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Carol Perkins: Going gray

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By Carol Perkins

"Why don't you let your hair go gray?" is a question I get often, and it is tempting, but I can't let go just yet. However, the process of keeping away the gray is getting more and more tedious and occurring more often. When I see the white band around my face, much like a headband I wore in the sixties, I can visualize how pale and washed out a gray-haired "me" would look, so I keep repeating the process.

Most of the time, I leave the dye job to my hairdresser, but occasionally, when I can't stand to look at myself, I'll pick out a color and do my own. Never, ever have I done so successfully.

One week when he was on vacation, and I had let the roots go too long, I found a box of "touch up" color under the sink. No telling how long it had been there, but what can go wrong with a bottle of dye?

I laid the containers inside the box in the bathroom sink in order of use and slipped on the plastic gloves. Sectioning my hair as directed, I applied the medium brown color to the roots. (On the box, the color looked just the way I wanted my hair.) After a few minutes, I combed the color throughout my hair to be sure to get the back, too. Then after ten minutes, I rinsed out the dye as directed and cleaned the stain off my forehead, ears, and all around the sink.

Even wet, it looked a little dark, and after putting the hairdryer to it, it didn't get any lighter. I was looking at a female version of Elvis in the mirror. Going out in public like this was sure to cause stares; I was embarrassed. Even a crown on my head wouldn't have diminished the fact my hair was too dark, too cheap looking, and too unflattering against my fair skin. I couldn't wait to get to my appointment and let my hairdresser work his magic. (He is never surprised at what I do when he is gone.) Guy, somewhat used to my hair colors, said, "Got it a little dark this time, didn't you?"

My mother called one day before my appointment and she hesitated at first. "You know I don't criticize you, but you might need to leave your hair to Benny (my hairdresser)." I laughed and assured her I agreed. Mothers are usually right. Mothers and husbands will reinforce what we often already know. Who else will tell you the truth?

Follow Susan and Carol-Unscripted on 99.1 the Hoss in Edmonton on Tuesdays from 10amCT to 11amCT and replay on Sundays from 4pmCT to 5pmCT. Listen to Carol's podcast at for entertaining stories and a replay of Susan and Carol-Unscripted.

This story was posted on 2019-11-27 20:02:40
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