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Some words about curls, hair health, coloring and going gray.

MyrnaMyrna Posts: 2,346Registered Users Curl Connoisseur
I decided to let my hair go gray. Since then, I have not been getting any root touch ups. And, since then, I have seen a huge change in my hair. It looks way fuller, more volume, better curl, better all around. So my words of wisdom to those who have struggled and struggled with products, styling, humidity, dew points, etc are: do you color your hair? that could be the problem.
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Comments

  • mustangbunnymustangbunny Posts: 1,033Registered Users
    That is really good to know! i am currently growing out some old color and can't wait to cut it all off.


    Low-poo: Looking for a new one.
    Condish: V05 Tea Therapy, Body Shop Banana
    Leave in: Giovanni Direct Leave In
    PT: My hair needs very little. I use Suave Naturals Coconut when I need a little bit and follow up with a moisturizing conditioner.
    Styler: Giovanni LA

    Go Red Wings!
    :hockey:

  • MarixpressMarixpress Posts: 62Registered Users Curl Novice
    Excellent point! I hope I grow a full head of silver curls some day. I think it oozes confidence and beauty.
    Day 1 of CG method: 10/5/13
    3b Corkicelli Normal Porosity. Medium Density, Fine Width, Medium Texture.
    LUS Brand #LoveYourCurls Curly formula (shampoo, Condish, Leave-in). Raked, smoothed & scrunched into soaking wet hair. Diffuse upside-down. Rustle shake at root when dry.

    NO CURL LEFT BEHIND!
    IG: @maribelle_curls
  • MyrnaMyrna Posts: 2,346Registered Users Curl Connoisseur
    Mustangbunny, I was actually in disbelief. My husband kept commenting on how much better my hair is looking, fuller, like I have more. HE said he thought it was because I stopped coloring it; I thought it might be my new product routine, and styling routine. but, I have changed, alternated products, and my hair still looks really nice. So I put up a post in a "Gray" facebook forum, and others agreed that they had had the same experience, including more new growth and less hair in the shower drain. One person is a stylist and she said for sure this is because of not using hair dye. I am thrilled. Maxi, I hope that more of us - at whatever age or stage of life we start going gray - will embrace it, not as "looking older", but rather, like the metamorphosis a cocoon makes to the butterfly.
  • wavypenwavypen Posts: 253Registered Users
    Personally I lack the confidence to go grey. I am in my mid-thirties with no wrinkles, not even crow's feet (and yes I'm slightly vain about that), my hair has been going grey for about 4 years and I've been dying it the whole time (actually I used to dye it anyway because my natural color is very ashy and doesn't match my skin tone, but now I have to use perm dyes and before I used demi), my natural color is dark brown and the greys are bright shiny silver and really stick out. It's probably less than 1% grey, but you notice that 1% because of the contrast.
  • MyrnaMyrna Posts: 2,346Registered Users Curl Connoisseur
    Wavy, I started getting gray in my 30's too, a strand here and there that looked like piano wire, or a strand from a horse's tail, if you get my drift. I think before ANYONE uses permanent color, you need to ask yourself, or your stylist needs to ask you, how will you feel 20 years from now? because 20 years from now, it will be much more difficult to stop color. I used to use henna. Now, for me it is not really about confidence. I am 62 and dont really crow's feet either. I just dont want to be at the stylist's every three weeks. I am tired of it. And, I am tired of seeing women my age who color their hair and think it makes them look younger. At some point, it actually makes us look older/incongruous. We need a gray forum here, and I have said this many times but the moderators for some reason dont think it is important. And it is.
  • wavypenwavypen Posts: 253Registered Users
    Now I dye it myself, I'm low income and can barely afford a haircut, much less professional dye. I'm sure that's even worse for it. I've definitely seen the older women who would look better with grey rather than dyed, in fact my mother is one of them, but maybe now that she's retired she'll let it go. I always thought maybe I'd do it big chop style, like stop dying late fall, wear hats all winter no dye and then come spring chop off all the old dyed hair, but it's probably not that easy and I honestly still have nightmares about the last time my hair was short and I had a jewfro for more than a year.

    I think it is about confidence for me, but also how vanity is intertwined, trying not to get too personal I'm disabled, but it's an invisible disability (chronic pain), I'm single, I'm poor, my health continues to deteriorate, basically lots of things in my life are not going well, but the whole looking years younger than my age is one thing that is, if I let myself go grey now I give that up.

    Honestly though I go long times between dyes now because I just don't have the energy to do it or find it or whatever. But then I can still tell myself, ok if I use that dye I won't have this problem. And then there's the dislike of my natural color mixed in (which as I said before is very ashy and doesn't match my skin tone). I've had a box of dye for weeks now, but haven't used it yet and the last time I dyed was probably 3-4 months ago.
  • MyrnaMyrna Posts: 2,346Registered Users Curl Connoisseur
    Wavy, I am not trying to convince you of anything. This is a very personal decision/choice. But years ago, I was working for Christmas in a mall shop and a woman walked in with show-stopping long, slightly wavy, platinum silver hair. I could not take my eyes off it, and I am sure she was also not that "old". I hope my hair looks like that when it all grows in! What I have learned about going gray is that many women have to change our colors ( makeup, and what we wear); and get a different style, to compliment the silver. I expect that when I am all silver, color will be even more important than it is now. You might consider highlights or lowlights; a good colorist consultation. It might cost (or check into your local beauty school) but highlights last a LONG time. If I was a young 'un, I would have purple and blue in my hair... : ) yes, I think I would.
  • mustangbunnymustangbunny Posts: 1,033Registered Users
    I started going gray in college. It runs in my family, if that's possible. I'm just hoping for a skunk stripe of gray hair.


    Low-poo: Looking for a new one.
    Condish: V05 Tea Therapy, Body Shop Banana
    Leave in: Giovanni Direct Leave In
    PT: My hair needs very little. I use Suave Naturals Coconut when I need a little bit and follow up with a moisturizing conditioner.
    Styler: Giovanni LA

    Go Red Wings!
    :hockey:

  • MyrnaMyrna Posts: 2,346Registered Users Curl Connoisseur
    LOL, Mustang, I have a small "cap" of gray at the crown of my head, and an "aura" of silver around my face (I like the silver around my face). I guess I will have to change my profile pic here soon.
  • mustangbunnymustangbunny Posts: 1,033Registered Users
    That sounds pretty! When it was trendy to dye your hair gray I was so into it. I think it looks sophisticated.

    Forgot to mention earlier that I loved Kelly Osbourne's gray hair, and here she is :)


    Low-poo: Looking for a new one.
    Condish: V05 Tea Therapy, Body Shop Banana
    Leave in: Giovanni Direct Leave In
    PT: My hair needs very little. I use Suave Naturals Coconut when I need a little bit and follow up with a moisturizing conditioner.
    Styler: Giovanni LA

    Go Red Wings!
    :hockey:

  • MyrnaMyrna Posts: 2,346Registered Users Curl Connoisseur
    GREAT hair, Mustang, you are a lovely woman.
  • DaniGirl88DaniGirl88 Posts: 1,583Registered Users Curl Neophyte
    I found a few gray hairs about 6 months back. It was just one or two here and there (actually my dad noticed them). I blame it on all the stress from Grad school, but I've been looking for them ever since! I'm only 26, so I'm hoping I don't start going gray this early. If I do, I may dye for a few years and then embrace it. Though, I haven't dye my hair in over a year and love how my hair acts without it.
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]

    3B, fine, normal porosity, high density, medium width and length
    Conditioner: Tresemme Naturals, Trader Joe's Tea Tree Tingle
    Co-Wash: As I Am Coconut Co-Wash
    Leave in Products: As I Am Leave-In, SM Smoothie/Milk, KCKT, Giovanni Direct Leave-In
    Air Dry

    Looking for new products and methods to try!



  • MyrnaMyrna Posts: 2,346Registered Users Curl Connoisseur
    How does your hair act without the dye?
  • mustangbunnymustangbunny Posts: 1,033Registered Users
    Myrna wrote: »
    GREAT hair, Mustang, you are a lovely woman.

    I WISH that was a picture of me. That's Kelly Osbourne, haha.


    Low-poo: Looking for a new one.
    Condish: V05 Tea Therapy, Body Shop Banana
    Leave in: Giovanni Direct Leave In
    PT: My hair needs very little. I use Suave Naturals Coconut when I need a little bit and follow up with a moisturizing conditioner.
    Styler: Giovanni LA

    Go Red Wings!
    :hockey:

  • DaniGirl88DaniGirl88 Posts: 1,583Registered Users Curl Neophyte
    Myrna wrote: »
    How does your hair act without the dye?

    It isn't as dry and, this may sound weird, but it reacts better to the products. When I used to dye my hair, it would take more product to get it to frizz less and look less dry. It also felt stringier with the dye and less defined. And definitely wasn't as soft.
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]

    3B, fine, normal porosity, high density, medium width and length
    Conditioner: Tresemme Naturals, Trader Joe's Tea Tree Tingle
    Co-Wash: As I Am Coconut Co-Wash
    Leave in Products: As I Am Leave-In, SM Smoothie/Milk, KCKT, Giovanni Direct Leave-In
    Air Dry

    Looking for new products and methods to try!



  • MyrnaMyrna Posts: 2,346Registered Users Curl Connoisseur
    Same here, DaniGirl, exactly. It does not seem to matter now what I shampoo with, what I condition with; even my styling products dont seem to matter. Yes, I too had stringy hair with dye. Sure has been an eye opener!
  • Firefox7275Firefox7275 Posts: 3,750Registered Users
    Permanent dye is hugely damaging to hair and skin, isn't that common knowledge?

    Absolutely some of my styling challenges are due to the increased porosity and decreased elasticity related to dye use. That is why I switched to roots only (no refreshing the lengths for five minutes each time), and why I focus on proven patch repairing/ penetrating ingredients.
    2a-2c, medium texture, porous/ colour treated. Three years CG. Past bra strap length heading for waist.

    CO-wash: Inecto coconut/ Elvive Volume Collagen
    Treatments: Komaza Care Matani, coconut/ sweet almond/ fractionated coconut oils, Hairveda Sitrinillah
    Leave in: Fructis Sleek & Shine (old), Gliss Ultimate Volume, various Elvive
    Styler: Umberto Giannini jelly, Au Naturale styling gelee
    Flour sack towel, pixie diffuse or air dry.
    Experimenting with: benign neglect
  • ZeldahimeZeldahime Posts: 223Registered Users
    I am 33 and I am currently about 30% *white*! It's not gray or silver, just white. My natural hair colour is level 2! My sis found my first one at 10. I started dying my hair at 16. Except for years 2006 - 2009 my hair has not been it's natural colour since.

    Of course, I don't get lucky enough to have a streak either. It's just scattered all about. It looks horrible! I'm waiting till it turns all white. Growing out my hair won't bother me at all. Done that a few times already. I just want all white hair 'cause this tweener stage looks awful. I'm hoping I'll be mostly white by 40. I think I'm being too hopeful, 50 is probably more realistic considering the rate I'm going. I was right about 25% when I was 27.
    Very fine, high porosity, currently dyed and growing out the relaxed portions. I'm pretty sure my hair's 3b something IIRC. We will be finding out for sure as time goes by.
  • MyrnaMyrna Posts: 2,346Registered Users Curl Connoisseur
    Foxfire, I was only having my roots done. No color pulled through. But I was having it done every 3 weeks, because I have a lot of silver. That is why I questioned whether or not the change in my hair could be due to stopping the root touch ups. Apparently the answer is yes. And, judging from the responses here, we need a "Going Gray" forum.
  • frizzinflafrizzinfla Posts: 190Registered Users
    Thanks for this post. I'm making an effort to avoid color and embrace my quickly populating grays. It's a little scary. I'm 45. I DO have crows feet and I'm scared to look old. But, I'm willing to accept my reality. It's much easier than trying to fight it.
  • JLeighsJLeighs Posts: 904Registered Users Curl Novice
    Permanent dye is hugely damaging to hair and skin, isn't that common knowledge?

    I don't think most people realize just how damaging it is. I didn't. Not until I switched to henna did I realize how much damage the demi-perm professional coloring was doing to my hair. Over a year and a half later the bottom 2 inches of my hair look completely different than the rest of my hair, and those are the last bits of damage. I'm waiting for a little more growth until I cut them off.

    I've sworn off chemical coloring. I can still pull off the henna copper-red, but eventually I'll start adding Cassia to the mix until I'm comfortable going grey.
    2C/3A, fine, higher porosity.
  • MyrnaMyrna Posts: 2,346Registered Users Curl Connoisseur
    NO, Firefox, most women DONT know how damaging color is to the hair and/or skin; if we did, do you think millions of women would still do it?? Look around you, almost every woman over the age of 40 colors her gray hair or has highlights. It is the THING TO DO. It is considered ACCEPTABLE; it is considered "old looking" to have gray hair, and there are HUGE profits in convincing us to color our hair. I repeat: I think this site needs a going gray forum. Just the fact that we are having this conversation seems to indicate that many women DONT know color is damaging; in fact, we are told that color is good for our hair. I find it highly disturbing that we know silicones, polyquats, and cones, etc are BAD for our hair, but there is no forum here for going gray, to include an honest discussion of continueing to color one's hair until the day we die.
  • Firefox7275Firefox7275 Posts: 3,750Registered Users
    People know how unhealthy it is to smoke, take 'recreational' drugs or eat junk and fast food yet we carry on regardless.

    I would imagine only a three week gap between touch ups would involve some overlap, even with a skilled professional. Double processing might partly explain the problems.
    2a-2c, medium texture, porous/ colour treated. Three years CG. Past bra strap length heading for waist.

    CO-wash: Inecto coconut/ Elvive Volume Collagen
    Treatments: Komaza Care Matani, coconut/ sweet almond/ fractionated coconut oils, Hairveda Sitrinillah
    Leave in: Fructis Sleek & Shine (old), Gliss Ultimate Volume, various Elvive
    Styler: Umberto Giannini jelly, Au Naturale styling gelee
    Flour sack towel, pixie diffuse or air dry.
    Experimenting with: benign neglect
  • BluebloodBlueblood Posts: 1,748Registered Users
    No it's not common knowledge that doing any chemical process to the hair whether it be dying hair or another process is damaging.

    People on here don't even realise there have been scientific studies which prove without doubt that Henna is damaging to skin cells.

    Henna hasn't been banned from use in the States, Europe and Australia due to centuries of use in the Middle East and India without causing any proven damage to health.

    I continue to dye and henna my hair because I weight up the risks. With permanent and semipermanent dyes I do patch tests to help decrease the risk of skin problems. Many people don't.

    I also keep an eye out for ingredients that are known to cause reactions in people but that's because I have a family history of allergy.
  • Fifi.GFifi.G Posts: 15,490Registered Users
    ^ I think several people know it, but the change is still a lovely and huge surprise. (I am leery to call knowledge or sense common anymore). I am well aware it is horribly damaging and still do it. A color melt down from the 7th circle or hell brought me here, but it wasn't the first time. I mainly stick to touch up's and toners now myself. One day I'll let that go, but not today :) It is just like when I (or several others) smoked knowing it causes cancer. Or like stuffing chemical laden food in your mouth, or any other large number of things. There is hardly anything we touch or do that is not incredibly damaging at this point.

    With that said, I am glad you are embracing your now natural color, and loving the benefits.
    When I hear terms like "hipster" I think, who told cliques they could leave high school??

    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]
  • Fifi.GFifi.G Posts: 15,490Registered Users
    ^ Do keep in mind I am lazy with though. I just thought about how long I have been highlighting or coloring my hair. 23 years, and I am 38. I didn't move into over all color until several years in, and didn't keep up with long. I'm lucky to make it to the salon 2 times a year. 3 max. I'm really bad about it.
    When I hear terms like "hipster" I think, who told cliques they could leave high school??

    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]
  • BluebloodBlueblood Posts: 1,748Registered Users
    Fifi.G wrote: »
    ^ I think several people know it, but the change is still a lovely and huge surprise. (I am leery to call knowledge or sense common anymore). I am well aware it is horribly damaging and still do it. A color melt down from the 7th circle or hell brought me here, but it wasn't the first time. I mainly stick to touch up's and toners now myself. One day I'll let that go, but not today :) It is just like when I (or several others) smoked knowing it causes cancer. Or like stuffing chemical laden food in your mouth, or any other large number of things. There is hardly anything we touch or do that is not incredibly damaging at this point.

    With that said, I am glad you are embracing your now natural color, and loving the benefits.

    My hair isn't it's natural colour I've used henna for the past 5 months.

    I did have my natural colour for about 2 years but that was only because all my friends' had started to grow grey and I wanted to see what colour my hair was. (I shouldn't go significantly grey until I'm in my fifties.)

    I then ended up with a severe vitamin deficiency (long story but I will explain more in a few months as I'm not allowed to talk about it in full detail in public yet) and being fed up and bored with my hair I used henna again.

    In regards to smoking seeing someone was emphysema put me off. Having had much older parents and older siblings mean I've seen people die and survive various cancers throughout my life.
  • caramix3acaramix3a Posts: 460Registered Users Curl Neophyte
    Just as there's pressure to color one's hair in many quarters, I'm also seeing in some quarters pressure NOT to color one's hair. Not all of us who color our hair are unaware of dangers, and not all of us have totally damaged hair either. To each their own.
  • wavypenwavypen Posts: 253Registered Users
    I was going to post this in the open letter thread that I realized was better suited to this thread.

    Honestly I think I would stop dying if I liked my natural hair color (and weren't single). I actually like the shade the greys come in, a shiny shiny silver, but my natural pigmented hair color doesn't match the rest of my coloring (light neutral olive skin and green eyes (not hazel, but def more on the brown than blue side of green)) and is super ashy, no shine and weird looking (it looks more like if you took black hair and made it 1-2 shades lighter to end up with a very dark grey instead of brown) although I'm starting to realize this may be beneficial when the greys are coming in more than now, because it may blend saltnpeppa or steel colored hair better than a true brown would, but I don't have enough greys for that yet.
  • wavypenwavypen Posts: 253Registered Users
    So I decided after this thread got me thinking about it, reading some great blog posts by women my age and younger who don't dye their greys and talking to my SIL who pointed that since I've been dyeing my hair since my teens and haven't seen more than an inch or two or natural hair since then that I may no longer dislike my natural color as much or it may be different, that I'm going to no longer dye for now (may change my mind if I still hate it) and try to embrace my natural hair color, dark ashy hair and silvers and once I have enough growth that it will be chin length virgin hair I'll chop all the previously dyed stuff off and see how it looks and what happens to my curls.
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