Inside: How I made it to 6 months of growing out my gray roots after ditching the dye.
I’m celebrating six months with no hair dye!
That’s a big deal, after 25 years of hiding my natural dark brunette hair.
Going gray from dark brunette hair is a bit daunting when you first start thinking about it, but I’ll be the first one to tell you that I’m SUPER happy with the new gray growth!
What is it like to grow out your gray roots for six months?
For me, the first couple of months were the hardest.
Let’s face it, if you’ve been dyeing your hair for a long time, you’ve most likely internalized the message that gray roots are “messy”, or that gray hair makes you look older, or that you are “letting yourself go.”
It’s hard to shake those old myths about gray hair, but the good news is that if you stick to your guns, you will realize that you aren’t letting yourself go. Instead, you are letting go of those dumb beliefs.
It’s quite freeing!
Going gray cold turkey isn’t for everyone
…but it was the best decision for me.
Part of the reason I wanted to stop dyeing was to stop wasting time and money on hiding my gray roots.
I’ve really enjoyed only having to go to the salon every 6-8 weeks for a trim, and only spending 45 minutes in the chair instead of two to three hours!
And instead of spending a LOT of money, I’m spending around $65 (including tip) for a great haircut.
Am I startled sometimes when I look in the mirror? Yes!
That’s another reason I’m glad I’m keeping my length and doing the transition slowly.
I liked being a brunette, and I need time to get used to no longer being one. I was born with a ton of dark hair, and I went to school with a lot of blonde kids so I really held onto my identity as a brunette woman.
Well, I’m saying goodbye to her now, and goodbyes aren’t easy, so I’m taking my time.
Since I stopped dyeing, I am losing less hair!
Yay! I was losing a ton of hair after each shampoo, but now, there is hardly any hair in the tub AND new hair seems to be growing in.
My gray hair is SOFT and SILKY.
Who started the rumor that gray hair is coarse and wiry?
I think this idea comes from the fact that when you have new hair growth, your little baby hairs stand straight up for a bit until they grow long enough to settle down.
But I (and many other silver sisters) have noticed that our gray hair is nice and soft.
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Here’s my routine at the 6-month point:
I only wash my hair twice a week, to keep my hair from drying out.
During the week, I use Neutrogena Clarifying Shampoo because I heard that it can fade color. It’s not recommended to use clarifying shampoo too often, so I try to switch it up and use a different shampoo every other time.
I also love Living Proof Perfect Hair Day Conditioner, as it makes my hair very smooth and manageable.
I use the Joico products because blue shampoo is great for brunettes who are going gray (it reduces the brassy orange tones that emerge as the dye fades). But it’s also very drying, so you need to deep conditioner your hair afterward.
Before I blow dry or curl my hair, I protect it by spraying it with Enjoy Protect & Shine – I am not fan of the smell, but I love the way it makes the silvers sparkle!
By far, the biggest change in my routine is that I wear a hat whenever I’m in the sun, to protect my gray hair from yellowing.
I should have been wearing a hat anyway, but I always feel like a dork in a hat. But I no longer care if I look like a GIANT DORK, so I keep a hat in my car at all times.
It’s a cute pink hat, so what was I afraid of, for Pete’s sake?
Going gray cold turkey isn’t for everyone
Even though I’m loving this process and finding it transformative, you will never find any judgments from me about women who dye their hair or go back to dyeing their hair after trying to go gray.
It’s a personal decision and you have to do what is best for you!
Blogger Debbie Roes expressed mixed feelings about her transition in this excellent blog post. She has some very interesting insights that you should check out.
If you’re transitioning to gray, how are you feeling about it so far?
I’d love to hear from you in the comments section below!
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