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40 Expert Tips to Go Gray in Style

Transition slowly

Developing gray hair doesn’t happen overnight, even though it feels like it sprung up on you. So instead of waiting for full-blow gray hair to catch up with you, you can start by embracing those silver strands in your hair.

Experts recommend that you dye hair roots with an ammonia-free color dye to cover a more significant part of gray hair. This way, you can grow your hair before showing off your new look to the world.

Blue shampoo

Gray hair is susceptible to yellowing, but you can prevent it using a blue-colored shampoo to wash your hair two times a month. If you’re not ready for that full-blow Granny look, you can use violet products to combat the brassy tones of graying hair.

There are multiple versions of violet products and blue shampoo. Make sure you choose products that are right for your hair.

Compliment your color

Once you start graying, you’ll discover that you can’t wear all the colors in your closet. Now, you have to choose mostly colors that compliment your silver lines and accentuate your beauty.

Aging doesn’t mean being less attractive. While fashion is dynamic, gray-haired women would be better off with charcoal and silver clothing. It makes your gray hair sharp and striking to the eye.

Embrace the blush

As you transition to the gray phase, your makeup routine needs some tweaks too. Muted tones can sink your complexion, while blush easily creates a warm and bright face. According to makeup artist Yvette Gonzalez, grey-haired women should choose shades of apricot, peach, and rose. They should also avoid tawny and beige colors.

Take the chop

Gray hair takes many years to cover your scalp fully, and you get a low-cut in case you feel awkward about the transformation. Birnur Aral, director of the Good Housekeeping Institute’s Health, Beauty and Environmental Sciences Lab, suggests that aging women should let their gray hair grow for about two inches before getting a pixie cut. That way, silver threads can spring out from all parts of your scalp.

Patience, Patience

If you let nature take its course, remember that the process will take a while. Colorist Nikki Ferrara expressed her views on Good Housekeeping by saying, ‘Most people won’t have the patience to grow gray hair, so they just color their hair again.’

It’s gratifying when you stick it out and watch the hairs on your hair go from silver to entirely gray. You can also see a colorist several times yearly to record progress highlights.

Put in some extra effort

It’ll be harder to rock gray hair without consistent grooming and care. Aral shared her personal experience with silver strands to Good Housekeeping.

She noted that the extra effort she put in to groom and care for her graying hair paid off. ‘I feel with gray hair I need to have my hair styled – blown out, straightened, or curled – and have makeup on.’ Unless I’d look older than my usual self.

Choose your shade of gray

Before you go gray, you should decide on your ideal shade of gray. To keep an overall silver look, mix your salt-and-pepper roots or add chic highlights to enhance your natural hair tones.

Whatever you decide, discuss it with a colorist so they can provide you with steps to achieve your desired gray shade.

Wash regularly

Gray hair contains less pigment, so it’s prone to looking dull when unkempt. External factors like UV light and pollutants can dim that silver shine, but you can prevent this from dulling your hair. Prevention experts suggest that you wash your hair locks every day with products rich in antioxidants.

Consult a stylist first

There’s no harm in seeking help when you’re confused; in fact, you should seek expert advice from stylists once you decide to go gray. Stylists can diagnose what kind of cuts and shades of gray that suit perfectly your face and skin tone.

They can also recommend helpful hair products and help you set expectations to aid your transition journey.

Stay away from box dyes

Going gray isn’t just a long process; it also costs money. Your gray hair requires delicate and specific treatment products. While it’s tempting to opt for a box dye instead of the actual thing, experts do not recommend them.

Coloring kits purchased at local stores contain reactive chemicals that can strip your hair and send you back to the salon after use.

Frequent trims

Regardless of your hairstyle, you should trim your gray hair regularly. Yvette Gonzalez, a stylist at New York City’s Sahag Workshop, told Prevention that ‘Gray hair can start to appear unruly if it’s not trimmed regularly enough.’

Trim your hair every six weeks or two months with the help of a stylist. Ensure your stylist doesn’t use a razor because it can leave fray ends and make your hair look unkempt.

Stick to contemporary cuts

Most people with gray hair hesitate because they’re worried about looking old in gray haircuts. You can select modern hairstyles for your hair, so you look advanced and youthful simultaneously.

Actress Jamie Lee Curtis told Maire Claire in 2017 that her stylist keeps her cut edgy and contemporary – otherwise, she could go Bea Arthur pretty fast. You can stay young and fresh by choosing simple contemporary haircuts.

Maintain moisture

Gray hair struggles to retain moisture and can feel too dry after a while. An essential part of your gray hair routine is keeping your hair hydrated. You can purchase moisturizing products like serums, oils, and masks that lock in moisture.

Be sure to avoid products free of sulfates. Products containing keratin will work wonders on your gray hair.

Consider color correction

When Aral noticed gray hair, she decided to go for a color correction treatment to keep those silver lines at bay. According to Aral, her stylist blended hair lengths with her silvery roots, fixing in baby highlights.

Towards the end of color correction, Aral’s stylist used dark brown hair color on the rest of the hair, which produced a full salt-and-pepper effect.

Be prepared for a serious price tag

It’s important to understand that going gray doesn’t come cheap, especially when your hair’s having difficulty producing the desired shade that you want. Sometimes, you must repeat the coloring process several times before you attain the look.

Aral said, ‘I spent seven hours in the salon, and I really saw how intensive the process was to justify the price tag.’ So, you might have to create a budget for graying hair.

Hit the highlights

In case your gray locks don’t sprout naturally as you’d love them too, experts suggest that your stylist emphasizes them with some carefully placed highlights. So, you’re already sporting some silver streaks; why not include a few more streaks on your head for that natural look?

Accessorize!

Never underestimate the power of accessories to enhance your new gray look. Aging women should rock their outfits with matching headbands, beanies, scarves, hats, and turbans as often as possible.

You can even cover up a bad hair day using accessories – just be creative!

Twist things up

Curly hair is the perfect disguise for mixed hair roots and can be a lifesaver when you start growing gray hair. If you don’t have natural twists, you can perm your hair to create a curly effect. Experts recommend this method as the best way to transition to gray without a noticeable or drastic change.

Stay sun safe

Hair expert Anabel Kingsley told Glamour Magazine in 2021 that ‘Since white or gray hair lacks pigment, it’s prone to UV damage. Therefore, it’s vital to use UV protection kits when you’re sprouting white hair.

Excess exposure to UV rays from the sun can cause gray hair to turn yellow, which is never a fitting appearance.

Enhance your shine

Side effects of gray hair include decreased oil secretion in the scalp. Insufficient oil will dry your hair, contributing to a dull appearance. The best way to boost your shine is to choose glossy products for your gray hair.

Also, use purifying shampoos and hair products that are specially formulated for colored or gray hair.

Toners

Colorists often apply toners to gray hair to achieve a cool gray hue. But once the product washes off, your hair can appear tinted yellow. Good Housekeeping suggests supplementing your hair with regular toning treatments (more costs, right?)

Toners are worth the hassle because they help you manage brassy tones and keep your locks on their best looks.

Keep Things Light

Gray hair is lighter locks of hair, so avoid heavy products like serums, waxes, and pomades. In a conversation with Prevention, Galotti pointed out that ‘they can coat gray hair and make it look dusty. Instead of these products, leverage hair sprays for styling and removing frizz.

Follow a silver hair influencer

You can overcome the anxiety of going gray by gleaning from success stories of people with similar experiences. Social media has a vast pool of influencers in various stages of gray hair growth.

Find an influencer you resonate with, and follow them for tips on going gray with ease. Their stories can encourage you when the going gets tough.

Don’t pluck out silver hair

The first time you saw a silver streak of hair, instinct moved you to pluck them out from your scalp. While your impulse move is valid, you should never pluck out grey hairs.

Creative director Kristjan Hayden told Chatelaine that plucking out gray hairs increases the risk of follicle damage. Sometimes, hair won’t grow out from a damaged follicle – and you risk going bald.

Find a gray hair stylist

Hairdressers often have a specific aspect that they perform so well. And if you’re thinking of getting a stylist to help you with grey hair, make sure the stylist understands how to care for gray hair.

Grey hair stylists provide precise haircuts, flawless highlights, and suitable coloring for aging women. Finding a stylist who specializes in salt-and-pepper hairstyles will make the journey easier.

Beautiful blends

Stylists use blending techniques like balayage and highlights to enhance your natural gray tones. The essence of blending is to achieve a natural gray hair color that makes you comfortable with going gray.

Like hairdresser Robert Eaton told Glamour, ‘Many women don’t want to go for block coverage anymore, but are looking for efficient ways to mask their gray hair.’

Always read the label

It sounds easy peasy, but it’s normal to become familiar with hair treatments and products that you can forget to read the label. Ensure you know the ingredients inside the hair serum or oil you’re trying to buy. It’s also vital to know what chemicals to avoid when selecting gray hair products, such as dimethicone.

According to Hayden’s interview in Chatelaine, ‘Dimethicone is not water-soluble, so sometimes if it’s in high quantities in products, it can go into your hair and not wash out, which will weigh your hair down.’

Nourish hair from the inside

Graying isn’t the only thing your hair experiences as you get older. Your hair also starts to thin out. To keep these changes at the barest minimum, you can include supplements in your diet. These supplements make your locks fuller and less prone to thinning out.

Several products on the market can suffice, but you must do your due diligence before choosing a supplement to add to your meals.

Understand what colors work with your hair

Even though shades of gray, white, and black clothing are compatible with silver hair, it doesn’t stop you from wearing any other colors. The best thing is to decide what hues work well with your new hair. Prevention advises graying women to stick to jewel tones like sapphire blue and ruby red.

Beware of heated styling tools

Straighteners, hair dryers, and curling irons are not your best friend when you’re going gray. The heat from these styling tools can turn your gray strands into an unacceptable yellow.

It’s Rosy suggests that the only way to beat brassiness in gray hair is to wash your hair every week with a clarifying shampoo.

Satin pillowcases

Caring for gray hair is almost a full-time job, especially when you are mid-transition. You need to pay attention to your tresses, even while you sleep. Byrdie recommends tying your hair securely before going to bed to maintain the condition of your locks. You can also use a silk pillowcase to reduce friction and prevent flyaways, frizz, and breakage.

Look up to your parents

If you want to know just how gray your hair may become, look at your parents. As Kingsley pointed out in Glamour, ‘When you go gray is largely down to the genes. If your mother or father started getting gray hair young, you’d likely do the same. On average, most people’s hair is 50% white by the time they turn 50.’

Embrace the new texture

Most people believe gray hair is coarser in texture when in fact, it is finer but drier. Fine, dry silver hair can be a good thing. Like Colorist Jax Williard told Allure magazine in 2018, ‘The texture (grays) give you can actually make your hair routine more exciting. Your hair would most likely dry quicker, and you will feel that it’s much thicker and longer.’

Boost your brows

While brows appear a bit alien from this subject, well-groomed eyebrows can accentuate your overall silver look. Gray hair can cause you to look washed out, but thickening a defined brow can work wonders in distinguishing your gray looks.

Take charge of your look

Don’t let other people’s concerns about a graying look make you weary about the process. Remember that the ball lies in your court to decide how going gray turns out. Whatever shade or haircut you decide, make sure it’s your desired style, and don’t let anyone twist your choices.

Play the long game

And who says you cannot keep long gray hair? Maintaining a long silver mane is a tasking process, but when it’s over, you’ll thank me. There’s that awkward in-between stage where your hair doesn’t look dark or grey, but don’t throw in the towel. Everything will turn out well soon.

Look on the bright side

Instead of sulking when you see your first grey streak, celebrate this discovery as your rite of passage into old age. Of course, you’re advancing in years, but it also means you’ve acquired a wealth of wisdom and experience that are products of an entire life. Look back on the good memories and remember them as you watch all your hair slowly turn grey.

Shun earthy tones

Earthy tones like olive green, rust, camel, and mustard give a yellow complexion. Making Midlife Matter suggests that you stick to fresh and natural colors like lavender, rose, and mint green, especially around your face.

Select the shades of your wardrobe with great care because this can help you achieve a more youthful look as you age.

Say goodbye to gold jewelry

Sadly, gold lovers will have to say their goodbyes to yellow jewelry because they make your skin appear sallow and don’t match gray hair. Platinum, silver, and white gold are more accessible shades of jewelry that can make your look pop.

Making Midlife Matter also notes that some added sparkle helps your silver mane look bling and youthful.

 

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