The do’s and don’ts of red hair

Red hair remains an evocative color. It’s vibrant, passionate and hard to miss. Only the bold are daring enough to choose it. When it comes to going red, especially for a first timer, it’s not as simple as chucking some hair dye on and hoping for the best. With red, there are a very particular set of dos’ and don’ts that you should adhere to for the best results.

Do book a consultation

Red is a dramatic change for anyone and as such it can be difficult to predict how the dye will interact with your own color and what result you will achieve. The best way to approach such a transition is to book a consultation with a stylist or, if you are unable to come into the salon, speak with us via phone or email (pictures are always useful!). Via consultation you can mitigate risk and manage expectations. There is a rainbow of red to choose from so this consultation process is useful to help you understand what shade you want, how to get it and how to make it last. This will help you be realistic about red hair.

Don’t go it alone

It can be tempting to buy a box dye and do a DIY job and you may even get a vibrant result, but box dyes tend to fade fast and if anything goes wrong, you’ll be left with damaged, unsightly hair. Box dyes also tend to show up rings of color where new applications have been added, creating a blocky, streaky look. It can be hard to predict how red will turn out and how it will look when it fades. If you are jumping from blonde, it’s even more vital to avoid making the leap on your own. You don’t want to risk ruining your own hair. Most people view red as a block of color but just like any color there are shades and nuances to enrich your red.

Do understand what going red means

Red hair involves commitment and maintenance. It is the most high maintenance hair color, second to blonde. The molecules in red dyes are so large that color hits and leaves the follicle quickly so that brilliant color you first get is quick to fade with time. This can be mitigated with products designed and intended for red hair and color treated red hair, but fade is inevitable. You will probably need to touch up the color every two to six weeks depending on your preference. You can often get a lovely fade with red which can be flattering but if you prefer the red-hot look, regular attendance at the salon is vital. As such, weigh up whether you can afford red and what kind of look you want (which will impact directly on the money you end up spending). If you’re informed, you’ll enjoy the process more.

Don’t go in blind

As we said, going red is a true commitment, more so than any other hair color. Don’t make a rash decision and blindly stroll into red territory. If you think you just want a temporary color or a pop of red, extensions or a semi-permanent color can be useful alternatives.

Do prepare for fade

As we mentioned, red hair fades fast. Although it can be upsetting when your dazzling color starts to tone down, you can prepare for it with products designed especially for red hair. These products keep hair glossy, shiny and brilliant. Avoid cheap store bought shampoos as the silicones and chemicals in these products strip color from hair. It is better to buy effective products rather than spend money in the salon just to fade it faster with poor hair management. Another way to manage fade is to embrace it. Red can diminish to soft, flattering embers which can look stunning (and more natural).  

Don’t mistreat your red!

Although red will fade on its own, there are things you can do that will speed up the process. Hot water, over-washing hair, cheap hair products, chlorine and excessive styling will all strip and fade color fast. If you’re going red, treat hair kindly. Invest in the right products, limit heat styling and wash hair as often as possible with cold water rather than hot. If you like to wash your hair daily, your fade will accelerate rapidly.

Embrace the red rainbow

There are a multitude of reds to enjoy from Emma Stone, Jessica Chastain, Sansa Stark from GOT, Geri Halliwell and Isla Fisher. There is a kind of red for everyone so bring pictures and show them during a consultation.

Don’t get stuck in fire truck red

Don’t get us wrong; fire truck red is awesome but don’t assume there is only one kind of red hair. There are so many and for a more day to day red, you’ll find a multitude of options to explore. Don’t think, ‘red hair isn’t for me.’ It truly is for everyone.