Pink Ombré Kool-Aid Hair Dye

by Ashley Weeks Cart

This is the first of a two part FUN WITH KOOL-AID series. Because this past weekend, I did indeed have fun with Kool-Aid. For dying purposes. Because that stuff is far too creepy to ever allow into my digestive system. It can dye hair and wool, y’all. Clearly not meant for the estomago.

Up first? Pink Ombré Kool-Aid Hair Dye. Because I’ve been having a field day with my hair of late.

This weekend, my mother commented on the rather dire state of affairs that is my hair. My roots are down to my ears and I have split ends to rival a wheat field. I’m also loosing my hair in clumps thanks to being 5+ months post-partum. This is how I handled the situation when Sunny was a baby. I’m clearly due for a trip to the beauty salon, but thought I’d have some fun with my hair color before it hits the chopping block.

Thus, an experiment in Kool-Aid hair dye (it’s 1998 up in here!) and the new dip dye slash ombre trend.

It’s a really easy, albeit very messy and stain-hazardous project. Here’s what you’ll need and some tips!

Kool-Aid Packets UNSWEETENED! (I used two pink lemonade and two fruit punch packets to attain this pink hue)
Disposable stir stick (I used a Popsicle stick)
Plastic wrap
Rubber gloves (if you don’t want your skin dyed in the process)
A shirt that you don’t mind staining the intended hair color

1. Dump the Kool-Aid into a bowl and combine with conditioner. Use only small amounts to start as you’ll be surprised by how watery the conditioner becomes when mixed with the Kool-Aid. You don’t want the mixture too liquidy or it will run everywhere and make an even bigger mess. Be sure to mix until the Kool-Aid is fully dissolved. The consistency should be thick and gloopy (yes, that’s a word) and relatively easy to spread on your hair without lots of runny, bright red mess.

BE WARNED! The stuff does stain! Make sure that you are clothed and surrounded by things that can get messy!

2. Once you have your mixture, slap on some plastic gloves to protect your skin and apply to the hair that you would like colored. I did just the bottom 2-3 inches of my hair.

3. Once applied, wrap in plastic wrap to protect the color and your house. Pin back or tie back so that you can leave the dye on for at least 2-3 hours (if you want a really deep, rich color, I would recommend up to 8 or more hours before rinsing!)

4. When you’re ready to rinse, hop in the shower and be prepared for a bloody mess. It looked like I had staged quite the crime seen as I rinsed out the Kool-Aid. I washed the tips with conditioner, and rinsed until the water ran clear. Then I dried it to see the result. Very subtle – just like I’d hoped. I only left it in 3 hours, so I could have gone for a deeper shade if I’d left the dye in longer.

Fun, no? And best of all, temporary and less intense on the locks than a chemical dye. Also, I can always just chop off the ends of my hair when I am done with the pink and split ends. Although, I’m kind of loving this and contemplating a more dramatic dip dye from a professional before a proper cut. What do you think I should do?

Photos: Courtesy of Ashley Weeks Cart