Get the Best Out of Hair Colouring at HomeGet a terrific result with box colour.

This post is brought to you by Clairol.

Most women really enjoy going out to the hairdressers to have their hair done, but if you’re doing it every 4 – 6 weeks, it can get very expensive.

If money is tight, but you want your hair to look great, why not try doing a colour at home? I’ve been home-colouring for 20 years now and I don’t think anyone can tell the difference between a home colour or a hairdresser colour.  There are some nifty hints on getting the very best result – at home! Here are my tips to get a great home hair colour, what I use, and how to make your hair soft!


Choosing the Right Hair Colour to Suit You

When choosing a home colour, a good rule of thumb is to choose a colour within two to three shades of your natural colour (if you know what that is!). Take into account the percentage of grey you might have (and check out the back of the pack to see if it is suitable for grey hair coverage). The condition of your hair will also affect the outcome, if your hair is glossy and healthy, your hair can withstand a bit more chemical treatment than if you have fine or previously bleached hair.

A really great tool to use to see what colour will look great on you is to try the My Shade App.  It’s free (important!) and it is lots of fun trying on different colours to see what they will look like!  Plus if you are wanting to see what a totally different colour will look like – you can try it without actual colouring! #winning!

PLUS they are currently sending our FREE SAMPLES OF HAIR COLOUR through the App.  #Againwinning!


my shade app


If your hair has been bleached previously or is damaged and you can’t afford to get to a hairdresser, perhaps consider doing a few home hair treatments to get your locks in the best condition possible!  Something as simple of olive oil or coconut oil rubbed through your hair with a hot towel for an hour can do wonders if you do it weekly!


Need Some Foils or Highlights?

You will definitely need a friend to help you, but yes you can do them at home as well. There are two ways to do highlighting, the cap and hook, or using a specialised brush.  If your hair is relatively short, the cap and hook is perfect. But longer hair should use a brush as it can be hell pulling long hair through a cap. This Nice’n Easy pack contains both – cap and hook AND a brush so you can choose what will suit you. Remember when highlighting that less is more. Choose a  few highlights to frame your face if you haven’t highlighted before. If it looks good, then give your hair a few good treatments and then go a bit further.

Choose a shade only a few shades lighter than your own to get the best look!

frost n tip

Whole Head Colour or Just the Roots?

More often than not, it is just the roots of your hair that need the colour touch up. To keep your hair in great condition, only colour the parts that need to be done (ie the regrowth at the roots). Using a brush (or get a friend to help you), apply the colour on the re-growth only and allow it to process. To refresh the rest of your hair, add a bit of water to the remaining colour, mix well before putting it through for the last five minutes of processing only. Adding the water will ‘soften the blow’ of the chemicals and will be gentler on your hair.

Even better, you can now buy specially formulated ‘Root Touch-Up’ colours.  I use the Clairol Root Touch-Up – it covers well and is nice and gentle.

Putting a whole head of hair colour on every time when your hair doesn’t need it will dry it out and cause hair breakage. It will also ‘dull’ your hair every time as only healthy hair will shine!

root touch up

I like this product by Clairol.  It is gentle and has good grey coverage.

Read the Directions

Sounds simple, right? But it’s always good to read through the directions before you buy, and then again as you start dying your hair. Make sure it’s the type of dye you want, whether that be permanent, semi or non-permanent. Take a look at the percent of the peroxide mixture as well (which is used for bleaching). You’ll get better results with a high number like 30% than you would with something lower.

Use Good Gloves

You absolutely need to have gloves when you colour your hair. This stuff stains like crazy, and it’s nearly impossible to wash off. A good hair dye brand should come complete with a good set of gloves. You don’t want to get home, find out there aren’t any in the box and then resort to something else at the last minute (sandwich bags, dish gloves, I’ve used them all!). If you have to, pay that extra dollar or two for something that comes as a complete set or buy a good set of gloves from a hairdressing supplier.



Do A Allergy Test First

If you’ve used a lot of dyes before, you can probably skip this step. Otherwise, make sure you test the bleach and dye by swatching a bit on your arm on the inside of your elbow to make sure you don’t have an allergic reaction. After swatching, wait for a few hours, and then if it all looks good, you can continue with the rest of the box.

Use a Brush and Bowl

Most brands of hair dye will give you a little bottle to mix the dye colour with the cream. But when was the last time you saw a pro using a mixing bottle in a salon? Invest in a small bowl and brush (available cheaply from most hairdresser suppliers) and keep these items only for this purpose. Use the small end of the brush to separate your hair into sections, using hair ties to keep them apart. Make the sections about 3cm square so that they’re easy to work with. Then, use the bristles to scoop up the dye mixture and apply it to your hair, starting with the roots and doing a section at a time.


Follow the Box Directions for Rinsing

If the box tells you to rinse the mixture out after a certain amount of time, you should follow that time schedule, at least the first time. Some people do need to wait longer (grey hair takes longer, generally), but you’ll realise that in time for the second round. For this first time, just do as the box says. Leaving the mixture in longer than necessary will make it harder to wash out. Use warm water for the rinse. You can either use the sink or shower, but the shower is definitely easier.

Wait 24 Hours to Wash

Washing right away after you rinse is a big no-no. The colour needs time to set, so you should give it at least 24 hours before you try to shampoo it, longer if you can stand it. For the rinse, condition with the conditioner that came with the dye and leave it at that.

A Few Other Pointers:

  • If you can, having someone to help you apply the dye will give you a better finish. They can see the back of your hair along the hairline and can make sure you haven’t missed any. Hubbies (if they will do it) are a good option to help you out!
  • Once the dye is applied, it helps to get a washer with a little shampoo, olive oil or soap to get rid of any dye on your forehead or ears. As I mentioned above, this stuff stains like crazy and you don’t want to have to hide under your hair because your forehead is the same colour!
  • A hairdresser’s tip: If you add a little warm water to the dye in your hair and rub it on the spot where it has ended up on your skin, it will help remove it. Another old tip for removing hair dye from skin? Cigarette ash mixed with a little bit of water! (Ewww!)
  • Don’t be scared to call the number on the box if you have any questions, that is what they are there for!

For more hair colouring at home tips and tricks:

Do you dye your hair at home? Have you got any tips of the home trade?Get The Best Out Of Hair Colouring At Home

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