COLOUR ME BEAUTIFUL Whether you’re going lighter or pastel pink, dyeing your hair is not for the faint-hearted. Here’s what you need to know
1. Know your hair texture It is important to consider the texture of your hair, especially if you are dying at-home without a pro. Did you know that curly and coily hair have a rougher feel to the cuticle compared with other hair types? The strand is porous and, generally, drier. So while hair colour is absorbed quickly and easily, this hair type is more prone to damage, especially if you’re going lighter. The same applies to ne hair – the already thin cuticle will be eroded down, causing breakage. Thick, straight hair will nd it a little tougher to achieve a particular colour, especially when going lighter. If you have chemically processed hair, rather visit a colourist, since further colouring could spell disaster. 2. Know your natural hair colour ‘The trick to getting your desired colour just right is knowing what your natural hair colour is rst, as that forms the starting block,’ says David Gillson from Carlton Hair. The tone of your natural hair colour will make a difference to the nal result: if you have a naturally warm hair colour, like golden blonde or auburn, the result will be different than on a cool hair colour, like platinum blonde, black or ash brown. 3. Know what you want Are you going darker or lighter? Going from light to dark is always easier, and a subtle change of two shades darker can make the world of difference. The key is to know exactly what you’re after, and being familiar with the terminology of new techniques, such as balayage, babylights or oodlights so you can communicate exactly what you want. 4. Have a plan The easiest, fastest and cheapest way to shake up your colour is with at-home box dye. It’s great for touching up roots, adding subtle highlights and maybe going one or two shades darker – all totally manageable. Something extreme, like going from black to blonde, requires a lot more expertise, so don’t try it at home. Work with your colourist to understand the process and learn about what hues work with your skin tone and haircut. Advancements in technology mean that you can go from one extreme to the other overnight. Treatments like Olaplex help to rebuild the broken bonds of chemically treated hair to prevent damage – bear this in mind if you’re considering pastel pink, silver or grey as you would have to go platinum rst. 5. Know how to maintain and protect It is important to know the maintenance schedule of your new hair colour, David says. If you can’t visit the salon regularly, going platinum might not be practical for you – unless you have curly or coily hair, which takes longer to show dark roots. Regular maintenance will help prevent dull, fading colour and brassy tones. Use deep-conditioning treatments, protect your hair from the sun and avoid water for a few hours after colouring. Chlorine and other water minerals will also alter the colour, and always use heat protection, leave-in conditioners or oil when heat-styling your hair.