Going gray… a year later

going_gray_curly_02Hello, my lovelies! So, it’s been about a year since I made the decision to transition to my natural hair color, including revealing my platinum (read: gray) highlights. As expected, it’s been a slow process, but I haven’t regretted it a bit.

If you missed my original blog post, you can read it here. You may recall I decided to go with a combination of cutting off a lot of the overly-processed, dark, dyed hair and adding some highlights to help disguise the grays. The highlight thing looks like a great idea on Pinterest, but not so much for us dark-haired gals who’ve been dying our hair for a long time.

My last post left off with me getting a shag cut that gave me shorter layers on top, where most of my gray and calico cat highlights were, which worked out pretty well. However, I’m very ADHD when it comes to my hair; I get bored easily. And impatient.

My hair is naturally very curly. After washing one day, while it was still wet and curling, it struck me: a curl pattern helps break up and disguise the grays and highlights that are still growing out. Epiphany! I tried the “curly girl method” a few years back, but got frustrated and abandoned it. I decided to give it another try and go curly during the rest of my transition to natural hair.

going_gray_curlyThe curly girl method has a learning curve and it takes a while to figure out what combination of products and application techniques work for your specific curl type. Once you’ve got it figured out, though, you’ll have much healthier hair with better nourishment, no heat damage and no harsh chemicals. Healthier, moisturized hair is a bonus for anyone who’s going gray as gray hair tends to be more coarse and unruly. No one wants that brillo pad look.

I’m satisfied – at least for the moment! – with the curly approach and will probably continue to wear my hair this way as the transition continues. I have small areas of highlighted hair that I’m planning to get pintura lowlights to disguise.

It’s been a LONG, slow process, but I can see the light at the end of the tunnel. Once the grays are completely grown out – maybe another three months or so? – I’ll start letting my length grow and am looking forward to having longer hair again.

June 1 Update

Unfortunately, the pintura lowlights idea didn’t work out as intended. When dark brown hair mixes with gray, you get an overall visual effect of a lighter shade of brown. If you cover those bleached pieces with your original, dark hair color, they’re not going to blend in. You also have to be very spaang_short_curlyring with these lowlights and touch up only the bleached tendrils. Although my intentions were good, I ended up with the very unfortunate effect I’ve been trying to avoid all along – graying hair on top, much darker hair about half way down. Moral of the story: sometimes you should leave well enough alone.

What’s a girl to do? You admit defeat and come full circle to the ol’ “chop it all off”  method of eliminating darker, dyed hair. Ironic, eh?

And here’s where we are two years after the start of this journey.


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