We know colouring your own hair can be hard at the best of times, and appreciate some of you may be trying it out for the first time in the coming days, so we wanted to share our expertise on everything you really need to know to get the best result. From how to choose the right shade for you, how to cover roots or just refresh and the best application techniques. Read on for Josh's tips to become your own at home colour pro.
1. How to choose the right colour?
'If you want natural-looking colour that covers greys, always match you shade to the colour at your root regrowth and along the hairline. If you're unsure between two shades go a shade lighter,' recommends Josh. Or for more help complete our online consultation – it’ll recommend the perfect shade and products based on your answers. For direct advice from our Atelier team, you can send any questions and a picture over to firstname.lastname@example.org or log onto live chat here on site.
2. Do I need to patch test?
We know it's another step, but prep pays off and any time you colour your hair at home, you should always complete a patch test first. Our Permanent Colour Kit is ammonia and PPD free, but we always recommend testing colour first.
3. How do I section hair to apply colour?
'Less hair is much easier to work with, so sectioning is super important', says Josh. 'It's really important, especially on long hair, to really give it a good brush through first. Smooth hair means you won't get clumps of colour or miss patches.' Then, split your hair into a 'hot cross bun' so four sections, two front and two back, and secure with sectioning clips. 'The neater the section the neater the application and if you're heavily grey, application is everything.'
4. Roots only or refresh too?
It's a common misconception that you need to apply permanent colour throughout your whole head of hair. If you just need to cover grey at your roots or you have highlights or balayage you want to keep, just touch up your roots.
'If your previous colour has faded more than you'd like, you can refresh colour through mid lengths and ends by pulling the colour through for the last ten minutes of the application, always leaving the last inch of your hair colour-free, for a more natural looking result.' For the most salon-fresh finish, we recommend using a Gloss to revive your lengths and ends between colours sessions and this can work if you have highlights or balayage too. With the Gloss always consider the lightest piece of hair and match the product to this, so a brunette with balayage would use Icy Blonde to cool and neutralise or Champagne Blonde to warm as it refreshes the colour ' recommends Josh.
5. Application is key
Technique really is everything says Josh.
First up, slip on you salon-grade gloves and apply the barrier cream. 'Squeeze it out onto the back of your hand. Use one finger and start to very gently massage it around your hairline. Try not to overlap onto the hair or it can act as a barrier to the colour. And remember the top of the ears so there's no stains.'
'Always start your colour application where you feel the grey hair is most prominent, as it allows for more development time. For most people this is on the hairline,' says Josh. 'I'm a big advocate of the dotting method; squeeze the bottle and dot the colour on in a line along your section parting, then with your fingers gently massage it in, really pushing the colour into the roots.' Generally start on the back and work to the front, as it's much easier to work through the hair.
One thing our community have told us is that covering greys at the back of the head can be challenging. Josh recommends, 'Start at the crown, feel the nozzle on your scalp and run from there down to the nape, working across through the sections with the nozzle, moving all the way round your head. This also stops the hair getting tangled at the back.' Another tip is to use two mirrors - a hand held mirror reflecting the back of your head into a larger mirror, this will help you see if you've missed a spot.
6. How can I keep hair salon fresh?
'Our permanent colour has been designed to be as kind as it possibly can be to your hair. It conditions as it colours, so your hair will feel better post colour,' says Josh. Keep the condition up post colour for the best, long lasting results, with a weekly treatment mask. Our Everything Mask (right) multitasks to lock in colour, hydrate, prevent fade and add shine to your hair. Or try a Gloss that conditions as it colours to refresh between colour sessions.