Every spring I become obsessed with natural red hair color, the kind of bright orange color typically only seen on young girls who’ve already managed to snag a considerable amount of hours in the spring sunshine. Growing up my little sister was a red-head, so I’ve spent a long time inspecting the subtle nuances that make up that perfect yet oh-so-hard to achieve “natural” red.
As anyone who’s ever had their hair colored will tell you, artificial pigment usually lacks the subtle dimension and glimmer-like shine of natural color that has been exposed to the sun. Until now. With improvements to artificial color molecules and the systems which deliver them into your hair, virgin quality shine and dimension are possible for those of us that just aren’t blessed with epic natural hair color.
The amount of shine present in the hair after coloring is one of the major give-away’s that the hair has been “treated”. A natural “low” shine is better than a high gloss shine if your intention is to fool, but too minimal reflection will look unhealthy, and like you have colored your hair at home. Always talk with your colorist about how much shine you are expecting to receive from a service. If you are between color appointments and your color still looks good but is lacking luster, head to the salon for a shine treatment.
The tonality of the pigment in your hair color or gloss is the most important aspect in the quest to achieve a natural appearance to red hair. The spectrum of what it could mean to have “red” hair is incredibly vast, ranging from orange to red-violet with a million variations in between. Any time a “natural” vibe is wanted, having a strong golden or orange base to your red formulation will be suggested. A common misconception here is that depending on your skin and eye color, these tones won’t “look good” on you. False. An experienced colorist can come up with an appropriate red for your specific pallet, without having to direct you into the realm of more violet-based reds, which never look natural.
Always discuss your intentions for a color change with your colorist, do’t assume they know what you’re going for, even if they usually do. Most importantly of all though, is as always, how your treat your new color at home. Red is lumped in with other fickle colors like blues and purples in that the pigments molecules will fall out of your hair quicker and more easily than darker colors. Talk to your colorist about maintaining this shade before your leave the salon, without the proper UV protection, your color will begin degenerating the moment you leave.
Happy Spring Loves!