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The Hairapist Is In: Get a Hair Color Check Up

by September 30, 2020

smiling woman with short curly black hair wearing a pink top

Image by Madison Reed

Time to color your hair? Then it’s also time for what we like to call a “Hair Color Check Up.” Don’t worry—you won’t be getting any shots with this kind of check up. Instead you’ll be getting gorgeous, healthy-looking hair. Here’s how…

Maybe you color your hair every 6 months, or maybe you’re more on the every 3 week plan. Whatever your hair color schedule, you want to make sure your hair color doesn’t get stuck in a rut. We’re not talking going from medium brown to neon pink—although we’re definitely not against that if you’re wanting to go pink—no, we’re talking about taking the time to assess both the overall health of your hair, and the shade you use.

Good hair color isn’t just about the hair color’s also about the health of your hair. Healthy hair will “take” the color better, more evenly, and it will hold the color longer. If your hair looks or even feels the tiniest bit dry, try using a deep conditioner or hot oil treatment about 3 or 4 days before you color. Our Pro Boost: Hydrate does the job beautifully. This will add much needed moisture to your hair, never a bad idea when you color your hair.

The day before you color, it’s a good idea to remove any product buildup by using a clarifying shampoo. This will help the porosity of your hair, so your color “takes” evenly. Better yet, if you feel as if repeated coloring has caused your color to build up, i.e. look too dark or drab, use Prime for Perfection™. This is what’s called a pre-color prep step, kind of like what a primer is for makeup. A hair color primer removes excess color buildup, creating a flawless canvas for your hair to receive new color. You can use Prime for Perfection the same day as you color your hair—even right before you color. However, if you are using a clarifying shampoo, we recommend doing that the day before. If not using Prime for Perfection, you want to skip shampooing the day you color. Day old hair is best.

So now that you're ready to color your hair, take a moment to make sure you have the right shade. Some people use the same shade for years, and that is totally fine. However, it’s not a bad idea to check in on your color every now and then. Some people opt to go warmer in the fall, a tad darker in the winter, a little lighter in the spring. Some people find that as they get older, their skin tone changes, and a slightly lighter or darker shade is more flattering. To further complicate shade selection, your natural color changes over time, both hair texture itself, and increasing amounts of gray hair. All of this should be taken into account when choosing your hair color shade. But not to worry—you can always take the guesswork out of finding your perfect shade by contacting our Color Crew for a free hair color consultation. You can do this either via chat or phone, or you can stop by a Madison Reed Color Bar. If you want to see how the shade will look on you before you color, check out our virtual try-on tool.

Not you. Yet. First you need to figure out where you need to color. We’re not taking which bathroom but where on your head. Chances are, you only need to color your roots. Perhaps you’ve heard us say this before, so excuse us if this is a repeat, but you shouldn’t apply permanent hair color all over your hair every time you color. Doing so will eventually make your hair color turn too dark and dull, which can be a common complaint for people who regularly color their hair at home. What you may not realize is that when you get your color done in a salon, you most likely aren’t getting the same permanent color applied all over your hair every single time you have an appointment. Instead, your colorist usually applies permanent color only at your roots and your re-growth. Then your colorist will apply a semi-permanent color, also known as a gloss, to the mid-lengths and ends of your hair to refresh your color without over-darkening it or causing color buildup. This is all just part of getting your hair colored at a salon, so if you color at home, you might think you should be getting the same result using just permanent hair color. Every time. All over your head. really shouldn’t be doing that. You truly only need to apply permanent color all over your hair if it’s the first time you’ve ever colored your hair, or if you are drastically changing your shade. (Not sure? Contact our Color Crew if you have any questions!)

You. Now. Color + gloss is most likely just what the “Hair Doctor” has ordered, but after you have properly “diagnosed” your hair color needs, you are ready to color.
And that’s that—your hair color check up. We wish we could give you a lollipop for being so good, but instead we’ll just give you gorgeous, healthy-looking hair color. Enjoy!

Tags:  Hair Care Gloss