My Fabulous New ‘Do

I got a phone call from my hair salon about a week ago. It turns out that the new stylist (Halina), who had been hired to replace my former stylist (Amie), who had left hairstyling to become a medical technician, has broken her ankle really badly and had to return to Ontario to get rehab for said broken ankle1.  But not to worry, they’d found a new stylist (Emily) who was much like Amie and Halina – young and fun and awesome and great with colour – and so they were very sorry that I’d been bounced around from stylist to stylist but they really hoped I’d be happy with Emily.  So first off – points to the salon (Image West) for their great customer service. I was totally impressed that they took the time to call me and explain what was going on and to go out of their way to find a stylist with the same spirit as the one who I originally started seeing there2.  And it made me feel even more guilty for having gone to a totally different salon in a fit of spontaneity and patriotism to get my Canada flag red hair for the Olympics3.

One of the reasons that I started dying my hair in the first place is because of my atrocious grey hairs.  I mean, I wasn’t even 30 and I had grey hairs!  WTF, Mother Nature? 4  Up until the Olympics, I’d always dyed my hair lighter, because in my head I seem to think I’m blonde, despite my natural colour being dark brown.  The nice thing about lightening my hair is that, even when the roots start to show, the greys blend in with the blonde and aren’t so obvious.  Sure the roots look pretty obvious, but I’d rather have it be obvious that I dye my hair than have it be obvious that I’m greying5,6 But when my roots started showing with the red ‘do, the greys were glaringly obvious next to all the dark red plus dark roots.  So it was off to see Emily to return to my pre-Olympics colour.

Now, when I dyed my hair red, I said, “It’s no big deal.  It’s just hair. I can always dye it back whenever I feel like it.” Apparently, this was not as easy as I thought.  I told Emily  that I just wanted to go back to the colour I had before. She looked at my red hair. She asked if I had a photo of my old colour on my phone. There was looking at photos in magazines to find what colour I wanted.  There was consultation with the salon owner about the best tactic to take. I believe there may have been some alchemy and/or calculus and most definitely some quantum physics involved. I started to get worried.  Then she broke the news to me: “We probably can’t get you to where you want to be in one session.  We’ll need to highlight the crap out of your hair to get the red out and we’ll colour the rest with a bit of brown.  Then the next time you come in we can try to get the rest of the way.”  Part of the uncertainty was caused by the fact that I’d had the red done at another salon7, so they didn’t know what product had been used and apparently different product lines act differently together8.   Also, since it’s “corrective colour”9, it’s going to take longer and cost more than usual.  She was very apologetic and kept saying “It won’t take this long or cost this much the next time!  I promise!” but I knew that this was my own doing.

So, we spent the next TWO HOURS applying bleach and colour to my hair, using more foils than any hairdo in the history of hairdos.

The most foils ever

My foils were also stacked perfectly. I think my stylist may be a bit OCD.

Also, two hours gave her enough time to convince me that she should have creative license to give me a new style10.  I said that as long as my hair wasn’t shorter than shoulder length, I was willing to trust her.

After the colouring was all done, all the stylists agreed that Emily is a miracle worker, because there wasn’t even a trace of red left in my hair.  Here are the befores and after:

This is what it looked like when it was first dyed red.


This is what it looked like after a few weeks (since bright red fades quickly) and it is what I looked like when I went into the salon yesterday.


And this is what I looked like after Emily did her magic.

And so I’m a blonde again!

Also, I promised Emily that I’d pimp her on my blog.  I didn’t receive anything in exchange for said pimpage11, but she did such a good job and so I’m very happy to recommend her.  Emily at Image West on Broadway near MacDonald.  If you are looking for a stylist – giver her a call!

  1. something about her insurance only covering Ontario rehab. I didn’t understand it, but this is what I was told []
  2. especially since, at the time, the atrocious customer service of the furniture place where I’d got my bedroom set (which I haven’t yet blogged about, but will) was still fresh []
  3. Doesn’t going to a different salon totally make you feel like you are cheating on your stylist? []
  4. When I was complaining about being too young to have grey hairs, Emily told me that most people go grey a lot younger than we think – she said when she was in hair styling school at 19, all the other 19 and 20 years old confessed that they had grey hair already! Everyone just dyes their hair to cover it up! []
  5. Yes, I do realize that all this is very shallow. This posting is tagged with “rampant narcissism” for a reason []
  6. And yes, I realize that I’m telling the whole world here that I’m greying. But I’m sure my six readers can keep this secret, right guys? []
  7. that’ll teach me to cheat on my stylist! []
  8. e.g., if you are trying to “lift” the colour from product line B using product line A, it will turn out differently than if you “lift” the colour from product line B using product line B []
  9. i.e., fixing the mess I’ve made []
  10. she also threatened that she was going to make me sign a contract to never, ever dye my hair Canada flag red again, because it’s just too much of a pain to deal with later. I told her I wouldn’t dye it red again unless Vancouver hosts another Olympics []
  11. Seriously, this wasn’t a cheap hair makeover and I paid for the whole thing! Which, given my notorious cheapness, says a lot! []

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