I am a natural redhead. No really, I have the baby pictures to prove it. When you grow up with red hair (auburn in my case), it becomes a defining characteristic. It's usually the first thing that people use to describe you and sometimes, much to the chagrin of many a redhead, it is the source of your first nickname. As a little kid, I didn't particularly like my red hair because it was different. But eventually, I came to embrace it for the same reason.
Somewhere between babyhood and middle age, long before grey hair became a problem, my red hair faded to brown. I can remember my mother telling me that "redheads lose their pigment early" when I was a child, but I never really understood what she meant until it happened.
Seems that around the age of 32, that heinous bitch mother nature decided that it was indeed time to take the red pigment from my hair, but when she did so, she never bothered to adjust my skin color to match. The loss of red was very gradual. So gradual, that it took a long time for me to notice. It was sort of like I woke up one morning and noticed that my skin looked like a vomit-tinged shade of taupe. I looked at myself in the mirror, convinced that I was dying of some horrific blood disease. Once I got through reeling over the other-worldly color of my skin, I noticed my eyebrows. Who the hell put those there when I wasn't looking? It was like mother nature sent in the eyebrow fairy to make a deposit on my head while I slept. It was the furry black brows that finally tipped me off to the fact that my red hair had indeed faded.
Prior to this little life event, I had always prided myself on the fact that I never had to groom my eyebrows. While my friends plucked and waxed and subjected themselves to various forms of medieval torture, my brows just chilled. They had a natural arch, were reasonably populated and were a light reddish brown color. I never touched them until that fateful morning when I magically went from graceful arch to Groucho Marx.
I looked at my brows in the mirror in complete disbelief. They had become black, thick and unruly. They had somehow gotten disproportionately darker than my darkening hair. They were like two black caterpillars crawling across my forehead. Think Joe Jonas or Bert from Sesame Street. It was a major WTF moment in my life.
Something had to be done. It was at this time that I turned to the bottle. . . of hair dye that is. Ever since that fateful day I have been dying my hair every six weeks and bleaching and shaping my brows as soon as I see a Muppet looking back at me in the mirror. Considering my off the charts laziness, I resent the hell out of this required maintenance. But, the dark brown racing stripe down the center of my head becomes all the incentive that I need to keep on a regular touch-up schedule.
Nowadays I have to battle both the brown and the grey in my hair. Seems the greys don't take to the dye as kindly as the brown does. I guess that this will become more of an issue when I get morethan the sprinkling of grey hairs that I currently have. I suppose that when that day comes, I will have to switch to a darker color of dye and leave it in longer or (gasp) even worse, visit a professional colorist. That problem seems manageable. But what about the brows? What happens when they go grey? If they go grey as quickly as they went Jonas, I am going to wake up one morning looking like Andy Rooney. Holy shit! I can't afford to have another visit from the eyebrow fairy. Get me an IV drip of Starbucks! I'm never sleeping again.