Shallow post: I’m vain. Yes, I know.

glenn5 swung by yesterday for dinner (home baked veggie pot pie and beer bread) and a movie (Gentleman Prefer Blondes) and I realized beforehand that 1. I needed to visit the Kaiser-Permanente leeches to get my bi-monthly blood test and 2. We were out of both fresh mushrooms and tofu. Errands in the morning, yo.

At the grocery store (sporting a lovely new bruise on the inside of my elbow–I didn’t get the nice technician whom I adore, but a rather brusque guy who was fine with the needle entry, but too cavalier with the exit. Ouch.), I saw a hair coloring kit for do-it-yourself highlights. I’ve wanted to try highlights for a while now–something burgundy or a dark copper–but didn’t want to spend what it would cost at a salon to have it done professionally since I didn’t know whether I’d like it enough to make it worth the money. The virtue of hair coloring, if I hate it, I can always go back to black. But it seemed excessive to spend $60-100 on a professional job to decide I hate it, and then go home and color over it. This do-it-yourself concept seemed like a good trial run.

This morning, I don the plastic gloves, shake up the solution (which includes a powder that turns the mixture bright, bright pink so you can see where you’re applying it), and fiddle about with the comb-tool thingy supplied.

Lessons learned:
1a. If your hair is longer than shoulder length, you will get colorant on your shoulders and back.
1b. For long hair, highlights should be applied by a color buddy. Doing it yourself, especially for the back of the head, is awkward and a good way to get bright pink goo on your arms.
2. Previously colored hair doesn’t take highlights as well as new growth.
3. I suck at using the comb-tool thingy.
4. There’s more peroxide in the solution than they’d like you to think, and when applied to hair in an intense glop/strip for a half an hour, is a recipe for damage.

End result: my hair isn’t quite dry yet, so I’m not sure what the final outcome will be like. But from the damp scrutiny I gave it in the mirror, I’m not impressed. The streak I did at my temple seems to have really fried that hair and it’s gone frizzy, even damp. For the majority of the length of my hair, the color didn’t take, while it worked quite well at the roots. Light roots, black hair. Not exactly the look I was going for.

I’m going to apply some silicone treatment to minimize the appearance of the damage after it’s dry, and perhaps change my part around a bit to see if that will conceal better the overabundant lightness at the roots. But otherwise, my general inclination is to give it a week so I don’t stress out my hair with two coloring attempts in less than a few days, and then dye everything back to a nice, solid black.

Unfortunately, this weekend is the Georgia Big Picture Conference, which means that I can either go out in public like this, or re-color sooner than I’d like to.

Maybe this weekend would be a good one to explore some hat fashions.


Writing Stuff

9-day So-long-and-thanks-for-all-the-fish reject from Ideomancer.

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22 Responses to Shallow post: I’m vain. Yes, I know.

  1. lousy_timing says:

    I am certain you’re still beautiful even with less-than-perfect highlights. It’s a pity those kits aren’t easier to use, because the salon is rather expensive. I’ve taken to only highlighting my hair in the darkest months to compensate for the cost, and then I spend as much time out of doors as I can from spring until fall’s last crimson blush.

    Unrelated question: Is Hobkin the chocolatey color that he appears to be as opposed to the northern black skunks we have visiting us?

    • Eugie Foster says:

      Ah. Sun as natural highlighting tool. Very wise. Alas, the sun just burns my hair. It doesn’t do anything pretty to it. The sun doesn’t do anything pretty to me in general. It triggers my flare-ups . . .

      Is Hobkin the chocolatey color that he appears to be as opposed to the northern black skunks we have visiting us?

      Yes, indeedy he is. Domesticated skunks come in a slew of colors other than B&W–including cream, champagne, smoke, burgundy, and lavender–that you’re unlikely to ever find in the wild. Hobkin is a chocolate chip (“chip” because of his markings). As a bit of skunk FYI, black-and-white skunks are illegal to own as pets in Georgia.

      I wanna hear more about your wild skunk sightings! *clamor clamor clamor*

      • lousy_timing says:

        I know, I’ve been remiss in skunk tales. I’m having a bit of a flare myself, and it’s making me angry. 🙁 I suppose I should be pleased since without them, I don’t seem to have any other signs of PMS any longer, but still, pain from hell and fevers? COME ON!!!

        I’m thinkin’ a forced menopause might be in order. 😉

  2. girlsonfilm says:


    Could I get a recipe for your veggie pot pie? It sounds awesome!

    • Eugie Foster says:

      Re: recipe?

      But of course!

      1 can creamed soup (potato, mushroom, broccoli, etc.)
      2 1/2 cups vegetables (red potato, broccoli, mushroom)
      1/2 package extra firm tofu
      1/3 cup milk
      1 cup cheese
      Spices – garlic, onion, thyme, pepper, salt
      2 layer pie crust

      Chop potato into cubes, broccoli into bite-size pieces, slice mushrooms, and dice tofu.
      Boil potato and broccoli until tender.

      Mix soup, milk, vegetables, tofu, and spices in a bowl. (Spice to taste)
      Line pie tin with 1 crust
      Pour in mixture
      Crumble 2nd crust and cheese together, sprinkle on top
      Bake 400 degrees for 30-40 minutes

      It’s something of a vague recipe, but it’s very forgiving of a bit extra here and there, easy to make, and very yummy. Enjoy!

  3. cricketshay says:

    I think I pay about $85 for my highlights, but that includes a hair cut, wash, and style. I was like you, afraid to try it and not sure I’d like it. I was lucky and found a great stylist whom I trust. When I need a pick me up, I go have my hair done. Great for the ego and times when the flares get me down.

    I’m sure you are still beautiful. I did try an at home kit one time, but had my sis do it for me. I didn’t think I could a good job alone. I hate coloring my hair and it all stems from this one time…when I was 16. I wanted to be blond. Bad mistake. I ended up with carrot icky red hair. I swore never to color it again. I didn’t until I discovered Alieen(my stylist) and highlights. hehehhehehe


    • Eugie Foster says:

      I obviously did not learn from my experience in high school when I decided I wanted blue hair. A professional was needed, a friend was enlisted. Bad blue things happened.

      I rarely visit the salon because of the expense, and for the most part, my hair is pretty plug ‘n play as long as I don’t ask it to do anything different. Obviously, I should have re-considered for something as complicated as highlights. Fooie.

  4. humblepie says:

    After years of coloring my own hair, I am a die hard let-the-salon-do-it convert. yes, they are expensive, but I shop at thrift stores for my wardrobe to balance the $ out and justify the expense of the salon. Good luck with your highlights!

  5. coronalrain says:

    From someone who has fried my hair more times than I can count

    Neutrogena clarifying shampoo will help to pull out the highlights you just put in while making your hair all sorts of soft and stuff. Deep conditioning is also a big favorite of mine, but I have th dry curly hair so need that most of the time

    • Eugie Foster says:

      Re: From someone who has fried my hair more times than I can count

      My hair has become, in the last few years (thanks to the Atlanta heat and humidity) rather curly as well and I’ve had to develop a whole new care and maintenance routine to keep it from frizzing–which it still does on bad days. Deep conditioning, hurray!

  6. keesa_renee says:

    Aww. It’s okay. I’ll bet you’re still beautiful, and if you feel too self conscious…well, they make some beautiful hats these days. 🙂

    • Eugie Foster says:

      Thanks, sweetie. My hubby assures me I don’t resemble a video game character, so I’ll just deal, hatfree, until enough time has passed to re-color it. Meh.

      • keesa_renee says:

        :grins: I like your way of putting it. 🙂

        My hair has natural highlights, so I don’t have to worry about coloring it…not that I would, anyway, but it’s nice to have them.

        My sister actually used a new shampoo this summer (we’re pretty sure it was the new shampoo…it was a citrus scent, which might help explain it) that bleached her hair. Unfortunately, it didn’t give her nice highlights or turn her blonde all over; her hair was splotchy, bleached splotchy blonde. Poor Boo.

        She doesn’t wear hats, but she did wear a bandanna more often than she usually does…the effect is just now starting to fade (but her hair is still much lighter in splotches than her natural ash-brown hair), and that was last spring!

        So, you’re not the only one. 🙂

  7. Anonymous says:

    You tried highlighting at home after the blue hair fiasco? I HAVE NO SYMPATHY!

    When I was 17 I decided that I’d like a lighter fringe. So I did the home peroxide thing and took it too far. My fringe went white. Then I decided that brown hair was boring, so I put a semi-permanent red rinse through it. It didn’t show up on the rest of my hair, but my fringe went bright orange (we’re talking neon here) and stayed that way for months. After that I vowed never never never to do home colouring again.

    When I went back to uni and had to economise, I started going to a budget cutter to get my hair done. Big mistake. Humblepie is right. Hair is something that needs to be left to professionals.


  8. gardenwaltz says:

    i’m assuming this kit came with some kind of super/ultra/supreme conditioner. don’t despair until you’ve tried it. i have dyed my hair several times, including quite recently and there is always a moment of ‘what have i done.’ stay cool and remember black hair dye is really easy to apply :).

    • Eugie Foster says:

      Yep, it came with conditioner which I applied, and it helped, but my hair is still stripped in places. I can cover it up and diminish the appearance, but damaged hair is damaged hair. Eh, it’ll grow out.

      • keesa_renee says:

        :is curious: How long do you like your hair? Mine’s past my waist, and I only have an inch or two trimmed off the ends every 9 mos-1 year…if I damage it, either I have to cut it short, or I’m stuck with it for ten years or so. :-/

        • Eugie Foster says:

          I like my hair as long as it’ll grow. When the pictures were taken from the shoot which this icon is from, my hair was past my waist. But over time–especially after I moved to Atlanta and my hair took on so much curl from the humidity–it’s been more prone to breakage and other hair distress. These days it’s only slightly past my shoulders and refuses to get much longer without looking really straggly. I miss my long hair. I guess it’s still technically considered “long,” but I remember when it was really long. Sigh.

  9. Anonymous says:

    Ah, my one girly-girl thing. I’m good with hair, even my own. In school, I hated team sports and spent PE class hanging with the prissy, fashion-obsessed girls on the sidelines.

    Perm, colour, cut? What do you need? Good with makeup too.

    On the lessons learned front. Hair colour always gets splattered all over the bathroom. And it isn’t always obvious what damage (to the sink, cabinet, walls) has been done until it’s well set and impossible to clean off.

    Through successive colourings, I’ve made a righteous mess in the bathroom.

    Anyway, I bet your highlights look pretty cool.

    Pat Kirby

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