Recently, I received an email from a reader who purchased a reputable do-it-at-home hair color. Unfortunately, the color was a lot darker than she expected, turning her medium brown hair into an almost black tone, as opposed to the light brown she desired. Have you ever had a gone-too-dark mishap? Check out my tips below to find out how to fix this hair obstacle:
- If you experience unwanted results from an at-home hair color, immediately call the hotline number on the side or back of the box. The company representative can offer you professional advice on what to do next. Also, if you think there may be something wrong with the dye, it's essential to report it immediately.
- Know what formula you are buying. Semipermanent or demipermanent colors typically fade a lot faster than permanent colors — and are often more gentle for the home colorist.
- Use a clarifying shampoo, which is full of color-stripping surfactants. The faster you can get to your freshly-dyed hair, the better. I have also heard of people using dish soap, but I think that's a little extreme. Make sure you deep condition afterwards.
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- When coloring your hair at home, go only one to two levels lighter or darker than your natural hair color to avoid "oh no" moments. While most box color includes a description of what the shade will be (such as medium light brown), keep in mind that level one equals black and level ten is light blond.
- Face the facts. If your hair is too dark for your liking, the only true way to lighten color is to remove it. Hello, chemicals. Then, once the unwanted color has been removed from your hair, sometimes tones have to be added to color correct. Sure there are color-removing products like L'Oreal Color Zap ($10) readily available at the nearest beauty supply store, but if you want my honest opinion, heading to a professional is probably the best option.