I was 43 when I looked in the mirror and was shocked at what I saw. I saw gray hair taking over. I saw my mother. I saw “old.” I saw someone I was not ready to see.
Against my boyfriend’s and my kids’ wishes, I started dying my hair.
Then, five years later, I was talking with a friend about age—how it felt and what it meant. I was 48 at the time and I had been waiting and wondering, along with my peers, when I was going to feel like less.
After all, what I heard throughout my life was that I was going to get worse with age. And there I was, sharing with her that I was feeling better than ever. I was more confident and vivacious than ever before.
I knew I clearly had more to offer the world. I had accumulated so much more experience, knowledge, self awareness, skills, and life savvy that I felt like I was just getting started.
I finally understood that as my life progressed I was adding to who I am. I was becoming more and better as time went by. Society tells us we lose value as we age and I was coming to the realization that we actually gain value as we age.
Silver hair became freedom.
So back to my gray hair. With this new pro-age viewpoint, I saw my gray hair in a whole new way. It was now the physical evidence of a lifetime of accomplishments.
I asked myself, “How will others see that age can be full of passion, vitality and beauty if we are always trying to conceal it with hair dyes, wrinkle creams, and cosmetic surgery?” And that was that. I threw the bottle of dye in the trash and never looked back.
It was with courage and excitement that I watched my natural color grow out of hiding.
As the white hair grew in, I took note of how much better I felt. My fear of looking “older” was replaced with a sense of freedom and pride. I was truly celebrating my age rather than fearing it.
Why do I now call my gray hair silver? Because the connotation of gray is drab, depressing, and overcast. Silver is shiny, pretty and valuable.
Now I wear all the signs of age on my body like medals of honor.
I earned these badges by living a long, full life with enthusiasm and passion. I believe we all deserve to wear our age with celebration and pride.
If you are ready to let your silver hair shine, here are a few tips that might help you get through the transition.
Wait to judge.
I cannot stress enough how important it is to see your entire head of hair grown in to its full glory, before judging.
You cannot tell how your hair will look by just a few inches of roots. You will be amazed by the nuances, highlights, depth and varied tones you have hidden under the dye. You will have to see your entire head of hair with all the dye cut off to truly get an idea of how beautiful it can be.
I receive emails regularly from women who report they have never had as many compliments on their hair since they let it go completely to their natural color.
Know the science.
Your hair and your overall health can be negatively impacted from regular use of toxic chemicals on your scalp.
There is no such thing as gray or silver hair. Each individual hair either has color i.e. red, blonde, brown, black or it has no color at all, i.e. white!
When your hair looks silver, pewter, salt and pepper or snow white, it’s the result of white hair mixing with your colored hair. This creates a shade that is unique to you.
Google the subject. You will find myriad of websites, blogs, Youtube videos, inspiring photos and articles about growing out your silver hair.
Going Gray, Looking Great Facebook page, Gray and Proud Facebook page, and Grey is OK blog, to name a few.
Find a hairdresser that is pro-age and pro-silver. They can make suggestions to help with your transition.
Talk with women who have already made the transition to their natural hair color.
What has been your experience? We would love to know!
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