View Full Version : An interesting article in Time about going gray

Ella Menneau P.
September 3rd, 2009, 11:48 AM

I guess if my hair was a political or social statement, it would be, "I am comfortable in my own skin."

Interesting that this discussion is mainstream.

September 3rd, 2009, 12:55 PM
Very interesting article! Thanks for posting it. This sentence made me laugh: "... most baby-boomer women have held on to the hedonistic forever-young part of their Woodstock dreams a lot more tenaciously than to the open-and-honest part." :p

I was very surprised at her match.com gray vs. no-gray photo experiment.

I have only one gray hair so far (I'm 45) and I am 80% of the 'dye? hell no!' mindset. But I am 20% worried that, for my career trajectory to maintain momentum, I may need to dye when the time comes ....

Eden Iris
September 3rd, 2009, 01:21 PM
Very interesting article; thanks for posting.

I'm conflicted about this a bit, even though I only have a few white hairs. I love henna for reasons that have nothing to do with looking youthful (looking better, yes, but not necessarily young), and I don't want to give it up. But by using it, I join the "dyed women."

September 3rd, 2009, 01:42 PM
Thank you for posting the link! This is a subject I've been thinking about more lately, because W/O makes my dark hair darker and my silvers really show up a lot (I'm getting streaks -- how COOL!). It's funny how politicized something like hair color can become, but we'll see more things like this as the Boomers get older.

September 3rd, 2009, 01:48 PM
It is an annoying thing. Men get a few greys and look distinguished, maybe a little older. Women get greys and look 'alternative,' 'haggard,' or 'unpolished'. I happen to work in a field where looking 'alternative' or 'haggard' or 'unpolished' is kinda the norm, but I can see how your appearance can affect your job in other areas. Its definitely a double standard that sucks.

September 3rd, 2009, 03:49 PM
Interesting! I wish I had read this at the beginning of the week. I'm 35 yo, I started going gray when I was 27. But I've been coloring my hair since I was 12-13 years old. So 16 months ago I just stopped. Luckly my colored ends weren't that far off from my natural color but there was LOTS of gray. I had come to accept it for the most part. I'd have moments of wishing I didn't have gray hair but it is what it is. But just the other day I went for a cut and I I got all the gray covered!

I related to this article even though I'm not a "boomer" because I had people that constantly urged me to get my hair done and would tell me that it made me look old but I also think those people need to be more secure...oh well. I think now I will be coloring my hair for the rest of my life!

September 3rd, 2009, 04:05 PM
It's interesting how this article plays it. I look forward to having long silver locks :)

September 3rd, 2009, 04:08 PM
I figured out this morning that I am not coloring my white/silver hair simply because I like the color, no other reason. I'm not making a statement about being natural or accepting myself - nothing like that. I spoke with a woman this morning who had a hair color going gray that I absolutely positively would not tolerate if I had it; I know for a fact that I wouldn't. Suddenly I feel a lot more understanding of all the people who color their hair rather than embracing the gray/white/silver color change (or have any color they don't like, really). There truly are shades that look haggard, dull, and downright awful.

September 3rd, 2009, 04:10 PM
Very interesting article. I wonder, though, if early dyeing can actually lead to more greying? This is a highly unscientific observation, but I have noticed that women who dye their hair from at least their 30's seem to get more natural grey hair, and to get it earlier- which very frequently leads to more dyeing. Could repeated dyeing perhaps damage the hair and lead to this? As I said, this is by no means a scientific finding, merely my own observations. Both my younger sisters, for instance, have been dyeing their hair for at least 10 years, and have significantly more grey than I do. In fact, I have very little grey, and it is only noticable if I comb it straight back (instead of doing my usual part)- and then it rather looks like a skunk stripe! :uhh:

Personally, I think Emmy Lou Harris looks absolutely smashing with her grey hair!

September 3rd, 2009, 04:28 PM
What a well-written, well thought out article. I particularly like the statement that hair dye is now sold as something that makes the outside you be more like how you feel inside - your "me" colour.

I have to say, I have far more appreciation of the beauty of silver hair since spending time on this site. I can so understand the PR lady who daren't go grey, though. In the industry I work in these days, there are very few workers over 40. I'm often interviewed by people 10 - 15 years younger than me, and I've a nasty feeling that if I were to go grey, especially as a woman, it might prejudice my chances in the job market. :rolleyes: Maybe there will be an advance in equality in 10 years that will make this sort of thing irrelevant. Let's hope so.

September 3rd, 2009, 05:46 PM

September 3rd, 2009, 05:59 PM
It is an annoying thing. Men get a few greys and look distinguished, maybe a little older. Women get greys and look 'alternative,' 'haggard,' or 'unpolished'. I happen to work in a field where looking 'alternative' or 'haggard' or 'unpolished' is kinda the norm, but I can see how your appearance can affect your job in other areas. Its definitely a double standard that sucks.

That's my sentiments exactly! Men get grey and become "distinguished" or maybe "experienced", women get grey and become "tired" or "unpolished" or (Heaven forbid!) "not care enough to take care of themselves". :rolleyes:

September 3rd, 2009, 07:48 PM
Interesting article. Thank you for sharing!

September 3rd, 2009, 08:41 PM
Interesting article... thanks for posting it.

One aspect the article didn't address is the environmental impact of all that hair dye. It was one of the factors in my own decision to go natural: perhaps especially because we have a septic tank, and since we don't plan on moving my descendants will probably have to live with whatever I've put down the drain.

It should be a consideration for the boomers, if we're talking about the legacy of the Woodstock generation. Heck, it should be a consideration for anyone.

Oh, and there's also the health question - some people react very badly to the chemicals in hair dye.

September 3rd, 2009, 10:08 PM
My decision to just let my grey come in is motivated by concern about chemicals, but also a conscious decision to be authentically me, not covered up by colour that hides what is really there. It is political... just like having leg and pit hair, and using the beach to swim even though my swimmers are a special order, "cause women my size are not meant to be seen in swimmers".