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Unlock the Keys to Absolutely Irresistible Gray Hair

Gray Hair Styles

Rules for a Successful Transformation to Gorgeous Gray Hair

The going with naturally gray hair question has come up often enough in my classes Finding the Right Hairstyle for You! to know that it is on a lot of your minds.

Just picture yourself down the road a few more years or decades, whatever the case may be. You’ve been coloring whites since you can’t remember, and now you are tired of the hassle and expense of touching up gray roots every 4 to 6 weeks. How do you go about going “au naturel” with a beautiful gray hair style?

Most of you know you shouldn’t just let your grays grow out – way to scary! If you see someone using this strategy, please help them out with what you learn here. (The easiest solution you can give them is to go on a mission to find a great hair colorist.)

Some women have been left without answers to this question and therefore think they have no alternative but to look hideous in the process, or they just keep coloring their hair when they really don’t want to.

So, first of all, if your hairdresser “hems and haws” think twice, and engage a good hair colorist. You want a hair colorist who is confident in the strategy they are going to use. If your hairdresser seems shaky, there is a good reason. They are not sure what to do with coloring gray hair! If a hair dresser takes you on with this attitude, they are surely getting experience at your expense. Follow your instincts carefully on this one. If it just does not feel right, be assertive.

 

Short Layered Grey Hairstyle

Natural Gray Hair Strategy Suggestions:

  • If your hair has been permanently colored or bleached, a short haircut will be the quickest and simplest to your goal. Then you can use a semi-permanent hair color or hair color rinse in your natural shade to blend till your hair grows out.
  • You can have a hair colorist blend your new growth with “lowlights”. Lowlighting is just the opposite of highlighting. Depositing streaks of hair color using a semi-permanent hair color to blend gray hair until the old hair color has been fully cut out. Your natural hair color will start to come in naturally, but without a line of demarcation.
  • The darker your hair color is, the trickier the process of going gray natrually becomes. The process of lowlighting hair may take a bit longer, but it is worth the effort. This is why going with a short haircut would be a good idea. It will make the process much smoother, quicker certainly less expensive.

Next time you place an order at Amazon take a peak at “Going Gray, Looking Great! By Diana Lewis Jewell,” she’s the guru on the topic. And for more ideas on going gray naturally check out my article How to Grow Out Gray Hair.

Barb Quinn on Google+  

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Got a question, war story or comment about this topic? Click on the "Leave Your Comments" link at the very bottom of this article. Some of my best ideas for future articles come from reading reader comments. I'd love to hear from you!





21 Comments »

  1. Thank you for the great feedback! Gray hair can be tricky. Are you thinking about growing out your white locks? If so, don’t miss the blog How to Grow Out Gray Hair. It’s an incredible article with lots of good insider tips to make the process simple and stunning!

    Good luck!

    Comment by Michelle Skye — August 14, 2013 @ 4:15 pm

  2. In my opinion the best way to deal with gray hair is to find how some of the best style gurus and celebrities deal with it then mimic it as best you can. This can mean either dying it or getting a graceful cut that looks good in gray.

    Comment by Avalon Cosmetology — August 13, 2013 @ 12:36 pm

  3. Thank you very much for your feedback. Natural hair can be simply amazing, and we’re happy to hear that you’re embracing it. Sometimes the winter months can take a toll on your hair. Check out the fabulous blog Winter Hair Care Season is Here to learn insider tips on how to end your battle with winter hair today.

    Good luck!

    Comment by Michelle Skye — March 2, 2013 @ 2:08 pm

  4. Beauty and individuality: try to let the natural look happen for awhile….makeup emhances gray😁 and change is good. I love my natural hair….god did change for a reason….it will work

    Comment by crline caffin — February 24, 2013 @ 7:07 pm

  5. Hi Karen,

    Growing out gray hair can sometimes be a challenge, especially when you’re hair becomes two toned. Have you ever thought about adding a few subtle highlights? Highlights add dimension and can help make the darkness at the ends of your hair seem less noticeable. Our article Hair Highlighting with Lemon Juice provides an easy, natural way to highlight your hair without chemicals.

    Lowlights added to your hair in the same shade as the ends is another option. Although this process is performed with hair color, the color generally never touches your skin. To be on the safe side, always perform a patch test. Place a small amount of the product on your wrist for approximately 30 minutes to test if your skin will have any type of reaction to the hair color. Beauty schools perform these services for a fraction of the price of salons. You can find a beauty school near you by visiting the Beauty Schools Directory.

    Good luck!

    Comment by Michelle Skye — April 28, 2012 @ 12:54 pm

  6. So good to read inspiring stories. I’ve got naturally dark brown hair which started going grey when I was 30, so I began dying it black, I’ve loved the colour and kept it up for 11 years, then I noticed I was getting a reaction to the dye. After a visit to the gp I was told I’d developed a sensitive scalp and was advised not to use hair dye anymore. I was devastated :-( but I was more concerned about the reaction becoming worse so I agreed. I had been dyeing my hair about every 4 weeks with a permanent blue black dye so had no idea how much grey would appear! I also wanted to try and fade the intensity of the black so after much research online I used the anti dandrufff shampoo method, big big huge mistake!!!!! I really found out just how allergic I’d become, yes loads of black dye came out (impressive as id not dyed it for 6 months) and it did dull the black, but also burnt my scalp and skin around face and my neck :-( was EXTREMLY sore! So the grey is coming through, not masses but enough, it looks like it’s mainly around the front of my hairline, with a nice streak appearing on the right side. I’m embracing it now and looking forward to letting my natural colour come back, though I will have to go shorter as my hair was waist length, I gone to just below shoulders now and might have to go shorter again if the difference is too great, as the last 6-8 inchs are still quite black, any ideas on how I can keep the length? My natural colour is now slightly lighter more of a chestnut brown with 40% grey.

    Comment by Karen cree — April 24, 2012 @ 3:29 am

  7. Hi Janet,

    Thank you so much for sharing your success story! Hopefully it will inspire other women to embrace their natural beauty as well.

    I hope your day is far from gray!

    Comment by Michelle Skye — March 17, 2012 @ 3:32 pm

  8. I tried to grow out my gray in my forties but chickened out when an 80-yr-old male friend ridiculed me! 2 years ago I got the bug again and found “Going Gray, Looking Great!” and found courage within its pages to try again. I switched hair stylists because mine was so against it and I felt she wouldn’t give it her best. My new colorist gave me low lights and highlights for my medium brown hair. After 6 months its looked good enough to stop and I’ve never turned back. I love way it looks and feels now that it has all grown in. It has been 1 1/2 years since I last colored it and it has become a silvery mix of colors that is lovely. I’ve had many compliments from both men and women. I am a very young 56 and I will never color again!

    Comment by Janet Thompson — March 16, 2012 @ 3:21 pm

  9. Hi Megs:
    You Go Girl!! . . . You just gave thousands of women moral support to understanding that grey can be gorgeous.

    Comment by Barb Quinn — November 13, 2011 @ 11:44 am

  10. I noticed that heads stopped turning after I turned 60. I had been hiding my gray hair by colouring it blonde for years. Shortly after that I thought why colour it any more because nobody notices me anyway. I let let it go gray, styled it in a classic bob to just above jaw line, tucked behind one ear. Heads started turning for a second look once again. Eleven years later I now wear it very short and still draw admiring glancef both sexes am not a beauty, but I look youthful and fresh.

    Comment by Megs — November 11, 2011 @ 11:50 am

  11. I’m a marine and I tight my poor grey hair fo sailing. Do you have a better idea to ingrow my tree-hairs “catogan” ashore?

    Comment by schmidt — October 5, 2011 @ 2:20 pm

  12. I am having a challenge finding a hairstylist in San Diego who specializes in helping women to go gray gracefully. My stylist of ten years has been unsupportive, and tries to talk me out of going gray every time I bring it up. If anyone knows of a stylist who will help me to transition, I would appreciate his or her name.

    Comment by Barb — October 5, 2011 @ 7:10 am

  13. I am 57 live in JHB S.A. the constant fighting with regrowth on dark hair has been driving me crazy. I am probably 60 – 70 % total grey and have not tinted for 7 weeks. Keep it tied back and looking forward to the new me, grey short and free to love myself just the way I am

    Comment by sue — September 11, 2011 @ 10:11 am

  14. I am forty years old and close to seventy percent gray and white-haired, the rest being remnants of auburn. My hair is shoulder length. My temples are pure white. My husband loves it, and I get compliments all the time from people who think it’s professionally done.

    When I consider what I could spend money on, all I have to do is look at the crow’s feet around my eyes and there you go. Hair dye, or Roc Eye Cream?

    Sigh. Roc Eye Cream. There’s just too much going South on this girl to worry about hair that looks fine.

    Comment by daphne — July 14, 2009 @ 8:02 pm

  15. I’m almost 60 and stopped coloring my hair a couple of years ago because it just looked bad – red at the roots and nearly black on the ends – and I wanted a classier look. Plus, my scalp stayed sore and red all the time. The upkeep was expensive, time-consuming and just not fun any longer. To my delight, I found out during the growing out process that I have mostly shiny white hair, and as a white-haired woman I receive more compliments than I ever did as a brunette. The key to looking good is to have a young hairstyle – definitely no granny cuts allowed! I wear mine in a pageboy; in other words, straight and down to the top of my shoulders and turned under, with bangs. It’s called a bob now. It’s classy and easy and dramatic and even my husband loves it. It’s also very freeing to just be myself. Hope this encourages some of you to give it a try. I’m happy with my hair life again!

    Comment by lin — March 20, 2009 @ 10:55 pm

  16. I’ve just turned 50 and decided to stop poisoning myself with hair colour. My scalp has been blistering and sore for the past few months each time I used a colour, even the ‘natural’ ones. My hair was red/brown and medium length. I found a good colourist, she used pure gentle bleach to strip out my old colour (lotsa foils) and cut my hair much shorter, to the delight of my friends. A month later, I had more colour stripped again using many foils and had a toner added to reduce the yellowing. This helped lots. Another month later and a shorter cut again, and stripping the remaining colour out of the whole lot, and my hair has never looked better and the comments have never been better. The regrowth was hardly noticeable, however the hair ends were a bit brittle, hence the shorter hair cuts. I’m almost there with about half my lengh very blonde (stripped) and half regrowth (varying shades of gray). I’m looking forward to what colour I’ll end up – a mix I think, white, silver and grey. I’m loving the process. I hope this encourages others to go natural.

    Comment by Judy — February 14, 2009 @ 2:37 am

  17. I AM GOING TO BE 58 THIS NOV. 17 AND ON MAR. 30 I SHAVED MY HEAD WITH CLIPPERS AT A BARBER SHOP CAUSE I JUST WANTED TO GO NATURAL AND MY HEAD IS ALOT OF WHITE AND SOME BLACK I THINK IT IS PRETTY VERY SOFT. I WOULD LIKE A NICE HAIR STYLE THAT WILL NOT MAKE ME LOOK OLD. ANY SUGGESTIONS WOULD BE NICE. MY HAIR IS PAST MY EARS NOW. HOPE YOU CAN HELP. THANKS ROCKY

    Comment by ROCKY SNEED — November 1, 2008 @ 8:50 am

  18. Please help! I had Dark brown hair. I am 53 yrs. young. Now my hair is mostly gray. My hair has always been extremely thick. The strands are individually thick and course. The graying hairs are really stiff. I want to keep my graying hair. However, I need help to soften it and make it brighter. Is there any product out there I can use. Please e-mail me the answer to my problem.

    Comment by Betty — September 5, 2008 @ 8:44 pm

  19. I cannot find any sites that show styles for the “older” woman, especially any styles for grey hair. I cannot colour my hair due to being exteremely allergic to any hair colouring products, but I am tired of the super short styles. I am presently growing out my hair and it is shoulder length and wavy/curly but fine. So, it stays curly from about the ears on down, but the top is flat. Any suggestions?

    Comment by Annie — February 1, 2007 @ 7:55 pm

  20. believe it or not i am ready to go gray well not exactly gray but i want my hair to be the exact color of say emmylou harris’ it is beautiful and my hair is naturally a medium strawberry blond with silver not gray streaks in the bang area how can i achieve this look see emmylou harris stumbles into grace website address not sure of

    Comment by lilli titus — September 10, 2006 @ 5:51 pm

  21. I have had blonde highlights put in at the salon for about two years now. THey do not quite cover my gray (my hair is medium brown with a salting of grey). I cannot double process my hair because it is naturally fine and weak so I want to grow out the blonde highlights and then either color the hair or leave it alone. In the meantime, would glazing help to cover the gray and blend the lightened color with the darker roots? I have long hair.

    Comment by kathy — February 13, 2006 @ 11:30 pm

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