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Old 03-12-2009, 10:37 AM   #1
 
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Default Gray Hair - Highlight or color less damaging

Hello,

I am starting to get a lot of grey hair. I have been highlighting hair for the last couple of years to cover it. I have dark brown curly spirals. The highlighting has definately made my hair less curly and more straw like. I guess I am wondering if coloring it would be less damaging? or more? Does anyone know?
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Old 03-12-2009, 12:24 PM   #2
 
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I gave up highlighting and switched to coloring. To me it seems less damaging. Bleach takes the curl out of my hair. Although I have since learned how to better take care of my hair.
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Old 03-13-2009, 01:36 PM   #3
 
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I have dark hair with lots of gray coming in too. And although "they" say you should go lighter as you go grayer because it blends in better and makes the gray easier to hide, and that it's more flattering as you get older, coloring is much less damaging than highlighting.

Besides, I really have always loved having dark hair! I don't care if I "should" be going lighter at my age - I'll color my gray as long as I have to.
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Old 03-14-2009, 07:36 AM   #4
 
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"I have dark hair with lots of gray coming in too. And although "they" say you should go lighter as you go grayer because it blends in better and makes the gray easier to hide, and that it's more flattering as you get older, coloring is much less damaging than highlighting.

Besides, I really have always loved having dark hair! I don't care if I "should" be going lighter at my age - I'll color my gray as long as I have to." - LisaF1163

I agree with you! The only thing you "should do" is what you want!
My natural haircolor was very dark brown - in fact, it was the last shade of brown before hitting black, and would look black in photos. The old rule about "going lighter" as one ages is to a certain extent true, but one thing that a lot of people, including more old-school colorists get into is the mistaken idea that all older women should be some sort of blonde, or at the very darkest, a very light golden brown, no matter what their previous hair color was - ugh! More modern colorists tend to go with assessing the natural amount of contrast between a woman's skin tone and haircolor, and adjust accordingly. If someone had a high contrast between hair and skin, she is going to look really washed out if she goes too light. In this case, lightening up by only a shade or two works a whole lot better than just going for that generic blonde or light brown color. But for someone whose contrast between skin and hair is lower, a softer, lighter look can work, often by 3 shades or so.
Personally, I never went for the highlights, since I didn't think they would suit me - and I do my own coloring jobs with -gasp! - PERMANENT color(which a lot of people don't seem to like around here)to a rich reddish brown that suits my warm coloring, but at the same time is not too light. I know for a fact that that generic blonde look that seems to be so popular would not suit me at all, and would make me look LESS distinctive, at my age(61). And no, my rich haircolor that I do is not "too dark"! IMO, it seems that the recommendation for some blah, light haircolor for older women is to make them less distinctive and just disappear into the woodwork instead of finding their own good look - just a thought here!
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Old 03-14-2009, 03:32 PM   #5
 
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i've used dark dyes since i first felt the need to cover the grey and it works just fine.
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Old 03-14-2009, 04:23 PM   #6
 
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I agree with the others that you don't have to go lighter just because you are getting gray or getting older. If you want to go lighter--and it looks good on you-- it does show less outgrowth less quickly than against dark hair. But if you are like me, light hair is not flattering, regardless of the fact that I get visible gray outgrowth within about a week. Anyway, I use Color by Robert Craig, which is a permanent deposit-only product that is very gentle. It does not lift color--no ammonia, peroxide to do so.

Something to remember, no matter what brand you go with, choose a color 2-3 shades lighter, as porous curly hair tends to grab color and get dark quickly. And be sure to strand test.
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Old 03-18-2009, 12:07 PM   #7
 
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I go to a beauty supply and buy my hair coloring. I do not NOT NOT use drug store hair color. If you buy professional hair color there are additives you can put in it to make it less damaging to your hair.

Here's my coloring routine....

1) DO NOT wash your hair for 24 hours before. 2 days before coloring, do your hot oil or hair masque.


2) I get the Loreal Excellence Creme, Loreal Oreor 30 Vol developer (I have very resistant grey) but most people can probably use the 20 Vol. I mix it according to package directions. However, to that I add 1 packet of "Care and Comfort" which is a pH buffer that helps to protect my hair and scalp. I add a packet of a Grey additive that helps the color penetrate my resistant grey hair. I also add a packet of conditioner additive and a packet of protien filler that helps to seal the color in.

3) I color my hair for the recommend 30 minutes and not one second longer. I get in the shower and rinse, rinse, rinse.

4) Rinse really well and apply Feria after color conditioner. Let that set for 5 minutes and rinse.

5) Condition with my normal conditioner.

6) Apply Fermodyl for Curly hair. This is a re-texturizer that helps to seal the hair shaft after coloring.

7) Add product and style as usual.

DO NOT get your hair wet for at least 3 days after coloring to allow the color to stablize.
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Old 03-19-2009, 11:02 AM   #8
 
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Hi There!
I'm a 3c/4a naturally curly with very fine, soft hair. I have gray hair around my hairline,and some more throughout my hair. I just colored my hair over two weeks ago, but it only "took" where my gray hair was, it didn't take on the rest of my hair!! This has happened before! A few times I have used the protein filler and the color took better, but my grays still came back after two weeks!! I have used both store bought color and professional color(from Sallys)
but the grays still stage a comeback!! I have extremely resistant grays, and my color always fades! (I have very dark brown hair) I usually use black but this time I used darkest brown. Anyway, what do I do now???? This is driving me crazy! Thanks for your help!!! Curly47 Robin

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Old 03-20-2009, 09:40 AM   #9
 
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If you're using professional color from Sally's please post *exactly* what you used - color, developer, and additives.
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Old 03-26-2009, 10:58 AM   #10
 
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Hmm-I don't remember exactly, it was sometime last year.
I used the Clairol haircolor,the white cream developer(I don't think it was strong enough),and the liquid protein filler that I had to leave on for 20 minutes. Anyway, my grays are extremely resistant, so I probably should have used a stronger developer. I just recently used a drugstore product for Black women, Dark and Lovely. So, I'm not coloring my hair anymore, I just want to get rid of the gray hair. I'm leaving it my natural color and using one of those haircolor sticks. Thanks! Robin
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Old 03-27-2009, 06:05 AM   #11
 
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FYI, you should always keep careful records of what hair color products you have used on your hair. Your lot numbers and all that stuff are important to keep. That way if you have an issue, like what you're reporting, other people are able to help you with it.

I tend to find that the Clairol products are very drying.

Honestly, for you curlies, I would recommend starting with 10 volume developer and seeing how your hair takes the color. If you have grey, make sure you add a grey-covering additive. If that doesn't work for you, then try upping developer.

Its the developer that's so damaging to your hair.
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Old 03-31-2009, 10:30 AM   #12
 
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Thanks for the info!! You are certainly correct, I should have kept records, and the developer was probably too weak. But I'm through with it now. I love my natural color, I just want to keep the gray away! Thanks again for your help! Robin
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Old 04-16-2009, 02:58 PM   #13
 
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Default Help! In need of a good Hair-Color Product for a graying 4a?

Hi Folks:

I have recently started to let my hair grow (used to wear it in a brushable-short style - natural) in hopes that I can grow a nice & healthy afro. I've just recently learned my hair-type - 4A (from this site). Most of my gray is concentrated around my edges, although I have noticeable gray thorough my hair. I wanted to conceal the gray, so I used HiRez "Brazen Bronze" thinking I could blend the gray. Although that lightened my hair (much more than I wanted), it isn't really helping to conceal the gray. My natural hair-color is a kind of "Dusty-Black" and my skin tone is a medium brown. Does anyone have a recommendation for a hair color product that colors gray and can give me a light-to-medium brown hair-color? I have been doing a little research and was thinking that maybe a Henna product may work for me. Thanks in Advance...
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Old 04-17-2009, 03:37 PM   #14
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by curly47 View Post
Thanks for the info!! You are certainly correct, I should have kept records, and the developer was probably too weak. But I'm through with it now. I love my natural color, I just want to keep the gray away! Thanks again for your help! Robin
Depending on your hair color, a rosemary rinse might blend your grey out.
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