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Real MOM Mondays: The Dye Hard Truth

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As I am sure you can imagine, dropping the “bipolar bomb” last week was a very scary and incredibly vulnerable decision for me. But perhaps nothing is as scary as what I am about to reveal right now in the 2nd edition of Real MOM Mondays.


I. Am. Not. A. Natural. Blonde.


I can hear your gasps of shock. And I may even be hearing some gasps of judgment for making light of bipolar. I assure you that I am not.   If I have learned anything in this life, it is that humor truly is one of the best medicines. (Laughs and Lamictal seem to be a winning combo for me.) I didn’t want this series to only hit the heavy stuff. Sometimes, a mama just needs to talk about her hair color.


Now – back to my “big reveal”. I dye my hair. I dye my hair a lot quite honestly. And, I know that I am not the only mama hitting the bottle.
Before Olive was born, I didn’t blink at the cost of being blonde. It was a part of me, and what I considered a fixed expense. You know, like food, gas, and the electric bill. It costs what it costs. A girl’s gotta eat and a girl’s gotta dye.


But let’s be real. A girl does not have to spend $400 every four weeks. That is almost $5000 a year on hair color! This figure got me thinking, so I did a little math using the Simple Savings Calculator from Putting $400 a month into a savings account with reasonable interest from the time your child is born until his or her 18th birthday turns into roughly $163,000 – a great start for college. (Or perhaps cosmetology school…that is clearly where money is being made!)


If Blondes do have more fun, then this figure brought me back to brunette. It still wasn’t enough to make me give up my blonde, but it created a commitment within me to find a better solution.


For me, a better solution was moving to a single process. For years, my blonde was created with a mix of highlights (by balayage) mixed with a second process to lighten my base.   A 2-step process that took nearly 3-hours from start to finish. Forget the budget, what mom has that kind of time every 4 weeks?


I was under the impression that a single color, high lift tint would make my hair fall out. Yikes! In reality, it was the opposite for me. When I received highlights, it was years of color over color making my hair dry and brittle. Now with this one-step process, only ¼ of an inch of my hair is colored each time. My amazing stylist paints it on, I sit for 20 minutes, she washes it out, and she dries it. Without a haircut, it takes about an hour. It’s a huge time saver, and don’t even get me started on the financial savings! (It’s hundreds).


Single processing is not for everyone, nor is skimming on your hair care. This post is not meant to suggest that or judge the cost of your locks. I am simply sharing one way I found to increase the college savings budget without making a big personal sacrifice. Basically, it’s a lesson in how to quench your selfish desires while also considering your child’s future. (wink.)

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