Tuesday, 4 July 2017

Three reasons why I don't colour my hair

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Disclaimer:  I shouldn't need to say this, but the internet being what it is, I thought I'd make it clear from the outset:  This topic is totally about people making a choice for themselves, based on what works for them.  There is no right or wrong, good or bad, or judgement to be made.  What I choose for myself is not a judgement about anyone else's choices.  
Now....back to our scheduled program.....

"You should think about colouring your hair," was the not so subtle suggestion I received from a hairdresser some 10+ years ago, now.

You see, grey hair runs in my mother's family the same way that male baldness runs in my Dad's.  Since I'm not a boy, I'm fairly safe with that one, but not so much they grey.   My maternal grandfather was absolutely white in his 50's.  My mother was not quite as white, but not far off in her 60's.  At any given age, she has been more grey than I have been.  I first noticed my own one or two greys in my early-mid twenties, and they've been gathering steam ever since (my mother noticed her own in her teens - I had a good 10 years on her!).  Right back then I knew I needed to make a decision.  To dye, or not to dye.

I chose not to dye my hair.  Ever.

Back then it was simple reasoning:  if I go grey one hair at a time, it won't be quite so obvious, compared to if I dyed my hair and then decided to stop.  That difference would be quite stark.  Since then I have developed a more considered reasoning.  So here are three reasons I don't dye my hair (or intend to start!).

1.  It's expensive
I am nothing if not practical, and I have experienced numerous times of financial stress in my life.  It was not long after that comment from the hairdresser that we had to buckle down and hold our financial breath.  Spending on anything that was not absolutely necessary just did not happen.  In fact, I think I had my Mum cut my hair a time or two during that season of our life (she had cut half the town's hair when we lived overseas - it was a safe, cheap option).

2.  It's a time commitment
Not only the sitting in the hairdresser's chair, but also how often you need to visit the hairdresser.  I have long hair, so I don't need to go any more often than once a quarter and can get away with longer if I cut my own fringe.  Again, the practical side of me is inclined to shun anything that requires upkeep more often.  It's also part of the reason I've never been able to have my hair in a short style for more than about a year.  Hair appointments every six weeks?  Nope.  Too much like hard work to my way of thinking.  I'm terrible at being a girl sometimes!  And again, the money.

3.  Sensitive Skin
Perhaps the most persuasive reason I don't dye my hair is because of my skin.  I am so sensitive to normal chemicals people use.  Things like dishwashing liquid, hand soap, household cleaners, perfumed hand creams.  You name it, I avoid it.  As an example, my current hand moisturiser is a non-frangrance one, and if you're read here for a while, you know I've had a major eye sensitivity to something in make-up this year.  Given all that, frankly I've been too scared to try dying my hair.  If I'm that sensitive to regular stuff I can only imagine I'd been on The Project or A Current Affair as an extreme examples of chemical burns and rashes and swelling everywhere.  If regular people get a little irritated, I don't want to think about what that would look like for me.

So I don't even consider dying my hair.  I think more than a choice, it's probably just not an option.  And I'm totally OK with that.

What about you?  Do you colour your hair?  Or not?  Do you wish you'd made a different choice at some point?


Six Little Hearts said...

Good on you for being so sensible.
I have a little grey hair. Thankfully both of my parents went grey very late in life so I have a double dose of that goodness. I do dye my hair at the hairdressers. I consider it a 6-weekly treat for myself.

Bron Maxabella said...

I am loving that going silver is more and more popular... but it's not for me. I have red hair and I just don't know if I would feel like 'myself' without it.

Alicia - OneMotherHen said...

I have a streak of grey hair that's slowly getting bigger of the years. I noticed it when I had my second child at the end of my thirties. I don't dye my hair a lot, mainly because it is expensive and it takes a looong time. By the time I have finished by tea and read a mag, I am ready to go home lol.
I made a decision a while ago to visit the hairdresser for a cut, and if I felt the need to dye, I would do it myself at home, or maybe bother my sister to do it!

Left-Handed Housewife said...

I color my hair, and have since my mid-thirties. I wish my hair would just go all silvery gray, because I love how that looks, but right now if I don't color it, it's just an unattractive salt and pepper. It's vanity, yes, and one day I'll quit, but for now it makes me happy and is worth the money.


Janet Camilleri said...

The upkeep would drive me bonkers ... fortunately I haven't needed to think about it yet, though I do get blonde foils 2 or 3 times a year, but they still look okay even when growing out.

Nicole Cox said...

I have a head of grey hair, have done so since I was 25ish. I haven't the confidence to pull it off just yet though. I love that you have found a decision you are comfortable with and that your hairdresser respects your decision.