THE CHOICE TO WEAR A GRAY - I WILL STILL CALL EVERYTHING. Such a seemingly natural feature of appearance still remains, if not a subject of public censure, then at least a cause for controversy. The links that can be found for "gray hair" contain a daunting set of words: "treatment", "diagnosis", "symptoms" - while changes in hair pigmentation are neither a violation, nor even more so, a disease. A lack of melanin appears with age in most people in the world. There are many factors, primarily genetic and endocrine, so early gray hair is also common. At the same time, it is still associated mainly with aging - and this is no longer just a mistake, but a manifestation of ageism, which women especially acutely feel.
While gray hair in men is considered an indicator of solidity and maturity, in the case of women it is often a sign of “wilting”: people of both sexes have gray hair, but the difference in social attitudes in one and the other case is obvious. Painting over the gray hair that has appeared in order to stay in the ranks of the "young" for a longer time seems like a matter of course. But a woman's decision not to do this evokes a wide range of emotions in those around her - from curiosity to extreme amazement.
And yet our perception of beauty is changing: the fashion for dyes imitating gray hair swept the world a few years ago, and a new social habit of accepting their own characteristics encourages more and more people to abandon masking procedures. We talked with six women of different ages who made a conscious decision not to hide their natural gray hair, and they talked about how they themselves treat it and how their peculiarity is perceived in society.
journalist, literary critic
Probably, a life-affirming statement is expected from me that gray hair is not an “age marker”, that it does not “age”, and so on. But I cannot say that: I believe that this is not true, except for those cases when very young people turn out to be gray-haired due to the strange play of nature. The point here is not in objective reality, but in subjective reality, in psychology: a woman with gray hair is simply not instinctively perceived as a "girl."
But the task is not to hide your age - the task is to remain your best self at any age. Your best self: that is, the way you like yourself and only yourself - don't give a damn about the rest - right now. The main dispute in life is the one that you lead with yourself, and it is in this that it is important to reach agreement.
Gray hair is not a sign that you are going with the flow, but, on the contrary, an act: it is much easier and more comfortable to paint when “everyone” is painted
I perfectly remember the moment when I looked in the mirror and realized that I was ready. Not even, not ready - I want to. I do not want to become gray-haired - this is already a consequence - but to accept my adulthood and please myself in this adulthood, I want to take this step. My gray hair appeared when I was about thirty, since then I have dyed my hair, and in order to “turn gray”, I first had to shave my head.
Even if you do not shave, but simply decide that you accept gray hair "as you go", this very decision is a step. Because gray hair is not a sign that you are going with the flow, but, on the contrary, an act: it is much easier and more comfortable to paint when “everyone” is painted. The gray hair of an old woman, busy with work and high life, is perceived by us as a challenge, I even know that in some corporations it is simply prohibited by the "dress code". The latter, for me personally, of course, was another argument for gray hair. Its not so much rejection, but rather the impossibility in our establishment gives such an easy chance to fence ourselves out of a separate place. Be gray-haired in every sense of the word - both for yourself and for others.
video producer of departament agency
My gray hair appeared when I was in school, at the age of fourteen. First of all, this caused surprise, because I did not understand its nature: where did this hair come from? Why? At the same time, there was no stress or negative emotions - gray hair never caused rejection in me. I have been gray-haired for more than ten years, and I was very lucky: during all this time, both from relatives and from strangers, I hear that it is beautiful and unusual. When they meet me, they almost always start with a compliment to my gray hair. And only the grandmother is worried that this is not possible: "ugly", I'm "young"!
From the very beginning, I accepted this as my cool feature, not a flaw. Once I succumbed to the persuasion of my grandmother, completely painting over my gray hair, and immediately regretted it. Everyone probably has some favorite feature. When I dyed my hair, I realized that for me these are my gray hairs, and since then I have not touched them at all. I admit that this may change with age.
I was probably very lucky, but I did not encounter a negative reaction from others. Never
I was probably very lucky, but I did not encounter a negative reaction from others. Never. I came across only people who think that I painted myself like that on purpose - there are a lot of them, by the way! I will never urge other girls not to wear makeup: after all, everyone does as he is comfortable with. There is nothing wrong with someone not liking gray hair, or not liking a natural color. In any question, the most important thing is to find an answer that will satisfy you. If we are talking about hair, then for me it is natural, for someone - hair dyed in blue, and for someone else - their complete absence. Any such choice is fine - as well as the gray hair on my or anyone else's head.
chief editor of mail.ru media projects
My first gray hair appeared when I graduated from university. A diploma, final exams, my first job - and I am an emotional person, I was worried - and this is the result. Although both my grandmother and my mother turned gray early. By the time they were thirty, they were both completely white, so I probably also have a genetic predisposition. When I noticed the first gray hair, I was shocked - it was like snow in the middle of July: I am still a student! On you, as it seemed to me then, such a bright sign of old age. I tried to pull out the gray hair, but three or four new ones appeared in place of one - so I stopped fighting and began to get used to it. I was scared that, like my mother and grandmother, I would become completely white in my thirty years and have to paint. I like my natural color: painting for me is an unpleasant, forced measure, and I tried to postpone it until the last.
When the gray hair became noticeable, I began to receive compliments. Friends said that with gray hair I had a charm. Some thought that I had done the highlighting, and began to praise the master - they say, skillfully and unusual. Once my dad stared at me, looked at me for a long time and asked: "How did you manage to paint so intricately?" Since then, this is his favorite joke.
Once you love yourself for who you are, it's hard to change your mind
Then for the first time I thought that gray hair is not a flaw, but a feature. I looked closely at her - and I liked it; now I cannot imagine my hair without these glimpses. I both notice and do not notice them - on the whole, I'm used to it. Sometimes, under a bright light, they are especially noticeable, and then I think: damn, but beautiful. Once you fall in love with yourself for who you are, it is difficult to change your mind.
Not everyone around me found it easy to accept my gray hair. One of my friends constantly urged me to paint. She said: “I can't look, gray hair is old age! You are too young for gray hair! " Several times she almost knocked me to "at least try" to see how it would be without white hair. Almost: trying to discredit, I interviewed others - as a result, I noticed that gray hair in my environment upsets women rather.
Sometimes we hear people around us better than ourselves. We trust the taste of loved ones more than our own. Look at gray hair as another reason to think about what suits you and what is really "yours".In my case, it happened: at first I was upset that I did not look like everyone else, but now I am a little proud of it. Although “proud” is not the most accurate word, I rather love this feature of mine. The gray hair makes my appearance spectacular - I do not want to give it up.
student of the Literary Institute. Gorky
My gray hair appeared in childhood when I was eight years old. First, small white spots appeared on the skin (vitiligo) - on the left eye and on the forehead - and after them some of the eyelashes and a strand of hair lost their pigment. I was confused only by spots, and gray hair always liked its color. True, for two or three years I had to paint over a strand: my mother did not want to be stared at me, a small child, and I understood her.
I have always liked this feature. During my middle school years, there were several episodes when high school students made fun of me, they said that I was "sick." It is unpleasant when in public places some people begin to stare at a strand for a long time with a slight expression of disgust on their face. But these are all isolated cases that do not hurt me: all my friends and relatives like my gray hair.
If they suddenly tell me that a remedy has appeared that will once and for all relieve me of gray hair, I will not use it
I have never considered it a disease or a disadvantage: I use a lot of cosmetics, trying in vain to hide the white spots around the eye, but if they suddenly tell me that a product has appeared that will once and for all get rid of my gray hair, I will not use it. Surprisingly, out of many of my acquaintances, the only person with prejudices against gray hair was my grandmother, who to this day asks me to paint over a strand, explaining that I "still have time to be gray."
Gray hair is not always an age-related phenomenon: it can appear as a result of pigmentation disorders, be it vitiligo or birthmarks, and as a reaction to severe stress. Each gray hair has its own story: it seems to me that its very color, cold, foggy, is associated with a riddle, a mystery, and this cannot but be fascinating. For me, this is definitely a feature that I am quietly proud of, not a flaw. I would like to wish those who are hiding not to be ashamed of their story.
STUDENT MARCHI, ILLUSTRATOR
Gray hair appeared at about ten years old - the feelings were mixed. It was incredible surprise, but I was rather negative about the acquired feature. At first I did not attach any importance to her, but then she began to annoy me. When I was a child, I was worried that I was different from others, and the gray strand seemed to me ugly, foreign - alien. I even decided to cut it off, hoping that the new hair would be the same color.
I wore a parting for a long time so that the gray hair was almost invisible. I didn’t hide it on purpose: it didn’t bother me, and I didn’t even remember about its existence. Having matured a little, I realized that there was nothing ugly about her. Quite the opposite: gray hair is beautiful in itself and I can say I was lucky that it happened to be in such a good place, right next to my face. Only five or six years ago I stopped hiding it: the strand has become a characteristic, expressive feature of my appearance.
I believe that today everyone can afford to look the way they want
I believe that today everyone can afford to look the way they want to, to dye their hair in any color they like, to be who they want. Someone likes to emphasize naturalness and not hide the ongoing changes, accepting themselves and not being afraid of changes. And someone needs to constantly change and amaze others with their vivid images - in general, this is a matter of temperament. To paint over gray hair or not is the choice of aesthetics that you want to adhere to, and nothing more.
As far as I understand, the appearance of gray hair is genetically determined. My maternal grandfather and mother also had gray hair quite early on. Therefore, when they appeared with me, it was not a surprise, and I was rather proud of it.When you are about twenty-five, and you have a gray strand or a few hairs, on the one hand, it is funny, but on the other hand, it gives you (as you hope) more weight and solidity.
In all the places where I worked, I was the youngest for many years. I started at eighteen in the city administration, then worked in the State Duma, then in a consulting company - and only in the last place appeared not only peers, but at least people conditionally of my generation. Elsewhere, the gap between me and the "youngest employee" was usually fifteen years old. Therefore, it did not occur to me to paint - especially considering that there was always no time. As I was told, once you have dyed, you are then doomed to repeat this procedure every month until your death (well, or so I imagined it), so I always put off this fatal moment for later.
The question is what exactly you can afford: spend time and money on straightening, building, highlighting - or not bother with any of the above
I can't say that I thought for a long time about the peculiarities of my appearance. The essential reason, in general, is clear: my hair was most often long, and the dyeing procedure requires regularity and effort, which I, with my regime, cannot really afford. Well, as you know, if you sit on the river bank for a long enough time, you will wait for a new global trend to float by, coinciding with your personal laziness. Today, they say, people are specially painted in gray. Getting into the trend without additional effort is a profit!
To the credit of the people with whom I communicate personally, none of them pestered me with proposals to change something in my appearance. And when I became a public person, then, of course, kind commentators from time to time began to write something like: "Would you like to paint?" Or: "Let there be less worries and less gray hair!" Apparently, it is assumed that I turned gray from thinking about Russia - it was then that my head turned white overnight, as they say in the novels.
According to my observations, the older generation, those whose youth fell in the 70s and 80s, generally have special aesthetic ideas: they are accustomed to brighter makeup, eyes, stilettos and a “theatrical” image in general. Modus "put on her makeup to go take out the trash" is from there. The idea that one can walk with an unpainted head, accordingly, seems somewhat wild to them. Younger people show perhaps a broader range of acceptability. Although an alternative opinion is also possible: the point is not in the generation, but in the sociocultural paradigm. In a way, both the gilded curls in shimmery polish and the “I woke up like that” hairstyle carry a similar message: “I can afford it.” The question is what exactly you can afford: spend time and money on straightening, building, highlighting - and what else they do there - or not bother with any of the above.
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