The Gray Hair Dilemma:: Embrace or Color?

The Gray Hair Dilemma:: Embrace or Color?

I spent an insane amount of time this morning examining my hair roots with a magnifying makeup mirror, an activity my therapist would most likely take issue with. The process was not meant to lower my self esteem, but to see just how much of my natural hair color is now gray. As expected, about eighty-five percent of my new growth is gray. Very few red {my natural color} hairs remain. 

My hair started to turn gray in my early twenties, the same as many in my family, so I fully expected the amount of gray I now have in my forties.  What I didn’t expect is the quickness of new hair growth. Gray hairs are stubborn and don’t take chemical coloring as well, so just a few weeks after coloring they are back again. 

I have hit a crossroads :: do I keep coloring {possibly damaging what little hair I have left} or do I look at other options?

Option 1 :: Embrace the Gray

Embracing my gray can go one of two ways.

I could be seen as a hipster who is just a few years behind the gray hair trend. I am still in shock that young people color their hair gray on purpose. Am I hip enough to go gray or will the combination of gray with my aging skin just make me appear older?

Or I could just go gray gracefully. Gray hair could make me appear wise and distinguished like the gray in my husband’s temples. There is such a thing as gray highlights that makes the grow-out process less painful. 

Option 2 :: Go Lighter

My mother allowed her hair to go full salt and pepper gray in her mid thirties when she had two young children. After being asked if she was our grandmother multiple times, she decided to go blonde which is the option that many women take to deal with this gray hair conundrum. 

Slowly incorporating blonde highlights into my red hair would allow new growth without the harsh contrast. Over time the percentage of highlights would increase until I would wind up being completely blonde {or white like my grandfather’s hair}. 

Option 3 :: Live a life of coloring

The Gray Hair Dilemma:: Embrace or Color?

Now I know blondes are rumored to have more fun,  but not everyone was given the complexion to pull off golden locks.  The multitude of hair coloring option makes it possible for us to not have to embrace gray in our forties. I admit I need to find hair color that is less likely to contribute to my already thinning hair, but I could see myself touching up my roots every three weeks or so for the next ten years. While the thought of not having to color my hair again is appealing, I am not sure I am ready to make that leap. 

As I have repeated to myself before it’s only hair, it will {hopefully} grow back or can be recolored no matter which road I decide to take.

How have you handled seeing your hair turn gray? Have you embraced your gray hair or do you cover them up? 


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