The ads make it look soooo easy!
Mix these two bottles together and plop it on your head and
You'll have gorgeous, glossy, glamorous hair!
In the privacy and convenience of your own bath room.
And it's a lot less expensive too!
Sounds great! Sign me up!
But then you go to see your stylist for a trim and maybe you hear something along the lines of:
Box color is soooo bad for your hair. You should let me do your color!
Well, to be honest, for some people box color works just fine.
As in many things related to hair, it depends on the circumstances.
And I'm going to let you in on a little trade secret I learned from an industry educator for a major brand which has both over the counter products and a professional line.
I asked him why I would bring his line into my salon if my client could just use me to develop a formula and then go to the store and diy it.
He explained that their over the counter line was composed of old formulas and mistakes.
The upshot being that, as technology in professional color advances, it outpaces advances in the home color products.
Even the manufacturers have to admit that professional color products are better for your hair.
But there's more.
You see, it's not just what's in the box that makes your final result.
A lot of the magic is in the application.
In fact, you could take the same formula to multiple stylists who would then use various applications of that color and you would have different results.
And the home application of color, wherein you put color on all of your hair and process over even your previously colored hair, tends to do a lot of unnecessary chemical damage.
Not to mention the build up of color on the ends of the hair.
We've all seen that person walking around with brown hair and nearly black along the bottom few inches.
I'm not talking about ombre-
But you just can't get in with your stylist and you Must have your roots done before that upcoming big event!
So you get a box of color and do your best to match it and just want to get by this little bit.
I get it. I totally do.
But I'd rather see you offer your stylist overtime pay to stay late or come in early.
Or even use one of those hair crayons to cover your roots.
You see, if you don't get an exact match on your color (and you won't), there's a good chance your stylist will have to do corrective work to get that color off your hair and bring you back to the color that was formulated just for you.
The color you have been loving before this unfortunate circumstance.
That's liable to be expensive and time consuming.
Another reason I prefer salon color is that it can be customized just for you and your hair.
Over the counter color has to be very general because the manufacturer isn't looking at your hair to know what pigment your hair is contributing, how much lift it will need, what pigments need to be filled in to get your desired result.
Ah, come on, you say.
Brown hair is brown hair.
But, in fact, it is not.
And getting there is seldom a matter of just popping a
single pigment formula on your head.
For instance, grey coverage can call for some of our special formulations to get it right.
You ever see the ladies with that orange-y, pink-y red hair, a color that has never been seen in nature?!
That's box color.
And the lady doesn't know there's a pigment missing from her hair that needs to be added to the formula if she wants a flattering red.
But a hairdresser would know it.
You ever see the older ladies who color their hair black and it just looks so harsh and aging on them?
But they want that dark hair they had when they were young, even though their skin tone has faded and it no longer flatters them.
There is a pigment I would add to the formula and it would have the dark hair looking much softer against their skin. You're not going to get that customization at home.
You ever see a teenager who has bleached their hair at home and ended up with a raw orange color that hurts to look at?! That teen is unaware of the predictable stages of lift and took the bleach off too soon (and didn't follow up with a toner to finish it off)>
So when do I recommend home hair color?
Honestly, I don't.
I don't believe it is best for your hair.
That said, if you have a shade you like and stick to that color and don't get ideas about mixing it up or sometimes getting salon color but sometimes coloring at home (please don't do that), have at it.
But you could be having something better and I believe you deserve it!