If you have or have ever dyed your hair an unnatural hair color, there are some things that are just plain different about your beauty routine–and occasionally your social life. People say some surprising stuff when you’ve got a weird color while your shower becomes host to some irritating experiences.
Given my transition to being blonde that you have all heard about approximately a dozen times at this point (and there will be more to come, once the before and after shots go up!), and my eventual switch to blue, I decided to prep myself for the change by recalling all the awkward things about having dyed hair. Sure, it is probably my favorite beauty decision I’ve made and then regularly reverted to for the past decade, but it is also important to keep in mind that it’s not all fun and games and selfies where your hair looks like cotton candy.
1. Taking a shower and unintentionally dyeing it the color of your hair.
Oh sorry roommates, you didn’t want me to renovate the bathtub using my head?
2. How openly people criticize it in front of you.
Just as with piercings, simply because somebody’s hair is dyed doesn’t mean they don’t have feelings. :(
3. Your hands being stained for days after you dye your hair.
Sure, you can use gloves while applying it to your hair, but who wants to wear gloves in the shower? And oh look! Now your hands appear to have symptoms of hypothermia.
4. When creepy dudes at bars as if the “carpet matches the drapes”?
This is approximately when I break out my vagina dentata.
5. People reaching to touch your hair.
Don’t do this! Why would you do this? Don’t!
6. How good it looks for a day! And then…and then…
And then a week later you look like you’ve been coloring your hair with those tinted toilet waters.
7. Accidentally dyeing your face.
In addition to #3, getting any water sliding down your face from your hair results in an awkward tint. If you’re dyeing it blue, you look sick; if you’re dyeing it purple; you look really sick; if you’re dyeing it pink, you look like you’ve been exercising for six hours. You just can’t win.
Note: You can protect your hairline from the dyeing process with petroleum jelly, though sometimes after rinsing for a while, this becomes less effective.
8. When little kid compliment your hair and the parents look terrified.
When a child asks me why my hair is the color it is or how it got this way, I usually respond with, “Because I listened to my mother until I was all grown up, then a fairy made it this way.” Yes, it sounds ridiculous, but at least the parents usually look relieved.
9. How everybody knows when you’re shedding.
If there happens to be a stray hair sitting on the table and it’s brown, it is rare that people automatically know whose it is. If yours is pink–well, you look pretty guilty, buddy.
10. “Don’t you want to get a job?”
Everyone on my team (at my job! In an office! At a real
live company!) is excited to see mine be blue. One of my fellow employed coworkers has a pretty streak of pastel pink. My boss is thinking about popping a streak in hers, too. Long story short: You can have wonderfully weird hair and work.
11. When a celebrity dyes their hair and everyone’s like, “OMG INNOVATIVE.”
Sure, we are obsessed with bright haired celebs, too, but let’s not forget that wild colors for hair have existed for decades. Tish and Snooky Bellamo opened the first Manic Panic–my personal favorite brand for bright shades–in New York City in 1977. And according to Wikipedia, “in the 1661 book Eighteen Books of the Secrets of Art & Nature, various methods of coloring hair black, gold, green, red, yellow, and white are explained.” Basically, folks have been changing their hair hues for centuries; none of us are original, hooray!
Click to the next page for a relatable teen experience, a moment of post-dye horror, and the best kind of compliment!
12. The first time you dye your hair ending in disaster.
At the fashionably ripe age of 13, I bleached my very thick, very bushy, very long hair with one package of bleach. I looked like a cheetah, and not in a cool way.
13. How quickly your hair suddenly seems to grow.
You never thought you hair was quite this fast, but now that you don’t want visible roots, it seems to go at warp speed.
14. When people say, “But your natural hair is so pretty!”
I promise, I know what my natural hair looks like and I’m the one who has to live without it for a while. I’ll be all right! If I wanted to have the same hair my whole life, I would be Jennifer Aniston.
15. The awkward unfunny jokes relatives and strangers love to make.
Oh, the “did you dip your head in a paint can” joke again. Good one.
16. Making it through the entire dyeing process without staining anything and then BAM. You see a droplet.
Naturally, it is on the most expensive rug in your house or the nicest towel you own.
17. Being told you look “just like” whatever celebrity has that shade.
Depending on my hair color, I was told I looked like the doppleganger of Katy Perry, Tori Amos, Madonna, and some others; all are incorrect, I have no similarities to them besides the hair hues. The only one I have ever sort of seen is Kate Winslet in Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, but even that’s a stretch most days.
18. Strangers asking to take your photo.
Still not famous. Just have weird hair.
19. Trying to copy bright hair you saw on Pinterest and winding up with anything but.
You can comb through “inspiration photos” all day long, but at the end of the day, it might not turn out anything like how you wanted it to. I really wanted hair that looked like Gwen Stefani‘s pink ombre wedding dress when I was in tenth grade, so I did it. A few weeks later, I saw an ultra-stylish twenty-something walking around the mall (I clearly grew up in a cool place) with purple tips, so I added those, too. I flew too close to the bright, bold sun and wound up with hair that looked like tie-dyed vomit.
20. Staining the pillow at a partner’s house.
Whoopsiedaisies. It’s their fault for not giving you a color-coordinating sham, or something.
21. How awesome it feels when an old person compliments your hair.
Oddly enough, most of the people who said rude things about my bright hair were between my age and my parents’ ages. For some reason, elderly people always seem to love it, which feels like the wisest approval has been gained. So this one isn’t annoying at all–it’s actually wonderful!
Do you have dyed hair? If so, tell us your experiences in the comments!