I come home and my sister says “You just couldn’t resist could you?”
Blue Highlighted Hippie Chick is back. Under the deft hands of my new favorite solo-business woman, I once again have purpley-blue peekabolites.
Intentional enjoyment accomplished.
I’d say it is a social experiment. I’d say it is a quarter-life crisis. I’d say it is just a phase. It is probably all three plus a healthy dose of joie de vivre.
It is a celebration that it is my head and my choice what to put there. I otherwise have long, straight, brown boring locks. I’d rather spice it up a little. Why in earth’s blue orbit not?!
I don’t have a corporate job to worry about. I’m not interested impressing anyone who would be put off by it. And damn it, the touches of blue make me smile when I look in the mirror.
It is fun bordering on effing awesome (like arms full of tattoos but with less permanence). What IS effing awesome is that I can do it – be in the persona of the blue haired freak — until it stops being fun. Then I can do something else.
My first time
I hemmed and hawed for months before finally going for it.
I had been doing red. Even to say “I’m thinking bright, stoplight, red highlights” the first time to my tattooed, hipster, hair artist was an act of daring and bravado. I said that I wasn’t sure I could rock the look.
She looked me square in the eye and said, “well I don’t really know you, so I don’t know if you can.”
I started to sweat. Damn.
“I’ll go for it” I said.
I loved it.
I went through many variations of red and even slightly pink.
Then I contemplated, kvetched, couched on blue for months before finally determining that I – me – was getting blue highlights. After a 3 minute conversation with a tiffany-box blue coiffed woman in the doorway of a random shop on 9th who self dyed I had product recommendations and fair warning: “Don’t get into trouble.”
I giggle when I think about what she meant. “Girl with blue hair” is a pretty good descriptor for a police blotter.
A few days later I put my head in the hands of a friend and took the plunge. A few glasses of wine and hours later her tub looked like a smurf met a ghastly end in it. I had shots of purple-blue running through my brown locks.
I loved it.
I love rocking this look.
Over the last few two years I have gone back to red and even more subtle shades of lowlights. When I made the attempt to get back to the blue a few months ago it wound up a nice raven but not exactly what I like.
The combo of Blue Velvet and Blue Haired Freak is my favorite. Sleek and shocking.
Paired with a smile I get more compliments and easy opens into conversation than anything else I have ever tried. Oh sure, I get other types of looks – I live in the South remember – but those I find endlessly amusing too.
In a Florida parking lot a young man gawked at me as I was heading his way. He reached over and pulled his gal companion close to him as they walked. He continued to stare me down as they passed, eyes twinged with puppy fear, protectively clutching his girl’s shoulder as if I might leap out and smear my freak all over them. I laughed at that one for a while.
There have been doubetakes and some less than favorable looks from the old blue hairs but they are far outweighed by unsuccessful attempts at circumspect appraisal (in low light you can hardly see them) until finally asking — is that blue? Yes, yes it is.
I mean really, how often in life to you get to have your look admiringly appraised in a Southern drawl to blue steel? “You know,” he said, “like on a gun.”
Damn but I feel like a Bond girl.
Awe-tinged compliments hit me the most. The wistful “I like your hair” or “cool highlights.” As if it was some real badge of honor and not sold for $10 on Amazon. You too can have these highlights for just 3 easy payments…
But it isn’t that easy is it? It isn’t the money, it is the leap.
We rarely get the chance in life to try on different personas. We get stuck in our look, our ruts, our routines. It’s a shame.
I’m remind of that every time I catch someone looking but trying not to look. Eye contact. Smile. So easy.
Why not try a different hair style or clothing choice? Why not see what it feels like to walk about in that skin. How do reactions to our person change? What new types of people do we attract? Repel? How do we change as a result?
Questions can only be answered by trying. We owe it to ourselves to dare to experiment.
Don’t hide your blue freak desires under a bushel. Wear them proud.
I hope you are enjoying whatever look you’re rocking this day,
Whatcha think? Should we conform or strut with our alternative streaks?
PS. I’m taking my super-stoked sapphire tinted head to Killer Tribes this weekend as well as knocking 2 items off my Journey List. I’m excited, nervous, and know thus I am doing the right thing. You can follow my adventure on Twitter (always the best way to be in touch). Especially if you’re in the Nashville area or going to the conference please drop me a line.