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Dying Your Hair as a College Student

Stares. Double-takes. Phrases like “Why would you ruin your natural hair?” or “ You were prettier before” or “You’ll never be taken seriously looking like that”. Personally, I get it all the time. From family to strangers, it never ends. Dying your hair is a form of self expression. It’s an art, to be honest. 

If you dyed your hair when you were a teen, it may have seemed difficult to get past the comments after changing it for the first time. Believe me though when I tell you it gets harder once you are out of high school. As a freshman in college, I have changed my hair color at least 5 times within the first semester.

I started to wonder who else dyes their hair in college and if they get the same “concerns” as I do. So I decided to ask other college students with colored hair why they do it and what responses they get from it. Here are their answers. 

“Right now my hair is red. I like that I can change my hair to my personality and how I’m feeling in the moment. One of the worst comments I got about my hair was when I dyed it a lighter red/golden brown, and my dad said that I destroyed my hair and that I didn’t look like a true Latina anymore. I said it’s just hair and I can cut it off again and grow it back and it doesn’t make me less Latina. Because the stereotypical perception in Latina culture is long dark hair is the most beautiful and that we shouldn’t ruin that.” ~ Charity Marino FSU ‘23

“My current hair color is brown with indigo tips. I dyed my hair because I don’t like my natural hair color on me and I like how I am able to express myself with hair color. I would say the weirdest comment I got on my hair color was when my hair was completely purple, a child at a dairy queen yelled “Hey purple haired lady! Is that your real hair?!” My response was “Yes, I am an Elf. It naturally grew like this.’” ~ Rylee Ghem FSU ‘23

“Right now my hair color is black with purple blue bangs. I do it because it helps me stand out and just because it makes me feel good about myself or i need a little change! I was asked at Thanksgiving by my great uncle if it was for a bet I lost. I just told him “No, my cool roommate did it!”” ~ Alex Leblanc FSU ‘23

“My hair is ‘’Virgin Pink’ and ‘Ritual’ (magenta with a dark fuchsia shadow root). I like having non-natural hair colors and seeing the gorgeous combos I can make. A girl in 8th grade called me Lava Girl on Instagram. I’ve gotten more weird comments on my curls than my dyed hair actually. I never actually responded to that. I’m not sure what I would even say now.” ~ Jules Boucher MassBay ‘23 

Dying your hair is a form of self expression. We love doing it. It’s not because we lost a bet or because we are magical elves or we aren’t ourselves if we do it. It is for us. For the hell of it. So have fun, and enjoy yourself for who you are with or without colorful hair. 

Kayley Boulger

Framingham '23

I'm Kayley, and I'm a freshman living on campus this year. I'm originally from Wrentham mass, and I'm majoring in Psychology. I enjoy all forms of art and music and I get very passionate about things i feel are important.
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