Hair is our biggest accessory – the first thing that people notice about us, the right hair colour and contact lenses can bring out our eyes, make our skin glow and contribute a huge difference to our overall look. And these days, with in-salon and even at home hair dying technology having come on in technological leaps and bounds, almost every finish and colour is well within reach, for perfect beach blondes to bold reds, sensuous brunettes and even brights and pastels (yet to try this though eeeek)! Hair is there to be experimented with, so as long as you’re taking good care of your barnet, have fun experimenting with different colours. Finding your ideal match is where it can get a little harder. How do you make sure that you’re going to pick the shade that is most flattering and brings you to life?
What’s Your Damage?
Virgin hair – locks that have never been dyed before – is the ideal base to start from, as it hasn’t been exposed to chemicals and is less likely to be damaged unless you heat style your hair a lot, or over-wash it. If you’ve had a disaster find out How To Get Rid of Yellow Tones in Blonde Hair After Bleaching first. The more processed your hair is, the more brittle and weak is probably is, which means it may not fare well if you opt for a drastic colour change. It’s far easier for damaged hair to go darker than it is to lighten it. The process of lightening involves using harsh chemicals that strip follicles of their pigment and leave them weaker. In these cases, you may be better off enhancing your hair’s natural shades and building up its condition with treatments and products.
Cool or Warm?
The reality is that you can now achieve almost any shade from any other, but that doesn’t mean every variety will suit you. There is generally a blonde, a brunette and a red shade to suit everyone, but the secret lies in getting the right tone. To achieve this, first you need to figure out if you have a cool or a warm skin tone. Warm skin tones are split between autumn and summer, which cool skin tones fall into either winter or spring colour families. The best way to tell is by taking an online quiz and answering a few questions, or looking at celebrity examples to work out where you fall. This will lead you to the colours that suit you the best.
You can also take a short cut to finding out your undertones by taking a look at your wrist – what colour do your veins appear as? If they look blue or purple, it’s a sign that you have cooler-toned skin, while if they look greener, you’re warm-toned. Similarly, your eye colour can give a clue – golden flecks in the eyes generally means warm, while lots of blues and greens means cool. How does this translate to hair colour? Well, those with warm skin tones are better off opting for a cooler colour – a creamy, ash blonde or a cool brown, If you have cooler skin, warm things up with rich, chocolate browns and sun-kissed, honey blondes.
And if you want rainbow locks? Darker skin can look washed-out by pastels and suits rubies, fuchsias and magenta tones instead, while blue and turquoise locks work best on those with golden complexions.
What’s The Investment?
Now that you know what shades will suit you best, you’re still left with a spectrum of colours to choose from. So your next consideration should be about budget and time. Yes, you can achieve the colour you want, but depending on what that is, you could be looking at a lot of upkeep.
For example, if you are quite dark naturally and aiming for blonde tones, you’ll require regular salon visits to keep your roots at bay – perhaps as often as every three weeks. Aftercare is also a huge part of maintaining the most flattering, vibrant hair colour. You may need to use specialist products for best results, including a sulphate-free shampoo and a rich, colour-guard conditioner . Investing in the right products will keep your colour going much longer. There are ways around it if you don’t fancy the idea of an ultra-high maintenance colour – ombre and balayage techniques allow you to go for a colour gradient that frees you from the constant cycle of root touch ups. And if you’re just after a subtle lift, sticking to some natural looking, face-framing highlights a shade or two off your base colour can have a low-key effect that makes you look more polished.
Soooo, hopefully you’ll be more clued up on hair colour and hair care! Hope you enjoyed this one 🙂
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