8 simple tips for transitioning to natural hair while your going gray.

gray hair

Eliminate shampoos containing sulfates.

4. Eliminate products that indelibly coat the hair.

Eliminate conditioning and styling products with silicone, heavy waxes, mineral oil or paraffin. That means most products in the Ethnic Hair section at the drugstore whose first or second ingredients are mineral oil. Follow a no shampoo method, and after 2 to 4 weeks you will start to notice the difference.

5. Let your clean, uncoated hair soak up moisturizing conditioner goodness.

Splurge on rich, moisturizing, detangling conditioners and deep conditioners with balanced moisture and protein and use with every wash to restore gloss and shine to your gray hair. Condition often with completely water-soluble conditioners and leave-ins. Cool water rinse, leaving some conditioner in, or add some back after the rinse. Then “seal” that conditioner in hair with natural oils, butters and soft gels.

If you can go a day or two without re-cleansing, maintain softness and moisture on your dry hair with a small amount of product like Devacurl Set it Free or Qhemet Burdock Root Butter Cream.

6. Treat your hair from the inside out.

The second rule of going gray is to improve the health of your hair from the inside out. Effective treatment starts within your body. A medical check-up, exercise, good nutrition, vitamins and mineral supplements will all help enhance the look and feel of your gray, natural, curls, coils and kinks.

As women age and enter perimenopause, there is more going on than just the hair turning gray. Our hormone levels -- the building blocks that regulate almost every function of our bodies -- drop drastically and continue to drop throughout and after perimenopause. This can cause the hair to thin -- along with mental fuzziness, breast pain, weight retention, digestive and bowel issues, food cravings, migraines, drier and less elastic skin, lowered sex drive, vaginal dryness, interrupted sleep cycles, hot flashes, night sweats and more.

The good news is that hair loss due to decreased hormones is usually temporary, especially if you modify your diet and lifestyle to increase hormone consumption and improve circulation.

7. Get a check-up that includes testing hormone and thyroid levels

Get a thorough medical checkup with an endocrinologist, gynecologist or hormone specialist who understands the issues aging women face and can recommend several options to treat perimenopausal as well as possible thyroid symptoms, which also cause hair loss. Many doctors just think menopause is our cross to bear. Back away from those doctors quickly.

8. Add nutritional supplements.

Eat foods containing phytoestrogens, cruciferous vegetables, and soy isoflavones. Because there are many healthy hair benefits of Omega 3, you should take supplements containing Omega-3s and magnesium, as well as probiotics.

With knowledge, determination, and care, your transition to natural hair and gray, curly locks can be a beautiful one.

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Karen McIntosh
Good article. I agree with everything in this blog except for the need to BC. I think it is stressful enough to go natural from a relaxer or texturizer without also having to "go bald" or BC with short short hair. If you need to moisturize your hair anyway, why would going gray make it any more difficult? I think the most difficult thing about going natural and gray at the same time is the assumed hairstyle choices. The photo for this article shows a short curly afro. I don't want to wear a short curly or kinky (4B/C) afro. It is lovely on the model but I'd rather wear graying braids. I'd like more information on this website about the best options for coloring your hair while transitioning from chemically altered hair to natural if you wish to do so. I admit I need to look around. I may find that article and still decide graying and natural are a lovely combo and don't require a BC. Thank you for the space to make my comments.