Q: I have naturally very dark brown-black hair which is now graying. I have dyed it for many years, usually either black or
deep red. Nowadays, the red takes well on the length of the hair but the re-growth looks brassy and paler. I've tried adding brown to
the dye but then it goes too dark overall. What shades are suitable to mix to create a deep, Egyptian red, without orange or purple
overtones? Many thanks for a great service.
A: The problem you are facing with the increased brassiness and paleness in the areas of new hair growth are most likely being caused by the
additional gray that is forming in your hair. Since gray hair has no inherent pigmentation, the colors applied to it have no natural
depth or variance. Therefore, the hair looks brassy and color looks flat.
You’re problems with correcting the color problems you’ve had seem to be coming from using colors
that are too dark on top of already dark colors. You have to keep in mind that when using haircolor, combining two colors that are level
5 will actually “stack” and create a darker color, especially if there isn’t any lifting action in the color process.
Here’s my best recommendation to achieve the color your want: Look for a haircolor of the shade and
tone you desire. Once the color is applied, if you have the same issue with brassiness as before, you can correct the brassiness by
adding a toner color to the brassy area at the new growth. If the brass is red in tone, try using a level 9 or 10 color with a green
(or drab) base color. Apply it to the new growth, allow it to sit on the area for 10 minutes, then comb it through the hair and leave
for an additional five minutes. Then rinse and shampoo the color out.
You can find more information on correcting unwanted color results here. You will also find
information on dealing with hair color application on graying hair.