Women start to get their first grey hairs at 33.
That’s what a British study conducted by Charles Worthington Instant Root Concealer is telling us all.
Redheads may spy their first silver strands at 30, while brunettes go grey at 32 and blondes at 35.
Despite that however, very few women actually embrace the grey. And as this next post reveals, the result of those endless hairdresser appointments is a perception from young people that women don’t go grey until they’re Betty White’s age.
By MARY WARD
“I wonder when my mum will start to go grey?”
This was the question my twenty-something-year-old friend asked that first made me question everything I knew about females and follicles.
I was stumped: Um? 20 years ago?
I managed to suppress my snark.
“What, your mum hasn’t gone grey yet?”
“… Really?” My tone shifted from feigned surprise to poorly masked scepticism. “Why else would she go to the hairdressers so often?”
“I dunno. Because her hair’s short and it grows out of its style easily? For goodness sake, she’s not that old.”
I couldn’t comprehend what she was saying. She didn’t think her mum had gone grey yet? What, did she think her mum was superhuman?
And then it hit me: raised in a world of glossy, eternal youth, my (I should stress: normally very clued-in) friend actually didn’t know at what age women started to go grey.
Not that it’s her fault. Putting the absence of grey-haired women in the public eye aside, hard stats on when women notice their first silver strand are sketchy, and often these numbers are provided not by leading biologists, but hair care brands.
In 2011, John Frieda found that roughly a third of British women had started to go grey before their thirtieth birthday. Most studies find that the majority of women begin greying by the age of 35.
Here’s where it gets weird, because while most women should be starting to go grey before their forthieth birthday, anyone who has stepped outside in the past decade can tell you that they aren’t. Women are fighting grey hair with every ounce of their being – first plucking them, then dying them when faced with the genuine possibility of tweezer-induced baldness. Then they hit 60 and instigate a subtle ash-blonde slow fade to their natural silver. The whole process has seriously distorted the way my generation views ageing.