Hair, Thoughts

the best (and worst) things about fantasy hair

How time flies – it feels like it wasn’t long ago that I wrote about what my purple hair means to me, but I hadn’t even been purple for a full year at that point. And now, we’re over two years in and still going strong. If you follow me on Instagram, you saw that I mixed it up a bit with the color last time I was at the salon, but I’m still a purple gal through and through. I love my purple hair, but it has downsides too. So, if you’re considering dyeing your hair a crazy color, you’ll get the straight dope right here.

Portrait of the artist as a purple girl

PRO: I am instantly recognizable.

When I’m meeting with someone for the first time, especially in a work context, we can dispense with all the awkward “well, I’ll be wearing a red tie and a black blazer” second-guessing. All I have to say is “I’ll be the one with purple hair” and it’s taken care of.

CON: My memory has not evolved to match my distinctiveness.

People know who I am, because I’m the one with purple hair. I’m used to think I was really good at remembering people, even if we’ve only met briefly, but I definitely have felt more adrift now that so many more people recognize me.

PRO: Everything you wear gets punched up a little.

Even a plain black t-shirt looks a little cooler with purple hair. Half the work of getting myself colorful enough to face the day is already done when I wake up. I have purple hair, man. I look rad.

CON: Everything you own will be at least a little purple. Everything.

I’m not just talking about the obvious stuff like your hands and your bathroom counters and your towels and your hair styling tools. The inside back collar of most of my shirts? Purple. Random spots on a blanket? Purple. Under my fingernails? Purple. The pop socket on the back of my phone? I have no idea how, but yep. It’s purple.

PRO: Little kids think you’re magic.

Girls have asked me if I’m a princess. Kids will stare and get super pumped when I wave at them. One time a kid smiled so hard at my hair that his gum fell out of his mouth. Babies are generally entranced. It’s a pretty cool feeling.

CON: The upkeep struggle is real.

I’d honestly forgotten how much work, comparatively, goes into maintaining a fantasy color until I overheard another stylist at my salon explaining it to a client who was considering going fantasy for the first time. It really is a commitment; thankfully, I’ve figured out a relatively low maintenance routine for myself (I have a full post about it here, though I am experimenting with some new products right now! Update to come!), but a lot of time, energy, money, and thought does go into my hair.

PRO/CON: It’s an attention-grabber.

Fantasy colors are definitely way more common now than they’re ever been, but unless you live somewhere much cooler than I do, a full head of a rainbow color is going to get you attention. I’ve mentioned elsewhere on this blog that I’m kind of a weird mix of shy and Tinkerbell (I need applause or I’ll die). I’m pretty much always thrilled to get compliments and questions about my hair, but if you’re not the kind of person who thrives on that, you may have trouble. I’ve been lucky that no one’s ever made a rude comment, but I know it’s something that’s a possibility when you draw attention to yourself. But it’s also a possibility if you’re completely average and unremarkable in every way, so I figure I might as well do what I like.

If you have fantasy hair: did I miss any of your pros or cons?

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2 Comment

  1. Reply
    February 9, 2018 at 12:48 pm

    That second to last sentence is such an excellent point.

    1. Reply
      Penny Snark
      February 9, 2018 at 6:45 pm

      Thank you! I feel like the one thing I’ve learned is you can’t control what other people think or do, so you might as well do what makes you happy.

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