Thursday, October 6, 2016

Unnatural Hair Colors (Does This Pin Even Work?!)

You see them all around the internet, the pictures of people who have dyed their hair an array of beautiful unnatural colors. They grace Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest day in and day out.
There's peekaboo color, mermaid hair, galaxy hair, fire hair, colored ombre, and the list could go on for the funky color trends that I've seen in the past few years.

But the real question is, can your average human being do this to their hair and have it look good? The answer is yes, but it's not easy.

I am no stranger to dying my hair; I started in fourth grade with chunky auburn low-lights. Since then I have dyed my hair every naturally occurring color, from the blackest black to the whitest blonde, but it wasn't until a few years ago that I took the long desired plunge into unnatural colored dye.

My own hair, dyed cherry red
Over the past few years I have learned a few things about having crazy colored hair.

1. Heat is not your friend!
The first thing I learned is that heat is in no way your friend. While this is true whenever you damage your hair with dye, it is especially true when dealing with rainbow colors.

Not only will you absolutely need to use heat protection when you blow dry/curl/straighten your hair, you also will want to wash it in the coldest water you can tolerate. Washing in hot water will make your colors fade disappointingly quickly. And if you have multiple colors, you will want to wash them separately to prevent the colors from bleeding into one another and creating a muddy icky mess.

2. Wash your hair less often.
I have learned to only wash my hair once a week. Yup, I only let my hair get wet one day a week. Dry shampoo is a staple on those last few days, but because I've been washing my hair only once a week for some time now, my hair is used to it, and I need to use the dry shampoo only if it has been hot and I've been sweating.

My own galaxy inspired hair.
Does that mean I only shower once a week? Nope, I still shower often, but I put my hair up in a shower cap.

Washing your hair as infrequently as possible keeps the colors from fading as quickly.

3. Use conditioning dye in your shampoo and conditioner.
Another way to prevent fading from washing is to put a little bit of conditioning dye in your shampoo and conditioner.  Manic Panic and Punky Color are both good conditioning dyes for this. You could purchase predyed color depositing shampoo and conditioner, but they tend to be expensive and not that great at getting your hair clean.

4. Plan to invest time and money in your hair.
Which brings me to my next point. Having hair that is an unnatural color is an investment of both time and money!

My own hair with a purple ombre.
Should you choose to dye your hair funky colors, you will need to bleach your hair (unless you already have pale blonde hair) before beginning any other coloring. If you were to go to the salon to get this done (which I recommend unless you are 110% confident in your or your friend's bleaching and dying abilities) it could easily cost hundreds of dollars to walk out with colored hair.

And then you have to factor in the cost of the colored shampoo/conditioner and the dry shampoo and shower cap and a swimming cap and it can all add up very quickly.

Should you choose to save a bit of cash and do it yourself at home, you run the risk of really damaging your hair with bleach and not getting the color or effect that you wanted.

5. Explore alternative options to dying.
Has all of this information made you second guess getting wild with your hair? No worries, there are other options for adding a bit of color to your mane without the headache of the upkeep.

My own hair using hair chalk.
If you are looking for a splash of color while not breaking bank, why not use some hair chalk? Fair warning, though, hair chalk may not show up very well on darker hair.

Another great way to add some bright color to your 'do is to get colored extensions. The internet is an awesome place where you can find hair extensions in just about any color you can think of.

This option can get expensive, especially if you want real human hair, but if you are ok with not using heat to style, synthetic hair extensions are an affordable option!

If your extensions are a bit too long for your style, you can always trim them up for a more seamless look.

Finally, if you are looking for color over your whole head, but aren't really up to the commitment of dying, I would really recommend trying out a wig. It's an easy way to try out new colors and cuts while still being able to go back to your normal hair at the end of the day.

Having crazy colors in your hair is a fun way to express yourself, and I really hope that this helps you figure out the best way to go about doing so!

Does this Pin even work? Yes! But with some extra work - if you don't mind that, the results can be well worth it!


  1. These hair colors look good! Thanks for sharing at Funtastic Friday.

  2. Great tips on hair care for bright colors. Sharing this with my two girls. They adore using purples and blacks right now. Thanks so much for joining the DI & DI Link Party, I hope you had fun and found some new friends!

  3. This is great information on caring for colored hair. The different ways you have colored your hair are all so fun and pretty.

  4. Awesome tips! I had my hair bleached a few years back and had so much trouble with it. We went to some mud baths on holiday in Turkey and my hair really did not like it (I'm sure the chlorine in the pools didn't help either...) - I ended up shaving most of it off and starting over! I've been kind of nervy about going lighter again since, but I do love the way it looks still. :) #FridayFrivolity

  5. Hi Jessica, I have been having pink streaks through my hair for years (shhhh, don't tell anyone though. People think it's natural of course), and have learned how to make my colour last. I have it redone every six weeks and love the way the colour changes over the six weeks, but never totally disappears. I must look into conditioning dye as that is something I have never heard of before.

    Last year I finally found my perfect shampoo and conditioner. It's made by Lorvenne and is taylored for both coloured curly hair and is fantastic. It really helps keep my colour and keeps my hair curly and frizz free.... One thing I have learned is never use coconut oil on coloured hair as it actually draws the color big time... And cold water is my friend (brrrrrr....).


  6. I've colored my dd's hair purple before and it was quite the task. I wish we knew about the colored conditioners as this would've help keep her colors bright longer. Thanks for sharing your hair tips on Merry Monday.

  7. Jessica, I love these options, and if I was younger I would so be going Electric Blue! Love the color. Since I don't think I can really pull it off I do color an unnatural red/auburn color. I love that it's not supposed to look as if it's my real color and that it gives me a bit of a boost. I too only shampoo once, perhaps twice a week, it really helps to hold onto the color! Thanks for the other tips, will be trying them out!

  8. Great tips! Thank you for sharing with us at the To Grandma's house we go link party - hope to see you at the next one that starts tomorrow! Pinned!

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