Style

Do or Don’t: Grey Hair

So. The other day, I was in the bathroom, brushing my teeth and minding my own business, when I randomly glanced at the top of my head and saw ALL THE GREY HAIRS. Where did they come from?! I’ve noticed the odd silver hair now and again, but suddenly, out of nowhere, they’re coming up in droves.

WHAT IS THE PLAN, LADIES?

Should we pluck? The old wives tale says, “If you pluck a grey hair, three more come to its funeral.” Experts say that’s not true, but plucking is tricky (they’re wiry little suckers!) and once you have a certain number of greys, it’s too many to handle.

Should we dye? Salons can get expensive, so do you know any boxed dyes out there that really work? I would say embrace the greys, but… I don’t want to. :)

For inspiration, here’s Sarah Harris, the fashion features director at British Vogue…
And the lovely Joyce from Advanced Style and her animal friends…
Have you started noticing greys? What do you do? Are you dyeing or embracing? Any tips would be greatly appreciated!

P.S. My beauty routine, and 16 hair tutorials.

(Sarah Harris photos by The Sartorialist and Into the Gloss)

  1. Anonymous says...

    Help! My long brown hair has a grey streak and some grey–it’s still dark brown but is getting a little brassy/orange at the ends. All the articles about grey hair shampoo emphasize grey/blond. I’m wondering what shampoo might de-brass my ends without overall lightening, and generally when to consider making a “silver” shampoo part of the rotation.

  2. Hi!
    I have some questions. I have been dyeing my hair for 30+ years. I’m ready to embrace/rock my grey hair. I’m 100%..
    Anyway, I have reddish/brown in hair.. Length is middle back. Not cutting hair. How to grow my color out without the dreaded demarcation mark. All replies would be appreciated.

    Thanks!

    • Cathy Villa says...

      I realize this question is 3 months old and you probably found and answer already, but in case any one else has the same question. Go the hairdresser an have them lift your color and you can do grey/silver highlights to make the incoming grey blend or you can just dye the entire head. Fortunately grey/silver is actually a popular color to dye hair right now. the color obviously won’t be exact, but it will blend and hide the obvious demarcation lines. Here are a couple of examples. the second or 5th one down would do great http://www.haircutweb.com/2016/04/amazing-greysilver-highlights.html or full grey http://redunionsalon.com/should-you-dye-your-hair-gray/ or you could even do an ombre with grey/silver on top and color on bottom. http://www.hairstylesdesign.com/gallery/5729 Whatever you choose it makes a style and a choice rather than just something “happening” that looks bad.

  3. Oh I know! I’m getting greys and sometimes when I part my hair a certain way they really stand out. Frankly it scared me the first time I noticed more than let’s say 4-5. I’m getting over it though because someone who has totally inspired me to go with the flow is this friken gorgeous girl with incredible style that I see around town with lots of silvery grey strands running through her brown hair. Another thing is that it’s sooo true that with everyone confidence is BEAUTY:) I think she’s a natural dye artist. Go figure.

    Any who I’m going to take DOLORES O’D FANNING’s advice and opinion. She sounds like a wise, happy, and beautiful woman.

  4. Paula R says...

    The trick my stylist used in helping me to grow out my highlights was to cut longer really thin layers so that the highlights are diminished slightly with each cut. The layers were pretty much just enough to “thin” the highlights. This reduced the contrast between the natural color growing out and the highlights. Even as we were getting close to eliminating all the lighter color, it took on a subtle but interesting look with just the ends having a lighter golden color. Seemed like a brilliant technique to me!

  5. dolores O'D Fanning says...

    allowed the grey to shine through in my 30’s and now as I approach 70’s I realize how amazing the decision was! In 30’s had a young face with grey and now that the face has been aging the grey has gotten even more comfortable. Let nature shine through and embrace life; the color of your hair matters not – your health, your love of life are all that matters. Shine on through the changes naturally!

    • Jan Stew says...

      I am in my 30s and I have greys mainly at the front of my hair and I am embracing them. Sometimes I feel that I am showing up those who are older than me and who cover theirs. I am not inclined to cover them. I just want to be natural.

  6. megan says...

    I started going grey in my early twenties and had been dying it light blond, my original color, ever since. I would have NEVER considered going gray, until one day at 36 I accidentally went almost 3 months without dying it. When I finally got in to get it dyed, it was back to blonde but it suddenly felt like it wasn’t me anymore. I knew it was time to embrace the gray and I’ve never looked back. It’s pretty long, so after almost 2 years I’m about 2/3 of the way there! Once I started growing it out my beloved dad told me that he loved women with gray hair…. he said it made them look confident and beautiful. I know I look older but I feel stronger and more myself too. And I feel just as beautiful, especially remembering my sweet dad thought so.

  7. Debra says...

    I’m in my late 50s and have been grey since my late 20s. I have never colored my hair (except for one disastrous episode that turned all my grey purple!!) and I never plan to. Yes, people tell me that I would look younger if I had darker/lighter/brighter/frosted/streaked/chunked/or just plain different hair. Do I care? No. I’m an intelligent, college-educated, college librarian. I like who I am and how I look, grey and all. I’ve been asked if my husband doesn’t mind that my hair is grey. Mine turned grey; his turned loose. So, no, he doesn’t mind. And besides, my hair identifies me as a member of my family. People look at me and say, “I know you are one of the XXXXX clan just by that hair. ” Grey hair rules!!

  8. Michele says...

    i have decided for now to embrace the greys
    My hair is light brown so they are not crazy noticeable from a distance- kind of liberating to not get it colored at the salon every 6-8 weeks
    Who knows what the fall will bring I may go back to highlights but for now I feel free :)

  9. Foxie says...

    I have been home dying my hair for 30+ years. I am natural auburn (Irish roots) but have had a clump of grey in the crown since around 16. Plucking them out does not breed 3 new ones :)
    My hair also dulls a lot in winter so I liven it up with a brighter tone. The best home dye I have used is Herbal Essence, the red’s (45 i think?), but all the herbal essence one’s I used were really nice to my hair. They don’t sell that in the UK anymore, so I go with Live colour, real red. I have had pretty much every colour the other side of blonde from brown to black to bright pink and blue! I always get compliments on the condition of my hair from hairdressers, having no break from dying and I put my hair through some real stress.
    I have no choice but dye my hair these days, I wish i could even remember and embrace the colour i used to have.

  10. Janis says...

    I embrace it.
    I got some silver when i was in my thirtys. But when i had chemo for breast cancer. I had my hair falling out . When it came back(which means your body healthy) silver and black under. I have been 12years cancer free. I dont have the $ for dyeing it to black. So i just let my hair be. I wash and use coconut oil for mosture and sunblock for sun. So enjoy life and be greatful you have hair.
    Or if no hair(hats are cute). be greatful you have your health. enjoy ladies/men

    • dolores O'D Fanning says...

      as a survivor as well (15 yrs) I applaud your sentiments and agree wholeheartedly. Good health is all that matters and gray has a beauty of its own, just like every other color. It is the media who brainwashes the masses. To thine own self be true….the journey hopefully is a long one through many changes, hair color is just one of many, if we are blessed to have the years. Stay healthy and live strong….

  11. Julie says...

    I resisted coloring my hair for a very long time. I have dark hair so the greys were becoming more and more noticeable around my temples. I hate the ammonia smell of conventional hair dyes, so I got a bottle of Naturtint from Whole Foods picking a color that was a touch lighter than my natural hair color. Because I was just touching up the roots, I only used half of the dye that came in the box (i.e. before mixing the two parts, I stored half of the base in another container for future use, and washed out the applicator bottle for re-use in the future/to store the un-mixed/unused portion on the next application). Since I was worried about getting dye all over our bathroom, I colored my hair the day I was scheduled to go into the salon for a wash and cut. About and hour and half before my appointment, I applied the dye. With Naturtint, they recommend you leave it in at least an hour for stubborn greys. Then I went to my salon appointment with my hair saturated with dye and brought the little packets of shampoo and condition that comes in the Naturtint box. At the salon, I explained I had natural hair dye in my hair, and they donned latex gloves and washed out my hair with the shampoo and condition packets; no big deal. The shampoo and conditioner smell great. The color looks awesome and only cost me $7 (for half the dye in the box) on top of my cut and wash.

  12. I am six weeks out from my last color. I was just going to call my stylist to book my appointment when I had this thought “why”? I’ve never thought about NOT coloring my gray but for some reason, today, I wanted to be true to myself. I didn’t call. I’m going silver. I’m going to be my authentic self. Yay!

    • Paula R says...

      At age 60 I had a ‘why’ moment a few years back after years of expensive salon highlights. When I would mention it to my hairdresser at the time there was a distinct lack of enthusiasm. When I moved to another state and found a new hair dresser (after several attempts) I was astounded when she gave her whole hearted approval and told me she could help me through the transition. A year later I am back to my original color – darker brown than I remember and just a dusting of gray. I’m so happy to be free of the chemicals, time and money spent, and not getting locked in to coloring later because it’s so much harder when you have all gray growing in. Gray can be beautiful with some care and natural is healthier. I applaud your decision!

    • Linda Kimbell says...

      I too want to refrain from calling my hairstylist. I have always been vain, especially when I was young. Now I am 66 and sad to have lost my youthful face. Although no one ever says I look my age. Although I know I am blessed with good genes, I really want to stop coloring my hair every 6-8 weeks. My salon’s prices are ridiculous. I think I will go to a wig shop, try on gray wigs and hopefully get over myself of trying to stay younger looking.