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Merida Wig 1.0

When I decided to be Merida For Halloween this year (and clearly afterward as a cosplay) I knew that I was going to need a wig. A lot of wig. A lot of really orange based red wig. And curls. I didn’t want the wig to look too red, so I bought a fire orange wig from Arda Wigs and I plan to dye it more red. I thought I’d avoid the typical issue of the dye rubbing off the wig and try out using oil based sharpies instead of FW ink or regular sharpies. I did a small test on a bit of the wig by applying the sharpie directly to the hair and it didn’t rub off after a minute of drying. I figured it was full steam ahead so I assembled my materials:

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Unfortunately, this didn’t work. I broke open the markers, added the dye to the alcohol … and the dye turned orange. Bright, eye bleeding, orange. I didn’t even bother testing it on the wig as the dye was nearly the same colour the wig is right now. Sigh. So, all that dye went in the bin and I made my way out to Michaels craft store to get some red Liquitex acrylic dye to use instead.

I used 3/4 of each bottle of alcohol (I dumped the extra into a third bottle) and I split the pot of dye between the two bottles of alcohol. After shaking both bottles to combine the dye and alcohol, I dumped one bottle of the dye mixture into the bowl (that I’d lined with a plastic bag). I then placed the wig into the bowl and dumped the second bottle of dye mix onto it.

I let the wig sit in the bowl for about 10 minutes, during which time I gently massaged the wig making sure that the hairs were all covered in dye, and that the roots were thoroughly covered.

After I was happy with the colour, I took the wig out, put it on the wig head, and let it drip dry.

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Best part is the dye didn’t stain the bathtub!

This is what it looks like now that it’s 99% dry:

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It’s less flaming red and more orange based red than in the pictures, and since the wig I started with had highlights and lowlights, the dyed wig has them too! I can’t wait to get the extra wefts and dye, curl, and sew them in! I used my fingers to detangle the wig and hardly any of the dye came off on my hands and I didn’t even rinse it! I’m pretty impressed!

The next day when it was completely dry, I lightly hairsprayed the wig to add volume to the curls and I found that very, very little dye came off on my hands once the hairspray dried.

Have you dyed a wig? What did you use?

It Takes A Village To Cosplay!

Earla Alara

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