Pro Logic: Fear No Red Haircolor With These Transition Tips Wednesday 01 May, 2013
Making the leap to being a redhead takes some thought. Luckily, celebrity hairstylist Ammon Carver has nailed down the do’s and don’ts to get you red the right way.
In my “grown-up” years (any time after the age of 21), I’ve been some version of redhead more often than I’ve been anything else. But going red is possibly one of the hardest beauty transitions to take on. Why? The upkeep is difficult, to put it mildly. Red dye molecules are notoriously finicky; they don’t like to stay put in your hair strand, so the color fades in vibrancy at a much faster pace than, say, a faux brunette. But, if the countless hairdressers I’ve spoken to are to be believed (and why shouldn’t they be?), going titian is the preferred hair hue of choice this spring. (Further proof: Such beauties as Megan Fox, Dianna Agron and Rachel McAdams have taken the sanguine plunge!) So, if the crimson tide is a-coming, you need to arm yourself with some do’s and don’ts on transitioning to red. And, you’re in luck! Celebrity stylist and Matrix Artistic Director Ammon Carver is going to give them to you.
It only makes sense that changing your haircolor will effect your skin tone, so you want to choose a red hue that complements your skin, rather than fights against it. “I go by a basic rule of thumb with red selection: If you have olive undertones in your skin, a cool red shade is going to look best. If your skin has a pink undertone, then stick with warm, coppery reds,” says Ammon. “Either way, cool or warm, the reds should look natural and rich—never punk.”
He recommends: If you’re seeking box color, try L’Oréal Paris Féria Power Reds. Want warm, copper red? Use R68 (Rich Auburn). Looking for something cooler? Try R37 (Deep Burgundy). But if you don’t trust your own hand to take you to red, visit a salon pro. Ammon points to Matrix COLORINSIDER Precision Permanent Color, an ammonia-free, permanent haircolor that maximizes high-definition color results with minimum stress to the hair’s cuticle, as a great dye to bring you healthy, scarlet strands.
Proof positive that red hair dye likes to skip town on strands? The bottom of my shower curtain, which, when I go redhead, takes on a soft shade of rose. But since you simply can’t stop washing your hair altogether (but, why not? she whines), Ammon advises, “Use cool water when washing your hair, skip days between washes, and always, always, always use a color-safe shampoo and conditioning system. This is most important with reds, as the key to rocking the shade is keeping it vibrant.” True that!
He recommends: Alba Botanica Hawaiian Colorific Plumeria Shampoo and Conditioner, which is free of color-stripping sulfates and drying salts. What they do include: vitamin-rich Plumeria, Pinneapple and Papaya, and the conditioner also has Jojoba, Kukui and Macadamia to nourish over-processed or damaged hair cuticles.
Another way to keep your crimson dye job in the vibrant zone: Use a clear at-home glaze after your color service. The sooner you do it, the better your chances of keeping the intensity of your dye job longer.
He recommends: Oscar Blandi At-Home Salon Glaze, which, when used weekly, prevents color fading and adds moisture, brightens natural and color-treated hair, and protects hair from heat damage.
If washing your hair too much (even with color-safe formulas) will strip your hair of it’s new red hue, what’s a greasy-scalp girl supposed to do? Turn to dry shampoo, of course! And though you may blanch at the idea—after all, doesn’t dry shampoo serve to make your hair look more matte, which is the opposite of vibrant and shiny?—new dry shampoo formulas promise not to dull your strands as they sap away the grease.
He recommends: Drybar Detox Dry Shampoo, which absorbs oils while adding body and lift with no color-dulling residue.
Listen: Red isn’t for everyone, so think your transition through. “If your hair is dark, chances are you’ll need to lighten your hair before you color it, which can be a bit more damaging,” says Ammon. “Minimize the stress by using moisturizing, repairing and hydrating products.” Have light hair? “You’ll likely need what is called a filler, a preliminary deposit of color on your hair that will enable it to hold the final red tone,” he says. “By filling and coloring your hair in one day, you are committing to keeping you hair red (or at least a darker shade) for a while, making regular touch-ups important, too.” Talk through your options with a colorist, and see if you’re ready to make the long-term commitment.
He recommends: MATRIX Total Results Color Care Miracle Treat 12 Lotion Spray, which will help strengthen compromised hair (those who were dark, and chose to pre-lighten their hair for the ensuing red), making it silkier and more manageable. Blondes can keep their roots in check with Oscar Blandi Pronto Colore Root Touch-Up & Highlighting Pen in Warm Reddish Brown, which affords seamless coverage with just a few swipes.
So, are you ready to go red? Now that you’re armed with Ammon’s do’s and don’ts, taking the crimson leap should be a cinch!
Have you recently gone redhead? Share your maintenance tips in the comments!