Manolo for the Beauty » To Gray or Not to Gray

To Gray or Not to Gray

By Glinda

So a while back, everybody was going gray.  From Tavi to Gaga, gray hair was all the rage.

Because, of course, it wasn’t their natural hair color.

But the whole gray hair trend amongst people who have never experienced a true gray hair coming out of their own head sparked a debate amongst those who have. And who, if they allowed it, would have more than just a few gray “highlights.”

I would be one of those people.  If I stopped going to the salon to get my hair highlighted with blonde, probably sixty percent of my hair would be silver.

The other day I noticed my husband was getting some gray around his temples, and my first thought was that it looked sort of distinguished.

My second thought was annoyance that men always seem to look “distinguished” with gray hair whilst women simply look “old.”

I’ll be forty in a few months, and I have a one year old and an eight year old.

I happen to sort of like the silver hair, which is shiny and pretty, but I’ll be damned if someone at the playground is going to think I am my daughter’s grandmother. Because, you know, there is no way someone with gray hair could possibly procreate, right?

I’m not sure the micro-trend we saw last spring and summer has translated into a wellspring of women suddenly embracing their naturally gray hair.

I’m guessing women are going to choose to continue to be a slave to the salon, or to the box, or whatever way they alter their color.

I know my salon is pretty much guaranteed to get my money for at least the next ten years.

The revolution will have to begin somewhere else. I’m too chicken.

10 Responses to “To Gray or Not to Gray”

  1. La Petite Acadienne Says:

    Sigh…I hear you. I would love to be able to rock a gray streak, or a shiny head of silver. But as a redhead, I worry that my gray hair would just be that sickly yellowish, tobacco-stained-looking shade.

    Ah well. I’ve decided that once I hit 80, I’ll just walk around in jeweled turbans and caftans all the time anyway (I think Plumcake and I will have to form a society), so my hair colour won’t matter.

  2. Jane2 Says:

    I too have the yellowish gray hair, not the lovely silver, and consider the salon my best friend. A bunch of us were sitting around talking about our original hair colour, and the best comment was, “I can’t really remember, but I damn sure know it wasn’t this burgundy!”.

  3. dcsurfergirl Says:

    I can’t face my gray either. I can still use semi-permanent color and it looks OK. Maybe Manic Panic could be fun!

  4. Wendy Says:

    My grey is a gorgeous silver, but it’s very patchy. For the longest time, I had a patch the size of a nickel on the top of my head (in the place where I bonked my noggin repeatedly in my younger years, which is probably no coincidence), and over the years it’s grown to the size of a quarter, and finally a toonie (I’m Canuck, you see). And there is a bit of salt-and-pepper action happening in other places, but all of it is on the front and sides; the back remains resolutely brown.

    So, until I’m solid silver, my stylist and I have agreed that the bottle is my friend, and I go in for regular replenishments of my (now signature) blend of brown, blonde, fuschia, and violet.

  5. Jennie Says:

    A few years ago I had some surgery and following therapy to rid myself of some sort of grodiness. As my hair came back, I decided to keep it natural and it is substantially grey. Occassionally, I want to go back to coloring it but I really need that extra $$ for other things (food comes to mind). The comments go back and forth. I’ve been called my sister’s mother and I’ve had people wanting to know who did my dye job because it was Fabulous Darlin! I am about to turn 55 and I think the secret is to keep everything else young and current (not fadish or teen). I change hair styles often and my makeup changes with the times. I have friends that look much older because they are trapped in the 70’s or 80’s style.

  6. Rhonda Says:

    I’m 42 and I’ve been coloring it for a while now. The roots are still dark but there’s a fair bit of gray there. My mother was all-silver by 65, but my paternal grandmother is still salt-and-pepper at 90. So I have no idea which way my hair will go.

    I will ditch the colorist either when the roots come in completely silver, or I have great-grandchildren, whichever comes first. (Either way the color won’t fool anyone. Those silver roots tell all!)

    Perhaps I will follow my mother’s example and dye it deep purple. (She loves Manic Panic). But until then, I’m keeping the colorist. No salt and pepper for this hot tamale!

  7. larkspur Says:

    I saw my first grey when I was 16. Funny – I never thought to dye it even though my mother still does. I’m now 46 and almost completely silvery grey, with some streaks of dark. I got a lot of negative comments about it when I was in my late 20’s and early 30’s, entirely from older women with very “black” hair. Also from my mother. I really just decided it was me and let it go. Other than the hair a lot of things about me look younger than my age, so I think the contrast is shocking for some. Interestingly, I have gotten some very positive comments from random strangers about how beautiful my hair is over the last few years – as many from men as women.
    I think once you start dying you get locked into the cycle and never have a chance to see how you would look. Also, you don’t get the chance to gradually become grey. If you suddenly stop dying your hair, you have a fast transition from color to grey. It’s a personal choice, but one we often don’t allow ourselves to see, and thus don’t make the choice.

  8. Glinda Says:

    @LPA- I’m not one for turbans and caftans, although caftans certainly sound comfy. I think I could rock my silver hair, I just don’t want to at this moment, if that makes any sense?

    @Jane2- lol!

    @dcsurfergirl- I would love to see my husband faint upon seeing my purple hair.

    @Wendy- Your hair color sounds beautiful. I agree, I would wait until the color was a bit more uniform to commit to the silver.

    @Jennie- You are totally right that a dated look is much more aging than gray hair could ever be.

    @Rhonda- I’m sure you can rock your hair no matter what color it is!

    @larkspur- Good for you for accepting your natural color. You are much more valiant than me. You are absolutely right that you get locked into a coloring cycle and it’s hard to break out of.

  9. La Petite Acadienne Says:

    I must say, however, that dyeing my hair is much less onerous a chore since I’ve tried that Clairol Perfect 10 stuff. It was SO much easier to put through my hair than anything else I’ve tried.

  10. Fabrisse Says:

    Nothing is more aging than fake hair color. I’m nearly fifty. I have a wide Celtic streak and more coming in at the temples, but people ask me if the grey is premature, bless them. Like Jennie said, above, keeping your style current is more important to looking younger than hair color is.

Disclaimer: Manolo the Shoeblogger is not Manolo Blahnik
Copyright © 2004-2009; Manolo the Shoeblogger, All Rights Reserved

  • Recent Comments:

  • Subscribe!


    Manolo the Shoeblogger

    Restore Hormally Aging Skin


  • Archives:

  • December 2012
  • November 2012
  • October 2012
  • September 2012
  • August 2012
  • July 2012
  • June 2012
  • May 2012
  • April 2012
  • March 2012
  • February 2012
  • January 2012
  • December 2011
  • November 2011
  • October 2011
  • September 2011
  • August 2011
  • July 2011
  • June 2011
  • May 2011
  • April 2011
  • March 2011
  • February 2011
  • January 2011
  • December 2010
  • November 2010
  • October 2010