If You’re Letting Your Hair Go Gray, Do This First
Coloring your hair can be high-maintenance and expensive not to mention embracing a natural gray can look very chic, especially with the right cut and style.
If you’re tired of heading to the salon every few weeks for a touch-up or working on your roots at home, and you’re wondering if it’s time to go gray you’ve come to the right place. There are a few things you need to prepare for, and we have recommendations to help including what you need to do before letting your hair go gray.
Locate a Gray Hair Specialist.
Once you decide you’re ready to give up coloring your hair, it’s time to talk to your hairstylist, or better yet a hairstylist who specializes in gray hair to find out what your options are. A gray hair specialist will assess your hair and help you to determine which transaction technique is best.
There are several options for how you can go gray, including decolorizing, doing a series of highlight sessions, a major haircut, or just forgetting about it and letting it go. You’ll want to know what you’re getting into before making this major change.
The process of going gray naturally can take quite a while. You don’t want to be caught in the in-between stage, especially if you’ve got big events coming up. Luckily, there are ways to achieve your natural color faster.
For those who don’t want to spend time growing out their gray, locate and talk to a stylist specializing in gray hair about your options to make this an easy transition without any wait time.
Consider Cutting Your Hair.
A shorter cut will also make the transition easier. Consider getting a major haircut or get mentally prepared to go through the stages of getting rid of colored parts of hair. Going gray takes less time on shorter hair. Think about getting a pixie, bob, or lob.
A new haircut can also help change your look. If you’re letting your hair go gray, we recommend embracing and styling accordingly by getting a professional cut that complements your overall looks. Sometimes a fresh cut can look more youthful than long gray locks.
Experiment With Highlights.
If you’re ready to embrace your natural color but aren’t ready to give up color services completely, try adding subtle highlights. We recommend adding highlights or lowlights in different shades of gray to add dimension to your hair color. This will help ensure your color doesn’t look flat. You can even have fun with trends, like balayage highlights, which is a free-hand technique that looks extremely natural.
Use The Appropriate Haircare Products.
Compared to darker hair, gray is a more fragile color. If you don’t want your new gray locks to turn dull or yellow, it’s best to treat them with the right products. Additionally, you don’t just want your gray hair to look great—you also want it to feel great. While we often discuss gray hair in terms of color (it is the most visible change, after all), but those silvery strands transform in texture, too as the loss of melanin and sebum can cause it to become drier and more coarse. If you’ve never dealt with this type of hair texture before, you may want to consider tweaking your hair care routine—starting with this low-lift hack.
1. Hydrate the strands.
For dry, coarse strands, hydration is everything. Consider it a sign to give your hair some extra love: Use gray hair specific moisturizing shampoos and conditioners, such as REF Cool Silver Shampoo and REF Cool Silver Conditioner and incorporate a hair mask such as REF Intense Hydrate Masque, once or even twice a week.
2. Hair oils are your friends.
Seal in all that hydration with a good hair oil such as REF Leave In Conditioner or Davine Oi Oil, but do not to overdo it, as oil buildup can lead to brittleness, especially for low-porosity hair. Kind of counterintuitive, no?
3. Mist and seal before stylers.
You might even want to mist the strands before applying your styling products—again, you want to lock in as much hydration as possible, and water tends to evaporate from dry, coarse hair as soon as you step out of the shower. Use a mist spray bottle during product application, and then apply a layer of protection such as a keratin-infused sealer like Davines Nourishing Living Enzyme Infusion.
Specific stylers will vary depending on your hair type, so be sure to identify your specific strand pattern before piling on products—the grays may feel more coarse, but they don’t mess too much with your curl pattern. That said, those with straighter hair should still look for products that allow for movement and breathability, while those with curls or coils might need a bit more hold.
4. Rework your clarifying routine.
Scalp care is important, and you do need to remove gunk and buildup every once in a while. But if you find your strands parched dry, you might want to rethink your clarifying shampoo or scalp scrub schedule—perhaps extend it to a biweekly basis if you find once a week way too drying.
5. Supply your scalp with stimulating oils.
Your follicles will begin producing less sebum as you age, but you can give them some extra help by massaging stimulating oils onto the scalp regularly to promote the production of natural oils. Try diluting rosemary or tea tree oil with a lightweight carrier oil (like jojoba, which is closest to the skin’s own sebum), as both contain stimulating actives.
You’ll be saving money on visiting your hairstylist weekly, apply some of that saving and invest in the right products to properly care for your gray hair.
If you’re considering, or have already decided to go gray locate a hairstylist who specializes in gray hair, talk to your stylist to formulate a transition plan, consider a new haircut and a balayage to accelerate your transition and to refresh your look, buy the appropriate gray hair specific hair products and channel your inner Jane Fonda in Grace & Frankie, because you’re about to look just as elegant!
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