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Why Do Our Grays Appear Much Fuller After We Dye Them?

Optical illusion or the real deal? When it comes to our grays (whether stray or all over the place), we’re warned to avoid concealing them in the chance that they’ll grow back much more visible. But, really, do gray hairs grow back fuller once they’re dyed?

The answer is a little complicated, but we’ll leave it to the experts to break it down below.

how to get rid of gray hair | Mane Addicts
(via Unsplash)

Why Do Gray Hairs Grow Back Fuller Once They’re Dyed?

According to Biolage Curl Specialist and celebrity stylist, Cynthia Alvarez, when it comes to this topic, your eyes are playing tricks on you. The grays aren’t actually growing in fuller, but it’s not uncommon for them to look that way.

“Once you start coloring your grays, there will be a stark line of demarcation once your hair starts to grow out,” Alvarez explains. “This causes the grays to really pop.” 

A line of demarcation causes a distinct separation between things. So, in the case of grays, the new emergence of them will seem more distinct because of the drastic difference in color from the other dyed strands.

Additionally, Biolage Global Ambassador and celebrity stylist Sunnie Brook says certain dyes may be the culprit.

“There’s a theory that prolonged exposure to chemicals like hydrogen peroxide (found in hair color) may fade your hair color and cause graying,” she explains. “So, this may attribute to the appearance of fuller-looking gray hair over time—but not immediately.”

How to Potentially Avoid Rapid Growth of Grays

Whether post-dye or otherwise, if you want to potentially slow the process of gray growth, start with incorporating more vitamins and nutrients into your daily regimen.

“Low Vitamin B12, A, and C are notorious for causing loss of hair pigment,” Alvarez explains. “Foods packed with antioxidants, vitamins and nutrients may prevent gray hair, along with other ailments.” 

If all else fails and your grays haven’t entirely taken over your head, you can always “consider switching your part around,” Alvarez suggests.

Pro-Tip to Keep in Mind

If there’s anything we gloriously graying gals have been told, it’s to avoid plucking our strays at all costs. But, Alvarez actually tells us otherwise.

“It’s a myth that if you pluck gray hair, more will grow,” she says. “In fact, if you continuously pluck a random gray hair or two, you’re causing trauma to the follicle, which will eventually cause it to not produce hair at all.”

And with that, BRB—to the mirror we go!

If you’re still on the fence about taking the permanent plunge, HERE are the pros and cons of using four makeup essentials to cover stray grays on dark hair.

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