5 Benefits of Letting Your Hair Go Gray, According to Stylists

These expert tips might convince you to cancel your next hair-dye appointment.

Caring for your hair properly requires life-long learning. Seemingly every decade, your strands undergo a major change, whether that's puberty, pregnancy, or the natural aging process. But one of the most jarring transitions is when the grays start growing in faster than you can color them, and it feels like you're at the salon for a touch-up every two weeks. At that point, you may wonder: should I stop dying my hair? If you need an added push, read on to hear from hair stylists about the key benefits of letting your hair go gray. Their arguments just might persuade you to cancel your next trip to the salon.

READ THIS NEXT: 5 Secrets for Growing Out Gray Hair, According to Stylists.

Your hair will be healthier.

shiny gray hair

It's a simple fact: if you stop dying your hair, it will become healthier. Just think about what happens when you color your strands. According to Healthline, applying dye lifts the hair's protective proteins so the chemicals can penetrate the strand and change its color. While this might result in a dazzling hue, it weakens the hair, which can cause brittleness, dryness, and overall thinning.

According to Ghanima Abdullah, cosmetologist and hair expert for The Right Hairstyles, this is especially true of dying gray hair, which is already more fragile than fully pigmented hair. Grow your hair out in its natural hue, and you'll likely notice a dramatic improvement in its look, feel, and the level of maintenance it requires.

Your scalp health will improve.


After you dye your hair, it's not uncommon for your scalp to be itchy for days. Well, if you stop the dying process, you won't have this problem. According to the National Health Service, an itchy scalp after a hair color appointment is often caused by a chemical in dye called paraphenylenediamine, a known irritant and allergen. "Letting your hair go gray is an effective way to avoid exposing your scalp to toxic ingredients of hair dyes," says Monica Davis, a professional hairstylist and founder of Hair Scream. Instead, your scalp will be calm and free of any rouge dye stains.

READ THIS NEXT: The 5 Best Hairstyles for Gray Hair, According to Experts.

You'll save loads of cash.

hand using chip credit card reader

Deciding to go gray can save you thousands a year. "If you let your natural grays shine through, you can save a lot of money on dyeing your hair and getting touch-ups," says Abdullah. "Even if you don't go to the salon every month, but use a box dye, it can still get expensive." Think about it: skipping a $50 root touch-up once a month can save you $600 each year. You'll also be able to ditch the pricy hair masks, oils, color-depositing toners, and color-safe shampoos that colored hair often requires.

You'll see added dimension.

woman touching gray hair

Going gray isn't only practical—it also creates a stunning aesthetic. "I think grey hair is beautiful," says Jose Rojas, color specialist and regional training artist for Hair Cuttery. "I love the different dimensions; some people have strips of white that look like highlights while others have that Snow White color that every platinum blonde wants." To refine your natural gray color to perfection, chat with your stylist about at-home toning treatments that will boost your strands.

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You'll feel free.

older woman with gray hair smiling on walk
adamkaz / iStock

When it comes down to it, there are countless ways that dying your hair can cause stress. You may worry the color will come out wrong, that you're spending too much money, or that you're not caring for your strands properly. If you let your hair go gray, all that disappears.

Victoria Marie, the producer and director of Gray Is The New Blonde, an award-winning documentary about women and their choice to embrace their gray hair, has a unique perspective. "The word 'freedom' was the most-used adjective the women I interviewed for the film used to describe their feeling after choosing to ditch the dye."

So, if you've been considering canceling that next color appointment, it might be time to give gray a go.

Juliana LaBianca
Juliana is an experienced features editor and writer. Read more
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