Gray or Nay?

Personal Thoughts  About Transitioning to Gray Hair

I’m having a love affair with gray hair right now. I think of little else. Except of course, for a million other anxiety inducing thoughts. 😉 Based on recent searches, my Pinterest feed is fully loaded with every shade and style of gray hair – Transitioning to Gray Hair. How to Go Gray Gracefully. Transition to Gray Hair. Growing Out Gray Hair. Best Hair Styles for Gray Hair.

But so far, it’s only an affair. I’ve made no commitment to transition to gray hair myself.  My own hair is still colored while I continue to vacillate about letting my own gray locks grow wild. So besides being envious of so many beautiful women who have already embraced their naturally graying hair, what has me thinking about growing out my natural gray hair?

Transitioning to Gray Hair | Truthful thoughts on Letting my Hair Go Gray!

Over It!

I don’t love the actual hair coloring process. Those hours I spend in the salon chair every 5 weeks always come too soon and feel too long. And, I’m getting close to needing to bump my color back to every four weeks.

Note: I LOVE my Colorist to pieces. She’s educated and creative, and even teaches color. None of these factors have anything to do with her. SHE will be the KEY element to a smooth transition to gray once I finally decide to make the leap.

Gray roots. Brown Hair.  Need I say more?

I’m not gaga over the actual dyed color! My hair tends to pull up warm (read – brassy). The combination of  my pink, ruddy complexion from rosacea (here) and orange-ish hair is not the most flattering combination.

If beauty is pain, then I’m a super model!  I not only have rosacea, but I have seborrheic dermatitis (SD) on my scalp. SD can sometimes cause open sores on my scalp. Add hair color to that and you can just imagine how that feels during the hair coloring process. OUCH!

♥ Oh, the money I’ve spent on coloring my hair! Ugh!  I would love to remove that line item on the monthly budget and use it toward something else. When I think of the cumulative amount I spend a year on my hair… well, I try NOT to think about it. It’s my vice… after Dr. Pepper of course. 😉 

But maybe, like my beloved Dr. Pepper, my life would be just as good without hair color. Maybe even better. I read something Lauren from, a woman transitioning to gray hair, quoted and it keeps coming back to me: “What If The Gray Was Your Best Feature”?

Why is this such a HUGE decision?

It’s  Personal

The decision to color or not color our hair is a totally personal choice. By letting you into my thought process about whether or not to grow out my gray hair, I’m not trying to influence you to stop coloring your hair. But if you’re teetering like I am, you may find some of this interesting.

I’ve already told you WHY I’m thinking about growing out my gray hair. But to answer the question about why this is such a HUGE decision I’m going to tell you WHAT some of the fears holding me back are.

Growing out Gray Hair | What if gray hair is my GLORY?

Like my mom, I started going white in my 20’s. That’s not just a “wide part” if you look closely enough! 😉

Vanity and Beyond

♥  What if it gray hair makes me look….. OLD?

I’ve always look younger than I am. I get told quite regularly that I don’t look 52. When I tell people that I have 6 grandsons, they always say, “NO WAY”. I’m not going to lie, it’s flattering! However, recently when someone said that I didn’t look like a grandmother, I thought to myself, “But I am.” And honestly, it’s one of the greatest gigs going.

I think people say this because we culturally have a picture of a stereotypical granny in a rocking chair figure as a grandmother. To think the fact that we might have already changed that visual says we’ve come a long way baby. But have we gone too far to avoid looking at grandmother at all? Hmm… Just a thought.

♥ Can I be fat AND gray?!?!

I’ve said many times and even once here on the blog,  that I didn’t think my ego could stand to be fat AND Gray. But the “fluff” isn’t going anywhere right now. And what if I never loose weight? I’ve also said that I don’t want to be a really old lady with dark hair. That’s just too unnatural for me!

♥ Will I look like a hag?

Okay, before you go crazy – I don’t think women with gray hair look like hags. Some of the most beautiful Midlife Style Influencers I know have embraced their gray hair. That’s why I’m featuring a few of my beautiful, inspirational friends today.

But, we all know those women who don’t do much, or do too much (hello helmet hair) with their gray hair and it just misses the mark. And let’s face it, I’m not styled for photos every day of the week. Many days, my hair is in a ponytail, I have no makeup on and I’m shvitzing something fierce. Now, I’m a hot mess with brown hair, but will this ALL natural version of Paula be too much of a kick in the proverbial nuts for me to handle?

There are of course other questions I won’t elaborate on: What if it’s not flattering? What if I hate it? What if it’s kinky (and not in the fun way ;-P) AND still brassy? Can I handle the grow out stage without being locked in a rubber room? 

However, I wanted to save some space for two BIG, BIG thoughts.

Big thought ONE:

What if it’s not “sexy”?

First, let me tell you that looking sexy isn’t a huge goal for me. Not that I don’t want The Hubs to find me attractive. But, I think sexy is something we are, not something we show. I have an entire post I’m going to write about that, but back to the hair.

We, women, have a ton of “sexuality” wrapped up in our hair. The sheer quantity of women walking around with long hair whether it’s flattering for them or not, is proof enough of that. For lots of us, it’s almost a genetic idea.

We must have this idea that as we get older, we’re only sexy  if we look YOUNGER. Which is kind of funny, because do you remember being young and piling on the makeup and dressing “older” to either get in with the older crowd or because you thought guys would think it was attractive?

I’ll admit that my hair is important to me. Hair is our “glory” after all.  The emotional energy that I put into it can be exhausting. You don’t think you do that? Have you ever cried over a bad haircut?

I have a theory that one day I will find THE perfect swimsuit. It will be the one that I put on that will miraculously transform me into a Christie Brinkley-esque babe (then or now… they are both awesome). But just like even a great swimsuit won’t work like that, having the hair of a supermodel won’t make me one.

 It would seem that gray hair is the  one area we can’t stop associating with age… OLD age, to be specific.

BIG thought TWO

What if I’m no longer considered relevant because my hair is gray?

As women in midlife, we have crossed lots of boundaries and are making waves in more areas than ever before. There are actresses in Hollywood who have remained marketable even though choosing not to alter themselves (think Helen Mirren) for roles. In fact, they actually work more than those actresses who have so contorted their looks with surgeries, that they have “weirded” themselves out of being able to play normal roles.  However, there are lots of celebrities, that despite forgoing facial surgeries still color their hair.

It would seem that gray hair is the  one area we can’t stop associating with age… OLD age, to be specific.  In turn, are we saying the gray hair is unacceptable because it makes us look too old? Does gray hair make us look irrelevant unless we’re women of the boardroom, the courtroom or exam room?

But what if I grow out my gray hair and want to go back into say, leading worship in a church? If you’re at all familiar with charismatic worship in today’s larger churches, the platforms are full of cool hipster musicians. And many of the parishioners are their peers. Even with a solid voice, would I be considered relevant in that genre with gray hair? (Oh wow! I could go on forever about this and might feel a part II coming on)  😉

But let’s wrap this up…

Anti-Anti-aging Movement

The Aging Trend

We are living in a decade when embracing the diversity of our bodies and each person’s natural beauty is in vogue. Terms like Healthy Aging, Ageism, Age Disruptor, and Anti-Anti-Aging are seen in articles scattered around the web.  As Midlifers and beyond, we want to be accepted for our knowledge, experience, poise, and wisdom. “Relevance be thy name.” We are finally being encouraged to embrace our birthdays yet, it would seem, at least where hair color is concerned, we are still having trouble embracing those gray hairs as an indicator that we’ve earned another candle on the cake.

Will I or won’t I?

I’m not sure. If I can get my colorist on board and my scalp condition under control, I’d love to go all in and go gray in a day.  It wouldn’t be my exact natural hair color, but the out-growth would be more subtle. I even have a video saved from Pinterest that has already been sent to my “professional glam team” as a guide.

What if gray hair is my glory?

The truth is, I’m scared. But I’m also super excited. I’m anxious (in a good way) to see what I REALLY look like. I started graying in my 20’s, so it’s been a LONG time.

And if it doesn’t work out, or if my 6 grandsons are scared of me, they’re still making brown hair color.

Gray Hair May be our Best Color | Transitioning to gray hair |



But, what if… just what if, gray hair is my glory? THAT could be awesome!





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  1. Julia

    Gray hair is also very stubborn.
    Some chemicals, even some water can turn it yellow. The gray color is beautiful. Yellow gray is not beautiful. It does better with a short cut I think.

    • MAXINE

      I do not agree with cutting hair short if you do not wish to and has nothing much to do with the yellowing factor.

      Sunshine will also cause silver to yellow AT ANY LENGTH.
      In this case:

      1. Use a good filter on your shower if possible
      2. Baking soda in your shampoo on occasion helps
      2. Purple shampoos takes care of cancelling out any golds or yellows.

      This is a common issue for any hair color that is above the level of 7.

  2. Paula White

    You know I’ve not been following you very long about a year. During this time you have truly inspired me because I am built very similar to you. You’ve helped me to keep my style going even though I’ve got some health issues that cause me to not feel so great for a day or sometimes several days but you’ve helped keep me going as in get dressed . Do thank you so much💕. Now for the gray hair I’m doing the same thing but right now I’m blonde. As a former hair stylist and salon owner I’ve had many hair colors and style but this gray is just getting to be too much! So for now I’m very light blond and that’s helping to not color every 2-3 weeks but I really have wanted to go all the way gray but family and friends have been very discouraging and I don’t understand why!!! I love your hair either way and I’ll support you in whatever you choose so if you do the gray I may finally follow suit as well. Sending love your way😘💕

    • Paula

      I’m baby stepping my way to lighter hair too Paula. I just had highlights put in and am disappointed that they are still very warm. But, for now my colorist is working with me. So hopefully we can get to a good place to just let it grow while continuing to tone the warm out.

      • K Boden

        It’s easy to go natural when you’ve had chemo and all your dyed hair falls out. I have been cancer for over a decade and absolutely love my silver-white, chemically free hair. I feel healthy, sexy and beautiful. I receive compliments often and have even been a role model for some of my friends who tossed out the dyes. I now donate the money I would have wasted in the salon to cancer resesrch.

  3. Great article!!!! I have been fascilating between letting my gray hair grow out or continuing to color it myself, which is a pain in the hiney! This was encouraging and gave me a lot to think about

  4. /

    I have been perplexed with the idea of Not to Dye many, many times. All that changed when I tried on a wig with 50% gray hair and hated it. I see so many gray haired ladies around town and on the blog and they look Great, so I am sure you will look Great too. If by chance you really don’t like it, Loreal will still be around. It’s all about the journey. . .

    • Paula

      I tried on a wig too Neti. It was a cheapo I had ordered online and I didn’t like it either. I think the thing to remember is that our hair and it’s color will be unique to us. And I’m counting on my hope that God knew what He was doing when He “colored me in”. 😉

  5. Karen

    Four years ago, at age 47, I stopped coloring my hair. I had been going to the salon every five weeks, alternating between all-over color and root touch-ups (brown dye over gray hair). I finally reached the point where I determined I had better things to do with my time and my money. I have never regretted the decision! In fact, hardly a day goes by that I don’t receive a compliment on my hair…and I can’t say that was the case when I was dyeing my hair (even though I had a great colorist). In addition to going gray, I also stopped fighting my hair’s natural texture and found a cut that worked with it, rather than forcing my hair to adapt to a trendy style. My hair has never been healthier and I couldn’t be happier with my decision.

  6. Alicia Holthaus


    • Paula

      She’ll be happy to hear that Lisa!

  7. You could try “praying the gray away” 😉 Just kidding. I think some of these ladies you admire still look like they have a hair color process…it’s just not a dark one. Anywho, what if you went with a different base and got a lot of frosted highlights to start the transition. Just a thought. I haven’t looked into it enough.

    • Paula

      I just got highlights as a baby step toward blending the gray in better. They are still very warm though. I know that I’ll still need toners (and not the good kind) 😉 as I proceed. I just want less maintenance and to not have a skunk streak for and week or two a month.

  8. I love gray hair and am transitioning mine now. Of course, I wear very short hair so it isn’t a long time period. I have been coloring my hair blonde for years and just started the graying process last appointment. I went through everything you are before starting plus ask everyone’s thoughts. lol My colorist does a great job but as I told her if it all is gray and I don’t like it I will go back to blonde.

  9. Tracy

    So glad I just found your blog! Can’t wait to look around! I’m 44 and 1.5 years into growing out my silver due to reactions to the dyes so the “choice” was taken from me! Which I think makes it harder. I’ve chosen to keep my hair long as I do it – fortunately I have what looks like silver tinsel in my dark almost black hair so it’s not as drastic as If my hair was 100% silver. Most of the thoughts you’ve had I’ve had too for sure !

    • Paula

      Your support and encouragement mean SO much! I’ll need you Silver Sisters to get through it. So, I’m going to check out the FB group for sure.

  10. Jenny

    This is a very moving piece! We (us all natural girls) ALL went through these EXACT question/answer/question series with ourselves before we decided to stop coloring. I’m actually writing you, never been inclined before anywhere else, but you had me at SD (seborrheic Dermatitis). I too suffer from this, well, DID, before when I was coloring. I used to get the blisters, the scabs, the ITCHING, non-stop ITCHING for 2 weeks straight, one week itch free (if I was lucky enough) then time to color again. Ouch. HORRIBLE. I itch even thinking about it. I’m 42, I made the decision to stop when I was 40. I did not want helmet hair, I did not want scabs and itching, what to do. I gave “ditching the Dye” a GO. I made a deal with myself to lay off hair dye for ONE YEAR, and gave myself a chance to reevaluate after I hit that mark. I stopped in late Aug. not ever thinking what it might look like by Christmas and the Holidays, LOL. But I lived, I DID FINE, I might have even grown a few hairs on my chest (LOL, JK). I became a member of the closed group GGG on Facebook. They are an amazing group of ladies who are either thinking about transitioning, actively doing it, or like me now, already transitioned. So, what is life like for a 42 year old with natural hair these days….GREAT. Better than I ever imagined….for these reasons….
    1. My SD is under control, for the FIRST TIME EVER.
    2. My complexion is the best it’s ever been, since I was about 8 years old.
    3. I wear LESS make-up because my skin and my hair match. I used to wear sooooo much make-up, mostly to hide blemishes and even out my skintone. My daily wear these days… mascara, tinted moisturizer, and lip balm/gloss. That’s IT. If I go out, I add my BOOM COLOR lip balm to my cheeks and brush on a little eye-shadow. BAM.
    4. Your hair rewards you for going natural, UH BONUS!!!!
    Rewards you with, NEW GROWTH, SHINE, SOFTNESS, MANAGEABILITY, UNIQUE one of a kind COLOR….no two are the same! How’s that for a fashion statement?!?
    5. I don’t feel OLD, I certainly had to go through some emotions to get to this point but I actually think I “match” myself and look BETTER than before!
    6. I feel like ‘ME’. I’m supposed to look just how I look, at this exact stage of my life and I’m super happy to be here, and be HEALTHY.
    7. Although there are times I miss my all one color, all natural brown hair that I had when I was a teenager, I do not miss ONE THING ABOUT MY DYED HAIR, AT ALL. NOT ONE THING. And that is why Bourgeois states life can be BETTER THAN BEFORE. It really can, it really IS.
    8. It’s personal, only you can decide. For me, the health factor made me decide, I could not keep putting poison on my head and keep going through all that itching! I had mentors who openly talked to me about their natural hair, I was able to feel it, look at it up close and each ladies hair was soft and beautiful. I did not think they looked old or ugly, I thought they were memorable and stood out in a crowd. I wanted what they had!!! They dressed nice, took care of themselves, wore make-up and looked really pretty, my eye was always catching on them. They were my muses! Much like a pintrest page but in real life!
    9. Little known secret….men really like it. Just wait, you’ll see! 😉
    10. Freedom is priceless! Give GGG closed group on FB a try…it’s the perfect private forum to explore your interest in growing out natural hair. BEST WISHES! 🙂

    • Paula

      Thank you so much for sharing all of this with me Jenny. You are at least the 3rd person who has mentioned the FB group and I have every intent to check it out. I had started having some other hair issues earlier this year that have led me to get serious about the “stepping down” from hair color process. A lot of things can go wrong in life, but when you mess with a girls hair… well, look out! ;-P

  11. Heidi

    The transition to gray is about much more than hair. Its about freedom and empowerment. It’s nearly impossible to explain, but mid way through you will know. When you focus on everything, BUT your hair, amazing things happen. You will find a new you emerging like a butterfly from a coccoon. Gray hair care is simple and your hair will thank you for it. If you are in need of a group of 13,000 plus transitioning or already silver sisters, there is a facebook group that will lift your spirits and keep you excited about thte process no matter what kind of day you are having. Even if you are just thinking about it you can join. Email me for the link as I do not know if that is allowed here. <3

    • Paula

      I love how your analogy of a butterfly from a coccoon. Many years ago I stopped doing artificial nails. I’m a manicurist and did my own, so it had nothing to do with money. But I felt the exact same freedom you speak of correlating to my nails. Not artificially enhancing my nails doesn’t mean they are no manicured and taken care of… it just allows me freedom to not have to continually think about that. Your encouragement is overwhelming to me. Thank you.

  12. Maraina

    Hello! Great post. I’m 11 months in my transformation to gray. I love it. Feel free to see some of my hair pics here

    I recently joined a FB group called GGG Going Gray Guide where hundreds of women share their transformation stories, tips, fashion info and pictures. Check it out! Good luck.

    • Paula


      I’m going to check out your photos. I’m always looking for inspiration and know I’ll need more encouragement in the grow out process.

  13. It’s like you have read my mind and put all my thoughts and fears about this process on paper. I have 3 grandkids and being told people can’t believe it! I’m 59. But you are right – what do we have to lose. Brown hair dye will always be there!

  14. Emelia Alchin

    I decided to stop having my hair coloured about 18months ago because the dyed hair didn’t feel like ‘me’ anymore. (I’m 61). So with the help of my hairdresser went ‘cold turkey’ . I did at times look a bit odd but when that last piece of dyed hair had been cut out wow I felt liberated! . I decided to embrace the grey and had a stylish short and chic hairstyle and I not only do I feel like me again I have had lots of compliments on my new look. So anyone contemplating binning the dye….go for it!

  15. Joey

    I am 64, and have been colouring my hair sine I was 34. I had dark brown hair, and had my first grey hairs at 16. I started considering going grey about October 2017, and decided to wait until the end of the year, since I had a project which exposed me to the public quite a bit. And to prepare, I started to read about going grey.
    I have a fairly short hairstyle (hair length varies between about 2 – 5 inches.
    I did my final dye early in December 2017. I decided to go cold turkey, no highlights or low-lights (I thought this would just delay getting to the grey). Initially I covered up the roots with a crayon type product (Roux). Once the grey growth became to wide, I started to paint or spray on silver streaks with a Clairol product, (Colour Crave) and a platinum hair colour spray (L’Oreal Colorista). I think it is really essential to have a good haircut, so that the hair shape is good. And that the hair is nicely styled, and the rest of one’s grooming is good (clothes nice colors and styles, etc).
    I am now at 3 months , with 1.5 inches of grey. And discovering what I actually have. I am not totally white, there are some peppers left in between the salt! A bit of a discovery trip.
    Due to having a short haircut, I should be totally grey in another 5 – 6 months.
    In spite of the awkardness of the contrast between the dark and the grey, I like not having to colour the hair. And the silver/platinum streaks do help tone in the grey somewhat. And I make sure that my hair is always well styled (no frizzies, do a touch-up blow-dry if necessary).
    And on a really bad hair day, I wear a beret.
    I have saved many pictures of grey-haired women to serve as inspiration.
    I will always do my best to look the best I can, but after all, I am thankful to have reached this age, and if I look like a woman in her mid-60’s, that is exactly what I am and who I am. I see this as an adventure to a new srage in my life.
    So to other women who are considering going grey:
    It is a personal choice.
    If you go for it, do it in a way that you feel you can live with.
    It is nice not having to spend the time and money dying your hair (unless you go the highlights/low-lights route, which will reqjuitre time and money a while longer).
    You may or may not look older, it depends on your individual looks. But you will look more natural, and the lighter hair is softer on the face due to less contrast.
    You will probably have to wear more blue-based colours, since yellow based ones could let your skin look washed out. And you will probably have to adjust your make-up to go with your changed colouring.

    • Paula

      I agree with the makeup and hair changes that will be necessary for making this change. I recently lost my former colorist and as a result of that and my recent surgery, I am way past due for a color so have quite a bit of outgrowth. I am seeing a new colorist in a week who will likely help me transition. I’d really like to just take the color to silver and then let it all grow from there. But we’ll see what my new chick says. She’s helped other women transition so I hope I’ve stumbled on the right person for me. Thanks for sharing your story.


      • Joey

        An update: I had my hair cut last Friday, thinking that it would now be about 75% grey. But with the nice short cut the hair stylist gave me, 99% of the colour is now gone, and for all practical purposes I now have grey hair. There is a bit of colour left on the ends of my bangs, and small amounts on the tips of the longer hair. It all blends in as I am somewhat of a salt and pepper. I am still getting used to my different look! This was a bigger change than with any of my previous cuts.

        The lighter colour is definitely softer on my face, and I find that my eyes really stand out now. My eyebrows are still quite dark and well defined. I just need a little subtle make-up, mainly on the eyes. I don’t think I look older, I think I just look different.

        So all in all it took me 7 months to get from colour to grey. I could do it in this time because I wear my hair short. I think it would be much harder to grow out longer hair since the two-tone effect will last much longer. I also think that the more contrast there is between the coloured hair and the grey, the harder it is – one becomes very fed-up with the two-tone effect at times.

        I am glad I have come to the end of the transitioning journey. I feel that what people now see is more truly who I am. My only regret is that I did not do this sooner.

        • Paula

          Oh, I’m so envious, but HOW EXCITING for you! I’d love to see a photo. I think I’m done blending it to a lighter color. My colorist says that she isn’t touching my new growth, but I think I lose a little progress every time.

  16. ambrok

    I’ve been highlighting or coloring my hair for almost a quarter of a century…desperately trying to cover my grays that started to appear in my early 20s; but I’m done! I’ve been dyeing my hair because I thought I ‘had to’ & honestly at times I liked it/wanted to…but mostly it felt like something I ‘had to do’.
    Well, I’m headed back to the salon to get a nice transition color put in (lots of highlights with some lowlights to help blend my brown dyed hair in). This woman is ‘gettin her gray on’! I think it’ll be so freeing & who isn’t dealing with enough in life…I don’t need to be worrying about how I’m going to style my hair every day to cover roots or when I’m going to have time to color next…I have better things to do. Clearly, this is a personal choice & some may choose never go gray; but…I will & I’m 90% fine with that! LOL I’ll deal with that other 10% when I need to n just get over myself 😉
    A few thoughts on looking ‘old’. First…most folks in their 40s have gray hair whether they admit it or not. I’ll just be looking my actual age! Second, society says that women aren’t supposed to look old (Google ‘images of men in their 40s’ vs women…about 50% of the men will be shown with gray hair; but only 10% of the women. I call BS). Third, I don’t act my age, I don’t look my age & because of this…I wonder if strangers will think I’m more ‘hip’ than just getting older?!? Fourth, I’ve done my research on how gray hair is different/what is needed to have healthy hair, styling with different color clothing/makeup, etc…it won’t be maintenance free; but it’ll be me : )
    As for weight, I joke with my hubby (of less than a yr) how most women marry younger/thinner & THEN weight can sometimes creep up…I already gained my weight before we met/married, so I’m letting my hair go gray instead : )
    My only real concern is employment & age discrimination…if I had to find another job, I may dye the ends a fun color to hint at a more youthful age. IDK This one sucks, shouldn’t be an issue; but it is…
    And in the end, if I truly hate how I look with gray hair…guess what, I can still color it again…any color I want!

  17. Unfortunately, you are completely right – grey hair is always associated with ageing. Many young women have first grey hairs at their 30s and they start to accept themselves as old. This is a nature joke because our parents get their grey hair 10 years later so modern life affects us badly. Stopping grey hair is not possible with a mask or hair treatment that doesn`t change cells so don`t trust adverts and commercials.

    • Paula

      Thanks for stopping by Shaneya. We can hide our gray but it doesn’t change what lies beneath. Gray, white, brown, black, red, silver…. they are all just colors of hair. The more people accept themselves and go natural, the less we will associate gray hair with old and see it as just another color of hair.


  18. I’m 49 and growing my gray out. All of your concerns in this post are exactly the same emotions I am going through but I can see that you posted this two years ago and your profile photo shows you with gorgeous gray hair so this has encouraged me to keep going. I’m more curious than anything to know what my real hair color looks like. Thanks for your post!

    • Paula

      Thanks Amy,

      Yes, I took the plunge. I should update this post with my two or three progress posts. It’s a journey, but you’ll never know until you grow it all the way out. 😉
      Here’s the 6 month update
      At one year
      And 19 month progress

      All the best on embracing the natural you.


  19. Joleen Freeman

    Oh girl, I’m right there with you! Haven’t had my hair done since February, thanks to covid. I have an appointment next week and I am torn on what to do with it! I’m 44 but I have a 9 yr old and my biggest fear is being mistaken for his grandma. Loved the article!

  20. Kris

    This is great. 110% on point. So glad I found you in my daily search for the perfect color & cut and instructions for transitioning. LOL I have been wishing that just one of my friends could understand what I’m going through and that if I talk about the “transition” it is not out of vanity but soo much more. EXACTLY everything you have written! I hope others who are in LIMBO come across your writing and your humor that goes along with it! Keep posting, love it!

    • Paula

      Thanks so much Kris! It’s about a ton more. But what I’ve found, now that I’m all the way transitioned, is that I needn’t have worried. No matter which way you choose to transition, in the end, what I gained was far more than I could have imagined. It sounds weird, but when I see myself with dyed hair now, it seems like I was wearing a mask. It wasn’t wrong or vain, it just wasn’t the real me.

      I hope you find that same freedom on the other side too! 😘


  21. Chris

    I’ve been reading as much as I can and looking at all ages of silver to help me along in this journey, but you are the first to mention seb derm! My scalp IS happier without the dye, but it’s not the “fix” I had hoped it would be. Have you done a post on your scalp? Or found anything that really helps? I’ve done everything from nasty OTC shampoos to stupid expensive stuff from the dermatologist. I cried when she told me it would only be managed, never cured. Having to deal with this on top of trying to grow out my gray at 37 is harder than I thought it would be.

    • Paula

      Hi Chris!

      Seborrheic dermatitis is a literal pain to deal with; there’s no other way to put it. I’m sorry you have to deal with it as well. I haven’t done a post on it but a few things that help me:
      1.) Less is more – especially with hair products. Look for products that contain limited or no fragrance; specifically perfumey fragrances . This includes Shampoos, conditioners, and styling products. For instance, Pantene tears my scalp up!

      2.) Ketoconazole shampoo (RX Strength) – I don’t use it much anymore but when I’m in a major flare-up I find I go back to the basics – gentle or RX shampoos and little or no styling products.

      3.) Diet and lifestyle to reduce inflammation. I recently had a flare-up of SD on my face and scalp, really bad. But I was also just coming out of a flare of my auto-immune disease, ulcerative colitis which stressed my body and nerves. I had to take a step back and really reign in my diet to include more anti-inflammatory foods. Now, I’m almost back to normal.

      I’ll try to do a more detailed post about what brands I find less irritating for me in hopes it will give people like you, who also suffer with SD, a place to start.


  22. Linda

    Wow, thanks for being total honest in your blog about gray hair. These were my thoughts exactly!

    • Paula

      You’re welcome Linda. I’ve since grown my hair out and it was the best decision for me. I LOVE it! When I look back at pictures of me with dyed hair, it’s pretty, I live the shine, but now, to me, it looks wearing a mask. 😄

      Best of luck with your decision.


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