Permanent Deposit-only Haircolor actually penetrates the hair and creates
permanent color changes in the hair. This haircolor must be grown out, or re-colored to get rid of it.
However, if you've tried a color in a temporary or semi-permanent formula and liked it well enough, you may want to
go with this option. Be prepared, though, to have your color retouched every 6 weeks or so. This will not lighten the hair.
Permanent Haircolor with Lift comes in different formulas depending on how
much your natural color needs to be lifted (or lightened) to reach the desired color. Use this type of haircolor if you want
lighter hair than your natural color (typically within 1-4 levels of your natural shade).
Hair Lightener is a separate product that is used to lighten dark hair
sufficiently to accept a much lighter shade (usually when the hair needs to be more than 3-4 levels lighter or more).
A man with medium brown hair who wants to have blonde hair will need to have his hair lightened using this product,
followed by application of the desired haircolor.
A Few Words on Gray Hair
It's important to know that some gray hair is resistant to haircolor. In these cases,
a special additive must be included in the haircolor formula to allow the haircolor to penetrate the denser cuticle
found on gray hair. If the strands of your gray hair are especially shiny (even when they aren't freshly shampooed)
you probably have resistant hair.
In addition, you must also note that the color you choose to use to cover partially
gray hair depends on the amount of gray hair you have. If you have less than 10% of your hair that is gray,
choose a haircolor that is 3 shades lighter than your desired color. If your gray makes up 10-30% of your hair,
go with 2 shades lighter. If you're 30-50% gray, use an equal mixture of one part 2 levels lighter and one
part 1 level lighter. If you're 50-70% gray, use one level lighter. If you're 70-90% gray, use equal parts of
1 level lighter and one part the desired color. For hair that is more than 90% gray, use the desired color.
These guidelines will yield the best color results for your percentage of gray hair.
However, you should be aware that in the cases of people with more than 90% gray hair
or hair that is totally white (and even in some people who have areas of the hair that are totally white)
the color you apply can look flat or brassy. This is because of the lack of variation in the color, and
can be corrected by simply going back and adding highlights or lowlights to the areas where needed.
Whatever your reason for wanting to try haircolor, you shouldn't hesitate. Just think carefully before making your choices
and doing something permanent. Or, adopt the attitude expressed by one of my male clients who likes to experiment with
haircolor. When I cautioned him against making a drastic change in his haircolor, he looked me in the eye and said,
"Hey! I'm a guy! If I really hate it, I can always shave my head and start over."