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View Full Version : New, and i've got a question!



shutterpillar
April 9th, 2012, 12:20 PM
First I just want to say I am SO thankful that I found this forum! What an amazing place with so much useful information!

I have a few questions for anyone who cares to answer them. But first, you may need a little background info about myself and my hair history.

For the past 10 years I have been experimenting with many different colors and cuts. My hair has been everything from a rainbow colored pixie cut to black and a few inches past BSL (which is the longest my hair has ever been in my life)
Needless to say, my hair is fried. There was one point in time where I grew out my natural color and chopped off all the nasty ends, but for reasons beyond explanation, I decided to start coloring it again.

Now, my question. My hair is currently about two inches past APL and is dyed an auburn red color which is pretty far from my natural color (an ashy brown) and is layered with my shortest layer being around chin length. Since I am planning to grow out my natural color and am going for hip length hair, I am wondering what would be the safest way to go about doing that. I have gotten it to a fairly healthy state for colored hair.... i have been letting it hair dry, have not been using my blow dryer or straightener or any heat at all. I also did a strand test and switched shampoos to something which was better suited to my hair type. I've been trying to keep it braided while I sleep and have been doing coconut oil treatments on it every so often. So far, my hair is the softest it has ever been while chemically colored.

Now, in order to go back to my natural color, I am wondering if I will need to dye it again so the rest of my hair will match my roots, and then continue to grow and slowly cut out the damaged bits. Is there a safe way to do this? Is there a better option out there? A bit of my hair is bleached (which was a horrible mistake I made last september) so stripping my hair of its color would most likely not be an option as there are still some bleached parts in there, and I have found that stripping it would probably more damaging to my hair than coloring it would be.

I am sorry this is so long, but I am just lost and need help! LOL. Does anyone have any opinions? Thank you in advance. :)

shutterpillar
April 9th, 2012, 12:22 PM
that should have been "air dry" up there, not "hair dry". LOL

Vallena
April 9th, 2012, 12:29 PM
You could dye your hair closer to your natural color, so it won't look so different as you grow it back out. This will still be somewhat damaging, but less noticeable. You could also just not dye any of it and let it grow, which would be less damaging, but will also draw more attention to the difference. At the end of the day, it comes out to what you prefer. Do you plan to eventually cut off all your current hair in favor of virgin hair?

Anje
April 9th, 2012, 12:31 PM
Well, the healthiest option for your hair is just to grow out the dye and live with being two-toned for a while. Some people consider that to be a viable option and others don't. If I were you, I'd probably have a professional colorist try to match my roots if the line of demarcation were strongly visible. If said colorist is willing to work with hair slathered with coconut oil, word is that it will reduce the damage that peroxide can cause to hair.

There are some color removers out there like Color Oops that I believe strip hair color without much damage, though they are rather drying. Better than bleaching color out, though. However, your hair underneath your auburn color is probably not going to match your roots, and the contrast is likely to be strong, at which point you're still going to want a colorist to help you get the best match to your roots possible.

Set up a few consultations, talk to different individuals, and find out what they need. They might want a minimum amount of roots to ensure that they can see the color well enough to get you a good match.

Kwaniesiam on this site is our resident expert on hair coloring. Ask her, listen to what she says. She won't steer you wrong.

shutterpillar
April 9th, 2012, 01:16 PM
Vallena, that is the plan! Though I am worried because I am beginning to get a few gray hairs. I have about 20 (that I can count) throughout my head, so I am wondering if I will be able to resist the urge to dye them in the long run. If they continue to be a silvery gray color like they are, then I think I can handle them. It's a pretty color. :)

I suppose if I ever feel the urge then I can try henna, but I am REALLY trying to stay strong and go for completely virgin hair.

heidi w.
April 9th, 2012, 01:25 PM
At some point, if you choose to go no color/no dye, you're going to simply have to go through the notion of you'll have two-tone hair for some duration of time. Coloring more until your natural color comes in kind of doesn't work.

I would recommend that for the duration you are coloring your hair, to use appropriate products on your hair such as color protecting shampoo and conditioner.

And possibly, later on, you may have to face the decision to just cut out some damage and/or color.

Given your goal is hip length hair, at some point, too, you will likely have to face allowing the shorter bits to grow out. If you allow all of your hair to grow longer, it will always be the same only in a longer format. You may have to decide at some point to trim the hemline at a certain point while the shorter bits are given time to simply catch up with the overall length. I am assuming that you want all one length hair, overall, and not shorter bits. If you want different lengths, then all is fine for now (different lengths of hair than hip-length hair.)

heidi w.

barely.there
April 9th, 2012, 01:26 PM
If you like the red and want to keep it for awhile, you can try henna/indigo. It will strengthen your hair :) (do your research first before using it!!!!!)

you could also try Cassia Obovata if you want something to strengthen your hair but not color it. I have the same hair color as you. greyish brown. Looked good when I was younger, but now it seems to repulse me :/

heidi w.
April 9th, 2012, 01:28 PM
Vallena, that is the plan! Though I am worried because I am beginning to get a few gray hairs. I have about 20 (that I can count) throughout my head, so I am wondering if I will be able to resist the urge to dye them in the long run. If they continue to be a silvery gray color like they are, then I think I can handle them. It's a pretty color. :)

I suppose if I ever feel the urge then I can try henna, but I am REALLY trying to stay strong and go for completely virgin hair.

I tend to advise to forego henna-ing. In the longer haul, henna'd hair can prove in time to be damaged hair because some henna's (and apparently this isn't true for all henna'd hair but trained stylists at GM salons would disagree) don't allow for optimum uptake of conditioner. That's the word in the salons and why many salons do not offer this type of coloring service.

Be sure to do a lot of homework regarding henna before making the decision. The hair can initially and for some time appear to be softer and all that, but I've met a number of folks who've henna'd their hair and in time, come to realize their hair is a bit damaged.

That's my experience, anyway. So, just exercise caution and look into the subject well.

heidi w.

shutterpillar
April 9th, 2012, 01:35 PM
Heidi, I know I will never get my exact natural hair color and it will be two-toned for quite a while. But, as it is red now and my natural color is nowhere close, that is why I was wanting to dye it this final time before letting it grow out and snip off the non-virgin hair as it grows. It wont be exact, but it will be a bit less noticeable than the red.

As for the layers... the last time I got my hair trimmed the woman made them WAY shorter than I told her to, so yes, I will be growing them out. I do want to keep some of the layers and ultimately have very long layers (my shortest possibly being BSL.) I have found that trimming 1/2 inch out of my hair every 3 months works best. That way I usually have about 3 inches of virgin growth every 3 months, not counting the 1/2 inch I cut off. (my hair grows pretty fast.) I will be having just the hemline trimmed in about 2 months in order to let my shorter layers have time to catch up a little.

I got some great shampoo/conditioner the other day and have been taking much better care of my hair overall for the past few months, so hopefully if I do dye it this one final time, it will not look quite so damaged afterwards.

Thank you everyone for the great advice and experience so far. :)

shutterpillar
April 9th, 2012, 01:38 PM
I tend to advise to forego henna-ing. In the longer haul, henna'd hair can prove in time to be damaged hair because some henna's (and apparently this isn't true for all henna'd hair but trained stylists at GM salons would disagree) don't allow for optimum uptake of conditioner. That's the word in the salons and why many salons do not offer this type of coloring service.

Be sure to do a lot of homework regarding henna before making the decision. The hair can initially and for some time appear to be softer and all that, but I've met a number of folks who've henna'd their hair and in time, come to realize their hair is a bit damaged.

That's my experience, anyway. So, just exercise caution and look into the subject well.

heidi w.


I had read that somewhere about henna (probably here), which is why I have always been a little put-off about using it. I just want to get away from dyes altogether.

cfreya
April 9th, 2012, 01:42 PM
I started from a similar point except all my hair was bleached
You can either let your hair grow out and just deal with the roots, slowly trimming all the dyed parts out, or what I did which was find a box colour veryyy similar to your roots (natural colour)
I did a strand test to ensure the colour would match as well as possible
A lot of people recommend soaking in coconut oil before dying to prevent damage, I have not tried this so cannot give my opinion

Although it would be preferable to avoid dying your hair this greatly helped me as I would not be able to deal with the roots , so far I dyed my hair back to natural at Christmas time and have no obvious roots, so I doubt I will ever need to colour again, although bleach underneath means my colour has faded at the ends a bit

MaryMarx
April 9th, 2012, 01:50 PM
I decided to stop colouring my hair black 10 months ago. My natural colour is ashy dark blonde/very light brown, and I coloured it brown a couple of times before giving it all up so it would blend in more.
Turned out quite well! It's hard to see where my natural colour stops.
For me, that was a great decision.

Covet
April 9th, 2012, 02:14 PM
I'm growing out bleach at the moment to get waist length virgin hair but the bleached lengths are white :( so I dye the bleached bits darker for it to blend in, it looks horrible otherwise.

ETA: I used a semi permanent and I CO wash - the dye is still in my hair from mid Jan! :)

swearnsue
April 9th, 2012, 02:51 PM
I'm growing my hair out from shaved so I never had to deal with colored ends, but I want to welcome you to LHC and encourage you to post pics of your hair! If you can, I know you have some restrictions on what you can do until you reach 25 posts. Anyway, welcome!

shutterpillar
April 9th, 2012, 03:05 PM
I'm growing my hair out from shaved so I never had to deal with colored ends, but I want to welcome you to LHC and encourage you to post pics of your hair! If you can, I know you have some restrictions on what you can do until you reach 25 posts. Anyway, welcome!


Thanks! I cannot wait to be able to post hair pictures. :D

torrilin
April 9th, 2012, 03:20 PM
I can see a couple viable strategies.

1. reach goal as quickly as possible - that would mean minimal trimming and color upkeep, just work with what you have

2. get virgin hair as quickly as possible - shave head or chop into a pixie to get rid of dye, grow out natural

3. maximal evenness - overdye the auburn to blend with your natural shade

4. minimize damage - deal with being two toned, but trim regularly to get rid of dye and minimize damage

You can obviously mix these priorities up some, but no one strategy is best. If I'm in that sort of situation, I'd be inclined to chop and grow out from a pixie. My hair grows fast and is fine and delicate, so drastic solutions are not a big deal to me... but having a ton of split ends is. Your hair isn't just like mine, so your preference may well be different. Plus, even if our hair were just the same, we're not the same so what seems like incredibly onerous hair care to me might be totally reasonable to you.

lapushka
April 9th, 2012, 04:00 PM
Now, in order to go back to my natural color, I am wondering if I will need to dye it again so the rest of my hair will match my roots, and then continue to grow and slowly cut out the damaged bits. Is there a safe way to do this? Is there a better option out there? A bit of my hair is bleached (which was a horrible mistake I made last september) so stripping my hair of its color would most likely not be an option as there are still some bleached parts in there, and I have found that stripping it would probably more damaging to my hair than coloring it would be.

You could possibly dye it with a semi-permanent, either ashy brown to match the roots or auburn to match the length, depending on what color is the darkest.