I think I’m about to do something fucked up to my hair—and I’m going to bore you cross-eyed talking about it. Yes, I’m back on my let-it-go gray kick (though, this afternoon I caught a coworker glancing too long at the top of my head and my commitment wavered). It doesn’t take much to trigger me and I’m a little superstitious. Seeing three women in Brooklyn in the same week—a 20-something Asian with full-on gray (it looked natural but maybe it was some anime thing because you know, Asians=anime) another Asian closer to 40 with big white streaks and a 30-something woman who happened to be with this writer I like (yes, it’s weird to recognize a writer, and weirder because I’m not plugged into any literary scene) waiting for the subway—made me think it was a sign. Three’s a trend.
But I can’t just let my hair grow out because I went sort of auburn in May before I went to Spain. It was only semi-permanent and I didn’t intend to keep it but the red has been sticking around, not fading as much as I thought it would and now it looks like I have warm highlights. It’s summer, maybe I should be keeping a warm hue? That clashes with my real hair, though, which I’d say is dark brown but is black by women’s magazine standards. (I learned that in Marie Claire today when they used Lindsay Price as an example of a black-haired celebrity. Is she really that much of a star? This only shows the lack of black-haired big names.) I know the ombre thing is all the rage, but no one’s doing salt and pepper fading into brown and auburn.
So, my plan is to cool it all down and let the roots grow out as they may. I plan on attempting this with blue hair dye. Not Manic Panic, but professional Redken hi-fusion in the blue shade that’s meant to mix with other colors to create natural balanced shades. I’m guessing it will make the red-gold an ashy darker brown, and my dark browns look blue-black which is fine but I have no idea what it will do to the gray. The only obvious patches right now are in the back of my part (the area being stared at this afternoon) and at my temples by my ears; the rest is underneath and hidden unless a breeze blows. I’m not going for punky because that would be sad, though a few midnight blue streaks wouldn’t bother me. How true blue will it really turn out? This is not totally uncharted; I’ve tried this with semi-permanent blue, also by Redken, and it only turns the grays a slight periwinkle because grays aren’t like bleached hair; they repel instead of absorbing. This could be the same…or totally out of control. But I won’t be back in the office until August 1, so any weirdness can be tamed before I get back from vacation.
To my knowledge, there are only two photos (I gave the third to my friend I’m not really in touch with anymore, who I called Seaver—I wonder if she still has it? I also wonder if that was supposed to be whom—no matter how many time I look up the who/whom rule, I promptly forget it) from when I had color crayon blue hair my freshman year in college and they’re not in my possession. It seriously looked like a wig, in a good way.
In middle school before Manic Panic existed and before I realized I needed to bleach to get intense color, I tried everything to get Wonder Woman comic book-style highlights. That was my ultimate goal, which I may soon realize decades later. Jazzing in Mood Indigo and Sebastian’s Black Orchid cellophane (which has been discontinued) were my go tos.
I noticed Kat Von D had blue hair in a recent commercial, but I’m not going for a rockin’ surgerized with jeggings look.
The only example I can think of, of a grownup with blue streaks that otherwise dresses and wears make up conventionally (though fashion-y, obviously, just no face tattoos) is that host of How Do I Look? who replaced Finola Hughes. I think Jeannie Mai looks cute, but I am not a tiny Vietnamese-American stylist.
I am not going to discuss Katy Perry’s wig, nor Juliette Lewis’ dabbling (actually, I like these photos).
Well, come Monday I’ll be another year older and if I continue my tradition of posting an unflattering birthday pic you’ll be able to see the horror that I choose to inflict upon my hair.