The dos and don’ts for giving clients more vibrant hair colour.
With colourists being asked more often to create customized shades for their clients, it’s not surprising to see an expanding range of tools becoming available, too.
“Fun, vibrant colours are really in for this season,” says Karine Jacques, international artistic director for Oligo Professionnel, which recently launched a range of vivid KOKO shades. “The great thing about these shades is that they give colourists the opportunity to create new options that give more dimension to an already existing colour or create a ‘wow’ factor with an all-over, intense pigment,” says Jacques.
Ready to get to work? Check out this our list of helpful suggestions when punching up your client’s hue.
Do… Prelighten hair properly.
To achieve the right amount of “pop” with these vibrant colours, the key is to prelighten hair to the correct level. For purples and pinks, take it to a level 8 or 9. For teals and reds, aim for a level 6 or 7. “On natural tones, levels 7, 8 and 9 will get the most vibrancy and punch out of the colour,” says Gerard Caruso, artistic director for Rusk and owner of Salon G in Hackensack, N.J., of using Rusk DeepShine Direct’s six new Intense Direct shades. Another more subtle shade idea is casting the vibrant shades over a level 4 or 5 for a downplayed, but interesting tone.
Don’t… Be afraid to experiment with.
Many of the new lines include a white shade as well. This can be used as a toner or to help eliminate unwanted gold tones from blondes. Colourists can also use it with the vibrant shades to downplay the intensity.
As another option for creating those much-coveted pastel shades, Caruso recommends mixing one part vibrant shade with two parts of any white-based conditioner. Vibrant shades can also be intermixed, for instance a red and yellow to create orange or purple and red for fuschia. “You can use these highly pigmented shades as highlights, to incorporate dazzling flashes of colour or to tone them down a bit with a neutral to create those trendy pastel shades, as well,” says Jacques. “It’s a question of how far your client wants to go.”
Do… Create custom hair extensions.
For clients that want to experiment, but not permanently, Caruso has found a booming business in creating custom hair extensions. Colourists at his salon have been taking human hair wefts at level 9 and then dying them to create temporary, custom hair pieces that can be glued or clipped in. “Bright colours are not what they were when they came out years ago,” says Caruso. “Then, it was more avant-garde, and it’s become more fashionable now. You can just lighten a piece in the fringe and weave colour into that area only. It creates more dimension and accents in the haircut.”
Don’t… Send your client away without home care.
While it’s important for any colour client, it’s especially critical for those wearing bright shades. “The trick to working well with these high-intensity pigments is to perfectly follow the instructions, especially when it comes to developing time, and then making sure your client is using an at-home routine that will protect her colour effectively to avoid fading and losing that nice vibrancy,” says Jacques.
Photos: Melanie Bourne’s Contessa 25 Finalist Canadian Colourist collection.