My friend Erica’s natural color from the roots down to the lighter ends is a level 5 or 6, and the ends are from a high-lift tint she had done a couple years ago. So now, she wants an all-over blonde that will tone her hair to a warmer, richer hue.
To achieve this, I am using an ammonia-free permanent formula from Ion Color Brilliance. After some research, I found that the new ammonia-free permanent dyes launching from lots of brands use an ammonia alternative called MEA, or monoethanolamine, to lift the hair up to three levels. They are designed to gently open the cuticle with an oil base to allow the color molecules in the hair shaft, and with heat during processing, they activate. The developers for these dyes use hydrogen peroxide for lift, but without ammonia.
There are a few things you need to know about this process:
- Your natural color determines the outcome. Do not expect your hair to go from black to blonde with this type of application. It is designed to lift up to three levels, which depends on your porosity and natural color.
- Color does not lift color. If you already have dye in your hair, do not expect it to remove or displace it; that’s not how it works. You have to get a color correction process from a stylist.
- Do not guess. See a stylist for consultation. Even if you don’t book the service, you need to hear what it will take to get the color you want by a professional who can see your hair in person.
- Read “To Dye Or Not To Dye” here on my blog…because I love you all and do not want you to destroy your hair!
Products and tools:
- Ion Color Brilliance Ammonia-Free Permanent Dye in 8G-Light Golden Blonde
- Ion Color Brilliance Ammonia-Free Developer, 32 Volume
- Colortrack Silicone Whisk
- Colortrak Highlighting Wand
- Trader Joe’s Nourish Spa Shampoo and Conditioner
- Ion Color Defense After-Color Sealer
- Aveda Brilliant Damage Control
- Lottabody Love Me 5-n-1 Miracle Creme
- Lottabody Shape Me Custard Gelée
- Carol’s Daughter Marula Softening Serum
With color application, conditioning and styling, total time was two and a half hours.
Keep and care:
To maintain this style Erica will sleep in the pineapple and on a satin pillowcase, then fluff in the morning. She can re-twist sections in a few days, but knowing her, it will be swept into a bun later in the week until washday.
To maintain the color, she will use sulfate-free shampoo, cover her hair with the Aveda Brilliant Damage Control or she can use ApHogee Restructurizer, when she swims or will be in the sun, and carry on with her wash-n-go routine as usual (she uses Mixed Chicks Leave-In Conditioner regularly). I do expect this color to fade over time, as all dyes do, but I am sure it will do so gracefully. (See more tips for color treated hair.)