I've had average hair all my life. It's never been too thick or too long. My hair texture is not too curly or too straight, in fact, it's wavy. So you know what I mean when I say it's average.
I didn't begin experimenting with my hair until one (fine) day. I was watching Priyanka Chopra rockin' off that lob in Dil Dhadakne Do. That, on top of the blazing heat, pushed me straight to the salon. I chopped off my hair till my collarbone. And loved it!
But the decision to colour my hair red didn't come from another movie. It came from my second love, Instagram. As a part of my job, I scour through whacky beauty trends all day (No, I don't like applying foundation with a condom) and it was about time I acted on the things that fascinated me; being a redhead.
Talking about my 'journey' to becoming a redhead... it was a LONG one. I had light brown streaks when they were considered 'cool' and loved those too. Basically, this wasn't my first time with hair colour so I knew what I wanted.
I didn't want my hair to scream RED hence I decided to go subtle. I went with a colour that had an iridescent red touch to it and told the hairstylist to try balayage (hand painting) instead of applying the colour globally. Two hours later, to my surprise, my hair looked the SAME! I could hardly see the tinge of red I had opted for! The salon was very well lit yet the hairstylist clicked a picture of my hair with a flashlight to show me what a wonderful job he had done with my brief of not wanting my "hair to shine red". Nonetheless, I was disappointed. Yet, I paid the price (literally) and went home disheartened.
The next day, I expected my colleagues to notice anything different or give me a compliment. Some noticed nothing. Others asked me to get a refund! Yes, it was THAT unnoticeable. Well, I'm not the kind to back down because of someone's incapability to understand what I wanted. Since my idea was to keep it subtle but significant, I decided to go global with the same hair colour, hoping it'd show more through my mane.
I went to the salon again and convinced him to fix the mess he had made by colouring my hair at half the price he would charge for global normally. Oh, and I decided to go the same hairstylist who had the power to make the red look brown. I'll never understand this sorcery.
I was so excited to get my hair done again and look like I've come straight outta Pinterest. Yes, that was my aim. I decided to ditch cleansing my hair (that's basically bleaching them to make the colour pop) even though the hairstylist suggested it. He applied the same colour all over and I waited for the miracle to happen. Apparently, he waited longer than he had to... wait for it! While the head wash and conditioner massage were on, I tried to get a peek and couldn't believe what I saw next. I could see no traces of red but ORANGE. Yes, he coloured my hair ORANGE! The only thought I had in my mind was 'OMG WHAT, I'm going to look like Wilma from The Flintstones!'.
I asked the hairstylist what the hell he had done to my hair but he told me to calm down and wait till he dried them off and styled them. I lost my patience while he struggled to dry them faster and called my mother. Now that I look back, her reaction was priceless! She compared my hair to my Nani's henna-dyed hair. Yes, the '70s orange-red hair only grandmothers can fathom. I was not gonna show my face with orange hair. And then came the third application.
Amidst my tears and Snapchat, my mom rose to the occasion. She talked to the manager and told him to fix my hair no matter how long it took. Mind you, this was at 9 pm. Had I been the old, brown-haired me, I would've calmed both of us down but needless to say, I was so angry, my hair would've turned red anyway!
I asked for another hairstylist since this one didn't understand me. The new hairstylist came to my rescue and added the base colour (brown) to my roots with another shade of red. This time around I was waking up all the gods to be with me. I was praying as he blow dried my hair. Will the third time be the right time?
I heaved a sigh of relief. I finally got what I exactly wanted. Now, I have three shades of red in my hair with a tinge of brown. I have my hair flip moments from time-to-time but none of them can make me forget this experience.