I’m not really a qualified professional at anything (unless sitting on your ass for 95% of your life playing video games equates to ‘qualification’)… but that never stops me from trying to do things that should probably be best reserved for those with degrees, certificates, or classes and credits behind them. Perhaps my worst offense to qualified ‘professionals’ is my die-hard devotion to do my own hair. I know, madness, right? Everyone has a hairdresser. They are both your best friend and your worst enemy. I, unfortunately, have yet to meet a hairdresser that achieves what I want (see: perfectionist) or will actually listen to me when I say something. So, aside from the hair cut once or twice a year (the hair nazis are cringing right now)… I do pretty much everything else myself.
I know I mentioned before I was going to try the impossible–I was going to not only dye my hair but then highlight it… all on my own, without foil, without any prior skill or knowledge. Foolish, maybe, but I prefer the term “adventurous”. Like the time I had my husband (then fiance) bleach my hair for me. Just a note to the ladies… don’t do this, not unless you suspect your husband is gay. Men have no concept of “roots” and how they work.
I have naturally dirty blonde hair, it’s not so much brown as just… dirty. I hate it. My once golden locks now muddled by bastardized genetics. Anyway, this is important because selecting the tone and darkness of dye depends on your “base” color. My hair, at the time of dyeing it, was actually a terrible blonde/bronzey monstrosity. Let’s just say that dyes don’t always mix well with your “base” color. Lesson learned.
Anyway, I selected two widely available products. I actually did this at the end of December, so I’m trying to remember. I selected a darker than desired shade that would also blend in with my roots. This is essentially what I request anytime I go to the hair stylist, because… my hair grows out like a week later and my roots tend to be darker than my natural shade. Very annoying.
I love Garnier products, I stand by them 100%. Their haircolor is especially amazing for not drying out or damaging your hair, too, especially if you have already overprocessed your hair like I tend to do with all my hair products and heat. It also maintains its vibrancy for a considerable amount of time, much longer than other products I’ve tried.
Unfortunately, they were out of Garnier’s Color Breaks, so I had to select something else on the fly. I think I used one of Clairol’s highlighting solutions, but I can’t find it on their site. It had an annoying comb that was supposed to make it “effortless” all it made it was “full of tangles”! I dropped the comb after only a few tries.
I dyed my hair all over first and followed the instructions the highlighting solution gave me. After drying my hair, I immediately started highlighting. As I mentioned, the comb was utterly useless. I took relatively small sections of hair, coated them, ran it through and then twisted to ensure it didn’t get caught in the rest of my hair. I let it all sit for the recommended amount of time…
What I ended up with were not the pencil thin highlights the box suggests. In fact, I’m not even sure how someone could get those unless they spent hours getting pin-sized amounts of hair. Remember, this is essentially bleach that you’re highlighting with and you don’t want to fry your hair (I know allll about this one…)… so that option really sucks. It’s a good thing I like chunky highlights!
The end result was pleasing to me. I managed to get everything even and while it wasn’t as light as I wanted, it still turned out rather well. I’m very pale, so I have to be very careful when coloring my hair. It’s amazingly easy for me to make myself look washed out with just a slight miscalculation of tone/etc.
I got incredibly lucky with the color selection on this one. The two colors blended perfectly and so my highlights weren’t so much “in your face” as they were a subtle lightning factor to the overall coloring. Needless to say, highlighting definitely brings something to the table when it comes to adding texture and variety. I’ll continue to do it… and with my hair a bit darker now, I won’t have to worry about dyeing it every month or so. Sitting here now, I can see my roots, but they’re not as “out there” as they would be with a lighter color.
The most important factor here is how much I spent. I got, essentially, the same thing done (only lighter color) before my wedding and it cost me upwards of $80… and this wasn’t a salon, it was a freelancer. If it had been a salon, you’re talking maybe $100. I have incredibly thick and difficult hair. How much did I spend all together on this?
Less than $20.
Living out on your own and discovering the true expense of things really opens your eyes. I guffaw at all the times my parents threw $100+ dollars on average to get my hair done before. This is so much cheaper!