Tips for Vivid Hair Color

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Do you like my snazzy use of Photoshop skillz?

It's been a bit since I've shown my face on the blog.  School's starting up soon, and I'm sure to bombard you with outfit posts then, since I have to "dress up" again on a regular basis. (my summer outfit posts would probably be all "hey here's the jeans and t-shirt I wore THIS day!")

So, here's a couple I took only a few minutes before sitting down to write this:

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NO PURPLE!  Oh noes!  I've had purple pretty much for-ev-er, and I just felt like it was time for a change, so I had Megan make me teal instead, and just on one chunky side instead of my "headband" of purple. It looks pretty dark in this picture, but I just had it touched-up two days ago.  I find that as it lightens, it gets brighter.  I've also graduated from straight-out-of-the-tube violet to a custom mix of blue and green.  Snazzy.

I've had lots of different colors in my hair over the years, starting with high school, when I used to use those semi-permanent hair dyes to make my hair purplish-red.  (By the way, does anyone remember what those were called?  I'm talking 1995-7ish... Was it Herbal Essences?  It was touted as "washes out in 28 days"...)

Now, I've graduated to colors like teal, purple, pink, and blue (see below for examples!).

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I know there's a large section of the blogging world that's quite familiar with "vivid" colors already, but I'm always surprised by the number of questions I get when I'm out and about IRL regarding my hair.  Usually it starts with "Is that your real hair?"  To which I reply, "Um, yes, it's my REAL hair, but the color isn't real..."

Another fun fact that most people are unaware of is the fact that most people will need to BLEACH their natural hair before they can dye it with a vivid color.  In fact, my former colored stripe was just bleach for a long time, including for my wedding (see photo in upper left corner above).

This leads me to some tips/things to know for having vivid hair color:
  1. Unless you are very comfortable using bleach (I am NOT), go to a salon and have your bleach done by a professional.  As mentioned in other posts, I get mine done by Megan at Floyd's 99 in LaGrange.
  2. THERE IS NO SUCH THING AS A PERMANENT VIVID COLOR.  We can do all other sorts of amazing things with our scientific knowledge, but apparently this eludes us.  The "most" permanent one I've ever found is Pravana Vivids.  But it's still only about 2-3 weeks at most until I feel the need to touch up.
  3. You can touch-up your vivid color at home in-between having your roots bleached (which is what I do).  But I find that the brands of vivid color you'll find at Sally or Hot Topic is no good (just my opinion, some people swear by them!).  Supposedly Pravana is only available to professionals, but if you do a little internet searching, you can find someplace to snag some.
  4. On days that you dye your hair with the vivid color, wear a dark t-shirt.  Use a dark pillowcase, or put a towel on your pillow.  Some of it does have a tendency to rub off.
  5. If you touch-up at home, wear rubber gloves when applying.  Cover your area with an old towel. Wear crappy clothes.
  6. Bleach/comet cleanser will clean your sink and/or tub after you rinse out your hair and freak out because you think you've ruined your bathroom forever.
  7. The first time you wash your hair with shampoo, it'll bleed all over your hands. This will ruin your manicure if you paint your nails a light/pastel color, so you might want to wait to get your nails done until after this.
  8. Buy dark bathroom towels, or designate one towel your "hair towel" for drying your hair, because (again) it'll probably rub off and get all over stuff.

Now, if you're still excited about vivid hair color, here's how to keep it looking good for as long as possible between touch-ups:
  1. Keep the dye on for an hour or so, if possible.  When I'm at the salon, we go 30 minutes, but when I touch up at home, I pile it all up on my head and continue about my business so it sits for an hour or more before I rinse it out. 
  2. Use cold water, or as cold as you can stand, when rinsing or washing your hair.  I'm actually kind of bad at this one...
  3. Wash your hair as little as possible. I can now go about 3 days between washings, thanks to the miracle of dry shampoos and a well-placed top knot on day 3.  And I have oily hair, so maybe if you're not in my condition, you can go longer.  Good for you!
  4. Do NOT go swimming in a chlorine pool!  Or, if you do, don't get your hair wet!  This will suck the color right out.
  5. Use a gentle shampoo, or shampoo specifically for color-treated hair.  I've shared my fave below.
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Here are some of my personal favorite hair products - some specific to having vivid hair color, some not:
    1 - Aveeno Pure Renewal Shampoo(sulfate-free, good for colored hair)
    2 - Aveeno Pure Renewal Conditioner
    3 - Not Your Mother's Clean Freak Refreshing Dry Shampoo
    4 - Got2b Powder'ful Volumizing Styling Powder
    5 - Osis Gelastic Ultra Strong Flex Gel 

P.S. If you're interested, you can find a more detailed review of my hair product/styling routine here.

Rock on,
Jen @ Hell Razor
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  1. I am six weeks out from my last color. I was just going to call my stylist to book my appointment when I had this thought “why”? I’ve never thought about NOT coloring my gray but for some reason, today, I wanted to be true to myself. I didn’t call. I’m going silver. I’m going to be my authentic self. Yay! how to do hair dye

  2. I am six weeks out from my last color. I was just going to call my stylist to book my appointment when I had this thought “why”? I’ve never thought about NOT coloring my gray but for some reason, today, I wanted to be true to myself
    Henna Hair Dye


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