Young Asia woman looks at grey hair on her part

5 Effective Ways to Delay Grey Hair According to Science

Can You Delay Grey Hair Naturally?

Next time you look in your bathroom mirror, imagine yourself with a few grey hairs. Then a few more. Now visualize yourself with a full head of grey tresses. How are you feeling about your new look?

Maybe you’re OK with some silver visitors someday. Or maybe you’re already speed-dialing your colorist. I have these conversations with my clients all the time so I know that everyone reacts differently to their grey hair. There’s no right or wrong decision – deciding to embrace or cover the grey is a deeply personal choice. Only you know what is right for you.

I certainly wasn’t ready for full silver fox status. When I began going grey in my 20s, I was fine with a little platinum on my temples and beard, but I wanted it to stop there. My client Allison Conrad felt the same way. That’s why we founded Arey. We wanted to find science-backed solutions to slow and delay grey hair naturally.

So before someday becomes this day, here’s what the science says about delaying grey hair.  

How to Target Your Grey Hair Proactively

The most important thing I tell my clients is that preventing grey hair is easier than reversing it. That means the sooner you start treating the causes of grey hair, the better your results will be.

Getting proactive about delaying your grey hair means assessing your current percentage of grey strands. If your hair is less than 30% grey you will see the best results from Arey’s proactive grey hair solutions. More than 30% grey means that you should see a slowing of grey hair growth. 

The science is strong on this – only 30% of the reason you go grey is caused by your genes. The other 70% is caused by factors including your lifestyle, the environment, aging and potentially stress.1 Are you ready to be the hero of your grey hair journey? Here’s what you can do to prevent and delay your greys proactively. 

1. Can Stress Turn Your Hair Grey?

Can you really go grey from stress? A 2021 medical study did find a link between color changes in hair and periods of reported stress.2 The study found that when you are under a lot of stress, some hairs may lose pigment earlier. If stress is reduced, repigmentation can occur.

According to experts,3 stress turns your hair grey prematurely by affecting the stem cells that generate hair pigment. Lowering stress levels isn’t going to instantly restore your natural hair color, but don’t skip those meditations – they could slow the rate you turn grey. 

2. Is Your Diet Giving You Grey Hair?

Nutritional deficiencies are a major cause of premature greying. If your diet is deficient in vitamins B12, D3, copper,4 calcium5 or iron, your hair is more likely to turn grey.6

If you’re not always consuming the perfect balance of nutrients for your hair health, you’re not alone. No one’s diet is perfect. The Linus Pauling Institute’s Micronutrient Information Center7 found that almost 80% of Americans don’t eat enough of the fresh fruit and vegetables that provide pigment-supporting nutrients. 

You need the right nutrients to boost your body’s production of melanin – the pigment that gives your hair its unique color. Each strand of your hair is surrounded by melanocytes that produce melanin to add color to your hair. When melanin production drops off, your hair goes grey, and then white.


Arey Grey Grpahic shows greying process


Delaying Grey Hair Means Getting the Right Balance of Nutrients

Great hair starts from the inside. That’s why we launched our science-backed haircare system with Not Today, Grey, a nutritional supplement designed to prevent and even repigment grey hair. 

Not Today, Grey contains B12, iron, and D3 as well as these other science-backed vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants (molecules that prevent damage to your cells).

Here's how Not Today, Grey works to boost your hair growth and stimulate melanin production:

    • Vitamin B6: (as pyridoxine HCI). B6 supports pigment production to help maintain melanin levels.

    • Folate: also known as folic acid. Folic acid boosts your hair growth and volume. It even slows the rate of grey hair growth.8

    • Vitamin B10: (PABA). Studies show that PABA leads to hair darkening and helps grey hair return to its original color.9 

    • Fo-Ti: this widely-used Asian herb is popular for its anti-aging properties, including reversing grey hair. It is thought to restore melanin levels.10 

    • Black sesame: this nutrient-rich oilseed contains high levels of antioxidants and vitamins E, A, and B which promote melanocyte activity.11

    The sooner you start to properly nourish your hair, the sooner you will see results.

    3. Stop Grey Hair at the Root

    The Arey system is designed to nourish your hair from the inside-out and the outside-in. For best results, we recommend combining our Not Today, Grey supplement with our topical serum, To The Root. This non-greasy lightweight serum delivers a potent cocktail of clinically effective ingredients directly to your roots.



    To The Root delivers a powerful antioxidant (Citrus reticulata) that combats greying caused by oxidative stress. Oxidative stress occurs when there is an overgrowth of free radicals (unstable atoms that can damage cells) that attack the pigment-producing cells around your hair follicles. Antioxidants are like an off-switch for free radicals. 

    Citrus reticulata helps combat grey hair in two powerful ways:  

    1. STOPS oxidative stress turning your hair grey
    2. PREVENTS pigment loss by stimulating pigment (melanin) production 

    The combination of To The Root and Not Today, Grey is the core of our grey hair treatment system, so we created a convenient bundle called … The System.



    4. Why Smokers Go Grey Earlier

    Nicotine is extremely addictive and quitting smoking can be tough. But the best gift you can give your hair and your future self is to stop smoking. 

    Here’s what smoking does to your hair:

      • Reduces blood flow to your follicles: strands starved of nutrient and oxygen-rich blood are more prone to weakness and hair loss.12

      • Causes premature grey hair: studies13 show a higher instance of grey hair in smokers over 30.

    It’s not just your hair that will thank you for giving up smoking. Research shows that your body has a remarkable ability to repair itself after you quit – even reversing some of the damage caused by smoking.14


    5. Know When to Ask For Hair Help

    According to a 2018 review in the International Journal of Trichology,4 premature greying can also be caused by certain autoimmune and thyroid conditions. If you feel that your hair is greying too fast or too early be sure to check in with your doctor.


    Woman uses Arey To The Root hair growth serum on her hair


    Proactive Science-Backed Haircare That Delays Grey Hair

    I am often asked when’s the best time to start using Arey’s System. My answer is always the same – the sooner the better. Why? Because it’s easier to prevent grey hair than it is to repigment your strands. We want you to get proactive about your grey hair because Not Today, Grey, and To The Root work best on hair that is less than 30% grey. 

    Most of our customers see results in 3-6 months. That's how long it takes for your hair to show the benefits of the targeted nutrition and science-backed ingredients.

    At Arey, we care about your hair health – that’s why we offer 25% off on all subscriptions to help keep you on track with your hair health goals. Because we believe that science + consistency = results.

    We are Arey.

    We want you to feel happy and confident with your hair. Have questions? Send us an email or go to our FAQ page. 


    Jay Small with customer

    AuthorJay SmallJay Small is a sought-after hair stylist and Trichologist in Los Angeles with over 22 years of experience. His clients consist of high-profile business and creative leaders. He trained as an apprentice to the owner of Paul Mitchell and worked in education and product development for Paul Mitchell Systems. Jay is incredibly passionate about the creative process both in terms of styling hair and developing effective products.


    2. Quantitative mapping of human hair greying and reversal in relation to life stress - PMC
    3. How stress causes gray hair | National Institutes of Health (NIH)
    4. Premature Graying of Hair: Review with Updates - PMC 
    5. Relationship between Trace Elements and Premature Hair Graying
    6. Epidemiological and investigative study of premature graying of hair in higher secondary and pre-university school children
    7. The best nutrients for healthy hair and nails | Optum Store
    9. Medication-Induced Repigmentation of Gray Hair: A Systematic Review - PMC 
    10. Fo-Ti Benefits | Natural Health Guide  
    12. Implications of cigarette smoking on early‐onset androgenetic alopecia: A cross‐sectional Study
    13. The Effects of Smoking on Hair Health: A Systematic Review | Skin Appendage Disorders | Karger Publishers