Thinking About Going Old Lady With My Hair
One Order Of Pretty White Hair, Please... Hold The Mousy And Stringy!
After A While, Hair Color Just Doesn't Seem To Work Right Any More
As I've been getting more ... mature.... yeah, that sounds better than OLD... I've noticed that hair color is looking much different on me as I go through this aging process. And I'll tell ya, the old saying about how aging is not for sissies is totally TRUE!
Anyway, hair color that used to work really well for me just does NOT look right any more. I keep trying different products, but can't seem to find the "right" one these days. So, I'm thinking about maybe saying "forget about it" one of these days and just letting it go natural. If it's gonna be gray, it's gonna be gray.
Only thing is, I've heard that it takes a LONG time to let it grow out completely gray, especially when it's kind of long like mine is right now. From looking at my roots this last time, I'd say it's going to look kind of a hideous ~ mousy ~ brownish ~ grayish ~ streaky, and did I mention hideous? color. SO, what to do?
I've been searching on the internet for ways to let it go gray "gracefully." From everything I've read, it goes gray first, then later, sometimes much later... it goes "white". See, that's what I want, I want a beautiful head of gorgeous, flowing and wavy if possible WHITE hair, I want to SKIP over the gray part if I can! I mean, that's not so much to ask, is it? (Don't answer that!) So, I'm trying to figure out just HOW to do that!
Maybe I'll go fluffy like grannies sometimes do and tint it with a little blue, purple or pink... there ya go! I'll be a rainbow girl! I'll have hair that three year old's will think is cotton candy! That might just be a PLAN! Seriously, though, right now it is just looking dull and funky.
I know I need to do something with it, but what? I was using a light blonde shade of hair color, then that started looking TOO light, like I was damaging my hair, so I switched to one shade darker like I used to wear in my late 30's and early 40's, it looked really pretty back then... now it just looks... funky.
I have known people who dye their hair black and keep dyeing it that color, then one day decide to just let it go WHITE. It is so shocking when they do that, I don't really think I want to do that. Maybe if I let it go gray naturally, it won't be such a "shock" if one day it does go white. I think white hair is beautiful and some shades of gray are also very pretty.
I have learned a few things along the way on my search for an answer. I learned that gray hair is drier and stiffer than your other hair, which makes it more difficult to color successfully... hence the name "stubborn grays". I also found out about how hair gets its color in the first place.
As hair grows, when the brand new hairs are just forming, there is something called melanocytes which are cells that produce pigment. These melanocytes put the color, also known as melanin, into the hair strands, causing them to become either blonde, brown, red or black. The production of this melanin slows down as people age, and eventually it disappears, and that's when hair becomes totally gray. So, I guess I can't blame these gray hairs on my kids or my hubby any more. Da*m, I was hoping to be able to keep doing that! You know, I could have been a master of guilt, makin' 'em think they caused all this gray! (Winking!)
So what this all means is that everyone eventually will get gray hair when they age, but how much each person gets depends largely on genetics and on the amount of melanin they still have left. Actually what scientists have found out is that gray hair is simply hair that is lacking in pigment. And in a side note, there are researchers hard at work right now, and some researchers the Langone Medical Center in New York City (A part of New York University) have actually discovered a way to make black mice go gray! Unfortunately, they haven't figured out how to apply this technology to humans yet, and have not figured out a way to keep it from happening. So, for now, we have to just keep covering it up if we don't want to embrace it... yet.
I'm not sure I'm really ready to do this yet...maybe I'll color a few more times here and then think about it again. I know I have to try a different color though, this one just isn't workin' out any more! I did find out through some research that there are some really GOOD "root touch up" products, even for blonde-ish hair! I may start to try that in between colorings until I'm really ready to take the "ole lady" plunge and let it go au naturel!
Some Root Covering Products To Try
TouchBack Marker ~ This is the only root touch up product I've found that contains real hair color. It's temporary color, but it is hair color. There is no ammonia or peroxide, and it is supposed to be easy to apply and stays in your hair for a while. And it is dry in less than a minute, which is a nice bonus. The effects are said to look really natural, without any flaking. And it's available in eight shades. Available for about $29.95 at touchbackgray.com.
Revlon Root Erase By ColorSilk ~ This product comes in the form of a sponge applicator that delivers the magic in a precise way to your roots. The formula used is ammonia free and it's supposed to be very easy to use without mixing with brushes and bowls. I often feel like Frankenstein (or is that Bride of Frankenstein?) mixing all these chemicals, so this would be a welcome change. And it comes in twelve shades, including blonde which is nice. Many of these products seem to come in brown and black only! And it's pretty inexpensive, running about $4.49 at revlon.com.
Rita Hazan Root Concealer Spray ~ Color in a spray can, what WILL "they" think of next! Didn't they show this on the Seinfeld show one time? I thought I remember George trying spray on hair color to cover up that bald spot on one of the episodes?
At any rate, most people think of spray as being used for hold only, not to color ones hair, but it seems you can use it to color now as well. This is the first color in a spray can on the market. It's available in five shades, and supposedly you can find those unsightly roots and simply spray and go. It is said to dry quickly, with only one slight drawback, it washes out with the next shampoo, making re-application necessary, and again, and again. But for those who simply need a quick touch up for a special occasion and don't have time to color, this could be a miracle product!
Rita Hazan Root Concealer Temporary Color Touch Up Spray is available at sephora.com for about $24. Might be worth a try!
Oscar Blandi Pronto Colore Root Touch-Up And Highlighting Pen ~ How cool could this one be? Carry it anywhere, a highlighting pen that you can use any time you find some gray. The pen style makes application easy, and it is available in six colors. Only thing is, like the spray-on color, it does wash out next time hair is washed. But in a pinch, for a special occasion, or for that time you're about to do some public speaking and find those unsightly grays... ok, if you're public speaking you're worried about a lot more than hair. BUT, it could come in handy at times.
The Oscar Blandi Pronto Colore Root Touch-Up And Highlighting Pen (whew! What a long name!) Is available at blandiproducts.com or at Ulta.com for about $23.
There is also a mascara wand product available through Avon called the Color Protection Grey Root Touch Up that goes on much the same way that mascara does. This one comes in just two shades though, brown and black.
It's been fun delving into possibilities and planning my old lady hair here. I'll have to come back and update this when I get brave enough to let it go "old lady" and share my journey. Whether I end up with the flowing white waves I dream of, or a mousy stringy combination of wiry, uncooperative, unruly, sticking out all over the place, angry looking head of gray hair, I guess it won't matter much, what is REALLY important is what is UNDER all that hair, right?
Oh and just one question... Why is it that MEN can go gray and they are called "distinguished" and when WOMEN do it, they are "HAGS"?
Just WAIT until some kid asks me..."Are you a good witch or a bad witch?"....
I don't think they'll really want to know the answer! (Winking!)
Like Dolly Parton once said "You know they call us dumb blondes, but we know the truth. The truth is we're not dumb, and we're not blondes either!." Gotta love Dolly, she knows just how to be honest, in a hilarious way!