How to Make Gray Hair Shiny Silver: The Brighter You Get

Any hair needs its special sort of care, be it dark, brown, golden, or, yes, gray. While some opt for dyeing their hair to retain its earlier color or try a new one, thousands and millions prefer to have their hair natural gray.

It still takes special care and knowledge how to make grey hair shiny silver, so it doesn’t look like a surrender. Here we review some methods by which you can keep spreading your light and glamour around, look stylish and gorgeous.

Guide on Shining the Light on Your Gray Hair

There are many ways of how to make gray hair smooth and shiny, and most of them are nothing exotic. Shampoos and serums, conditioners and moisturizers, as well as natural methods can be used to achieve shiny gray hair and avoid dullness.

These are some ideas how you can keep your hair light and bright.

How to make gray hair shine

First of all, let’s see what happens to hair as years go and why it becomes gray. To understand this, we should break down what defines the color of the hair; and naturally it’s the pigment cells that each hair contains. These cells generate pigments, and so the hair gets its color defined by genes.

As years go by, pigment cells in the follicles gradually die out. Sometimes they do it suddenly – for example, in stressed conditions. But usually, it happens cell by cell and hair by hair, so some hairs turn gray earlier, and some retain its color much longer.

While this process takes place, the best strategy is to dye the hair in its natural color. But once gray hair prevails, you better admit it and embrace your new style.

But this doesn’t mean you can just let it go. Deprived of its natural pigment, your hair becomes vulnerable to effects that used to go unnoticed.

For example, they can visibly get yellowish or just dull, due to various environmental or nutritional affects. These changes are anything but beautiful, while gray hair certainly is beautiful and attractive when taken right care of.

That’s why there is so much need in special care for gray hair and keeping it in style. There are both specialized products and generic ones that are good for silver shine. So, let’s see which products and methods are the best to preserve that light around you.

Right shampoo

It seems the most obvious way, because among all health products, shampoo is what interacts with your hair the most. We will avoid mentioning trademarks and vendors, but here are some recommendations on what to search for:

  • Shampoos advertised as making grey hair shine. They are specifically designed to remove dullness;
  • Ones that neutralize yellow tones (these are often purple shampoos). They affect the hair from the outside and just wash the yellow out, making the color more straight and the surface smoother;
  • Choose a shampoo for drier hair types and apply it twice while cleansing but do it as frequently as before;
  • Check for a shampoo with a name that directly contains “silver.”

You might be tempted to try a random blonde hair shampoo, but there is no guarantee it will ever work. The reason is that natural blond is the color defined by functioning pigment cells, while gray is the result of its inevitable blackout; sorry, grayout.

Right conditioner

The main recommendation while choosing the conditioner is the following: choose the right one for your hair type. The color does not matter as hair gets gray because of losing any natural pigmentation, so disregard it. But thickness and coarseness do matter. Conditioner is also better when applied twice.

To the ends of your hair, you can also apply a leave-in conditioner. It will make it softer and silkier.

hair conditioning

Hair Serum

There are also specialized serums that can help you make your grey hair shinier. Though this is a very efficient way to keep your hair in the perfect shape, there are some details you should know:

  • Serums are good in the short run, but their long-term effect can be harmful due to silicone;
  • Use moisturizers after serum if the next day you feel your hair is getting dry;
  • Apply a clean serum after an amber-toned one;
  • You can also opt for just a clean serum so its effect is the most generic.

Toner

There are two options when it comes to toners.

  • Silver toners make gray hair shine by their direct action.
  • Blue toners neutralize the yellow shades that gradually appear.

The first one is obviously more popular.

Reduce Heat Styling

There are basically two recommendations:

  • Apply less heat styling on your hair and use medium settings to avoid drying out.
  • If you still do, use a heat protector.
  • Heat procedures can make your gray hair turn yellow and lose its shine. If you stop this process before it shows, this will contribute to your better hair.

Use satin pillowcases

Not that this recommendation addresses the problem of gray hair getting dull. It’s rather about the overall hair health. Satin is known for being forgiving for hair.

As you move your head, it always generates some friction between the hair and the fabric. But in the case of satin, this friction is much lower than with other fabric types. This minimizes the impact of your tossing and turning in the night, thus preventing your hair from getting shabby.

Buying satin pillowcases may have little impact on your hair if you don’t complement it with other measures from the list – like choosing the right shampoo and conditioner and applying it right.

Together, though, these measures will work cumulatively and enhance each other. Your hair will be the beneficiary of this synergy.

But don’t confuse satin and sateen. The latter is indeed cotton, and it doesn’t do your hair as good as satin does. Spelling matters.

Switch to a healthier diet

You are what you eat, they say. Not that it shows every time, but if you, say, consume too much fast food, it can have bad effects on your overall health, and thus on hair as well.

What would we recommend to make your hair stronger and more resistant to getting dull and yellowish? Here are just some products that we’d recommend.

  • Eggs. Due to proteins and biotin, eggs help you to grow stronger and healthier hairs.
  • Berries. They are a source of vitamin C which is crucial for producing collagen. In its turn, collagen makes hair stronger and prevents them from growing brittle.
  • Spinach, a source of iron and vitamin A.
  • Fatty fish that contains many microelements that foster healthy hair growth.
  • Avocado. Herbal fats also stimulate hair growth and improve health.
  • Oysters. Among all the seafoods, oysters are the greatest providers of zinc, second only to meat, but with fewer side effects.

This is not the definitive list of products that make your hair better. While a healthy diet doesn’t just make your hair shiny directly, it is good for your overall health and for healthy hair in particular. Anyway, you need to be healthy for shiny hair to ever appear on the list of your most urgent problems.

FAQ

As the problem of dull gray hair is frequent, there are also frequent questions to answer.

How can I make my gray hair whiter?

If you mean the color rather than the effect, there are many specialized products for that. In addition, you can apply vinegar solution, baking soda mixed with hydrogen peroxide, or clear serum.

How do you make homemade silver toner?

The simplest way to make it is a combination of an affordable white hair conditioner (1 cup) and semipermanent silver dye (1/4 teaspoon).

Mix them well with a spoon and pour into a pomp bottle, then apply to the hair. After you try it and see the effect, you can change the ratio to make it bluer or paler. Use this DIY silver toner once or twice a week.

How can I enhance my gray hair naturally?

As we have said, you can switch to a healthier diet and buy yourself silk or satin pillowcases. You can also use apple cider vinegar solution or the mix of baking soda and hydrogen peroxide.

The Glittersweet Conclusion

Knowing how to make gray hair soft and shiny will enable you to remain stylish and beautiful regardless of what anybody thinks. We used to avoid talking about aging, now we know that you can only grow brighter with years. There is a whole variety of methods, so choose yours!

We’re not talking about brands and products, except for the most generic considerations. But you can drop some names here in the comments. In addition, you can share your recommendations from your personal experience. Let’s help each other to shine!

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Monica Davis

Monica Davis

Monica is a professional men and women's hairstylist and a success coach. She started MyStraightener as a personal blog and it has grown into something bigger. You can also find her writing/speaking about new styling tools, hair products, and the latest things in hairdressing on HuffPost, NBC News, Healthline, etc. Learn more about Monica.

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