Monday, December 29, 2014

Are you ready to dye?

You remember Amma, right? She's my best friend, and she currently has blue and purple hair. Everywhere she goes, people go gaga over her unconventional locks and demand answers: How do you DO that? I told her she should start dyeing her arm hair and eyebrows so people might believe that she's a special unicorn with naturally blue and purple hair, but let's be honest, that's an awful idea. How does one dye one's arm hair without dyeing the entire arm? I suppose she could end up looking like a character out of Brave New World, and that could start a new trend, but more likely, it would probably just suck. So, instead of dyeing her arm hair, we went ahead and documented the actual process of making Amma look fabulous.

We start out with some dark roots, which don't look too terrible with the blue and the purple. I know from experience that if she had blonde hair, her roots would look grey and awful right now. This is why I no longer dye my own hair, but I digress. Our before shot:

Isn't she just a frame full of adorableness? Next up, we mix this purple powder stuff with this white cream stuff to make some pasty bleach stuff:

Bleach is exciting! As you can see, the powder is Ion Color Brilliance powder lightener, and the creme is Salon Care 40 Volume Creme. For the next step, I call forth my inner mad scientist and pull on some gloves so I can brush the bleach paste mixture onto Amma's roots. Basically, I just paint whatever looks brown, making sure to put it on thick enough so the roots will properly lighten. This part of the process is best done with a helping hand and an extra set of eyes so you can be sure not to miss any hair.

After all the brown is coated in bleach, you just let it sit there until the hair is the proper shade of white/yellow/blonde. It's all good, as long as it isn't brown anymore.

Don't forget the obligatory towel monster step:

After letting the bleach sit for a good twenty or thirty minutes, we rinsed it out and towel dried Amma's hair. Honestly, I think the platinum roots with the teal and purple looks amazing, and if she really wanted to, she could just leave it like that.

Next step: get the color going! For the purple, Amma prefers Color Brilliance Ion. For the blue, she used Beyond the Zone Color Jamz in Tripped up Turquoise. You know it's extra good because it has a kicky name.

The coloring part of the process is pretty simple: just smear the color where you want it to go. Amma likes to do an all-over touch up with the colors, so her roots won't be more vibrant than the rest of the hair. This makes for some delightfully fun messes:

Once every single strand is coated, simply let it sit there. Dyeing your hair involves a lot of letting it sit there. Amma prefers to don a plastic bag hat and let it sit there for hours on end, and sometimes, she even lets it sit overnight. This time, we let it sit for the amount of time it takes to watch Seven Years in Tibet (while talking all the way through it), eat a pizza, and talk about cats. Cats are a serious conversation for us, so I can safely say we let her hair sit for at least three hours.

Once we were done with our pizza, we rinsed out the hair color, gently towel-dried it, and let it air dry the rest of the way. Amma does not use shampoo during this step, which is important for maintaining the vibrancy of the colors. In fact, the less shampoo you use in general, the better off your color will be. Amma also recommends staying away from hair dryers and curling irons to keep the color from fading too fast, but also to avoid burning yourself. Once your hair is dry, it's time to make smug faces because you know you look your favorite My Little Pony!

Freshly dyed hair looks awesome! It's totally worth all the hassle and the mess and the smell and the plastic bag hats. Actually, the plastic bag hat is awesome in its own right and might be appearing in the regular wardrobe soon. 


  1. Ion is my go-to hair dye also. It's awesome and inexpensive.

  2. I have quad-color hair right now since my attempts to bleach, dye, and cover up all fought for the right to stay on my head. Plus my roots started showing. It works in a weird way.

  3. I always say, "If it works, work it!" Nothing wrong with quad-color hair!