You think it is super easy to go grey, don’t you? I mean what can go wrong with this, you ask yourself. Nothing should since you are giving up those hair dyes that contain so many irritating and harmful chemicals. Everything should go smoothly. As you have decided to go grey, you will save both time and money that would otherwise be spent on your saloon trips.
Your hair will look better and healthier and you will thank yourself for this decision. Although there’s a little catch here, we will get there later in the post.
Right now, all that matters is that you have given up hair color and that’s a terrific idea. Let’s get to the nitty-gritty of how you can transition into this new look effortlessly.
We like to move the hard things out of the way first and in this case it is time. Yes, it will take your hair almost a year or more to achieve the level of gray you are after. The downside is that you will need a few trips to the saloon if you want to turn your hair gray seamlessly. The good news is that you will save a lot of money if you don’t chicken out midway.
Yes, this is the most important factor when you are saying goodbye to hair color. You have to remind yourself why you made the decision to go gray to satisfy your inner self and your motivation has to be strong. Also, you want to save time (use those hours for relaxation), and your hair will look better (yes, that’s for sure) or you will look more graceful if you go au natural. Oh, definitely remind yourself again and again how many dollars you are saving by going gray.
You need a strong motivating factor or you will lose the game halfway through when you come across naysayers telling you how you looked better before or why you should get an appointment with your colorist ASAP (people can be rude sometimes).
You will win the battle if you can stand these people without letting them color your judgment, pun intended. You can also boost your confidence by looking at pictures of women that have gone gray and still look feminine. Hey, those inspiring ladies can give so many of these hair queens a run for their money.
Shampoo (Less is More)
This step applies as you take your first step toward going grey. Why? Women sometimes wrongly assume that if they shampoo more often, their hair color will lighten considerably. You are right that it will lighten; however it would be too subtle. And keep in mind that you won’t get the results you desire even after over shampooing and that is detrimental for your hair. Even good things are to be used in moderation, and excess use of shampoo can strip off natural oils and make your hair dehydrated.
What your hair requires right now is a keratin shampoo, such as Kerotin Keratin shampoo, to hydrate your hair shafts and to keep the moisture sealed in the hair cuticle for a longer time period. We can’t stress enough that ditching your conditioner is the worst idea for any type of hair.
If you ditch make-up completely, would you be giving up your moisturizer too? No, then don’t skip the conditioner as that’s the moisturizer for your hair.
Condition (Every Alternate Day)
Usually, we advise people to condition their hair every day or on alternate days, especially those who have dry and damaged hair. The same rule applies to people with gray hair because of its wiry appearance.
You want your hair cuticle to smoothen down so it gives a neat and elegant look. This is only possible if you condition with a keratin conditioner everyday (if you have frizzy gray roots) or every other day (if you have normal gray roots) to moisturize the hair shafts as they do not have enough natural moisture to do this on their own.
Go for Highlights
Oh, we know that it sounds the opposite of going gray, but it’s important if you don’t want to rush into it headlong without any subtlety. This addition of color merges with the gray areas that are growing and helps balance your look. Another vital aspect to consider before going grey is to go a few shades lighter than you are currently so when the gray roots appear they can easily blend in with this shade.
What would be your choice: Would you take a plunge from auburn to gray or from ash brown to gray? You can see how gracefully the new gray roots can blend in with the latter hue. All you need is a light base color that works well with highlights to make this change.
You would like to keep away from any shades that contain even a tinge of red as these are the hardest to maintain and create a sharp contrast with your roots. Keep your goal in mind and that’s to rid your hair of color as subtly and as quickly as possible.
Lowlights as Alternative
Lowlights can work for you if your previously dyed hair is lighter than your natural hair color. For example, if your hair is chocolate brown and you had dyed it light brown, then get lowlights done in chocolate brown. This will ensure that when the gray roots show up, they can blend in smoothly with your natural hue, without looking strange.
Another option is called the Double Process. However, it’s quite harsh for your hair because it involves two steps:
- Bleach to lighten your hair to two or more shades.
- Dye it to a lighter color; and in this case the best options are platinum or gray.
Both these options-low lights and Double Process-will cut down your trips to the saloon as they require less touch-up. However, you still need to visit the saloon for a while.
Hide your Roots
Once your hair turns the shade you have been after, you can take a longer break till your next appointment with a hair colorist. Now, let your roots grow at least a solid one or two inches before you go back. Get a root touch-up spray to hide these gray roots for the time being.
Later on, you can ask your colorist to give you a demi-permanent base color and highlight color. You may be thinking what the logic behind color is when you simply want to give it up. A demi-permanent color and highlights create dimension when mixed with your natural gray color and ease the transition as a whole. Hair color experts suggest that you repeat this process after every three to four months until your hair is free of the strong base color.
Don’t go for a semi-permanent hair color as that lasts for only 12 washes compared to demi-permanent which provides coverage for 24 washes. The latter also provides maximum pigmentation and hence blends in well with your existing color and covers the gray hair remarkably well.
The texture of gray hair is coarse, dry and frizzy because your scalp is producing less sebum (natural oils) to keep the hair hydrated and that’s where deep conditioning comes into play. Here, you have to invest in quality hair care products as your average product will give you mixed results.
You want to rock your gray hair and then use a deep conditioning mask at home twice a week. Now, you should stay away from keratin treatments that are available at a saloon because they use heat and that’s something you want to stay away from for good.
Instead, give Kerotin renewal hair mask a try as it has aloe Vera and rosemary extracts with healing properties. It also contains keratin to supplement and boost your natural hair protein, giving it elasticity and suppleness.
Trim and Trim Some More
Trimming has to be your mantra every four to six weeks if you would like your hair to appear bouncy and maintain their sheen. Also, if you want to speed up the growth of new gray hair follicles, then you must get rid of the old dead hair cells.
Trimming is not only something you have to invest in while you are going gray, but you will have to adopt this habit and make it part of your hair care routine even after you have achieved your gray hair.
Massage Even More
Massage your scalp with your finger tips before going to sleep every night for a few minutes to increase blood circulation which will bolster your hair follicles. You should also apply Argan Oil once or twice a week for 5 to 15 minutes, depending on your hair texture to provide sustenance to your hair shafts as your hair cells are sluggish and cannot moisturize the hair with natural oils alone.
Another thing you can do is to try different hairstyles and see which ones suit you the best while you are growing out your natural roots. Try a mixture-a side parting one day, and pulled back hair with pins or tied hair (pony tails, buns, and knots, etc) the other day. This will make the change appear less drastic to you and your peers because the focus will be diverted away from the hair color.
This is for people who don’t want to visit the saloon too often for coloring and highlighting (we know, it’s a hassle). Wait for your roots to grow as long as possible and try all the methods you can think of to hide the pesky grays (remember, they only look that way because of the dark contrast).
Spraying is one good option to touch up your roots and another is to wrap your hair in a scarf or a hair band in such a way that the roots are hidden till you can get a shorter haircut to remove all that leftover color.
You want others to focus anywhere except on your gray roots while they are growing out. You can achieve this by diverting peoples’ attention to your face or your body. Applying a bright lipstick (think red, ruby, and orange) is great as these will keep the attention on your face and away from your hair.
You can also wear big earrings or bright clothing pieces to do the same. Definitely, wear your favorite nail color and ring so your mind can concentrate on something else instead of your gray roots.
Say No to Women with Colored Hair
Don’t take it literally, but avoid going through Instagram images of divas that have dyed their hair the latest colors. Check out style icons that have made a transition from colored hair to natural gray hair successfully instead. Look for women that you can associate with so they can inspire you on your journey and will help you lead to a simpler yet fuller lifestyle.
Sometimes, we need more support when we are making tough transitions. Join a group that supports going gray to help you with this slow yet rewarding change so that you know that there is light at the end of the tunnel.
Confidence is Key
This one is tough especially when peoples’ eyes are fixed on your growing roots. Take heed from your crazy style queens; people accept them because they carry their hair and clothing style with confidence. You can carry yours too by remembering that your gray hair will eventually grow out to what you have in mind.
If you are still feeling down, then highlight your favorite feature (such as eyes or lips and never both together) to boost your confidence.
The Final Say
This is a big change and it’s a wise one for those who want to save their time and money for other pursuits and for women who don’t allow hair color to define them. You can claim this look with some effort in the beginning (all those trips to the saloon for subtle change) till it comes naturally to you.
Once you achieve it, this gray look will lend you an air of elegance and sophistication with minimal investment on your part. All you need to do is have super moisturized tresses. You can achieve this by conditioning and deep conditioning your hair. Nothing gets easier and hassle-free and looks as good as this super cool look.