Finding your first gray hair can be frightening, especially with society’s pressure to stay young. But gray hair is beautiful and doesn’t signify the end of your prime.
Graying hair is typically a byproduct of the natural aging process, although there are other less common health-related causes. Grays can pop up after the age of 35, but can start earlier or later depending on your DNA. Genetics are even responsible for which hair sections turn gray first and the shade of gray produced.
Hair changes texture with age as the scalp produces less oil. Moisturizing is key to combat dryness and frizz: Use hydrating and sulfate-free hair products, apply leave-in conditioners, blow-dry with anti-frizz products, or try keratin treatments.
Dying gray hair is a challenge. Since gray hair is drier, color will have a harder time penetrating the strand and will need to be left on longer, or you will need to opt for products intended for gray hair.
Common Gray Hair Myths, Debunked
- Lifestyle affects when you’ll turn gray
✅ True. Smoking and diet can impact how quickly you turn gray. Deficiencies in vitamins such as B12, B9 (folic acid), and B7 (biotin) may be associated with premature graying.
- Plucking grays causes more to grow back
❌ While it won’t cause grays, it’s still a bad idea to pluck them as it can weaken the follicle and prevent hair from growing back.
- Ethnicity plays a role in the age you will turn gray
✅ True. Caucasians typically go gray before people of Asian and African-American decent. Scientists are still unsure why.
- Hair can suddenly turn gray
❌ While your hairline may appear this way, a strand of hair cannot turn gray. It will either grow as your natural color or gray if the pigment is gone.
- Gray hair is coarser
❌ It may feel like straw but the structure of the strand hasn’t changed. It tends to be drier due to the follicles producing less oil, resulting in a coarse texture.
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