Friday, January 16, 2015

Leopard Print Hair

My daughter recently cut her long hair very short, with a shaved side. Ever since then, she's been asking for a fun design on the shaved portion of her hair. We finally did it, so I thought I'd share our steps to this awesome look.

I'll make a disclaimer: I am NOT a professional hair dresser! I have NO formal training! So these steps are just an outline of what I did to achieve this look. They are in no way advice of a professional. That being said, I did read and follow the directions on all the products I used. Be sure to wear something you don't mind getting stained. Drips happen!

We started out with regular dark brown hair. I sectioned off and pinned the hair I didn't want bleached. I also added a thin layer of petroleum jelly to the parted hairline on the side we wanted to remain brown. That way it blocked the hair from bleach in case I was sloppy (turned out I wasn't, but just in case).

Next, I mixed the bleach in a plastic bowl and pained it carefully onto the hair. The directions said NOT to get it on the scalp, but I did. I tried not to, but it happened. It was hard with really short hair not to get it on the scalp. We used Raw White-Out 40 volume bleach kit from Sally Beauty Supply. We don't have a dome dryer, so we used a hand-held hair dryer on hot heat, low blowing to heat the hair and get it all bleachy good. It got light almost immediately. After about 20 minutes, we got tired of using the blow dryer, so we turned it off and decided to see if that worked. It did. Total time was 40 minutes.

After rinsing the bleach out, we applied the toner from the kit and left it for 15 minutes.  More of the brassiness seemed to come out.

After rinsing the toner, I gently dried the hair. We waited about half an hour before the next step. I wanted to make sure the hair was completely dry (and finish my TV program).

Next, I used L'Oreal Feria #21 Bright Black to make the spot outlines. I mixed the color in a plastic bowl instead of the bottle so I could use the unmixed portion for future applications. Just make sure to mix equal amounts. I also mixed in the little oil packet that came with it. It smelled SO good. (I planned on using Manic Panic Black for this, but they were out!) To make the design, I used a cotton swab. At first, I used it with all the cotton on it, but it soon became overly fluffy and made the spot larger than I wanted. I threw that swab away and got a new one that I'd pulled most of the cotton off of. So basically a little stick. I dipped it in the color, then dabbed it over the hair in the pattern I wanted.  

Be sure to vary the direction and size of your spots, and also add little dots of just black in between where there are "holes." You will notice there will be areas where a whole spot wont fit, but a dot will. 

For the filling of the spots, we mixed Manic Panic Hot Hot Pink and Manic Panic Cotton Candy. It made a really cool color we liked. I used a new cotton swab for application. You DO NOT have to rinse out the black dye before putting on the pink! You just have to be careful to dab the pink on and not smear the black. Slow and steady.

We left the color on for about 30 minutes. And watched more TV.

Time to rinse! As we rinsed, the bleached hair took on a silvery hue where the black trickled through it. It looked good, but I wasn't happy with that. After a few shampoos, the silvery color was gone, as well as the color staining on the scalp. I need to figure out how to stop that from happening next time.

All said and done, it took about 2.5 hours. So, be sure to leave enough time, then prepare for the compliments to roll in! My daughter has gotten a lot of attention for her new style - from little kids to really old ladies! I've even had a few requests from people to do theirs, but I'll leave that to the pros...

Here is how it looks now, 2 weeks later:

Here is a list again of the products I used:
Raw White-Out 40 volume bleach kit
L'Oreal Feria #21 Bright Black
Manic Panic Hot Hot Pink
Manic Panic Cotton Candy
Plastic Hair Dye mixing bowl and brush
Cotton swabs

I hope you are inspired to do something fun with your hair! It's a great form of self expression that can easily be changed, covered, repeated, etc.

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