Saturday, March 13, 2010

That'll Teach Me To Listen To My Mother

A couple weeks ago, as I was about to walk out the door to go to work, my mom looked at me (and keep in mind, this is at 6:15am and I am not a morning person) and said, "Wow, you're really getting grey!"

Yep, just what you want to hear from your mother first thing in the morning. Now I will admit that I've never been one to color my hair. To be honest, it just seems like so much maintenance and time that I don't have. My mom, on the other hand, has been coloring her hair forever and doesn't actually know the true color of her hair anymore.

That little comment stuck with me. And now that I have a little more time on my hands since I'm staying home for a bit, I decided to do something about it. It could be fun to color my hair and have a little bit different look for a bit.

Having never done this before, I decided to find one that is not a permanent color. The last thing I want to do is have a disaster on my hand until my hair grows out. I looked around, and I was shocked at how hard it was to find non-permanent hair coloring. But I was persistent, and I found some that claims to last for a month.

The hard part was finding a color. I didn't want to go blonde. Or black. Or red. Or really anything with a major difference. I wanted to find something that had a little bit of a hint of color and highlight more than what mine does naturally these days. I finally settled on one that was a mild auburn. It was fairly close to my natural color but a bit brighter.

I read all the instructions and followed the preparations. As I poured the color from bottle one into bottle two, I was reassured that it was a lovely brown color. I put on the gloves and shook. I was supposed to shake until it was thickened, but who knows how long that takes. I kept shaking and shaking and finally decided that had to be long enough.

On went the dye, and I somehow managed to not get it on anything other than my hair. I consider that to be a minor miracle. I set the timer for eight minutes, figuring that it had taken me a minute or two to apply everything, and I was to leave it on for ten minutes.

Once I heard that magical beep, I began to rinse. I added the small amount of water to my hair and worked it into a lather. Next step was to rinse until the water ran clear. Yep, that's when I realized we might have a problem.

You see, the water was running purple. And I don't mean mostly brown with a little color, I mean full on Northwestern purple with a hint of red. My first instinct was to hyperventilate, but I managed to hold that back. As much as I love purple - and yes, it's my favorite color - having purple hair wasn't really what I was going for.

Every splatter against the shower walls freaked me out more, and I quickly used the gloves to wipe away those traces - because if I can't see them, it didn't happen, right? The water finally ran clean, much later than I thought it should have.

I cautiously peeked at my wet hair, and it appeared to be much the same as it was before. Of course any dark hair that's wet looks the same, but hey - it made me feel better.

Then I looked at the gloves I'd been using first to apply and then to rinse my hair. That's when I actually did start hyperventilating.

This doesn't do a good job of showing how truly red the gloves were (I so need a good camera!), but this doesn't look like the brown with a bit of a brighter hint that the package had promised, does it?

As I dried my hair, the sunlight streaming into the window showed me exactly what I had on my hands, errr my head. It was a gorgeous color. For Sharon Osbourne. In fact, I think this might well actually be her color.

Ironically, I heard my mom come into my house at this point, as she wanted to take Little Miss to gymnastics. I walked downstairs, and she started laughing. This is not a good sign. Once she recovered, she asked whether I was trying to go that red. Umm no.

Once Little Miss got off the bus, we moved into the kitchen, where I had the blinds closed. The good news? When I'm not in the sun, it doesn't look nearly so red. In fact, it's actually a decent color. I'm working on staying inside in bad lighting for the next month.

See? It's cloudy and rainy and yucky right now, so the red isn't coming out very well but you at least get the idea. Sorta. I should really know better, shouldn't I?

The friends I've seen in the intervening two days have yet to comment at all on my color change. And you know what that means - if you can't say something nice, don't say anything at all as my mommy taught me.

Twenty-seven more hair washes, and I'll be back to normal. I hope. Apparently my virgin hair really liked the dye, so I'm hoping this doesn't mean it will last longer for me, too. In the meantime, does anyone have a cute hat I can borrow?


Dan March 13, 2010 at 4:53 PM  

Precisely the reason my beard and hair are gray. Purple beards just don't work. {*grin*}

(Although I must admit I thought a bit about going green for St. Patrick's Day.)

Tara R. March 13, 2010 at 5:20 PM  

I haven't colored my hair in about 2 years. I am very grey and have contemplated doing something soon, because every time I look in the mirror I see my mom. I'm not ready for that.

Sue March 13, 2010 at 7:36 PM  

I think it is pretty, Michelle. No need to do all 27 washes in one day!

Pat March 13, 2010 at 10:21 PM  

Michelle, I did this same exact thing when I was about to turn 40. I thought I'd like to have lovely dark reddish-auburn hair, so I bought the kit and did the dying according to the directions. I looked in the mirror and saw Ronald McDonald red hair. I exaggerate, but that's what it seemed to look like to me! I washed it 6 times in a row and it still looked RED. Arggh. I did that for several days in a row. I got polite stares and occasional comments like, "Oh, you colored your hair." I was SO glad when it finally faded away. I tried highlighting my own hair and that didn't turn out too well either, so finally when I was 55, I had a beautician highlight my hair for my son's wedding and did that for 6 years, but now I'm back to my grayish brown which is a lot cheaper than highlighting!

WeaselMomma March 14, 2010 at 6:16 AM  

Oh you poor thing! Some things should be left to the professionals. I hope that it washes out soon. After that, opt to have it done by a hairdresser you trust.

Sherry March 14, 2010 at 3:27 PM  

Sorry to hear you don't like it. I think it looks pretty. Sorry no hats though...

septembermom March 14, 2010 at 6:24 PM  

Michelle, sorry for your frustration. It does look pretty with your lovely eyes. You know I'm taking the color plunge on Tuesday. Wish me luck!!!!! I'm a "virgin" in this department.

Steph at Problem Solvin' Mom March 14, 2010 at 10:45 PM  

That totally sounds like something my mom would do/say! I tried semi-permanent color once and had a similar result, and then it faded to hairdresser was able to highlight it to where it looked okay. In the picture it really makes your eyes pop, but if in natural light you don't like it, maybe you could go with highlights.


MaBunny March 15, 2010 at 10:52 AM  

it doesn't look too bad, but i like your natural color form previous pictures a bit better. At one time I colored mine a red blondish color and came out looking like bozo the clown!

Anonymous March 15, 2010 at 1:57 PM  

I have to admit that I am laughing a little too hard at this, but can assure you it is only because I have been in the same boat on more than one occassion (apparently I am a slow learner!) I got my hair highlighted for the first time last fall, and while the cost didn't do much for me, the change was awesome and not at all drastic. Knock-wood, I have not yet gotten my first grey hair and am not quite sure what my plan will be when it happens.

Michelle March 15, 2010 at 8:45 PM  

Dan - You should absolutely go green for St Patty's Day! What a great idea :)

Tara - Yeah, I won't see my mom at least as we look very different, but the greys come early in my family.

Sue - Thanks, although the red doesn't come out in photos for some reason. I talked to a friend on Saturday who admitted she hadn't said anything because it looked "off."

Pat - It is cheaper, and I refuse to go down the road of professional stuff every six weeks. This may be it! :)

WeaselMomma - It actually looks a little better after a few washes. And with the lack of sun we've had the last several days ;)

Sherry - Thanks - and in the pictures it looks a little red but not too bad. It's worse, but my camera can't capture it for some reason.

Kelly - Awww, thanks. I thought about you as I was putting this up, remembering that you'd said you were going to do something too. Good luck!

Steph - Pink? Oh yikes! It hasn't gone there yet at least. A friend mentioned that there are some metals in the home dyes that bring out the reds and oranges that people have issues with, so that may be my problem. If only I'd asked first!

Marcy - Awww, you're so sweet. And yes, at least I'm not Bozo! :)

Nichole - Gee thanks ;) The cost is hard to do, isn't it? At least for me... there are so many other things I'd rather spend money on.

Unknown Mami March 15, 2010 at 8:59 PM  

It makes your eyes look stunning.

Michelle March 15, 2010 at 9:16 PM  

Unknown Mami - Awwww, you're too sweet!

Melisa with one S March 16, 2010 at 6:34 AM  

It's not terrible! You look fine. (could be worse!)

The color I use is very similar to my natural color; I was also just interested in getting rid of the gray and not making any radical changes. Unfortunately I "have" to color my hair about every 4-5 weeks now,because of the persistence of my grays. Pfft.

Karen March 17, 2010 at 8:36 AM  

Okay, it's not that bad, so there's no need to freak. Even if your mom let on that there was.

Sheesh. Moms.

And next time, try a test strand,or check the color midway through the timer cycle. I learned the hard way, too. Ahem.

Mrs4444 March 20, 2010 at 11:41 PM  

Your post is hilarious, and I really expected something clown-like, but I don't think it looks bad at all :) I like it :)

Michelle March 21, 2010 at 7:58 PM  

Mrs4444 - It's funny. For whatever reason, my camera was NOT picking up the true color at all. And I suppose I should be grateful for that ;) It's actually toned down a lot and is looking better now. Phew.

Michelle March 21, 2010 at 11:27 PM  

Melisa - "It could be worse" - gee, that made me feel better ;)

Karen - Ehh fortunately it didn't pick up the real color in the sun, but I'm ok with that. How do you check the color partway through?

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