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"How do you get your hair to look like that?" Pastel Pink Hair 101.~!

I N T R O D U C T I O N

So, to most people, hair really isn't a big deal at all. It's something the majority of us have.
Hair's great, it keeps our head warm. And sometimes it can make us look 100% cool...
I've always been one of the people who cares a lot about my own hair but not at all about others'.
So recently, I've had a LOT of people coming up to me and asking me how I do my hair...
How do I style it? Do I cut my own bangs? How do I get my hair that shade of pink? Highlights?
Well, I tried to think of the best way to summarize how I do my hair, and I thought about a video.
But, then I remembered that I dye my hair in the shower, naked... oWo 
After throwing away that idea, I decided to make a 'Hair 101' blog post, and here we are~!

D Y E I N G   M Y   H A I R

I've already written a review of the dye that I use for my hair, but I'll speak about it briefly here...
I use 'La'Riche's 'Directions' semi-permanent vegan-friendly hair dye in 'Carnation Pink'~
The pot looks like this:


As you can see, it looks quite bright in the pot, but it has a slightly magenta appearance...
This is because it's actually a pink & red combination dye, rather than just pink alone~
The reason for me using this dye is because it looks really really good as a pastel shade~!
These usually range in price from £3-£5, depending on whether you buy online or in-store...
I would usually order through eBay, where they're cheaper, but if I'm running out, I use a store.
So far, the only store in the UK where I've found these dyes is Blue Banana.
Now, the colour we're going to be aiming for is like this:


It's quite a light, pastel shade of pink, and it gradually gets lighter on the ends~
I'm going to be showing you how to obtain this shade, but as for the gradient...
I actually don't know why my hair does it, but I've always naturally had a gradient, no matter what colour,
Even my natural hair was lighter on the ends... Strange, right? Some people pay lots of money...

Anyway, before you even attempt to dye your hair pink, you're going to need to bleach it.
(Unless your hair is already a very light blonde, and is the same colour all over)
For bleach, I always do it at home, and I buy my bleaching kits in bulk rather than individual.
I'll buy an industrial-sized bottle of peroxide, and an industrial-sized bucket of bleach powder~
This actually works out a LOT cheaper than buying a kit each time you need to bleach your hair...
(And you'll need to do so more than once if you want your hair to stay pastel.)
If you look on eBay, you can usually find these industrial-sized bleach supplies for around £15~

One thing I'll say about bleaching your hair is, DO NOT leave the bleach for longer than instructed.
Seriously, don't. It might look like the colour hasn't lightened, but trust me, it has.
My mum paid the price for this mistake when her hair appeared not to have lightened at all,
She left her bleach on for an hour and a half. And sure enough, all of her hair snapped off at the roots!

Okay, so, when you're dyeing your hair, the 1st time you do it, you're going to use undiluted dye,
This means you're just putting the dye on as it is, without doing anything to it or diluting it with anything.
The reason is: the first dye is always the hardest to take, and you want it to be as strong as possible.
Although you may want pastel hair right away, it's best to play safe and ensure that your hair will turn pink.
Besides, if you're using Carnation Pink, it's a nice enough colour on its own, anyway~

Once you've dyed it the one with undiluted dye, you'll be able to get it to a pastel shade in future~
Basically, leave your hair as it is, and then wash it a few times over the week as you usually would...
You'll notice that the dye fades, this is because it's semi-permanent, it won't all wash out, though.
We want this to happen.
Because, once it's washed out enough, we can pastelize it. 
Once you've washed it maybe two or three times, it's time to adopt my pastel technique~

Now, you'll see what my hair looked like tonight before I dyed it again...


As you can see, it's a veeeery light pink (too light for me!) and the ends look orange :O:

Time to dye, fiend~!

DILUTION~


Step One: Take a white conditioner, and try to find one that's quite pH neutral. Definitely not acidic.
Put some of this conditioner into a separate pot (as you can see, I use this pot regularly haha)
As for how much to use... Enough to thoroughly cover your hair. This will be the dye-base.
If you have short hair, you won't need as much as I have here, but my hair is semi-long, so... 
I like to use this conditioner by 'Dove', because it's supposed to be for old hair (mum buys it)
But it makes my hair so soft and shiny, and so far, I've never had any problems using it as a base~




Step Two: Take your trusty Carnation Pink hair dye, and also a spoon~ 
I actually recommend using a plastic/disposable spoon, but we don't have any, so... T^T
I just have to use the same spoon each time now, since it's been dyed pink xD
You're going to use the spoon to scoop out some of the hair dye and put it in with the conditioner~
I recommend using the dye to conditioner in the ration 1:3, use 1/3 as much dye as conditioner.
Why? Because that way you have enough dye to be strong enough to take, but enough base to pastelize.


When mixed together (thoroughly, you must be very thorough) it will look like this:


Super easy, right?
Now, all you have to do is shampoo your hair as you usually would, and then use this instead of conditioner.
That means you can put it on in the shower when you get in, leave it on, and remove before getting out. 
I recommend leaving this on for around 15-20 minutes, so don't attempt to do this if you're in a rush~
I always dye my hair the night before, and then leave it wet whilst I sleep, because it locks in the colour. 

M A I N T E N A N C E

A lot of people are put off having brightly coloured hair because it involved either bleaching or stripping...
(Your hair!)
Of course, everyone knows that over-bleaching leads to very damaged, dry and horrible looking hair.
But, it's actually fine to bleach your hair as long as you know how often to do it and how long to leave it~
I've been bleaching and dyeing my hair since I was around 11 years old, because I HATE my natural colour
Because of this, I've always been very careful with my hair, because damaging it would be awful
I'd have to spend the rest of my life with really damaged hair, because unfortunately...
Once you've damaged your roots, you can't really recover from that. (Thus, my mum still has no hair.)

How long should I wait before bleaching again?
As long as you can, really. Try to definitely avoid bleaching twice in the same month. 
Once at the start of each month should be fine, as long as you're deep conditioning your hair in between.
I try not to bleach my hair unless I really have to. The main issue for me is the growth of my roots.
I was blessed/cursed, depending on how you look at it, with very fast-growing hair...
Whilst this means that I'm very close to achieving my ideal hair length having had it cropped only 3 years ago,
It also means my roots grow out super fast, and they stand out a lot compared to pastel pink hair~
I usually leave a minimum of 3 weeks between bleaching, but then I guess it depends on the condition of your hair and how quickly your roots grow out, etc... If your hair is in bad condition, aim to rarely bleach.

How do I make my hair super shiny and soft?
Products are your friends. A lot of people say "There's no point spending money on hair products."
Guess who the people with dull-looking hair are... Think of your hair as an extension of yourself.
You like giving yourself nice things, nice food, taking naps to recharge or just to relax, etc...
Your hair likes being given nice things, too. And, if you're nice to your hair, it'll be nice to you~!
Of course, that's not to say you should be spending hundreds on hair care products. >.<
The brand I 100000000% recommend to you all is Tresemme, which is a brand here in the UK
(I don't know if you guys have Tresemme? But you can buy it online and get it shipped...)
It's designed to be high-quality enough that you could use it in a hair salon, while also being affordable
And unlike most brands who claim this, Tresemme does this really well~!
I always use their 'Keratin Smooth' shampoo and conditioner, and buy a repairing hair masque when I can.
(Also, their products are always white in colour so you can use their conditioner as a base for hair dye~)
Sometimes they also release products like heat protection spray, etc. And I totally recommend those too~
Heat protection spray is seriously important, guys. You don't realise how much you need it.

Any other advice?
Get your hair cut regularly. Even if it's just an inch of dead hair taken off the end.
The more often you get this done, the faster your hair will grow, and it also means you don't get split ends.
I personally hate having dead, broken ends. I get my hair trimmed a LOT.
I used to hate getting my hair cut because I just wanted it as long as possible, but it's worth it in the long run~