I haven’t dyed my hair in months. I see my ‘colorist’, as people say now, every month and have been going to several different ones ever since I first started noticing more than a few grey hairs in my head.
I spotted my first grey at 26 and every year a couple more showed up until I started covering them. I always noticed my greys while in my car, stopped at a light, looking in the vanity mirror along with pimples and stray facial hairs. Basically, I felt the most confident in my looks when driving (HA).
When I was 39 turning 40, I covered every last grey hair as if somehow this would turn back the clock. I was afraid to turn 40. What will happen to me now, I thought. Nothing happened.
Right now, I have let a prominent swath of grey grow out. It's right where I’ve been parting my hair for years. My fiancé says he likes the little grey swath that is very easy to see. I didn’t believe him at first. I like it, now. I worry when it grows out over months, I will not like it anymore.
But, I am tired of hiding it and spending $200 a month on my hair.
And I wonder how people will respond to my greys. Will men stop eyeballing me on University Place? I sort of won’t mind.
I have heard older women say they feel invisible.
I was thinking about my grey hair today and I walked by two different women. I paid attention to each.
By that I mean, I took a picture the back of one girl (see above) because her hair was dyed a bright pink. I thanked her silently as I walked by for “letting” me take a picture of her and for inspiring me.
I thought, if she can color her hair in an unconventional way, then I can let my bright greys shine too. We have so much choice, us women.
I walked by the other women on 10th Street and 6th Ave. Her hair was very grey; she probably in her late 50s. I imagined she was returning her huge lamented book at the Jefferson Library, a block away.
I stared at her until she felt stared at. Then I shined a hopefully not creepy or patronizing smile at her.
Have I ignored older people before? Have I made them feel invisible? I won’t do it again.
I think I’ll try this grey hair thing for a bit.
mid thirties. senior editor of British Vogue. Love.