$30 dye job

July 11, 2010 at 9:31 pm 13 comments

So my roots have definitely been showing themselves lately:

Rude little things. And the rest of my hair has seemed a bit too brassy & one-dimensional for my liking, so I decided to attempt color, highlights & lowlights on my own tonight.


Base color: Clairol Nice ‘n Easy Perfect 10 #7 Dark Blonde Butterscotch Boom
Highlights: L’Oreal Touch-On Highlights #H90 Iced Champagne
Lowlights: Clairol Nice ‘n Easy #118B Natural Medium Caramel Brown

Base color. I tried the comb-thing it came with, and I hated it. I had zero control – it just kept dripping all over – so I switched to the regular tip.

Gotta saturate those ends.

There we go. Time… and rinse.

Hmmm… what’s under there?

Not bad. And dry?

Not bad at all. I wanted a sort of dull blonde base since my natural color is sort of a dull, dishwater blonde, so hopefully it will reduce drastic root outgrowth.

Once dry, I pin up the top half in order to apply highlights and lowlights beneath.

Lowlights in the tube; highlights in the tub.

I used a lot of clips to keep the hair separate. The lowlight color really looked like soy sauce. Or chocolate syrup. DO NOT EAT THAT, CARA! DO NOT LICK THOSE GLOVES. Ahem. Once applied, I sort of squeegeed the color with my fingers in order to saturate from root to tip.

I then undid and redid the clip for one more base layer underneath. I focused mostly around the front, not too much on the back.

And then lastly, I took the clip out completely and did the top.

Oh man, what a mess!

Ready to rinse…

And now to dry…

Wow, red face from the blow dryer. Sneak peek!

Dry – now to style.


And more pics in different lights & angles for you:

It could be blonder, but the base and lowlights will fade, I think.



I’m pretty happy with it. Like I said, could be blonder, especially for summer, but at least I got rid of the roots and added some much needed dimension.


Entry filed under: Hair, Nails & Makeup. Tags: , .

metropolitan party chic the white stripes

13 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Carina Connelly  |  July 11, 2010 at 9:42 pm

    Great job, Cara! Are you sure you don’t want to be a stylist?!

    • 2. Cara  |  July 11, 2010 at 9:45 pm

      thanks, Carina!! I actually think that would be fun… but I’d still be nervous because I have definitely gotten upset & cried at stylists before! That’s why I feel better just doing it myself sometimes. Only person to get upset with is myself!

  • 3. Andrea  |  July 11, 2010 at 9:43 pm


    • 4. Cara  |  July 11, 2010 at 9:46 pm

      Thaaaanks! :)

  • 5. Sarah  |  July 19, 2010 at 7:59 pm

    Cara, you are my haircoloring mentor. I was freaking out because I couldn’t find my usual hair color (Loreal Couleur Experte in Butterscotch Cream), but then I remembered this post and decided to give it a try.

    I ended up going with Garnier Nutrisse in Honey Dip for my base (dark golden blonde), Toffe Swirl highlights (golden blonde) and then Ginger Spice for lowlights (light auburn, because I like to go just a little bit red).

    I was surprised at just how light the highlights turned out, but the Ginger Spice was surprisingly subtle and just brought out the red tones that I aim to get when I color my hair. All in all, this might be better than my old standby.

    Now if I could just figure out a new haircut that I won’t hate…

    • 6. Cara  |  July 19, 2010 at 10:11 pm

      Omg, so glad to hear it!! And hilarious – I used to do L’Oreal CE Butterscotch Creme too!

      I just saw the pic on Twitter – I think it looks great! Time-consuming process; but when it works, it’s not so bad!

  • 7. autumnal transition « here's looking at shoes, kid  |  September 25, 2010 at 4:40 pm

    […] you look, it’s time for a change. While I did initially love my color the last time I did it (the 2nd most-visited post on this blog), that was 3 months ago now, and the outgrowth has been showing itself once again, despite my […]

  • […] – 560 hits 5. very rachel berry – 565 hits 4. Ladies of LOST: Kate – 923 hits 3. $30 dye job – 1,003 hits 2. gap city flat – 1,082 hits 1. how to make a care bear costume – […]

  • 9. Meg  |  February 21, 2012 at 7:01 pm

    This looks so good! I’ve always been too chicken to try my own hair.. I am constantly changing my color..but now I am confident it can be done! :) Amazing job!

    • 10. Cara  |  February 23, 2012 at 6:23 pm

      Thank you, Meg! This post is from so long ago – I forgot my bangs were so intense with this haircut! It’s a whole lot of work to dye and do highlights and lowlights, but it is certainly much cheaper than getting all that done at a salon. If you have patience and are able to choose colors that work – and then apply them carefully – it’s not so bad to do on yourself every now and then. Good luck! Feel free to share pics if you attempt it! :)

  • 11. Julie  |  September 2, 2012 at 6:21 pm

    This might be easier to do on short finer hair. I have dark long curly hair and I would never have the time or patience to do it myself. But honestly I have played around with box colors before n it doesn’t work the same b/c my hair is so naturally dark.

  • 12. Katie moriarty  |  November 7, 2012 at 11:28 am

    Brilliant!really nice flattering colour.I’ve never coloured my own hair,but it really needs it!

    • 13. Cara  |  November 10, 2012 at 7:07 pm

      thanks, Katie! it takes a little practice, but it’s not as difficult as you might think. :)


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20-something Chicagoan, pop culture lover, and graduate of the Clinton Kelly School of Fashion, sharing & snarking on shoes, frocks, jackets, patterns, textures, trends, celebs & more


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