Going gray is a popular choice these days whether you have never colored your hair or after many years of coloring, you have decided to embrace your grey. But what are the best colors to complement gray hair?

Let’s have a look at the best colors to complement gray hair.

If you’re still wondering if gray hair is for you, you may like to enjoy the article and comments in our article to gray or not to gray.

The best colors to complement gray hair

Once you have chosen to go gray, the question that I often get asked is “what colors look good with grey hair?”. Let’s explore the best color palettes for gray hair in this article.

Gray hair is the lack of pigment that naturally occurs as we age, as does a softening of our skin tones and even our eye color.

Not all gray is the same

50 shades of grey? Not quite, but there are many variations depending how much grey is in your hair and what your natural color was. Grey ranges from salt & pepper, steel grey, champagne, silver, platinum and all the way to pure white.

And the percentage of hair that is gray compared to that which is still pigmented also changes the look of your grey and will change over time as more pigment is lost.

The color grey is naturally a “cool” color, so depending on the amount of gray in your hair, you may look “cooler” even if you have a warm complexion and eye color.

With all these changes you may not suit some colors that you wore when younger. Let’s discuss the best color pallets to complement your gray hair.

In this article, you will find the colors to complement your gray best – depending on what your original natural color was.

I’ve also included some beautiful clothes in the colors that suit you best. I’ve concentrated on tops, coats and scarves as these will be what you wear against your face and hair.

color palettes tips for gray hair | 40plusstyle.com

Pastels may wash you out now as there is less contrast between your hair and complexion. Avoid muddy colors as these may dull your complexion.

Dark colors may be too harsh.

So what can you wear? Exactly what are the colors to complement gray hair?

Mid value colors to bright and jewel tones will be more complementary. Now let’s explore that in more detail. I was trained in the color analysis concept and believe that your skin undertone remains the same as you age.

That means if you have a cool undertone, you will always have that, so I will review the color pallets for warm and cool.

Which colors complement cool complexions

Colors that complement cool complexions | 40plusstyle.com

If you had naturally dark brunette or black hair you will look best in these colors:

Purple

Purple best complements naturally dark brunette or black hair | 40plusstyle.com

Brenda matches her coat to her glasses, and both go beautifully with her hair color, showing why purple is one of the colors to complement gray hair.

Check out this similar puffer jacket, scarf, jeans and boots to recreate her look.

Eileen Fisher ballet neck long sleeve top | 40plusstyle.com

Eileen Fisher ballet neck long sleeve top

Royal blue

1.State partch pocket belted shirt | 40plusstyle.com

1.State partch pocket belted shirt

Cobalt

Tory Burch traveler logo jacquard wool & silk scarf | 40plusstyle.com

Tory Burch traveler logo jacquard wool & silk scarf

Fuchsia

Halogen cashmere sweater | 40plusstyle.com

Halogen cashmere sweater

Red

If you had naturally dark brunette or black hair you will look best in red | 40plusstyle.com

Mel teams a red outfit, complete with red lipstick, with her gray hair.

Get her look with this similar long sleeved top, crop pants and booties.

Chelsea28 wrap top | 40plusstyle.com

Chelsea28 wrap top

Emerald green

Treasure & Bond crewneck pullover | 40plusstyle.com

Treasure & Bond crewneck pullover

All greys from silver to charcoal

BP. plush bias scarf | 40plusstyle.com

BP. plush bias scarf

Icy colors

Cole Haan Signature slick wool blend wrap coat | 40plusstyle.com

Cole Haan Signature slick wool blend wrap coat

What you may wish to avoid

Browns in your pallet may not work as well next to your face but would be fine as neutrals for trousers, skirts and jackets.

You may find black a bit too harsh, so you may want to substitute with navy.

White may be too draining next to your face especially if you have a high percentage of grey in your hair

Those who had blonde or lighter brown hair will look best in these:

Denim blue

Denim blue complements those who had blonde or lighter brown hair | 40plusstyle.com

Tania looks stunning in a mix of blues and prints.

Check out this similar chambray shirtdress, ribbed tank top, wide leg pants and shoes.

1901 classic chambray shirt | 40plusstyle.com

1901 classic chambray shirt

French blue

Halogen mock neck sweater | 40plusstyle.com

Halogen mock neck sweater

Cornflower blue

French Connection notch collar faux shearling coat | 40plusstyle.com

French Connection notch collar faux shearling coat

Periwinkle blue

Nordstrom wool & cashmere scarf | 40plusstyle.com

Nordstrom wool & cashmere scarf

Jade green

best colors to complement gray hair - jade green | 40plusstyle.com

J.Crew side slit turtleneck sweater

Rose red

Tommy Hilfiger button-up shirt | 40plusstyle.com

Tommy Hilfiger button-up shirt

Deep lavender

The best colors to complement gray hair | 40plusstyle.com

Lyn, The Accidental Icon opts for a mix of cool tones in her outfit.

Steal her look with this similar sweater, jeans, shoes and earrings.

J.Crew cashmere sweater | 40plusstyle.com

J.Crew cashmere sweater

Raspberry

Leota faux wrap dress | 40plusstyle.com

Leota faux wrap dress

Magenta

Halogen wool & cashmere poncho | 40plusstyle.com

Halogen wool & cashmere poncho

Bright pinks

Gibson fitted top | 40plusstyle.com

Gibson fitted top

Pale greys

Nordstrom cashmere & silk scarf | 40plusstyle.com

Nordstrom cashmere & silk scarf

Off-white

Those who had blonde or lighter brown hair will look best in ivory | 40plusstyle.com

Judith, The Style Crone chooses a palette of whites and creams.

Recreate her look with this similar coat, jeans, booties, gloves, pillbox hat and jewellery set.

Vince Camuto batwing chiffon top | 40plusstyle.com

Vince Camuto batwing chiffon top

The browns and taupe in your palette may not work as well next to your face but would be fine as neutrals for trousers, skirts and jackets.

You may want to avoid soft pastels as these may wash you out.

Which colors complement warm complexions?

Warm tones and color to complement gray hair | 40plusstyle.com

Those who had warm brown, strawberry or golden blonde hair will look best in these:

Kelly Green

Those who had warm brown, strawberry or golden blonde hair will look best in green | 40plusstyle.com

Misja teams green with a pop of orange.

Recreate her look with this similar sweater, wide leg pants and long jacket.

best colors to complement gray hair - green | 40plusstyle.com

Vince Camuto rumple fabric blouse

Watermelon

St. John Collection sweater | 40plusstyle.com

St. John Collection sweater

Corals

best colors to complement gray hair - corals | 40plusstyle.com

Caslon turtleneck sweater

Turquoise

Tahari sheath dress | 40plusstyle.com

Tahari sheath dress

Bright aqua

Those who had warm brown, strawberry or golden blonde hair will look best in aqua | 40plusstyle.com

Josephine coordinates her jewelry with her sweater.

Check out this similar sweater, wide leg pants, booties and necklace.

best colors to complement gray hair - aqua | 40plusstyle.com

1901 shoulder button sweater

Royal blue

Gibson notch collar blazer | 40plusstyle.com

Gibson notch collar blazer

Warm pinks

best colors to complement gray hair - warm pinks | 40plusstyle.com

Treasure & Bond cable knit scarf

Lilac

Blank NYC moto jacket | 40plusstyle.com

Blank NYC moto jacket

Warm cinnamon browns will be better than a tan or buff colour next to your face.

Beiges would be fine as neutrals for trousers, skirts and jackets. Ivory may be too pale for you now, so wear it with an accent color.

Those who had auburn or red hair will look best in these:

Tomato red

Those who had auburn or red hair will look best in tomato red | 40plusstyle.com

@iknmlo opts for navy and red stripes.

Steal her look with this similar stripe blouse and necklace.

best colors to complement gray hair - tomato red | 40plusstyle.com

Halogen lace & crepe top

Burnt orange

All In Favor satin midi dress | 40plusstyle.com

All In Favor satin midi dress

Terracotta

best colors to complement gray hair - terracotta | 40plusstyle.com

Liverpool denim jacket

Teal

Halogen drape back top - plums | 40plusstyle.com

Halogen drape back top

Plums

best colors to complement gray hair | 40plusstyle.com

Ted Baker wool scarf

Aubergine

Nordstrom ruana | 40plusstyle.com

Nordstrom ruana

Deep coral

best colors to complement gray hair - corals | 40plusstyle.com

Caslon waffle sweater

Forest green

Chelsea28 wrap blouse | 40plusstyle.com

Chelsea28 wrap blouse

Goldenrod

best colors to complement gray hair - goldenrod | 40plusstyle.com

Nordstrom wool & cashmere scarf

Choose the warmer and richer colors in your pallet as the paler colors may wash you out.

Neutrals in the richer warm browns and camel will be better next to your face than olive or khaki.

Make-up to complement gray hair

Wear make-up colours that complement your skin tone.

You may feel you look paler now as your skin and hair color are a lower contrast, so you may want to try a brighter lip color. Lip and blush colors should be clear and slightly bright.

Warm complexions would use corals and warm pinks and cool complexions pinks and berries. Red lipstick is another great option, but perhaps go a bit lighter or with a sheer red.

Quick Tips for wearing color with gray hair

  • Wear your most flattering colors next to your face.
  • If you wear mostly neutrals, add color with scarves and accessories.
  • Play up your eye color with your clothing choices. Blue eyes will really pop with turquoise and cobalt blue and hazel and green eyes with greens and purples.
  • Try on clothes in colors you may never have worn before.
  • Try on different lipstick colors. Do a lipstick swap with friends and try new shades.

Keep in mind everyone is unique, so now is a perfect time to experiment and try something different. What colors are you loving with your grey hair?

Continue reading:

  1. How To Dye Your Hair Roots Yourself
  2. To Grey Or Not To Grey?
  3. How To Transition To Grey Hair: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3

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The best colors to complement gray hair | 40plusstyle.com

Feature image by Lyn, The Accidental Icon

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