Hair Color Dos and Don'ts

Hair Color Dos and Don'ts

Most hair dye instructions are simple enough to follow, but there are still a few considerations that can help make the process convenient and successful. Although you don't have to be a professional or go to a professional colorist to get great-looking results, it's smart to read up on a few dos and don'ts that could save you money, protect your hair and help you look amazing.


DON’T: Forget to consider your natural hair color starting point

Looking at the before/after pictures on the side panel of the kit can help give you a visual guide of how the dye will alter your natural shade. It’s important to keep in mind that lighter hair often exhibits more obvious results. Since going lighter can involve peroxide, it’s potentially more damaging to the hair. No matter which direction you go in, decide on an after-treatment hair care plan that will keep your shade intact and help prevent damage.


According to Patricia Slattery, Assistant Vice President of Hair Color Education, Training & Testing at L’Oreal, if you already have color-treated hair, be aware that most dyes cannot effectively lighten previously colored hair. The dye you have already used will have a greater impact on your end result than your natural hair color. That’s because color can’t lift color. It means you can always go darker than the last shade you applied but you cannot go the other way. Hair dye does not lighten previously colored hair.


DO: Consider your skin tone

There are so many beautiful shades in the store aisle that it's tough to choose. If you're trying to decide between a few different options, think about your skin tone, which can help guide you toward the shade that will flatter you most. Ash and burgundy tones are better suited for women with cooler skin tones, whereas gold, copper, auburn, and mahogany tones are good options for women with warmer skin tones.


DON'T: Dye hair that has been previously chemically treated

If your hair has been relaxed, bleached, or highlighted, check the side of the box under usage advisory. You’ll find safety warnings to assess your coloring wait time and shade compatibility.


If your hair has been dyed with henna, dyeing your hair is not compatible.


DO: Follow the instructions

Yes, it's what you learned back in kindergarten, but it's still important! Reading and following the instructions that come with your dye will yield the best results. That includes performing a skin allergy test on your skin, otherwise known as a patch test, at least 48 hours prior to dyeing your hair. To color your hair, mix up all the required ingredients and keep the dye on for as long as the package instructs -- no shorter and no longer. Your dye should also tell you which natural shades and hair types it works best on so you can make an informed decision.


1. Reference: https://www.aad.org/public/skin-hair-nails/hair-care/coloring-and-perming-tips