Where did the gray hair go?

Seems nobody has gray hair anymore. Everybody dyes it. First all the women did it and now I am seeing ads aimed at men to dye the gray from their hair.
If you watch old movies, you see a lot of stars with gray. You think the character/actor is 60, but you look it up on imdb and they were only 45!

The only place where gray isn’t gone is on the news. Looking older makes you look more serious. Gray=gravitas. Even Jon Stewart, the number one fake newscaster has seriously gray hair. I think Anderson Cooper, who is only around 40, dyes it gray because nobody would take a 40 year old with a boyish face seriously.

I can say all this because I am a 29 year old man. I don’t have any gray yet. If my hair is like my father’s, then I won’t have much gray. He is almost a year older than my mom, doesn’t dye it. I already have my dad’s receding hairline. If I have my mom’s hair, then I will be seriously gray in about 5 years. My mom’s hair would be pure white by now if she didn’t dye it. Maybe I have a combo and have receding white hair.

I think there is nothing wrong with gray or looking one’s age.

My questions for the Dope are: do you have gray hair? Do you dye? Are you a newscaster? What do you think about the lack of gray hair(artificially) in our society?

Coincidentally, I just dyed my hair today. I’m 30 and I found my first grey hair at 14. I have two solid grey patches at my temples and random silver hairs threaded throughout, and I think my grey hair ages me, hence the dye (been dyeing since I was in my early 20s). If I had a cool white streak in my bangs, I wouldn’t dye it, nor if my hair were uniformly white. I used to work with a woman in her 30s who had gone prematurely white and she looked stunning.

And, no, I’m not a newscaster. :slight_smile:

To be honest, I haven’t noticed the dearth of grey-haired folk in the recent media, but I’ll pay more attention.

There was no gray on my mom’s side. On my dad’s side, my grandpa was just barely gray at the temples when he died at 68, my dad is currently slowly going salt and pepper as he enters his mid-50s, and his younger brother is late 40s, no gray. His other brother, though, was completely gray by ~30.

So the odds are on my side, but if I lose, I lose big.

I think I’d wear it as a badge in my 40s or 50s but if I went gray in my 30s I would probably seriously consider dying it.

I’m 62, and the only gray is in my sideburns and goatee. The top is still dark, with maybe 3 gray hairs.

I’m in my late 40s and have had some gray hair since my mid-30s, and I love it. I wish it would all turn gray, but I’ll probably go to my grave with more brown hair than gray, if my nearly 80-year-old mother is any indication. Interestingly, I dyed it throughout my youth, but once it started turning gray (and I realized I had no idea what my natural color was), I stopped dying it and never regretted it.

My husband is mostly gray and starting to go seriously bald, and I would be hugely disappointed in him if he did anything to change either condition. I was aware when I married him that he’d age eventually, as would I, and it’s comforting to me to see us keeping pace on the journey.

I suppose dying away the gray is just another way to pretend you’ll live forever, but if it makes people feel better (and is not taxpayer-subsidized), it’s fine with me.

BTW, I’m not a newscaster (nor do I play one on TV).

My hair is streaked with grey and has been for twenty years.

I dont have any gray hair yet but my boyfriend (mid 20s) already has some scattered gray hair and I’m fine with it. Gray is just another color. :slight_smile:

My hair started thinning seriously when I was in my late 30s, while I was having some health problems. Once I had that under control, it started going rapidly gray. So now, in my late 40s, I have rather thin hair that’s gray at the hairline and top of my head. I dyed it for a few years, but because I didn’t want to be obvious, I went to a salon to have it “low-lighted” - I had sections of it dyed to match the part that’s still brown and left in enough gray to make it look plausible. About a year ago, I got tired of the trouble and expense of having that done and let it all grow out gray. I’d be fine with that, except that, especially in bright light, the gray hair on top turns almost transparent and I look look like I have even less hair than I do.

I don’t care all that much about whether or not it makes me look older, but I do think it’s a little unfair that I have more gray hair than my 78-year-old mother.

To myself and Purgatory Creek:

Dying is what Ted Kennedy is doing. Dyeing is coloring your hair.

My BF is going gray at the temples, and I think it’s insanely hot. Gray temples and gray beard streaks give that “experienced gentleman” look. Experienced gentlemen are sexy.

I don’t think Anderson Cooper dyes his hair. Do you have a cite for that?

I’ve known people who went totally gray in their 20s. My grandfather was 100% white hair at 28. It just happens that way for some people.

No gray here! I think I’m taking after my aunt who was well over 60 before she had any gray. My mom grayed in her 40s and never colored it. My dad has just recently started with a bit more “salt” in his salt-and-pepper and he’s 79.

In my 7th grade yearbook there is a picture of a guy a year above me with honest to god gray hair. So it’s possible to go gray at a far younger age than however old Anderson Cooper is.

In my high school there was a girl with very dark brown hair who was going prematurely gray, with many individual silver hairs randomly interspersed with the brown. It looked fabulous and I was dying (not dyeing) to get hair like hers. My hair isn’t quite as near-black a brown as hers was, but finally, as I approach 50, I’ve got enough grey to get that high-contrast silver-against-darkness look. I love it and wouldn’t dream of coloring it.

My husband was about 22 when we met and he already had grey - he’s been totally white-haired for years and I like it because his original hair color was so nondescript. Come to think of it, it was dark grey all along - pencil-lead color. The white is much nicer.


I’ve been going gray for as long as I can remember. I now have more gray than not. I received a bottle of Grecian Formula for my 40th birthday and tried it, but I didn’t notice a difference and stopped using it.

If you saw me you’d see gray hair. Where I still have hair on my head, about a third of it is gray. Another third is white. The rest is a sad remnant of the original color. I’m ok with the way I look. I don’t dye my hair, I don’t combover, and I’m not getting a toupee or hair transplants.

45M, a few grey hairs. Too lazy to dye.

One thing, though: I decided to grow a goatee. It has proportionally a lot more grey than my head. There’s a patch, off to one side. Looks goofy. Oh well.

While we’re on the topic…is grey the American spelling and gray the British?

The obligatory “Don’t think grey can’t be sexy” image:


She could cast my news any day.

I’ve been greying (the British spelling, lobotomyboy63) since my early twenties. I did dye it once and sometimes think about doing so again, but there are problems: (1) it’s difficult to make it look natural (2) for the first week or so, people who knew you before will point and laugh (3) once you’re committed to being non-grey, you have to keep attending to it. Nothing looks worse than brown with grey roots.

The other thing is that while grey hair may age you, if you go grey relatively young it means you get to look the same age for about thirty years, which is quite cool. When you’re sixty people will still think you’re fifty, because you’ll look about the same, so to an extent it averages out [/wishful thinking].

Steve Martin, for instance…

The other way around.