Ah, summer! It's getting warmer, lighter ... and we're taking inspiration from the season by embracing the seasonal trend of warmer, lighter - dare we say, sunnier - hair color.
Of course we want warmth, not a full-on heat-wave. Think natural sun-kissed highlights, like those seen on small children. Keep in mind, if you decide to go for this trendy tonal change and add golden hues into your hair, consider your starting point, what colorists call your “contributing pigment.” This refers to the hues that will naturally be exposed once the hair begins to lighten. Here are a few color recipes to make sure you get softly golden, and not brash and brassy...
Starting point: Medium Natural Brown
Goal: Subtle golden tones most visible in natural sunlight
Use: Radiant Cream Color in Veneto, a cool light brown with smoky undertones, or Bologna, a cool dark blonde with smoky undertones. Both are “ash” shades. While it might be confusing to use cool/ash shades to create a golden outcome, remember, warm tones are coming forward on their own in the lightening process. The ash will keep those overly red tones softly muted to create soft dimensional golden colors.
Starting point: Medium to Light Brown with salon highlights
Goal: Move from foils to an “all-over” lighter golden dark blonde
Use: Radiant Cream Color in Bologna, a cool dark blonde with smoky undertones, or Sicily, a dark natural blonde with hints of gold. Apply at your natural re-growth area or root line to soften your roots and help them blend in better with your pre-existing highlights. Leave the color on the darker area of your hair right at the root for about 25 minutes, then in the last 10 minutes, pull the color through to the lengths of the hair to “color-balance,” giving soft coverage to the lengths of your hair, while allowing the new growth plenty of time to fully lift and deposit. Tip: Keep a tube of Color Reviving Gloss in Crema on hand over the summer for a color “pick me up” every few weeks. Crema is a cool pale gloss that will curb any brassiness sneaking into your golden locks.
Start point: Darker Natural Brunette
Goal: Soften natural color with warm mahogany tones
Use: Radiant Cream Color will lift natural hair color 1-2 levels lighter from its existing level. If you are a level 4 or 5, you can expect a bit of a shade shift, but going blonder will take more of a highlighted/salon level effect. If you want to soften up your shade and add some warm dimension, consider level 6 with Tuscany, a medium brown with hints of gold, or for a lighter brown with mahogany tones, try Como. These shades offer soft dimension throughout with multi-dimensional gold and mahogany shades pre-mixed right into the tube for you. Remember: the darker the starting point the more warmth you'll see, so use gold to create mahogany, and mahogany to create an almost reddish tone. To refresh faded tones between coloring, use Color Reviving Gloss in Miele with the Tuscany Medium Brown, and Color Reviving Gloss in Amaretto with the Como Light Brown.
So there you have it - a few colorful ways to make your summer golden. Add in a couple of lazy days by the pool, a few mornings of sleeping in, plus a couple of warm nights out with friends, and you've got the recipe for the perfect summer. Enjoy!