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color in a bottle

October 1st, 2009 at 10:45 am

I never thought I'd see the day when I would actually use one of those home dye jobs that my mother and aunts used to fuss over. But these days, with the economy as it is, and the cost of a cup of coffee is greater than a share of citi, I trim where I can.

I opted to grow my hair longer to avoid the monthly $75 hair cut, but those pesky gray hairs don't seem to know the meaning of recession. They keep growing and multiplying, which is more that I can say for my 401k. Sure I can spare the expense of getting it professionally colored (once every couple of months won't break the bank) but I feel incredibly guilty about it. I've been putting it off all summer, thinking that I can hide under a hat or up in a ponytail, until this morning...

My partner lives in Montclair, NJ, and while he thinks it is less expensive than CT, I heartily disagree. There are no less than 6 hair salons within a 2 block radius of his condo and they all charge upwards of $100 for color. I don't know what came over me (perhaps the fact that the dow was down over a 100 points this morning), but I walked over to CVS and picked up a box of Natural Instincts (new from Clairol? supposed to be the more natural of the line, no ammonia, has antioxidants, etc etc etc) for $9.99 + tax. Fully aware that this gamble would be expensive to fix.

Lo and behold, an hour later (color, wash and all), no more grays! And my hair does not feel coarse nor smell like I've been hanging out a chemical plant. Woo-hoo!!!

Now, men, I know this may not seem big, but for women who have to maintain their hair color, this is a major coup. I figured I saved at least $90 + tip multiplied by 6 colors per year....

Thank you MOM!

9 Responses to “color in a bottle”

  1. Joan.of.the.Arch Says:

    Congratulations on a job well done! BTW I need to touch up roots much sooner with my hair long compared to when I had it short. With short hair it fluffs up and hides the roots for about 6 weeks. My long hair lies flatter, so the roots show more, even when there is no part in the hair. Have to dye roots more often. Frown

  2. LuxLiving Says:

    I've been coloring my own for YEARS - only I use Nice N' Easy which is way less expensive than Natural Instinct. I buy mine at the Dollar Store most often. Was $2 for a long time, now up to $2.75, but it works for me. I've also done the go to the beauty supply house and buy bleach & colorant separately which is probably cheaper still, but buying the premeasured box is easy enough when I'm at the dollar type stores stocking up on paper goods anyway.

    Good point Joan of Arch.

  3. miz pat Says:

    Oh gosh - so kewl. Now when i do it, i end up spending 75 bucks for cut and color. And I'm feeling codependent with the wonderful lady who cuts my hair too.

    But dang - maybe it would be a good idea to try.

    You have braved into a whole new universe. I salute you.

  4. Ima saver Says:

    I have colored my own hair with nice and easy for 37 years. Just think how much money I have saved over all those years!

  5. dmontngrey Says:

    DH cuts the back, I trim the bangs and color it. Smile

  6. fern Says:

    Hey, neighbor! We live in the same county, who knew til i read your profile?

    I think they're raking you over the coals when you have someone color your hair. Even doing my own, i was sucked in by those L'Oreal commercials ("Because you're worth it") and spent about $8 per box for years before i figured out that hair dye is hair dye is hair dye. I switched to Clairol (no ammonia) at $2.99 a box. I can deal with that, and really, the end results are the same.

    I also prefer to do my own becus at the salon they really slather on that dye so much that it soaks into your scalp. That can't be good for a person. I'm more careful to coat my hair, not my skin, when i apply the stuff.

    But my hair grows so fast i absolutely can't go beyond 4 weeks between dyes. In the interim, when my gray/white roots show, i found a great product from Color Mark, a temporary liquid hair color you apply with a mascara-like wand. It really works well to hide my roots until i can do a full coloring and costa bout $20 for a small bottle that's lasted me 6+ months.

  7. mom-from-missouri Says:

    I pay around $1 a box after the coupon, and can often use bonus bucks to get them free from CVS. Our hair chain place (snip and clip) charges $32 for a color. I've never had it done there, but noticed it on the sign in the window.

  8. Jerry Says:

    I am actually an accomplice to my wife's coloring endeavors... and the fact that it leads to savings is just icing on the cake. I joke around about it with her, putting on a fake accent and welcoming her "to 'Chez Jerry' for zee hair coloring." I'm glad that she does it this way because it saves a lot of money, that we can put toward groceries and our little medical fund (we are overseas and health insurance really only covers disasters here).

  9. whitestripe Says:

    I used to work in a hair salon, and I've always coloured my own hair. Working there made me realise there really is hardly any difference between the dye in a box and the dye at the salon - you're mainly paying their wage. It's nice to get it done by someone else, but why not invite a few friends over for a beauty day and do each others?

    I've never bought it for $1 a box though, here we don't have coupons like you guys do, so a 'good' price on hair dye is under $15 a box Big Grin

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