My Hair Journey

Photo of Ofaglasgowgirl long black hair

My hair is something I am very proud of, for years I have managed to keep it in great condition whilst using box dye and growing it from my chin in 2016 to my bum in 2020. It's a big part of me and today I'm going to talk through what my hair means to me, what I've done with it throughout the years and what my plans are now along with some of the ways in which I've managed to keep my hair in good condition and managed to grow it out.

To understand where I am today with my hair, we have to go back to the beginning. 

Growing up my gran took really good care of my hair, by the time I was 6 it was halfway down my back and growing. I loved all the hair styles she would do on me and everyone would complement me on it from peers to adults and that made me feel proud. When I was first born I had a full head of jet black hair, my gran describes it as I was born with a pixi cut because there was so much of it but it started to lighten up as the months went on and by the time I was one, I was blonde. In the winter I was an ash blonde, a little darker with some beige blonde tones and in the summer, I would go to almost fully beige blonde with lighter natural highlights and this was the case until i started to do my hair in my teens.

When I was just about to go into first year in high school my mum took me to the hairdresser, telling me I needed a "big girl" hair cut since my hair was down to the back of my thighs by this point and I LOVED my hair, I was very proud of it, carrying on the care my gran started, but I didn't get much of a choice in the matter of getting it cut as my mum was dead set on it being cut, I was manipulated heavily by being told that I would get money and a new bed which I had been wanting for months so I agreed on the terms that it wouldn't get cut short.

Although my mum agreed to the terms of my hair not being cut short, when we got to the hairdressers my mum talked with the hairdresser after she asked me what I wanted. I could hear her asking my mum if she was sure to which she said yes and that's when the process started. My hair was washed and as I sat in the chair looking down at a magazine, I heard the scissors, so I looked, and I was HORRIFIED. The hair was cut and whilst it was being chopped off, I cried, I cried the whole time because it was being cut up to my chin, in a bob style. I HATED it, loathed it and I never forgave my mum for that. 

So, because I hated it, I bought a deep red hair dye behind my mums back and one day when she was at the shops, I went into the bathroom and I transformed from a blonde to a red head. It was anything to make me like my hair a little more, my mum didn't freak out like I thought she would, probably because she was having a good day and had been taking her medication and from then on we came up with new ways to change my hair. 

Photo of Ofaglasgowgirl with pink hair

Photo of Ofaglasgowgirl with red hair

Photo of Ofaglasgowgirl with black hair

Photo of Ofaglasgowgirl with red hair

Photo of Ofaglasgowgirl with pink and black hair

Photo of Ofaglasgowgirl in 2011
Some photos from my teen years where I had different colours; And yes, I was very much into the Emo scene at the time haha.

In my teens I went through a lot of hair colours; Red, blue, black and blue, green, orange, black and purple, purple, black and red, black and green, turquoise, white, black and blonde, pink, black and pink and probably more colours as I never stopped. Every few months I would buy the bleaching kit from Asda or Tesco and I would lighten my hair to them put manic panic colours over it or if I was going for an all over colour, I would get a semi-permanent box dye. There wasn't ever a long period of having the same hair colour and because of the damage I was doing, my hair stayed short which looking back now, i know wasn't the right thing to do because I fried my hair within an inch of its life and had to keep getting it cut which kept the cycle going as I hated my short hair. It was never ending. 

Then when I was 18 I decided to dye my hair fully black which has been the colour of my hair most of the time since, although I did do my hair light brown when my hair was really short in 2012 and then my hair went red from there and then back to black since except for one bleaching job I done when little bear was just born because I wanted to try get back to my natural colour. So, between the age of 18 and 22 I had black hair, with a little bit if colour that I kept on the underneath of the front of my hair. It was a patch I could change without bleaching as I used to wash out colour, a way for me to keep some sort of creativity and difference. 

Photo of Ofaglasgowgirl in 2013
This was me in 2012 and you can see just how short my hair was and the colour.

When little bear was born in 2014 I was going through a lot mentally and was diagnosed with post-partum depression and separation anxiety as I didn't want to let little bear out of my sight, the thought of him going anywhere with someone other than me, even his dad, filled me with dread. It was horrible but I really tried to have some sort of normal and do things I could have control over, that's when I decided I wanted to go back to my natural hair colour so I done what I had years before, I bought the box bleach and went in on my hair, I ended up bleaching my hair 3 times and it was fried, very damaged but I managed to get it to a honey blonde, it wasn't nice now that I look back at it, but I tried going to the hairdressers to get highlights and low lights put in and although it looked nice in the salon, when I next washed my hair ally highlights turned to a burnt orange and the darker low lights were a muddy colour which made my hair look an absolute mess! So, I ended up going back to black in summer 2014 and since then I had been putting the cosmic blue box dye on my hair. 

Photo of Ofaglasgowgirl
My hair whilst I was Pregnant

Photo of Ofaglasgowgirl hair in 2014
My hair when I tried to go back to my natural after Little bear was born

Photo of Ofaglasgowgirl from 2015
My hair in 2015, fully black and at the length of my shoulders

Growing out my hair

At the end of 2015 I got my hair cut back into a long bob like I was used to doing, my hair sat just above my shoulder blades, but I was trying to grow my hair out, although it never seemed to grow. It wasn't until I went through a breakup in February 2016 that I finally started to take growing out my hair seriously. They say a woman changes her hair after a breakup or the likes and in my case that was true because I just completely wanted to achieve a new version of me. 

From there I started to research ways to grow my hair out, I was looking for a quick fix, but I soon realised that there's no quick fix, your hair will not grow 18/19 inches overnight, no matter how much we want it to. So instead I started to make up a new hair care plan, looking back to my childhood for some inspiration because my gran really did do an amazing job with keeping it in good condition as well as helping it to grow. 

Photo of Ofaglasgowgirl
Photo of Ofaglasgowgirl long black hair

Methods I used to grow out my hair

Firstly, I started to reduce the amount of heat I was using on my hair. I cut out hair dryers for two years, straightens were hardly used and I tried not to curl my hair but that one was harder to shake because I love making my hair wavy and giving myself curls but by the end of 2016 I was doing better with this one. 

I made sure that I looked into the types of products I was using on my hair, avoiding hair spray, using heat protection, using sunscreen for hair and not using sulphate shampoo and conditioner. I would use a lot of hair masks, regularly making my own with argon oil, a restoring conditioner, coconut oil and avocado. I stuck to OGX products as I found they really worked well with my hair and kept it in good condition. 

When it came to washing my hair, I use luke warm water, double shampoo and then leave conditioner in for 10 minutes before washing it out, I used it every time I washed my hair, then at the end I would use cold water to do a final rinse through. After washing my hair I don't rub my hair vigorous with a towel, instead I sort of squeeze it then use a wide tooth bamboo comb to get rid of tugs, then I use a heat protection spray as well as an oil for shine and frizz control, then I let my hair air dry.

By 2017 my hair was getting long, I could visibly see a difference which made me so happy, I couldn't believe that I managed to grow my hair so long in such a short amount of time. Safe to say I was proud. I kept haircuts to once a year and by 2018 my hair was officially the longest it had been in 16 years so I decided to maintain the length rather than keep going but by the start of 2019 I wanted to keep growing it longer, I stopped trimming it myself but still kept my once a year haircut, looking back I wish I kept up with haircuts as it would have meant my hair looked a lot healthier, it was healthy looking, but haircuts would have helped more. 

And that brings me to present day. 

I still take good care of my hair, using hardly any heat, trimming it, hair masks and not putting a lot of stress on it with bobbles or pulling at it. But my hair was still black and after having it the same colour for so long, I decided that it was time to change up my hair and go Brunette. I just really wanted away from black, it's served its purpose for me but I'm ready to have a new look, to try a new colour and have the freedom to change it a little easier as getting away from 6 years of black/blue box dye is a task. 

I started off by researching as much as I could, I spent months looking into the process but at the end of June I took it more seriously. I spent 5 days, day and night consuming as much content as possible to make sure I do it right this time, no more box dye, no more box bleach. I went through the process, made sure that I followed all the tips I was given. The lightening process went well, a lot better than I imagined and my hair wasn't ruined thankfully. But, when it came to putting the brown hair dye in, it turned my hair black again! I used the Wella Professionals Koleston Perfect Permanent Hair Colour 44/0 Medium Brown Intensive, safe to say I won't be using that again! 

Luckily as I have been washing my hair it has been washing out and showing more of a brown tinge but it's still not as light as I would like because it looks pretty dark, hopefully when I go to the hair dressers I can see if there's anything they can do to help, I'm planning on getting it cut on the 16th August as I fancy a new style plus I want all the dead ends cut off, that's when I'll be finding out if I can get the brown I'm looking for. I won't be going short again as it’s taken me ages to finally be in love with my hair after the decision of going short was taken away from me when I was younger, but I am going to get a good bit cut off. Once my hair has been cut, I'll update with a picture to show the colour my hair has went, although it doesn't look much different to the black. 

And that's my hair journey, it's been a roller coaster over the years and even though my hair isn't the brown I wanted right now, I am hopeful that by the end of the year I will finally be a full brunette.  

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  1. Thanks for sharing, our hair goes on a journey with us, I have never dyed mine, but had some questionable hair cuts and style, I'm not quite happy with mine as it's quite thin on the top, but I'm getting there :)

    Nic | Nic's Adventures & Bakes

  2. Wow you have been through a lot, but your hair looks so good! I've been in my own little journey for maybe 5 years now. I've been natural since 6th grade, but I decided to stop using heat on my head because I wanted really nice curls. I didn't have a curl pattern or anything. I finally have a curl pattern, but I need to work on making it grown.


  3. Sounds like you finally found a good routine for good haircare and you are doing great! I’ve would’ve told you the same thing: no heat, luke warm water, heat protectant, etc. Yay! As far as the brown hair dye, I’ve worked with Wella in one of the salons that I worked in and we used 44/0 for people with heavily grey hair. It is very intense concentrated color. I think that could be part of the reason why it turned black again. A regular 4/0 probably would’ve done the job. But it’s all a learning process! :) xx