What’s Your Best Neutral – Grey Hair

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After my posts on finding the best neutrals for blondes, and brunettes, you women who have grey hair wanted a post, so here it is!

If you have been warm, you most likely will grey in a warm manner, and suit warmer more taupe or greenish shades of grey.  But that said, some people as they age change from warm to cool colouring, particularly as they go grey, they lose those warm pigments in their skin and hair and swap to the cool side of the undertone continuum.

If you are cool you will grey in a cool manner to a silver colour.

 

Finding Your Neutrals - Grey Hair

Greys differ, there are cooler and warmer versions, some are more blue or purple (cooler) whilst others are more green, yellow or brown (warm).  Choose your grey wisely, as the right ones will look great, the wrong ones can sap you.

Remember, you can always wear a colour that is similar to your eye colour:

  • Brown eyes, wear brown
  • Blue eyes, wear navy
  • Green eyes, wear olive or forest green (depending on your shade of green)

More information on the different kinds of greys and how to match grey with other colours check out this post.

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17 Comments

  • Imogen, thanks so much for this. I was one of the ones requesting this. I’ve experienced the *wrong* gray. It is affirming to know I can wear brown because I have brown eyes. I love brown, but tend toward cooler things otherwise. Great post!

  • Dear Imogen,
    How do you clasify a grey hair? Is a grey hair one that has gone mostly grey, lets say about 75% or more? What is the impact of wearing grey if the hair has just started to loose its natural color? How can one still look great when the decision is going grey naturally?

    • Hi Maria and Imogen,

      At 39 I decided to stop coloring my hair and let it grow out to its natural color, just because the upkeep was so frequent and I had quite a bit of grey by then. I am 47 now and I love my hair color! It has a mix of some dark ash brown, grey and small wisps of white around my face. My eyes are green. I want people to know my grey hair is an asset to my look and I make a conscious decision to show it off. I wear cool greys, often choosing grey as my neutral and wear a variety of silver jewelry to really coordinate with my hair. I check out celebrities to see what they do with their grey hair, I check out Jamie Lee Curtis and Helen Mirren.

      Good luck growing your hair out and really enjoy it!
      Ruthanne

  • Also watch out for unnatural grey derivatives.. I couldn’t believe it, blaming my bathroom light for that strange shade of pink, but my hairdresser was dousing me in some old-lady wash that really weirded out my hair color for a bit after every haircut, against my explicit instructions. New hairdresser, I’m back to a good shade of silver. Aaaah. That said, as a warm grey person I agree that it’s important not to fall into the bottomless pit of blue-grey offered uniformly in the US for instance.

    • Yes the right grey is so important! There are so many options and different greys in hair as in clothing, and the colour can make such a difference to your appearance.

  • I am very confused. I was ash blonde when a baby. At 2 hair turned dark ash brown, med. brown eyes with a lot green near the Iris a few flecks of gold then navy around the rim. Overall look was hazel eyes with brown and lots of green. Skin very pale with some pink. If I went out into the sun, I burned easily and hair would have red and a little gold highlights. Always thought I was a Winter and dressed like that. Now I’m 63, my hair is med. ash brown with grey throughout-at least 50%. I have taken eye drops for Glaucoma, which has removed all the green and other colors from my eyes, so they are now medium brown. My skin is sallow but still with pink and pale in between. HELP! Now what do I do? Am I a summer or winter? Which kind? My overall look was high-contrast between my hair and skin, so pale. Now, The contrast is not as drastic, due to the skin becoming more yellow.

    Whatever help you can give me is most valuable. I love this site. You’ve got me thinking, Karen

    • Hi Karen,

      You may be neither a summer or winter. You may notice that I don’t use the seasons as they are too restrictive. I have created a colour system that has 18 colour groups of which 9 are warm and 9 are cool. It sounds like you may be Intriguing in my system (just a little warm, mostly smoky).

  • Hi Imogen,

    Thank you for this post. I’m working to find what neutrals best suit me. I had a PCA and was told I’m a warm autumn. I have warm medium beige pattern skin with brown freckles, warm green eyes with golden starburst. Shortly after the PCA, I decided to grow out my natural hair color which looks quite predominately bright cool white to the front and sides, and medium gray only in the back. I’m having difficulty finding a complimentary look that integrates the extreme warm coloring of my face and extreme cool coloring of my hair. Thank you in advance for any suggestions!

  • I have more cool gray than warm gray and brown/green hazel eyes. Any green that doesn’t have a lot of blue in it looks horrible with my hair and browns that aren’t grey enough do too. So I am confused. I if I wear my eye color, my hair looks yellow and if I dont wear my eye color, my eyes look drab. Which way to go?

    • This is where a professional colour consultation can really give you assistance with what specifically works for you – which sadly, without seeing you I can’t tell you.

  • This post is great even for us non gray heads. I’m going gray but color my hair to a more neutral brown color. Since I have warm, medium muted, low contrast coloring, I find that the warm colors in this post also work for me. Green grey, soft warm olive and soft camels are my go to neutrals.

  • It is so nice to see advice geared toward the “grey on purpose” crowd! It is so hard to find! As a “Soft Autumn” with olive green eyes, I am finally at my natural hair color and it is along the same lines as my coloring…I have warm grey hair that is a mix of brown and grey…almost a taupe color. I was upset at first because I wasn’t a beautiful silver grey, but now that I’ve gotten used to it, I love my hair color! Each of us goes grey in a unique way! I found a sweater the other day the same color as my hair and the color looked fantastic! I also look good in olive and dark brown…both colors are present in my eyes. We silver but sassy ladies still want to look good! lol Thanks for addressing this issue!

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