Top colourists take the season’s hottest hue in completely different directions.
Ultra violet has been named the Pantone Color of 2018. How will this translate into the world of hair colour? We asked two Contessa winners their thoughts on the hue that’s definitely not for shrinking violets.
Purple is one of those amazing high-trend shades that can be used as a pure all-over colour to give
hair that coveted fashion edge, looks fantastic when diluted to an almost imperceptible lilac wash, and can also be interpreted as a shadow root effect on silvery blonde hair.
1. The Full-On Fashion Statement
The ideal client for this shade is someone who has an outgoing, sparkling personality, and is not timid about experimenting with hair colour. “I don’t like segregating clients into age categories, which I find restrictive, so this person can be 20 or 55 years old,” says Michelle Pargee, Goldwell North American guest artist and a multiple Contessa winner, including Master Colourist of the Year. “When I do a solid monochromatic ultra violet look, I like using different tones. Roots can be deep purple, the middle and ends might be enhanced with a blue-based purple, and then a brighter purple might be dispersed throughout, in panels.”
Because it’s a very versatile colour, violet can be mixed with different shades, including coppers, for high contrast. “When you’re working with opposing colours, it creates a very edgy effect. Also, if you’re colour blocking it definitely creates an explosion of colour that punches,” explains Jean- Sébastien Chalut, a Revlon Professional platform artist and also the 2018 Contessa winner for Quebec Hairstylist of the Year who won the title with
a collection (a collaboration with Tim Kuo and Loretta Tom, both also from Revlon Professional) featuring an intense violet. “For a great upkeep of the shade between appointments, I recommend my clients use Nutri Color Creme 200 Violet to refresh dulled hues and bring back a fabulous shine.”
2. Testing Out the Trend
“Ultra violet isn’t a full-on purple. It’s much more sophisticated and is cooler with a subtle blue undertone. I have been in love with this colour for many years and featured it not only in my collections, but my own hair too. It complements most skin tones, so anyone can wear it”, says Pargee.
“Surprisingly, violet hair colour suits many different skin tones and a wide array of natural hair colours, particularly if you want to use it as an accent,” echoes Chalut.
For the average client who wants to test the waters of purple hair, Pargee recommends a type of placement in peek- a-boo panels that can be seen in the natural movement of hair, or pop up (and become more pronounced) when the hair is in a ponytail or an updo. She adds that Colorance by Goldwell has a semi-permanent pastel indigo and pastel lavender shades that, “when mixed together in equal parts, make a gorgeous ultra violet perfect for those who want less commitment. It’s a true semi-permanent and slowly washes out. It also makes a great root shade on very pale blonde hair.”
3. The Poetic Pastel Option
For a more subtle result, violet is very easy to incorporate in delicate strands when added to strategic areas for an elegant, understated effect, says Chalut. Another way to achieve this is to apply the colour tone on tone. “And if you want to be even more discreet, apply the shade with a babylights technique, which will give your client a very faint tint of violet,” he says.
Having a clean “silverized” base of level nine or 10 hair is important to achieve the correct pale violet. “The colour needs to be on pale hair that doesn’t have strong gold tones to show its full potential,” Pargee says. “Applied in a glaze or very fine babylights will add just the right touch of glimmer for the client who’s timid about this new shade.” Subtle violet highlights are also lovely for those wanting to experience this trend without going overboard.
Grey hair? It’s a fabulous base to add on any shade of violet! “If the client has salt and pepper hair, purple blends in almost naturally,” says Chalut. Pargee agrees, “I love pastel violets in grey because it’s flattering on most skin tones, but it’s always important to make sure you are applying it to a level nine or 10, adding add a bit of grey pigment to cool it down.”