Hairstyles for White Hair

By Andrea Griffith

As we age, our hair turns gray. According to the Library of Congress, gray hair increases "10 to 20 percent every decade after 30 years." For many people, the gray hair will then turn white. Instead of dyeing over your white hair to get a younger look, try styling your hair differently. A younger hairstyle will make you look and feel fabulous and more youthful.

Mature woman turning head, close-up
credit: Ralf Nau/Digital Vision/Getty Images

Layered Bob for Medium-length Hair

Have your hair stylist cut your hair into a layered bob. The length of the hair should be cut just at or slightly under the chin and the layers should be left longer. For regular styling, always wash your hair with a moisturizing shampoo and conditioner. The extra moisture will help soften your hair (white hair will be more brittle and wiry). Use a large, round, boar-bristled brush as you blow your hair dry. Roll the large brush up through one section of hair. Pull the brush down slightly (while still rolling the brush) as you apply the heat from the hair dryer. Do this until all of your hair is completely dried. This will help add volume and soft, large curls to your hairdo.

Invest in some large hot rollers. Roll different sections of your hair into a roller and secure the roller with a roller clip. Only keep the rollers in your hair for a maximum of five minutes. Take the rollers out when time is up and finger brush out the hair (lightly) to get soft, voluminous look. This hairstyle will resemble Helen Mirren's cut (see Resources).

Short and Stacked

Consider a cut where the longest layer is just above your chin. Wash your hair with a moisturizing shampoo and conditioner. Use a small, round, boar-bristled brush to brow dry your hair. Work in sections as you roll your hair around the brush, pulling down as you apply the heat to it. This will give your hair medium-sized, soft curls. Roll the bottom layer of your hair in medium to large rollers (you don't want your hair to be super curly). The middle section of hair should be rolled in medium rollers and the top section (mainly the bangs) should be rolled in small to medium rollers. Take the rollers in your bangs out after only three minutes (longer will result in spiral curls). The rest of the rollers should be taken out after five to seven minutes. Take a large brush and "brush out" the curls to make your hair voluminous. This hairstyle is similar to the Meryl Streep's hairstyle in the movie "The Devil Wears Prada" (see Resources).

Layered, Long Hair

Grow your hair out until it is past your shoulders. Getting trims every six weeks will help reduce split ends making your hair healthier. Have your stylist cut your hair into multiple layers. Wash your hair with a moisturizing shampoo and conditioner. Blow your hair dry using a large, round, boar-bristled brush. Place the brush under a section of hair and pull down on the brush through the section as your blow it dry (do not roll the hair through the brush). Do this until the hair is completely dry.

Use a flat iron to straighten the hair. Put a section of hair in between the barrel of the iron. Gently, pulled the iron through the hair section, turning the end of the section under slightly. For a more volumizing look, place large rollers throughout your hair. Leave the rollers in for only five minutes (at the most). Take the rollers out and finger brush out the curls or brush using a large paddle brush. The long, layered look is a hairstyle often worn by singer/song writer Emmylou Harris (see Resources).