Home Coloring Your Gray Hair – What Product Should You Use?

The previous blog discussed the decision to color your gray hair or not. If you have chosen to color and plan to do so at home, what over-the-counter product works best? I’m no expert but the folks that run Consumer’s Union and publish the Consumer’s Report magazine are- in respect to putting products through rigorous tests and comparisons to see which ones perform best. In their May 2010 issue they turned their magnifying glasses to “Hair Dyes” and based their scores on:

  • gray coverage
  • ease of use
  • features

Clairol Textures & Tones, a product designed for women of color, came out in the lead with L’Oreal Paris Superior Preference running a close second. Both are permanent colors. If it’s a semi-permanent color you want Clairol Natural Instincts, came in third. Incidentally, it’s important to use the conditioning products that come packaged with these dyes to get the best result. They are designed to lay the hair’s cuticle back down and make the color last better.

If you want to manage your own hair coloring, it’s important not to stray too far from your natural coloring. If your skin has been determined to be distinctly cool choose an ash or neutral/natural hair color tone. If your skin has been determined to be distinctly warm choose a warm or neutral/natural color. Warm hair colors next to cool skin tones will conflict and undermine the clarity and glow of the skin. Ditto for cool hair colors next to warm skin tones.  Some people have skin tones that strattle the line between warm and cool. I call them neutral. In that case, you can safely try colors on either side of the fence. People with warm skin tones in their youth can become more neutral with age as skin becomes thinner. But warm skin will not likely ever become cool. Cool skin will not likley ever become warm. Know your skin tones “temperature” before choosing to color your hair. Or tell your salon professional what it is if he or she suggests you try a color that you know will be at odds with it. Most hair colorists are not taught to test clients for skin tone. They are taught to color hair. Some believe that any color can work on you as long as you change your makeup. That works in Hollywood……sort of. But not for most people who don’t want to have to wear a mask of makeup in order for a new hair color to seem like it belongs to the face that is wearing it.

Stay tuned to the next blog…..So You Want To Be a Redhead

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