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Why I Dyed My Hair Purple

purple hair
Image Source: Jessica Abbott

I did it. I dyed my hair purple. I know in the grand scheme of things, this wasn’t that big of a deal, but I spent a year agonizing over the decision. I’d always wanted pink or purple hair, and it looked so great on these fashion bloggers on Pinterest … but I just couldn’t bring myself to pull the trigger. What was holding me back?

Two things really, or should I say two people — my daughters.

I understand that this decision isn’t that important. Especially when I consider the countless women fighting the greatest battle of their lives, and losing their hair in the process. I don’t mean to make light of their struggle, or insinuate that bad hair is a serious issue in life. It’s not — it’s just hair.

But I couldn’t take this step without considering my two little girls, who look up to me in every way. I had to wonder … how would a mommy having purple hair affect them? How would their teachers see me? Or their friends’ parents? How would this affect decisions they make about their own appearance in those young, impressionable teenage years? Would my purple hair shape their identity in a way that I might regret someday?

These were the questions that haunted me and postponed any decision for months on end. Every time I thought about the hairdresser, I’d ask myself, “Is today the day I finally make the call?” I started to look at Kool-Aid packets wistfully, and even bought hair chalk to experiment. It seemed like my purple hair was shaping up to be nothing more than a pipe dream.

But then it happened.

I was styling my hair one morning and flipped up my bangs, only to discover a hive of grey hairs taking root. Gah! How did those get there? It was in that moment that I realized a year of indecision had passed. While I waffled, I got a whole year older.

I was a few months away from turning 37, and just beginning to realize what this means. Call it a midlife crisis if you will, but I suddenly understood that if I wanted pink or purple hair — what was I waiting for? Was I waiting until I turned 50 and all of my kids were out of the house? Now wouldn’t THAT be a sight, rolling around with my AARP card in a pink beehive and glasses?!

So, I finally called the salon. I went for it. Not cured of my apprehension completely, I decided to get some purple highlights first. Ones that could be hidden when needed, or boasted when styling my hair in different ways. I am calling it “conservative funky.”

purple hair
Image Source: Jessica Abbott

My family was shocked when I debuted my look to them at home. My kids loved it (my son thought I was turning into a purple minion!). My husband, on the other hand, was not a fan. But the more I thought about it, the more I realized — this wasn’t something I was doing for him, it was something I needed to do for me!

I needed to prove that I’ll never be too old to do something “crazy,” so long as it is safe. To show my daughters that they don’t need to fit into a mold, and that they can do fun things like this (tastefully) when they reach an appropriate age. And at the end of the day — it really is just hair. Purple grows out as well as any other color, or it can always be dyed back.

Most importantly, what it really showed me was how much importance I was putting on having a “normal appearance.” It made me think about things like Locks of Love a bit more, and ways we can help women who have much greater struggles than I’ve ever had.

And lastly, it made me feel cool, fun, sexy, and dare I say it — totally RAD. It’s also starting to wash out after a month now, which I guess fun hair colors tend to do. So I guess the question now is …

What color should be next?

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Article Posted 4 years Ago

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