When it comes to hair care, I'm hardly about glitz and glamour. I prefer a lower maintenance routine with less hassle—but that hasn't always been the case. I've rocked pixie cuts, heavy bangs, and Rapunzel-length tresses alike, but my absolute favorite look was during my art school days, when I dyed a front chunk of hair bright pink—as one does while studying for conceptual storytelling class. I still remember the smell of bleach.
That radiant rose is long gone, but I still find myself yearning for the monotony-busting color that once was.
Enter the dream team of Hayley Williams (yes, from Paramore) and Brian O'Connor, longtime friends and advocates of self-expression and discovery. The duo founded Good Dye Young, a growing cruelty-free brand of hair color, products, and tools with an emphasis on being bold, bright, and beautifully obnoxious.
Now sold in Sally Beauty stores across the U.S., Good Dye Young has concocted a line of temporary hair makeup it calls Poser Paste ($18, available in eight colors). The mixture applies easily, holds its vibrancy even on darker shades of hair, and washes out completely with an enthusiastic shower lather.
Applied with your hands (don't worry, this stuff washes out of basically everything), the product is uncomplicated enough to administer. But if you plan on brushing out the color (Good Dye Young recommends you do this to achieve a more "natural" look), you'll want to do so within a minute or so of use. The quick-dry time lowers the likelihood of paste transferring to your clothes or skin but leaves little wiggle room for brushing. Wait too long, and the product will begin pilling after a comb-through—not unlike the beads of fabric on the very sweater you were trying to keep the color away from in the first place.
Another downside to the pink plaster is just how rigid it makes your hair. During my initial trial, I added product all over my head, which resulted in an uncomfortable matted mess.
Even so, what a beautiful mess it was. My unprofessional application notwithstanding, Good Dye Young's "Ex-Girl" Poser Paste performed its duties well. The pigment presented vibrantly in my medium-brown hair, and it was simple to style with a curling wand as advertised. I carried the lessons from my first attempt into a second execution with better results—I can confirm that a little of this stuff goes along way.
Bearing that in mind, I found that coating a single strand—and not brushing it through—create a softer, more organic style. This strategy also made for a much smoother clean-up, both on my hands and the bathroom counter. For my next stab at it, I'm taking a dip-dyed approach.
If you, like me, are unseasoned in the art of hair makeup, a little practice may be required to accomplish the look you're going for. Still, Poser Paste is a truly easy-to-use alternative to making the leap into a more permanent pop of color. If Good Dye Young is accepting of my poser status, well, then I guess I am, too.