I have had some gray hair since I was 16 years old. No, seriously, I'm not exaggerating. It's hereditary. As a matter of fact, my mom was born with a lunar (I don't even know how to explain that in English so I hope you know what I'm talking about) on her scalp and ever since she was a little girl has had a small stripe of white hair that frames her face. It's very Rogue in X-men. I've always really loved it, so I didn't freak when my hair started sprouting the grays--in fact, I embraced it, hoping one day it would turn into my own bad ass super hero stripe. Alas, it did not. I was just sort of going gray.


It didn't multiply the way it does when we naturally age, but now that I am 31, I definitely notice that I have a lot more. In my mid to late 20s I refused to dye my hair because I actually felt like people were taking me more seriously in a work environment cause of my grays (I have a bit of a youthful face). But now that I'm officially 30-something, me and hair dye are having an intense love affair.

Currently, I am obsessed with the ombre highlighting techniques (seriously, you have no idea the sick amount of video tutorials I've watched on this) but apparently, the decision for many women of whether or not they should dye their hair comes down to economics, not aesthetics.

Stephanie Martinez Kluga, a manager for a Houston-based company that provides human resources services to small and medium-size businesses told USA Today that going gray can in the office can still be risky for women:

While the Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967 was created to protect employees 40 years of age and older, some men and women may still encounter ageism in the workplace. The long-standing perception that men with gray hair are experienced and women with gray hair are simply old may still be an issue that affects employees in workplaces across the U.S.

Why are men allowed to be silver foxes while us women are just old hags? It's ludicrously unfair!

The fabulous Anne Kreamer, former Nickelodeon exec turned writer addresses the controversy head on (haha, see how I did that?) in her book Going Gray. She deems the different treatment women have to contend with "hair-colorism" and knowingly points out that in the 1950s only about 7% of women dyed their hair, whereas now almost 95% do! That's crazy talk!

"When women were going to work, it was like they could reinvent themselves and say, 'I'm no house frau anymore.' Hair dye got kind of linked in there and we never looked back," Kreamer told the paper. "It's still very complicated."

You can say that again!

Do you dye your hair? Do you think it's fair for people in the workplace to discriminate against women who are going gray?

Image via Thinkstock

About the author

Mariela is the Managing Editor of Mamás Latinas. She's also a politics and pop culture junkie and lover of all NY sports teams (except the Mets--'cause really, come on).

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Lauramt
I am just starting to get grey and I am alright with it because I still feel young.

I see many more baby-boomers like me starting to appreciate and love their gray hair. Many of us used to dye it, and at some point stopped. We don't feel like old hags, and if that's how people see us, then that's their problem. Discrimination in any form is not fair, and thankfully I haven't seen or experienced hair-colorism. My 30-something year old daughter says she will never dye her hair. I'm glad because nobody needs those chemicals entering through the head hundreds of times over a lifetime. Quoting the "Going Gray Blog", gray is the new black. :)

marip...

@Betina Martínez  I LOVE "gray is the new black"!!! Thanks for sharing ;)

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