Saturday, 1 August 2015


I have coloured my hair for the last year, and I just dye it to cover up any grey hairs and also just to get rid of old highlights that still come through now. Whether you're colouring your hair for the first time or you are a professional at it, it is a great way to transform your hair or to enhance your natural hair. If you don't want to get it professionally done then there are so many brands you can choose from but it can still be complicated. Here are my tips to help make colouring your hair a lot easier, from choosing the right shade for you, to achieving the colour you actually desire and how to make your colour last as long as possible.

Choosing a colour is probably the hardest one to get correct. Look at your hair, skin and eyes to determine the natural tones and try to stick within the same shade. If you have warm, yellow tones in your skin and hair, going for a cool-toned shade for your hair probably won't look right. Try to keep your hair colour in sync with your skin tone is the key to finding the most flattering, natural-looking colour for you. Or if you find it to difficult to choose a colour then go for a lighter or darker shade of your natural hair. If you are a brunette like me then maybe go for a brunette colour with hints of red in.

If you want a really big change in hair colour then don't get your hopes up that it will be perfect the first time you colour your hair. Especially if you want to go from being a brunette to a blonde, it can actually take months to achieve the colour you want. Also a good idea is to take your time and change your colour gradually, in order to help minimise any damage to your hair.

A lot of people forget to prep their hair before they colour it. Use an intensive moisturising mask a few days before you actually want to dye it, as the moisturiser will help the hair hold the pigment better. Also, don't wash your hair the day you colour it, as in some dye kits there is a conditioner, because the natural oil on your scalp will help to protect it from the chemicals in the dye, especially if you do suffer from sensitive skin.

Most salons and "at-home dye kits" will insist on doing a skin test at least 48 hours before you have your hair coloured for the first time. This is to see if you have a reaction to the chemicals in the dye. You only need to do a skin test the first time your dyeing your hair or if you change the brand that you usually use. Apply a small amount of dye behind your ear at least 24 hours before you colour your hair, although it says 24 hours on some packets it is advised to leave it on for around 48 hours. Ask someone to check the area the next day to see if there is any redness or irritation. If there is no sign of an allergic reaction then you can use that product, obviously if there are signs you are allergic then try another brand.

If you choose to dye your hair at home, go for a subtle change for the first time you try it, as you may find you don't like it. Don't forget to put Vaseline along your hairline and on your ears to prevent the skin from staining. If you are not completely sure about the colour or the application process, then try to find the same shade but as a semi-permanent dye. Experts have also stated that you should always go one shade lighter than the colour you actually want, as colours (especially shades of red) will usually come out a little darker than they look on the box.

Whether you are getting your hair coloured professionally or you are dyeing at home, don't be shy about the colour you want. Obviously you have to be realistic, but you can have any colour you want. If you are 16 years old I wouldn't advise a bright colour as you may live to regret it and most schools won't like it. But remember it's your hair and you can choose how you want it coloured and styled. If you do get your hair coloured professionally then don't be afraid to tell the what you want and ask them any questions you might have while they are colouring your hair. Take in a photo of what you want as you might want a second opinion. But just remember that what a colour looks like on another person's hair will look different to yours and you have to be realistic on what is achievable.

If you have gone to the effort of dyeing your hair, then you will want to maintain it and the only way to do that is to buy products that will help. Dandruff or clarifying shampoos can actually strip the colour out of the hair, so they should not really be used especially if you have dyed your hair fairly recently. You want to choose a product that is not only formulated for coloured hair, but also for the specific colour you have chosen. This will help to minimise the maintenance needed to keep your hair looking fresh. Don't worry you don't have to choose an expensive shampoo for this, TRESemm√© and John Frieda do great products for coloured hair and it isn't too expensive either.

Colouring your hair is damaging, especially if your are lightening it with bleach. However, you can counteract any damage caused by using intensive treatments at least once a week, to help keep your hair in a great condition. You can make your own DIY hair masks and I will try out some recipes and the ones I like I will put up on this blog. DIY masks are fairly cheap and is a more natural alternative to using expensive conditioning treatments.

UV rays are very damaging to your hair, so if you're out in the sunshine, it's best to wear a hat or use products that also have UV protection in it, to help minimise any damage and to help maintain the quality and colour of your hair. Also chlorine can be just as damaging to your hair as UV rays. It not only damages your hair but it also affects the pigments in it, whether they are natural or artificial. Therefore, it is best to avoid chlorine as much as possible. So when you are swimming, tie your hair up in a ponytail or wear a swimming cap (which I know isn't glamorous but it will protect your hair).


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