Sunday, August 30

Adventures in Hair Coloring

I will qualify all of this by saying my natural hair color is very, very dark brown, with a Black Irish grandmother on one side and an Italian grandfather on the other, I somehow managed to get the darkest brown hair possible. My husband swore I had black hair when we met.

Ten years ago I discovered some grey hair, not enough to color but enough to bug me.  My adventures in hair coloring started then.  At first I used rinses, these were great as you wash them in and they gradually wash out, nice and easy :)  All hair color went on hiatus while I was pregnant and nursing, and to be honest the grey wasn't that bad.  The need for permanent color arrived around the same time as the peeing in the dump truck incident, please see the July 2005 archive for this.
Since our budget is tight, I color my hair myself.  Why do I torment myself?  So I can afford books, of course.  My hair stylist understands my book obsession and tells me to avoid anything with a burgandy base, it'll turn my hair too red.  Well, the last color I used wasn't burgandy based and it still turned a redish color, this time I've been told to add ash to the color I'm using to tone down the red.  So last time I went shopping I picked up 2 boxes one dark natural brown and one dark ash brown.

This morning I wake up at 5:00, and the boxes of hair color were calling me from the bathroom.  By 5:20 I've mixed my own color with the hope I don't end up a red head, not that I don't love red hair, it's just not for me.  I'm up and ready to start coloring.

Right before I'm ready to start applying the color my husband bangs on the door--he's got to go. It's 5 stinking 20 in the morning and I can't get 1/2 an hour to myself.

We have one bathroom in our house. And it is incredibly small, everything is white, the walls, the wallpaper background, the tub, shower curtain, toilet, sink--I'm sure you get it :)  The directions in the box say to use the conditioner to protect anywhere you don't want color.  Well, I'd need gallons of it to protect me and the entire bathroom.  By the time I'm ready to sit for the 1/2 hour to let the color set, I have to scrub me and the entire bathroom.  I don't know how it's possible but I managed to even get hair color on my left knee, above the gloves up to my elbows, the side of the claw foot tub, inside the tub (I'm not sure how this happened as I was standing at the sink) and I even got a small dot on the Martha Stewart white canvas shower curtain.

Well, it's done.  I'm back to my very, very dark brown sans the grey.  My next adventure in hair coloring is in 8 weeks, maybe I'll talk my sister into doing it for me:)


Bookwormom said...

I think our hair color is probably pretty close. I'm very interested to hear of your adventures as I'm starting to go grey & eventually I'll start coloring too. I kinda doubt I'm brave enough to do it on my own, although I agree the prices for going to a colorist are truly scary. How can you tell if the shade of brown has a burgundy base to it? Did you mix half regular and half ash? Inquiring minds want to know!


Tara Marie said...

Not that I'm an expert, but from what I can tell anything that says red or auburn on the box will have a burgandy base and as soon as you mix the bottles you can tell the color is a purple burgandy color, if you get a dark brown it looks almost caramel in color, it gets darker as you're applying it.

This is my first time mixing the dark brown with the dark ash brown, I did 2/3 dark brown and 1/3 ash. It will take a few weeks to see if it will fad to red. I'll let you know :) I've been told you basically experiment until you get the right mix.

Good luck--LOL

Though you may want to try a rinse instead it fads out in about 28 washes, so it's not permanent.

Bookwormom said...

Hmm..thanks for the advice! Oh the trials of aging! LOL :)

CindyS said...

I started to colour my hair in my early 20s because my sunny blonde hair of my youth had turned mousy and dull. So I have no fear of colouring my hair although I can't say I keep it up every 8 months. I seem to remember before vacations like Thanksgiving and such. I have blonde so the roots can get pretty long. Bad Cindy. And I refuse to pay more than 7 bucks for the bottle.

I have also taken my hair colour and one tone lighter or darker and then put them in my hair alternately row by row. Apparently people noticed the 'highlights' in my hair. Best 7 bucks ;)