*This post does contain affiliate links. These are the exact products I personally use to dye my hair.*

I consider myself to be a sort of hair-bleaching expert. Self-taught through trial and error, of course. However, I have bleached my hair at home for a few years now and have pretty much mastered the art of how to bleach hair safely.Opinion Outpost BannerBelieve it or not, I naturally have medium to dark brown hair. I decided I wanted to bleach my hair in high school, and not thinking that I could do it myself, I went to the hair salon. One thing that frustrated me about going to the salon was that they wanted to gradually lighten my hair, so they put in highlights all over. I would then go back to the salon weeks later for the next round of highlights, continuing the process. Not only was this annoying, but it was also very, very expensive.

So…I decided to teach myself how to bleach hair at home. I have tried a ton of different products and bleaches and finally, have landed on a process that gets me the white-blonde look that I love. Keep in mind that I usually have someone help me with this process (my mom :)) so that I make sure to get all of my roots and the back of my head.

Disclaimer: I am not a professional! This is simply what works for me and my hair and how to bleach hair that works the best for me. Don’t sue me if all of your hair falls out.

How to Bleach Hair at Home

How to Bleach Hair at Home

Supplies Needed


Step 1: Preparing for Bleach

I like to bleach my hair on the second day after washing it. Not really sure why, but I find that dirty hair works better for bleaching and coloring. Always bleach hair when it is dry! Section off your hair into more manageable parts. Bleach will work faster and lighten quicker on your roots, because of the heat that comes off of your scalp.

Make sure to brush out your hair and get all of the knots and tangles out of your hair before bleaching your hair.

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Step 2: Mix It Up

Mixing up your bleach is a crucial step to making sure your hair turns out right. I like to use Volume 20 developer, which I get from Amazon. It’s not too expensive (usually about $10-15), and works well with the powder bleach.

How to Bleach Hair Mixing Bowl

After you find your favorite developer, you are ready to start measuring out your mixture. For every 1 part of powder bleach, use 2 parts developer. My favorite bleach to use is L’Oreal’s Quick Blue. It comes in a huge tub and lasts forever. This method is so much more economical than buying pre-packaged bleach box kits at the drugstore. Trust me! I used to use those.

L’Oreal Quick Blue can be bought on Amazon and is pretty powerful stuff. Make sure you are wearing gloves throughout the whole process (including mixing), so your hands don’t get burned. I like to mix my bleach up with the developer in a hair coloring bowl for easy application.

Step 3: Applying the Bleach

Once you’re ready to apply the bleach, make sure you wear a baggy T-Shirt that can get dirty, or lay down some towels around you. Anything the bleach lands on will most likely be ruined. Trust me…I’ve learned this the hard way.

How to Bleach Hair with L'Oreal Quick BlueApply the bleach from your mixing bowl with a hair coloring brush. Start painting your hair in small sections, starting at the tips of your hair and working the bleach upwards. Remember, your roots will lighten faster than any other part of your hair. Leave your roots for last if you can.

Tip: Make sure to get EVERY inch of your hair. If you miss even a small section, it will be incredibly noticeable. Focus on the nape of your neck and hairline to make sure no strand gets left behind.

The Waiting Game

I like to leave my bleach on for about 30-35 minutes. It honestly depends on how dark your hair is to begin with, but you will know it’s time to rinse the bleach out when your hair appears to be a pale yellow color. Check to make sure that your hair is all relatively the same color (roots vs. ends.)

Step 4: Rinse (and Possibly Repeat)

After waiting for your bleach to fully lighten, hop in the shower and rinse out the bleach from your head. I like to use a color-safe shampoo during this step. After rinsing out, let your hair air dry and check to see if it is the desired pale-yellow color. If not, you may need to repeat the bleaching process and do it all over again. Usually, people starting with dark brown or black hair will have to repeat the bleaching process at least 2 times.

Step 5: Tone Your Hair

How to Bleach Hair with Manic Panic Toner

After reaching a pale yellow color, your hair is ready to be toned. Toning is the crucial and most important step in getting white-blonde hair. The process of toning your hair helps to counteract the yellow and gold tones that the bleach brought out, and instead make them a more bright white color.

My favorite toner to use is actually a semi-permanent dye from Manic Panic. Don’t worry; it works well and is the perfect color to cancel out any golden colors. Mix your toner up using the same 1:2 ratio of dye to developer as described before. Apply the toner all over your hair and roots.

You won’t need to leave the toner on for as long as the bleach because it is, well, purple. Bleached hair takes very easily to dye because it has essentially just been stripped of all natural color in the bleaching process. I like to leave my toner on for 15-20 minutes.

Rinse out your toner and let your hair air dry again. Voila! You now have perfectly toned, white-blonde hair.


Have you ever learned how to bleach hair at home?

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I’m sharing 5 apps college students shouldn’t live without. All of these apps should be downloadable for Apple and Android products, but double check your phone’s application marketplace to see if it is available for you!

Let’s face it: we all love being on our phones. Whether it’s to kill time, increase productivity, message a friend, or something else altogether, we spend a lot of time per day staring at our screens. However, it’s not all bad! As a college student, I have found lots of cool and exciting apps that help me live smarter and become more motivated in my career and life in general. I’m an app junkie!

Opinion Outpost Banner

I would love to know in the comments section about what other applications you use to simplify and inspire your daily routine! What apps do you think college students shouldn’t live without? I am completely guilty of scrolling through the App Store at the wee hours of the morning in search of the next great app!

*This post also contains referral codes that you can use when using the apps to give you (and me!) great bonuses.*

Free Apps for College Students

5 Apps College Students Shouldn’t Live Without

1. Transit App

This app may be ideal for those of you college babes living in big cities, but if you have public transportation of any kind in your city…you need this app.

Transit App is my favorite application to use when tracking Chicago public transportation and trust me, I’ve tried pretty much every different app on the market. After finding Transit app, I’ve never gone back to any other or searched for a better alternative again. The app is free in the App Store and shows you upcoming departure times. The app currently covers more than 125 different cities worldwide.

Apps College Students Shouldn't Live Without Transit App

The design of the app is extremely minimal and easy to navigate. I use this app multiple times a day, especially in the wintertime when I don’t want to be waiting outside in the Chicago cold for 20 minutes for my train! I usually check Transit app when I wake up/am close to walking out the door, so I can know when the next train is coming. It’s seriously a lifesaver! Click here to get Transit. 

2. Uber

If you don’t have the Uber app yet, I’m not really sure what you are doing. This is probably the most essential app for college students. Nevertheless, I would rather you learn now than live the rest of your life without Uber 😉

Living on a college campus and tromping around the town without Uber can be rough sometimes. Even though I like to take public transportation or walk as much as possible, sometimes Uber is just a better choice. Especially late at night if I am coming home from a night out with my girlfriends and don’t think we should be walking home alone!

Apps College Students Shouldn't Live Without Uber

Contrary to popular belief, Uber isn’t very expensive. In larger cities, Uber offers the option to “pool” with other customers, which significantly lowers the cost of your Uber ride. I can usually get from point A to point B for just a few dollars via Uber.

Also, if you’re looking for a way to make some extra money, driving for Uber could be a great option! I actually know a few people in my personal life that drive for Uber and really enjoy it. (Looking for other ways to make money? Check out my post here.)

You can click here to download Uber and make sure to use my referral code “emma880” on your first ride!

3. Venmo

Venmo is another app that I use on pretty much a daily basis. Ever been at brunch with a friend and realize you forgot your wallet in last night’s jacket? No worries. Venmo allows you to easily send and receive money (linked to your bank account) securely.

Apps College Students Shouldn't Live Without Venmo

It seems like everyone in college uses Venmo because of its ease of use. My roommates and I pay each other for our bills + utilities via Venmo, and I pay my landlord with it, too. Seriously, if you don’t have Venmo by now…hop on it!

Click here to download Venmo. You can also access your Venmo account via the web if you prefer that!

4. Career Girl Daily

I’ve talked about Career Girl Daily before on the blog, (check out my post for the resources to use when you are feeling burnt out) but I seriously just can’t get enough of it. Career Girl Daily fills my daily fix for career motivation, and the articles they publish are always interesting and applicable to my own life.

You can read all of CGD’s articles online by visiting them here, but can also search for their app in the App Store. I personally love the app because I can quickly read and digest articles in between my classes or on the train when I’m trying to kill time.

Here are some CGD articles I love:

5. Ebates

Ebates is the hidden gem in this bunch. I LOVE using this app, and it helps me so much! Ebates helps you easily get cash back on the places that you already love to shop at. Besides being just a mobile app, Ebates is also a website and a Chrome extension.

Ebates

Saving with Ebates is so easy and the stores that they give cash back at is huge. Plus, the cash back amounts are BIG, not just pennies/cents. Right now I am currently saving up my Ebates earnings to get a PayPal cash out. Woohoo!

You can get started with Ebates by clicking here!


What are some of your favorite apps for college students? What, in your opinion, are the apps college students shouldn’t live without?

Pssst! If you liked this post + learned something new, I would love for you to share it with your friends. Sharing this post takes just a few seconds + helps with the growth of this blog. Click the blue social sharing buttons to the left or at the top of this page. Thank you!

*This post does contain referral links.*

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*This post does contain affiliate and referral links although all programs/websites mentioned are what I actually use to get more Pinterest followers!*

One thing necessary for getting all the perks of Pinterest is somewhat inevitable: followers. It seems like everyone is constantly looking for ways to get more Pinterest followers. Understandably, because like many other social media networks, followers are an important part of the game. Without followers, it will be hard to get new eyeballs on your awesome content and blog.

Pinterest has been all the rage for bloggers lately. It seems like the answer to every blog-related question can be answered with one word: Pinterest. Looking for new blog traffic? Pinterest. Ideas for blog posts? Check Pinterest. You get the point.

Lucky for you, I consider myself somewhat a Pinterest-hacker and have spent a lot of time researching the best ways to get more Pinterest followers. Some of my methods are unconventional, but I promise you…they work! I currently have over 32,000 Pinterest followers and I gain hundreds more on a weekly basis. Don’t believe me? See for yourself!

Get More Pinterest Followers Graph

See that blue line? That’s how fast my Pinterest account is gaining new followers. The gray line is a trendline that shows the average account growth for other accounts with a similar audience as mine. My Pinterest account has been growing exponentially ever since I implemented a few easy new strategies. I’m now ready to share all of my secrets with you for how to get more Pinterest followers!

Exciting news! I am now offering PINTEREST MANAGEMENT services to entrepreneurs, bloggers, and start-ups! This means that you can now hire me to manage + grow your Pinterest account. I promise to give you more website traffic + leads, all while growing your Pinterest following. Interested? Click here.

How to Get Pinterest Followers

4 Ways to Get More Pinterest Followers

Make a Quote Board

This may sound odd, but I promise you it works. Making a board specifically for motivational/inspirational quotes will get your account a lot of traction. I’ve found that some of my most popular pins are actually other people’s quotes. Why is this so?

A lot of people use Pinterest as a source for inspiration and cool images. This means that people are constantly searching for quotes or affirmations, and let’s be honest…you can spend a lot of time falling down the rabbit hole of Pinterest quotes. I personally love using Pinterest as a way to find quotes, and so I totally understand why quote boards perform so well.

Get More Pinterest Followers Quote Board

In order to copy my results, create a “Quotes” or “Motivational Sayings” board for your account. Then, simply pin images that you like and speak to you! It’s that easy. Over time, you will see that your quotes get a lot of traffic and attention. More traffic = more repins = more followers!

Use + Create Bold Images

Creating beautiful graphics and pins for your account is essential because of how competitive Pinterest can be. Think about it…if you are searching for a topic and 200 results (or pins) come up, aren’t you more inclined to pick on a pin that looks bright, happy and professional rather than a small, fuzzy or boring look one?

I like to create a sort of rough template for my pins so that they all resemble each other in some ways and match my EmmaLenhart.com brand. Canva is the program I use to make all of my pins because it’s free and super easy to use! I also love all of the clip art and fonts they have available for use.

Other people also use programs such as Photoshop or Picmonkey to make their pins. Try out your options and settle on a program that works well for you!

A/B Testing

The Pinterest algorithm doesn’t like having duplicate source pins for the same content (example: making 5 different graphics for one blog post and pinning them all.) However, you can test out which graphics perform best on Pinterest by using short-term A/B testing. In order to do this, make 2 or 3 different variations of your graphic, and pin them to your account. After a week, check back in and see which graphic performed the best (got the most repins/comments.) After finding out the best graphic for a specific blog post, delete the other pin variations and you will see your repins skyrocket!

Join Many Group Boards

If you learn nothing else from this blog post, please learn this: JOIN GROUP BOARDS.

Group boards are the key to success on Pinterest. If you look at my Pinterest profile it’s almost ridiculous because of how many group boards I am a part of. But I’ve never found anything negative come from joining group boards, so I keep doing it!

My favorite way to find group boards is by using PinGroupie. PinGroupie lets you easily search for group boards to become a part of, and sorts them based on how many followers they have/etc.

In the example below, I searched for group boards having to do with blogging. Check out how many awesome results came up!

Get More Pinterest Followers PinGroupie

BoardBooster (a service we will discuss later in this post) also has a component of it that finds the best group boards for you to join based on your content category. In the example below, I searched for group boards to join about travel.

Get More Pinterest Followers Group Boards

Another free way to find group boards is to visit other bloggers in your niche and see what group boards they are a part of by looking on their Pinterest profile. These group boards are a great place to contribute to because your “competition” is doing it already!

Gaining Access to Group Boards

Joining group boards is usually pretty easy, and the instructions for joining can be found in the board description. Most times, you only have to email the admin of the group board to ask for permission to join and then you will receive an invitation to collaborate!

Tip: Share your best blog content and pins to group boards on a regular basis to get new traffic and readership. Group boards combine followers from a lot of different places and people, so you have a higher chance of reaching new followers and people via group boards!

Schedule + Loop Your Pins

If you want to have a stellar account and get more Pinterest followers, you have to schedule and loop your pins. It’s as simple as that and very necessary. My favorite program to use for scheduling and looping my pins is BoardBooster.

BoardBooster is also super helpful for keeping track of your account’s growth and for analyzing what is working best. Free tools that come with your BoardBooster subscription include a “Board Performance” report, a “Best Time to Pin” report, and more.

Scheduler

BoardBooster is a service that starts at just $5 per month. After signing up for BoardBooster, you will be able to start scheduling pins to be sent out automatically. This is important for your Pinterest account because it will make it appear as though you are always on Pinterest, actively pinning new things. When in reality, you aren’t and have just scheduled pins to be in your BoardBooster queue!

BoardBooster’s scheduler works by making a duplicate or second version of your already existing boards. When this happens, the duplicate board will become a “Secret” board that only you can see in your account. Having a secret board allows you to add pins to be scheduled and sent out through BoardBooster, without anyone else knowing!

BoardBooster also allows you to change the settings and times when your pins will be released and actively pinned. Right now, I have 56 pins being sent out by BoardBooster scheduler.

Are you ready to increase your blog traffic through Pinterest? Gain new followers? Find out how Emma Lenhart got 30,000 Pinterest followers to her account as a new blogger.

Looping

Looping is a feature that allows you to get the most out of the pins that you have already pinned to your boards/account. BoardBooster looping brings the pins from the bottom of your board and pins them back to the top of the board. Because of this, you get new people finding your pins and there is more than one chance for people to see your content.

Right now I have 32 total pins being looped on my account.

Are you ready to increase your blog traffic through Pinterest? Gain new followers? Find out how Emma Lenhart got 30,000 Pinterest followers to her account as a new blogger.

If you’re not ready to start paying for BoardBooster (which I highly recommend, as it has skyrocketed my followers), try out the FREE trial by clicking here

Get Help!

Not ready to commit time to growing your Pinterest account? No worries!

I am a Pinterest specialist and offer my services to help people like YOU grow their Pinterest following, leads, and conversions! Learn more about my services HERE. 


What are your favorite ways to get more Pinterest followers? Have you had any luck with the strategies I mentioned above?

Pssst! If you liked this post + learned something new, I would love for you to share it with your friends. Sharing this post takes just a few seconds + helps with the growth of this blog. Click the blue social sharing buttons to the left or at the top of this page. Thank you!

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Below I have come up with four easy ways to save money in college that I think are completely do-able and realistic for anyone in college. I truly think that if you are at least mindful about the money you’re spending, you’ll be better off and at least not “surprised” as to where all your finances went.

There’s no doubt that college is extremely expensive. Besides paying tuition, you also have to keep in mind the dozens of other expenses that add up fast, like room and board, meal plans, textbooks, etc. However, college can also be a great time to start getting ahead on your finances and working to save money for your future.

If you’re looking for ways to make money in college, I have a great blog post all about it which you can read by clicking here. Let’s vow to be intentional spenders and smart savers when it comes to money and getting through college!

Save Money in College

5 Easy Ways to Save Money in College

1. Rent Your Textbooks

Textbooks are one of the most expensive things you have to deal with in college. Unfortunately, you cannot avoid having to get textbooks for some classes as some professors teach strictly from the book. However, I would recommend asking other people who have taken the class before you if the book is necessary for the class. Or, check www.ratemyprofessors.com and read other student reviews to see if the professor uses the textbook for the class.

If you absolutely must get the textbook, always RENT instead of buy! College bookstores allow you to rent textbooks for the term instead of buying the book. This is extremely helpful since most textbooks are somewhat obscure and can only really be used in a classroom setting. No sense buying a textbook you are only going to use for a semester and then never look at again.

If you need to buy a book or novel (sometimes needed for English classes), check eBay or Amazon for used versions of the book instead of going to your college bookstore or Barnes & Noble and paying full-price for a brand new copy. Renting your textbooks or buying a used version is a super great way to save money in college, and has worked for me very well.

Renting your textbooks or buying a used verison is a super great way to save money in college, and has worked for me very well.

2. Use Your Meal Plan

College meal plans are very expensive and I’ve known some people that don’t use up their money before the year is over. It depends on which school you attend, but some meal plans don’t roll over to the next year if there is a remaining balance. This means that any money or “swipes” you don’t use from your plan automatically disappears and goes back to the school.

Using your meal plan to the full extent may seem bothersome and the food may get old, but it’s worth it to eat your meals at school if you already have a meal plan. Also, make sure to check and see if your school offers different dollar amount meal plan levels. You could be paying for the highest meal plan when you really may only need/want a smaller one to grab a snack on campus every now and then.

Another tip to use your meal plan and save money is to shop for small, household items at your school. Most universities have a small market or convenience store that you can use your meal plan balance at. While the items there are usually over-priced, it still makes sense to use your meal plan balance for things like toothbrushes and cleaning supplies rather than going to a convenience store like Walgreens/Target.

3. Make a Budget

Budget is such a daunting word. Never in my life have I looked forward to budgeting my money or making a plan with it, but it is needed if you want to save money fast. Luckily, there are tons of iPhone and Android apps available to help make budgeting less stressful.

Goodbudget is an app that tracks your expenses and helps you stay on track with your budget. The app is free and tracks how you are doing with your money throughout the month. The app also allows you to share your budget with other people through syncing, which can be helpful if your parents want to track how you are spending your money at school.

Find out 5 ways to save money in college. The Emma Lenhart blog has tons of tips and tricks to save money on college expenses and textbooks.

4. Have a Side Hustle

Saving money in college is only an option if you have some money coming in. Looking for ways to make money fast in college? Check out this post, where I talk about ways to make money as a college student.

If you don’t think you have time for a full-on job, or are a freshman and still getting adjusted to the college lifestyle, consider having a “side hustle.” A side hustle is something you can do in your free time and usually doesn’t require having a set schedule or even a boss managing you.

My favorite side hustles are all online and have given me tons of flexibility with my money in the past. A great side hustle to do in college is taking online surveys, where marketers pay you to give your input about various products and services. The best website I’ve found for doing this is Opinion Outpost. The website is completely legitimate and both my sister and I have used it in the past (and even now) to make extra money. The surveys are interesting and the payout can be in gift cards or even on PayPal. Score!

Click here to register for Opinion Outpost and start earning money today. It’s extremely easy to sign up and you can start earning cash now!

5. Shop Around for Housing Options

When people think about housing options at college, they normally picture themselves living in a dorm or on-campus housing for the majority of the time. However, this is not always the cheapest way to go and looking for housing off-campus can sometimes help you save money.

In fact, at the university I attend, living off campus is significantly less expensive. Sure, I have to pay my own utilities and have to deal with having a landlord, but I also get great benefits like not having an RA or quiet-time hour restrictions.

When looking for housing, make sure to do your research and compare the cost of living on-campus in a dorm or apartment and living off-campus. Living off-campus isn’t as scary or bothersome as it sounds and can be just a short walk to class. Call realtors that represent apartments/housing around your school and inquire about the monthly rates and rent. Then do the same and research what it costs to live on-campus or in a dorm at your school. Don’t make the mistake of always assuming that living in a dorm is better or cheaper!


How do you save money in college? Do you have any tips for how to save money in college that I didn’t mention?

Pssst! If you liked this post + learned something new, I would love for you to share it with your friends. Sharing this post takes just a few seconds + helps with the growth of this blog. Click the blue social sharing buttons to the left or at the top of this page. Thank you!

*This post does contain affiliate links.*

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