8 things I hate about getting my hair dyed

Published: November 20, 2012

Anything to do with hair can be awfully frightening but it is a whole new experience when it comes to colouring hair. ILLUSTRATION: IMAAN SHEIKH

“Aap ke baalon mein two-tone shades aa rahe hain, dye ke bohat sakht zaroorat hai”

(Your hair has two-toned shades in it. It is absolutely necessary for you to dye your hair.)

There is a constant struggle between the know-it-all salon ladies and ignorant customers. Although we try to fight temptation and stay as far away as possible from these overly welcoming personas, we eventually succumb to their persuasive invitations.

Anything to do with hair can be awfully frightening but it is a whole new experience when it comes to colouring hair. Treat it like a canvas and throw different shades on it, or treat it like royalty and pamper it, there is no guarantee; at the end it all comes down to chance.

Below are eight (overly exaggerated) things I hate about getting my hair dyed!

1. Deciding what colour

Seriously, you spend days flicking through magazines, endless hours discussing it at the dinner table, even Googling images during work hours, quarreling with your close friends and sacrificing your sleep. As monotonous as it sounds, you are never lucky enough to find the perfect match for your hair.

2. Getting it done

The conventional belief that we share about salons being bliss is being questioned here. This lengthy process is not just limited to applying toxic chemicals to your virgin hair but to your entire face. The constant tugging and pulling of strands, the trial and test period, the water spray clouding your vision and the thought of four women on each side staring at your hair is just scary.

3. The wash

A slender silhouette massaging your hair ─ great, who has a problem with that? Just when you start enjoying this, suddenly, the water tap has a seizure. It becomes too hot or too cold. Seems like water taps in Pakistan don’t understand moderation. The same woman you mistook for being generous becomes your biggest opponent. Here, she will take every opportunity to speak to you.

“Is the water okay?”

“Is it too hot?”

“Too cold?”

I know it’s only because she cares, but asking the same question every five seconds does not change anything. Either do something about it or don’t speak!

4. Blow-dry, an oxymoron

The best part of the worst procedure. That’s right, even blow-dries can be dreadful. After six hours of sitting still, the heat of the dryer increases your blood pressure. Furthermore, if you hate your newly dyed perfect hair, the heat makes it more prominent ─ you can’t tie an over-sized bun, dig a hole and hide forever.

5. Anxious audience

All eyes on you. Either you are quick to walk away never knowing what totally random or exceedingly biased people have to say about your hair, or you bear with the flattery hoping to find one genuine comment. There will be many envious flatterers, beware! Just don’t look back!

6. The enemy

There is always that one person who is quick to judge and criticise. Of course, we are open to brutally honest opinions, but at least sugarcoat your pessimism towards my hair.

7. Guilty pleasure

The sick satisfaction that you get after having your hair coloured. It is disgustingly addictive and keeps you craving for more.

8. Aftermath

The horrid backache that you get from sitting like a decorated ornament isn’t the only side affect – in fact it is the vicious cycle of having your roots covered every once in two months. This tedious process is repeated and you have no choice but to give in.

Love it or hate it, you are in or out.

Read more by Bushra here, or follow her on Twitter @bushraparekh


Bushra Parekh

A sub-editor for the blog desk at The Express Tribune. She tweets @bushraparekh

The views expressed by the writer and the reader comments do not necessarily reflect the views and policies of The Express Tribune.

  • AK

    Can we have some useful blogs please ET ? If the author wants to rant about her hair nails and shoes, let her do that on her personal blogs, why waste space on ET ?Recommend

  • Saleha.K

    Useless read! Recommend

  • Nandita.

    I have never coloured my hair although almost all my friends have. The thought of the effect of toxic chemicals on my hair always scares me no end. Anyways, no colour can suit me more than my natural hair colour. So , Black it is !
    If you get bored with your look, you can experiment with your attire or get a new haircut. Colouring is a big NO-NO for me – no matter how safe anyone says it is.Recommend

  • F.A.

    Interesting read, too realistic! Recommend

  • Pessimist

    Why are people complaining about this blog? As far as I can remember, each blog targets a select audience. If you don’t like it, don’t read it and don’t comment on it. It’s really simple and I reccomend all people to try it :)Recommend

  • Parvez

    Aaaah !…….so thats what my wife goes through every now and then.Recommend

  • Pseudo

    This iss sooo trueeee. Hatee dyingg my hair.. Especially during PMS. it’s really like such a a BIG nooo NOOOOOO.Recommend

  • Thankful

    Thank you very much miss Parekh, as it was my, along with many other Pakistanis foremost concern and worry that what you hate about getting your hair dyed. Thank you very much for settling it down once and for all.


  • Huma

    dear Thankful…. have you ever noticed that in pakistan men dye their hair more than women…. note the extra black heads with the token white sideburns as an example… and the maulvis also due their hair/beards.. so really…. get over the first world problem syndrome!Recommend

  • Sara

    you know you could do it yourself :P that would save you from half the troubles listed here and would have prevented all of us from wasting 5 minutes of our precious life!Recommend

  • Hajra Noreen

    All i look forward is to reading the comments of such articles….very entertaining comments totally indirectly proportional to the article…… :) .!!!Recommend

  • shuja ul islam

    my goatee has two shades..what should i do..!!??Recommend

  • BlackJack

    I think the article is titled accurately – so people who do not want to read it can just avoid it. Those who read the entire piece and then slam it as not solving the Gaza crisis or global warming or malnutrition in Somalia have too much time on their hands anyway, and shouldn’t complain.Recommend

  • S

    I love you Bushra. Why are these people ranting away? Seriously!Recommend

  • AK

    So people are trying to defend this article ! Great, now I have seen it all I guess, Well all I can say is that forums like ET should be used to discuss something bigger than some chick’s issues with hair dying. While we all know that this piece has its own target auidence, but how big is that target audience? 0.1% ? I think if this continues then we will see blogs like ‘1000 things I Love about my Nail polish’, or ’50 shades of lip sticks’ bla bla. For God’s sake discuss something which is of significant importance at national or international level and leverage this forum to make a differenceRecommend

  • SA

    It is not the blogger that worries me but the people with the negative comments. What is wrong with you people. People like you prove to me that we are miles away from a place of respect, diversity and acceptance. Virtually impossible to appeal to everyones taste. And if the ridiculous statistic mentioned above (0.1%) is even correct, then so be it- and let the 0.1% people enjoy it.
    It was a pleasant change from the gory and depressing articles- lighthearted and accurate narrative! Really enjoyed it!
    To the people with the negative comments; I was taught in 2nd grade: if you have nothing nice to say, don’t say anything.

    This is just my opinion, if you can bash like that I can certainly defend. Recommend

  • Ayesha Pervez

    Ive only dyed my hair once … My hair is jet black and Im content with the shade nature blessed me with… I know some young women who dye their hair light brown and blond and it doesnt look real but rather makes them look like aunty :s Recommend

  • GhostRider

    Uncle philosopher…save it for the childrenRecommend

  • Bushra Parekh

    So..thanks for the brutally honest comments :) I appreciate it – only helps me improve! Also just thought I’d let all of you know, this was written for the 0.1% target audience if that statistic even exists, just like the title suggests. Do keep the comments rolling in & thank you for taking out the time to give this a read!!Recommend

  • ADP

    Baseless. Its great to see how people like you will LOVE to comment and be negative but never end up doing anything yourself. This article is obviously not for you – but then clearly neither is anything entertaining yea? Maybe u should stop watching movies, going out to restaurants and doing anything fun while you’re at it! Like u said, there are much more serious issue’s at the moment. Go attend to these issue’s then – Get off your computer and get on the streets and go make the change that people like you are craving and ranting about so much. By putting someone else’s work down, no matter how useless it is, it only proves the saying that barking dogs seldom bite.Recommend

  • Usman786

    I colour my hair too using the cheapest Recommend

  • Faryal

    A very interesting and simple blog, love the way Bushra has written about the “hair story” which I believe every girl has. The blog clearly mentions the pros and cons of hair maintenance and looking good and I don’t know why some people (like AK) are criticizing it. Creativity is never useless and yes there are people who would want to take a small break and read about everyday issues rather than act as UN ambassadors “online”…..it doesn’t change much anyways.

    This type of writing is fresh and I am happy tribune has brought in such a positive addition.Recommend

  • AK

    Woah !!!! My comments seem to have infiuriated a lot of friends of the writer of this masterpiece.


    First up SA
    Apparently you never learned what they tried to teach you in 2nd grade, since you are going on and on saying negative things about our criticism of this article. My advice is to give it another shot and try to learn that thing that they tried teaching u,
    and also practice what you preach.

    Next ADP
    You deserve an award my friend.. Kudos to you for comparing Movies with this little tasteless article. Thanks for assuming a lot of things about me without even knowing me or my identity, my work etc.. And thanks for stooping low and making personal attacks just to defend an article like this. you are a true friend of the author. :)

    Guys, don’t get angry, all I am saying is that this article neither entertains, nor discusses an important issue, neither it appeals to general public, just take a look at the comments above and the number of people who have actually LIKED it and you will get the idea. Recommend

  • Nandita.


    BlackJack spoke sense. Your comment was unwarranted.Recommend

  • nasir

    @ AK…. dude why are u wasting so much time commenting on a piece you don’t even like? you’ve already written two pretty long comments on what you’ve described as a “tasteless article”. Recommend

  • AK


    In case you did not notice, Most of my commmts were in response to the comments made by author’s friends. But u know what, I will disable the notification email for followup comments and stop replying now. Peace. Recommend

  • Zeeshan

    Meanwhile in Gaza…..Recommend

  • islooboy

    i am going to age with grace hair dye can give cancerRecommend

  • irum

    hahahaha… its a funny article.. guilty pleasures the best Recommend

  • Alia Rizvi

    Well done Bushra! I thought was really funny and interesting! Keep up the hard work and don’t lose your originality. For all those who don’t like it don’t read it go and read the financial times or something. Very well done and very interesting Bushra! Keep the articles rolling! XRecommend