Planning on changing up the colour of your crowning glory ? Read on to know what you need to keep in mind before deciding on a particular shade.
The first step is to ascertain the purpose of changing your hair colour – Do you want to enhance the existing colour, just get simple highlights, multi tonal highlights or go for a different colour altogether. Your goal might be covering up the greys. Or maybe a reverse ombré (darker roots, lighter tips) ?
The second thing to consider is hair history – Have you bleached, highlighted or coloured your hair before ? Undergone chemical treatments like rebonding etc or do you have virgin hair ? It is advisable to get a strand test by your hair stylist to establish hair strength, texture etc and look at appropriate options. Also, a patch test to see which type of hair colour will give best results and the products don’t cause any discomfort/ allergic reactions.
The colour of your eyes and existing hair colour – Your chosen hair colour must complement and bring out your eyes. Most Indians have brown/ black eyes and black hair which makes shades of brown universally flattering.
Skin-tone / Undertone – Remember our guide on MAC NC or NW ? The basic principle is same. You have to check the veins on your wrists. If they appear blue/ purple you have a cool undertone, if they’re green you have a warm undertone. Choose a warmer shade if your undertone is cool and a cooler shade if your undertone is warm. Whether you are light skinned, medium or dusky also affects your decision. Here’s a handy guide :
- Light skin, cool undertone – You can pick warm blondes (Gold, honey, butterscotch), warm reds (copper, amber, rust) and warm browns / browns with red undertones.
- Light skin, warm undertone – Go for cool blondes like sand and champagne or even cool browns (dark chocolate, dark auburn).
- Medium + cool undertone – A warm blonde like caramel works like a charm. Or maybe a warm black like dark mocha or brown-black.
- Medium + warm undertone – You can pick reds like Auburn, Mahogany or reddish browns
- Dusky skin, cool undertone – Warm browns like mahogany and cinnamon are a good bet.
- Dusky skin, warm undertone – Cool blacks (true black, espresso, blue-black) or cool browns (chestnut, mocha). You can opt for golden brown/ caramel highlights.
Pastel colours like blue, pink and green can also be considered. They are fun, vibrant and edgy. However, on the flip side they fade fast and require more TLC.
Don’t forget to look at expenses and maintenance – Your budget affects your decision as well as the frequency of touch-ups, overall colour maintenance and buying products that are meant for colour treated hair (shampoos, conditioners, serums). Tones of brown require less maintenance than blonde shades.
Once you’ve cleared some of these things in your head, done your online research and saved some reference pictures in your phone, its time to book an appointment with a hair expert at a salon – Discuss. Take suggestions. Show him/her what you want or don’t want. Get a strand test and patch test done. Talk about products, customizing shades, protecting your hair from the sun/pool etc.
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