Gray Hair – What Color Should You Dye It?

Dying grey hair and getting just the right shade, be that blonde or dark, is tricky. So when a reader emailed for help, I  got  Celebrity Hairstylist Billy Lowe to jump in with some expert advice.  Read on…

Deborah, please help me! The most frustrating thing is my gray hair! I started with long hair past my shoulders, and everyone keeps cutting it, dying it dark and tons of highlights, which my husband likes, but I find it very drying.  

Everyone keeps trying to return my hair to the natural hair color, which was medium reddish-brown, and my hair is so thick, that it looked very dark at times.   For my last haircut, the girl dyed it black, with red highlights, wow that is going to look pretty when the grey grows in?

I was told by a co-worker to go as light as possible and let the grey grow in and maybe highlight and/or lowlights?  Please help with hairstyle/color/highlights that would look the best on me.  Thanks! Keep up the excellent work. I need you!    Karen J.

Gray Hair Dye for Women


Billy’s reply: Dear Karen, Thank you for reaching out. My first thought is this – if you are going with lighter strands – especially around the face, you want to be sure to accentuate your eyes, lips, and brows, and perhaps wear larger accessory/jewelry pieces around the neckline (chunky necklaces, etc.), so your face doesn’t disappear.

Without the contrast, and if hair color blends in with skin too closely, then things start to disappear. Secondly, if you are going with the darker color, know that there’s greater contrast between that color and the regrowth.  So the regrowth will be a lot more evident.   Catch 22, I know. I  like both looks on you, but feel the lighter color suits your personality a bit more – as clear in the photos.

Going “Heather Locklear blonde” could be an option but have you tried on any hairpieces to see what you think, and perhaps get responses from friends that might want to go along?   That’s always a safe bet because there are countless options when it comes to color and endless possibilities in color formulations.  Baby-steps.

Try on some fun hairpieces, and see what you think.   But if I had to choose, I’d pick the Karen with the soft brunette and the highlights strapped through.   Fun, brilliant, and fabulous. In beauty, Billy Lowe Be sure to visit Billy’s beauty blog at for more great hair tips.

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3 thoughts on “Gray Hair – What Color Should You Dye It?

  1. I went grey in my early thirties and tried using that Alma natural product for the first few years. Maybe it was just hair color, but it failed to cover the grey. I wish there were other options, but unfortunately, I now use chemical-based dyes – they seem to work the best! Great article,

  2. I’m emailing 2 photoshop images of hair color changes I made for Karen. Nothing overly professional, just an idea of a lighter color and a deeper, more red/auburn shade (which seems to look nice).

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