Whether you're a home dye aficionado or a total novice when it comes to the ol' plastic gloves, Vaseline eyebrows and stained towels, there are some stages we ALL go through before, during and after vigorously shaking that bottle.
And no matter how many times you go through the process, you'll come up against the same damn challenges and forget the very things you promised yourself you'd remember the next time around.
And if you think you're alone in this, trust us – you're not.
1. The shade conundrum
No matter how many times you've used it or how certain you are about the shade you want, the moment you're faced with a shelf full of dye in the local pharmacy, your brain will go to mush.
"I want a kind of dark red…but not red red…the other red…that looks brown. Do you have it?"
2. The science part
The minute you tweak the lid on that solution and carefully add it to the bottle of cream, you may as well be in a lab with the world's top brains.
"Look at me! I'm making one thing out of another thing, and now I am shaking it like a pro."
3. The vigorous shaking
If you don't begin your dye application with aching arms, then you didn't shake hard enough.
"I've been shaking for seven minutes, but maybe one minute more will guarantee the absolute perfect shade. Can't risk it."
4. The frantic scrub
Even though you applied Vaseline to the tops of your ears, nape of your neck and across your forehead, you'll still find dye edging its way onto your skin and settling in like a semi-permanent tattoo.
"The corner of the towel will get that…Wait, why is it not going away? Oh my God, maaaaaaaam!"
5. The towel panic
You were careful, you were so very, very careful, but still you've destroyed half a towel, one face cloth and the edge of the bathroom curtains.
"For the love of…I'll be killed."
6. The crucial countdown
Giving yourself 15 minutes more than recommended to be certain the dye will do its job is part and parcel of the dyeing process.
"Pfft, 30 minutes? What do they know? I'm going for an hour if I want. I'm not listening to them. I know my own hair."
7. The head over the bath rinse
In mild agony, you'll watch more dye than you thought possible wash itself down the plughole and you'll worry there'll be none left in your hair.
"I knew it, I should have gone for the two hours."
8. The conditioner worship
There's something about the smell of the conditioner which comes in home packs that makes you wonder why they can't all smell like that.
"I'm going to find out if they sell this in industrial sized packs."
9. The styling
From the the use of various heat-protectant products to the drying and styling, this process is by far the most exciting.
"This is the shade that's going to change my life", you'll tell yourself while worrying you may have left it on too long in the end.
10. The big reveal
No matter what shade you wanted or tone you were going for, you are almost NEVER greeted with your initial expectation.
Sometimes you love it even more, and other times you question why you're allowed do anything unsupervised.