The Ultimate DIY Hair Color Guide

This is an educational guest-post from Patrick Lenhoff, who reached out to me a few months back about contributing to HTHG. I said ” YES! we are about due for another post about safer ways to color your own hair at home!.”

This is a topic that I get asked about a lot, both from the perspective of chemical safety and our health, and for those on the pursuit of great results with home hair color, without spending a fortune or risking hair disaster.

As usual, my go-to recommended at-home color line is Madison Reed I absolutely love their color and their philosophy, as far as traditional hair color is concerned. Their formulations are made in Italy, where safety standards are much higher and they offer a lot of very easy to access support for choosing the right color, as well as a subscription service for people who want their shade sent to them in the mail as needed.

They also offer a great Color Gloss Treatment for reviving color in between dye sessions.

Madison Reed is a Bay Area based women-run company who is committed to safety, and great results for the DIY woman. Check them out through the links above or by clicking the add on my sidebar!

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(Photo Hairstory Studio)

The Ultimate DIY Hair Color Guide

Using the right hair color can help transform your looks by adding sparkle to your eyes, cover grays and enliven your skin tone. However, it may be quite expensive to get it done at the salon as this can run upwards. If you are looking to know more about how you can do this beauty routine at home, then you need to follow this Ultimate DIY Hair Coloring Guide. It presents easy and effective ways of performing home hair coloring that will match professional hands.

There is no reason why you can’t touch up your hair right from the comfort of your home unless you plan on taking black hair to platinum blonde. Apart from its relative cost effectiveness, it presents a great means of enhancing beauty and creating a gorgeous look. However, it is important to note that you could end up making a very costly mistake especially if you don’t know what you are doing. So ensure to follow this laid down principles to avoid ruining your hair.

Choose The Right Box Of Hair Dye

img_4900Your ability to rightly choose the box of hair dye is obviously the first step. In order to avoid creating excessive breakage and dryness, it is best you pick a hair dye that contains a limited amount of harmful ingredients like alcohol, peroxide, and ammonia. Unlike permanent dyes, most semi and demi-permanent variants can make the hair far less rough due to their inability to lift even after depositing color.

 

Choose The Right Shade

Your ability to select the right shade will determine how natural you want your hair to look. The picture on the box can be misleading so you can’t just rely on that. The best thing to do is to focus more on the numbers that represent the relative shade and the words used to describe them. If you are looking to combat brassiness, those colors described as “ash” will be suitable for you since they contain more green tones. Remember, there’s only so much you can do about that. Combating brassy hair after being chemically altered is one of the myths of at home hair dyeing.

Please note that “neutral” which often applies a blue base to the shade can also mean several different things. Expect to have purple tones when you use shades with violet in them while you stand to incorporate more yellow tones with “golden” which is a great option for concealing gray hair.

If you want to know how the color will work on your hair, the guide on the side of the box can serve as an estimate. Numbers are used to represent how dark the dye will be on a scale of 1 to 12 – the higher the number, the lighter the shade. While 4 is quite dark, 1 is black, and 12 is platinum blonde. This will help you know how the color will work on your hair.

FYI  Madison Reed takes a lot of the guess work out of choosing your shade!img_4589

Ensure To Read Instructions On The Box

Take time to carefully read all the instructions on the box before you even start dyeing your hair. Do not skip any step as they are all very important. Especially in dark dyes, there are certain ingredients that can cause peculiar skin reactions.

In order to ensure you will avoid them, it is best you protect your skin and nails by using the recommended gloves. Also, a head full of color can really get anyone woozy. So, ensure to dye your hair in an area that is well-ventilated. These and many more are part of the DIY hair coloring guide you will find on the box.

Make Olive Oil And Vaseline Your Best Companions

When dying your hair, it is good to always have a tub of Vaseline on hand. You really need a generous dab of Vaseline especially if you are going with a dark color. In order to keep the hair dye from staining your skin, you need to apply the petroleum-based moisturizer, gel, Vaseline or any thick solution along your ears, neck, hairline and temples.

This presents a cheap and effective solution to having blotchy dye stains on your skin. After, you can get rid of them by dabbing the affected area with a cotton ball soaked in olive oil.

Dirty Hair Is Bestimg_2510

A recently washed hair does not dye well like an unwashed hair. This is because the hair’s natural oils which help to provide strands with full protection have all been removed. Although this practice is highly recommended, no one would really enjoy showing up at the salon with dirty hair. This explains the advantage of doing your hair at home.

Beware Of Dyeing Pre-Dyed Hair

If you have an already-colored hair, it is recommended you proceed with caution. Getting an even, undamaged result requires a much more complicated process that can better be handled by a professional. There are greater risks of overprocessing-related chemical haircuts, hot roots, and striped or patchy color. Whether you are using the same color of your recently dyed hair or not, it is best you consider your options before making an attempt to dye over it.

Do Your Upkeep

7u6a5842Even after dyeing your hair successfully (i.e. without any major mishaps), it is important not to overlook the need for an upkeep, so as not to ruin your hard work. This process is just as important as the dyeing process itself. As long as you want it to last, it is important to avoid frequent washing. Condition your hair well, limit heat-styling, use spray-on sunscreen and color-protecting products and always use hats to protect it from the sun.

This ultimate DIY hair coloring guide can help build in you the confidence you need to safely dye your hair at home.

About the author:

Patrick Lenhoff is a freelance writer with a great interest in everything related to hair. On his website, ShavingSolution ,He loves writing articles about grooming. “Our look reflects our personality. We should keep that in mind!”, says Patrick.

THANK YOU PATRICK for sharing this post with us!

xo, HTHG

p.s.

As a DIY hair blogger who is committed to quality information and tips for better hair care, I am a proud affiliate of Madison Reed as well as many other companies who’s ethics and goods I personally use and believe in.

for more on DIY Hair Color, check out Do’s and Don’ts of DIY Color.

Cedar Solstice Braids and the Secret Selkie

7u6a0256-1Jules came over for some new color and a little lunch the other day. We went with seaweed green panels within the layers of her hair.fullsizerender-6

It reminded me of the story of the Selkie, the myth the Seal Woman from coastal Scottish and Irish folklore. I had posted this photo the previous week, from a fellow hair artist Aylah Rose. She created the look inspired by the Selkie and the Wild Women of our global folk history.

Jules took me on a tour of Scotland when we were 19. She is a Scotswoman. Not much in the blood, but 100% in the soul. It is funny how a tiny bit of actual ancestral rootage can come through so strong in some people. She lived in Glasgow for several years, and is a fiddler and a flat foot dancer. She is now a Rick Steve’s Scotland guide in the Summertime. In short, she’s a Secret Selkie.

After we finished Jule’s hair, I fed her my favorite soup that I have been making lately. It is Seaweed Soup and I can’t stop eating it. It is made with chicken broth, fresh ginger, turmeric, garlic, green onions, cilantro, wakame seaweed, and kelp noodles. No measuring, just throw it all together and boil it for 20 minutes. Turn stove off, let it cool a bit. Add a large spoonful of miso and mix it in. BAM!


Solstice Braids

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Then, we did some braids.

These braids are my new favorite way to do Milk Maid Braids, and I re-named them Fire Maid Braids because I originally did them on Fire Keeper Miriam at last years Spirit Weavers Gathering and she rocked them so beautifully. I love them because they are very sturdy and can be worn for weeks at a time, and they look so great from all angles. Finally…….here is a tutorial:)picmonkey-image-3

 

  • Begin by creating 2 french braids. Dutch braids also work, it is totally up to you. Secure the ends with small elastics.
  • Now, gently pull the edges of the braids apart, starting at the ends and working your way up. This softens them and plumps them up a bit:)
  • Now, pull the ends of the braids forward and overlap them at the top of your head. Use bobby pins to secure them every few inches. Add extra pins as needed to the places that stick out. Tuck the ends under the braids and pin them so that the hairstyle appears continuous.
  • Pull down soft pieces of hair around your face and neck to soften the look.
  • Add little Cedar boughs and bits to adorn the braids for the perfect Happy Solstice/ Holiday Hair Vibe.

 

xo, HTHG

 

 

Sunday Crafternoon: Crystal Hairpins and Healing with Goldirocks!

7U6A8956Hi dears! This is a followup from one of my very first posts, which was a DIY crystal hair pin tutorial. This time, the glue gun takes over, and the crystals are much bigger!

Crystals are powerful, healing and royal, and I love the idea of wearing them in a braid, where they can impart their healing energy, protection and wisdom to us all day long!

Precious stones have been a source of inspiration for me as long as I can remember, perplexing me with the grandness of their design and color and inspiring a true sense of awe in the natural world.

spirit quartz amethyst( all rock shots are from Goldirocks Instagram)

I am on a journey to know more about crystal properties and share the knowledge that I learn, so I reached out to Yulia from Goldirocks, our favorite magic crystal slinger who cleanses and charges all of her rocks under that California Moon, ( Sign up here to be notified when the launches her online shop!) and DEFINITELY follow her on Instagram for inspiration. Smoky Quartz

Before we begin our DIY Project, here is a little thoughtful crystal knowledge.


Crystal Properties

amethyst

Here is some info on our favorite crystals:

(Crystal text and images copyright Goldirocks)

Amethyst: The crystal of transformation, creates a violet bubble of protective and transformative light around your. Clears negative and addictive emotional patterns and energies. Helps you make choices to serve your highest good.

Clear Quartz: Holds the full spectrum of the rainbow within, amplifying the effects of other crystals. Creates a clear channel with the higher consiousness.

Smoky Quartz: Helps you connect with and feel at peace in your physical body. Connects you with the magical realms of earth, animal and stone.

Angel Aura Quartz: Clear quartz which has been fused with precious metals, making it look as though it has been dipped in a rainbow. Holds a sparkling, lighthearted energy. Connects you to your inner child and sense of play.Goldirocks

Cleansing and Charging:

To cleanse your stones, regularly lay them out overnight in the moonlight to cleanse and recharge. A few hours in sunlight will recharge them after a particularly potent healing session.

Hold your crystals in your left hand, close your eyes and take three deep grounding breaths. Visualize a stream of white-gold light rising from the core of the earth, moving through your body and into your crystal.

Speak: Now release all energies which are not of this time and place, and which no longer serve the highest good. You are cleansed and cleared in light and love.clear quartz

Now place crystal in the sunlight or the moonlight for at least 4 hours. Take care to not charge them in any place to hot or intense, as it will fade their color.

Charging them under the full or new moon is especially potent!

So babes, find the crystals that call to you, charge them up and get ready to wear them in your hair, infusing your crown chakra with super crystal power.


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Today’s DIY is as simple as this: Crystals, glue gun, and hair pins/ clips.

For this project I used an Amethyst point, Smokey Quartz point, an Angel Aura Quartz Point and a Clear Quartz point. I encourage you all to find the crystals that call to you, and learn a bit about their properties to deepen and enrich the experience of wearing jewels on your crown with the power of intention.

And most importantly, get creative!……..anything is possible when you have a glue gun.


Crystal Pins, DIY

7U6A8629 (1)Depending on the shape of the crystal you will want to use different pins, glued in different ways. Decide which clips go with which crystals. Consider where and how you want them to be worn, whether you want them to slide across the hair like a barrette, or be pinned directly down into a bun.

Lay out your pins and your crystals.

Plug in your Glue Gun and let it heat up.

Apply glue directly to the crystal, the length of the pin. Set the pin directly into the glue, holding it there firmly as the glue dries.

Add more glue around the pin if their are areas that need more reinforcement.

*Here is the thing to consider……..Because crystal points don’t have a porous surface in most cases, once the crystals are glued on, you will need to handle them gently so that they don’t slide out of the glue.7U6A9052

Encrust your braids with jewels any time you need a little power boost or pick me up. Remember that queens wear jewels in their crowns for a reason;)

For braid inspiration for your crystal pins, check out our Fierce Braids category.

xo, HTHG and Goldirocks

 

Raspberries and Vintage Denim. 3 DIY Hairstyles for Crimped Hair.

IMG_1731Hi Babes! Today I have some hair candy to share, this color scheme that I did a few weeks back which is inspired by rasberry jam smeared on vintage denim, and a general celebration of Color Texture Form which started HERE.


I used a cool magenta for her roots, (custom blended Manic Panic) then lighter pink in her ends, which marbled into blues and some dark greens and ended with streaks of denim blue over everything. Was truly a color bomb that kept getting better and better the more I added to it.

I wanted to share some quick stying tricks I did on her once her hair was dry and crimped. Crimped hair, if you don’t already know, is very fun to style because it acts more like wool and stays where you put it. Also, it is thicker and has much more volume and loft to it. It is very similar to natural/kinky textured hair so If you have that sort of hair or if you are very curly, try these hairstyles too!

I’m making it my goal to bring back crimped hair and encourage all different kinds of crimping, using heat, braids, foil, wire, etc. I love it because crimped hair looks great for days and days on end and is a fun way to break you out of a hair rut.

Okay also, a general question: Does anyone know of a solar powered hair crimper? If not, can someone get on making one?


IMG_1728Our first hairstyle today goes like this:

A braid on each side, two french braids down the back. Wrap the loose ends of each french braid and pin them into two buns.

Now take your two side braids and wrap them across the top of your buns, overlapping each other. Tuck the ends around your buns and pin them into place. Voila!raspberry

Next one starts off with a center part, and then 2 high twisted buns which leave the bottom half of the hair still hanging down.

Split the hair on the bottom vertically through the center, and do a tight braid on each side. Wrap each braid up and around the opposite bun, criss-crossing them across the back. Tuck the ends around your buns and pin them into place.denim

Next one is the same, except instead of braids, do twists. Twisting crimped hair is such a dream. Doesn’t it look cool?

 

Enjoy!

xo, HTHG

 

Mother’s Day Hair Transformation

72666AE2-E646-4036-8EA1-E838BE7721A2Life is full of transformative changes, and our hair has been used as an emblem for life change for thousands of years, and across all world cultures. This is powerful. Today, with access to chemistry and knowledge of color theory, we have so many options for transforming our hair and marking our paths of change. This story is for all the Mamas out there, and it is my offering for Mother’s Day, because I want to honor the transformations that we go through as mothers.

I want to start by summerizing the transformation of a caterpillar to a butterfly, because it is beautifully stunning.

Screen Shot 2016-04-27 at 1.48.07 PMA close lady friend recently pointed out to me when caterpillars become butterflies, they don’t evolve from one form directly into the next as a fetus becomes a baby. Nope. Catepillars enter their crysalis (Their preparatory pod of of transition ) and then they digest themselves and turn into catepillar soup. Then, somehow, the cells that are spared in digestion organize themselves to create all of the magnificent parts needed to grow a butterfly from scratch. What the fuck. Nature Wins Forever. I am just floored by this.

B1A1BF9B-E47A-4CCD-8171-DEF8BDEFC235What a beautiful way to embody a transition in life. This fact about butterflies was the inspiration for my sister’s hair transformation.

how would you feel about me doing something wild with my hair?

My sister Brook asked her new boss this. She had just started a new job as a science babe in an HIV research lab, turned 35, had a baby, moved to a new city with her husband, defended her thesis, and tried out for lead singer in an all girl punk rock band. It was time to celebrate some major life transformations with new hair.

Her boss answered……

Regarding work, my philosophy is that appearances have nothing to do with what kind of scientist you are, so your appearance is your choice. On a personal level, I would love it if you did something wild with your hair – I think it is nice when people feel comfortable with personal expression. And on an ethical level, I think we should all find our own ways to encourage our colleagues and the world in general to be more tolerant, and not afraid of people who don’t look like them. Especially these days. So go for it!  It will be fun to see what you and your sister come up with 🙂

This, we took as a green light.

PicMonkey CollageWe both new It was time for butterfly hair, to honor the recent transitions in her life and help her start anew. I spent a few days thinking about what to do with her hair (she gave me full artistic license to design, bless her.) Then, the day came to transform.

Please feel free to not read through the entire description of how her hair was done, it is quite technical, hairdresser talk and you may or may not be interested. You may also just look at the pictures if it suits you. If you want to learn how to do this hair, please read on:)

Brook’s Butterfly Hair

Here is what we did to create her cut and color……First, a major chop. I had been obsessing over the idea of shaggy bowl cuts, and decided that it would be the perfect hair move for Brook. She was game for anything. I basically did a center part on her dry hair, then pulled everything straight forwards to a stationary design line that ran parallel with the tip of her nose. In two chops with my shears, she had a rough bowl cut, and was ready to bleach.

I bleached her virgin hair with 30v developer and Olaplex.

Then, touched up that shaggy bowl cut, by working through her hair in diagonal sections, beginning at the hairline, pulling the hair forwards to that same original design line, and cleaning up the line. The haircut honestly barely needed any work.

*Cheaters guide*

If you want to DIY this haircut, do a center part, brush your hair all straight forwards, even hang your head forwards to make it easier. Gather all of the hair and brush it neatly into a ponytail that gathers at the tip of your nose. Pointcut that ponytail right off. Let the hair down and check out your gorgeous kitchen shag.

IMG_5312 I began by mixing her colors. I knew I wanted the shades to match her eye color, so I took a picture of her eyeball, then saturated it a bit and used it as a guide for mixing. I also knew I wanted a pop of pink. IMG_5053IMG_5054

Then, I began by sectioning of a circle on the top of her head, which would fall down over the top of that shag, radially. I wrapped it into a tight bun and clipped it off, to keep it out of the way. Then, I carefully painted her roots with the deeper teal color. C3B7C507-F75C-4CC8-A32C-42BBA4863565

Once I had applied the teal to her roots, I carefully applied it to the roots of her circle section, and then re-clipped it off. brook

Then, I applied the lighter teal to the rest of her hair, (excluding her circle section) and I also left out the ends of the hair around her face, wanting to incorporate some yellow into them.

Now, the fun part was coloring that top circle section, using the ColorPrint Technique!

I knew I wanted color to encircle her hair in a way that would really make her bowl cut pop, because when color is designed around a haircut, It takes the hair to a whole new level.CD446D4D-E3A3-4B0B-92C9-71753A764C9E

Here is what I did………..I made a half inch deep sub section, straight across the top circle section. I combed the hair from the subsection straight forwards, onto a piece of foil. Then, I taped it off, straight across above her ends, leaving about 2-3 inches of ends exposed. I made sure that the tape was securely sealed on top of the hair.

Then, with pink and a small art brush, I lined either side of the tape, creating 2 pink lines through the hair which would outline the resist image of the tape. AB737325-7A9A-40F0-B6F4-9D811A577FB4

Then, I gently feathered the top pink line upwards, and the bottom pink line downwards, so that they would gently melt into the next colors.

With separate art brushes, I applied the lighter teal between the roots and the upper feathered pink, and I appllied the yellow to from the ends of the hair, feathering upwards to the pink. ( ends first, so as not to bleed too much pink downwards.)

Once this sub-section was colored, I made a second sub section behind the first, a half inch deep, and pulled it down and laid it directly on the first colored subsection. I repeated the steps, taping off the hair right over the first tape (layering tape/hair/tape/hair.) and then applying color in the same way. I knew that by bringing all the hair from this top circular section back to our original design line, and coloring it in the exact same manner all through the entire top section, we would end up with a circle around the head, when the hair falls naturally.

I worked my way through that entire top section, making half inch deep sub-sections, layering them, taping and coloring them one on top of the next. This, my dears, is hairdresser magic :).

Once all the color was applied, she sat for 20 minutes. Then I rinsed her with cool water, top section first, tape still on. I rinsed with medium water pressure, leaving the tape attached until all the excess color had been rinsed from the section. ( This helps keep the resist image clear and crisp!)

Once top section was rinsed, I rinsed everything all together, until the water ran clear and her hair felt clean of product.66C9442D-85B3-447A-9A8C-CF59F5C0C61D

Then, I rough dried her, and showed her herself in the mirror. There is just nothing like that moment of embodying the transformation. Butterfly wings sprouted from her back and she fluttered home, stopping to smell every flower along the way.

DC87D44E-1655-4858-9E70-072AB839F489FF46561A-8DF4-4801-9CD5-08BE21939B1DWhen she got home, her 2 year old son wouldn’t look at her, at first. Then, a little while later, he took her face in his hands and smiled and told her she was beautiful.

Happy Mothers Day!

As an extra token of my love today for mamas far and wide, head over to HTHG Instagram and enter our Free Your Hair Brush Giveaway.

xoxox, HTHG

 

 

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