I've always been one to experiment with my hair in a DIY kinda way. I've always loved changing up my hair, and since I was about 15, I've change my hairstyle at least once a year. I can be very impulsive, and I really enjoy the thrill of trying new things. But mostly, it makes me feel like a different person — it's such a dramatic way to reinvent yourself and change up your style.
When I was younger, I was never allowed to dye my hair, so I just experimented with different haircuts. For the longest time I took pride in having super-long hair. To me, it was a way to be feminine, and I loved brushing it and taking care of it. I could do so many things to it: curling it, straightening it, all the different kinds of braids, a huge variety of up dos. I loved it all.
It was also quite popular in my high school to have very long hair, as not many girls could grow it that long, so it gave me confidence and also made me feel like I was straight out of a Disney movie, which I was into feeling like at the time.
I had long hair for a couple of years, but one day, I just suddenly thought to myself, I don't need long hair to be beautiful or to feel feminine, and I decided to get it cut short by my uncle, a hairdresser. It was about the same length as my brother's, and I felt so confident and fierce knowing that I could still be feminine and that I defined what that meant for myself.
This was actually quite a high-maintenance style, which I didn't expect. I had to make sure I didn't have weird bed head and bits sticking out in the morning, and then I kind of also missed being able to do lots of things with my hair, so I decided to grow it out.
While growing it out, I had this idea one night, right before I fell asleep, that it would be cool to have asymmetrical hair. I have no idea where I got this idea from, but soon after, I went to a hairdresser and got them to cut my hair so that it was a bob, but one side was shorter and it slowly curved down to a longer style with bangs.
This is probably my least favorite hairstyle I've ever had because, in retrospect, it looks a lot like a bowl cut or like I was wearing a helmet made out of hair.
I ended up growing my hair out past my shoulders and getting it evened back out to one length. I was also in the process of growing out my fringe.
At this, point I was very determined to grow my hair back to where it was before I ever cut it short in the first place. However, that didn't ever end up happening.
Freshly turned 18, I decided to experiment with bleaching, so I bleached a streak of my hair and dyed it blue, which actually turned out green because I hadn't lightened it enough.
I ended up really liking the green, so I kept it that way for a while. I also decided, at 2 a.m., that it would be cool to have bangs again, so I chopped away with a pair of scissors and gave myself a really short fringe.
I let my hair grow out again, which was pretty boring, so I started to consider going blonde. I'd seen quite a few pictures of blonde Asian girls on Tumblr, and a dream began to swell in my heart: to join the blonde Asian club.
Around the same time, my boyfriend was also considering blonde for himself, so one afternoon, I bleached his hair blonde and it went really well. Then, we thought we could do mine, too. The next day, he came over and we bleached my black hair.
The result of the first bleach wasn't pleasant at all. My hair was a gross, fluorescent greenish-yellow. We bleached it two more times that day (yikes!) and then decided to put purple dye in it, which went a weird grayish-lavender color.
After that, I decided to leave it as it was. I'd always wanted to have some kind of funky-colored hair when I was little.
After a few washes, it started to turn green-blue which I really liked, and I left it that way for a few months. I loved looking in the mirror and seeing my hair is such a strange and magical color. All my childhood dreams of funky colored hair had been realized!
It took a long time for the purple dye to completely wash out, though, and I was eventually left with blonde that had a tinge of green in it.
I tried lots of things to get the green out, and eventually putting ketchup in my hair worked! So I left it blonde for a while before deciding what to do next.
The final phase of my colored hair was pink. I saw photos of Fernanda Ly and was immediately convinced that pastel pink was for me.
I really enjoyed having pink hair, but after a while, my regrowth started to bother me, and I realized that it was beyond the point of "cool regrowth" and something had to be done.
However, I didn't want to go through the hassle of bleaching my roots again, and I decided I'd gotten quite sick of dyeing my hair to get it to stay pastel pink.
It was a really hot day. I'd recently watched Leon: The Professional, and I had just gotten out of the shower. In the heat of the moment, I decided I wanted a chin-length bob like Mathilda. I grabbed scissors, looked up photos of Kiko Mizuhara, and started chopping away.
I was having a great time until it became apparent to me that I had cut my hair so unevenly that it looked like a staircase. I started to freak out. I texted my friend Joe, who's currently a trainee hairdresser, explaining the situation.
His response: "You need to stop NOW!"
I rung my mum in a frenzy and explained in a hasty manner that I'd started cutting my hair and she just so happened to be with a friend who was an ex-hairdresser, so Mum came home and her friend came to the rescue and fixed it up for me.
I was so grateful, and it was quite a thrilling night to say the least. Mum's friend didn't actually have the right tools to cut my hair, so she said I should get it cut by a pro ASAP.
In the next couple of days, Mum's friend came over and helped me to dye it back to black. She started by dyeing it bright orange, which looked absolutely crazy. I felt like Lee-Loo from The Fifth Element.
Next, she put in the black dye, and it was the strangest thing to see myself with black hair again.
Joe came over and fixed up my cut. I felt like it was the end of an era — and a little like I was a new person again. The black bob felt like a wig to me, and it took a couple of weeks to get used to it.
My hair is currently a one length bob. Possibly my most boring haircut ever, but I love it. In fact, I think it's my all-time favorite hairstyle, and I intend on keeping it like that for a while.
But then again, I think I also said that about every other haircut I've had. Who knows what I'll think of next!
- How many times have you changed your haircut and color in the last few years?
- What was your most regrettable style or shade?