Friday, 5 October 2012

12 Tips for Colour Removal and Correction

1. A hair colourremover and a hair colour stripper are very different.  

A colour remover contains a sulphite agentwhich works only on destroying the artificial colour molecule so it can beflushed from the hair, it cannot affect natural pigments present.  A stripper contains a peroxide agent and isdesigned to gently remove both natural and artificial pigments so you canre-colour immediately to a different or lighter permanent shade.

2. Fading unintentionally dark hair colour.

If you haveapplied a colourant and it’s too dark wash it in baby or clarifying shampooseveral times immediately.  Most homehair colours contain an after colour conditioner which is designed to help thecolour molecules settle inside the hair. If you are not sure if you are happy with the colour, washing it willremove any barriers (from the conditioner) and unsettle the new permanentcolour.

3. Removing colour sooner rather than later.

If a colour istoo dark, try to remove it immediately or within 48 hours.  The fresher an artificial colour the quickerit will remove from the hair (especially if you have already washed andclarified it several times with baby or clarifying shampoo).  New unwanted darker hair colourants onlyrequire a hair colour remover, they shouldn’t need a hair colour stripper. 

4. Fixing hair colour that is too light.

If a colour hascome out too light (for your liking) try to do the opposite as to darkercolours and wait at least 48 hours before attempting to re-colour, ideallywaiting one week.  Lightened hair canlook brighter when first coloured and will often calm done over the followingdays, so judgement should be reserved before attempting to go darker.

5. Balancing warm tones in hair colour.

If a shade hascome out too warm, golden, coppery or gingery work out if you have applied acolourant which contains (gold, copper or red) as one of its tones or whetheryour hair has lightened in the colouring process and ‘kicked up’ your naturalwarmth.  If you have applied a neutral orash based colourant and are seeing warmth it’s because your own shade was toodark for the colourant applied and possibly needed pre-lightening or strippingfirst.

6. Use colour remover to remove unwanted tones.

If you haveestablished a shade applied and it has caused your hair to go warm, golden, copper orred due to the secondary tones featured in the product applying a hair colourremover should rectify this issue.

7. Options for covering unwanted shades.

If you haveestablished a shade applied has caused your hair to go warm, golden, copper orred due to the lightening of your natural shade you need to make a choice as towhether you want to strip the hair and apply the desired shade again (onto alighter base) or whether you wish to go to a slightly darker shade which wouldcover the unwanted warmth.

8. Do not apply aperoxide based colourant immediately after using a hair colour remover

Thechemistry of colour removal and peroxide contradicts - so you need to leave thehair ideally 1 week (to normalise) before attempting to apply a peroxide basedcolourant.  You can (however) use nonperoxide temporary colourants and toners after using a hair colour remover.

9. Stripper creates a blank canvas for recolouring.

Hair that hasbeen stripped has seen both natural and artificial colour pigment removed fromthe hair, therefore you should always have your selected subsequent colourantshade at hand to achieve your desired result after the stripping process.

10. Retaining a good base shade.

The key to asuccessful hair colour is mostly achieving a good base shade.  If you are looking to go blonde, obtaining adark blonde base shade can prove a good canvas for highlights.  If you prefer darker (brunette hair) alwaysensure you apply colourants only to your re-growth and do not apply throughoutthe hair.  This will prevent buildup.  Using toners and colour enhancingshampoos will also retain your shade and do not attempt to use severalpermanent colourant processes on your hair within at least a one monthperiod.  Very frequent exposure toperoxides, ammonia and PPD’s can cause the hair to become very porous anddamaged.  Once hair becomes damaged it isthen difficult to achieve a good colourant result as the shade could grabinitially and appear too dark (or patchy) and then fade fast over subsequentwashes. 

11. Fashion colours can be difficult to remove.

Be aware thatfashion colours such as pink, blue and purple (and often bright red) do notwork on oxidation (peroxide) technology to evoke a long term result; insteadthey are a ‘direct dye’ which stains the hair. If the hair is bleached these direct dye molecules can stain the hairand make the shade impossible to remove. A hair colour remover is not designed to remove direct (fashion)dyes.  A stripper may have more successbut always give a strand test first.

12. Clarifying hair to improve results. 

Prior to anyhair colour removal, stripping or correction clarify the hair fully.  Even if you have just conditioned the hair,there may be a barrier on the surface which will prevent removal, stripping orcorrection working effectively.  If yousee absolutely no hair colour change from a removal or a stripping treatment theremay be a chance your hair has silicone damage. Here the hair has been encased in a silicone which quite often has beenmoulded to the hair by heat.  In theseinstances follow the blog advice for ‘Hair Clarifying’.  

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