She said she wanted blue hair

What do you say when your five-year-old asks if she can dye her hair?
Clara’s been posing the question for 6 months.

She saw a girl at the swimming pool this summer with blue tips, and thought it was the most beautiful thing she’d ever seen.
Mom, can I dye my hair blue?….Turquoise blue, like the ocean?

My first thought was, I think I’m supposed to say no?
To my five-year-old.

And then I thought, Why?
It’s just hair. And it’s totally fun.
And it’s totally damaged from swimming anyway.
So let’s emphasize the summer-swim-shade and then cut it off when she’s sick of it?


So we did it!
And I love how it turned out!
Okay, we both love how it turned out.

Clara the five-year-old, going on fifteen.
Actually, these pics were taken a few weeks before her birthday, so in other colorful news…CLARA IS SIX! If you’ve followed along over the years, it’s crazy to think of her going from tiny chubby cheeks, to not talking, to talking, to blue hair.

In all honesty, I didn’t really know what I was doing with the hair dye, but it was pretty easy and took about a 1/2 hour.
At first we were going to try the koolaid method, but people quickly told me how badly it dries out your hair. So I went to the beauty supply store and asked for their input. She recommended a few brands, and I picked up this, and (for any graphic design nerds out there) loved that the color was Cyan. CMYK baby.

The beauty store lady said the color was semi-permanent and would fade with each wash. But that on really blonde hair, the color would probably never fully come out…which I was fine with. I figured at some point, we’d give her a cute little bob cut. Of course I put the dye a liiiiiittle higher up than intended, so we’ll see when that happens.

Here’s how we did the dye:
I draped an old towel around her and I wore gloves. Then I started at the bottom of her hair and smooshed it around on her hair, applying it thoroughly at the bottom (the dye was creamy like conditioner). Then I moved up her hair till I got mid-way, applying a little lighter. And then I stroked a few bits of dye higher up with my hand. I wish I had blended it a little bit better…maybe left more blonde areas in the mix. But overall it worked. Then we washed it out in the tub (and washed a nice vat of blue water down the drain).
So far (we took these pics a month ago) her hair has faded a bit. But we’ve only washed it a few times, so it’s still pretty blue!

Here’s the Before and After:

Of course it helps when the Before hair hasn’t been brushed for a day, and the After hair is blown out and flat-ironed.
After pics always have the advantage.

Our favorite way to style it, is curled.
And it goes great with a simple skirt, out of my new fabric collection called Day Trip!…which I haven’t even shared on the blog yet, but I will.

And the curls are even better after too much twirling, too much jumping, and too much photo-shooting.

The turquoise color makes me think of a few things….
Like blue ombre cakes and quilts.

In fact, just google “blue ombre” and you’ll be swimming down a cyan rabbit hole of the most amazing hair you’ve ever seen.
Why didn’t I do that before I just winged it (wunged it?) and tried it?

And how about these two stunning quilts?? Both by Nydia Kehnle.
The Tessellation Quilt I spotted on V and Co.

And speaking of Vanessa….dude, her ombre fabric now comes with metallic dots!!  It’s so amazing. If you follow her, I’m sure you’ve been ooohing and ahhhing at every photo.

Aaaannd, that turquoise color just happens to be the color of the new shop. Well, the shop isn’t new, but we gave it a facelift!  The shop platform is now through Shopify, so whenever you log on you can access old purchases, etc. Yay!
Check out the new look.

For Clara’s big #6 birthday, we had a simple party after school, which is my favorite.  She invited over a few friends from school and church. We let them color pictures on the table, they made jewelry, played with dolls, ate some treats, and sang to the birthday girl.

And I decorated the drop-down ceiling with a cheap metallic table skirt! Haah. It’s my new favorite trick.

Happy birthday to our Clara girl. She is full of spunk and personality.
And always has a smile on her face.
We love you little lady!

  1. 1) Janet

    So timely! My son has been begging for this color blue hair for over a year now (just turned 7), so I promised we could do it for the summer after school gets out. I’m so grateful you did the work of talking to someone so I could just copy your brand, color, and technique, hah! Maybe I’ll even add a tiny streak in my own hair 🙂

    • 2) Dana

      So perfect! And fun that your son wants to do it. Send me a pic this summer if you do it!

  2. 3) Bdaiss

    Yay for blue hair!! My kids both love having a splash of color added to their hair. And the semi-permanent make it super easy and fun. My daughter has been asking for purple for a couple months now. Thanks for the reminder to get on it! (We’ve been…over scheduled a bit.)

    • 4) Dana

      oooo. Purple sounds lovely. Yay! And yes, I understand the over scheduling 🙂

      • 5) yumna

        hi dana. plz add videos of how to cut a perfect draft for a 6 and 4 year old girls. i want to have a draft to cut fabric , i am very new to sewing, love to sew but when ever i sew.. my kids start fighting and i have to leave the sewing for them… i wish i could be like u.. peeeeeeeeeeeerfect in sewing

  3. 6) Emily

    The blue looks great in her hair!
    I think it’s great that you let her try something new.

  4. 7) Natasha

    Maybe you could die the rest of her hair blue ………..or purple

  5. 8) Dianne Robertson

    Love the hair and the Smile! Thank God for modern day moms!

  6. 9) Kathy

    The great thing about hair is it grows. You made her happy, and it looks cute. Even if it never totally fades, by the time youre ready to cut it off, her hair will be longer anyway.

  7. 10) Yan

    Love her skirt! Which pattern is it?

  8. 12) Mimi

    This tickled me! My kids are both adults now but they both went through the fun-colored hair phase ( middle and high school for them, though). So many people got bent out of shape about it, but why? It is only hair and will grow out soon enough, even with semi-permant colors. We only had one blip on our fun-colors trip and I will share that with you to save others the experience. My children are (or were, in one case) natural platinum blondes. My daughter dip-dyed her hair royal purple. It looked amazing, but after a few weeks it faded to…grey. Not the color she wanted. We tried color remover; worse grey:-(
    It took a professional to turn her hair back to a pretty color ( and then she moved on to other bright colors..
    It was a lot of fun. They loved it, I loved it, their dad just shook his head, but, hey, it is only hair

    • 13) Dana

      hahaha. Yes! Love your perspective! And funny that “gray” is now in too 🙂 So I guess we’ll be good all around! Thanks for sharing Mimi.

  9. 14) Samantha

    Had the same reaction when my 5 year old asked for purple!! I felt like I was supposed to say no – but all I kept thinking was it’s just hair! Clara’s turned out awesome and so did my daughter’s and now all her friends ask their moms for color!!!

  10. 15) Kristie

    My kids asked when they were 3 and 5. Being a hairdresser, I totally can take care of it! If anyone doesn’t want to do semi-permanent color, Joico makes a colored gel called Spiker that comes in different colors. 🙂

  11. 16) treen

    Oh, my goodness, Clara is a MERMAID!!!!

  12. 17) Amy

    My 13 (almost 14) year old daughter has been asking to dye the tips of her blonde hair blue too! And we’re planning on cutting a few inches off her hair next summer, so I’m trying to convince my husband that it isn’t the end of the world to let her do it now! I’m going to check out that hair dye. I like the idea of semi-permanent!

  13. 18) Mikea

    Happy belated birthday Clara! You are such a big girl now and I love your colored hair!
    Dana! She looks identical to her dad to me. Copy + paste! I love that you said yes to her. Kids with fun colored tips/ highlights always make me smile. She is gorgeous.

  14. 19) CrystalB

    I so wish I could dye my hair. My hair is practically black and refuses dye. I’ve tried getting it bleached and colored, but the time it takes to lighten (like eight weeks) and the time it takes to upkeep the dye (every two weeks) isn’t worth it to me. Going with a traditional bleach method destroys my hair. I love mermaid hair, but I couldn’t commit to the upkeep. It’s so cute though. I love when I see little kids with bright colors. Like, if you can’t do it when you are a kid- when?

  15. 20) Crystal

    Her hair looks amazing! My four year old son has albinism so his hair actually is white and it’s quite striking. People sometimes stop us and ask us if we bleach his hair, ha ha! But someday if he ever wants to dye his hair, I think it would be fun. My older son has black hair so it would be a lot harder to dye. I think it’s great that you let Clara dye her hair!

  16. 21) Abby

    I’ve wanted pink hair for a long time and finally mentioned it to my stylist who always has colorful hair. She noted my hesitation and suggested a wash-in shampoo color. She said it only works well with blonde hair (lighter the better) so perfect for your kids. I’ve used it lots – it gets more intense with multiple washes (about as dramatic as your daughters but no more) and washes out entirely after 3-4 washes. It’s called Viral and can be purchased at the salon or on Amazon. You might want to try it to extend the dye, try a different color, or for anyone else who wants to colorful temporarily.

    • 22) Dana

      Oh my gosh this is fantastic! Thanks for sharing! I’m totally going to try it out 🙂

      • 23) Deni

        There is also a company called Overtone which makes pigment conditioner. They have from pastel to extreme colors. But, since it is conditioner, it helps keep your hair soft.

  17. 24)

    You must be the coolest mom on your block!! Blue hair for such a little girl is so awesome. Your daughter is having her creativity nurtured in the best way. I used to complain to my husband the my little boys got horrible haircuts. He would say, “it’s hair…it will grow back. ” And of course, it always did. It good to help her learn to let major ideas simmer for awhile before implementing them. (Of course, letting you get comfortable with it is a bonus.)

  18. 25) Megan

    Oh I love this post so much! Her hair looks great and good on you for letting her go blue! And I love the party ideas you had, must file that away for when my 3.5 year old is a really big girl, not just a big girl lol

  19. 26) Lisa

    Love, the hair, especially with the curls. I’m so glad you mentioned how much she’s grown because I was thinking the same thing. I couldn’t believe the young lady in the photos; gone are the chubby toddler cheeks and pudgy hands, wow!

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