September 8, 2007

Hair Color and More Things To Blame On My Parents

Caramel my @$$!!!

Women, why do we do this to ourselves? While shopping in Target yesterday, I longingly looked up and down the aisle of hair coloring products. That is, I stole the occasional glance in between bouts of chasing my toddler back and forth and trying to keep her from climbing out of the cart.

Thinking of coloring your hair? Try to give yourself time to think about it when you have as few distractions as possible. In other words, try to leave the kids at home! I swear, with as many compliments as I get about “HOW CUTE!” she is I have had ZERO offers to actually purchase her.

As I chase her back and forth, I often hear, “She is so CUTE!!!"

“Thanks! I’ll sell her REEEEEAL CHEAP!”

Yet, they always just keep walking. Hmmm…

Anyhow, I made a joke to the woman standing near me that I really should stay out of this aisle. She had no children with her. She was not distracted. Yet, she bought no hair color. She had the time and presence of mind to make the right decision and she did. She did not choose to color her own hair on this particular day.

Unfortunately, I did not enter this aisle equipped with the same presence of mind. I needed to see my looks improve. Today. And for less than $8.00. (The ‘Cheapmommy’ wins every time!)

Now, this really isn’t a horrible and traumatic experience like I’m making it out to be. In the end, I chose the ‘safe route’ and went with something called ‘Caramel.’ However, my hair is not Caramel now. It’s sort of a strawberry blonde base with beige highlights.

Beige highlights? How on earth did that happen?

It could be worse. At least they are not pink.

Picture it: SICILY, 1924.
(Sorry, Golden Girls flashback! I think I’m better now.)

Actually, it was September of 2005. Almost two years ago today. I was five months pregnant with my third child. I was about to turn 30. I was about to be the maid of honor in the wedding of one of my oldest and dearest friends. I was about to go insane from the dark, dingy roots that were slowly taking over my head.

I spoke with the nurse at my five-month checkup and told her my dilemma. She said that hair color isn’t really proven to harm the baby, but you never know. Apparently, a lot of women color their hair while pregnant. Since I was past the first trimester, I probably wouldn't really be putting the baby in harm’s way. However, if I wanted to be on the safe side I could just use a level 2 product (which does not contain ammonia) and make sure I am in a really well ventilated area.

Hey! I could do that!!!

I was so eager to purchase my new hair color that I couldn’t wait for a good selection. I wanted to color my hair today. In the place where I live, there is a little grocery store about ten minutes away from me. When I say the store is little, I mean it’s little. They had, like five colors to choose from. Two of them were actually Level 2 products. One of the colors was really dark and I wasn’t looking for anything too drastic. I just wanted to roots and tips to match a little better until I wasn’t pregnant anymore.

The other option was called ‘Medium Auburn Brown.’ Now, let me first tell you that my hair is actually naturally blonde. As of lately it’s been more of a ‘dishwater blonde’ but it is blonde nonetheless.

Sometimes, I still wonder what my parents were thinking when they decided to breed. My natural hair color and skin tone don’t look very well together when I leave it up to nature. Seeing my fair skin and freckles makes me believe that I look good in hair with reddish hues. Without chemical intervention, I just look really tired. Given the time, I’m pretty sure I could find reasons to blame my parents for anything. And I’m sure my children will do the same for me.

Oops! My attention span is nil these days! So, I had wanted to go darker so that my roots wouldn’t need touching up and I could, hopefully, go the rest of my pregnancy without chemical intervention. (Did I mention I know nothing about how hair color works?) I chose to listen to the optimistic side of myself, as well as the impatient side and the ignorant side. Those aren’t very helpful dynamics, let me tell you.

My hair, in is natural state, is a dishwater blonde. I have light blonde highlights. I figured a little ‘auburn’ could do me some good. It shouldn’t be too overwhelming, considering that its’ mixed with ‘medium brown.’ In fact, it looks quiet lovely on the box…

Famous. Last. Words.

My hair grabbed all of the auburn and none of the brown. I looked like Claire Danes when she starred in ‘My So-Called Life!” I just needed some combat boots and an old flannel shirt to BE her. To top it off, my lighter tips started to rear their ugly heads after a few days and turned pink. PINK? Yes, pink.

Did I mention that the dresses we were supposed to wear in the wedding were red?

Red dress?

Black shoes?

Bright red hair with pink highlights?

I ended up going to a ‘professional.’ I’m going to use that word lightly because she turned my hair burgundy. BURGUNDY? That is so not what I asked for!

I was in the wedding with my burgundy hair and everything was fine. It was better than bright red so I was no longer in danger of my hair blending in with my tent. (Oops! I meant to say ‘bridesmaid’s dress!’ Remember, it was a maternity bridesmaid’s dress.)

After a few months, I was able to color it again with a Level 2 ash blonde. That toned it down quite a bit and 1YO could be born to a mother whose hair color might have even been found in nature. It was strawberry blonde by then and looked okay.

This brings me back to yesterday. I was once again blinded by the allure of the hair color aisle. No matter what happens, it could have been worse, right?

It has been worse. Sometimes I feel like I’m my own ‘before’ picture and very rarely an ‘after.’ Which is probably why I keep ending up in that stupid aisle. At least now I won't settle for just a few to choose from. That is, until I'm desperate and impulsive again.

After all, it's just hair right?


wildtomato said...

This is why I let other people make the fashion decisions for me. Although, remember how bright red my hair was for the wedding? Yeah, that guy isn't my hairdresser anymore.

Jessie said...

Ok, there is a rule to dying your own hair that you need to be made aware of. If you have red hair, AT ALL, and Im talking just red highlights, or if your hair can be considered to be a shade of red, or even if it doesnt particularly look red to you but you know that a few of the hairs on your head are red...DO NOT DYE YOUR HAIR BLONDE. Read the boxes, they say that if you have the slightest speck of red in your hair, the dye will actually intensify your red and abandon the color you picked. Case in point, I am a natural blonde with red highlights. I dye my hair with platinum blonde dye, and TO THIS DAY my hair is as red as my son's, who IS a natural red head. Hair dye is scary, and if you are going to play with it you have to be aware of this stuff. Another thing is to always cut a chunk off of your head and dye it, and see how it reacts to your hair.

Better luck next time.