Like so many folks out there, I’ve been doing some quarantine hair.
I usually wear my hair in a pixie cut. Sometimes I’d grow it a little bit to about eye-length, like back in 2015 when I left my job at Disney and promptly dyed my hair bright pink. But it was often shorter than that. And for the last few years, even when I let the top grow, I’d still keep the sides and back shorter.
I have gone a little longer on occasion; in 2016-2017, I gritted my teeth and grew my hair out long enough that I could get a perm from a professional. (I hoped for more body waves, since my hair is generally stick-straight and limp, but didn’t hate the tighter curls I ended up with.) You can see the last perm I got in my Jeopardy! posts, after we dyed the perm pink. By that point I was tired of the perm expense, and went back to the pixie cut. I still had pro coloring for a while, but that got pricey as well, so I eventually ended up back at my original brown.
Back in March 2020, when the COVID-19 kicked in, I decided that I was going to stop cutting the top until I could go back out in the world again. (Which means I’ll probably still be growing it for another few months.) I kept the sides and back short, but let the top just do its thing. Starting in August or September, I finally had enough length where I could twist damp sections of hair into curls and let it dry overnight, then wear those curls for a few days. In December, I also dyed it a level 1 blue-black.
But I decided that I wanted a brighter color! It was way too much black, and nowhere near enough blue.
So, here was my January 2021 hair color process. My blue-black starting point on the left (Do you see any blue in there? I could, only just barely, way up close in the right lighting!); bleaching as gently as I could in the middle; and my final goal of blue-green on the right! (With photobombing Flapjack in the background.) The center image is the closest we get to my natural limp straight texture, but since it was blown dry, it has a little more body than usual. The curls in the side pictures are done by that twisting method I mentioned above.
I intentionally bleached a bit less than I could have, shooting for the point where my hair transitioned from orange to yellow (which I nailed pretty well). I knew that I probably wouldn’t be able to get super white hair, since I was not just lightening my hair, but also removing a darker color of dye. So I set my goal for blue-green, aiming for a yellow result from the lightening, so I could then put blue on top of that. It’s also way gentler on the hair this way; I definitely could have bleached twice to get to white, then put blue-green on top of that, but by aiming for yellow and working with blue on top, I’ve kept my hair healthier and not damaged it as much. (I’d like to think Brad Mondo would be proud.) I also avoided my roots, and didn’t color the super-short sides.
The color I used here is Iroiro turquoise. It was very easy to use, smelled fine, and the color came out nice and rich. Though I may move on to Deep Blue or Blue Natural next, or a deeper blue from another brand; I’ve shampooed once since coloring, and it’s already fading. Blue is always a tough color, it never wants to stick around for long! For the bleaching, I used 30 volume Ion Sensitive Scalp, and Zotos UltraBond powder lightener. (The lightener was recommended by the gal at Sally Beauty; I don’t think it was much different than the old classics like PrismLites or Quick Blue.)
As usual when I start going for the fabulous colors, I’m already thinking about what color I’ll go with next. I may start moving my way around the color wheel, from blue to purple to magenta. Or I may just try some different shades of blue from different makers, to see what I really like. Time will tell!