Do people really believe that your hair just spontaneously and rapidly turns gray, from stress or poltergeists or I guess becoming the president of the United States? I think that’s bullshit, though admittedly, I don’t have the energy to look for scientific backup this very second (ok, it only took a few seconds to find this Slate debunking tidbit).
I’ve stressed off and on for years over my encroaching gray strands, more like clumps, at this point. And every so often I vow to grow it out natural, just for shits and giggles not so much to prove some point. This time I’m serious. I haven’t colored it since December and going to try my hardest to not touch it until I can see what’s really happening on my head. From a not-so-flattering face forward mug shot you can’t see the gray yet.
But when I lift up my hair, I have a solid inch of silver, no brown in sight (you can click if you desire larger gruesomeness). I may be 90% gray. That does scare me. Forget the undeniable hippy, earth mother look; there’s no way around the fact that gray hair ages you plain and simple. No matter how young and cute a face may look, having white hair will make you appear older than having brown hair. I’m thinking of women like Marisa Tomei and Mary Louise Parker, females in their mid-40s who look really good. They have nice skin and figures but you wouldn’t even pay attention to those attributes if they had gray hair. I’m nearly a decade younger than both of them and I’m not ready to embrace my inner elderly woman.
So, I’m treating this like an experiment with the idea that there’ll be an end date. I’m just not sure what my milestone will be. I like setting up rules. I could grow it out until I go on vacation maybe at the end of April but that’s not very extreme, maybe until I lose 15 pounds (supposedly normal weight for my height) which may never ever happen (I’d gladly take five and call it a day, I would have absolutely no problem being ten pounds overweight), maybe until my birthday in July, maybe until the end of 2009. I’m not strong, I almost broke down and dyed it this weekend.
I plan to take a photo the first week of every month to see how noticeable the white strands really are. Or maybe I’ll just get really spooked by a ghost and the whole thing will turn white overnight. That’d save a lot of unnecessary hand wringing.