How to Dye Hair
Don’t think it’s possible to dye your hair without wanting to die when it’s over? Think again.
At-Home Hair-Color Cheat Sheet
Last year, cash-strapped women flocked to drugstore hair-color aisles. And even though things are looking up in the financial sector, only a certain clientele has migrated back to the salon. “The women who come to me are looking for the salon experience,” says colorist Rita Hazan, owner of the Rita Hazan Salon in New York City. “Women who color at home just want to get the job done.”
Not that she blames them. Home hair dye is much simpler (and more effective) than it used to be. The latest formulas are easier to apply, take less time, and have lower levels of harmful ammonia and peroxide, plus the new conditioners can restore hair cuticles after coloring. “The directions inside the box are clearer now, and the help you can get from the companies over the phone has been elevated,” says Hazan. With a little bit of know-how, at-home formulas can impart rich color and mirrorlike shine, and leave your hair incredibly healthy.
The Green Scene
How “green” can you go and still get head-turning hair? Turns out, organic hair color doesn’t exist outside of natural plant-based dyes like henna. “To cover grays or go lighter, you need to use conventional hair-color technology,” says cosmetics chemist Ron Robinson, founder of BeautyStat.com. The good news? A recent report from The Journal of the American Medical Association shows no strong evidence linking hair dye to cancer. So while the ammonia and peroxide in dyes can damage your hair, it’s unlikely they’ll damage your health. Phew!
Oops…I Did It Again!
To err is human. To color correct is divine. Here are the most common home-hair-dye blunders–and how to fix them.
White Streaks – If your highlights look more albino than all-American, you can add warmth by using a semi- or demi- permanent gold tint, says colorist Sharon Dorram, owner of Sharon Dorram Color at Sally Hershberger Salon in New York City.
Brassy Roots – Brunettes trying to go platinum often find themselves with hair the color of a different metal: brass. That’s because brown hair often has red undertones, which are revealed once pigment has been lifted. To get the red out, “reapply the same shade in an ash tone.” says Dorram. “It will neutralize the brassiness.”
Too-Stark Dark – You wanted chocolaty brown but got black instead? Sprint to the shower and “shampoo your hair two or three times with Prell or another deep cleanser,” says colorist Rita Hazan. “It may help to take down the intensity.”
Want more hair-color highlights? Tomorrow, we will post Part 2 of our feature, which explains the whats and hows of hair colorant choices as well as some must-know pointers from the pros.
And The Winners are (chosen by random number generator):
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