Thursday, August 9, 2012

Going Blue

A few weeks ago my daughter, Zoe, asked if she could dye her hair blue.  She wanted to try something different, something distinctive, something stylish. 

As you might imagine, this resulted in much discussion between her mother and father.  Working to her benefit was the fact that she actually asked permission, as opposed to attempting it on her own.  The idea of blue hair seems consistent with her passion for fashion.  She spends a lot of time looking at designs, fabrics and colors.  She is taking a summer school class in fashion design at New York's Fashion Institute of Technology.  

Like many teenagers, Zoe is trying to discover her identity.  She will be a junior in a prestigious private school, which is very competitive and academically demanding.  Last year was very challenging for her, but she ended the term with a B average.  She also greatly matured and gained in confidence.

While the idea of her having blue hair didn't sit well with me, my reasons for her not to do it seemed trivial.  What would other parents think?  Would she be accepted among her peers?  And I found out that there is no school regulation against it.  So, in the end, we agreed to go along provided that we have it done by a professional.

I am not sure that Zoe had any idea of how complicated and time consuming the dye job would be.  Swaths of her hair were wrapped in foil. 
Bleach was used to remove her natural black hair color.  After two hours of arduous work, performed by a stylist and an assistant, her hair was all white.  She appeared to age thirty years!
Finally, her style team painted each hair with blue dye.  The whole procedure took nearly four hours. (And was very expensive!)
At first, Zoe seemed nervous and tentative about her hair.  And the reactions from her friends, while largely favorable, were mixed.  Nonetheless, she is now very pleased with the way her hair appears. The only drawback so far is that for a few days the blue dye rubbed off on her pillow. 

There are only four weeks remaining before the new school year begins.  It will be interesting to see how the blue hair plays among her classmates.  My guess is it will be will be no big deal.

Zoe is grateful we gave her the opportunity to experiment.  She also knows that her parents treated her with respect, value her opinions and are not unreasonable.  I think the parent-kid bond got a little tighter.

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