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I'm Honey!

As a woman who has lived through many passages and learned through my larger than life experiences (positive and negative), I’ve discovered how to take a big empowering bite out of life.

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Passages After 50

Why I’ve Embraced Grey Hair & How You Can Too!

Darlings, If you’ve struggled with whether to keep dyeing or to go grey once and for all – I hope my story can help you. To tell you the truth, I embraced my grey hair ‘doin what came naturally’! I’ve always been an empowered and enlightened woman who dances to her own drum and likes it that way and going grey has truly been a natural progression of that!

going grey, grey hair after 50

My going grey story

For years I streaked my natural brunette hair with golden streaks of blonde. One day, on a whim, I allowed a hairdresser to give me a crew cut (don’t forget to have fun with your hair and switch up your style friends!). I watched in the mirror as my blonde streaks fell to the floor. You can’t imagine how mesmerized and shocked I was when I saw myself as a natural brunette with a few natural grey streaks!

Truth be told, I am fortunate that my natural grey came in white and bright, as not all grey does. And I was really lucky that the grey started in the front and center of my hairline giving my new short crew cut an artsy look!

After wearing my hair in a crew cut for a few years, I decided enough was enough with short-short hair. By chance, I happened to accompany my mother on a shopping trip for a wig.

To my surprise, the woman servicing my mom took note that I was trying to grow out a crew cut and came back with a wig for me! It was thick and long and made of gorgeous natural salt and pepper hair – my exact color. I bought the wig and loved it; adding another one just a few months later.

If you haven’t gone grey because the idea of growing out your dyed hair in front of the world has you panicked, try a wig! My gorgeous wigs saved me that initial stress and aggravation of growing out my crewcut, and in just two years I had a head full of hair with natural silver highlights.

My grey hair can look different depending on the light – sometimes more white, sometimes golden blonde, but I love it all the same.

 

Why I have embraced my natural grey

Don’t be afraid to embrace and celebrate your natural grey hair! Age is just a number after all! I believe confidence and self-acceptance are what truly make you beautiful – at any age! Embrace the wisdom that has come with those shiny gray locks!

I have taken the path of seeing my grey hair as having a look all its own. It’s a silver accessory. It suits my inner and outer styles.

Embracing it may not come overnight, so give yourself grace. Haven’t we learned after 50 that life is full of new adventures? Just as we’ve experimented with a new style, a new haircut, or new decor – going grey can feel like an exciting new journey for life!

 

Preparing to go grey

When you get the urge to go grey, prepare yourself mentally and give yourself some grace. The first six months are the most difficult. You will have to learn the art of patience! If you’re naturally impatient, consider my above thoughts on purchasing a wig (I started my journey by purchasing two, but this was just my experience).

When I was preparing to go grey, I found a great and experienced hairdresser who had taken many other women through the growing-out process from bleached or dyed hair to their natural grey, and I saw her regularly! Especially if your hair doesn’t grow in according to your plan, consider having your hairdresser add lowlights and highlights in shades of silver that can blend beautifully with your natural grays.

I also knew I needed to update my diet and beauty routine to accommodate this new change.

 

How I updated my diet and fitness regimen

I began eating more omega-3 fatty acids, especially avocados and oily fish! Staying hydrated was also essential. Hydration is key! Drink drink drink water. Consider buying a stylish water bottle or adding things to your water to make it more interesting! My favorites are lemon, cucumber, lime, mint, sparkling Pellegrino to half a glass (who doesn’t love the bubbles?!), or even cubes of frozen fresh fruit juice. I saw going grey as an entirely new change in lifestyle and worked on my posture at a pilates studio (I still do!) where I learned to adore my core! I got plenty of sleep! Cells repair themselves during sleep and the body rejuvenates – including your hair.

 

How I updated my beauty and style

Since going grey was a change mainly in my looks, I wanted to elevate the rest of my beauty and style routine as well. I began rubbing a small amount of argan oil in the palms of my hands and through my hair to give it a shine. I elevated my skincare routine by purchasing a new foundation, a different shade of blush, and lipsticks in shades of pinks, burgundies, and reds. Consider seeing a trained makeup artist who can help you find new shades that perfectly complement your new grey hair! Or try a great gift set like this one to find the perfect shade. I even purchased a few new pieces of clothing in grey and white and added some very cool silver and pearl earrings, too. Silver has become a new core color in my closet!

 

How I treat my gray hair

My weekly hair ritual involves visiting my lovely hairdresser, Colette, at Salon Duo in Chicago for a wash and style. I then follow up in the middle of the week with a wash at home. I have several shampoo and cream conditioners I use but at the moment, I love the Hair Biology silver shampoo and silver conditioner.

going grey, grey hair after 50

Going grey is a personal journey for every woman

As I sit in my ‘apartment in the sky’ watching the sun come up over Lake Michigan, I think of several friends and their choice of hair color. I would guess that 75% are bleached blondes. 20% are dyed brunettes, and 5% are naturally grey. What does that tell you? Darling, it is obvious. Grey hair is associated with growing old. Trust me, darling, just because embracing grey may make you feel older, you can embrace the wisdom that has come with your life journey, and of course, you can still be sexy and young at heart!

Every woman, especially a woman over 50, has earned the right to strut her stuff; walk her walk, talk her talk, smile, be candid, and above all stay interesting. Whether she has gray hair or not is her choice. She still has earned this right!

In actuality, a grey-haired woman at any age may appear younger than their bleached blonde or brunette girlfriends because they have come to terms with their authentic self. She has decided to age gracefully. This woman can be over 50 or under 50, who can tell?

 

How do I feel after going grey?

I feel more powerful! I feel more honest and confident. I feel I can be more opinionated, and that others will listen to me because I have wisdom!

And truly, darlings, my hair suits me. I feel more comfortable now with stylish grey hair because I know am not pretending. My hair is salt and pepper just like my personality!

Having grey hair, for yours truly, is about attitude and authenticity. It is also emotionally appealing to push back against society’s idea of what makes a woman after 50 look beautiful. I feel I am paving the way for my friends, though I must admit no one has followed my lead! Oh well, la de da. Different strokes for different folks. I still love them anyway!!!

Now that I think of it…am I the only one of my friends who is naturally grey?!

 

Are you taking on the natural grey? Have you struggled with how to transition? What other societal norms for women after 50 are you fighting against? Comment below and share your story!

 

 

November 2, 2022

Passages After 50, Style

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  1. Linda Cooper says:

    This article is perfect timing as I am trying to let my hair go grey. Started in July. You are right!!! First 6 months is the hardest. Feeling frumpy… giving it until the first of the year. Thanks for your relatable options and process. /Linda

  2. Sandra B Millner says:

    I feel very empowered and beautiful in my natural gray hair!!

  3. Bobbi says:

    During Covid, I decided it was TIME. I had been growing my hair to donate (honouring a friend’s daughter who died of brain cancer.) After the cut, I spent 10 hrs in my stylist’s chair as he removed all my dyed colour, adding beautiful lowlights to accentuate my ‘new’ natural. I still have a good amount of dark & love the updated, ‘trendy’ me!

  4. Catherine Kurtyk says:

    Thank you for this! I’m 72 and I just never got around to coloring my hair and have been thoroughly entertained the past 20 years by all the natural changes through which it has gone – brunette to ombré to streaked to blond to whitish blonde.
    Every 5 years I have to reacquaint myself with what color my hair has become! It’s a fun process that we women have been programmed to fear rather than enjoy.
    Thank you for this column!

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