Saturday, February 28, 2015

Keeping red hair, red.

The title of this post is deceiving, if you were coming for surefire tips and tricks of the trade from a professional fake red head- I apologize but you are about to be severely disappointed. This is much less of a post on what to do and much more on what NOT to do, laced with a few tricks that might actually work.

I am a new red head that is struggling to keep any of my hair red, besides the roots which are a Clifford level shade of red. You see, I have had red hair before and maybe I am subconsciously blocking out the trauma and stress of trying to maintain red hair dye but for the life of me I do not remember it being this hard. 

I had red hair when I was 14, when I was 15 (the hair color, spicy salsa red, which I distinctly remember not being difficult to maintain) and then again my freshman year of college. 

(Left: college, Top Right: 15, Bottom Right, 14) 

However, recently for the first time in 3 years, I decided to go 100% red again and it's proving to be very difficult. I impulsively made the decision to go red and completely unlike my personality I started with a mild red- hoping it would do the trick. It looked nice at first but over night it faded so returning to my normal go big or go home attitude, I bought a very intense red and tried again. Yes, I died my hair twice in one weekend (apparently that is a bad thing)

The second time came out looking fabulously red that my roommate told me was 'edgy'. Having a secret desire to be as edgy as possibe without being weird, I vowed to keep my hair this red until being marketable for jobs is more important than my edge, forever. Despite my determination to be the only fake red head in all of the world to deal with immediate fading, the shower proved to be ruthless on my fresh and edgy new color. After hours of complaining and repeatedly harassing my roommates by popping out at random moments asking, "On a scale of brown-10 how red is my hair," I began doing research on how to keep red hair dye longer- I settled upon a few things NOT to do, and a few tricks that actually work.

Things that work:

  1. Wash your hair in cold water, This was appropriately timed in my life with a campus propane shortage and request to take shorter,colder showers. However, I didn't believe this was an actual thing that works but the other methods were more high-maintenance and I am lazy. So I gave it a shot, and it actually helped decrease the fading with each shower. There is some scientific reason as to why this works, but I don't really care so I will not even attempt to explain it- it's legit. Google it if you want to know. 
  2. DEVINE'S RED COLOR DEPOSITING CONDITIONER This stuff is a God send, I swear. If Jesus was a hair product, he would be this one. My halfhearted attempt at explaining this: It's a bright pink jar of bliss that you put in your hair and keep there for a few minutes then wash out and pray your hair is still red. It helped to restore some of the red that had faded after the first week of dying it. While it didn't return it to the normal red, it is maintaining it until my patience runs out and I redye my hair. 
The things I ignored that probably work if you have more commitment than I do:
  1. Wash your hair every other day. I have short hair that gets gross fast, so I will never try this but not surprisingly, not washing your hair is a surefire way to not wash out your dye. 
  2. Professional Dye. I am poor and can barely afford name brand bagels, a professional dye job is not going to happen however, they know what they're doing better than a box. 
  3. Glazes in between colors. I found a few articles that pointed be towards, saying they had magnificent glazes. However, you cannot order them online and driving to the store was too much of an effort- if you happen to pick some up feel free to mail them my way. 
  4. Sulfate free shampoo. Another one I have no motivation to look into. However almost every article said to avoid sulfate hair products. Again, probably something science-y. 
  5. Avoid the sun. I live in central PA and right now I am having a hard time remembering that the sun exists in these sub zero temps. However, I sure for those of you that I absolutely hate right now that live in tropical, sunny places- this is something to consider. I was just given a sample of Avon Advance Techniques Color Protection, That I plan on using when I go to FLORIDA IN TWO WEEKS! 
So there you have it, the lazy person's guide to halfheartedly attempting to preserve red hair. I plan on re-dying my hair right before my Florida trip and will probably come back with more things you shouldn't do like lay in the sun or swim in chlorine. Stay tuned for that!

What do you do to maintain your red hair? Any low maintenance tips for other lazy red heads? 

Tuesday, February 17, 2015


Recently, I have had an unsettled feeling within myself, a constant sense that the future is rapidly approaching. My typical demeanor is a relaxed one that radiates a ‘go with the flow’ attitude. I am armed with a laid back spirit that allows me to roll with the punches but also a fighter side that kicks in when necessary. However, as I watch my friends prepare for their future I find myself hitting panic mode. I recognize that my journey is slightly different than my peers in which I find myself taking a victory lap around the track of high education. (This wording is what I use to stomach the thought of the thousands of extra dollars I have to fork over)  

After my undergraduate, I have plans which at this point seem to align with God’s, to continue straight into my graduate work. This process is an open ended process which requires applications, standardized testing, interviews and a lot of essays. It also requires vulnerability, a willingness to move far away and a lack of certainty about my near future. As a young adult I have always had an underlying sense of security. There was always something or someone that provided a sense of structure in my life. While there have certainly been times where I have had to wholeheartedly rely on God to provide, this next venture is a unique level of abandonment and blind faith.

In this time I must accept that my next step may not be revealed yet, I must cling to God’s truth. I pray to hold in my heart the truth that my security does not come from a defined set of goals and outcomes. My security is hinged on the Great I am. I am held by the hands which hung the starts in the sky. I am known by the one who knows each of those stars by name. I have been called by name and created with a unique purpose (Isaiah 43:1) When I feel rattled by uncertainty, I am comforted. Not by the knowledge of how it will all work out but with the knowledge that it will all work out, that he works all things together for the good of those who love him (Romans 8:28) and that has plans for me, plans to prosper not to harm.  (Jerimiah 29:11) A midst this season uncertainty it is easy to lose alignment with God. When I find myself searching fervently for what is next, I must remember it is not about what I am doing but rather who I am doing it for. When I realign my heart, mind and goals with God I can rest in his truth.

In the meantime I will be searching for grad schools in the South because this 0 degree weather is clearly the work of the devil. 

Thursday, February 12, 2015

This is my "I have nothing to post about but I committed to post once a week" post. I'm drowning in a to-do list, a new internship and the second week of the semester "I have no idea what I'm doing" stress. I have loved this blog thing and recently my blog has taken off in ways I didn't imagine... people are actually looking at my blog and interacting with me and my content. I love it!

This week though, I'm drained and have so many blog ideas but no energy to execute the plans. So I am going to be narcissistic enough to assume that you want to hear all about my week and do an almost end of the week round up of my highs, lows and favorites since the last time I posted.


I got my meal planning and snack separating done early, which makes my mornings and weeks run much smoother.

I discovered a new Shakeology combination that makes my heart sing. I know I do not look thrilled, but I am.

My hair is in a pony tail FINALLY and I get to dress up twice a week for my internship #dresses

Gwyn. This girl, my favorite, best ever friend in the entire world is getting on a bus tomorrow and coming to see me this weekend! We are the type of best friends that no one else wants to be around because we are only funny to each other and no one understands our inside jokes. We are referred to as Gwemily, because if you're talking about Gwyn you're probably talking about Emily too. So #gwemilyreunion is happening this weekend and I am OVER THE MOON EXCITED. 

I committed the great glass massacre of 2015 Monday morning in my kitchen and almost lost my finger in the process. Moment of silence for the three glasses who were tragically lost at the hands of a clumsy dishwasher. 

It's that time, like that time. Hint, hint. That week where I lay on the floor of my apartment and contemplate never getting up. I'm still laying here, it's been 4 days. Send help,


This perfectly sums up how I am feeling about this new semester. 

I am sorry for the lame not post, post. I promise something real in the near future. 

Thursday, February 5, 2015

26 Things I Would Tell My Freshman Self

The other day I was pondering my college career thus far and marveling at how far I have come since then. My first year was an absolute disaster, I made it all of one semester before I took time off- I honestly never planned on returning to Messiah College but God does not normally follow the plan I intend. When I did return, I was still a slight mess and it took me a little while to get things straight, however I have made tremendous strides in my academics, my faith, my leadership, and have grown overall as a person. Reading my old journals, in some ways I hardly even recognize the person I was. Sometimes I wish I could go back and have a talk with past Emily, so in a recent journal I began making a list of things I would say to my freshman year self if we could sit down and have a little chit chat; Here are some of my favorites.

  1. All-nighters are ineffective and unhealthy. Just go to bed.
  2. Breakfast really is the most important meal of the day. 
  3. No, coffee does not constitute a balanced breakfast.
  4. You've never studied before, learn how to. Find a study method that works for you. Reevaluate as necessary. 
  5. Get to know your professors, they're there to help you and having a relationship helps professionally and academically.
  6. Resumes are important. Make one when you do not need it, you will thank yourself in the moments you're asked to present one. 
  7. Do not sign up for Pinterest the weekend before your first ever finals week. That is an awful life decision. 
  8. Learn how to ask for help. Whether it be in school or in life, it is okay to need help.
  9. Answer your mothers texts, she loves you, misses you and she made you. (Yes, mom I am still working on this one)
  10. Homesickness is a blessing, as my father says "The only people who get homesick are people who have homes."
  11. Rent your books. You will never get the price you paid if you buy them and sell them back.
  12. While we're talking about books, let's be real- you are not going to do all of your reading assignments. And that's okay.
  13. Build yourself a new community, find your new people- you will stop feeling homesick when you realize home is much more than a place.
  14. Travel as much and as often as possible. Study abroad, mission trips, weekend road trips- whatever it may be- GO!
  15. You will learn more just outside your comfort zone than you ever will tucked safely inside the walls of the familiar. When you feel stretched, pulled and uncomfortable it means you are growing. 
  16. You do not need 8 pairs of boots. 
  17. Healthy eating is a tricky balance. It means eating enough just as much as it means not eating too much.
  18. Your roommate does not have to be your best friend and your best friend does not have to be your roommate. 
  19. That 6th ear piercing was a bad idea, just stop at the 5th.
  20. While we're on irreversible body modification, skip the foot tattoo too. 
  21. 8 ams suck but if you schedule morning classes you will be don early and being done by noon is a literal gift from the heavens. 
  22. Never, ever, ever take more than 1 night class at a time. You have ADHD, you little over achiever- you will want to die by mid terms. 
  23. Make time for your friends and roommates, they miss you.
  24. Do not for one second think you can work 4 jobs, volunteer at church, be in a club, take 6 classes and not have a slight mental breakdown. Stop over glorifying busy. 
  25. Learn to use the word No and learn to use it without guilt. 
  26.  Most importantly, Have fun, it is going to fly by faster than you realize.