Coloring your hair is an extremely pricey thing to do. A lot of people don’t color their hair simply because they can’t afford the salon quality, and most people don’t know how to do it on their own. “It’s easy to make mistakes when coloring your hair at home,” said Kaitlynn Wilsdon, a McDowell student who attends the Erie County Technical School for cosmetology. Here are some tips to help you color your hair like a pro.
The first step in any hair coloring procedure is to make the right choice of color. There are so many colors to choose from and for many people, this is the hardest step. Wilsdon advises to do background checks on the color brands, and find out which one is the best for what you’re going for. A good product is Splat. It includes a wide variety of colors and comes with the bleach that might be needed.
After the worst part is over, the next step is to make sure you have old clothes, towels, and gloves that can easily be discarded after use. Keeping your clothes as clean as possible is a big part of this procedure since if it gets on your clothes it most likely will get on your skin, and that is something you definitely want to avoid, especially since a later step will involve using bleach.
Next, make sure your hair is dry and not clean. Before you click away, hear me out. Color clings to hair better that hasn’t been recently cleaned, so if you’ve been procrastinating that shower for the last couple days, use this as an excuse. Another reason to leave that shower to the very last step is that if you just took a shower before you color your hair a crazy cool color, your scalp won’t have any natural oils to protect it from the bleach, that you might need to use if your hair is dark. Bleach in general creates a stinging feeling, but by taking a shower before you apply it, you’re only multiplying your pain.
Once you are completely sure your hair is 100% dry, then you can begin the real process. Since all brands are different, thoroughly read the instructions on the boxed color you chose. The instructions should tell you exactly what you need to do, so just follow along.
If your hair is too dark to color just yet then bleaching will be a requirement for extreme colors. It will take a little more time to do, but the bleach is provided with any color that might need it. Bleaching is done so the color you decide to use can actually be seen, it takes the normal color out of your hair and then the color that you want can be added. If you only want to do some of your hair then you can use some aluminium foil on the parts that are in danger of touching the hair you want to keep, to protect the hair that you don’t want to be colored.
You need to thoroughly cover the area you want to be bleached. While you have the bleach sitting in your hair, I have a couple of tips. One, try your hardest to not get any on your skin. It won’t be the end of the world if you get some on you, but try to avoid it as it is a harsh product. Two, try to ignore the burning sensation. It’s not ripping the skin from your head or anything like that, but the bleach will burn. It’s nothing to worry about, it happens to everyone. It should go on a darker color and after 35-40 minutes you should be able to see your hair turning blonde. Just like magic, except it really has more to do with science.
When the allotted time is up, you can rinse your hair and rid yourself of the bleachy feeling on your scalp. Once again, make sure your hair is dry after the rinse and maybe wait a couple minutes before coloring, there is no designated time to wait but you might want to give your scalp a five minute break from the products.
The instructions on the box might tell you to mix a couple things to get the color to where it needs to be before applying it. Apply the color just like you did with the bleach, thoroughly and carefully, otherwise, depending on the color, it could be a pain to get off of clothes and/or skin. Leave that to soak in for 30 minutes to an hour.
Once that time has passed you can grab a shower, rinse your hair until the water runs as clear (or at least as clear as it can go, it won’t be completely clear). Shampoo and conditioner is very highly recommended. Your hair will be dryer than usual for the next couple days or so, since you have taken the time to bleach it, but a few showers with conditioner will smooth that all out.
Now the only step left is acquiring the confidence to pull off your extreme look!
There’s a lot of stigma concerning hair color, people need to realize that it shouldn’t be such a confusing topic, let people choose what color they want their hair to be. Colors can be a big change, but it’s a very interesting and fun thing to do when you want to express yourself.
“Hair color is a trademark. It truly doesn’t matter if you have brown hair or orange. Hair color will not define the person under it.” says Wilsdon. “Everyone creates a personality of their own and you can be a total snob whether you have bright pink hair or black. That’s a big stereotype that shouldn’t be applied anymore.”
Confidence is one of the most important things that you can have once you have the color you want. A lot of people get discouraged by the comments they’ll get even if they’re positive compliments, sometimes the attention can be someone’s downfall. Many students also feel that confidence is key.
“If you have low self esteem you wouldn’t want people looking at you and commenting on your appearance,” said Lauren Baker, a sophomore attending McDowell. “However I think coloring your hair might be a good way for some people to build their confidence and figure out that other people’s opinions don’t matter.”
Follow the steps, flaunt it, own it, and show everyone how amazing you are.
As featured in the February 2017 edition of The Trojan Voice