A Hairy Tale

A Hairy Tale

When we first moved to Toronto, one of the hardest things to find was a good hairdresser. As women, we develop a relationship with our hairdresser that is very personal and very trusting. Would you trust your husband to cut your hair? I doubt it. Mister is never allowed near my hair again. Oh yeah, I did something bad folks… really bad.

You see, I had just started maternity leave and my hairdresser that I had grown to love was way the hell downtown. With a baby in tow, it seemed monumental to bring the bucket seat in the car, where our daughter would, invariably, sleep. The car would wear her out for the next 35 minutes and then she would wake to see the excitement just as we got there.

I wouldn’t get my relaxing chit chat about fashion, entertainment news or gossip about the people who worked in my building. I would also be a wiggly target near scissors bouncing my baby on my lap. Most importantly, I was not at my pre-baby weight and my colleagues were across the street likely to walk by and see me not at my best. None of these were ideal for sure.

I knew no one in our neighbourhood except my neighbours and they all had downtown hairdressers. Shit. I had to do something. I had to take matters into my own hands. I headed to the drug store and – gasp – bought a box of do-it-yourself highlights. The ad made it seem simple enough. It even came with a fancy highlight comb. I’m a smart woman. I can do this.

The front and sides were tedious but doable. I looked like I had done it myself but it wasn’t embarrassing. Then my arms got tired and the back was hard with the series of mirrors I had constructed. So I asked Mister to help.

I gave him very strict instructions. That is where it went wrong. I asked him to follow instructions. We had already had a reverse BBQ incident the year before and I had long since given up asking him to help with IKEA. What was I thinking?

Moments passed and I had a false sense of security that Mister was doing as I had asked until I felt a lot of action. Instead of the slow methodical approach I had taken to work the front in pieces, it seemed Mister was employing a quick and jerky technique. When I asked how it was going I heard ‘This is my Salon. I do it my way.’ in his best impression of Perez Hilton.

imageThis was the moment I had to find a hairdresser. Stat. I was skunked beyond help. The little experiment cost me $56 in boxed hair dye, $350 to dye my hair professionally then highlight it and $85 for a cut, $15 for parking and $20 in tips to my new salon. A grand total of $526. Lesson learned.


  1. I tried the little comb applicator ONCE (and looked stripey and spotty and then had no means to pay for a professional correction). The easiest was the wash in / wash out kind. I haven’t done the boxed stuff in years though. Gee I wonder why.

    • But the wash in/out is an all over colour… Last time I went (2 years ago), I asked for ‘what I did last time.’ She said ‘what? 3 years ago?’. This incident happened when I still cared and still shaved my legs in winter. Crazy days!

  2. And this is why I am going semi-gracefully grey.

  3. Great googly-moogly – $350 to dye your hair?! Did they sprinkle it with diamonds and caviar?! Bet it looks amazing though and in a pinch you can always sell individual strands for ten bucks a pop.

    • It was $350 because they had to dye it twice to my regular colour to get rid of Mister’s highlights, then they had to highlight it properly. It was really bad! It also took more than 3 hours. Because… I had that amount of time to spare.

  4. Margot C. Capers : March 24, 2015 at 10:08 am

    Would that be $526 Canadian? That’s a little less in US dollars, but still…wow! I sorely miss the days when I could afford to plop down over $200 to get my hair just how I wanted it. It’s Clairol root touch-up for me these days–and I also no longer have a way to set up mirrors to see the back of my head, so who knows what it looks like back there.

    I used to do home highlights, too. You’re right about how tired your arms get! I also tried having my husband do the back once and didn’t end up with a skunk stripe, but it was pretty close. I stopped him before it got too bad, because I could feel him grabbing large pieces and then slopping the dye on. He’s one of those “if a little is good, a lot must be way better” types.

    Fun post!

    • That is Canadian and includes 14% tax so it is probably $20 USD right now since our dollar has gone for a shit. Fricking Fracking! That’s another rant…
      I am so glad I am not the only misguided soul to blindly trust her husband. Thanks for making me feel just a little more normal!

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