When it comes to at-home hair color, all products are NOT created equal. Knowing what to look for can make the difference between so-so and stunning. Here are some secrets, including special tips from celebrity hair colorist and L’Oréal Paris expert Christophe Robin, for achieving beautiful, professional-looking results on your own.
DO choose a shade that complements your skin tone and eyes. “If you have fair skin and blue, green or gray eyes, your complementary shades will have ash or beige tones,” Christophe advises. “If your skin tone is golden, olive or dark and you have dark eyes, your complementary shades will have gold or red hues.” Have characteristics of both warm and cool tones? “Go with whichever is your preference.”
DO stick close to your own hair color if you want a subtle change. “If you’re not sure which shade to choose, go just 1 or 2 levels lighter or darker than your natural color,” says Christophe. “This will give you a noticeable change that’s not too dramatic and is easy to maintain.”
DO pick a product that’s specifically formulated to cover gray hair, which can resist coloring.
DO use products specifically designed to preserve your color, like Vive Pro Color Vive Shampoo and Conditioner for Color-Treated Hair.
DO choose a gentle formulation and indulge in regular deep-conditioning treatments.
DON’T be afraid to take a risk. Hair color offers a fun way to express your personality and experiment with a new style or attitude. “When a woman goes darker with her color, she’ll feel stronger,” Christophe notes. “When she goes lighter, she’ll feel more sexy and sensual.”
DON’T skimp on time. You might be tempted to cut corners to save a few minutes, but resist the urge. It’s crucial to allow the proper amount of time for each step — especially when you are going for a dramatic color change “You can’t rush hair color,” Christophe cautions.
DON’T judge a box by its cover. Although it’s a common misconception, you shouldn’t expect your hair color to turn out exactly like the model’s on the box. “Your personal result will be determined by the condition of your hair, your current hair color and the shade you’ve selected,” says Christophe.
DON’T overdo it. Coloring too often can compromise hair’s health and yield uneven results. A touch-up every four to six weeks is all that’s required to keep your shade looking fresh and vibrant.
DON’T forget the SPF. You protect your skin from the damaging effects of the sun, so why let your hair take the heat? “The sun is the number one enemy of color-treated hair,” says Christophe. Use shampoos and conditioners that contain UV filters to block damaging rays and prevent fade-out.