouldering through the crowd

    A model gives new meaning to shoulder pads at the Geoffrey Mac Fall 2012 fashion show on Feb. 12. (Neilson Barnard / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  20. Putting the finger on

    Are those shoes ... flipping the bird? A model gets a rude awakening from her footwear at the Miguel Adrover Fall 2012 fashion show on Feb. 11. (Mike Coppola / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  21. Claws-trophobia

    A cat lady walks the runway at the Miguel Adrover Fall 2012 fashion show on Feb. 11. (Mike Coppola / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  22. Tree's company

    It's a jungle out there on the the Miguel Adrover Fall 2012 fashion show, shown on Feb. 11. (Mike Coppola / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  23. Thigh jinks

    Supermodel Gisele Bundchen overdoses on leather at the Alexander Wang show on Feb. 11. (Charles Sykes / AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  24. Net profit

    A model walks the runway at the Alexander Wang Fall 2012 fashion show on Feb. 11. (Peter Michael Dills / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  25. All furs

    Fur gets the bikini treatment at the VPL By Victoria Barlett Fall 2012 fashion show on Feb. 11. (Dario Cantatore / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  26. More arm than good?

    The Jason Wu Fall 2012 collection, shown on Feb. 10, features a furry, fun creation. (Jason Decrow / AP) Back to slideshow navigation
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  1. Image: A model presents a creation at the The Blonds Fall/Winter 2012 collection during New York Fashion Week
    Eduardo Munoz / Reuters
    Above: Slideshow (26) Kooky fashion on the runway
  2. US actor George Clooney poses before the
    Damien Meyer / AFP - Getty Images
    Slideshow (25) Silver foxes

Video: 3 hot style trends from Fashion Week

  1. Closed captioning of: 3 hot style trends from Fashion Week

    >>> back at 8:21, this morning on today's style. the highlights and trends from fashion week here in new york. this year, elegance and a nod to sports like things dominated the runway. here with details is june amber, a celebrity and fashion stylist . you're right on trend, i say pastels, but you say, sorbet. what's the big theme of fashion week?

    >> it's all about glamour. it was glamorous, you saw alligator, faux croc, faux fur , lots of real fur. fall is so strong for fashion .

    >> just so everyone understands, we're thinking about what we're going to wear about spring. but fashion week is previewing for fall look, right?

    >> it's tough to watch because you want it right away.

    >> let's talk about some of the highlights. jason wu , now a household name . he's got a line for target. how did he do this week?

    >> he went back to his roots. he did this whole chinese ming dynasty thing, it was fantastic. there was lots of textures, lots of brocades, it was super-rich. a military influence, a lot of structure. but it was definitely different from the first time. kind of getting in touch with his roots again.

    >> beautiful stuff. what about victoria beckham ? we know her as posh spice , but she's sort of become a design anywhere her own right.

    >> she was interesting, she was very structured and sporty. you saw her in the collection so much. had this fitted, very structured piece.

    >> kind of severe.

    >> but then she got a little sporty, which was nice, you could see her husband playing a part in it. flat motorcycle boots. the editors loved it.

    >> a lot of times celebrities start fashion lines and they don't always take off. hers certainly have. another couple who have done well, mary kate and ashley with the row?

    >> object lens and decadence, they showed up at the carlyle for tea and crumpets, it was like chic urbanity, it was just stunning, a lot of workable pieces. beautiful colors, the tones are neutral. a lot of structure as well again. classic and timeless, the girls are making a statement that they're designers that really want to be taken seriously.

    >> they kind of had a slow start . they didn't try to burst on to the scene. they built support over a few seasons?

    >> they have an amazing empire. they have a high end , low end . all the way down to jcpenney. these girls are doing a lot.

    >> another new name on the horizon, christian siriano . he's becoming quite a designer to be reckoned with. he was on " project runway ."

    >> the pieces were so wearable. he had beautiful long, flowy gowns, structure, but they were wearable. like the faux cropped jackets and trench coat he did was genius. and he had a great celebrity turn-out at his fashion show as well.

    >> diane von furstenberg . doing beautiful, bright colors.

    >> if you're looking for bold, she's the person to go to. she's the daring diva. the woman who wants to stand out in the crowd. all the pieces were duly very timeless. this he were great for day into night . i loved her collection the most, it was genius.

    >> speaking of fabulous genius. anna wintour , editor in chief for "vogue," she always turns out looking fabulous and having someone interesting on her arm.

    >> senator gilda brant. it was interesting, a little political gravitas. i have to say.

    >> unusual for fashion week to bring a politician.

    >> i have to tell you with the state of the economy, fashion is still definitely driving lots of businesses. and making billions of dollars. so senator wanted to show her support.

    >> let's talk about the trends we'll see. metallics, tell us about this look here.

    >> i love me dalices, to me it's the n metallics, it looks like sequin, it's h & m , $29. under $50 to look like you can go out to a nightclub or an expensive evening event.

    >> another trend i can't believe is coming back from the '80s, neon, really?

    >> i love the neon piece. it's punctuation, it's effortless, think about all your neutral pieces you may have. you want to add a pop effortlessly? add a neon accessory.

    >> so you don't do head to toe in neon. a little goes a long way. and the kimono look. you're calling it the new cardigan?

    >> you have no pressure when you wear it. it travels well. even when i'm dropping the kids off to school, i throw on a kimono and it makes my sweats look super-chic.

    >> thanks so much.

    >>> just ahead, donald trump talks about the " celebrity apprentice " and politics, too.

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