Does Anyone Else Pluck Out Their Gray Hairs?

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You know that phrase “Secret Single Behavior” that Carrie Bradshaw once used to describe the odd things we do when we’re completely alone? (Hers was putting grape jelly on a stack of Saltines and eating them in the kitchen while reading fashion magazines...which, to me, seems like a fine thing to do in the company of others.)

My recent SBB is searching for gray hairs and plucking them out ruthlessly. In standstill traffic, my eyes dart to the rearview mirror looking for any signs of silver. In my bathroom, I’ll part my hair to one side, and then the other, searching for any glimmer of gray to attack with my tweezers. Sometimes I’ll be at my desk, stuck on a sentence, and I’ll pause to pull out a little hand mirror I have nearby to examine my scalp for incoming grays.

And before you tell me that plucking one gray hair will cause two to grow in its place, I assure you that’s completely untrue. What will happen is I may cause permanent scarring and damage to my precious hair follicles, which can affect their ability to grow new hairs in the future. Knowing this, it’s still hard for me to stop, mostly because there aren’t too many grays to pluck yet. (Seeing my genes, that’s bound to change in the next few years).

So, what is it about my gray hairs that makes me want to get rid of them? Well, for starters, they’re extremely satisfying to pluck out. And if I were to dig just a few inches deeper, it feels like low hanging fruit in the never-ending quest to stop time. Intellectually and morally, I aspire to get older and do so with ease, but as the early signs of aging begin to show up in the form of a fine line here or a wiry gray there, I find myself putting up a fight. It’s not quite an MMA match, but a scuffle, nonetheless.

I realize that someday I won’t be able to pluck out a few grays and call it a day. Someday, God willing, I’ll live long enough to have more gray hairs than not, and at that point, I’ll have to decide between dying them or leaving them alone. You know, on second thought, I’d like to go with option three: Become a snazzy pink-haired elder who wanders the streets of L.A. with a twinkle in her eyes.

Why Does My Dad’s Decision to Go Gray Bother Me So Much?

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Beauty Director

Jenny Jin is PureWow’s Beauty Director and is currently based in Los Angeles. Since beginning her journalism career at Real Simple magazine, she has become a human encyclopedia of...