Reading the writeups above, you might get the impression, as I did, that their authors have the sort of hair that, when a breeze hits it, everything goes slow motion. Glossy pink or puple manes that wave where they should wave and straighten where they should straighten. These are clearly people whose hair doesn't frizz in the rain, whose ponytails don't have persistent and inexplicable lumps, whose ends are not split, whose roots are not showing. If their hair betrayed them on a regular basis, would they give it such doting attention? Surely not.

Sadly, we are not all gifted with beautiful, obedient hair. There is a second class of hair-growers, those of us whose hair never does as it's told and view it as a plaything at best, a target for abuse at worst.

We've learned the hard way that no amount of conditioning or dyeing will make our hair look good. Whatever the ads promise, we'll somehow screw it up or our follicles will somehow reject it. That's why the good people at Phoenix Brands LLC have given us Rit dye. Rit is a cheap alternative to fancy-pants stuff like Manic Panic. It fades quickly and involves fewer steps that regular hair dye.

Of course, there are lots of good reasons people don't dye their hair with Rit. Number one is that Manic Panic is pretty easy to come by these days. Dyeing this way can cause severe burns and back cramps, and is almost guaranteed to damage your hair. You won't be able to dye your roots and it won't cover up your natural color.

So there's your warning. If you're still up for some DIY foolishness, follow me:

  1. Prepare your hair. Rit is not going to do anything to black, dark brown, or short hair. (If you have short hair, stop now and come back when your hair reaches your shoulders, at least.) For truly unnatural results, you'll need bleached hair. If you prefer to leave your hair its natural color, keep in mind that you'll only be tinting it and keep your choice of color in the warm family - red, orange, pink, or purple.
  2. Color selection is crucial here. Try to get a shade darker than the color you want and stay away from anything pastel unless your hair is white like the driven snow.
  3. You'll need a package of dye, a teapot (maybe two), and a towel. Acquire these things.
  4. Fill the teapot and put it on the stove. While you await its telltale whistle, clip your towel around your neck so it covers your shoulders. Wash out your bathroom sink if you think there might be toothpaste or other funky stuff in there.
  5. Take your kettle into the bathroom. Stop the sink and dump at least half a package of dye in there. Empty your boiling water into the sink. (If your sink is really deep, you may need two teapots. And if you need two teapots, you need a whole package of dye.)
  6. When the steam has died down enough that it's not likely to burn you, bend forward and dip your hair in. Start slow and dip your hair in further, stopping when your head feels uncomfortably warm. You don't want to boil your scalp (much).
  7. Move your head as you dye, trying to bend back and forth so that the hairs on the left and right can get deeper into the water. If you can, turn around and bend backwards over the sink to get the hairs at the back of your head.
  8. Keep your head in until the water is lukewarm, then pull your head out and gently pat dry.
  9. As much as possible, avoid shampooing or wearing white.

There you have it! An archaic and dangerous way of doing something that could be done safely and easily for a few dollars more. Enjoy!

Ok, really now, don't do this. I used to do it in high school and it is really possible, but I did a lot of stupid shit in high school that I wouldn't encourage others to emulate.