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Older women and hair color?

Posted by BombShelle (My Page) on
Thu, Jan 9, 03 at 9:45

What is your opinion on what color a women should go as she gets say, 55? I have heard you should always go lighter, yet I think too light on older women make them look "washed out". I think red is an option, as long as it osn't a party color red. But definately black hair on older women I think makes even the softest face look hard.
What is your opinion?


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Older women and hair color?

Man I just don't know. I'm a natural redhead (dark auburn), so I wanna stay red as long as possible. I will prolly dye it as close as possible to my natural hair color when the grays really start popping out, but so far I'm lucky at age 30, to only have a few every other month or so.

My momma is solid gray, she's 65. She occasionally will go to the hairdresser and get a professional red-dye job (her original color), and it looks SO nice. It makes her look more vibrant and alive. The gray tires-out her face.

Old ladies with jet-black hair are freaky. Like Biker Mommas or something. There was a customer at this bank I worked at when I was 21... we called her the 'witch' because her face was wrinkly and looked about 90, yet she wore skin-tight black leather clothes, low-cut v-necks (showing her, uh, cleavage) and she dyed her frizzy hair JET black. She was trying very hard to look youthful and beautiful, I will give her that much; but the wrinkles, the slow pace, the bent back and the crackly voice gave her age away.

I say go lighter in color, or go red. Of course blondes and redheads will look better going red than a natural brunette or black-haired lady.

- darkeyedgirl


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RE: Older women and hair color?

My natural haircolor was dark brown but as it started turning gray, as I aged, the dark brown haircolor made me look as awful as the black does. The dark brown and black both are a very harsh look on me. I went blonde, but it is a very natural ash blonde which doesn't wash me out so bad. I really get tired of having to use it all the time but brown hair that has turned gray is just plain yucky looking.


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RE: Older women and hair color?

I say dye your hair lighter.If you have gray hair there is no color that will cover it more than a day.The crown of your head and around your temples soon show through.I say go platinum or ash blond.The lighter tone also helps your skin tone.The world knows you are over fifty so do not do the jet black thing.Give them one of the shades everyone knows is the style today.To stay young looking is to do a shade that becomes your skin tone.As you age your skin gets lighter and you dont want jet black or firery red.Even gray with the stuff they put in it to highlite it is beautiful.


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RE: Older women and hair color?

I agree Beverly.You could be talking about me.That is why I have decided to stay on the blonde side just not extreme.Plus it actually hides the greys I do have because they blend together.


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RE: Older women and hair color?

I have always heard that you should migrate back to the color of your hair when you were a child. So for most women, that would probably be somewhat lighter.


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RE: Older women and hair color?

How young a child whazzup because at around 6 yrs I had golden blonde hair(I remember my brother telling me on the way to the school bus that my hair looked like gold)I'll never forget that especially since I lost him just before T'giving.He was usually taunting me so I felt honored when he paid me a compliment(I miss him so much).Anyway my hair got darker as I got older so I'd like the idea of reverting back to my childhood color.Shelia


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RE: Older women and hair color?

I don't remember specifically how young you are supposed to go back. I don't know if I would go way back but definitely back to before it turned very dark. With blondes, I think it's most important to be sure you use a shade that looks natural. A good way to do that is to go back to how it was!


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RE: Older women and hair color?

I never heard that rule, but now that I think about it, that is what I have done. I make my hair ash blonde which is the color I have seen on me in pictures when I was about 3 or 4 years old.


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RE: Older women and hair color?

I think the best advice (if you can afford it), is to go lighter, but use highlights and lowlights. That way any incoming gray will blend better.


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RE: Older women and hair color?

I had very dark brown hair as a young woman, and the grey which started in my twenties, has now become very white around my face, with salt and pepper elsewhere. I really don't mind the white, but I hated how drab and lacking in shine the salt and pepper had become.

I have followed my Mother's lead and I now color (medium warm brown) all of my hair EXCEPT the pure white around my face. In addition to the fact that this is much more flattering than having solid color around my face (I am frequently stopped by strangers who compliment me on the look) a BIG bonus is that I don't have to worry about white roots showing. My hair is quite short and styled back away from my face, so I can go for weeks between touch-ups.

I had developed a sensitivity to permanent color and have now switched to a demi-permanent. This also seems to color the "salt" in my hair a softer shade than the "pepper" leaving me with natural highlights that blend very well with the natural white at my face. People often ask if the "white" is natural.


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RE: Older women and hair color?

This is an interesting question--one that I have often pondered and done nothing about. When I was young, my hair was very dark brown with red hightlights. It is also very fine and very thin. As I aged, I developed a large silver streak from one side of my forehead toward the back of my head. As years went on, I got more silver around my temples--truly silver, not white. However, my hair is still dark brown on the sides and in the back. I also have a heavily freckled complexion. Dying it back to dark brown all over is out of the question and blonde would be ridulous so, I've done nothing. I've been tempted, however, to go to a wig store and try on different colored wigs to see if I could find a color that would work. The only problem with dying, even if I could come up with a color, is that once you start, you can't stop.


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RE: Older women and hair color?

I also agree to go lighter when getting older but not too blonde either......... a richer tone of light brown with blonder caramelly streaks works well for me, it lightens up with a few shampoos...

when I went too blonde it washed out my features.


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RE: Older women and hair color?

My mother (originally dark brown) has slowly gone into reddish blonde, which I don't think looks so good. It's not her natural color, and just looks unnatural in general. I'm a dirty blond, and when I was little my hair was like platinum. Slowly grew darker as I got older. The less hairspray I put on my hair the lighter it stays.

I get so tired of seeing red, at least the dyed ones. Meaning - everytime I watch a "Makeover Story" on TLC, they are always going red! What's with that? It seems so overdone. Natural redheads are nice; but it just seems like the red dye is the first thing the stylist reaches for. I don't know.

I don't know what/if I'll dye my hair; I'm 28 and haven't seen a gray hair yet. Although that could change by the end of this year if we have kids. ; P Although actually, I think it's in the genes, because although my dad has gray beard, he's 63 and has no gray on his head. My grandma is 78 and still has salt and pepper, no total silver. I'll probably go gradually but keep it the same color I was up until I started 'going.' My husband, on the other hand, is 30 and I see wiry little gray hairs sticking out on the sides. Must be that Dutch heritage showing. : )

I've never colored my hair before, or even highlighted. I'd be too afraid of near disaster! (just my luck)


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RE: Older women and hair color?

I have highlighted my hair for years and I have noticed more and more gray hair coming in. I feel like I should be coloring it but my hairdresser said the highlights looked good (disguises the gray) I feel like at some point I will have to start coloring it and I don't know what color I will go with. My hair is dirty blonde and with the highlights its a blend of blonde and light brown. I don't think I would like my hair solid brown or solid blonde for that matter. Someone mentioned lowlights. What exactly is that? Is is possible to color your hair with one color and highlight with another color instead of the bleaching highlights?


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RE: Older women and hair color?

Im 48 I had med brown although the rest of my family 4 brothers and sisters are all blondes. My parents both had med brown.so I stay that colorI do look younger than if all gray.It looks nice on a man but a woman I think anyway looks unkept. Although there are some gray I like to see.


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RE: Older women and hair color?

Go lighter, and wear more/different makeup. Just as we adjust our haircolors and styles, we shouldn't forget to change our makeup habits also. Our skin tones, lip color and hair (natural or not), and eyelashes/brows change, so our makeup colors should too. (Just when you thought you were old enough NOT to be experimenting with makeup anymore - here's a good reason to act like a young girl at the drugstore again!)


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RE: Older women and hair color?

HI Everyone,

I thought I'd throw in my two cents worth. I'm a hairdresser and don't claim to know everything, but perhaps I can give a little insight as well.

First do you look good in oranges or pinks? If you look good in oranges your haircolor is going to look good warm too. If you have cool pink undertones, those orange tones aren't going to be your best color. Although a few of us seem to be nuetral and look pretty good in either.

A little warmth as we age is good. That can also be in the form of golds. Not brassy! We have gold undertones naturally and depending on the desired end result that dosn't mean you necessarily use a gold color. When we are both gray, and pigmented coloring can be tricky if you are trying to color using light colors. The natural pigments are very strong oranges and gold in the mid range colors.

Too light and most will be washed out. Too dark and you will look harsh and see every line. However, there ar exceptions to that rule as well. I know a woman with olive skin. She is a young looking 68 year old and look fabulous with dark colors...not black! never ever...only Asians have true black hair naturally. Your hair may be very dark brown but it isn't black unless that is your ethnic background.

Lowlights: someone asked how you do that. It is tough to do yourself. If is best left to a hairdresser. A lowlight is a darker color added just like a blonde is put in. There are many ways to do this and it can be done with a blonde weave as well.

Have you ever noticed a person with "dishwater blonde" that got highlights that looked great and then all the sudden as she starts to gray the color looks washed out and gray? This is the time to start adding a warmer BASE color (which means changing the natural color of the hair and warming up...or covering the gray). When you get your foil weave in blonde your stylist can add another color in-between the foils. Some stylists prefer to do the base first and then foil. Either way accomplishes the same goal. This way you can still have a beautiful blonde even if you have gray hair.

Also, if you do your own color don't pull that permanent color through the ends (at least not any more than absolutley necessary to refresh the color). Most hairdressers will use a demi or semi as needed that matches the permanant color because it is shiny, and less damaging to the hair. This is especially important if you have long hair on the top, and don't cut off the color regularly. If you continually damage the ends they will stip holding the color and it will fade much quicker.

Hope that helps,
lu


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RE: Older women and hair color?

I am 56, and I have been coloring my gray hair since I was 37. I use a dark brown. I have tried a lighter, more medium brown, but it makes me look too washed out. When I returned to the dark brown, many people told me I looked much younger. I do not have wrinkles and I think my natural silver [hence, Silverdove) would make me look dead!


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RE: Older women and hair color?

I have white hair--turned grey prematurely. I quit frosting it when I had an allergic reaction to a perm. Everyone says my hair is striking. I find I look better in different colors with white hair than I did when I had light brown hair. My skin is fair, so I need to use makeup so I am not wahed out looking.


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RE: Older women and hair color?

I am curious too, if anyone has any tips. I was told you have to stay with ash color if you use an ash haircolor and want to change the shade. I was told not to mix golden tones with it. So you can choose neutral or warms, but if you choose an ash color to stick to ash. Same with golden tones, don't use an ash. Is this true? Geez, it's so confusing.


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RE: Older women and hair color?

As I said somewhere else here on a post...my hair finally rebelled after many years of tinting, coloring, lightening, and streaking my otherwise natural hair color of dark auburn. When I turned about 65 it smply would NOT take color. I had it double processed and it still would not hold color. It turned pure white over about one year. Now, I can put in one of those temporary colors AFTER it is shampooed, but it looks artificial, and if I get cauget in a rain storm or sweat.......well! I am learning to live with the all-white, even tho my husband is still making the adjustment of no longer having a redhead around. And, I like the low-cost maintenance and actually the natural white is rather dramatic for me. AND, don't you think that at this age I should be able to "go natural"? HA


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RE: Older women and hair color?

I am always a fan of women who let their natural grey come in.

Now that I am getting some grey, I am feeling a little differently. Although I have very few, it was tough discovering the first one. I have always highlighted my hair and reverse color the remainder (high and low lights). I can go 4 months without too much grey showing thru.


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RE: Older women and hair color?

I color my hair because the color gives it so much more body. The grey in my hair is wirey, and the color tones it down. I use L'oreal and the conditioner they put in the box of hair color is wonderful! It helps so much and makes my hair so much more manageable. I guess some day I'll have to go grey since there arent' many 70 years old with brown hair, but for now, I'm happy. L'oreal is easy to apply and I no longer go to the beauty shop to have it done!


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RE: Older women and hair color?

Blond is assosiated with youth,because hair tends to darken as we age. It also brightens facial features and diffuses wrinkles some.
Yet,you would be correct,that too blonde is definitely no good too. Unless you have alot of grey,I would just get blonde highlights that frame the face.If you have alot of grey,then coloring all over with a caramel color would look nice.And I agree red is ok,but not anything drastic like the mahogony reds.


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RE: Older women and hair color?

When I was in my 50's I had great silvery highlights, but when I got more silver than brown I knew I needed to do something.

At Sally's I got a semi-permanent light brown color. Every two months I apply it to the roots only - do NOT color the ends. The result is grand. The roots stay dark like in ingrowing hair while the ends look like they're sun-lightened. The contrast is subtle and very natural looking.


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RE: Older women and hair color?

BombShelle, what color is your hair now?


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RE: Older women and hair color?

I am trying a sage rinse for my gray hair. I've tried this for 2 weeks now and am starting to see my gray hair turn a beautiful brown shade. I boil 2 cups of water and add a 1/2 cup of sage, simmer for 30 minutes. Steep for a few hours, strain and rinse 15 times with the same rinse. I just love the way my gray is disappearing. Please google "sage hair coloring" and you'll see a few recipes for this rinse. What I like is there is no harmful additives, just sage and water. They say after you get the shade you want, just maintain every week or month.
I'm 55 and finally found a way to cover my gray. I use to dye my hair a light brown which turned out too dark. Then I had to keep washing it to bring out my highlights. Now with this rinse I don't need to do this. Hope this helps someone.
Linda from PA


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RE: Older women and hair color?

I checked out this and other Web pages to research why (culturally) people were pressuring me to colour my grey hair.

Nothing I have read here or elsewhere has persuaded me to accede to the ageist/sexist argument that grey hair is a liability. I like my grey and my pattern of greying, which is similar to that of my sister, my mother, and my dad (call it "team colours").

I'm 59 years old and counting.


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RE: Older women and hair color?

My best friend, 69, has extremely fair skin and when young had hair as black as a crow's wing. It turned a beautiful white in her early 50's & she's never colored or used rinses.

She is so attractive all heads turn when she walks into a room...especially men's!


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RE: Older women and hair color?

Natural gray hair is not ATTRACTIVE on anyone. It's
just old.


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RE: Older women and hair color?

Hair color, the ongoing question. My mother colored her hair uell into her mid 70s. As she aged the color became less and less flattering and looked harsh to me. When she became ill she had to stop the color and her hair turned out to be the most beautiful shade of white. I swore that I would never follow the harsh-color path when it was my turn.

I let my dark brown hair go salt and pepper gray and aded highlights. That worked real well for about 10 years, and then I decided to let it go gray. I had a great time buying new silver jewelery and got lots of compliments. Then one day I just got sick of the gray. I had moved and lost my wonderful stylist so I was all on my own. I looked around at the women in my area and it was hard to find grey hair on a person under 80. It occurred to me that I might have 20 years of gray. So I started planning.

I bought some color and just went for a solid color. It is a light to medium brown, very warm and a whole lot lighter than my natural brown hair was. It looks great with my complexion and my new permanent makeup. It is sort of a specialty shade of silvery brown. Best of all, I am doing it myself. I have a really good haircutter now, but I kept charge of the color. After years and years of incicision I am finally doing it MY way and loving it.


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RE: Older women and hair color?

one of the things that makes people look dated is sticking with a colorway after their natural color has changed, which it tends to over the course of about a decade V its something we have a hard time seeing for ourselves, because it takes place so slowly V but one day, we wake up, and the medium ash brown that weve used forever V make us look like an extra in a George Romero film.

As we age, our eyes tend to lighten, and our skin becomes more translucent, giving us a look that can range from refined to fragile, if we have taken care of our skins, and really brings home what our moms told us (you remember just wait 30 years, and see how that Coppertone Girl looks) if not.

I think that the more subtle coloring of mature skin calls for more subtle coloring V black looks harsh, but there are a range of grays from gunmetal to pewter that are truly stunning. Copper penny red only works if your skin is darker than your hair, but softer auburns can warm up cool complexions that are starting to show unhealthy green tints. look at me Im blonde instantly adds ten years, two divorces, and the suspicion of a drinking problemKbut honey shades can look dynamite on women who had chestnut, or dark brown hair before.

There is also the question of HOW the grays are coming in V the approaches for addressing salt-and-pepper (where some hairs go silver, and some seem to get darker, and take on an ash or cool cast) are different than for how you can deal with graying from the crown, from the temples, or the all over fade that redheads seem more prone to than most.

And, of course, whether the mature hairs are grey, white, silver, or one of the less fortunate old linen shades.

the thing with greys is that they must remain cool, a hard thing to do with even semi-permanent coloring, since all processing tends to oxidize the hair, leaving it with a red or yellow cast once the pigments fadeK.and I was a color addict * my natural hair is ash brown, and about as dull as you can get* for years, but I gave it up, and let my silvers spring from my head with increasing abandon.

Then, I started playing on the blue haired old lady bit V since my skin says Im 30, and my hair says Im at LEAST 50Kand found out that, oddly enough, the shades between cobalt and violet look really great on meKand soon found out that a good blue is as hard to find and maintain as a good red. Special FX made a blue velvet that was perfect V and discontinued it, of course. So I went back to the Manic Panic that we used to have to wait a month for because we couldnt afford the air shipping from London V that you can now get from any Sallys beauty supply.

And under fluorescent lighting, it might take two or three days before anyone notices that my hair has periwinkle hightlights ;)


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RE: Older women and hair color?

My hair is light brown with lots of gray strands. I get highlights a couple of times a year to help the silver/white blend in. My mom is over 80 and her hair is mostly gray but you can still see a lot of her brown hair. She still puts her hair in curlers every night.


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RE: Older women and hair color?

I've been gray for years, coloring my hair for years. Originally had dark brown hair. My longtime hairdresser uses a brown base to color the gray, then blond highlights; the cut is medium short. Last week, she messed me up with a semipermanent brown to "refresh" the rest of the hair. The new assistant must have left it on too long because the hair is now a VERY dark brown, and with the blond highlights toward the front, mirroring the sweep of the side part, the effect looks silly to me. Her suggested "fix" is to soften the highlights somewhat with a Shades rinse and let the brown fade on its own. But after five shampooings, the brown is not really fading at all. Would adding more highlights help to soften the dark "helmet"? And/or would a special shampoo fade out the brown more quickly? I'm tentatively scheduled for the color fix tomorrow, and if anyone has any insight into this problem, I'd really appreciate it!


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RE: Older women and hair color?

Well, when my hair started to turn gray, I made a promise to myself----do NOT color your hair----ever!!! There is something about coloring your hair as you age that never looks as good as the natural aging process. When your hair starts to change color so does your complexion and there is nothing you can do to make it look natural with hair coloring. (May just be my opinion, though) I've seen some women who look awful by trying to stay young looking, but I guess in their eyes it is an improvement. Just age gracefully and be grateful---I don't like the alternative. BT


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RE: Older women and hair color?

Thank you, brownthumbia, for giving me some more perspective on the "importance" of hair color. My hairdresser did her fix today, and I'm much happier with the result, but what I should be even happier for is that I'm alive and healthy--whatever the color of my hair!


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RE: Older women and hair color?

vavavic, I'm glad your fix made you happy and worked out well.

I personally find that hair coloring improves the texture of my hair and I don't intend to stop ever; I have a few friends who decided to go natural, so grey, after they turned 50 and it's a nice soft look but it does age them. They don't seem to mind that aspect.


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RE: at home hair coloring

I used goldwell top chic hair coloring w/20 percent vol.developer...color is nice but it lightens up in 2-3 washings...what am I doing wrong?


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RE: Older women and hair color?

I've had long dark hair all of my adult life. my hair grows really fast and touch ups seemed an endless task so, I let all the color grow off and cut my hair short. I have an amazing head of white platinum hair. I get a lot of compliments on the color but, I feel it has effected my self esteem and its been 6 months ;every time I look in the mirror i see a stranger. I have thought about low lights using my natural color as a base . anyone know what color would go best with platinum white. I willhave to have my hairdresser do it. I was thinking shades of light ash brown???? very confusing.


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RE: Older women and hair color?

Hi! I really believe that the color hair dye that u choose is primarily to please yourself, esp. if you're over 50 or 60. My grey is mousy and ugly, and light or blonde hair completely washes me out. Natural color is a mousy ashy light to med. brown. I've always been a nonconformist and a rebel, so I'm going to go ahead with blue black. My mother had her hair dyed light blonde like forever and her coloring was very similar to mine, like a Winter with brown eyes and medium skin. I thought it always looked unnatural and definitely washed her out. If I like it, that's what's important! I think assigning women certain hair colors and clothing restriction is ageist, and this is what society tells us. Gonna do it gals and if I turn out looking like a witch, who cares?


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RE: Older women and hair color?

Hi. Can anyone please explain why cool "ash" colored permanent hair dyes turn my hair yellow-orange/red? I've been trying to lighten and brighten my naturally dark ash blonde hair with lighter ash tone colors. (I'm in my mid 40's and have charcoal gray roots.) However, my hair just becomes more golden orange. I now look washed out and pale. The packages claim that ash colors tone down red hair, but not in my case. I am now considering reversing things with low-lights to go dark again. Any advice is appreciated. Thanks!


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RE: Older women and hair color?

My natural hair color is honey or ash blond. My grey is getting more noticeable
with each haircut. I'm nearly 65 (what do I expect, right?) Soon I'll probably color my hair.
I plan to try to get the color closest to my own.


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RE: Older women and hair color?

The prettiest hair color I've seen is on a lady at my church: she has short black hair turning gray & as it gets more gray, she has a few strands all over dyed back blackish gray so it is such a beautiful & natural looking 'salt & pepper'(forget what the stylists call this procedure!) & she is able to keep it that way. Another lady has what I call the 'reverse Jay Leno': she had black hair that is all white now so she dyes it coal black & leaves a small portion in front the natural white color! Jay's is all naturally white now with a black wisp in the front... like a skunk I call it! I do think some persons have something similar that they were born with though. Many of our Native Americans here in the Southwest keep their long beautiful 'salt & pepper hair in beautiful braids or huge buns & nothing more beautiful than that natural beauty! A senior citizen that keeps her hair long,hanging loose down the back & dyed jet black (usually with the roots showing pure white!) ? ... uh, uh!!


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