My hair … was supposed … to be purple.
It isn’t, and all I have to show for my efforts are some raw places on my forehead and under my ears.
It started a year ago, at last year’s Relay For Life. There was a gaudy purple wig that we were clowning around with; everyone was so amused when I put it on that I immediately came up with the idea of actually coloring my hair purple for the 2013 Relay. At one time, I even thought I’d do it a few days before Relay, in order to serve as a conversation starter beforehand.
About the time of Hee Haw and Howdy a couple months back, I asked Relay board member Judi Burton, who is a hair stylist by trade, for her advice. She suggested I go to Sally Beauty Supply and buy something. But when I went there a couple of weeks ago, they only had one temporary product, and it was so pale in color that the woman from the shop didn’t think it would show up very well. I later messaged a friend of mine who I thought might know. (I didn’t want to post a public request, because I wanted to surprise everyone by showing up at Relay with my purple hair.)
I went online and found the directions for the old punk solution – unsweetened Kool-Aid powder, combined with conditioner to help it soak into the hair follicles. I bought some disposable plastic cafeteria-lady caps at Walmart which were supposedly intended for use with conditioner, hair color, etc. I figured I’d wear my purple hair to Relay, then wash it out as best I could afterward and cut my hair short (I usually keep it a lot shorter than it is now during the summer).
I got home from work yesterday, got some dinner in the oven, and went upstairs to do the deed. Three packets of grape Kool-Aid, plus a small hotel-sized tube of conditioner which I had saved, coincidentally enough, from the Relay For Life summit last fall. I worked it all through my hair, put on the cap, and eventually secured the cap with a headband of sorts made from plastic wrap. It was sloppy, and I was sweaty, and I even got a little of it on the armrest of my sofa which I had to work out with a sponge.
Because, I suppose, of the acidic nature of the Kool-Aid, it stung when it got in my eyes. The scratchy plastic surrounding the elastic band of the cheap cap rubbed raw places on my forehead and under my earlobes.
The instructions had been to leave the mess in overnight. When bedtime came, I’d already had the stuff in my hair for six hours, but I wanted to let it set as long as possible – I knew the purple would have to compete with my brown hair. I covered my pillow with a trash bag and laid a flimsy old windbreaker over that, and I hoped I didn’t dislodge the cap with tossing and turning.
I woke up about 3:30, and just couldn’t get back to sleep for thinking about that stupid cap and how irritating it was. I figured that by that time, the stuff had been in my hair for more than 10 hours. I got up, rinsed it out thoroughly, and toweled my hair dry. It didn’t look purple at all. The directions said, however, that the color showed up better when your hair was dry, and so I thought maybe there might be a little touch of purple once my hair was completely dry. I went back to bed.
I got up this morning, and my hair is not purple in the slightest, just a tiny little bit darker than normal. Even the normally-white hair at my temples is just gray.
I intended to sleep later than 7 a.m., and I’ll probably nap on the couch at some point after breakfast. I have a call to make on some Relay business a little later this morning, and then I hope to get to the ag center some time between 11 and noon. I plan to be there for the duration, until noon Saturday (and whatever teardown we have to do immediately afterward).
I so wanted to show up with my blazing purple hair.