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A Hair Color Chart

for 55+ Shades

Ready to start coloring your hair at home? (Great call, by the way.) You probably already have a few hair dye ideas in mind. Learning the box color basics can help you narrow down the right shade. We won’t take you through the whole hair color wheel, just tones and levels. Right tone + right level = hair color that’s just right. Now, please direct your attention to the Madison Reed hair color chart below. Your perfect shade is on it—here’s how to find it. Want a little more guidance? Get a free color consultation at your nearest Madison Reed Hair Color Bar.

About Hair Tones

Ever wonder what the numbers and letters on hair color boxes stand for? Tone is indicated by the letter, while level is indicated by the number. Fun fact: every natural hair color is some combination of black, brown, yellow, and red. The yellow and red pigments in your hair are responsible for underlying tone. This hair color chart reads from warmest tone to coolest tone. The letters indicate the underlying tones—for example, Vesuvius Red, the image above with 7NCR, is a “Natural Copper Red”.C stands for copper, A is ash, R is red, and M is mahogany. Warm tones neutralize cool tones and vice versa. If you’re coloring your hair lighter, warm tones become naturally exposed, so we recommend using a cool tone for more neutral results. Otherwise, let your complexion be your guide. Warm tones can help add color, while cool tones will reduce the look of redness. (And when in doubt, you can always opt for a neutral.) Get a free color consultation with a licensed colorist at a Hair Color Bar.

About Hair Color Levels

While tones are warm and cool, levels are dark and light. Your hair’s black and brown pigments determine level. Madison Reed's Radiant Cream Color ranges from level 2 to level 10 on the hair color chart, with 2 indicating our deepest black and 10 our lightest blonde. Start by determining your natural level (and your current level, if your hair is colored). If you want to go lighter, there are limits to what home hair color can do. Our formula lifts 1-2 levels on natural hair. Making hair darker is more easily accomplished at home—though for healthier-looking hair, you’ll want to go darker gradually. And if you’re looking to cover your grays? You’ve come to the right place. Whatever the level, our shades are up to the task. Read more on how can I cover my gray without coloring the rest of my hair

Roma Blonde

This light blonde shade with cool undertones is best described as a “smoky blonde” with purple and blue undertones. At a level 10, most of the warm pigment in hair has been removed and the rest is toned out with cool tones. If your hair is dark-medium golden blonde this shade would be perfect to use to go lighter for a natural light blonde result.

Roma Blonde (10NVA) is great for blending grays, and perfect for cool, pale skin tones and light eyes. Silver jewelry and pink blush work well with this hair color. For radiant results use on hair color levels 8-10.


Pisa Blonde

This beige blonde shade is perfect for those looking for an ashier, cool-toned blonde. At a level 9, this medium blonde shade is perfect for anyone who needs superior gray coverage and wants to see smoky undertones. For radiant results, use on hair color levels 7-10.

Pisa Blonde (9NA) is our medium beige blonde. See if it’s right for you.


Bologna Blonde

This dark, cool blonde shade is perfect for those looking for a wheat blonde look. Formulated with multiple cool tones, Bologna is perfect for attempting to go from light brown to dark blonde.

Bologna Blonde (8NVA) complements neutral-cool skins and works with both silver and gold jewelry. For radiant results use on hair color levels 7-10.


Genova Red

This light auburn shade is formulated with copper and gold undertones to create this lovely, dimensional red. For radiant results use on hair color levels 9-5.

Genova Red (7NCG) is perfect for cool skin tones and light eye color to create eye-catching contrast.


Portofino Red

This shade is our truest medium red tone. Formulated with a natural base and a double dose of red, Portofino will leave you with that perfect natural looking auburn red.

Portofino Red (6NRR) is great for a variety of skin tones. For radiant results use on levels 8-4.


Trieste Red

This shade is our deepest red tone, as well as our coolest red. Formulated with a natural base, Trieste is enhanced with red-mahogany tones to create a chocolate cherry result.

Trieste Red (5NRM) complements most skin tones and enhances green-hazel eyes. For radiant results use on hair color levels 7-3.


Siena Brown

This cool medium brown tone is formulate with a natural brown base with added ash tones to create a taupe shade. Siena is perfect for those looking tone down red, brassy tones.

Siena Brown (6NAV) complements make-up with pink undertones and cool colored clothing. For radiant results use on hair color levels 7-4.


Tuscany Brown

This shade is formulated to result in the perfect chocolate brown. With its natural brown base and golden-violet undertones it creates the perfect rich brown, all while offering long lasting gray coverage.

Tuscany Brown (6NGV) is perfect for all skin tones and complements brown eyes. For radiant results use on hair color levels 8-4.


Torino Brown

This deep brown shade is formulated to offer smoky results. Torino is perfect for those looking to eliminate warm tones while covering grays.

Torino Brown (5NA) complements most skin and eye tones. For radiant results use on hair color levels 7-3.


Bolzano Brown

This deep brown is our darkest brown with warm undertones. The result is a dark mahogany brown with hints of gold. Crisp white clothing and pink undertone make-up work well with this shade.

Bolzano Brown (4NMG) is complementary to most skin complexions and eye color. For radiant results use on hair color levels 6-2.


Palermo Black

At a level 3, this rich black shades offers hints of aubergine. If you are looking for the perfect deep violet shade, but still natural looking, this is perfect. With a natural base and double dose of violet your results will be cool in tone, and dimensional.

Palermo Black (3NVV) compliments cool skin tones and contrast well with green eyes. For radiant results use on hair color levels 5-2.


Pescara Black

This deepest, darkest black shade with a hint of ash is perfect for achieving a rich caviar color. Formulated with a double natural base this shade provides superior gray coverage for the most resistant grays. The hint of ash will be sure to keep any brassy out of sight.

Pescara Black (2NNA) This shade complements all skin tones. For radiant results use on hair color levels 4-2.


Need help finding your perfect shade?