Dare to Be Different: 7 Important Things to Know About Coloring Your Own Hair
August 29th, 2019 by Akbar Mohammad
Most people will spend about $80 on a good salon hair coloring treatment, even an upwards of $200 or $300 for special treatment.
So if you’re considering cutting the costs and doing your hair color yourself, you’re not alone. It can’t be that hard, right?
Coloring your own hair at home can be trickier than it may seem. There’s a lot of skill, wisdom and knowledge behind stunning hair.
Here’s what you need to know about DIY hair coloring.
Salon Versus at Home Hair Coloring, Which Should You Choose?
Hair coloring is one of those instances where the phrase “you get what you pay for” couldn’t ring truer. If you’re not too invested in your hair and are comfortable with a basic flat color, an at-home coloring option would be cost-effective.
However, if you want a dimensional hair color, a hair trend like balayage or a custom hair tone to match your skin, a salon coloring will likely give you results you’ll be happy with. If you can only afford to go to the soln every few months, there are a lot of different temporary fixes like WOW root cover-up and L’Oréal’s Magic Root cover-up that can keep you looking fresh between colors. There are some great insights about salon versus at-home hair coloring in this article by Inscape Beauty Salon.
Choosing Your Own Hair Color
It’s important to know that without a cosmetology license, you won’t have the same kind of access to hair products as a professional will. The reality is that professional stylists have access to better quality products. Your first step is to decide if you want to buy color from a box or to buy supplies separately and mix it yourself from a beauty supply store.
Color from a box is designed to be user-friendly. The colors are fairly true to the label and all the “work” for mixing product is pretty much done. A person usually will just have to mix one or two tubes of a product in a bottle, and it’s ready for application.
Color from a beauty supply store like Sally’s Beauty Supply will require a little more effort, but it offers more opportunities for customization and error if you’re not sure what you’re doing. For example, you’ll have more color options, the ability to mix colors and also apply products like toner that adds dimensions to hair color. If you want to learn about hair color, are a creative person and are OK with making a few mistakes along the way, this option would work.
Selecting the right color can be tricky too. Understand that all hair colors don’t look great on everyone. Because a hair color looks good on a celebrity, doesn’t mean it will look good on you. One simple hair hack is to not get marries to a specific color. Know your skin tone and be open to adjusting the shade or tone of a color you want, to better match you.
Working with the Right Brands
If you love having great hair (who doesn’t), you’ve likely been on a quest or two to find the perfect hair product. On your journey, you’ve likely discovered that not all products are created equal, not by a long shot, and the same goes for hair coloring products.
The “right” brand varies from person-to-person. Everyone’s hair and skin react differently to different formulas and chemicals. Also, if you’re looking for a natural, non-toxic or cruelty-free option, your options and preferences will be different than someone who doesn’t have those considerations.
A few of of the best hair dye brands on the internet are Herbatint, Punky Colour, Manic Panic and Overtone. Sally’s brand Ion is the hobbyist hair stylist’s product of choice. But do your research, get insights from credible influencers and media and Redditt. It might take you a few trials before you find “the one” for you.
Having the Right Supplies and Set-Up for Coloring Your Hair
Whichever route you choose for hair color brands and colors, know that the color application process can get messy. Hair color can stain bathtubs, sinks, clothing, rugs, and towels. So it’s important to have your space prepped adequately before you even open a bottle.
If you buy hair color from a box, it will likely come with a set of plastic gloves and all the bottles and equipment you need to mix and apply your hair color. Buying everything separately will require you to purchase gloves, mixing bowls, application brushes, and bottles separately. However, all of these items are reusable and can be found at the beauty supply store.
If the weather permits, and you have a portable mirror, the yard space, and a hose, it could be safer to color your hair outside. Hair dye can stain sinks, floors, bathtubs, clothing, and linens, so if you don’t have a technique down or this is your first time dying your hair, you want to to be cautious of this.
If you choose to dye your hair indoors, it’s recommended to wear clothes that you would use for cleaning or chores, that you wouldn’t mind ruining. Hair dye can drip from your hair to your shoulders, back, feet and the floor, so if you’re especially uncoordinated, you might even consider putting down a painting tarp and wearing old socks, so you don’t track dye from your feet around the house.
When you’re rinsing your hair, the key is to keep the water running so that excess hair color that runs does not set. Removing hair color from bathtubs is very difficult. Also keep in mind that your hair color, after rinsing, may still bleed slightly onto the towels you use, your pillowcase and anything else it comes into contact with.
Having the Right Technique for Coloring Your Own Hair
A lot of people attribute not getting the results they want from beauty products as a failure of the brand they chose and the formula they use. While this is true at times, a lot of faults is actually due to lack of technique. This is as true for applying make-up as it is for applying hair color.
The technique comes from knowledge and experience. This is why certain hair procedures like highlights cost more to get done than a flat color. It’s a key reason why “good” salons run by actual stylists charge more than Great Clips. The technique of getting your hair to pull off a look is what you pay for.
When you’re coloring your own hair at home, invest in some large hair clips to section your hair with. Sectioning is an important technique for ensuring you cover all of your hair, and don’t miss any pieces. Applying hair color with a brush, like you would apply to paint to the wall is a hair hack that helps evenly spread the color.
Consider applying vaseline or another thick emollient along with your hairline on your face and neck, to avoid the color staining your skin. If you have a friend who can help, they can check you for missed sections. But if you’re doing it alone, have a handheld mirror ready to use to be able to check the back of your head with.
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