Glorious Gray

by Sarah Anderson | photography by Dave Burgess

Carol Laurn

Carol Laurn

Carol Laurn

Carol Laurn

“I feel gray/white hair makes a statement. Gray hair should not define a woman’s journey in her mature years. Many women are courageous, intelligent, and exciting, and should not be a prisoner to society’s concepts of what is beautiful.”

Kate O'Keefe

kate O'Keefe

Kate O’Keefe​

“Several years ago, I made a commitment to be my genuine and authentic self. When my gray hair started coming in, I knew that I wanted to keep it because it was my real self. I love my gray hair because it’s natural, unique and cheaper to manage. Not dying my hair means I can get that cute pair of shoes I’ve been eyeing.”

Victoria Upton

Victoria Upton

Victoria Upton

“Following high doses of chemotherapy treatments, my signature mop of dark curly hair fell out. While I was hairless, I enjoyed the freedom of the ultimate low maintenance hairdo — complete baldness. When my hair started to return, I was surprised that the new growth appeared white and spiky. And chic! Once I had enough growth to get it cut or colored, I had embraced my new light, bright natural hair. Sure, I’ve considered trying something new, yet for now, I’m too fond of the varying streaks of gray to let it go. To me, it signifies who I am, and I wear it as a  symbol of gratitude for my life journey. I’ve toyed with the idea of trying a streak of teal or purple, but my gray ‘crown of glory’ is here to stay.”

Liz Baker

Liz Baker

Liz Baker

“After years of coloring my hair and the colorings getting closer and closer I decided to just go gray. Not to mention the timing was perfect because going gray was vogue: Even the young gals were going gray! My hair designer and my color expert worked with me to just let it happen naturally. The process took about 3 to 4 months. I love how it turned out. It’s easy, and I have to believe that it’s healthy choice not to color.”

Patti Sevensma

Patti Sevensma

Patti Sevensma

“About three years ago I was having to color my hair every three weeks and it was costing $90 each time. My scalp was also becoming irritated because of the frequency of the chemicals, so I made the decision to stop coloring my hair and never looked back.”

“I love the freedom to be me! In some ways, it’s like being a kid again. As an older woman, it’s really important to feel comfortable with the aging process and being able to be yourself. I have been a wife, mother, grandmother, employee, artist and volunteer. In other words, I have served my community for 50 years. I am now able to serve myself and do what is best for me.”

Deb Bates

Deb Bates

Deb Bates

“I started my natural hair journey about five  years ago, which included not using chemicals to process my hair. I just wanted to stop being a slave to having to present myself a certain way (meaning standards set by others). I need to have the power over my hair. Hair is a big thing; it’s part of who you are as a Black Woman. The hair journey can be interesting and a challenge. Since my hair is naturally auburn, the gray is coming in sprinkled all around the edges.”

“What I like most about my hair is that it changes every day and I never know what to expect from it.  And that’s how life is—ever changing!”

Audrey Sundstrom

Audrey Sundstrom

“What I love most about my hair is that is shimmers in the sunlight. I look at gray hair, or as I prefer to call it, silver hair, as just another color. It’s not about aging. I never changed my hairstyle throughout the growing out process, so I was still me, only my hair color had changed. The process of growing out my hair was lengthy, and I’m glad that is many years behind me. If I’d been smart, I would have never started coloring my hair at all. People highlight their hair with blonde streaks, what’s so different about silver streak? My style of clothing and my hair are the things that define me and my overall style. With my silver hair, which has its own natural low-lights, I am truly, 100 percent ME!”

Laura Armenta

Laura Armenta

Laura Armenta

“Women seem afraid of “aging” and look for constant ways to remain young or youthful. Since I am an educator, I thought putting myself “out there” and embrace MY gray and everything else that comes with aging, would be empowering to others. Leading by example has been always my thing. “


Sarah shuffles between editorial support, content production and advertising at WLM. She loves her job so much, and isn’t just saying that to impress her boss.


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