I get emails every day asking for help with hair color. Some of the problems can be solved with just a bit of adjustment others need professional help. The following are areas to watch for whether you go to a professional or do it yourself.
Caution: during this economical change we are all going through. If you have never colored your hair yourself before DON’T START NOW until you have done some research.
The Truth about Hair Color Chemicals is that when they are placed on the hair they interchange with the hair color molecules in your hair shaft. If your hair has been colored before this interaction is quite different than if you have natural hair that has never been colored before.
So when you buy the box and look at the photo on the front it will probably not come out that way. You have to have a formula, and the formula becomes more difficult with other chemicals that have been used on the hair.
When you start to color the first time it is best to only use shades within your own present color range…if you go darker I know you won’t like it and if you go lighter you will have lighter roots and darker ends…I have many questions about this come into my inbox every week.
It really is best to see a professional the first time if you don’t have a clue about hair color. If you don’t have the money choose a semi-permanent product because it fades out on tone with 6-8 shampoos. This along with the following tips will help to keep the age out of your hair color.
If you use a shade that is too light and your hair is too dark, your hair will turn brassy. You need professional advice for this change. Take photos of the hair color and don’t insist on going too light if you have dark hair or else you are looking at five years on your age if you do.
Blondes that are born that way can stay that way. If you are darker (not dark brown or black) lighten your hair first then add highlights to soften the overall look. For this process you will also need to have a low-volume semi-permanent colorant over the highlights to get a great finish.
For blondes to look young, use high lift tints and only use very low volumes (5-10) developers for highlighting products. A good professional will know what to do. At home only use shades that are close to your present shade.
If you use darker shades of blonde than your natural shade or than your tinted hair color, your hair will be too dark. Most blondes don’t like to be dark and more often than not they hate it and will find it very difficult to remove.
Stay near your natural shade, you will look younger, and save the money of the possibility of having to remove the deeper shade that will age you if you have always been a natural blonde.
Trouble: I have just read an article about how you should overlap when you’re applying hair color to the roots for your re-growth if you color at home. I say if you do overlap the formula you could end up with either an orange band or a dark band where the last re-touch ended.
If you have trouble with color applications place cotton between the parts and then lay the hair over it so the color will not seep into the previously tinted hair.
Light Golden Red-Blondes
Occasionally when I have a moment I watch “Without a Trace” with the actress Poppy Montgomery. First, she is such a beautiful woman and her hair has always looked great being a pretty blonde, but now she has added just a touch of golden-red and it is fabulous.
She looks better than ever if that’s possible. If you are blonde and need a change this is such a great way to make a small change without really going deeper. And if you end up not liking it you can have it adjusted and go back to a light golden blonde.
This type of process is easily done with light reddish-gold lowlights woven over blonde hair. This can also be done with dark golden blonde or very light brown lowlights. Just make sure you keep the weaving small so it will blend into the hair and you won’t see big wide stripes, this won’t look natural.
You can also soften your blonde hair color with a hair color refresher just to add a bit of color in either soft red or honey tones. This is generally done just before the final rinse. See my product coloursplash! this semi-permanent hair color refresher can be used anytime you shampoo your hair.
It is easy to use and it will save your hair color and your budget. In fact this product will help your hair color last two to three weeks longer. If you still have your natural hair color you can also use this product and you won’t see a line when your hair grows out. Simply shampoo it in. Easy!
Base Plus Highlights
This is my most favorite way to color hair. Among my outstanding clients one is my young friend Kelly Rutherford the beautiful actress in the series “Gossip Girl.” You may have seen her also on the cover and in the layout of a recent Vive Fashion Magazine.
Her hair is as stunning as she is. I do her base shade just between a dark blonde and light natural brown. Then I use a very low volume developer in a Balayge formula to add the highlights. What I love about this formula is that it has an overall natural look. On camera the look is real with the natural elegance of her acting.
(The Balayge process is simply a weaving technique where we use a small brush and paint in tiny strands of a lightening agent. It is then placed under lamps to process.)
When you use the Balayge method of highlighting hair you can get very close to the scalp and take very fine strands that appear as close to natural as any hair color process can. Often if you prefer a lighter hairline and just a blending throughout the rest of your hair, it is easily achieved with this method. The hair still grows out and you will see the roots when they grow. But, there is a much better blending of the base and hair strands.
Another point when using base shades with highlights (foils or Balayge.) I use a process for the base that I call a “smudge.” This process is only left on the roots for 3-5 minutes then rinsed out before the highlights are placed over the base.
This can be done on every shade of hair but it is most effective on hair that is a bit drab and you don’t want to see too much orange in the base. This process will just lift the base a bit to give it shine. Some hair colorists aren’t clear about this process, so make sure you have a good conversation before they start with the service.
Also for any hair color change you will need to adjust your makeup so the new shade will look real. Women forget this and often the hair looks older with the old makeup.
If you want to see how you look just go over to the department store and have your makeup done by the leading brands you always read about in the fashion magazines. Bobby Brown or Stella always gives free advice about makeup.
At the end of the makeup session if you’re short on cash …simply say you’ll come back to purchase. Or maybe buy a lip pencil, and don’t worry these people know not everyone has a ton of money to spend. During these sessions you can also keep your eye open for the new shades they use then go to the drugstore or beauty supply store and buy them at a less expensive price.
OH! Don’t forget to have a new hairstyle with your new hair color.
Don’t go red just because your girlfriend went red! The same red that looks great on someone else may not look good on you…you are adding ten years to your age if you wear red hair and shouldn’t.
If you’re going to be red be sure your keep your hair appointments, as you know there is nothing worse than a faded redhead (well maybe there is.) When I worked with Marcia Cross‘s (Desperate Housewives) red hair she had her color done almost every three weeks so the color would stay even throughout the hair strand.
She did it with tints but a less expensive way is to simply use a hair color refresher in the same shade or a shade that blends with your base hair color. These are called glosses and hair glazes …coloursplash! hair color refresher has had great reports with faded hair color whether it is tinted or natural.
This product is real hair color and does not coat or go off tone, which is very important when match and blending with other shades of color. Most redheads need to be shampooed and dried before the color service. This will help keep the color even and the tone of the red better.
If you like red hair and are possibly now a red head you might be thinking you are starting to look a bit flat with your present shade. Try a golden-red with copper tones. This will add an overall lift to your hair and your skin tones.
Blue reds can age very quickly. You must also keep redheads, as with all chemically treated hair, in great condition. The moisture must be in the hair for the shine and overall gloss you need to show off your beautiful hair.
The wrong reds can add ten years to your age. And remember you must keep your makeup subtle and soft. Too much makeup is a disaster if you want to look less than your years…or the same but better.
Trouble: If your hair is light or the gray is starting to peep through start changing your formula by adding a bit of a natural or golden shade to your formula. Just add ½ ounce of these shades to balance out the pink that is in all reds. My promise you will cut down the pink root. If you still have trouble, go to the salon and get it corrected. (it won’t cost much) Don’t live with it…it is so aging to have hair color that is off tone.
Redheads should have their hair color done every 3-4 weeks. No later, to help with the fading. It will cost less if you keep your appointments because the color will not fade as fast.
You are the lucky ones. Just a few areas to keep your eye on, other than choosing the right shade of brown if you don’t want red or golden over tones.
Follow the tips below to see how easy it is to have the same shade as Angelina Jolie. The rule to follow so you won’t have too much gold or red showing with the finished results is simply not to use golden or red brown shades unless you want these shades to show in your final hair color.
If your hair is too dark and you want a lighter brown you will have these tones show up…so don’t go too light. Decide on a shade that is close to your natural shade of brown or just one shade deeper or lighter. Browns also fade but they are mostly known for the buildup of color on the ends of the hair strand.
The shade you use does not matter if the formula is over lapped on to the ends too often. All hair color formulas will build up if they are processed too long and overlapped. The color buildup is dark and heavy and the ends look dry and the hair unconditioned.
Treatments don’t help. This gives an aged and unconditioned look to the overall hair color. If you want to save money make sure you don’t overlap the color either at the scalp or on the ends. The rule that all good professionals know is that color over color will only deepen the part that has been overlapped.
If you overlap the color at the scalp your hair will have a dark band if the same is done on the ends of hair they will look heavy and deeper than the rest of the hair. This is not good if you want to look your age and have healthy beautiful hair.
This gives the overall washed out flat look to your skin tones, which adds age. A good rule to follow is that if you are over 30 don’t go too dark even if you were a raven black beauty when you were “hot and thin” at 20 …it does not work for your age when you age. If you want to stay a bit deeper then add a few highlights to break it up. Keep the highlights in a soft rich brandy brown. You just might love it.
Sorry, but dark hair color is aging.
Trouble: If you have build up on the ends or at the scalp you must see a professional that knows what they’re doing. If you don’t it could cost much more than you are willing to pay and the problem will possibly get worse.
Ask a friend for recommendations and go for a consultation before booking the appointment. The process would be to simply lift some of the deeper shade from the scalp or the ends then have the color reapplied for a shorter length of time.
The ends really only need a bit of color when doing the all over application you just need to refresh the ends. If your color is not holding shampoo first then apply the application to the scalp first then bring it through the ends for the last 5 minutes. If you still have trouble (even at the salon) put a conditioner on the ends to help lessen the penetration of color.
When you get a good hair cut, time is on your side. When you get a lousy hair cut, you will see the poor results within a week. As some of you know, great haircuts, as with great hair color will last weeks and you notice that they still look good when you need to book for the next cut.
Always go to the best and possibly pay a bit more for the best. You will still see and feel the cut lying in place even 4 weeks after the cut. Cuts actually should be done about every 4 weeks but some will wait the 6 week time period just to save a bit.
If your hair is still performing wait 6 weeks. The way a cut reacts is also often connected with how often you do your color …because as most of us know our hair performs much better if we have color on the roots. The texture helps our hairstyle perform better.
When I let my hair color go even one more week my hair starts to look oily. Some of you might think this is happening because you are using too much conditioner. Nope! It’s happening because the texture of your natural hair is weaker than the tinted part.
When you have a re-growth of ½ inch your hair will look flat and oily. If you don’t have the budget to get it cut for another two weeks use less conditioner or just use on the end for a moment. And shampoo at least every other day. I shampoo every day when I want to wait an extra week or so. My hair behaves better when it is clean. It doesn’t just plop down on my head.
Trouble: Finding the time and money could be a big problem with the economy we’re in, so I am sneaking this in …you can trim your own hair, but you must be very careful …and don’t say I said you could cut your own hair like a professional.
This is how you do it. First you will need some good scissors. Get them at the beauty supply store. Don’t buy the most expensive. Now to the trimming (notice I didn’t say cutting) if your bangs are too long you can comb the hair forward over your eyes and look through them and take the scissors and trim a tiny bit off the tips.
This can be done either dry or wet. NOW don’t cut too much or you will kill me for telling you to buy the scissors…just a bit. Then to the nape area if you hair is a bit too long in this area just take a mirror and turn around and look in the bathroom mirror and take those scissors and trim about 1/8 of an inch off the bottom of your hair. Always remember this: you can always go back and trim a tiny bit more.
You will be very surprised to see that just a touch of hair off the tips will help your hair look great. The truth is that most cutters would rather have you trim a bit than have you go to someone else that gives you a total new style that you look awful in, or something that takes months to grow out because they cut it too short.
Okay…I know most of you don’t condition your color treated hair enough. Most women I know say “Oh, I do a conditioner once in a while.” This is just not good enough. Your hair needs moisture which conditioning treatments give it so it will look shinny and pretty.
When you have chemicals on your hair you need to use a good treatment at least once a week. These can be bought in the beauty supply store so they won’t cost you a fortune. Or you can buy them online using the websites below.
You don’t have to use a lot, just put about a teaspoon over towel dried hair. (Note: if your hair is long then use more product) If you can, as I have said before, leave it in for a period of time while you do something else.
And no your hair will not be oily, just rinse it well. Also, disregard of what anyone has said, clean hair is healthy hair. If you are not shampooing everyday please shampoo every other day. Or just simply rinse your hair and blow it dry.
This will get all the styling products out and let your hair follicles breath. This will also help keep your hair from thinning as it ages. Styling products coat the hair and suffocate the roots of the hair shaft so you must keep it fresh.
One last thing…
If your hair has shine the color will reflect better and you won’t notice that you are long overdue for the hair cut you are still saving for. This is just another way to look great on a budget. In fact the cost of a good treatment in the beauty supply store is about $12.00(or less) for a big jar.
If you use just a tablespoon once a week you could easily get two month out of one jar. And don’t forget to towel dry your hair so the treatment will penetrate better. Also remember that all hair care shampoos and treatments should be manufactured by the same company…this is how they were formulated.
Up Keep and Quick Fixes: Now this might be a bit tricky for some of you if your hair color is a lot lighter or darker than your natural shade. If there is a great degree of change between the two you will still see roots in 3-4 weeks or sooner.
The gray roots still grow disregard of the economy. Gray Roots will be the most troublesome of all hair colors. Gray Roots If you decide to use a product like Gray Diffuser (real hair color) that blends in the gray to help you extend your hair color appointments you won’t have to worry (this product last through 6-8 shampoos.)
If you choose not to go with this product you will need to use something from the beauty supply or drugstore. Some of these coat the hair so you will need to be careful not to get them on the scalp because they look fake.
Most must be used daily to coat the hair so the gray doesn’t show. Or if you do your own hair color at home you can use the permanent hair color roots products from the drugstore. Again you will need to use with caution because if you do overlap as said before you will have a dark line near your gray and your colorist will need to correct the problem, because it will be too difficult to attempt yourself.
This could cost more the next time you have a hair color service. When trying to do the roots in between keep it simple…just do the part and the hairline. Don’t try to do the whole head it will not look good.
Highlights and Base Color
This up keep is rather simple because all you need to do is not have the highlights every six weeks. Just have the base for two months and then get the total service the third month.
This will save you quite a lot of money and let you have a little left for the well needed hair cut or the treatment you are going to buy at the beauty supply. Or, lunch with a friend! Highlights: If you think your highlights are costing too much try getting just partial highlights then when you just can’t stand it anymore get the full head.
This will help cut the bill in half. Another way for the highlights to not show up too much when they grow out is to get them closer to your natural shade of hair. Or weave in both lowlights and highlights at the same time. This will give a more natural look and you won’t see the roots so fast.
Rather than having the service every two months get them every three months. You can save a good amount doing it this way. With all of these different processes you can also keep your hair looking beautiful by just using a color refresher in between the service.
All you want is to have healthy looking hair, it really doesn’t matter how long you wait in between services just so your hair looks good all the time. All you need to do is play it a bit safer when trying to save money on your personal services.
You can even buy your cosmetics at the drugstore or at the beauty supply. Believe me I know a lot of chemists and they always say more often than not that the products you purchase all have required quality control therefore the $100 bottle is not much better than the $25 bottle.
It is the skin it is put on that makes the difference with how it appears. Just like hair color, without moisture and proper care your hair will look uncared for.
This could be very costly if you’re trying to cut costs. Mixing perms and other relaxing chemicals with hair color can lead to big problems. Often even if you go to the best person the hair will be dry and frazzled.
Some of these products strip all the life from the hair if the wrong person does the service. All this being said there is the Brazilian Keratin Treatment that does seem to work rather well with base hair color. I will still say I don’t like it over highlight or bleached hair even if your hair is fuzzy curly.
These treatments cost near $500 or so for the service. Bottom line –if you’re on a budget don’t even start here because the upkeep it very costly. Everyone that uses these must use a very high priced treatment until it grows out…normal treatments will not give hair with these type of chemicals enough moisture to help it shine, and look healthy.
I am adding this because I don’t think women look at these when they want to change their hair color or hair style. Fashion magazines will give you ideas and help you decide on your style and your hair color change.
For those of you that are a bit short and can’t add extras to your budget you can always look at these while you wait in the checkout line. Also most fashion magazines are posted on the Internet every month. After your day is over you can take a moment to relax and search them out.
If you find something you can print it out and take it with you for your next hair appointment. I never have magazines sent to me. It seems I like the first issues and generally don’t like the rest of them, I find a total waste of money. I always look through the monthly magazines before I spend.
This is an area that a lot of women don’t investigate and they should. The blogs like mine all give free articles and other beauty information that will help you stay current with most of your personal needs.
*Other sites that are worth checking out:
www.beautyblognetwork.com – This is a big one with lots of information on it.
www.goop.com – Ideas for wonderful days with your loved ones.
Now if you’re one to leave yourself last on an occasion treat yourself and look at these next two sites with a great abundance of information.
Some of you frequent these sites weekly and know how wonderful the information is. Oprah: If your mind sometimes gets crazy visit this site and take a moment and read some of the articles and reports that are so informative about personal growth.
You do have to register but it’s free. www.oprah.com Real-Age com: I love this one also. I get a weekly email reminder from them telling me about all the new stuff to be healthy with.
I took the Real-Age Test and was very happy I was 10 years younger than my age…because I never feel my real age, and sometimes I can eat almost a bag of chips if I am in a bad emotional state of mind. I think everyone of us has our moments…it’s called being human.
www.realage.com This site was created by doctor’s Michael F. Roizen,M.D. and Mehmet C. Oz, M.D. You can also see them on Oprah’s show during the week. When they first started they sent an email everyday. That was just too much for me so I requested just one a week.
If there is just one thing in it that I can learn from it’s a great benefit. I lowered my cholesterol by not eating meat as often as I was. Oh and they now have money saving ideas for foods and nutrition. I think you’ll like it.
For Everything You’ll Ever Need In Your Life!! I have not used coupons that often in the past. I just generally only shop when there is a sale, because with running a business I also need to run a tight budget.
When I read about these in The Wall Street Journal I looked into it and found these following sites to be very useful. I have also included the Ulta link at the end because I know they have great deals on line and off.
Try these out and see where you might save for your personal needs.
www.couponcabin.com (this one was a good one)
www.ulta.com (good deals for beauty needs on and offline)