It’s not your imagination; minoxidil 5 percent can stain your hair gray.

Based on my experience, the 5 percent minoxidil solution “turns” whatever hair it comes in contact with a grayish color.

The new hairs that have come in are my natural color, so I’m not saying that this drug makes the regrowth gray.

And the “gray” isn’t the same as a true gray hair. It’s some kind of staining that’s not well-documented in the medical literature.

A good shampoo gets rid of most of it, but it will return if you keep using the 5 percent solution—at least in my case, this is what happened.

My hairdresser thought I had gray hairs coming in; she seemed skeptical when I told her it was the 5 percent minoxidil.

I’ve been using the drug on my temples where there’s been some hair loss, and I must say, the new hair is coming in wonderfully. I have my solid hairline back.

The fix for the staining problem was for me to stop using the 5 percent so much and rely more on the 2 percent.

Even though the 5 percent is marketed towards men, there’s no reason why women can’t use it. But it does come with more potential side effects.

In my case it was the gray staining, but also aggravating itching. The 2 percent solved the staining problem outright and doesn’t itch as much. And by the way, sponging the gray area with water will not get rid of it.

You may want to use the 5 percent to kick start the regrowth, but then once the regrowth occurs, use the 2 percent for maintenance.

Lorra Garrick has been covering medical, fitness and cybersecurity topics for many years, having written thousands of articles for print magazines and websites, including as a ghostwriter. She’s also a former ACE-certified personal trainer.