DIY Ombre Hair

I am a little behind the times with the Ombre Hair Sensation (I just coined that) which has taken Hollywood by storm.  Sarah Jessica Parker, Jessica Biel, and Gisele Bundchen are just a few of the ladies of Tinseltown that have made this look famous.  I have been wanting to give this a try because obviously, I will look exactly like them in every way if I copy their hair.

I scoured the internet for DIY videos for a whole 45 minutes and decided that I was ready to give it a try.  I have been coloring my hair at home for about 13 years now so I wasn’t terribly hesitant;  not that experience even matters for this look.  I think my 7 year old brother could have done this for me with his eyes closed.  Also, who wants to spend the “$350.00 Because I live in LA” price at a salon?  Not this girl.

The supplies you will likely need for this DIY project are:

  • A bleaching kit
  • A good conditioner
  • Some toner/toning shampoo (go to Sally’s and ask for purple shampoo)
  • A hair brush
  • Clothes that you would really love to ruin
  • Foil
  • A serious ventilation system for your bathroom (shit gets serious when the fumes start to reach your brain)

People say to make sure your hair is at least one day dirty.  WELP, I had to work that day and I do take showers often.  So, I skipped this tip.  Seriously…it didn’t make a difference as I wasn’t coloring my scalp.

The bleaching kit that I bought came with an applicator bottle.  I assume this is fine to use but I decided to mix it in a bowl and apply with my gloved hands.

Also, before beginning, understand that this will be a 2-step coloring process.  As in, color once…rinse…color again.  Make sense?

Alright, let’s do this.

STEP ONE-

Comb your hair out and part it down the middle as shown below (FYI, I hate taking pictures of myself.  They are purposely blurry and obscure).

STEP TWO-

Decision making time.  How high from the tips of your hair do you want your ombre hair to be in effect?  I went just below my shoulders.

Using my hands, I saturated the hair that I wanted to be colored.

I let this sit for about 8 minutes and then rinsed my hair in the sink.  If you have hair as dark as mine, you will easily see the hair developing and lightening.  Don’t overdo this or you will be a sad, sad panda.  You can see here that it is obviously changing and it has been less than 10 minutes:

Seriously, watch the clock.  Don’t let this get away from you.

STEP THREE-

Completely blow dry your hair.  Apply the bleach to half of what you colored in the first development.  This is important because it will help with the ombre/gradient effect: darkest on the top, fading to a lighter brown, then blondest on the tips.  Hopefully that makes decent sense.  At this point, you can put some foil on the ends to keep the color on the ends from drying out in the air.  See my incredibly chic photo below:

I left this last bit of color on my tips for another 5 minutes.  Feel free to leave it on longer if you have lighter hair or want a more dramatic look.  I just didn’t want it to be so incredibly drastic (a-la Drew Barrymore…seriously… Google that shit) so I didn’t let this process for too long.

STEP FOUR-

Shower time!  I rinsed all of the bleach out of my hair.  Then, I used the toning shampoo to try to remove any brassiness that might be lingering.  Once this step was completed, I did a serious deep conditioning.  I really recommend this as bleach terrorizes relentlessly.

Blow dry and check it out!  If you don’t think it is drastic enough, you should have some bleach left over to go in for a third processing.  Good luck with that.  Your hair will murder you in your sleep.

I was satisfied with my end result and didn’t go back for more.  Yeah, this is an instagrammed photo and I don’t care who knows it.

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DIY Show stopping scarves!

With the new year and recently becoming engaged, I have found myself putting my budget at the top of my priority list and it being even more strict than before. However, a tight budget doesn’t always mix well with a shopaholic. I have managed to stay under my budget with all of the help from my internet BFF, Pinterest! I’ve been in need for a new scarf for awhile but I haven’t allowed myself to spend the money on the $45.00 scarf I saw at Macy’s.  So, I decided to make my own! For how much you ask? FREE!   Here’s how:

You need:

  • Old tee-shirt
  • scissors
  • glue
  1. Lay the t-shirt flat on the ground. Use your scissors to cut about 1″ rows of fabric all the way to the armpit of the shirt.

(The dog is optional ha. )

2. Pull each strand so it is stretched out and each piece is around the same length.

Photo Courtesy of Ette Studios

  • Gather all of the pieces together. I looped them on the palm of my hand so they were all hanging from my hand at full length. Since I used a shirt that had a seam in it, i put all of the seams together so they were easier to hide.

    Photo Courtesy Ette Studios

    3. Cut an additional piece of fabric from the shirt to use to wrap around the seams to cover them and also add some design to your scarf. Glue the end of the additional fabric down so it doesn’t come loose.

4. You can play around with what you want to add to your scarf, or just leave it plain, but I wanted to add some subtle “bling” to mine.  I had an old necklace from Forever 21 laying around that was perfect.  It was added simply by mixing the chain in with my fabric and braiding it in. I wrapped the additional fabric around the top of the chain where the seams of the shirt were being covered to make sure the chain would be secure.

5.  You’re finished! Best part of these is that they are totally custom and so easy to make! You can dress them up or wear them with your favorite casual outfit as well for a little added flare!

I’d love to see what you all come up with!

Miracle DIY Mask!

It seems like stress and the holiday season go hand in hand, right?  Who’s skin really enjoys all of the stress and craziness? Not mine! I found an amazing and super easy face mask to help relax my skin and reduce any inflammation and brighten it all at once without any harmful chemicals! What makes this mask even better? It’s DIY and can be done for under $10.00!

  • 2 Tablespoons Honey ($5.00 from Vons)
  • 1 tsp of cinnamon  ($1.49 from Vons)
  • 1 tsp nutmeg       ($3.00 from Vons)
**Note** It’s always a good idea to do a small test of the mixture on a small patch of your skin to make sure you don’t have a reaction.

Mix all ingredients into a small bowl until they form a paste.

Apply to face in a circular motion until applied evenly on entire face. Let the mask sit for a half hour.

Wash the mask off with warm water in a circular motion for exfoliation

Voila! Your skin will feel refreshed, relaxed and bright!

DIY Teeth whitener!

We all want to have those perfect white teeth.  But who can really see themselves spending $50.00 and up for teeth whiteners that can leave your teeth so sensitive you don’t even want to smile?

Here is a quick, super easy, and cheap DIY teeth whitener that works just as well!

What you need:

  • Toothpaste (use a paste instead of a gel)
  • One teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon water
  • Small mixing bowl

Put a small amount of your toothpaste into the bowl.  Mix in baking soda and water.  Thoroughly mix together and brush your teeth for two minutes.  Repeat once a week until your desired results are reached.  Once your teeth are sparkling, make sure you limit the use to once or twice a month.

$12.00 Vegetable Soup!

Who else out there is a soup fanatic?  I love it and make it all the time.  I make it from scratch or just eat it from the can. I don’t want to mislead anyone, I am not a super great soup maker.  I can only really make one soup…vegetable soup where you throw random veggies in a pot and hope it tastes good in a few hours.  That’s the kind that I make.  I look forward to attempting actual recipes, but for now, this is what I do!

I think that the most attractive part of this soup is its cost (you will spend around $12.00 for about 10-12 servings) and the calorie content is pretty low.  Don’t ask me for specifics because I can not give that to you.  But, I did sort of rip my idea from The Cabbage Soup Diet when I was feeling like going on a weight loss cleanse; so it cant be high on the calorie scale!  I have amended it slightly but those are its roots!

Ingredients:

  • 1-2 onions (any kind you want; I often buy 1 yellow and one red but do whatever) chopped
  • 2 cloves of garlic (or 5, whatever your heart desires!)
  • 1 large carrot
  • 1 bunch of celery
  • 1 bunch of kale (I used collard greens in the pictured batch because they were fresh out of kale at my grocery)
  • 1/2 head of green cabbage
  • 1 can of kidney beans
  • 2-3 tablespoons of olive oil
  • 1 can of beef consommé
  • 1 49-50 oz can of chicken stock
  • Quite a few pinches of fines herbes

First step, chop up those onions and garlic cloves.  Toss them in a large saucepan with the olive oil.  Sprinkle in a pinch of fines herbes.  This is super important!  It really helps with the flavoring of the soup as we are not adding a ton of salt.  I already had some at home that my mom and I packaged one Christmas.  See!  There I am (with blonde hair and really good looking) at our herbal packaging plant aka. the dining table.

Anyway, you are going to be sauteing this on medium heat for about 15 minutes.  The goal is to get it golden brown and caramelized.  I usually hike the heat up to medium-high after about 10 minutes.  See what works for your stove to get to the caramelly goodness.  I am going to stress this again.  Please be patient with this step.  It is crucial to making the soup flavorful!  I don’t add salt because it truly doesn’t need it if this step is done correctly.  Add some black pepper if you desire, though not necessary.

Meanwhile, you will have chopped up some carrots.  Add these to the onion and garlic mixture to soften up for about 5-8 minutes

After that has been nicely softened, add your can of beef consommé.  Don’t add water, just the contents of the can.  Throw in another pinch of fines herbes.  Let this come to a boil and then lower heat to simmer.

While this was heating up, you were super busy chopping up that bunch of celery, weren’t you?  I actually hate celery unless it is cooked in a soup.  So when I do celery in soup, I do a lot of it!  Add this to the consommé mixture and let it come to a boil, then lower to simmer as you did when it was initially added.

Once this has been simmering for a few minutes, go ahead and add that chicken stock.  Also add 50 oz of water (just fill the stock can back up and dump it in).  Bring this to a boil.  Ah, why not…throw in another pinch of fines herbes.  While this is cooking away, you are chopping up those collard greens (or kale if you had the desired ingredient) and cabbage.  I really recommend that you really chop away at those collard greens.  If the chunks are too big, they are pretty difficult to eat!   As you can see from my photo, I didn’t do a stellar job at following my own rule.

 

Add these greens to the soup pot with care.  You will add it in small handfuls while pushing it down with a spoon.  Do this until all are in the pot.  Bring back to a boil and then simmer.  You can eat this soup the same day that you make it, but I would recommend letting it simmer complete for at least 40 minutes.   Of course, as with most soups, it is much better the day after.

If you live alone like I do, this is a great soup to eat off of for 3-4 days.  Storing the whole pot in the fridge makes it easiest to grab it and throw it on the stove for quick reheating (I don’t recommend microwaving in general).

Enjoy (how can you not for $12.00?)!!