There’s No Need to Pull Out Your Gray Hairs After All

If the thought of going gray freaks you out, your first impulse might have been to yank the strand out of your scalp immediately. Talk to enough women about their first time seeing gray and you’ll find out they did the same exact thing. Hell, Kendall Jenner did! But the legend goes that pulling out a gray causes two to grow in its place, which totally defeats the purpose of getting rid of it in the first place.

But is that folk tale true? And if you couldn’t control yourself and tugged out that gray, should you expect two more visitors in the near future?

And the Answer Is…

You can rest easy because according to Matrix SoColor Celebrity Stylist George Papanikolas, it’s a total myth. “It doesn’t make two grow because plucking one hair doesn’t create two follicles in its place,” he says. However, it’s still pretty bad for your hair and a habit you should drop immediately.

“It’s not generally a good idea to pluck gray hairs because over time you can damage the follicle, and it will stop producing hair,” says Judy McGuinness, a senior stylist at mizu new york. So you’re potentially setting yourself up for thinning hair.

And if you’re worried about it being super noticeable, apparently yanking it out is the worst thing you can do. “Also, if you pull out a long gray hair, then as it grows back, it will be a short gray hair more likely to stick straight up and draw more attention to itself,” she says.

If you do want to take care of the grays, McGuinness suggests visiting your colorist for a semi-permanent gloss. “It adds shine and a little pigment, so the gray hair blends and isn’t as apparent. A gloss will also wash out over time, so you’re not damaging the hair or creating a line of demarcation,” she says.