Change Your Look: A Hair Color Change

Young woman who is ready to change her look
Photo: Dreamstime
At any given time, fifty percent of women are unhappy with the way they look. They say they want a change and many take the plunge to make that change - sometimes with disastrous results. Of course, not all changes are bad ones, but many women admit that they need assistance when it comes to changing their hairstyle. We're here to help.
The first area of change - and in many cases, the easiest - for the hair is color. Color can be used to enhance your hair’s natural shade, to cover gray, or to make a dramatic difference. The best part is it doesn't have to be a major commitment to make an interesting change in color.
Here are some tips for making a hair color change painless:
1. Decide what kind of color change you want first. Do you want something bold and sassy, or just a hint of something to add a little spice to your look? Knowing this will help determine the kind of color that you need to use.
2. Look for colors that belong on your palette. Many women decide to go for colors that are wrong for them because the color is popular. It's not a matter of trying to "make" you look beautiful. It’s all about bringing out the beauty that’s already there.
If you work within the natural framework of your color tone, you’ll be much happier with the results. Remember, the beautiful Latina actress Eva Longoria-Parker would have no business trying to wear an arctic blonde hair color, just as the pale blonde Kate Hudson would have no business going for a chocolate brown color.
3. Think of the season. You should let the season of the year help you determine where to go with your hair color choices. In the spring and summer, go with a lighter shade of color. Add a few highlights or an overall tonal lift to your natural color can freshen up your appearance and make you feel better about yourself. In the fall and winter, the key is to add richness and deeper tonality to your color.
4. If you’re unsure about a color, find out if it is available in a temporary or demi-permanent formula. Temporary color will last only until your next shampoo, and demi-permanent color will wash out gradually over the course of 8-12 shampoos. This allows you to try out a look without making it permanent.
5. Make sure you know what you're getting into when you get started on this coloring process. If your plan is to cover your gray, using a permanent hair color means that you will have to undertake regular maintenance touch-ups to keep the new growth colored. In these cases, I generally recommend using a demi-permanent color so that you can cover the gray as desired, but that if you decide to stop covering the gray you can let the color wash out completely.
6. Try a color-gloss service. In most cases, a simple (colorless) gloss application can add depth and shine to your hair's natural color and make it look richer and more vibrant. Color-gloss services are also terrific for those who color their hair since the gloss formula helps to seal the hair shaft. Many colors fade quickly and a gloss treatment can help your color last.
Professional hair color advice
Photo: Alexanders’s Images/Canva
Color-specific Tips:
Here are some ideas for specific hair color groups that can help you change your look:
1. Use a color gloss treatment to give your hair extra shine, enhancing the hair's reflectivity.
2. Try adding lowlights to the lower layers of the hair. This can make the natural shade look brighter and more vibrant without lightening the hair, and it is much less harsh a process than lifting hair color.
3. Try a toner service instead of a full-fledged color to add some subtle depth to the hue. A light golden glaze can make blonde hair warm and inviting.
4. Use a brass-fighting shampoo and conditioner to keep your blonde color looking natural.
1. Keep in mind that depending on how dark your hair is, you won’t get a lighter color without a bleaching process.
2. Try a "wash" of a bold, vibrant color (such as burgundy or indigo) on the darkest hair colors. This adds some depth to the natural color and creates a glimmering effect on the hair.
3. Use a clear-gloss treatment to make the most of your hair’s natural richness and vibrancy.
4. Try a color-depositing shampoo and conditioner to enhance the darker tones of your hair. Or a demi-permanent color to add richness and warmth to medium and lighter brunette shades.
1. Since so many shades of red are more subtle, perhaps you might try a toning color in a demi-permanent formula to make your shade brighter and hotter.
2. Avoid red colors that look or sound fake or unnatural. If you're choosing between colors called "Candied Apple" and "Cayenne," go for the "Cayenne" as the more "natural-sounding" shade of color.
3. Style the hair using curl, since the waves and texture in the hair will make for more light refraction, adding depth to the look of the color.
By Stacy | Updated | ©