10 Tips to Consider When Making a Drastic Color Change

Color make overs are this season’s spring fling! But, with any big change there are always a few considerations to avoid the so often heard, “Oh my god! What have I done!” The queen of color and she happens to be Rachael Ray’s colorist, Rachel Bodt from Cutler Soho (212-308-3838).

1.Consider the maintenance; does it fit your lifestyle? What’s the grow out going to require from you? If you are low maintenance and know going to the salon every 4 weeks isn’t in your schedule, you are really going to want to choose something that has a graceful and more forgiving grow out process.

2.Consultations; most salons offer free color consultations so you can chat with a colorist before you sit down and undergo hours of beauty. Make sure you feel comfortable with the person doing your hair. Make sure you guys are both on the same page, if you don’t like what they have to say or you feel like they might not get your vision, try on a few places before you settle. Also, referrals can be a great guideline. Look at friends or family member who has the hair you want or the hair you have and ask where they get it done.

3.Pictures of celebrities; this is a great tool when wanting to change your hair, especially since they do it so often. It is important to choose celebrities that have similar attributes, so that it becomes a reasonable and more realistic goal. Hair color, skin color and hair texture are 3 major components to remember when wanting to change your hair, even if you want a huge change it should still remain flattering to all your attributes.

4.Haircut; make sure your new color works with your haircut and vice versa. You want to show case your new color so you might consider changing up the layering or adding a long fringe to do so. If you are changing your haircut in a major way considering adding some subtle hair color to accentuate the new shape.

5.Changing your makeup; if you get a drastic color change, new make-up can really compliment your new do consider making an appointment with a make-up artist at your favorite counter and ask for some advice maybe it’s a new lipstick or new eye shadow palette.

6.Don’t do it on impulse; when considering a makeover, really sit on it. Don’t do it after a major breakup or after loosing your job. Your best option may be to carry a picture of the color/style you hope to achieve and look at it everyday before actually committing yourself.

7.When going lighter; the lighter you go, the stronger the line of color demarcation. So, remember to take into consideration the color maintenance that you’re going to have. Regarding your base color you should stay between 2-3 levels lighter than your natural color ensuring a softer grow out and a beautiful natural look. If you want a more dramatic color impact take the highlights lighter about 4-6 levels.

8.Low Maintenance Highlights; add visual interest to your hair, but stay close to your natural hair color and have highlights paneled in the interior of your hair. This means that veils of your natural color are left out to help hide any line of demarcation. This way you get strength from the placement but you still have a soft color palette.

9.Red heads; red heads are huge this season and it is my belief that everyone can pull off red! If you are on the fence about having the commitment of having a full head of copper or red consider starting with warm coppery or red tones as a highlight. This will require maintenance about every 6-10 weeks. But, if you are looking to have a whole base color which requires a trip to the salon every 4-6 weeks here are some helpful tips for choosing the right red for your eye and skin color. Reds are the easiest to fade so ask your colorist about any glazes or color shampoos you can use at home.Stay away from plum, eggplant or purple hued reds, they are rarely flattering and are very harsh looking. Steer more towards coppery, bronze, auburn or strawberry tones. These tones are more modern and can work with almost any skin and eye color.

10.Gray coverage; if you are looking to just blend your gray use a demi or semi-permanent hair color, applied to the roots. If you need to “freshen” up the ends, choose the same color but only 1-2 levels lighter to pull through to the ends. The ends of our hair are extremely porous and will grab much darker than the roots. By applying a color lighter than the root formula on the ends, you help prevent a color disaster.