Hair dyeing

I am going to dye my hair on the weekend. Right now it is a light brown (natural) and I’m going to a dark brown/auburn colour. I’ve done the really dark brown before, and really liked the results.

The other night I went to the pharmacy to get the dye and they didn’t have the colour I wanted so the lady at the Cosmetics counter picked out 2 colours and told me to mix 1/2 and 1/2 & save the remaining halves and activator for next time.

Has anyone done this? Were the results what you were looking for? I will do the strand test, but I’m looking for opinions on mixing colours. It’s L’Oreal colour, so it’s not the cheap stuff.

I do this with Clairol Natural Instincts and L’oreal Color Spa. Both are semi=permanent. (Not mixing brands, of course.) They have great reds that are just a little…um, half step removed from what I want. Professional colorists mix shades all the time.

I’m confused, did they simply not have the shade you wanted in stock, or the shade doesn’t exist at all? Couldn’t you try a beauty supply store for the right shade? That’s where I get mine usually–I bought a half-gallon of activator forever ago, and just need to go spend three or four dollars on the color when the mood strikes.

Not that mixing doesn’t work, or wouldn’t be fun. I guess I’d just worry that the second batch would be noticibly different than the first so you couldn’t really use it for touch-ups or roots without looking stripey.

I’ve never mixed in the 23 years of self coloring, but as long as you stay within the same brand, I don’t see any problems.

If you think Brand A or Brand B is expensive, call around to a bunch of salons to find out what they charge for coloring. You will faint.

To be able to color your hair for under $20, rather than $60 and up, is pocket change in the world of beauty.

First, check a beauty supply store. Sally Beauty is, I believe, nationwide, and it has a better selection of colors than most pharmacies. Most normal dyes should be mixed with 20-volume developer, and you’ll need to supply your own gloves and mixing bottle (both of which can also be bought at a beauty supply shop) but it’s considerably cheaper overall and you’ll have a much better selection.

Secondly, mixing colors is fine, but I would recommend that you not mix colors from different product lines or brands. It’s a great idea, though, if you can’t find the exact color you want (and if you’re willing to go to the trouble.) Just be very careful about the colors you select, since the undertones (the base color, blue or red or neutral or whatever) can occasionally combine in unpredictable ways.

I’d shop around until you find the color you want. If it’s your first time coloring your hair, it probably isn’t a good idea to mix colors yourself. Also, I wouldn’t go on the advice of someone from the drugstore. They aren’t qualified to give you that kind of advice.

Go to Sally Beauty or another beauty supply. It’s worth it to be 100% sure you are getting the right product.

When it comes to a dramatic color change, I would’nt trust over the counter advice.
I know there’s an 800 number on the color boxes you can call and ask their advice.

Don’t all hair color products come with the instruction not to save the leftovers?

You can’t save leftovers once the color has been mixed with the developer. Otherwise the chemical reaction continues and can cause the container to explode.
As long as the components remain unmixed, however, there’s no harm in saving extras.

Thanks for all the info everyone.

Just a couple of notes…

This is definately not the first time I have coloured my own hair. It’s the first time I have decided I wanted a dramatic change and decided to mix colours, of the same brand, to reach the desired colour.

I have yet to see the colour I am looking for. It’s…like a really dark auburn/brown.

I’m not going to go buy a big bottle of stuff from a beauty supply store. I colour my hair maybe once a year, let it grow out, leave it natural, and do it all over again. Even when I dyed my hair dark brown, it was hard to tell when it grew out.

My hair grows VERY fast, so even if I get a colour that isn’t great, it’ll grow out fast enough. I don’t really care what colour my hair is, at long as it’s not green or falls out :smiley:

I will call the 800 # on the box before I colour. I kept the receipts and the lady told me I could return them if they were unopened.

And last…I know salons are expensive. I got talked into highlighting my hair for summer a few years ago and ended up paying about $80 for the whole shebang. I’ll just stick with the cheap way…I just meant that I opted for the $15 L’oreal rather than the $8 No-name brand dyes.

I used to mix hair colour shades all the time … for the same reason, I just couldn’t find the exact shade that I wanted.

a) I always used the same brand, and colours in the same “family”
b) I have thick, shoulder length hair so I ended up using the entire mixture anyway.
c) I also figured that for $16 for two bottles, vs $80 at the salon, I could afford to not feel badly about throwing any extra mixture away. But yes, as long as they’re not mixed with the developer, you’ll be fine.

It worked fine for me - I wouldn’t worry about it at all. You mix them up pretty much the same - just put half of each into the developer bottle, shake it well, and off you go.

Have fun - it’s just hair! Nothing bad is going to happen - you’ll just have a shade that’s exactly what you want!


Just don’t drink and dye. Spoken from horrifying, tri-colored experience. :eek: