The Emotional Stages of Dyeing My Hair at Home

It's all going to be fine. Don't let the panic set in.
Publish date:
March 31, 2016
clairol, hair color, hair dye, at-home hair color

If you read about the series of disasters that my hair color has gone through, you'll know that coloring my hair at home is an anxiety-inducing process. The formulas of the colors are always changing and reacting differently with my hair, so sometimes I end up with the perfect red for my taste, and other times I end up with firetruck-red hair or even a purply shade.

So, for everyone else's benefit, I decided to record my thought process throughout the very emotional 20 minutes it takes to color my hair at home with no idea what I'm going to end up with in the end. (Spoiler alert: I was happy with the outcome.)

First things first, I'm using a new color: Clairol Natural Instincts Light Golden Red. Note: it's now shade 7GR, but it says this shade was formerly 15RG. Why do they keep changing these names? I can't keep up. Anyway, I decided to go with this one because it looked the most natural without being too bright and a lot of the other natural reds looked too dark. So I grabbed this one and hoped for the best.

Without further ado, here's what went through my head when I colored my hair.

Emotion #1: Excited

I'm ready to go. I picked a good color, I won't leave it on for too long. I'm feeling pretty darn good at this point.

Emotion #2: Skepticism

Now the uncertainty sets in. Whatever I put on my head is going to stay there for quite a while or I'm going to damage it a ton by trying to fix it. So maybe this isn't worth it and I should just go back to having brown hair.

Emotion #3: Carefree

I probably picked the right shade. And if I didn't, who cares? Not me. It's only hair.

Emotion #4: Nothing

I've just got to keep shaking this up until it's all mixed together. Just keep shaking your fears away — it's all going to be fine. Don't let the panic set in.

Emotion #5: Optimism

This is going to be totally fine. I've just got to make sure my roots are covered and then I'll move to the ends of my hair. Then I'm pretty much done. Just keep focusing on the application.

Emotion #6: Uncertainty

Well, now there's no turning back. But maybe I should jump into the shower now, wash it out, and just see what it looks like. But if I don't let it go long enough, it's going to look weird. Just sit for a few more minutes. Then rinse it out as quickly as possible.

Emotion #7: Relief

After peeking out of the shower curtain 12 times during my shower to see if I look like The Little Mermaid, I can finally relax. It's still wet, but I don't look like Ronald McDonald, so that's a win in my book! Once I blow it out, I'll be able to see what I'm working with.

Emotion #8: Feeling Myself

It's brighter and lighter than it was before, but I'm loving it! Now that winter is over, I was in need of an updated color and thank goodness this one turned out the way it did.

  • What are your biggest beauty anxieties?
  • Do you have any crazy at-home hair color stories?