8 Simple Steps for Highlighting Your Child’s Hair With Kool-Aid

By: Atara Twersky, author of Curlee Girlee  Facebook | Twitter Instagram Pinterest

It’s summer time your daughter wants to have some fun…she is begging you to dye her hair bright pink…do you let her?

I have to confess I was torn when I had to answer this question. My oldest child, 11-years-old with long straight hair down her back was “dyeing” to highlight her hair. It wasn’t a question of if, only what color. Blue or hot pink? She couldn’t decide.  I was pretty against it.  Dyeing your  hair is somewhat of a commitment, but then I had an idea! What if we just did the ends? This way if it didn’t look as good as we had hoped, we would trim her ends and no one would ever know…perfect! My daughter agreed and the dip-dye idea was set into motion!

It turned out fantastic! She looked adorable and all her friends started to beg their moms to allow them to do it too. Suddenly, my daughter’s classmates had pink, blue and purple hair strands. Fast-forward six months. It is now summer time and my 6-year-old little curlee girlee is now wanting to be just like her big sister…but she’s only six! I was really conflicted.  Plus, her hair is curly, so it is a totally different texture and I need to be much more gentle with her hair.  After quite a bit  of begging and pleading and a fair amount of research on the subject on my part  I finally relented.


This time however, we are going to do things a bit differently. We were not going to the salon, we are going to use Kool-Aid and instead of doing the ends as I did with my older daughter, I took one curly strand in the front and dyed that pink.


So here are my eight steps for dip-dyeing your child’s hair in your own home:

  1. You will need two packets of Kool-Aid; sugar free is better since the sugar will make the hair sticky.
  2. Poke a hole through a large garbage bag and place it over your child so she doesn’t ruin her clothes — better to do this outside if at all possible.
  3. Choose a strand (or strands) of hair that you want to color and clip up the rest of the hair.
  4. Boil two cups of water. When the water is hot, put Kool-Aid in the pot and stir until it dissolves.
  5. Place the colored Kool-Aid in mug or bowl that will withstand heat.
  6. Place strand(s) in the Kool-Aid cup and let it sit for 20 minutes. I set the alarm on my phone to make sure the time was accurate. (We initially did 10 minutes, but the dye seemed to fade rather quickly, so 20 minutes will ensure that the color sets) Do less time initially if you are hesistant in any way.
  7. Once the 20 minutes are up, remove hair from the Kool-Aid mixture. Take paper towels and pat the strands until they are no longer wet.
  8. Blow dry the hair so it dries and the color sets.