Friday, November 4, 2011

Pink Hair is AWESOME!

So, for the first day of Breast Cancer Awareness Month I had already decided to pinkify my head hair. I also just wanted a change and it was a perfect convergence of planetary alignment and already purchased and waiting in my bathroom hair products.  I did have to buy some lightening product to get the job done, but I am a proud American and getting 'er done is my thang.

The final decision on whether to go with all pink, black and pink or auburn(natural) and pink was.....


TAAA DAAA.....auburn and pink!

As you can see I kept the auburn in the back and on the sides and did the outrageously cool Manic Panic New Rose on the crown.

"Come on," you say "that must be a result of overexposed picture taking. There's no way it's THAT bright."

Check this out.


In natural sunlight against my son's brown monkey-towel for contrast.  I know right?!!???

So, how I did it; first I had to lighten the part I wanted pink as much as possible in order for the pink to take. I used L'Oreal Paris Super Blonde Crème Lightening Kit .


Also known as the "OMG what have I done?" stage.


I could have added the step of a color extractor/corrector to remove any residual hair dye, but I skipped it as 1. I didn't want to spend the money. 2. I was curious as to how well the Super Blonde would work alone on my hair. and 3. I didn't want to spend the money.

Yes that is a nifty vintage house coat (check the turquoise and avocado flowers) that I inherited from grandma, but it suffered old stains and rips from days gone by so it's now my hair dye smock.


As you can see, the areas with residual hair dye have a bit of a golden tone to them while the roots are practically white.  I was extremely satisfied with this result.  As tempting as it was to leave it like this since it was already a drastic change (which satisfied my change Jones all by itself) I pushed past the urge and went one to the next step:


Using a disposable wooden handled paint brush I applied the Manic Panic New Rose by carefully separating the lightened hair with my fingers, brushing with the dye and piling it on top of my head until it was all covered. I have the sort of mirrors in my bathroom that fold out so I can see the back of my head so it was a bit slower than if I had help but it was doable. Oh yeah, that shine on my forehead is from Vaseline to keep my skin from getting pinkified.

This is one area where I am grateful to have baby fine hair which I also keep shorter.  If you have long or thick hair, this stage would involve clips and possibly rollers to keep it separated.  Remember: don't use metal stuff with hair dyes.

O.K. So, the thing about Manic Panic dyes is they are safe to leave on your head for a looooong time.  I left this on for about 4 or 5 hours as I worked (OK puttered) around the house.  Manic Panic is a semi-permanent dye, which means it WILL wash out a bit more with each shampoo than the regular permanent hair colors you might be used to.  Of course, they aren't really permanent either as they all eventually fade and our hair grows in anyway.  Where was I? Oh yeah, point is leave in the Manic Panic as long as you can. I recommend at least 3 or 4 hours.

Since this original dye a month has passed and I refreshed the fading pink by putting it on in the evening and wearing a shower cap and sleeping in it. Yes, sleeping in it. This is also how folks who don't have 3 or 4 hours to putter around the house in the daytime can accomplish this look. The shower cap keeps the dye from drying out and it didn't harm my hair at all.  The resulting color is deep and rich and I don't have to be as careful about fading as I would had I only kept it on for the short time on the package. I don't even remember what the package says, but my advice is IGNORE the package. It's lying to you.  3 hours! Got it? Good!


So how have people reacted? Since I didn't do this for "people" I was truly in somewhat of a state of denial over how folks would respond to my new look. Firstly, as we all have 'those people' in our lives who we know will be negative no matter what, you can probably imagine how 'those people' in my life behaved. Negatively, insensitively and somewhat like energy vampires. Did this matter to me? Nope! Moving along.

I was overwhelmingly greeted with positive and complimentary statements from folks that see me on the regular. Also, surprise of surprises, complete strangers have paid me a heart-warming series of compliments and well-wishes. A few even made the breast cancer connection without being told. One lady stopped driving in the middle of the road to shout to me as I was walking with my son how much she loved the color and how it was obviously in support of breast cancer awareness. I have had on three different occasions, three different little girls run up to me and start talking about my "beautiful" pink hair. The best of all, a special needs girl from one of the programs my son attends smiled and hugged me and played with my hair for several minutes. Priceless.
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