Last year, I rocked the granny hair trend for months. While I loved having silver hair, upkeep was a pain. It faded to blonde fairly quickly so you have to touchup every 3 weeks to maintain the silver/white color.
With work and travel, I had to pick alternate colors which faded less or faded into pastels. Enter mermaid hair which is a blend of My Little pony Colors like lilac, aqua and silver. You can even throw in some pink, if you’re feeling it. Lilac will fade to gray, yay! Aqua will fade to a mint green or light blue.
The three steps to mermaid hair.
Step 1: Bleaching (get this done professionally)
Your hair needs to be bleached to platinum blonde or as close to it as possible. I encourage you to go to a salon to have this done unless you are only doing a small section of your hair.
Bleaching takes skill, it could burn your scalp or result in major breakage, if you don’t know what you’re doing. My hairdresser at Saviour’s Salon, San Francisco is incredibly skilled with color and was able to take my dyed reddish-brown hair to platinum then to silver in about 5 hrs. I went to have the back of my hair bleached by someone in San Jose who was less skilled and the strands of my hair weren’t bleached evenly, which meant the dye after toning deposited unevenly. I’ve been correcting this bleach job little by little with bleach washes at home (will post separately).
If you bleach previously dyed hair, you will have to watch your hair turn weird colors as the bleach lifts through the various dyes. My hair turned orange then pink when it was being bleached. During color correction, the hair which was dyed lilac would turn green before blonde.
Step 2: Toning (home or salon)
Once you’ve had your hair bleached to a level which is light enough to show pastel colors, usually about a level 9 or 10, you will need to tone it to remove any brassiness. Brassiness is the orange or yellow tones in your hair and this will affect the pastel color. You want to cancel the yellow with an “ash-based” toner. I’ve used Wella Color Charm T18 White Lady lightest ash blonde toner and Schwarzkopf Igora Royal Permanent Color in 9.5-1 which is a pastel ash blonde on various occasions. My current favorite is the Schwarzkopf combination.
Option 2: 1 to 1 ratio of developer to toner
Schwarzkopf Igora Royal Permanent Color Creme 2.1 oz (9.5-1) in pastel ash blonde
Schwarzkopf Igora Royal 6% 20 volume Color & Care Developer
Step 3: Dyeing (your chance to shine)
Now that your hair is light and ashy, you can create your unique mermaid look. You can do alternating sections of color, do 2 colors on each section for a dip-dyed look or paint the colors in random ways to create a more interesting look. First pick the colors you want, then get a friend to help you section your hair and paint the colors on.
You will need at least 2 color bowls and 2 color brushes, or a bowl/brush for each color you are adding to your hair. I used pastel lilac and aqua from One ‘n Only Argan Color Perfect Intensity.
Don’t forget to use gloves or your hands and fingernails will look like you were finger painting like a champ! I was distractedly watching football and running to the bathroom to paint the colors on while doing laundry. A little focus and I would have noticed that I forgot to put on gloves…doh!
- Add some of the lilac dye to your shampoo and conditioner to deposit color after every wash to keep the silver parts from going blonde too soon.
- Make sure no one else uses your shampoo and conditioner, their hair will turn green if they highlight or bleach it.
OOTD: Outfit of the Day
I hate shopping and crowds, which means most of my clothes remix basics, old favorites and accessories in my closet. The only new items in this remix is the tank top and leopard flats. Clothes/accessories subscription services add the on trend pieces to my wardrobe. As I continue my weight loss journey, I will add a feature on how to look great as you lose weight.
- H&M long tank top
- Asymmetric sweater tied in the front
- Random skinny jeans
- Drew Pointy Flats in Leopard print
- Long blue necklace from Beach Bunny Swimwear in Newport Beach