Need help with hair color!

A few months ago I got my gray covered at a cheapo salon and I felt it came out too dark (or maybe just too flat, since it did seem to match my roots!). So I went to a good salon and the gal there has done highlights on me twice. So now quite a bit of the dark stuff is bleached.

It looks nice, but I feel like repeated bleaching is damaging it too much, and the time and money to highlight every 6 weeks is also beyond what I want to invest.

So, could I just buy some Nice & Easy or something, in a color close to my natural one but maybe a shade or two lighter, and cover the highlights (and my gray) at home? I know the new color can’t “lift” whatever remains of the dark dye, but the highlights are so extensive there isn’t too much left, and I’m going pretty dark anyway, so some slight variation is OK.

I also imagine I’d damn well better do some test locks to find out how fast my porous bleached hair will soak up the color, so I don’t wind up way darker than I want.

I’ve asked the stylist who’s done the highlights, but she has been a little vague, and of course, somewhat biased toward her doing whatever rather than me doing it at home. But I know I’ve seen some good, experienced advice on tricky hair color situations here before, so I’m hoping y’all have some help for me!

(And yeah, I’m posting about perfume and hair within five minutes of each other - I think deciding we’re not having more kids has finally kicked me out of “there’s a baby attached to me” survival mode back into “I’m a girl!” mode.)

It’s hard to say for sure without seeing it, but yes, I think a semi-permanent dye would be fine over the highlights.

I’ve done it, it faded really quickly but for a quick fix it was fine. You’re smart to do a test because it will probably come out much darker than expected.

Be brave, just do it :smiley:

Moved Cafe Society --> IMHO.

I’ve been home-coloring my hair for a long time. I wash my hair daily, and permanent color seems to last 3-4 weeks, tops. Semi-permanent, maybe 2-3 weeks. I usually go with permanent so it lasts longer.

NOTE: I am not a hair stylist, this is my personal opinion - stylists please correct me if I’m saying anything that’s incorrect…

The main difference I have found seems to be that permanent color usually has ammonia; that seems to lighten the hair a bit, then the dye is laid on top. Once the dye fades out, the hair underneath is a little bit lighter, which may or may not be good for you. If you choose a color that doesn’t contain ammonia, it is less likely to change the underlying hair color. I hear that the ammonia can also be drying/damaging to hair, although I’ve not noticed a big problem with that.

My hair is naturally dark brown with coppery tones (“chestnut”, I"ve been told), so it tends to turn coppery when the dye wears out, and it’s not attractive, so I’m stuck in a cycle of re-coloring to cover the faded color (and cover grey). If I dye my hair dark brown, it is always too dark and looks flat, as you described. I’ve taken to using dark ash blonde color, which takes out the coppery tones without drastically changing the main hair color. I’d suggest going a couple tones lighter than your “natural” color, just so it doesnt’ get too dark.

Most manufacturers have a help-line where you can call to get advice on which color to choose and answer questions.

I personally like Preference and Excellence by L’Oreal (I am not sure what the difference is), but my favorite is Perfect 10 - easy to use, only takes 10 minutes (compared to 30 minutes for some other brands). Perfect 10 is a little more expensive (around $12, compared to $8 for the L’Oreal brands), but if you have a coupon and/or watch the sales, you can get a bargain.