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7 Weird Things That Happen When You Go Gray

Inside: Some of the weird things that happen when you go gray!

Embracing your gray hair seems like such a straightforward thing to do.

One day you wake up, decide to stop dyeing your hair, and voila! You’ve made your choice, and you no longer need to spend a minute thinking about it.


As we all know, it’s a lot more complicated than that. 

Ditching the dye and accepting your gray hair usually results in a lot of introspection and hand-wringing.  “Have I made the right choice? Will I look older?”, etcetera.

All of those thoughts are normal and part of the process.  As you can see in one of my most popular posts, going gray is a BIG DEAL! But there are also some unexpected side effects to going gray.

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You Become a Selfie-Snapping Narcissist

image of selfie woman
“Looking Good!”

For years, when I was asked to provide a photo of myself, I never could find one that didn’t have either a family member or a friend in the photo with me. 

I never took selfies where I was the ONLY person in the frame.

Now, I am the Queen of Selfies!

Oh my gosh, if you saw the camera roll on my iPhone….it’s embarrassing, really! But let’s face it – watching the grays come in is FASCINATING!

I don’t get tired of seeing my own gray hair, and I don’t get tired of seeing yours.  Who could get tired of looking at gorgeous gray hair?!

pink and blue background with images of a woman's hand holding iphones containing gray hair woman selfies

Aside from selfies, do you also:

a) find yourself checking out your gray hair in the rearview mirror at stoplights?

b) Ask others to take pictures of the back of your head?

c) Constantly check the underside of your hair to see if more gray is coming in?

Please tell me it’s not just me!?

Men Come Out of the Woodwork

image of romantic man weird things that happen when you go gray
“I love me some gray-haired ladies!”

If you are on Instagram, you’ve most likely experienced this – you start posting pix of yourself with gray hair and you get a FLOOD of male followers!

I didn’t realize that there is a large subset of men who find gray hair very attractive.  Who knew?

And in real life, I’ve gotten more male attention than I have in years.

To be honest, after being the subject of often-unwanted attention from men since I was a young teen, I was kind of enjoying not being the object of their attention as much as the years went by.

But in the past 8 months since I ditched the dye? Forget it! I’ve had men flirt with me online and in real life to an alarming degree.

The other day at church, I could barely make it into the coffee hour because a man wouldn’t stop flirting with me.  What the heck?

I just finished reading Anne Kreamer’s book, Going Gray She had a similar experience.  It seems that many men care more about authenticity and self-confidence than they do about hair color. 


Your Chest Is No Longer What People Stare At

“Why is she talking about my chest?”, you’re probably wondering!

Well, as most gals know, sometimes when you’re talking to a man, you will catch him talking back…to your chest.  Ugh!

“Please look at my eyes”, right?!

Believe me, your gray roots will take the attention off of your chest, past your face (where it belongs) and straight to the top of your head!

brunette woman gray roots
My Roots in April – They Don’t Talk!

It’s funny- I often catch both men AND women talking to the top of my head now.  Considering I’m fairly tall, this often has a very funny effect – some petite ladies have to really crane their necks while they are talking to me.

They are too polite, for the most part, to say anything about my gray roots, but you can see that they are VERY focused on it.

Your Young Kids May Worry About Your Mortality

image of cemetery

Let’s face it – in our culture, people still equate gray hair with age.  If nobody dyed their hair, people would soon see that people of all ages have gray hair. 

Mine started at 17, and I was probably 90% gray by 40.   There are young women on Instagram who are embracing their grays in their 20s, and they look fabulous!

But our culture has conditioned us to think that only very old people have gray hair.  That’s what 60 years of hair-dye advertising does to a culture!

I have a son who has high-functioning autism.  He depends on me a lot, and when I first started going gray, it scared him a bit.

He equated gray hair with old age and asked me point-blank if my gray hair meant I was going to die soon. 

I quickly reassured him that I was fine, and he is now one of my biggest gray-hair supporters.

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Apparently, this isn’t unusual.  I’ve read similar stories by other mothers and grandmothers on Instagram and Facebook. 

If you have younger or special-needs children, this is a conversation that might come up while you are transitioning.

You Get Called Brave… A Lot

image of soldier and kid
This Woman Is Brave… But Me? Just for Going Gray?

I’m sure this happened to you already, but it if it hasn’t yet, no worries… because it WILL happen!

Other women will tell you that you are “brave” to go gray.  Sometimes, you’ll hear this more than once in the same day!

It seems to be one of the most common remarks people make when they see your transitioning hair.

I really think that most women who say this mean well.  They really do! 

In their eyes, it’s very brave to go gray in a culture that values youth and beauty above all else.  It really does feel good to buck society’s insistence that we all color our gray hair.

It’s just that it gets TIRESOME to hear how “brave” you are over and over again. 

“Did I rescue a child from a burning building? Did I single-handedly fight off the Grizzly Bear that was attacking the Cub Scouts?” No – I just stopped dyeing my hair.  Jeez!

Also, it’s the tone of how it’s said.  Sometimes, ladies will clutch your arm, look at you with concern, and THEN tell you how brave you are, which has the decided effect of making you feel like they think you are CRAZY and that you will look AWFUL.

For more on this topic, check out The #1 Downside to Going Gray from Dyed Hair

Your Hair Becomes a Topic of Conversation

A lot of people will talk about your hair.  Even if you are an extrovert, like me, it can be a little surprising to get so much attention focused on your appearance.

I have walked in on conversations about my hair at work and at church.  I’ve been sitting at a large table full of people and caught people at the other end of the table talking about my hair.

It’s usually complimentary, thank goodness. If it wasn’t, that would be worse!

image of weird things that happen when you go gray
“Ladies, Let’s Change the Subject, Shall We? I’ve Grown Weary of Chatting About My Hair.”

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You Hear THIS All the Time

Once you start your transition (or even after you’re fully gray), expect to hear this a lot “YOUR gray hair looks great, but I could NEVER go gray!”

This conversation comes up a lot with my work colleagues and my friends.  Personally, I don’t believe in trying to convince someone else to ditch the dye.  They will know when they are ready. 

So that’s what I tell them!

image of weird things that happen when you go gray
“Even If I Weren’t Three Sheets to the Wind, Dolores, I Would Still Say It – You Look FABULOUS with Gray Hair, But I Could NEVER Pull It Off!”

They will also tell me that my gray color is nice, but when their grays poke through, they look wiry or are a bad color.

Having gone through this, and having seen a bunch of other women’s transition stories, I tell them the truth – you won’t truly know what what your true natural hair color is until ALL of the dye is cut off.

Women You’ve Met Will Start Going Gray, Too

Despite the naysayers, your gray hair will have a surprising effect on the women around you (friends, strangers, colleagues, and acquaintances).

I call it the silver hair domino effect.

image of 3 female friends hugging each other against a forested background

Here’s what it is: Once other women see you out in public rocking your naturally silver hair, they start to see gray hair as a legitimate choice – sometimes for the first time.

And this happens even if you never say one word to them about it!

By going out in public confidently with your gray hair, you are sending a message to other women (and more importantly to the younger generation) that it’s okay to be gray.

And once they see that it’s OK to go gray, they will do the same. I’ve run into many acquaintances (at Boy Scouts, church, etc.) who’ve told me that I inspired them to go gray even though I never proselytized to them about it.

Younger People Will Love It, But Others? Not So Much

Now, speaking of the younger generation, don’t be surprised if the older generation gives you grief about going gray, but the younger generation gives you nothing but compliments.

Young people of both sexes seem to love natural silver hair, but many older people, (especially many older women), emphatically do not.

Try not to take it personally and just enjoy being your fabulous self.

Some People Won’t Believe THIS is Your Actual Color

Don’t be surprised if (while you’re out in public being gorgeously gray), you come across people who flat-out refuse to believe that THIS is your natural hair color.

This happens to me quite often. Women ask me where I get my hair colored, and they are shocked when I tell them that this IS my real hair color.

Why does this happen? Well, I think people have a gray hair stereotype in their heads. And when your gray hair doesn’t match that stereotype, they have trouble believing it.

In fact, sometimes you find yourself in the very strange position of having to insist that, YES, this is your natural hair!

Honestly, it’s a great and fun position to be in except for those rare occasions when somebody digs their heels in and thinks you’re a liar. And that unfortunately does sometimes happen.

You Get Startled By Your Own Reflection

Want to hear something strange?

Even YEARS after transitioning, you might find yourself being startled by your own reflection in a mirror or a shop window.

It happens to me all the time even though I’m a full-time gray-hair content creator, and I LOVE my gray hair.

But even I am sometimes surprised to see me with gray hair. Who is this woman?!

surprised woman with salt and pepper curly hair wearing a tank top against a pink background

And don’t get me wrong, it’s not a bad surprise. It’s more like startled delight. But sometimes I do get a jolt to see myself with light-colored hair after spending 50 years of my life with dark brunette hair.

And I don’t know if that ever goes away.

There’s a famous story in my family about my great-aunt Margie. She went to the makeup counter at Marshall Field’s in Chicago years ago to buy some lipstick.

The makeup lady handed her a tube of lipstick that she thought would look nice, and Aunt Margie opened the tube, took one peek at the lipstick and said, “Hot pink lipstick? With THIS red hair?”

And the makeup lady just looked at her dumbfounded.

That’s when Aunt Margie suddenly remembered that she had gray hair. In fact, she’d had gray hair for many years by that point!

Video: Unexpected Things That Happen When You Go Gray


Have you had any weird or unexpected side effects while transitioning to gray hair?

If you have, please comment below.  I’d love to hear them!

Did you enjoy this post? If so, you might also like:

A Gray Hair Glossary

100 Fascinating Gray Hair Stats You’ve Never Seen Before!

How to Make Your Cold Turkey Gray Hair Transition Fun!

What Does It Mean To Be a Silver Sister?

The Surprising Side Effects of Embracing Your Grays

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  1. I’m 55 and a dyed brunette, and I’ve been letting my grey grow out for 4 months. At first I was a little self conscious but now I’m used to it, and 100% committed. People have been commenting but only positive things, not that I care what people think anyway. I thought I might strip my hair colour and then put in a grey toner, I stripped it a few years ago and it was a pale coppery colour and that was only after one treatment so two treatment should do the job. But I was looking it today and I actually like the two tone look for now. Plus I would like to do the transition slowly to get used to the change. At some point maybe at 12 months I might strip and tone it.

    1. Stripping can damage your hair, so I think you’ve made the right choice (not that you need my approval 😉)

    2. It’s been 6months since I started going gray. I’ve been a dark brunette with just past my shoulders length for years ! I’ve been going through the roller coaster of emotions. Always looking and brushing my hair trying to get it to hurry up and grow out! I wanna see I wanna see what it looks like. Nobody talks to me about my hair! Nobody! Like it’s not there! It’s comical almost… but then I have self doubts. But I’m going to see this through. It’s scary and fun at the same time. I’m 66 and ready for a change!

  2. I am very appreciative of you!
    I have been dying my hair since I was 16.
    I am now 71.
    After 2 hip replacement operations; I did not have the patience to continue dying my hair;so I let the gray come in.
    I love it!
    I look better with the grey now ; then I have ever looked with any other color I dyed my hair.
    It is not fully all grown out as of yet and I look forward to seeing how I will look when it is all grown out.
    My husband loves it too!
    Thank you Katie ; I always look forward to your e mails!

    1. Thanks, Sherry! I’m so glad to hear this, and so happy that you love your hair!

  3. Renna I Cannon says:

    my silver right down the part i have dark brown hair with highlights, i go every 4 weeks to cover gray 64 years old but very nervous. helps to read about others.

  4. As my hair was going gray I would put highlights in it until I had enough gray to make it pretty and now that it’s all gray I love it and get so many complemets on my hair all the time . And gray is very popular color right now

    1. I’m two months in and thinking about going with highlights for a while for an easier transition. Any advice?

      1. When I decided to go grey I went cold turkey I bought a couple of boxes of platinum blond 8 shades lighter and put them through my hair a couple of weeks apart then when I washed it I put a purple toner in and bingo I went from mousy to grey in two weeks It’s Snow White around the front and the rest is a bit natural and grey combined I get lots of compliments

  5. I was literally turned down for a job, for which I was overqualified, because of my silvers. One of the other employees said she doubted my ability to learn their software… I’m sure she thought me too old. Really? I volunteered to work for a week or two as a trial, but she still was negative. I think it was a blessing I didn’t get that job!

    1. I think you dodged a bullet with that one! Wow – that would have been a terrible place to work if that was their attitude.

  6. Hey Katie, I was scrolling through looking for a new style to try & enjoyed your read plus comments. My story begins with a breast cancer diagnosis 11 years ago. While waiting on test results to determine the treatment route, I decided to find out just what color my hair really was. I had covered my “white halo” for nearly 2 decades. What I discovered was white hair which, once all the dyed was grown out & trimmed off, is silky soft as well as healthy. It took about 6 months to reach a length I was comfortable getting styled (so, stick with it ladies!). I have found keeping a loose, slightly bouncy style counters the “old-lady” comments. (That & smiling; people look younger with smiles!) My mantra is “The creator of the universe is my hair color technician!” 🙃

    1. I love your mantra, Laurie! Your hair sounds beautiful. I’m sorry you went through breast cancer; wishing you good health & happiness! Thanks for writing in.

    2. Great post love your hairdresser too!

  7. Carol de Sévigné says:

    Hi Katie
    I am in my early sixties and stopped dying my hair about three years ago. It took about two years for my hair to return back to normal. My problem is I am still quite brunette with grey ‘highlights’ which I think makes my hair look dull. My husband and my children think it looks nice but I cringe every time I look in the mirror. One friend actually told me I’m too young to go grey. I chose not to listen to her. Another woman asked me what my husband thought. Which I found really insulting. I told her my husband is grey and he actually prefers natural hair and not dyed. He is very supportive so no issues there. I guess what I find hard is when I see pictures of myself it kind of shocks me. I agree that it takes bravery – not heroic bravery but bravery nonetheless especially when ‘friends’ judge you. I won’t go back to dying my hair because Im not willing to go through the two year process again but how can I feel better about my choice? I know this is sweating the small stuff. Perhaps that is my answer
    Thanks for listening❤️

    1. Hi, Carol: I think one thing that can really help is if you try very hard to stop associating gray hair with ageHow Not To Look “Old” with Gray Hair. It’s just another shade of hair color, and some of us are fully gray in our 20s while there are people on this Earth in their 90s who have NO gray hair. It’s almost like a mantra you have to repeat to yourself – “Gray is just another shade of hair color, and Mother Nature knows what she’s doing.” :-). This article might help you figure out a way to like your gray hair, even if you don’t right nowWhat To Do If You Hate Your Gray Hair. Hope that helps!

    2. This is exactly where I am presently…

  8. Aileen Ryan says:

    I’m 41 now and last dye was May 2018. I went from dark brown to grey after dying my hair since I was 17. I was sick of dying it every 4 weeks due to regrowth and was also developing allergies to the dye.
    I’m white at the front and salt and pepper on the rest, getting whiter by the day. The front of my hair was always more grey that the rest but went white when my dad died in August 2018 so I decided to stay going. I’m not sure would I do it again, it was hard to adjust to. My hair was a constant topic of conversation at work for about a year from when I started the process, mostly women commenting (oh, I didn’t like it at the start, but it do now that its grown out..like OK…I’m glad You like my hair 🙄)
    I get a lot of friend requests from men on Instagram and some in real life comment on how they love the colour and definitely talk to my face now. A few women have asked me where I get the colour done and 1 told me I inspired her to stay going on her journey to grey which was lovely to hear.
    I’ve been called brave too, to let it go grey so young…my answer, it’s just hair. What’s the worst that could happen, I’ll hate it and dye it again? I’ve so much more hair now, I can’t get over all the new hair growing all the time. Who knows what damage the dye was doing? It’s so worth it to me to have gone through this process. I feel like I learned alot about myself and care less what others think of me now. I think it makes me look younger, whereas the brown didnt suit my complexion anymore, the white/grey makes my eyes seem brighter and suits my skin tone much better. Keep going anyone who’s starting or “in” the process! You’ll be glad you did. Apologies for the length of the comment..

  9. When I colored my hair, it made my face and body look old by comparison. Now, my gray hair makes my face and body look young by comparison. I’ll take it!

  10. Man, my experience has been so different from the writer of this article. I’m 48 and stopped dying my hair a year and a half ago. I’m just about all white in front and my temples and grey in the back and sides. I have gotten no comments from anyone about my hair. No man has flirted with me. No strange man has spoken to me. In fact, men have never once flirted with me my entire life (or looked at my chest…I have nothing there to stare at anyway!). No one at work has said anything. No one has said I’m brave. My husband hasn’t even said anything. What has happened: My kids both said I looked like grandma after I got a haircut. One woman was surprised I was the mom of an 11 year old. Another woman thought I was the grandma to my kids. Both of these ladies were strangers. I am pretty sure the difference in our experiences is that I am not an attractive woman. When you are not attractive most people don’t really talk to you. I’m used to it and don’t care…I have a great family and great friends.

  11. I decided to transition from dark brown to natural because the white roots at the top of my head made scalp-coverage difficult (I’ve had hair loss) when contrasted against the dark dyed hair. I worked with a colorist for a while, but once March 2020 hit I started bleaching my dark roots, primarily in the back, myself. I did a good job until a moment’s inattention in November had me messing up the proportion of bleach to developer. But it was trying to do it right just a week later that really caused the problem. I had hair breakage at the crown of my head – which you fortunately can’t see in my video work from home. So now I can’t bleach because of the damage I caused, and the hair in the back is crazy-dark for a 71 year old! I tried root coverup (L’Oreal) but the lightest they have was yellow instead of the pretty white the rest of my hair is. Are there any white coverups to hide the dark roots while it grows out and I get to see what the heck color(s) my hair really is/are? (Disappointed my natural color is not yet white!)

    1. How to get the shades of dark grey in back of head the same silvery white as the top and sides.

  12. Once I decided to go gray, I didn’t want to wait for it to grow in. So I’ve gotten platinum highlights all over my head. The color growing in is even prettier than my hightlights.

  13. Pam McNaughton says:

    I dyed my hair for decades and finally took the plunge and went grey. One of the most surprising things for me was how my self-confidence soared. Grey hair is so liberating and I quickly realized that my grey colour didn’t mean I looked old, it just added a new dimension to my look. I fully plan to rock my grey. If diamonds are a girl’s best friend, red lipstick is a close second.

  14. I’m 68. You ladies have inspired me to continue on my journey to my natural color that is silver/white around my face and the rest is a mix of silver and dark. I hate the dark part. I can’t even tell what color it is with a selfie! To me it just looks like a blah color. I’m 6 months into the transition, and yesterday I was ready to have my hair colored again. I’ve gone from a natural dark blonde, going to a very pretty honey blonde with color, for many years. I’ve always had compliments on my hair. My stylist has done a weave to match the lightest hair to soften the demarcation line, and since my hair grows fast I get two inches cut every 8 weeks. My older sister who is still coloring her hair blonde is snarky about my going natural and a friend said, “you don’t want to look old!” It’s interesting how this is such an emotional transition, and it helps to read your stories.

  15. I am 43 and recently decided to go gray. I am tired of the upkeep and with covid it was hard to even get into someone. Luckily I found lady that did a fabulous job with lowlights and a toner to match my roots. Now to see how it looks once it grows out again. It is taking some getting used to since I was so blonde to begin with and this is much darker than I am used to. Hopefully it turns out well. Time will tell. The kids are 50/50 on it but my husband said he likes it. Haven’t been to work yet but when I posted pics on both Facebook and Instagram I had more likes and comments than any other picture even from people I haven’t talked to in years. I feel like if you are still younger and dress like you normally do and style it like normal it isn’t that big a deal my hair is long. Hopefully not too many negative comments when I go to work this weekend oh well if there are.

    1. Catharina Williams says:

      I am 74 and got sick of colouring my hair. Was so strange but liberating when I stopped colouring my grey blond. And now I get men looking longingly at me. Not that I want them too but it’s strange they are looking after years of looking past me. Xxxx

    2. I have had people talk to me like I’m elderly. I am 51 and my face is quite young for my age! People thought I was 35-40 before I went gray. I went into Fabricland and they asked if I had the senior’s discount ?

      1. Pamela Broadston says:

        Same here. I’m 54. A few weeks ago, I had my first question as the whether I had a senior discount. I was at the grocery store and had a mask on, of course, so basically she saw my hair and my eyes which don’t look very “old”. Poor girl. I started laughing and she was embarrassed. Once I explained her about the pandemic of going gray she thought it was cool

  16. If you’d asked me last year if I’d ever stop dying my hair, the answer would have been ‘NO, never’ but here we are. I was over the brassy colour my hair faded to after a few weeks of being coloured, so my last colour, highlights, was done in January this year and I can’t wait until they grow out. Lockdown helped as I didn’t get my hair cut for three months so wasn’t tempted to go back started colouring it again. I have a few friends that think I’m crazy, they would never do it, and that’s ok I just don’t ask them what they think. There are plenty of positive comments coming my way. I’m having a love hate relationship with my feelings on whether I like it or not but mostly love the way it’s looking. So I’m going to continue on this journey – as I said in the beginning I can always start colouring it again if I don’t like it.

    PS: Katie your hair looks lovely.

    1. This was me exactly! I hated the brassiness and having to go in to “color the color”. My last color was May 2020. Sometimes I miss my highlighted hair, but then I think about how increasingly dissatisfied I was with it and I know I’ll never go back!

  17. I’ve made my decision in aug 2017 to stop dying my hair. I’m 50 now and It was hard because I’m Filipina and I didn’t see a lot of natural gray hair images in Asian woman . So I was scared to make the leap but as the months went by I stArted getting more curious and it’s May 2020 and haven’t regret my decision. Yes I received compliments. Encouragement . Criticism , throughout my process and each negative and positive comment made me feel confident about my decision. some people even think I dyed my hair gray or got highlights. I’m not completely gray. I say 50/50. More power to all that make the ditching dye decision. Regardless, it’s our hair and if we love our hair who cares about what others think It’s empowering!

  18. Catherine says:

    Ok – I’m gonna do it !
    All of your posts have encouraged me!
    This is a good time to start since the salon is closed due to Covid-19.
    I’m going to be checking back in as I figure out how this is all going to go down!

    1. Wonderful, Catherine! You’ll be surprised how freaking fun this process is. I swear, I enjoyed every minute of it (even though I’d been taught to dread going gray my whole life!).

    2. Well since the lockdown it’s been 2 months since I colored my hair. I have been battling with decision to let it go as I say for the past several week. I used to color my hair with box black and got really tired of it. So two years ago I started thinking about letting it go. I ended up go lighter to brown. When it first done I love it. But less than three weeks I start using that awful spray. I hate that stuff. I’m not afraid of my gray I just wish it was all over and I didn’t have to deal with the grow out. But I’m thinking now with the growth I have it’d be almost a waste to not let it go at this point. I’d hate to have start all over again down the road. Your article was truly in powering. It’s awesome to see the point of embracing it. Mostly you just hear about how to make all gray during the grow out phase. After all the trouble, time, and money it took me to go from black I really don’t want to go through that either. You have inspired me to look at this as empowering and to embrace it.

      1. I’m so glad to hear that, Amy! I found it an incredibly empowering experience. Good luck!

      2. I’m right where you are at Amy. Last hair color the end of January. I’m half way there. I may add some kind of highlights to get me through the next few months. Or stay at home another couple months! It’s like being pregnant–you have to finish what you started. It’s like quitting smoking–don’t ever go back or you’ll have to start all over again. So viva la gray, here I come.

        1. Elizabeth says:

          Me too! January was my last box dye and I have about 3+ inches of roots. I have gone back and forth and cannot imagine having it dyed now! It’s a journey and I am trying to embrace it!

      3. Hi Katie, I just turned 75 years young and retired last October. I have colored my hair most if my adult life. Greys starting showing up in in late 40’s. I had the hair stylist who has been doing my hair for the past 6 years tell me I would not be able to pull it off. So she lost a good client. My hair was last colored in February. Its been easy during this stay home stay safe time. It changes daily. I live in Florida and looking forward to not having to worry about hair color when I decide to take a swim.

        1. Wonderful, Diane! You are going to love it! It’s such a relief to be done with coloring. One note – when you swim you do have to watch out for the chlorine a bit but it’s easily taken care of. Check out my Yellowing Gray Hair article for tips on how to protect your hair from chlorine. Have a great week!

          1. Hi Katie,
            I am turning 65 this month and decided to go gray! The only problem I have is that I use a flat iron every day because I have thick curly hair and I am afraid that my hair will yellow. Any magic tricks?

          2. Hi, Monique – is your hair coarse or fine? If it’s fairly coarse you may not have to worry about yellowing as much as I do (I have fine hair and it yellows at the touch of any heat). Make sure you wear heat protectant and have a flat iron that can go as LOW as possible. But even with that, there’s STILL a chance that your hair might yellow. So then ask yourself, does yellowing even bother you? Do you want to let it dictate how you style your hair? If it doesn’t bother you, then don’t worry about it and just enjoy your hair the way YOU want to!

            I have been battling the yellow since I let my hair go gray – I live in Southern California (TONS of sun) and I prefer my hair straighter, too. I am fairly sick of the battle, so now I try to not let it get to me. I do what i can to prevent my hair from yellowing (within reason) but don’t let it rule my life. Part of the reason many of us go gray is to simplify our hair care routine, and it didn’t feel simple to me to go through the daily battle. Hope that helps!

    3. At 69 I had enough dying the hair. Let my roots grow for two months and cut it off down to 2 fingers in September 2019. Then Covid came along and I could see a stylist for 4 months. I’m pretty good with scarves and I wasn’t goin out much anyway. By June 2020 I had a Mullet/ shag thing. Plan in a ear length stacked bob. So Farr so good. No residual color. My front is silver white the rest salt and pepper. I’m pretty happy. Committed to no more dye. Maybe a temporary pink purple or blue streak but that’s all

  19. I’m 16 months into the process and almost done. It’s a lot whiter than I thought it would be on top so I’m tempted to add just a few wee lowlights there to give it some depth, and because my skin has paled at the same time as my hair it can make me look a tad washed out. But anyway, that aside, I LOVE. love, love my grey hair. It feels very subversive too, which appeals to my rebellious nature 🙂

    I get the “brave” comment a lot. And I feel some people just quietly disapprove… Or are disappointed in me… Like I’ve somehow let the side down. Who cares?

    1. AtlantaBabs says:

      My son who turned out to be a 50 year old brat told me he can’t look at me. My answer, “Tough!”

  20. I had a high school student tell me that he loved the color I dyed my hair and then argue with me when I told him it was my natural color. “Your hair sparkles and gray hair doesn’t do that!” He insisted there was no way my hair color was real.

    1. Wow! I hope the fact that more women are letting their hair go naturally gray will disabuse people of that notion.

    2. So, I’m 63 now. Was a honey blonde when I was a kid. Went lighter in high school. After marriage and the baby, started coloring more frequently. I’ve always been a risk-taker, so going au natural finally doesn’t faze me a bit. I’ve always been a horse of a different color! Lol! Wish me luck!

  21. Jen Gilles says:

    After treatment for breast cancer (aged 46) I lost all my hair. As it re-grew I had my normal arsenal of colour ready for my hairdresser friend ready to recolour. As it grew, I was just happy to have hair again and decided to not bother. Best decision ever. At aged 60 my hair is now iron grey with white stripes at the temples. Very happy. Have had many hairdressers (and friends) tell me that people would pay to have this look. My eyebrows and eye lashes are still dark, and I think I look distinctive, not old. It’s a state of mind and if you don’t act ‘old’, I don’t think you seem ‘old’.

    1. Bette Boston says:

      I’m letting my silver come through im tired of the every 3 wks color time im ok with this beautiful white hair .it’s been 6 months.l work @ a prestigious Spa I’m an esthetician I’ve seen a lot of other women that have come in to have their facials done doing the same thing that I’m doing letting their silver shine through proudly.. gives you more money to do a facial and a massage. I’ve had many compliments. The only time anybody ever says anything is when I walked by the salon where I work they say you must come in here and cover that gray.
      Well that’s not going to happen. So ladies it’s not only the men that look beautiful with silver hair so do the women do what you want. It’s all about that beautiful smile that you’re going to be wearing. Bette b

    2. I’ve recently embarked on my personal going gray journey. Last time I had it colored was in February. I’ve been coloring my hair since I was 17, I am 54 now. Lots of years of abuse. My friends and family are all very supportive and we are all anxious to see my true color.
      I have already met with opposition. “What have you done to your hair?”. “Why would you want it all gray?”. The way I look at, of you don’t like it…don’t look at it!
      I feel empowered and most days confident. Thank you for this forum. I know I have many Silver Sisters

    3. Hello Jen,
      I also battled breast cancer last year, and lost all my hair. I was blonde as a teenager, but darkened as I got older, I always had blonde tips, & had hardly any grey. (I am nearly 70).
      My hair has grown back curly (it was never curly), & quite dark with silver at the front and temples, & a few strands of grey over the rest.
      I don’t love it yet, but I’m getting used to it, as it is getting some length. I don’t think I’ll go back to tips either…..
      Good luck to you, & hope you stay well.
      Regards Sue

      1. Sue, I lost my hair with chemo too (second time). It has come in curly and gray. I expected the curly, but did not expect the gray. I hate it. It makes me feel old. I’m 59, but most people thought that I was younger until this gray hair came in. I am thankful to have healthy hair, but I’m at a loss as to what I should do with my hair. I have had many people tell me that they love it, but when I ask them if they would do it they always tell me no. Ugh!

  22. When I saw a slightly younger cousin at a family reunion who had let her hair go gray, I realized that I was over trying to touch up my roots three weeks into expensive color. From that point, my stylist stopped pulling color through and only touched up the roots, going a bit lighter each time. Last week, after seven months, he lifted the color and now my hair is silver with ashy overtones and we’ll continue to work with it as the gray grows out to make the transition easier for me (I know I’m not patient and “strong” enough to deal with a red/gray demarcation line). I love it! And even better, my husband (who rarely has commented on my hair during 40+ years of marriage) really thinks it is flattering and loves it.

    Here’s my totally unexpected story: we were at the grocery two days later and a very old gentleman came up and said, “You’re just the woman I’m looking for – where are the prunes located?” My husband and I have been laughing about it ever since.

    1. OMG. that story is hilarious! And I’m so glad your husband is supportive – it makes a world of difference!

  23. Hi Katie,
    I tried to go gray about a year ago, made it to 4 mos. Unfortunately, I looked at myself and thought, my god, your hair makes you look so old, with a mix of salt/pepper at the top and dark black hair for the rest. It was not pretty or inspiring. I caved and started dying my roots again with a more “natural” hair color. So now, I need to touch up every month or so and I’m so sick and tired of it. When I put my hair up, the gray roots are very obvious and makes it look like my hair is thinning because of the contrast between the dark hair. I’m a cancer x2 survivor and I know putting anything on my scalp that is going to color my hair is probably not good.

    I’m going to try again, but not cave again to my vanity. Or my husband’s comments… He prefers me looking 30 years younger than I am. I’m 65! He dyes his hair as well. I’m going to be myself and be proud that I survived this journey, hopefully in another year and a half.

    BTW, I have an Aspie son too. That’s another challenge that was far more difficult and I survived that. He’s now 24 and has a full-time job as a sw programmer, living in his own apt. When he was growing up and in high school, I seriously doubted if he would ever be able to live on his own. But if given the chance, I wouldn’t change my circumstances for anything. I learned so much from going through those bad times.

    Thanks for your website and the support from all the other ladies going through this.

    1. Good luck, Nancy! You can do it! And thanks for the great update about your son. It gives me hope. My son matures a lot all the time, so I am crossing my fingers that he will live on his own someday like yours does. That’s great!

  24. Good to know I’m not the only one who admires her going grey/gray hair. No one has told me I’m brave, yet. I am loving my hair now. Some women pay lots of money for silver hair, and I get mine for free!!

  25. J Gregory says:

    Your post is spot on! I’m terrified someone will see all the selfies on my phone and think me vain. And my grandson was the only person who said anything when I stopped dying my hair. He was afraid I would look like ‘Grandma’ any more, bless his heart!

    What I hoped you would mention are these frizzy sideburns some of us get. I thought they would calm down when I was fully transitioned, but, alas, no. Anyone else?

    1. Yes, I have the frizzy sideburns too!! I’m only 3 months into this and was seriously hoping they would relax sooner than later…

      1. Jacqui Bradshaw says:

        Having recently ditched the dye, I can honestly say that I love my grey hair and judging by the many comments I get so do others! What I hadn’t expected though was how much I am loving reinventing my wardrobe and make up regime. Gone are the dowdy safe colours as I now see that the rich jewel colours and bright lipsticks are so much more flattering. I am now confident and comfortable standing out from the crowd, and finding that the more I do so, the more compliments I get, the more I now want to continue down this route!

    2. Della Justice says:

      OMG, I thought I was the only person in the world with the frizzy sideburns. I looked like I had 2 white bunny tails on each side of my face. I trimmed the frizzy down to a manageable length and it’s not so obvious now. It may look a little weird?? but it makes me feel better not to fight with with the bunny tails every day ?

  26. I have been thinking about going gray for some time now, but I have very fine hair and when the roots come in my hair looks very thin on the top front. This is what has been stopping me. has anyone else experienced this and still gone forward with the transition? Any comments or suggestions would be appreciated.

    1. My hair looks thinner top/front, too. I like wearing a headband, fluffing up the crown and pulling small curls forward to soften my face. Good luck!

    2. I noticed the same thing when I first started growing out my gray, but I read somewhere (sorry, i forget where) that this is just an illusion created by the darker demarcation of the dye line. Turns out this is true; now that I’m about 6 months into growing out the gray, it no longer looks thin. 🙂

      1. Hi, Brigitte: Agreed! I thought i was losing hair, too, when I ditched the dye, but it was definitely an optical illusion. A lot of women have told me that they had the same experience.

  27. I’m 51 and just starting the “going gray” process. My roots are 1/2 – 1 inch, and I have short hair. So, I’m hoping the process won’t take too long. My only concern is having the gray roots and the rest of my hair is dark with highlights. Should I get lighter highlights to calm the “bad roots?” I’m afraid I’ll get half way through and say, “it’s not worth it.” What’s your suggestion? Thanks for any help you can give me.

    1. Hi,Tammy:

      If your hair is short, it shouldn’t take too long (2-3 months?). Check out these transition stories for inspiration for going gray with short hair:
      Lori Dawnloyn and Alison’s Silver Pixie. They have a lot of great ideas about how to get through it quickly.

      It’s up to you on the highlights – I had very dark hair and had bad luck in the past trying to lighten it (it would just turn orange, and get damaged), so I opted to go gray cold turkey and found out to my surprise that I didn’t mind the roots! But if they bother you, try to find a good salon in your area that has experience with helping people transition to gray with salon processes.

      Also, check out my Gray-Friendly Salon Directory, as these are salons recommended by our fellow silver sisters. If you don’t have any in your area, try to find an Aveda salon as they are usually gray-friendly.

      If you decide to go cold turkey and the roots drive you crazy, a lot of women opt for scarves, hats, wigs or Wow Root Powder. Good luck!

    2. I would suggest getting prepared to go grey by having a lighter and lighter dye for a year or so. I only did six months but I have short hair. Then get some highlights put through your hair and stop colouring altogether. Then just let your natural grey grow out.

    3. I had a very strong demarkation line which I could no longer stand at around the three month grow out point. I went to a very good salon and got them to bleach some of the colour out so it wasn’t so harsh a line. It actually helped a lot and made the rest of the grow out easier. I only did it the once and used olaplex number 3 weekly to keep it from drying out. That worked very well. And the colour looked pretty good. Other people really liked it a lot. Now it’s all gone 🙂

  28. I colored, bleached, highlighted and covered roots through most of my 50’s. I turned 59 and made a conscious decision to just stop. I finally cut out the last of my “fake” color and have embraced whatever this new sparkly natural tint is. I’ve received more compliments on my hair in the last six months than my entire previous decade put together. I’m so happy with being the real me!!!

  29. I’ve had gray hair (actually more white in the front and a kind of champagne in the back where it’s a mix of faded red, light brown and white) for a few years now and while I think it’s pretty okay looking and I’ve gotten compliments on it, there are no men following me around 🙂 The first weird thing I noticed was the shock of seeing myself in a mirror. I had had pretty red hair all my life and suddenly had no idea who the white-haired woman in the mirror was. I’m still adjusting. The second weird thing was all the grocery checkout clerks started asking if the bags were too heavy or I needed help getting them to my car. It’s sort of sweet and also amuses me.

    1. Eight weeks (about 1 inch) in and I love it! I’m pulling my hair back now so the underhair shines through. But I find it funny that NO ONE will talk about it. Kind of that “Is she pregnant” phase, I guess. 58 years old and my roots are probably 90% white. I’m so excited to watch the progress! My only serious worry is my mom (who has Alzheimers) may lose recognition of me sooner.

  30. I went cold turkey four years ago after my last trip for a cut and color went up to $235. It took about two years and a new stylist to work with me for frequent trims. But now the transition is complete and I love my hair. I’ve had some type of color on my hair since I was 15 and I’m 56. It is so much healthier and I get loads of compliments. Many think I have had my hair highlighted. Best decision I’ve ever made.

    1. That’s wonderful, Raelyn! So glad to hear that.

      1. I’m 57 and stopped coloring my hair probably around 3 years ago. I have had someone ask me if it was natural and I say yes and they say it looks so good. Another lady around my age walked up to me in the supermarket and said she loved my hair, and that she was transitioning to gray also. Like you said in your article it seems like the younger generation really like it also. I have had compliments from strangers, one a teenager and on another occasion a little girl probably around 8 years old that have said they love my hair and that I was pretty. I am an introverted person and am always surprised when I receive a compliment. I have to say that I don’t regret ditching the dye, it’s one of the best decisions I have made!

        1. I feel the same way, Jackie! In fact, I wish I’d done it sooner. So glad you’ve had a great experience.

  31. I get the brave comment a lot! And it’s true that the tone in which it’s said doesn’t match the meaning comment. LOL!
    The thing is I colores my hair A LOT in my twenties just for fun. My hair was my canvas. It weaned in my late thirties.
    Now that my grays started to show I just feel in love with them. I never felt the urge, or need to color and hide them. I love my grays as the natural process of aging. I feel beautiful as the 45 year old woman I am, I feel young as the 45 year old woman I am. I don’t need to look younger, I can be a beautiful woman at any age. Thanks for sharing your gray story.

    1. You’re welcome! You have a great attitude, which makes it all so much easier!

  32. I just started this process last month. After many years of dark brown box coloring I was exhausted. It had become another chore , in a list of many, and dreaded the touch ups every 3 weeks. My hair has had a grey patch since I was 17 and I’ve been coloring it since then. I just turned 48 and think it’s time to do something I want to do. My kids , 15 and 12, are beyond embarrassed with my tricolored head as I get the box color on the bottom, my real color and then the skunk line of grey. I’m hoping I can stick with it as looking in the mirror can be a struggle at the moment.

    1. Linda G! You can do this! Baseball caps are fantastic for the temporary tricolor hair & never forget the power of the messy bun! It takes time- there will be days you might doubt, but if you stick with it- it’s worth every bit of the agonizing growth period. I’m 38! Started graying at 20. Stopped coloring about 2.5 years ago. Full steam ahead. So much healthier for you hair and pocket book. Keep it up! You can do this. My 11,12, & 13 year old children think it’s pretty cool now.

  33. I decided to let my almost 100% silver/white hair grow out about 17 years ago. I was a brunette with red highlights in my younger years and had been dying my hair with permanent and temporary dark brown from about age 35. The colorist at my salon bleached my hair and did an all over medium blond in a semi-permanent shade. She then did highlights and lowlights ($$$). I had so many colors going on I dreaded going to work the following Monday. After about 9 months and two more salon foil visits, my short bob was almost completely white (the top of my head was pure white and the longer hair covered the silver in back) plus the condition of my hair had finally recovered. I had accepted the look at age 53 until my 3 year old granddaughter started crying one day and said “I don’t want you to die”. She said it was because of my white hair. She had recently lost a grandparent on her dad’s side of the family. About the same time I decided to change jobs and made the decision to put a temporary blond color in. I always looked young for my age and I hoped that this would take years off my looks. I got the job, but doubt the blond was the reason. Since then I have maintained a medium to dark blond but have had to do root touch ups every 2 to 3 weeks. Three months ago I said “I’m done with this, a 70 year old woman deserves to let her natural color show”. I found a photo from when my hair had grown out and I was surprised to see how young I did look at 53 with gray/white hair! I decided not to do the salon thing this time and it is not looking great coming in, but since I am retired now I can deal with it. In the summer months I wear a lot of visors to protect my skin from the sun and it helps to hide the transition line. I am leaving my short bob the same length to avoid an even more dramatic change in how I look.
    It is so encouraging to read this blog and all the comments from everyone. Thank you.

    1. Lindy, I’m so glad you found the blog and are loving the encouragement!

  34. I transitioned to gray over about a year and am so glad I did. It was exciting to keep getting layered trims just to see my progress! My first moment of liberation was when I was fully grown out, on an outing at a very windy park, and realizing I did not have to worry about my roots being exposed!!! Sounds wierd, but boy did that feel great. I catch myself looking into mirrors and windows when I go by and thinking, omg I am white! It is an emotional phase of life when you no longer look as young as you once did, but you have to be determined and ready to embrace it and move forward. It’s a good thing 🙂

      1. Toni Marie says:

        You are 100 % right I decided to let my hair grow out Nov 2018. I’ll ever forget looking in the mirror and seeing a washed out color that my hair turned and that was it….No more color ever. I greyed early also and I can’t tell you how much I love it. I think most women will know when it’s time to be natural again. I get more compliments and I myself feel better.

        1. That’s wonderful, Toni! Isn’t it nice to be done with all that?!

        2. Hair dye began to cause my scalp to itch and burn. Also, the cost was becoming ridiculous! So about 10 years ago at age 56 I welcomed the grey and silver in and never looked back. I love it! I get a lot of compliments on my silver hair and I correct them by saying, “Nope, it’s tinsel!”

  35. Oh my gosh! So glad to read all the relatable stories here. My first foray into going grey ended after 2 months when my granddaughter put her tiny hands on my cheeks and with tears rolling from big brown eyes said “oh my mamas whatever I do now you’re dying so soon?” When I asked what she meant she sobbed out first you get old then you get white hair and then you die. She was inconsolable; she had lost 2 great grandparents just the month before. Honey I was at the salon next morning. (She is now 22)
    So several months ago I decided I was ready and now was a great time since youngsters are getting their hair done grey/ silver. But I didn’t do the cold turkey grow out, I’m too vain I think. My stylist and I came up with a plan and in 6 months it was time to cut it into a bob (my choice to get rid of last of old dyed hair). I love it and so does my family.

    1. Oh, that story about your granddaughter! What a sweetie, and ( completely understand why you ran to the salon.
      So glad you are happy with your silvers now!

  36. Penny McCracken says:

    I was with my 19 year old son who suffers from Asperger’s in his therapist’s office waiting and he very loudly asked me if I forgot to die. I was startled and said what? He said again, very loudly “Did you forget to die?” I asked him what he was talking about and he said “Your hair. Did you forget to dye your hair?” I could hear the therapist on the other side of the door trying not to laugh out loud. I told him no that I was growing it out. He said “Oh. You look like Cruella Deville.” I was about ready to ask him if he was ready to die but the therapist came in the room then and he was saved. Later we had a conversation and I explained what I was doing and why.

    1. Penny, you made me laugh! My son has Asperger’s too, and so I can totally relate to this ?. My son called me a “silver-haired nutcase” the other day, which was a good sign that he has finally accepted that I’m not going back to dyeing my hair.

  37. …I started getting gray in my late 30’s but I knew I was going to let it go….loved my grandfathers and my dads…..not only is my gray a conversation piece so is the length……..so I too am taking photos…..not only for the gray but for the length….it was very short and is now to my waist….and I have waves!!!……I just turned 64 and there seems to be a lot of discussion on being gray and long …… the front and sides are mostly white…..just wondering if others are letting theirs go long as well as white….

    1. Sounds beautiful, Peggy! I love long gray hair! Check out some of the Silver Hair Transition Stories here and you’ll see plenty of women with long hair. Sherry’s hair is especially long, thick & fabulous!

    2. Penny McCracken says:

      Hey Peggy, I am in the process of growing out the dreaded pixie cut, but I do plan on growing out my hair and wearing it longer. I’m not sure how long I will let it grow but probably at least shoulder length which is longer than I have worn it since I was in my 30’s. It will depend on how healthy it looks at that length.

    3. I too have left my hair longer and let it go – with lots of waves and curls. White on top and sides, darker is only in back mostly, but when wet you can still see the darker strands. I just turned 62 and just found this blog today. Glad to find a ‘twin’ 🙂 I had dyed my hair auburn for years and just let it go.. my husband twisted my arm! Every time I get complimented – which is OFTEN – he says: your welcome LOL! I do find silver earrings look much nicer than my former gold though… I didn’t plan on it… but realized after I told him I’d stop… that I had last dyed my hair on our 33rd wedding anniversary – 3 1/2 years ago. So far, I’ve had 3 dreams I dyed it back and was soooo upset in the dream… after all the time growing it out… thankfully, I woke up 🙂

  38. Patricia Timbrook says:

    Thank you so much. I was drinking my morning coffee and read your delightful article. I was laughing my head off. Totally agreeing with everything you wrote.
    Yes, I made the switch to grow out my hair. I ‘m 63 years young and loving my sassy new silver, gray, white hair.

    1. Thanks, Patricia! ????

      So glad you liked it! Your hair sounds fabulous, by the way.

  39. I made the decision to stop coloring when my husband’s career provided an opportunity to relocate to a new area. The transition from dark brown to silver was aided by my colorist who did two different processes….first one to bleach out some of the color to look like highlights…then six weeks later to do a second process of coloring the highlights with silver toned color. I also did a pixie haircut so that the transition time would be on less hair and less damage. It’s taken 16 months to grow it out to a long bob and nearly all colored hair is gone. Hubby was exceptionally supportive throughout and loves my now mostly silver hair. I do get stopped by strangers and complimented frequently. The downside was the search for a new job in our new community where I felt that having gray hair has been a detriment…though I landed a great one; ageism is real in the job market. Personally I feel very comfortable in my choice; but it’s still a shocker to those who haven’t seen me for a while. I love that colored hair spray (by L’Oréal) allows me to go pink or blue or purple for the day (mermaid or unicorn looks are so easy with silver Hair) and then I can just wash it out and be back to my professional look. I truly wish I’d done the transition sooner!

    1. Deb, your hair sounds fabulous! I hate the ageism surrounding gray hair. If nobody dyed their hair, we’d see that people of all ages (from 13 to 115) can have gray hair. So frustrating. I hope that will change. So glad you had a great transition experience!

      1. Went gray the minute I retired from teaching. Did it with the help of my hair dresser doing a short cut with highlights. Followed by three more short cuts. Absolutely painless and looked great all the time. Would never go back to dyeing it. Wearing it long and it is soft with lots of body and curls. Would have done it sooner had I realized how great it would look. LOVE IT!

    2. Debera Bragg says:

      Deb .. our stories are very similar. I moved to a new area, had lightening treatments to finish out my gray look and constantly get compliments when I’m out… Ladies will come up to me in the grocery and say I love your hair. It always takes me by surprise as I wore wigs for a while and my hair has always been a little difficult.. my husband tells me everyday how much he likes my gray hair… It makes aging a little easier 🙂

  40. great article.
    been dye free for 1.5 years now…love it.

  41. I’m 38 and I just feel like I’ve had it with all the toxic chem. we are all so used to casually putting in or on our bodies. I’m trying to be more honest with myself and who I really am, and the things that really matter to me. I just said “why am I doing this to myself?” and decided to stop. I pretty much forgot about it and one day looked in the mirror and thought I was balding! lol I realized that it only appeared that way because of the staggering amount of gray roots! the right side of my head, at the temple is practically ALL gray. it’s going to look really cool once it’s all grown out. YAY GRAY!

    1. Yes, yay gray! I also thought I was balding – it happens to a lot of us, and it’s such a relief that it’s just gray hair! I agree with you re: the chemicals. I was so careful about eating well and trying to use nontoxic cleaning products, but I was dumping loads of harmful chemicals onto my scalp every month. What was I thinking?

      1. Home 11 months to Stay Safe from Cornavirus….totally now at 83 totally gray. Only ones thst do not like it are ones too vain to go gray. I did see some bald area and after lots of research found Wal-Mart by SEVICH has White Scalp Concelar. Read to use white baby powder….what a mess. Plan to order this product and not sure if in stores. I had spraysto cover gray and hard to find spray for gray hair… this is a powder. Hope it works!

  42. Stephanie says:

    Hi! About 9 months ago, I had my stylist heavily foil out my very dark brown hair. That made me blonde-ish. Since then, I have been letting my natural color grow out. Fortunately, I’m very gray and am so happy that I made this decision. The one thing I learned is that if you go blonde via chemicals, you must be diligent and use a purple shampoo. Otherwise, it will turn a very ugly, brassy yellow color. I still use the purple shampoo often to brighten up my gray hair. It’s nice to not spend a fortune at the salon now!

    1. Hi, Stephanie:

      Agreed! I love not spending the money OR time at the salon anymore! It was getting so expensive, and so frequent (for me). Now I treat myself occasionally to an eyebrow treatment at ULTA or a pedicure. So much cheaper and you feel great afterward!

    2. I have decided to let me hair “go home” and I love it!! Mine is coming in along the fronts and sides a beautiful silver colour. I moved to Victoria, BC 2 years ago and was so jealous of all the beautiful white, silver and grey haired women here. Beautiful and natural!!!

  43. Hannah Suckle says:

    I’m 5 months in. I’m not a selfie taker so I’m probably not going to be documenting it that way. I’ve been planning to do stop dyeing for years but a missed 8 week root appointment that fell into 10 weeks just cemented it. My colorist (who is wonderful) was not pleased but has been supportive.

    I’ve only had one question, from my great nephew, who wanted to know why I had so many different colors of hair (my dyed brown has purple ends) and I said “because I like it”. I think he was prompted by his grandfather (my brother) who is too much of a chicken to ask himself.

    1. 5 months into gray transition. My friends 8 yr old asked why I color my hair gray? I replied because I like it and she seemed ok with the response lol. So far I have silver highlights coming in throughout the back and two patches running down the front sise of my face. Coworkers are complimenting my new look. I am still contemplating how long or if I will continue with this new look. Also cut my hair to a shoulder length & debating if I should go shorter.

  44. I stopped dying/cutting my my hair two years ago. I love the way my brown/gray hair looks. I’m now ready to cut off three inches of the old dyed hair. I feel more beautiful and confident now than with the dyed hair.

    1. That’s wonderful, Brigitte! I’m sure it will feel great to get rid of that old dye!

  45. Catherine says:

    Have really enjoyed your blog and the transition stories! My last dye was 7 months ago and it feels like it’s going sooooo slow! I so relate to this post. I’ve become obsessed with my hair where I used to dry in the morning and forget about until bedtime. I bought a hand mirror JUST so I can check out the back of my head! And I’m constantly checking out the undergrowth. Thanks for keeping me motivated!

    1. Hi, Catherine – you sound just like me! I think I’m going to have to rush out and buy a hand mirror as I need to see the back of my head more now! I’m so glad you love the blog and that it keeps you motivated!

  46. Only starting, October 27, 2018 was the last time I colored my hair. Your article is wonderful, it’s made me more exciting. I want to see what it looks like on the first day of Spring March 20, 2019. I want to embrace my journey as I turn 66 in January.

    1. Thanks, Lupe! I’m so glad you enjoyed the article. Good luck with your transition!

  47. This article is spot on. I’m 47 and decided this past April to stop coloring my hair. I had been highlighting and coloring my hair since I was 13 years old – 34 years! In the past couple of months I’ve really been getting a lot of compliments on my hair. Most people think I paid for these natural highlights. Only now has my husband starting commenting on how much he loves my hair color, and with no prompting from me! I love the way it looks too. I’m rocking my silver highlights and it makes me feel like a rebel not coloring my hair anymore.

    1. So glad it’s going so well for you! I feel the same way – it’s nice to go back to feeling like a rebel! I missed that feeling. 🙂

  48. I’m 63 and started the selfies to record the transition to gray and I found it embarrassing too that I had so many (10 months worth). Most people have been very complimentary of my new color. I transitioned from brunette to gray with blonde highlights, which made it so much easier. People really do say stupid things to you about the new you. My friend told me that my gray wasn’t ugly. I think it was supposed to be a compliment. I really like my hair without the dye. I have about an inch to go and can’t wait for it to be gone forever. Best hair decision I ever made.

  49. Love what you say in your article. So very true. My experience exactly. I am 59 and have been embracing my grey for 18 months. It is still a work in progress and I am fascinated watching the colour progress.

  50. My roots always grew out really quickly, within 2 weeks. I hated going for touch-ups so I usually wouldn’t go to the salon until it was very grown-out. Then my mom took ill, and eventually passed away. I was in FL for 3 weeks, and when I came home I felt raw and changed … more myself. My mom’s hair was a beautiful shade of silver. I’d long thought about letting myself go gray “someday”, and at this point thought, “what am I waiting for? If not now, when? I’m already 54.” So I kept going. I heard all the comments you’re describing, and still hear them. But once I’d made the decision, I already felt I was gray in my mind’s eye. The rest was a foregone conclusion.

    1. I’m so sorry for the loss of your Mom. It’s a nice tribute to her that you admired her hair color and let yours go gray as well!

  51. I was never complimented on my hair by strangers until I went gray. There is a lot of various shades and even my brother-in-law was surprised it was natural.

    1. That’s great! it’s always astounding when we realize the true beauty of gray hair. It’s really unique.

  52. I ditched the dye over 5 years ago and my hair is barely 10% gray and I’m 61! I’m waiting for my beautiful silver locks, but I just look like a hag.

  53. I’ve just come across your Instagram and headed over here. I’m 38 with a 3 week old baby and another two under 5…I’m seriously considering going grey. I’ve not dyed my hair throughout pregnancy because of an increased sensitivity so I have a good ‘rootage’. I’m blonde so I’m riding the silver blonde craze at the moment using toning purple shampoo…the big question is do I continue? Still undecided.

    1. Hi, Emma – Congratulations on your new baby! It seems (from what I’ve seen) that gray is easier to grow out from blonde or light red hair because there’s not the stark contrast that you get with brunette hair. Whatever you decide will be the right decision for you! But it might be fun to try it for a while and see how it goes. Some women use Color Wow Root Powder (or other products) to get through the first months of the transition. Good luck!

  54. This was 150% spot on for me and had me giggling and nodding my head throughout! The selfies? Omg yes! The comments people make, definitely! And even my kids….they haven’t mentioned mortality but my kids only know me with dark brown/black hair and it is hard for them to think of mommy any different.

    Love your blog!

    1. I’m so glad you could relate! 🙂 Thanks for the kind words!

  55. Deb Commesso says:

    My daughter, also Autistic, had identical fears! It took plenty of reassurance but now SHE is the one delighted by all the sparkly white when the sunlight hits it! Thanks for an entertaining and encouraging read! Xoxoxo

    1. I’m so glad that she is delighted – it really IS pretty!

  56. Sandrine (Grey_so_what) says:

    I laughed a lot when I read you… So true !!! All the sections !!!

  57. I actually forget about my gray until someone mentions it. Then it’s a discussion. I think it’s fascinating, watching the transition from black to black and white hair. I’ve been called Cruella, jokingly. My sister told me to pull my hair up and I’d be the Bride of Frankenstein for Halloween. All in fun though, not minding the laughs. Enjoying this journey.

    1. It’s always good to have a sense of humor, for sure! I think a lot of us dark brunettes can relate to Cruella DeVille’s hair at times ?

  58. Terry Son says:

    It was a fun read, Katie! Both informative and light at the same time!

  59. Joyce Eveler says:

    Great read! I’ve always been told I look to young to be a grandma, and look like a sister to my daughters. Both daughters are hair stylists, and initially one was supportive (she’s the one that does my hair and really knows how much grey/white I have) but the other was very opposed. But I think she was more opposed to me aging than anything. It’s more fun to have a mom that’s looks like a sister than a mom that’s really 55 and is exhausted after a full day with the grand babies ?? LOL. She’s supporting me now, but still doesn’t understand why I would want to look “old”. Age and wisdom will catch up with her ?

    1. Hi, Joyce: I agree – she’ll realize the wisdom in accepting your grays at some point! I think you’re setting a great example for your daughters. How fun to have grandbabies – I hope I get some, too, someday!

  60. Nice article! I am still not confident with growing out my hair but I’m doing it. For job interviews it is not the best, so I may have to color my hair again. There is ageism in the workforce. I was never good at coloring my hair on a regular basis so most of the time I had gray roots showing so I figured I would just stop dyeing it all together. A lot of friends think that I am trying to save money but that is not the reason I am doing it.

    1. Hi, Jill – Have you looked into root powder to temporarily cover your grays? You can find a link to it on my gray hair products page and also in Louise Pendry’s transition story article. A lot of women use that to get through job interviews. It’s frustrating when people don’t understand our real motivations for going gray, but just stick to your guns and do what’s best for you!

  61. Great article!! Really made me smile and reminded me how fun this all is. I’m often having to hide my camera roll because it’s so full of hair shots!! Haha. What’s most weird for me is my new found self belief. I feel my most secure and attractive ever since I stopped dying. It’s really counter intuitive but a fantastic bonus. ?. Thanks for keeping writing and posting Katie. You’re fab!!! ❤️❤️❤️

    1. Thanks, Emma! So glad you enjoyed it. I’m continually amazed by how many of us have the same experience – increased self-confidence and security after choosing to ditch the dye. I never would have guessed that in a million years!

  62. This was a hoot! I relate!

  63. I recently ,told my daughter I needed a t-shirt that says, My eyes are somewhere between the top of my head and my chest?

  64. Joanne L Cook says:

    Loved the read, although one thing zi do not take selfies. I’m not at the point where I rhink I look good. Hopefully someday

    1. You’ll have fun when you get to that point. It takes a while ??

  65. Brilliant article that confirms I am not weird at all. It’s people like you, Katie, who have made my own journey easier. And suddenly I am more confident than I ever have been. If you had told my old brunette self that going grey would empower her she would have died laughing.


    1. Hi, Claire! I agree – I feel more confident in the past 8 months than I have in a while. Such a surprise that gray hair is the cause!

  66. amy nolan says:

    This was so much fun to read and fascinating!

  67. For the record, a lot of those new male followers we’ve all suddenly gotten since waving our gray flag are bots. Not real men! But! The real men in my life have been extremely supportive and encouraging which is better than followers any day! ?

    1. I know there are a lot of bots, but I’ve been getting a ton of messages from real men, too. Which i’d definitely rather NOT receive! But yet, the real men have been so supportive! Which is a nice side effect 🙂

  68. Meena Mahesh says:

    Spot on …u have just said it as it is…?

    1. I am only now getting first grays in front at 61. I have less than 1%. However despite the fact that I hated my natural mousy colour and coloured my hair blonde for most of my life I do not like the look of these first grays as I feel they make my already very fine hair look even finer. So the texture is not a good look and makes me feel old although my skin is unlined.
      I am just going to put a very mild blonde colour over the front as I can no longer use chemical dyes due to skin allergy over the rest of the hair and have had to go darker from mid blonde to mouse towards tbe back as Now have no choice sadly.
      I have not had any of the fun going gray of my friend who is entirely silver and looks platinum blonde now with amazing texture
      So going gray is not at all glamorous for me! Only advantage is I need much less bleach to lift slightly gray roots and it blends in better with my natural darker hair. Lucky You all the ladies who find gray really works for them.

  69. Brilliant Katie! I too have a son with high functioning (mild) Aspergers and have had the mortality discussion. The time it’s going to take to transition will be adjustment for not only me but my children too. Great posts , love reading them!

    1. Thank you, Portia! I’ve heard this from other mothers of special-needs kids, too. Adapting to change is often hard for them, so it’s so good to have these discussions. xoxoxo

  70. This is spot on hysterical!! Every word I feel! Thanks for actually writing it down! Now I feel a bit more normal, Katie xxooo

  71. Jane Patsakos says:

    I just love this article! I could read it over and over! I haven’t taken the leap yet, so this was all news to me! Fascinating!!

  72. Katie!!! This is an awesome post!! Yes!!! I’ve experienced all of this. Thanks for putting it down so clearly. I’m cracking up at the selfie thing. LOL! I was starting to feel a little bad about it. hahaha! It’s like I must take a pic in different lights just to see the colors.

    1. I do the same thing, Eva! And then I have to get it from all angles! ?

  73. Ha! Love this…all TRUE!

  74. Lori Dawnolyn says:

    You hit the nail on the head, Katie!! An excellent read.

  75. Lori Dawnolyn says:

    You hit the nail on the head, Katie!! An excellent read.

  76. Yes! Men talking to the top of your head?! A welcome change from looking at the chest. You want to say “er yeah, hi? My eyes are further down…but first off – would you like to chat about my hair?”

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