Friday, November 5, 2010

Reader Question: Eeek What Happened To My Color?!?! Is Having Natural, Healthy Chemically Processed Hair Impossible?

I had a friend color my hair and it was a disaster! My roots and tips of my hair were about 5 shades lighter than the rest of my hair. What happened?
I am sorry to hear about your predicament. It sounds like your friend dropped the ball on the application process. The roots of your hair tends to process a lot faster because of the body heat from your scalp, this is why your roots are several shades lighter than the rest of your hair. - As for the ends of your hair [the tips], this is the most porous section of hair [because it is indeed the oldest], and remember, hair that is overly porous absorbs color, and other chemicals much faster than hair at normal porosity levels. 

Proper color application consists of adding color to the middle portion of your hair, then the scalp, and finally the ends of the hair. This ensures that you get an even color from root to tip. 
How To Correct The Issue:
At this point I would recommend going to a color specialist to correct the color. Depending on the initial color used, your hair may be too weak for you to take matters into your own hands by attempting to re-color your hair at home. Doing so could lead to breakage, shedding, and damage to the cortex.

What to do in the future: 
For those out there that are looking for a change a 'la hair color, it is important to assess your goals before making the decision to color at home. Numerous factors like coloring hair that hasn't been previously colored, to choosing the proper lift level, or working with thick, coarse hair can cause problems to the color novice.

Single process colors, or kits that include lifting and color depositing in one step [normally those box colors] are usually better suited for home use. Single process colors leave your hair with one base color [no highlights], and generally only have the ability to lift your hair about 2-3 shades lighter than your normal color.
Double process coloring, involves completely stripping your hair of it's natural hair color by using an ammonia/peroxide solution [known as bleaching]. The hair is then "toned" by adding the desired color to the hair. This is best left to the professionals, or those with exceptional color skills, as the following could cause problems to those that aren't experienced in coloring: 
  • Bleaching out tinted hair or hair that has been previously colored
  • Bleaching out virgin hair 
  • Bleaching out previously highlighted hair
  • Bleaching out hair [preventing a spotty bleach out]
Is having natural, healthy colored hair impossible?
It is definitely not impossible. However an assessment of your hair should be in order before making the decision to color. Is your hair breaking, shedding excessively or chronically dry? If so, I would hold off on the color until those issues have been corrected. Applying color to damaged hair can further exacerbate issues due to the drying properties present in the ammonia.

Once you have colored your hair, it is very important your regimen consists of regular moisturizing and deep conditioning treatments. Limiting the amount of heat will also save your strands from breakage. Invest in sulfate-free shampoo's, and ultra hydrating conditioners to keep your hair properly moisturized. I recommend the entire Damage Remedy Line from Aveda when caring for your color-treated hair. - Regular protein treatments are also recommended as they will also help fortify your hair which can prevent breakage.

*Remember* : During your retouch session make sure your stylist is very careful when applying new color, as overlapping color can cause serious hair loss.

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  1. I was natural for almost two years and I coloured the front of my hair (Dark n Lovely Luminous Blonde) a month later I coloured it back black (I wish I hadn't) and two weeks after that I cut the whole thing off.

    My hair started to break off so I'm starting over fresh. I don't think I'll ever colour my hair again.

  2. Like Tre' I had a bad experience a few years ago coloring my natural hair. I won't do it again. If I really want color I will try a temporary color.

  3. I havent experience any color damage. Im in awe by this post, you really know your stuff!

  4. Dying my hair in January, so this was good information!

  5. I've been coloring my hair for a year, I haven't experienced any damage, but I do deep condition every week and moisturize my hair everyday.


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