Dyeing Hair Blue

Hair dyeing
Photo: Elnur/Shutterstock
Q: Hi. I'm Daniel, and I'm 22 years old. I've never really done anything outlandish with my appearance. Before I get too old to do youthful things, I was thinking of taking a bold risk and dyeing my hair blue! My hair is dark brown, so would it have to be bleached to get a moderately light blue color?
How long would the blue dye remain? Could this damage my hair follicles? Is this too risky? Would this unnatural color affect my chances of getting a job? I'm really shy, but I also really want to do this so long as it wouldn't interfere with getting a job. Thanks for all the help!

A: Well, let me say, "Congratulations" on having the courage to take a bold stance and expressing yourself. Now that I have said that; I applaud you for being practical and asking about this before simply jumping into an extreme hair color change.
In order to get a light blue color to show up using traditional hair color formulas you would need to significantly lighten your dark brown hair. This would involve a permanent color change since you would be dispersing your hair's natural color and replacing it with the lighter blue color. This color would remain until it grows out and is cut away, although as it ages the hair color may fade significantly.
Done properly, following instructions carefully and taking the proper precautions, performing this color change would be safe to your follicles and offer no health risks. You must be certain to read all the instructions for the products you choose carefully though and follow them exactly.
As for the chance that having blue hair would interfere with your ability to get a job, that's likely to depend on the type of job you want and the type of company or establishment for whom you want to work. You probably won't see many computer technicians at IBM or bank tellers with light blue hair, but you could probably walk into some graphic arts studios for an interview and have no one give you a second glance.
What I recommend, if you really want to try something bold and daring with your hair, is that you visit your local beauty supply store and look for temporary hair color products. There are a wide range of colored hair sprays, mousses and gels in an array of colors - even metallic - that are opaque when applied so that they are visible even on black hair, and last only until your next shampoo.
You may not find the exact color you have in mind, but these products will allow you to be outlandish with your hair without a major commitment. This means that you can be as wild as you want on your time, and still present traditional appearance to a potential employer. As an added bonus, you can change your color as often as you change your mind. Have fun!
See also:
Hair coloring
Hair color change
Temporary hair color for fun