Gonna Dye that Blonde Right Out of Bab's Hair!
by Carlota

(A "How-To" guide to creating funky colors without having to reroot
--or--
a quick and easy way to freak people out in 15 minutes or less.)

Barbie really lends herself to two things:  high fashion and funky fashion.

I, myself, prefer the latter.

    All you will need to achieve these wonderful colors are:
    a $5 blonde doll
    Liquitex acrylic paint in the color of your choice
    a fine-toothed flea comb ($1-$5 in most stores)
    small Dixie-cup (bathroom size)
    water
    a small shallow dish
    newspaper or rags

    Tips on choosing a doll:
    Choose a doll with the shiny hair that has thick strands. The thin fibrous hair will not take the dye as well.

    Tips on choosing a color:
    Reds tend to come out orangey, and black tends to be a silvery-grey. The colors I used to acheive the above results were (from left to right):  Cadmium Yellow, Phthalocyanine Blue, Hibiscus Pink and Dioxazine Purple of the Liquitex brand name.
    Not pictured: Crimson Red (which resulted in a Tangerine color) and Emerald Green (which resulted in a gorgeous Lime!).
    Choose rich, saturated colors to get neon results.

    Preparing the Dye:
    Squirt about a dime-sized dallop of the paint into the bottom of the Dixie cup. Fill the cup 3/4 full of water.  Stir well until all the paint is dissoved.  You should have colored water. Pour the colored water into your shallow dish.

    The Dyeing Process:
    Place the doll, hair fanned out, onto the newspaper or rags.
    Dip the flea comb into your dye.
    Comb the dye through the doll's hair.
    Repeat this until all the hair has been dyed (about 15 minutes of solid brushing).
    If necessary, touch up the roots using the dye and an artist brush.

    The Drying Process:
    I learned this the hard way:   TURN YOUR DOLL UPSIDE DOWN TO DRY!!
    Any wet hair touching the face will color the face, as well!
    You can use a dryer set on cold, but it's best to just let the dye take on its own.  I generally leave the doll to dry for three to four days, just for good measure.  Brush often (twice daily) while the hair is still wet to make sure it does not stiffen up.

    Once the hair is dry, it should be as soft and silky as a non-dyed doll. This is also completely washable in a mild soap and cold water! The dolls in these pictures (taken 6/22/97) were dyed over a year prior to this picture, and the dye has held beautifully, even 3 years later.

Return to the Artist Tips Page Return to the Doll Raves Homepage