Monday, July 22, 2024

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Looking for away to go gray without a lot of ugly roots showing through?

Looking for away to go gray without a lot of ugly roots showing through?  Keep in mind, I am not a professional beautician.  I am a 60 year old women, who, after dying her hair for 44 years, is done with it!  I am embracing my age, my weight, my gray hair, my “old lady status” in society with open, loving arms.  I am contented with who I am and I refuse to  buy in to the theory that if I don’t court youth, my life is over.  Nothing could be further from the truth.

At some point in life, females have to let each other off the hook.  For most of us, we have spent countless years trying to be the perfect friend, wife, mother and worker.  We have held ourselves to such an unrealistic, high level of expectation, that it is a wonder – no, it’s a miracle we are not all locked up in a mental ward.  Well, at this point in my life I no longer feel I need to impress anyone about anything.  Sometimes, the only way to find our authentic selves, is to crack the egg shell that protects us and to allow the yolk to spill out on to the floor.

Here is one way in which you can accomplish that feat:  You can pay a beautician $200 (plus) to apply a bleach shampoo to your hair, or you can do it yourself.  A bleach shampoo is not difficult to master at all.  After applying the bleach shampoo to your hair, you would then add highlights to blend away your gray roots.  Prior to shampooing my hair with bleach, I conditioned my hair three times with a good conditioner over a 7 day period.  Make sure your hair is in the best possible condition first.  The color I had been dying my hair was a dark brown.  When I applied the bleach shampoo, my hair turned a very pretty, light reddish brown.  To the light reddish brown I added highlights, along with Wella Toner T-14, to remove the yellow from the highlighted strips of hair.  The Wella Toner T-14 actually took a lot of the redness out of the rest of my hair as well.  Wella Toner T-14 is a gray/white toner.  Wella Toner T-18 is white toner.  Use the toner that best suits your gray hair.

Tips For Keeping Your Hair Healthy:  I added the bleach shampoo to damp hair, that had conditioner applied to it. The conditioner does not stop the bleach shampoo from doing it’s job, but it does keep your hair feeling healthy.

I left the bleach shampoo on for 15 minutes.  When I washed it out, I conditioned my hair twice.  Then I waited a full day before adding highlights to my hair.  The next step is adding the toner to your hair.  The toner is the key to removing orange, blonde or yellow coloring from your lightened hair.  Depending upon the toner you use, your highlighted hair will turn out a very pretty gray white (Wella T-14), to a stark white color (Wella T-18), which will blend very easily with your gray roots.

Over time, as your roots grow out, you can add additional highlights to your hair.  It’s a great way to go gray, if you don’t wish to cut your hair short.  This process allows women with long hair, to keep their length during the grow out period.

To learn how to mix your bleach shampoo, I have added a few links to youtube videos (below) that will show you the exact process.  If I can do it, anyone can do it.  And of course, you could always pay a beautician to apply a bleach shampoo and to add highlights to your hair, just expect to pay upwards of $300.00 plus.

Pick and choose the videos you watch.  Some of the videos are a bit crazy, but I was impressed with how knowledegable most the girls were in dying their hair.  There is something to be learned from women of all ages.  Again, you can always visit your local beauty salon if lightening your hair on your own feels too, daring.  I understand that completely.

Bleach shampoo mix:  Equal parts (1/4 cup) bleach, 20 developer, shampoo.  Apply to dampen hair (add conditioner to your dampen hair prior to adding the bleach shampoo, to help ensure healthy hair).  Make sure your hair is completed coated with the bleach shampoo mix.

Leave on 15 minutes
(or test often to see how quickly your hair color is lightening.  Adjust time as you go).  Wash out thoroughly with warm water and condition twice.

To add light highlights to your hair
, place the Salon Highlighting Cap on top of dry hair.  Do not pull your hair up on top of your head prior to adding the cap.  Leave your hair down.  On the cap there are a series of circles.  You can use those circles to create a balanced pattern for your highlights.  Try to pull an even amount of hair all around your head.  You can just highlight the top, if you wish. How much of your hair you highlight is up to you.

Follow the directions for the Quick Bleach.
   1 part bleach to 2 parts 20 developer.  Mix well in the plastic bowl.  Be sure to wear your plastic gloves to avoid irritating your skin.  Coat the strands of hair you have pulled through the plastic cap. Depending upon the color and condition of your hair, check every 10 – 15 minutes to see how your hair is lightening. You can leave the bleach on up to 45 minutes, but do check your hair often.  Once the desired color is achieved, rinse thoroughly and condition twice.

Mix toner
(Wella T-14 gray /white or Wella T-18 white ).  One part toner to 2 parts 20 developer.  Mix well in plastic bowl.  Wear your gloves. Apply to dampen hair, starting at the roots.  Leave on 15 to 30 minutes. Check you hair color for the desired results.  (I went the full 30 minutes).  Wash out thoroughly with warm water, condition well.

Six Weeks Later….

After adding highlights to my hair on (4) different occasions, I decided I wanted to cut my hair short after all. I cut my hair to a 3″ length, which seemed super short at the time (from shoulder length hair).  It took a few days to get used to the new hair cut and how to style short hair again, which I hadn’t worn in years.  However, by cutting my hair short, my hair is now 95% gray/white all over and I really like it.   I can grow my hair out without worrying about ugly roots appearing.  Plus, by cutting my hair short, I’ve cut off most the hair that I have been dying for years.  The new hair growth will be my natural, non-dyed, non-bleached coloring, which I am really excited to embrace.

Going Gray Is Easier For Men Then Women
Editor  plus50women

This is the unfortunate truth!  Men find graying easy to achieve, mainly because society associates men of age with wisdom and authority.

Society on the other hand, penalizes women for aging.  Whereas men with gray hair are deemed quite dapper, women are viewed as old.

To stop this unfair labeling of women, women need to embrace their gray hair and stop apologizing for their age.

We also need to wear our gray hair in fashionable hair styles, that reflect the energetic and youthful individuals we are.

Gray hair can be beautiful, when cared for properly.  Wash, condition and style your gray hair regularly.  If you take pride in your hair, others will notice.

Many women wear their gray hair long and it looks fantastic.  It all starts with a good hair cut.  No matter what color your hair is, if you lack a good cut, your hair will not look polished.

Need ideas how to style your hair?  Go to the mall.  Sit on a bench and people watch.  You’ll be amazed at just how many women have chosen to go gray and look fabulous!

Imitation is best form of flattery, so copy what you see! 

The Easiest Way To Go Gray!
Editor plus50women

Did you know that caucasian women’s hair normally turns gray earlier then African American women or Asian women?  Or that extreme stress in our lives can also cause our hair to gray faster?

Gray hair is simply the lack of pigmentation.  As we age, our hair naturally turns gray.  As a youth worshiping society, gray hair has gotten a bad rap.  Hair dye manufactures are not only thrilled with the negative press gray hair has received, but they spend millions of dollars to promote that negativity in TV commercials, newsprint ads and billboards across the USA. 

Making women feel bad about aging is a billion dollar industry.  If women suddenly felt good about their wrinkles or their graying hair, manufactures of youth enhancing products would be out of business.  That is why you can’t buy hair dye in the shade of gray!  By helping women go gray, those same manufactures would be loosing their best paying customer.  You!

So how do you go gray with the least stress and quickest results?  The answer is not one most women want to hear.  As women, we are emotionally attached to our hair.  Our hair symbolizes femininity, sexiness, youthfulness.  The idea of cutting our hair short isn’t always appealing.

Yet if you can muster the strength to cut your hair two to three inches in length, going gray will be a much simpler, faster process.  It’s called a pixie hair do.  That pixie do will provide you with two really positive results.

1).  The over processed hair you currently are dealing with will be gone. 

Think about how dry and brittle your hair is from coloring it for the last 3 decades?  Now imagine it gone! 

2).  By cutting your hair short, the grow out time needed to reach your natural hair color will be minimal.

If you cut your hair short, you will only need to keep your hair short for 4-6 months, until your natural hair color has grown out.  At that time, you can go back to your favorite hair style.  Think about it.  In as little as 6 months, you will be free of coloring your hair for life! If cutting your hair short is something you just can’t do, then there are other options you can pursue.

To keep your shoulder length hair, then brace yourself for 12-18 months of gray roots.  If your hair is brown, you could lighten your hair color, which would minimalize the drastic contrast of gray to brown.  Another option is to use a semi-permanent hair dye.  You would continue to color your hair, with the semi-permanent dye washing out in 4-6 washings.  If your hair is 8″ long, you would use the semi-permanent hair dye for 16 months.

The negative to dying gray hair, is that gray hair is very hard to dye.  Hair dye doesn’t penetrate easily, nor is it absorbed by gray hair, like it is with brown, red, black or blonde.  This lack of absorbance results in a lighter or darker shade then the rest of your processed hair color.  The color difference may be too, noticeable for you, once your gray roots have reached a sizable length.

Since you are using a semi-permanent hair dye, the more you wash your hair, the more often you will have to re-dye your hair, which becomes expensive. As the semi-permanent color washes out, your gray roots will become more noticeable.

Another option is to add light highlights to your hair, to help blend in the gray roots (I chose this option and it worked great!  I loved the results).  Everyone’s gray hair is a unique shade of it’s own, therefore, some shades of gray are easier to blend then others.  Until you commit to grow your hair out, you won’t know how difficult the coloring process will be.

Going gray is not easy, but it is worth the time and effort to accomplish.  There is something very freeing and enjoyable about excepting ourselves for who and what we are.  Aging is not the end, but a new beginning.  Once we rid ourselves of perceived notions of what we should look like, embracing our true selves can be incredibly rewarding and liberating.

Keep in mind, it may take you two or three attempts to grow out your natural hair color.  Each time, the process will become easier, until one day, growing  your hair out will be a breeze.  As with everything we deal with in life, it’s a mind thing.  We mentally have to readjust our thought process to not feel old, just because our hair is graying. The color of our hair has never stopped us from accomplishing our goals before, so why should it stop us now?   

Go gray, be happy and enjoy the rest of your life!  With the money you save on hair dye products, you could splurge and do something fun! 

Additional Articles:

Easiest Way To Go Gray

What It Looks Like To Go Gray

Gorgeous Gray Hair Styles

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