Five Reasons to Enjoy Your Gray Hair
Because gray is associated with issues like boredom, sadness, and lifelessness, some people think that gray hair projects those images onto their persona. They surrender to the appeal of beauty product manufacturers to conceal a part of themselves.
But there are grayhaired individuals who see maturity, dignity, and elegance in their hair color. They submit to their inner urge to celebrate themselves. They do not think that hair color is a liability to one’s liveliness or sense of fashion.
This article suggests that the first group may be missing out on the pleasure of natural aging and presents five reasons to enjoy gray hair. According to Sylvia van de Logt, founder of 40+Style, “There is enough evidence that grey can look extremely good.”
"It’s not having what you want, it’s wanting what you have." —Sheryl Crow
We accept ourselves, not because we think that we are perfect, but because we know that we are valuable. As we go through the aging process, we maintain pride in the way we look; but we know that our looks cannot increase or decrease our worthiness.
Karen Springen and Marci Robin advise us in Good Housekeeping that “Our hair does not turn gray—it grows that way. A single hair grows for one to three years, then you shed it—and grow a new one. As you age, your new hairs are more likely to be white.” They also add that pulling out our gray hairs, as we tend to do when they first appear, can distort the follicles, making the hair feel coarser and look more crinkly.
So accepting ourselves—gray hairs and all—only makes life easier. Eileen Gravelle encourages men and women to go gray with style.
"The beauty of old men is the gray head." —The Bible
Even the Bible has a social perspective on gray hair, that considers it beautiful on both men and women.
“The beauty of old men is the gray head,” according to the proverb (Proverbs 20:29 KJV). The Hebrew word [hä·dä] translated beauty in this verse is a masculine word which also means splendor, comeliness, excellence, glory.
“The hoary head [head of gray hairs] is a crown of glory” (Proverbs 16:31 KJV) uses a feminine noun [`atarah] for crown.
In both genders, the words represent more than physical beauty that wins pageants; they refer to a virtue which the admirer discerns in hard-working, experienced, and trustful men and women who come through the toil of years with gray hairs to show for their time and effort. This kind of beauty is permanent.
"When children ask you questions about gray hairs . . . Do not be ashamed of the history. . . Say what happened to you, and magnify God in the hearing of the inquirer." —Joseph Parker
A high school girl and I bumped into each other on the street just outside the school. She and her friends were walking more than two abreast, something I was taught not to do. She looked at me and said, “Sorry, Grandma.” I was not a grandmother at the time so that further displeased me, until she added, “I called you grandma, just because I saw your gray hair. That’s what we do.”
Younger people who have been taught to respect their elders, respect seniors at the sight of the gray hair. Because they think that we have lived three or more times the years they have lived, they expect that we have acquired enough knowledge, wisdom, and grace to respond cheerfully to commonplace negative situations. They expect us to teach them, but without the anxiety and frustration that they see in their younger parents.
What good reason is there to cover up the color that nature chose to be our symbol of maturity and wisdom? True, it is only a symbol, but our respect for it increases our respectability.
"There is no color in this world that is not intended to make us rejoice." —John Calvin
Grayhaired people dare to find beauty in a color which is associated with transition—from youth to age, from brightness to darkness, from merriment to sadness. Instead of focusing on the drabness of gray, they visualize its closeness to silver and white, images that sparkle and add life.
And graying naturally is not without its challenge. One of the many manufacturers who advertise products for gray hair explains: “Unfortunately, due to lack of pigmentation, gray, silver or white hair is prone to turning yellow if not properly cleaned and cared for.” Then adds, “With a little tender loving care, plus the right products, your hair can be luscious, vibrant and more lively than ever.”
It takes effort to maintain our good looks and shiny hair, but we are even more attractive when we are brave enough to reveal what other people try hard to hide. For us, gray is the color of courage.
"I believe that every new gray hair and wrinkle are gifts to remind me that life is fleeting, and . . . precious." —Russ Towne
The most gratifying fact about gray hair is that it is still hair. People who lose hair because of heredity, stress, vitamin deficiency or any other nutritional or medical reasons are usually happy to keep whatever is left—no matter the color.
People who insist on covering up their natural color with black or other color wigs, do not always do a good job. Have you ever seen the gray pushing through the black wig, or forming an unsightly layer around the sides or at the back of the head? It is easier to see it on someone else, rather than on yourself. Perhaps if we considered that there is a purpose to everything—even to gray hairs, we would spend less time hiding them and more time giving thanks for them.
For those who dislike the gray but are unable for whatever reason to get the color they like, an attitude of gratitude will help them become contented with the beautiful gift of the color gray.
© 2017 Dora Weithers