Sunday, October 30, 2011

Silver Spotlight ~ PIA Gronning

to all you wonderful SILVER FOXES

My story about how I turned grey,well, actually not grey,more what I call Champagne Blond,is really not that exciting.

I did not have to go through that scary process it sounds like a lot of you had to endure.I was kind of Strawberry blond,when I was younger and living in Los Angeles started bleaching my hair without me really noticing it.I am a very out doorsy person,so I did not ever think about protecting my hair.I have only colored my hair once in my whole life and that was for a very well paying job for Clairol.It messed up my hair a lot and it took a few years with highlights and low-lights to get it back into my original color.And after that I said,NO MORE!!!! I guess it kind of gradually turned kind of white/blonde. My 95 years old dad in Denmark is the one always comments on how grey my hair has become over the years........I never noticed it.

I am still working as a model and I have to say I am VERY tired of advertisers always using very young models to model different product.Our age group is a huge demographic and we should be treated with a lot more respect.I feel I now look my best,wrinkles and all,I am turning 62 on Wednesday and I have many more good years to come.

It seems that some people are getting the message though,mostly in Europe.I always gets huge compliments on my hair and am just waiting for the right people to "discover" me and use me for a huge beauty campaign want to go out with a BIG bang.:)

I love hearing all your stories.You are all perfect !!! just strive to be the best you can ............not for the rest of the world,but for YOU.!!!!

PIA Gronning.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

But We Like Our Silver Hair!

Recently I decided to research natural treatments and foods that would keep gray hair shiny and healthy. I Googled various combinations of “natural treatments for gray hair,” “special foods for healthy gray hair,” “diet to maintain gray hair, etc.” I was looking for ways to enhance the silver color, and address the textural differences and dryness that I’ve experienced since my hair began turning gray.

I found plenty of natural treatments and dietary suggestions for maintaining healthy hair in general, but all specific references to gray hair only listed genetic factors and possible health conditions than might cause it, and suggested remedies to prevent, reduce, reverse, or get rid of it. It was as if gray hair was being treated as either the result of “old age,“ or a symptom of deficiency or illness.

There were several products being touted to hide the gray or dye the gray, and a few commercial shampoos and conditioners were available to combat yellowing, like Clairol’s Shimmer Lights, or Aveda’s Blue Malva. But I was seeking suggestions for maintaining healthy gray hair from the inside out. And perhaps there aren’t any natural treatments or foods specifically for gray hair. However, I was disappointed and dismayed at the negative connotations that were being associated with gray hair.

Here are a few excerpts from articles I found ~

As your body ages, your hair may become more white and gray for a number of reasons. The two primary causes of gray hair are prolonged worrying and a reduction of nutrients in your blood. By increasing your intake of certain healthy foods, you can restore some vitamins and minerals in your bloodstream and may be able to prevent and even partially reverse the graying of your hair.

From ~


Is there a Natural Remedy to Reduce or Reverse Gray Hair? I recently heard about supplements and other products that can reduce or reverse gray hair. Is there any truth in these products or are they bogus? Thanks for any input.

There is no scientific evidence that any diet, herb, supplement, or product can reduce or reverse gray hair, however, there are some underlying conditions that may result in premature gray hair

The article then goes on to list conditions that cause hair to turn gray, such as thyroid disorders, Vitamin B-12 deficiency anemia, Vitligo, a condition in which your skin loses melanocytis, early menopause, and smoking cigarettes.

From ~ www,

And then there was a product called REMINEX, guaranteed to reduce gray hair or your money back ~

REMINEX GH™ is now available in the United States without a prescription. Until very recently, most people resorted to messy coloring gel or liquid to cover up gray or premature white hair, yet those results are temporary. Our research studies show its ability to visibly revive dormant hair follicles, lack of pigments and discoloration of gray hair strands due to environment, aging, heredity, B-12 deficiency, Thyroid imbalance and anemia or viruses.

There was page after page of sites for “Gray Hair Remedies,” Gray Hair Prevention,” and “Stop Gray Hair.” I realize that gray hair CAN be genetic, and yes, it CAN be the result of a deficiency, imbalance or illness. But if it’s genetic and we’re destined to have gray hair, why can’t we just accept and love it for its own unique beauty, instead of dying it? And while we must certainly take care of ourselves with proper diet and a healthy lifestyle, is it reasonable to do so because we don’t want our hair to turn gray? Can’t we just do it because we care about our health and we want to feel good? And what if we LIKE our silver hair the way it is?

Aging is a natural process. We should be able to accept, appreciate, and enjoy our looks at every stage of lives. We've earned the right to be confident and comfortable in our skins, now. So why are we constantly pressured to go through life, desperately looking over our shoulders at who we used to be?


Sunday, October 23, 2011

Naturally Beautiful Hair ~ Glorious & Gray!

Many of the Silver Foxes I talk to tell me that, while they love their silver halo, it's sometimes problematic to maintain. Their gray hair tends to be drier, duller, courser, and frizzier than their original hair color. I find that mine is drier, more fragile and baby fine. It breaks off easily and it's not as shiny. So I avoid harsh products and chemicals as much as possible. I like to whip up natural treatments, made out of ingredients straight from the kitchen. They're easy, non-toxic, inexpensive, and amazingly effective. These are a few of my favorites~

This recipe for Organic Sage and Rosemary Rinse is specifically for gray hair. It discourages yellowing, and naturally maintains the color of gray hair.

Organic Sage and Rosemary Rinse


1/2 cup organic dried sage

1/4 cup organic dried rosemary


Simmer rosemary and sage in 2 cups of water for 30 minutes, then steep for several hours.

Apply to gray hair and allow to dry, then shampoo.

Repeat weekly until desired shade is reached, then once a month for maintenance.


Rich Mayonaise Conditioner is not exclusively for gray hair, but it's great for dry, fragile, brittle, or over-processed hair. I like to do this one once a month. It's best if you do it on a day when you're not planning to go out, because it leaves hair a little oily. But the next day, when you wash your hair, it will be soft and shiny!

Rich Mayonaise Conditioner


1 cup mayonnaise (room temperature)

1/2 cup olive oil

3 egg yolks


Blend all ingredients together in a bowl.

Apply thoroughly through your hair adding extra at the ends.

Pile on top of your head and cover with a plastic shower cap and then cover with a towel to keep in the heat from your head.

Leave on for at least 10-20 minutes and then rinse out (not wash).

Makes 1 to 2 hair treatments depending on the length of your hair.


This Apple Cider Vinegar Shine Restorer works to restore luster by removing build up from other hair products. It removes tangles and leaves hair smooth and silky. Depending on your hair type, you may want to use it once weekly, or as often as three times weekly. It may cause minimal dryness to hair, so some people like to condition first, then use the rinse.

Apple Cider Vinegar Shine Restorer


1 cup apple cider vinegar

2 cups warm water. Add a a drop of essential oil if you like.


Apply to hair.

Now you have a few choices. You may rinse it out if you want, or leave the rinse on your hair. Since the vinegar restores natural pH it also helps prevent an itchy scalp. As your hair is drying you will smell vinegar, but once your hair dries, no smell.


And don't forget Hairbrush Cleaning. A dirty hairbrush just puts the dirt and residue back into your clean, conditioned hair. I like a natural boar bristle brush. Boar bristles are easier on hair than cheapie plastic brushes and they redistribute oils throughout hair, boosting shine. They're more expensive, but well worth it.

Natural Hairbrush Cleaner


Make a mix of half water and half vinegar.

Add a drop or two of your favorite essential oil.


Remove old hair from hairbrush.

Soak hairbrush overnight in cleaner.


Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Silver With Style!

Yesterday, I was enjoying my lunch at an outdoor café in downtown Dallas. I noticed an attractive lady sitting at a table near the sidewalk. She was probably in her early sixties ~ slim, fit, and well dressed in a non-ostentatious way. She was wearing a pair of gray Capri pants and a silvery gray tunic top, flat sandals, and an interesting silver and crystal pendant. Her hairstyle was short, spiky, and the same silvery gray color as her tunic. Her makeup was minimal. She sat confidently and comfortably alone, pale blue tinted glasses perched on her nose, thumbing through a magazine while dining on a salad, and sipping occasionally from a bottle of sparkling Pellegrino water.

The above paragraph is an excerpt from a post I’m writing for Food + Clothing + Shelter, that contrasts two very different silver haired women. But for this post in Silver Foxes, I want to concentrate on the lady I just described, because she personifies the kind of person I’m striving to be.

And I’m not just talking about letting her hair go gray. I’m referring to being comfortable in her own skin ~ to feeling un-self-conscious enough to dine in a crowded restaurant alone rather than meekly eating a tuna sandwich in the break-room at work ~ to feeling confident enough to, not only have gray hair, but to makeup and dress to emphasis and showcase it.

As Silver Foxes, we have the opportunity to live by example and demonstrate that gray hair is no longer something we feel the need to cover up. Instead, our silver tresses are something we’re proud of, and wish to enhance. We silver-haired ladies and gentlemen are no longer just grandmas and grandpas baking chocolate chip cookies, knitting afghans, and puttering around in the garden. We’re also going to yoga classes, biking, enjoying successful careers, reading voraciously, writing, going back to school, learning new things, traveling to exciting places, keeping up with current affairs, social issues, and politics, and staying fully engaged in life. And, we're the most fun grandmas and grandpas ever! We’re feeling good, having fun, and doing it with style!

Ladies and Gentlemen ~ Our ranks are growing, and we are a force to be reckoned with!


Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Silver Spotlight ~ Denise O'Neill

Hello - my name is Denise O’Neill. I live in a town called Lisburn in Northern Ireland. I am married and a mum of two teenage children (a daughter who is 19 and a son who is 16) and I work part-time as an administrative assistant in a university college in Belfast. Here is my journey to grey …

It’s funny how aging sneaked up on me and bit me on the (bleep) - lol!

When I reached the milestone of the ‘Big-40’ I thought I still looked ok for my age, so I sailed along merrily continuing to do what I was doing - keeping an eye on my weight, wearing nice clothes and make-up, colouring my hair – just trying to look my best. And, it all worked very well until, at the age of 45, I really took a good look at myself – a really good look. At this time, I was also experiencing the early days of the peri-menopause so things were changing both physically and psychologically for me. I started to notice how old I was beginning to look. My complexion was beginning to change - my skin was beginning to lose its elasticity and fullness, causing more wrinkles to appear and my hair was getting thinner around the front area making my scalp more visible. Bottom line - I was losing my ‘youthful glow’.

When I was younger, my natural hair was a very rich dark brown and I suppose I felt the need to start colouring it at the age of about 35. I always used the same colour, ‘Light Golden Brown’, a semi-permanent colour by Clairol. It did the job of colouring my hair quite nicely and, although it wasn’t the perfect choice of colour, it was the best I could find after I had experimented with other shades. In the early days of colouring I was able to apply the colour every 3-4 weeks. It was quite easy - really no bother to do – and it gave my hair a lovely, shiny finish. But, after a few years, I found that I needed to apply the colour more frequently, with less time between colour applications - the grey roots were showing up more quickly and more abundantly. It had got to the stage where I was putting on colour literally every 2 weeks to get rid of the new grey regrowth coming through. The colour was beginning to look very ‘flat’ and ‘hard’ so I tried putting in a few lowlights to lighten things up a bit. I could see that I was becoming a ‘slave’ to constant colouring and I resented putting chemicals onto my scalp which might not be a healthy thing to do. As I said above, my hair was thinning a bit at the front so the harshness of the colour was making my scalp more visible through the thin hair.

So, one day when I was due to apply the dye I looked at my silver roots and I could see that they were creating a nice glow to my face. They were only very short roots and, as I pulled my hair back tightly from my face, I tried to imagine what they would look like if they were longer – and it looked promising. There and then I decided I would give it a go. I just had to see what I would look like - the REAL ME. I always had the habit of making a note in my diary each time I coloured and the last day I applied dye to my hair was 14 June 2008. When I had made my decision to stop, I entered into that day ‘last day of colour’ – it’s there on record – no more dye!

I went ‘cold turkey’ and it took me about a year, with a lot of patience, to grow out the dyed hair. Firstly, I decided to get my hair cut quite short - it had been in a bob style. During the growing out phase my hair was such a mess, a mixture of the old dyed colour, my new natural dark brown and the grey coming through. I felt that other people were thinking I had I had let myself ‘go’ - that I didn't care about how I looked. Of course this is not true - I really cared! And, being honest, it was so difficult.

At this time, I remember typing in my computer the words ‘grey hair’ into ‘Google’ to see what might come up. I felt the need to search out anything about women and grey hair – information on products, guides and tips about grey hair, pictures of grey-haired women, hair styles for grey-haired women – I was so HUNGRY for information. I searched ‘Amazon’ to see if I could find books on the subject and came across 'Going Gray' by Anne Kreamer and 'Going Grey - Looking Great!' by Diana Lewis Jewell. So, I immediately ordered these two books from the USA. I couldn’t wait for them to arrive. I devoured the books, digesting everything I could about the subject and was so glad to discover that there were other grey-haired women in the world and that it was actually becoming quite fashionable in the US, that these two authors were trailblazers and that we, in the UK were so far behind everyone else. I was so glad of the support of these two books (thanks Anne and Diana) and, during difficult times of my transitional phase, I would look at the pictures contained in them and read them to inspire me to keep going. And, they did!

I stuck with growing out the dye and every time I had a new cut I could see the grey/white strands of hair shining through more and more (especially round my face like a light). It was like a metamorphosis. I felt so free - free of the shackles of colour - free to be the real me. It wasn’t just the outer look that felt free but inside I was changing too.

Once I had grown out my dyed colour, I quickly learned that it is not enough to go grey and expect to wear the same colours in clothing and make-up. I had to look at my colour palette and discovered that I could no longer wear warm autumnal colours like browns, creams, beige, green and yellow because these simply did not go with grey. In fact, they looked terrible with my grey hair! I had to re-stock my wardrobe with cool colours to match my new look, ie black, charcoal, certain blues, aubergine, purple, certain pinks, white. The bottom line for me was to avoid colours that contain any warm yellowy tones

I had to look at my make-up and learned to highlight my face so that it did not look washed out. I use a slightly lighter foundation both in colour and texture, some pink/natural blusher, smokey/taupey/silvery eye shadows, charcoal grey eyeliner, black mascara, and pink/natural lipstick. I learned to define my eyes and lips so that they stand out but in a natural way to complement the lighter hair around my face.

I found that had to change my hair products in order to care for my new grey hair, using a shampoo specifically for grey hair at least once a month (or just when I notice that it needs done) and using a regular shampoo to keep it clean and moisturised. I found that the texture of my new grey hair was quite fragile so I had to avoid using electric straighteners (as much as possible) which can be damaging.

So, now I am a 48 year old woman who is grey and proud – yes, GREY AND PROUD! I will NEVER dye my hair again. I feel I look more natural. It's funny how, if you let nature do its own thing, everything is harmonious. My eyes, skin and hair match just the way nature intended.

In June 2011, I discovered Facebook. I had actually toyed with the idea of joining up for quite some time but felt a bit shy and reserved about doing it. But, with the encouragement from my daughter I gave it a go. Then, in early July I did the same thing I did 3 years’ ago in ‘Google’ … I typed the word ‘grey’ into the Facebook search box and guess what? I found a group called ‘Gray and Proud’. I just couldn’t believe it – I had discovered that a group of people actually shared the same thing as me – they were grey and proud of it – happy to be what they want to be. I asked to join the group and soon learned that it is made up of the most inspiring group of people from all walks of life who are so friendly and supportive. I just wished I had known about its existence when I started out on my journey but that’s not important now – I have made friends with so many lovely people and that’s all that matters.

Since I joined 'Gray and Proud' on Facebook, I have learned that there is a huge number of women who are being ignored by companies in their marketing of products. I think attitudes need to be changed about grey-haired women, ie attitudes in women themselves, society in general, the media, and in the world of beauty/fashion and advertising where trends are set and where influence is created. I am convinced that there are a lot of women who would consider going grey if they could only see how beautiful they could be by the example shown in advertising. Advertising is so powerful and has so much influence on people's attitudes and lives. So, advertisers listen - we want to see chic and sassy grey-haired models on television, in magazines, in fashion catalogues, in newspapers, on billboards, on the internet, etc! My big wish is that the tide will change and that we will see more grey-haired women featured in advertising and that society will view grey-haired women as 'normal' and, yes, beautiful.

We grey-haired women have a voice and we matter too!

The journey is not over yet. I can't wait for my hair to go even more grey/silver and I plan to enjoy every minute of the continuing changes to it.

Denise O’Neill
From Lisburn, Northern Ireland, UK

Monday, October 10, 2011

What Works For You?

Going gray is something that all of us in the Gray and Proud group are adjusting to right now, but like everything else in life, some experiences and methods of dealing with change are unique and personal ~ what works for one person might not work for another.

Of course, some of the changes have as much to do with the passing of time as with going gray. The two do seem to go together, although I’ve known people who started graying quite early in life. But generally, “growing gray hair” goes hand in hand with “growing up.“ And that’s what we’re doing ~ we’re growing up ~ NOT growing old!

For me, growing up has been a process of becoming a mature, responsible adult, while maintaining the zest for life and curious, fun-loving spirit of a child. It’s the best of both worlds! I have a career that I enjoy, and I do housework and pay bills ~ but I also dance around barefoot, go on crazy “meals on wheels” road-trips with my girlfriends, wear silly sunglasses, and lay in the backyard at night with Ralph (my dog) and wish on stars.

I live from the inside out. I think a healthy person is a happier person. I concentrate less on wrinkles and gray hair, and more on eating better, finding physical activities that I enjoy, and doing the things I love. I try as much as possible to go with the flow. I gravitate toward people who are loving, accepting, and supportive, and gently let go with love the ones who exude negativity. And I’m developing an intimate relationship with my inner voice.:)

As for the growing gray part, I was surprised by how many things I’d been doing for years simply didn’t work anymore ~ like wearing particular colors, using certain types of makeup, etc. They may be superficial things, but it’s important for my well-being and self-confidence to discover beauty products, makeup, and clothes that work with the changes I’m going through.

These are some things that are working for me ~

I love Philosophy products. Amazing Grace and Pure Grace are my favorites. They’re clean, fresh, feminine, and moisturizing without feeling heavy, greasy, or overly perfumey. They’re youthful, without trying too hard. And I don’t get a headache when I wear them.

Clairol Shimmer Lights Shampoo and Conditioner for blond and silver hair. It keeps silver hair silver instead of washed out yellow. And it’s not terribly expensive.

I switched to lighter, pinker lipsticks, and avoid brown/beige colors. And glossy, less matte lipsticks seem to work better now.

With makeup, less is more, but absolutely none doesn’t work either. Lighter, less mask-like foundation or sometimes just a little cover-stick around the eyes, with a dusting of translucent powder is fine.

Pink rather than peachy blush looks better with my hair now.

Also, I switched from brown eye shadows to charcoals and blue or purple-ish colors. My favorites are Sephora’s Black Flame 05 and Revlon/Satin Peacock Lustre 025.

As for wardrobe ~

Cooler colors are working better these days ~ love silvery gray and lavender. Neutrals, like tan, beige, and rust that I used to love look DREADFUL now.

I still love black, but NEED a little makeup when I wear it, or I look washed out.

I'll never stop wearing jeans ~ black jeans with a white top, or white jeans with a black top look fabulous with silver hair.

Silver jewelry looks better now. Love Saundra Messinger‘s ~

I buy better shoes now ~ nothing is worth blisters and achy feet. Has nothing to do with having gray hair, but everything to do with my overall demeanor. And I love flip-flops…

What works for you? Would love for everyone to post comments, ideas, thought, suggestions, tips, etc.


Saturday, October 8, 2011

Silver Spotlight ~ Marianne Kobie

My name is Marianne Kobie, I am 54. I live in Philadelphia, PA in the summer and Port Isabel, TX in the winter. I am a tarot card reader, Mystic Mare, which works well living in two different places, I take my business with me wherever I go.

My first inspiration on being my authentic self was my Grandmother. She was 26 before she married, at that time, she was considered an old maid and she told me her family worried for her. But she was not worried, she was out having fun, she had her own motorcycle, she was a flapper (no bra for her), she never shaved her legs (and I remember there was really no hair to see), wore no makeup nor did she dye her hair, and she was gorgeous and very feminine looking! I think she has been in my head all along saying ‘be yourself, not what others want’. So thanks GrandMom.

My hair journey started about 7 years ago , I was 47, when we purchased our winter home. Even though the community I live in is not for seniors only, many of the people are older. I watched with envy at the women who did not dye their hair. Every winter when I would return, there would be a few more who went natural. Each year I would say to myself ‘ this is the year to stop’. I would come home to Philadelphia with roots showing, and get verbally attacked from my friends and family to ‘color my hair, stop acting like the old women you spend your winter with, you are still young’. Even my hairdresser would tell me you are going to look so much older if you let it go. Sadly, I listened to everyone, but myself.

This past March while still in Texas, right after I dyed my hair, hating the color it turned out, decided right at that moment this would be last time I put any dye into my hair. I googled letting your hair go natural, and found the GGLG site, joined and met some wonderful women going through the transition at the same time as me. I then found the Gray & Proud group; what a great place to go to each morning and check in with like minded folks.

I feel so much more myself now. I love MY color, silver in front, black in the back, with silver streaming through the dark. I am now on the path of letting it grow long. Again the same friends/family are already telling me how old this will make me look. I just smile and remember what they thought about me letting it go natural. I went to my hairdresser yesterday, really the last time I will go to her, and told her to just thin it out, I was letting it grow, and she went on to tell me how I will not look good in the longer hair. She did admit that she liked my natural hair color - but that I was lucky, ‘not all women can wear this color’ - oh boy, I wished at that moment I had a photo of all the ladies on G&P!

The lesson I have learned since March 22, 2011:
Listen to your inner guide - not others.

The wise man, gathering it little by little, fills himself with good. -Buddha

Friday, October 7, 2011

Welcome to Silver Foxes!

Yasmina Rossi

Silver Foxes is a lifestyle blog dedicated to silver-tressed ladies and gentlemen everywhere! Are you a Silver Fox?

Recently, I discovered the Gray and Proud group on Facebook. We all have hair in varying stages of gray/silver/white, and we're all dealing with the challenges of going "au naturel." But aside from having gray hair in common, I'm discovering an interesting, witty, vibrant, and adventurous group of people from all over the world, determined to live life to the fullest! And my hope is that they ~ and you ~ will join me and use this blog to share thoughts, ideas, and tips on how to be a Silver Fox!

Society says "dye it ~ youthful is in ~ looking older is OUT!" Well meaning friends encourage us to cut it, color it, and fit in. And our own inner voices sometimes tweak us as well. But we know we've got a good thing going ~ we love our silver hair, and wear it with pride!

This is how I got here ~

Two years ago I experienced a serious health crisis that left me drained physically, emotionally and spiritually. When the smoke cleared, I was at least twenty five pounds overweight, and hopelessly out of shape. My face was pale and puffy, with dark circles under my eyes from stress and lack of sleep. And my long, brownish-blond hair was stringy, lifeless and turning gray.

I'd always been very upbeat and energetic ~ very young in spirit. But suddenly, I was feeling old and my self-confidence was shaken to the core.

I began to have this dialog with myself ~

Maybe you should start wearing more age appropriate clothing to hide the belly fat ~ maybe you should wear more blush ~ maybe you should cut your hair into a more mature, adult style ~ maybe you should color the gray hair to look younger ~ maybe...

Then one day while looking through a fashion magazine, trying to get some kind of inspiration, I saw a photo of lovely, silver-haired, Yasmina Rossi. I think it was an Eileen Fisher ad. For those of you who don't know Yasmina, she is in her fifties...slim, fit and beautiful...with long silvery-white hair. Inspiration jumped off the page and slapped me in the face!

A voice inside said ~

You're not a quitter! Don't lay down and die! Get up off your butt and do something! Don't hide the belly fat ~ get rid of it! Don't wear more blush ~ go outdoors and exercise!

And don't cut and color your hair ~ wear it long and flowing and silver! It's your crowning glory!

I know, it sounds kind of dramatic ~ but that's the way it was. I began to lose weight. I resumed my yoga practice, took a pole dancing class, and started bike riding again. I was writing, and taking pictures, and reading. I was enjoying my life again. It was a metamorphosis from the inside out. I wasn't trying to look younger ~ I was just trying to feel like the best me that I could be. And the better I felt, the better I looked.

I started using hair products to emphasize the silver in my hair, and stopped using curling irons and dryers and just let it flow wild and free. The more shiny and silvery my hair was, the livelier I felt.

These days, I'm feeling great! Is there a moral to my story? Only to love yourself fully and unconditionally ~ enough to trust your instincts and do what's best for you. And only you know what that is. So do it ~ because you're worth it!