A bit of a mea culpa may be in order here. We reported (hoped?) that unnaturally-colored dip dye was a trend that was going to be left back in 2011. The spring 2012 runways (which we saw back in February of this year) proved that colored hair had moved, as these things sometimes do, from the street to the runway. The result? The trend for neon and pastel hair, especially pink, is hanging on and we'd even argue is gaining momentum.
The famously pink-haired model Charlotte Free just landed a contract with Maybelline, which is a pretty mainstream gig for neon hair. Even Joan Rivers went pink for a bit (see above). And Lauren Conrad is a serial pink dyer--she can't lay off the neon. She dip-dyed her ponytail fuchsia a few weeks ago, and let's not forget the internet frenzy she caused when she did pink, blue and lavender streaks last year. Coco Rocha made her waves Schiaparelli shocking pink for the Met Gala. So it's a thing, and that's ok.
Want to partake? We talked to a gaggle of experts to get their advice for how to get bright hair, how to keep it, and how to get rid of it (we know from experience that having pink hair gets tiresome. And hard to coordinate with outfits.) At the end we've given you a lovely gallery of bright-hued ladies to give you some inspiration. Click through for the expert tidbits and to see everyone from Lady Gaga sporting a rainbow cascade to Willow Smith with a pink buzzcut.
WHY DYE? Hair colorist Tracey Cunningham, who is the ombré queen of LA (she's done Drew Barrymore and Jessica Biel) probably summed it up best: "We're all so f*ucking bored." Amen. New York-based celeb hair colorist Rita Hazan acknowledges that this is definitely a phenomenon; she's been seeing more requests for unnatural hair color. "Women are taking risks," she said. Frederic Fekkai reports that more women are doing it for events or a short stint. Whatever your motives, the process is still the same.
HOW? If you want pink (or any light pastel) you need to be blonde first. This is the tricky part. Cunningham recommended getting the bleach part done by a professional, but if you're a light brown you can DIY highlight it yourself. Hazan said, "Get a highlight kit and pull the pieces you want to color then highlight those." After that, you wash, dry, then apply color. Let the color sit for about 30 minutes, and then rinse. Eek! Pink hair! (Manic Panic, Special Effects, Jerome Russell, and Fudge Paintbox Creative Conditioning Colour are a few choices, and none cost more than $15.) Hazan (who thinks Katy Perry's "purple velvet" is the best of the colorful bunch) told us not to worry about trying to match colors to your skin tone--just go for it.
KEEP IT Easter egg hair will fade quickly because the color is just a dye. It won't damage your hair, but the bleaching process can, so definitely get professional help if you hair is really dark. Cunningham said the more you wash the faster the color will fade, so go for the 2-3 day bedhead look. You can also try Rita Hazan Clear Gloss, and Cunningham recommends Pureology shampoo and conditioners, or any sulfate-free brand (we like L'Oreal's EverSleek Reparative Smoothing Shampoo, which you can grab at any drugstore.)
LOSE IT Eventually you will wake up and say, "Really? I dyed my hair lavender? WTF was I thinking?" Just wash frequently with a cleansing shampoo and it will fade pretty quickly. Until you're ready to go aqua.
Click through to see all the celebs, models and starlets who have had fun with crazy hair color over the last few weeks.