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If you had asked me last year if I would be sharing my journey to let my natural gray grow out, I would have never believed you. But now that it’s done, I’ll never go back and here’s my “8 Reasons to Go Gray”!
Growing up in the 70’s, my sister and I (she was brunette, I was the blonde) switched up our hair colors as teenagers many times. I’ll date myself here by stating that we “pulled through the cap” and “streaked” our hair. What an archaic method! Point being that playing around with hair color was permitted in my family, so it wasn’t a big deal and actually something we looked forward to doing and comparing.
By my twenties, my hair had lost that youthful blonde and was pretty much a dark ( unattractive ) blonde naturally. By then, “foiling” the hair was in, and that’s what I did, for many years. I simply felt that I looked better as a light blonde. But as the gray seeped in more steadily over the years, “foiling” or any partial color just wasn’t cutting it. More and more of my hair had to be colored to cover the gray.
By 45 or so, I was almost completely gray. Foiling was pretty far back in the rear view mirror, as I had been coloring my hair all over for quite a few years…ok a couple of decades. Usually I did it myself at home, I’m just too cheap (and experienced) to let someone else color my hair when I can could do it for $7.
Sometimes I would discuss going gray with my hairdresser, but she would say to me “You have young children! You can’t do that! People will think you’re their grandmother!”
Truth was….they already did.
I had my last biological baby at almost 42 years old. We have a large family with a hefty spread of ages with the children. And by now, the hair color just wasn’t staying the way it had it my younger years. Perhaps it was being post-menopausal combined with my farmish lifestyle that allows me to be outside every day, but whatever it was, my hair was taking on a different color within a couple weeks of dyeing.
I got to the point that I never really felt that my hair color looked good, except for that few days after initial color. And then there’s the roots. My coloring habit was starting to feel like a really bad relationship of sorts. It drew me in, but then was quick to beat me up over the roots and brassy colors. I was ready for a change.
My hair was also starting to thin quite a bit, an issue that I’ve NEVER had…and this scared me, frankly. How much damage had I done to my scalp after all these years of color?
Ok, I’m mid-50’s now…there, I said it. Maybe I could work with the gray, somehow. After spending some time on Pinterest looking at models with gorgeous gray locks, I began to wonder if maybe it was time for me to embrace this gray hair of mine. There are some really good blogs out there about going gray, even ladies much younger than me! This one in particular helped me to deal with the voices inside that told me I was “letting myself go“, and that being “authentic” was freedom.
Funny, I am all about authenticity in other areas of life, but my hair was a blind spot.
Finally, there is NOTHING sustainable about hair color! Nothing.
So, if you’re tired of the color rat-race, here’s a few more reasons to consider going gray
It’s in Style
Look at any Pinterest feed and you’re bound to see gray hair show up on a young model! I’m not one to chase current trends, but hey, maybe it’s time to roll with it. Check out my “Gray is the New Blonde” Pinterest board!
Hair dye is like a Bad Relationship
Again, I had to ask myself, “From who or what else in this world would you put up with this kind of abuse?” No one! Color was expensive, time-consuming, harsh to my ego and damaging to my scalp.
It takes up Valuable Brain Cells
What I mean here is that I must have checked my roots a dozen times a day to see if they were showing. Every time I fix my hair, the goal is to minimize roots. Color kept a certain part of my brain occupied constantly, but NOW, it’s amazing! I almost NEVER look at my hair after I’ve styled it for the day. It’s kind of crazy, I never realized this until I wasn’t doing it anymore. I have better things to think about!
It’s Just Bad for You
Not only is it bad for your roots and scalp, but think about what kind of damage inhaling all the fumes could be doing!
It can thin your future hair growth
I’ll tell you something, THIS really scared me! I’m so glad it seems to be reversing for me.
The only thing I need to think about with my hair is to just maintain a good cut – how freeing!
There are Lots of Ways to Transition
Once again, Pinterest has tons of pix and ideas about how to make the transition. I went with the super short haircut to get there faster!
Your gray isn’t going to be the same as anyone else’s, giving you a fabulous unique look! I’ll admit that I’m still adjusting, but I don’t think I’m going back to the bottle!