Coloring your hair at home can be tricky but it doesn’t have to end in disaster (unless you try Ursula Goff’s designs, then you may be in for a shock). Whether you decide to go permanent, semi-permanent, highlights, or your full head, there are things you can do before, during, and after to save yourself time, money, and frustration. Next time you decide to skip the salon and use a home hair dye, keep these tips in mind for better, longer-lasting results.
5.) Correct Mistakes
If you lose track of time and accidentally leave the color in too long or it turns out to be too dark or concentrated, you can try wash your hair out with dishwashing soap two to three times to lighten color. Use it like shampoo and rinse out completely. If you are going lighter and leave the dye on for too long and end up with orange roots, wait a day or two for the color to oxidise, then treat your roots with a shade darker than you originally bought. However, if your home hair dye is darker than your natural hair and your roots are now VERY dark, you will need to dye the rest of your hair to match or visit a salon for help. If you get any home hair dye on your skin, to remove the color you should apply a little clarifying shampoo (e.g. Klorane Clarifying Shampoo) on the end of a damp towel and rub it on your skin.
4.) Make the Color Last
After you’ve followed all the instructions on the box exactly, rinse out the color with cool water instead of hot so that the color lasts longer. If your kit contains a conditioner, use that, otherwise, apply another type conditioner, preferably one that’s meant for color-treated hair. You could also use a leave-in conditioner. Just make sure you wear a hat when you’re in the sun for a long time or use a hair sunscreen. Avoid over-styling with curlers and straighteners to keep the hair healthy and the color bright. You should also try to skip shampooing your hair every day; try every other day and use dry shampoo if your hair looks greasy. The chemicals in home hair dye can be quite drying so use a deep conditioner once a week to keep your hair looking soft and healthy.
3.) Create an At-home Salon
Using home hair dye can be a messy process, so you’ll need to set up an area you don’t mind if dye gets dropped. Lay down a drop cloth or old sheet or towel on the ground and cover the countertop with newspaper. You’ll also want to wear an old T-shirt or smock in case you drip any hair dye on your clothing. Also, keep a designated hair dying towel close by. Remember to apply petroleum jelly or moisturizer along your hairline so the dye doesn’t spread onto your forehead. If you happen to get hair dye on your sink or bath, use nail polish remover (with acetone), rubbing alcohol, hydrogen peroxide, diluted bleach or WD-40.
2.) Pick the Right Dye
When deciding what color to dye your hair, most stylists recommend only going two shades darker or lighter than your natural hair color. Because home hair dyes are pre-mixed, they’re not as tailor-made as dyes mixed in the salon and can turn out differently than you expect. You should also stick to softer colors as opposed to bright, edgy colors to ensure the color doesn’t turn brassy. Lastly, to choose between permanent and semi-permanent, decide whether you want a subtle or dramatic change. Semi-permanent is more subtle and washes out within 20 washes. Permanent is more dramatic and is better for covering grays.
Yo u should also consider the formula of the dye. Foam dyes (e.g. John Frieda’s Precision Foam Color) are the better option for people with sensitive skin as foam is unlikely to drip onto the face or hairline. For those with thick or curly hair, gel or liquid formulas (e.g. L’Oreal Excellence Creme) are the better option as they provide full coverage and distribute thoroughly throughout the hair.
1.) Prepare with a Conditioner
Two weeks before you plan on coloring your hair, prep your hair with a deep conditioning treatment to help you hair keep the color better. You could even use a protein treatment a few weeks prior, to help to replace the strength in your hair. Or if your decision is a bit more spur-of-the-moment, try a hydrating mask one day prior. The more moisturized each strand is, the healthier it is and more ready to hold the color. Don’t worry about washing your hair right before the coloring, though, the dye will penetrate through the natural oils and hair products. Also, think about getting a trim if your hair is damaged and has split ends.
With these tips, you’re very likely to fool your friends into thinking you paid top dollar for professional coloring services. Treat your newly colored hair with care and the right products, and you’ll have salon-style color that will last without losing shine or brightness. Just remember that practice makes perfect, so each touch-up should get easier. And if you do mess up, you can always head to the salon for a fix up.
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