Ok, we admit it, we are addicted – there are members of the HCC team who have dyed their locks so often that they can’t remember their natural color. Actually there are some members of the team who have dyed their locks so often they can’t remember their current color (quick mirror check) but we all had to start somewhere, and today’s advice is for those adventurous souls pondering a change in hair color for the very first time.
There are a few things to consider before embarking on your technicolor journey, sure you are keen to jump in but a bit of thought now can save you money, time, and perhaps even a lot of embarrassment in the long run. As ever, if you’ve got some time on your hands we recommend you start your hair color journey with our Hair Coloring Basics, and our Hair Dye Guide.
For those of you on the go, before you sit in the chair or stroll through the grocery aisle, here are the questions you should ask yourself:
Who is going to do the deed?
There are pros and cons to both home coloring and salon coloring. If you simply want to match the color on your head to the color on the box, home coloring products may work for you. Basic blending and coloring is certainly possible at home and can save you a considerable amount of time and cash, but don’t veer too far from your natural shade or you can end up paying a lot of money to have a stylist repair your mistake. However, if you are the creative type, seeking cutting-edge highlights, panels, and unique formulations, do not, I repeat, do not try this at home!
Are you going to be natural or a bit more daring?
Selecting a shade no more than three tones away from your natural color will really pay dividends when it comes to maintenance, for example if your hair is naturally medium brown and you select a medium to dark brown dye the regrowth will not scream its presence and you will have more time between applications. However if you are an espresso brunette and opt for platinum blonde, be prepared to spend a king
’s ransom and a whole lot of time on keeping up your color. In this case, discuss maintenance and budget with your stylist before you get the color on your head!
What type of hair do you have?
The quality of your hair fabric will determine the outcome of your color. If you have a strong, resilient fabric, you can do more to your hair, the color will stay vital and vibrant longer, and you will be less of a slave to your color care. However, if the hair on your head resembles the hair on your arms, you have a smaller margin for error. Fine hair does indeed benefit from the “swelling” action color can give, but it cannot go through as many applications or technical overlapping and may restrict your fashion frolics. Make sure your discussion with your stylist involves the condition and products required to maintain the lustre and health of your hair. This leads us to number four…
Don’t forget to consider aftercare!
Quality products are essential when caring for chemically treated hair. It is not so much the brand but the ingredients, although higher quality brands tend to use higher quality ingredients. Some shampoos have the same components as the product you use on your carpet, whereas others are so gentle you could practically drink them. It is also worth looking beyond shampoos and conditioners to other specialist products including deep conditioning treatments, glossers, sealers, express refreshers, and many salon services that can increase the longevity and cosmetic integrity of your color. You should also think about styling aids as these can inhibit or benefit your color as well.
Make sure the color works for you!
When selecting a shade, you may want to consider what colors are in your makeup palette as well as your wardrobe. You might choose a color to compliment your existing preferences, or perhaps this is your opportunity to change things up a bit. Either way it is wise to have a plan so you do not have to toss hundreds of dollars worth of cosmetics and push your favorite clothes to the back of the closet! If you aren’t sure, strategically placed highlights can create a peek-a-boo effect that allows your colors’ appearance to change as often as your moods. You should also think about your lifestyle, how much time and money do you have to devote to the maintenance of your color? Finally we would always recommend that you tailor your color to your cut for maximum enjoyment!