Harlequin Mills & Boon Medical Romance Novels

Colour Me Happy

I love experimenting with hair colour.

It might have been different if I’d been born with honey blonde hair, or midnight black, or rich chestnut, or flame red – then I would have been a very happy naturalist.

But being born with what I call medium-grade rat – not too light, not too dark, not too interesting, not too anything other than indistinct – I’ve felt no compunction to stick with the colour I was born with. And I have to say, the urge to whack on a scalp full of dye and see what happens, purely because my own colour is not so fabulous, is something I’ve come to appreciate. Put simply: change is fun.

Over the years, I’ve been through most of the traditional colours – variegated browns, every red from burgundy to copper to strawberry, a smorgasbord of blonde from gold to platinum, and the darkest shade of chocolate through to blue black. I’ve done two-tone, highlights, lowlights, permanents and semis, flirted with deep purple rinses and had a few pinkish moments.

Avril27(1)
Me as a relatively recent platinum blonde

In fact, there was a period of my life where I went through so many colour changes, my work colleagues joked I must have been in the witness protection program! When I look back at photos of myself from those days, I’m torn between laughing and wincing. But the truth is, I regret not one thing.

Which is probably why I enjoy plotting my characters’ hair. Fair or dark? Naturally, or by choice? Short or long? Straight, wavy, curly? Neat or tangled? Do they spend time worrying about their hair, or dash a comb through it and go? Fiddle with it or leave it alone once it’s done? Like or loathe going to the hairdresser?

Just answering those questions, I already have an idea about my characters. And in the interests of full disclosure, I’m going to answer those questions about myself:

  • Naturally dark
  • Fair by choice
  • Depends on the month but currently collar-length
  • Wavy
  • Tangled
  • Fiddler extraordinaire
  • Like the hairdresser, but it’s about the ends result, not the experience

    P1000878 (979x1024)
    Current hair!

At the moment, I’m sporting a mid-range bob in red gold (I think it’s a reaction to writing a few too many redheaded heroines, and perhaps a little obsession with Demelza Poldark). I am, however, already thinking ahead to early 2016 when I’m contemplating going pixie blonde (think Mia Farrow in the 1960s).

Is it a coincidence that the heroine I’m currently writing sports a baby blonde pixie cut? Hmm, I’m starting to see a pattern.

I’d love to hear if you’re a naturalist or an experimenter. Meanwhile, I’ll leave you with one of my most recent redheaded heroines…

Cover USHe suggested a ‘friends with benefits’ arrangement…

It was going to be:

  • Two nights a week
  • Strictly confidential
  • One month only…

It might have been his proposition, but lawyer Kate Cleary is so buttoned up she whips out a contract for them both to sign! Seeing her in her high heels and stockings, all Scott Knight can do is sign and quickly move on to the implementation stage!

 Kate couldn’t be more jaded about relationships. After all, she’s in the business of ending marriages! Millionaire architect Scott might be seriously sexy, but he’s also a complicated enigma—one she’s quickly becoming determined to solve…even if that means breaking the terms of her own watertight contract…

I hope you’ll check out my website, or connect with me on Facebook, Twitter or Pinterest!

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13 thoughts on “Colour Me Happy”

  1. Oh I do so admire people who are brave with hair. I loved your platinum do! And I love you as a redhead.

    My more recent hair experimentation is more about varying the length (sooo tempted to go back pixie again!!) because apart from regular blonde streaks (always done by the hairdresser) I’ve never dyed my hair…… way too chicken.

    I’m definitely about the experience at the hairdresser – the pampering and gossip 🙂

    1. I was timid to start with but once I started I never looked back! Although there is one horrendous period involving a black style reminiscent of a rock star with a mullet that I look at with awe. My greatest challenge at the moment is resisting the urge to have my fringe re-cut. I always regret a fringe within three days.

  2. OHH, it must be hair week! I got a new do yesterday…first change in 17 years. The last one was pretty radical…went from mid spine length to super super short and my hair went into shock for three months as it wondered where the weight and length had gone. 17 years ago, I had just given birth to my youngest and I delivered him, the placenta and then my hair color. I went from titian (RED) to blah. I didn’t notice at first until people starting asking me where the boys had got their red hair from and when I said me they looked at me with a pitying smile as if I was living in lab-lah land. So, since then I have had to pay to have my natural color put back in and I have never strayed from that. I think you are very brave and I love you as a platinum blonde!

    1. I love your new cut. I’ve found the trickiest thing with short hair is to get it looking super cool and edgy and you nailed that. I suspect I will be reverting to platinum for 2016, but it will definitely mean hacking it all off because it’s a little fried on the ends.

  3. Avril! Gorgeous. Love both colours. And your Coiffure Tenacity! I was a platinum blonde through University and loved it. Since then have been a copper head, black, coltishly mahogany and then started noticing that actually, colouring it more frequently was going to be necessary owing to – ahem! – developments in the slate grey department. So – as living in denial is one of my favourite things – I am actually off to the hair dressers next Wednesday! I’m going for espresso rich with just the tiniest splash of sunshine. Who says I look a day over mumble mumble mumble? I will read a trashy magazine and drink one of their glasses of fizz Just For You. x Annie O’

    1. Ah, you’re one of my kind! I just keep saying to my hairdresser don’t be shy with the colour and go all natural on me – I’m not a wallflower so pack it in! My hairdresser is so chic they actually have a wine list!

      1. Holy crow. That’s AWESOME. We just get white red or bubbly…I might have to tell them about yours. The owner is Aussie so she might be inspired! There is zero chance I will go natural. Not unless I want to start selling my own homemade granola and wearing socks with my Birkenstocks. My mother has, thankfully, covered that turf on my behalf.

        1. I, also, am a Birkenstock-free zone. I even have a little spray can to top up my roots should they become too unsightly between visits. And yes, I’ll bet your hairdresser would embrace the wine list.

  4. I’m so much the naturalist or just lazy. I colored my hair when I was 40 for the first time. I had a little gray then. I colored it again when I was 40 and a half. That was the last time. I didn’t like the roots showing. I also didn’t want to go to the hair dresser or pay the money to keep my hair up. I worried I wouldn’t be able to stand the shock of turning completely gray and not know it. Today I’m what my hair dresser calls smoky and happy.
    I do love your color though..

    1. If my hair had the decency to turn a nice clean shade of grey, I might embrace it. But alas, those little patches are not showing anything pleasant so it’s fake colour all the way for me.

  5. Love both your blonde and your red-gold styles, Avril. My hair’s been the same length and colour (shortish and reddish) for the last couple of years now, and I’m starting to get bored with that, so I think I need a change. I might try growing the colour out, just to see what’s going on underneath and whether I like it or not. After dying a white streak at the front when I was in my twenties, I think I have a real one now 🙂

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