A three-year-old girl’s blonde hair has been permanently discoloured after the dye from her hair bobble leaked and turned it bright blue.
Scarlett Belfield had been playing outside her home with friends when the tie got wet and leaked – leaving unsightly streaks of blue in her pretty blonde locks.
Dismayed mum Charlotte Hollinshead, 22, tried washing Scarlett’s hair 15 time following the incident last Friday but a variety of bizarre fixes – including using washing-up liquid – have failed to work.
The mum-of-two then asked a hairdresser for advice, who told her the stubborn dye can only be removed by bleaching her daughter’ locks – or chopping them off.
Furious Charlotte said she contacted high street discount store B&M Bargains – only for staff to tell her that the hair clips weren’t suitable for blondes.
They offered her a refund on the £1.29 bumper pack of hair accessories but refused to apologise or cover the cost of correcting the mistake.
Housewife Charlotte, from Stoke-on-Trent, Staffs., revealed she is now demanding compensation from the store.
She said: “Scarlett had been playing in the snow with her dad when she came back in with blue in her hair.
“The dye had completely run out of the bobble and in to her hair, it’s stained it blue and nothing will make it come out.
“I have tried everything and even contacted a hairdressers’ for advice.
“They said that I’d either have to bleach Scarlett’s hair or cut it.
“There’s no way I’m going to bleach a three-year-old girl’s hair so the only thing is to have it cut.
“It would have to be cut very short to get rid of all the blue, so we might wait a bit which means she’s stuck with it for now.
“I called the store to complain but they were really snotty with me – one woman even said ‘what do you want me to do about it?’
“I couldn’t believe my ears when they told me the bobbles weren’t made for blonde children – how would I have known that?
“If there’s that big a risk they should put a warning on the label.
“It is absolutely ridiculous that a child of that age should get their hair coloured because of a hair tie.”
Embarrassingly, parents and teachers at Scarlett’s nursery group even thought Charlotte had put the blue streaks in her hair on purpose.
Scarlett’s dad Nathan Belfield, 22, a bricklayer, added: “We had just been out in the street enjoying the snow when it happened.
“The dye was very dark blue at first and we are trying to get her hair back to normal.
“We are angry with what the shop said and we don’t want to have to dye a three-year-old’s hair, it’s just not right.
“I have had teachers at school asking me why her hair is a different colour and I’ve had to explain we haven’t done it.
“It is embarrassing to explain and we would like an apology from the shop and more than a refund.”
B&M Bargains yesterday offered mum Charlotte a £75 voucher as compensation.
Michael Deans, central operations manager for B&M, said: “We have contacted the shopper and agreed suitable compensation to Mrs Hollinshead’s satisfaction.
“We have investigated the complaint with our supplier.”