I finally dyed my hair rainbow unicorn colors!


What was your hypothesis?

I had wanted to do dye my hair crazy colors forEVER, but I have always seemed to have school or a job that prevented me. When I did The Artist’s Way, making my hair crazy colors came up again and again in my morning pages. Coloring your hair is a pretty low-risk experiment, yet it felt somehow scary, like I was breaking the rules. When I saw bright hair dye for sale around Halloween, I decided it was time!

What did your experiment entail?

I bleached my hair, then dyed it four different colors: teal, blue, pink and purple. I would take a single strand of color, paint it two colors to make it ombre, and then wrap it in tinfoil to keep it from dying the hair next to it.

What was it like?

On one hand, the process of dying my hair was awful. The bleach stunk horribly, it took two sessions totaling more than eight hours, and the dyes made a huge mess.

On the other hand, I enjoyed the thrill of changing my hair with pretty much NO idea what I was doing. I also liked the experimental painting I did of my hair, putting color wherever I wanted.

What were your results?

It didn’t turn out exactly as I had envisioned (perhaps more mermaid than unicorn?), but I was pleased with the result. I LOVED catching glimpses of bright colors all around me and how my hair made any outfit way more fun.

I was most surprised by how differently people treated me. Mostly, people were friendlier, more talkative and chipper, exclaiming how much they loved my hair. I just started a new job, and one co-worker was teasing me about fitting in. Then she noticed and said, “Well, you do have some color in your hair. You might be alright."

As a brown-eyed brunette white girl, I am generally assumed to be non-threatening, which is kind of good but kind of boring. Sometimes with my rainbow hair, I noticed people acted more uncertain when meeting me. It seemed I was not so easy to peg anymore. I really enjoyed not being assumed to be the "girl next door!"

Practically speaking, I learned that dye runs when wet and fades fast. The fading was a little disappointing after all that work, but at least I still liked the faded color—it was a fun pastel. The real problem is that wet or damp hair will dye all your shirts, pillowcases, etc. This was a pain! I started wearing a lot of black to prevent problems. I don’t usually wear black, and I actually ended up creating some pretty awesome outfits I never would have tried before. However, I don’t think wearing black is “my look” for life, so I have returned to un-dyed hair.