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Helen Mirren, 76, Opens Up About Her Decision to Go Gray

3 min read
  • Dame Helen Mirren, 76, opened up about embracing gray hair in a new interview with Vogue.
  • The Good Liar actress said it was a “very easy” transition for her because her hair was always blonde.
  • Mirren said she has “grown into” her confidence over time.

    At 76, Helen Mirren has never felt more confident. The actress strutted down the L’Oreal show at Paris Fashion Week, and she showed off an edgy look with dramatic cat-eye makeup and her signature gray strands tied in an elegant updo.

    Mirren has rocked silver hair for years, and the actress recently opened up to Vogue about her decision to go gray. The actress said she was inspired by her past role as Queen Charlotte in The Madness of King George, which was set in the 18th century—a time when gray hair was seen as flattering.

    “They would be powdered in white and gray because it was incredibly flattering and they understood that,” she said of the royals at the time. After the movie, Mirren decided to embrace her natural color. “I have to say it was very easy for me because my hair was always blonde,” she said.

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    As a blonde, Mirren told Vogue that she lost her natural hair color fairly quickly. “It just looked more and more as if I had been in the sun, but year-round,” she said. Mirren said that going gray should be encouraged, but “that’s not to say you can’t have fun with your hair.”

    The actress has famously played around with a few different hair colors in recent years, including a soft pink look at the launch of L’Oréal Paris’ new Age Perfect Makeup collection in 2019. She also told Vogue that she’d consider putting some lowlights back into her hair soon.

    “The women of my age who have made the leap [to gray] recently look so spectacular,” Mirren said. Ultimately, “people should do whatever makes them feel comfortable.”

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    In a previous interview with People, Mirren said that people are scared of going gray because it signifies that they’re in a different age group. “And of course, you are in that age group. I’m sorry, but you are! So, why not just embrace it, go along with it and welcome it?” she said. “Make it a positive thing as opposed to a negative thing.”

    To care for her hair, Mirren takes a minimalist approach. Aside from events, she never uses heat on her hair and only dries it. She also previously told RedBook that she uses Kiehl’s shampoo and conditioner. Other great shampoos for gray hair include the L’Oreal Paris Serie Expert Magnesium Silver Neutralising Shampoo and Clairol Professional Shimmer Lights Shampoo.

    As she ages, Mirren is feeling more confident than she ever has before. “You grow into it, without question,” she told Vogue of her confidence. For a long time, the actress believed she had “fat cheeks,” so she would always suck her cheeks in. “But you can’t suck your cheeks in and smile at the same time… So I guess I never smiled,” she said. “Then I discovered that, actually, it’s nice to smile openly and with freedom, not a tight little smile, a big one,” she said.

    Today, Mirren says that beauty and confidence come from the inside. “My advice is to work from the inside out,” she said, adding that she prioritizes a balanced diet and a practical workout regimen to feel good at any age. “What you’re putting inside your body does influence how you feel about yourself, so start there,” she said.

    Mirren is an icon and the epitome of timelessness, so we’ll be following all of her advice. We can’t wait to see what the silver-haired beauty does next!

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