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    Can I get my natural hair color back?

    Chart of 24 different hair color swatches

    Michelle Asks about Natural Hair Color:

    I dyed my hair a light copper brown and got some blonde high lights. I highly dislike the hair color choice because I wanted a darker brown hair color and not what I actually had done. I was wondering if there is any possible way I can get my natural hair color back which is a medium brown, and how long should I wait to get it dyed to my natural hair color?


    Have you dyed your hair and are unhappy with the results? When it comes to corrective hair coloring or hair dye stripping, each case is unique, because no two hair genetics are exactly alike. In Michelle’s case she will be doing a tint-back which is an easier process than correcting a hair color that is too dark, but still tricky. These questions need to be answered:

    Do you have regrowth (roots) showing?

    • Yes? Then the roots will need to be treated separately from the rest of your hair. It helps for a hair colorist to see about an inch of regrowth to match that as closely as possible. Seeing that you want the hair color darker, the hair colorist would use a formula that will work best for tinting back the hair color that exists now. It takes some know-how to get this right, not only in the formula, but also in the application. You could do a lot more damage by trying to correct this yourself. The condition of your hair can only be assessed by someone taking a look at it. My guess is it can withstand another hair color treatment at this point.
    • No? Then you may be able to get help by calling the company hotline on the back of the box of hair color you bought. They will ask you a number of questions about your hair history and its present state. It is extremely important that you tell them exactly what you have done. This is the time to confess all of your error. Especially those that you are reluctant to admit. They will recommend the best route to take from the information you give them. Don’t do anything unless you are clear that the information you gave them was correct.




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    Brassy Hair Color Mistakes

    Miley Cyrus with brassy hair highlights

    Home Hair Coloring Results in Brassy Hair Highlights!

    Whitney asks

    I just high lighted my hair with lighter blonde streaks. I have dark blonde dyed hair with lighter streaks. Naturally my hair colour is brown so i just high light the roots but, they turned out brassy. I usually get them done at the salon but i wanted to save money. I’m afraid now it will cost double what it would have been. I don’t want to dry my hair out and do a hair coloring right away, or get rid of some the streaks that are already there. I just want my hair back with my darker roots! Please help me!


    It sounds like the chemical wasn’t on your hair long enough to effectively lift enough of your own natural hair coloring out. The problem you have now is best treated by a professional. Don’t color over your roots again or you will be adding more problems. The brassy streaks and your own virgin hair would grab the hair color differently, and the brassy streaks could turn a nasty muddy hair color.

    My best suggestion for you is to go to a beauty school that has a good reputation and let them fix your hair color dilemma. If you are near a good-sized metropolitan area, you may have a couple of choices. You could choose to go to a ‘advanced training center’ for your hair color correction or you could go to a regular beauty school.

    At the ‘advanced training center’ you would have a licensed hairdresser, who is receiving this training, work on your hair. Usually these schools are owned by a reputable hair salon in your area and they stand behind their work. They do all services at approximately half the price you would pay at your regular hair salon. I have seen lots of good work come from two of these schools in my area.

    Hair coloring correction at your regular beauty school may or may not be done. I would call in advance and let them know your problem. They won’t take you unless they are willing to show the students how to fix your specific hair coloring issue. The service would probably cost less here than the advanced training school and you can count on it taking longer.

    One more thing, have this corrected before new roots grow in . . . it will make life easier!



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    My Black Hair Color is a Mistake!

    Black Hair

    Black hair color looks like “shoe polish.” Help!!

    Annette writes:
    “I have used black hair color on my hair at age 54. What was I thinking? It seems risky to high light hair that has been colored black. I would like to high light this black hair color to break it up and get rid of this ‘shoe polish look’ and I am currently using a harsh shampoo to fade it slowly. What do you suggest, since my gray re-growth will be coming in soon making it look worse? Help!”

    Kristle  answers;
    Annette, let me first say that you are not alone with this black hair color dilemma. Black hair color looks harsh on many people and good on a few, but many people continue to make the mistake of coloring their hair black at home. There are a couple of ways to fix this solution:

    • Black Hair Color Solution 1:Have a professional hairdresser heavily high light hair with a lightened like bleach and then tone the lightened strands to a very dark brown, giving the hair an overall lighter appearance. Unless your hair is already quite damaged from previous chemical treatments, this process shouldn’t ravage your hair. Just be sure to fully explain to the hairdresser what you have done to your hair and what you are trying to achieve as an  end result.
    • Black Hair Color Solution 2:If you want your black hair color gone and replaced with a lighter hair color, another suggestion might be to try a hair color remover. A hair color remover is best done by a professional hairdresser, although you can pick up a DIY version from your local beauty supply store. The hair color remover works to break up the hair color molecules and lightens hair. You then need to recolor hair to a desired hair color. For DIY readers out there, I would suggest using a shade of hair color that is one shade lighter than what you want to achieve in the end.

    The reason I first suggest getting this process done by a professional is that hair color remover can be unpredictable in the outcome. It needs to be applied evenly and watched closely as to when it should be taken off the hair. You need to lift out the right amount of color from your hair and deposit a color that works with your new strand hair color.  A professional has experience with this type of color correction and can control the hair color more so than if you were to do it at home.

    Annette, as far as your gray hair re-growth is concerned, I would first suggest choosing either solution above for a temporary fix for your black hair color. Then, as your gray grows in, use a demi-permanent hair color, like Redken Shade, to color the re-growth. This will blend in grays as they appear, while allowing the rest of the color to grow out.

    Black Hair Color

    Keep in mind that whenever you are doing several chemical processes like this within a short span of time, it is a good idea to also do a deep conditioner or protein conditioning treatment for your hair to maintain the integrity of the hair. Try one like Joico’s K-Pak Deep Penetrating Reconstructor, which leaves the hair feeling soft and revitalized.

    Barb has an black hair color article that might help as well.

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