If you haven't visited Diana Jewell's new Going Gray Looking Great Facebook site, by all means -- go! One almost gets the feeling there's a gray hair revolution. Women in various stages of gray are posting their pictures, and there are some stunningly beautiful women rocking the silver hair. Check out Mia, Robin, Claire and Claire again!
Hair stylists and well-meaning friends like to say it's OK to go gray, but wait until you're 65 or 70 or whatever is in their heads as the definition of old. When I saw these silver-haired beauties in their 30s, 40s and 50s on GGLG, I was reminded of the George Bernard Shaw quote, "Youth is wasted on the young." There's no such thing as a minimum age requirement for gray hair. You don't have to save it for the end.
Much too often women view gray hair as the line of demarcation for aging. When you mostly see elderly women with gray hair, well, that's what you think. But when you see women of all ages sporting stylish gray hair, you begin to see the line is blurring. Gray is neither young nor old -- it's just a color like any other.
A lot of the women engaging with GGLG are in the awkward stage when you stop dyeing your hair and start letting the the gray grow in. Talk about a line of demarcation! But once you're on this path, you just have to hang tough and roll with it. And there are some happy surprises along the way.
I remember when my hair was coming back in after chemotherapy 13 years ago. I made a decision to remove my bandanas and expose my bald head so everyone at work could see the day-to-day progress. What an eye-opening experience -- taking off the head covering was an invitation to talk to me, and I connected with people in ways I never imagined.
After my hair grew in, I decided to dye it, and that lasted a few years. But when I made the decision to quite dyeing it, it was a lot like when I had cancer -- this time I removed my head covering of dyed hair, and people were curious about what was going on. Going through this difficult transition in public somehow makes you more approachable. I made a lot of new friends as my hair transitioned to silver.
I used to say I felt like I was leading a parade of one, but I now believe the tide has turned. I like it.