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Thread: Elumen FAQ

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    I'm in the process of creating an Elumen FAQ. Would love to have suggestions and help for adding to the questions and answers.

    I'm going to spread this over 5 posts for easier reading in the future.

    Thank you for your patience as I enter things a little bit at a time.


    What is Elumen Hair color?
    ~ See website here

    About Elumen:

    ~ Elumen is a non-damaging, oxidant-free hair color that is easy to use at home too. It gives hair a very shiny finish and a nice feel. The color that gets added is a translucent stain and the color of hair underneath the Elumen will peek through. The color itself contains one 'cone but I don't think that is enough to create a really coated feeling for a long time. I wouldn't even compare it to the feeling you get after washing your hair with a really 'cone-saturated conditioner. The feeling after Elumen is silky, sturdy and very bouncy. Elumen is considered non-permanent, and reversible (with their product called Return). However, like all non-permanent hair color it can be permanent depending on your hair and which Elumen color you choose to dye with. Some colors seem to have more permanency than others. YMMV.

    The color also contains drying alcohol so it can dry the scalp a bit. Coloring with Elumen several times consecutively makes the color remain in your hair better. This is why many redheads love Elumen: the color lasts long looking vibrant and the more you color, the more the color sticks to the hair.

    Elumen tends to stick to damaged hair better than to virgin hair. That's why many Elumen users might use normal hair color on the roots (or weekly/frequent application of the Elumen) and Elumen on the lengths because Elumen might wash out from the roots in a few washes. But again, after coloring a few consecutive times with Elumen the color begins to stick even to the roots.

    ~Also see Swivelhop's excellent explanation of Elumen products here.

    Elumen product ingredients:
    http://forums.longhaircommunity.com/...7&postcount=90

    Can Elumen lighten hair?
    ~No.  Elumen is a deposit only dye that uses no peroxide or bleach.

    ~Iris noted: Elumen is a lot like henna in the sense that it only adds color, it can't lighten, and the color that gets added is a translucent stain. If you do elumen over henna the henna underneath will still peek through, and if you henna over elumen you would still see the elumen peek through. Adding lots and lots of layers of color might make it opaque in the end but then you'll end up quite dark.

    Does Elumen cover gray/white/silver hair?
    ~While Elumen is not recommended to cover gray, it has been known to cover gray. Again, it depends on your hair, but many people have had success in using Elumen to cover or blend their gray/white/silver hair.

    Does Elumen cover Henna/Hendigo?
    ~Many people have had great success with covering henna/hendigo. The red still shows through in the sun, but it can tone down or help blend two tone hair while growing it out. See here for more information about covering Henna/Hendigo.

    Can I henna over the Elumen?
    ~

    Is Elumen permanent?
    ~It's designed to be a non-permanent hair dye, but some have experienced a permanent color. Apparently the Elumen reds especially are really quite permanent. Remember to do always do a test strand first.

    Can I use sulfate shampoo and still keep my color?/Can I clean my hair with Amla and Shikaki while using Elumen?
    /Can I wash my hair with Baking Soda while using Elumen?
    ~See After Care Section.


    Is Elumen truly reversible with their Return product?

    ~Elumen is tricky to remove from the hair completely. The Return that supposedly reverses the color does not work as good as it should work and Elumen users have been forced to use hair bleachers to get rid off the remaining color. YMMV

    ~See here for tips and more information about the Return Product.

    What does Elumen smell and look like?
    ~According to Iris: It doesn't smell much like anything, which is a big in my book - I was expecting an overpowering 'salon product' perfumy smell but it was fine.

    ~The consistency of the Elumen is a bit weird, it's like jelly, quite thick and it tends to want to fall apart into clumps.

    How much Elumen does it take to cover my length of hair?
    ~See chart here.

    What's the difference between Elumen and Manic Panic?
    ~Iris noted: Elumen and MP use the same type of dyes actually. It's just azo dyes. Azo dyes are synthetic colors. There's the stubborn misconception that MP is 'natural' somehow but it's not - it uses synthetic azo dyes (some of which are also used as food coloring so maybe that's where the 'natural' idea comes from). Both elumen and MP use only a few azo dyes to make up all their shades (I've noticed that they use the exact same yellow, BTW, Yellow 10). Stargazer uses a much larger range of dyes, but they're all azo dyes in any case.

    The difference between elumen and MP etc seems to be that elumen has an alcohol-type solvent that makes the dye penetrate deeper into the hair. MP works by the principle of putting the color in a conditioner base that sticks to the outside of the hair shaft and slowly washes out. If you have porous hair MP will penetrate the hair, too, and it can end up being permanent in that case. But elumen is designed for the color to penetrate the hair, by the solvent.

    The permanence really is a sliding scale - elumen is more permanent than MP but both can end up being permanent or nonpermanent depending on your hair's structure.

    ~ For further discussion on this topic see here.


    Fading?
    ~Iris mentioned: The elumen does tend to fade from my roots. Goldwell recommends that you color your roots with an oxidative dye matching your elumen shade, for this reason I guess. Within two weeks after elumening, I'll have about half an inch of roots, and I know that my hair doesn't grow that fast, so some of that rootage must be due to fading. I'm experimenting now with a color-protecting shampoo to see if that prevents the root fadage. Other than root fadage, the color is sticking pretty well for me.


    Applying Elumen hair color to your hair instructions/Application Tips:
    ~See here.

    Information about Elumen Lock product and how to use:
    ~See here.

    Elumen Photos:
    ~See here.


    How does your hair look and feel AFTER using Elumen?
    ~See here.


    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    Last edited by K_Angel; February 18th, 2012 at 04:47 AM.

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    Default Re: Elumen FAQ

    Photos:

    Elumen After Photos:
    http://forums.longhaircommunity.com/...?t=5594&page=4

    Elumen Before and After Photos:





    ~~~~~
    Last edited by K_Angel; February 4th, 2012 at 04:18 AM.

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    Default Re: Elumen FAQ

    Application instructions:

    How to prepare your hair for Elumen dye:

    ~Nellen shared: I recommend a deep cleansing before toning with Elumen and avoiding any 'cone products before applying the jello-like color. The instructions say that Elumen should be applied to dry hair but I and many others have noticed that it doesn't make a difference on the end result if you apply it to towel dried, just deep cleansed hair.

    As I mentioned before the color is jello-like gel that is a bit tricky to get on hair without splashing it all over the place but once you get use to the consistency applying the color to hair carefully should be easy.


    Tips/advice on application/making application easier
    ~Iris: Let me first rave about the applicator comb, which is a work of genius. It has small holes in the tines, about 1.5 cm away from the tips of the tines, and when you squeeze the applicator bottle the dye lines up in perfect little beads between the tines. It really does work fantastically well to apply the dye close to the roots but away from the scalp.
    ~The coloring process itself as you have to be extra careful not to let the color on to your skin or bathroom surfaces because it will stain skin and bathroom materials. The color stains on skin wear off eventually but the stains may not wash out off tiles, tile grout etc.
    ~Wearing gloves is advisable to keep from staining your hands during application.
    ~Some people just put the appropriate amount of dye on their heads and then with gloved hands, try to get it all into the hair evenly.
    ~Iris: Found that if she thinned the gelly-like consistency out with a little bit of water, and used a tint brush, hardly splattered at all. It didn't stain my sink or tiles at all, but it leave a purple stain on a can of shaving cream that was on the counter. Depends on the material apparently. I tried it out on a bit of wool first and the wool it stained sort of a gray color, not purple at all.
    ~

    Should I use heat on the Elumen to make it more permanent or take the color better?
    ~Iris stated: I think the official philosophy is that applying heat while coloring will make the color permanent, while not applying heat will give only a temporary stain.

    All that heat does, is open up the hair shaft and make the color molecules move around more, so you'll get more permanence with heat that way. This works for MP, too - you can make MP last longer by applying heat. Heat doesn't magically change the properties of the dye, it just makes the hair take it a bit better and more deeply.

    To use or not to use Elumen's Lock product?
    ~See here.

    How does your hair look and feel AFTER using Elumen?
    ~Iris describes it this way: My hair was indeed a bit dry afterwards, but that was easily fixed with some oil. It feels very strong though. Not coated, not 'coney, but stronger than before.
    ~It's been reported that most people experience very shiny hair.
    ~From Iris: Condition-wise, elumen is exactly the same to me as henna. It dries your hair out a bit right after doing it, just like henna. Then you just put some oil in (I mist with distilled water with a little bit of jojoba oil in it). After the oil, hair returns to normal and feels a bit thicker. Elumen makes it stronger and glossier, like henna does, and after awhile the shine goes away, just like with henna, and the body goes away too. I find them to be exactly the same, really. Surprisingly little difference.

    Iris' application routine:
    ~The consistency of the elumen is a bit weird, it's like jelly, quite thick and it tends to want to fall apart into clumps. The way I've been applying is I thin the elumen out with water (about 1 part elumen to 1 part water), that makes it easier to handle. Then I apply with an applicator brush, quite close to but not touching the scalp. I do 1/2 inch sections.

    That works alright for the front, but in the back I can't see (I've tried using two mirrors but I find it hard to get used to that), so I go by feel in the back and that means I do touch the scalp there. The applicator bottle may be a solution for that.

    I do my roots first and then I apply a mixture of mostly AB@9 to the length to counter the brassiness of the left-over henna there a bit. On the length I just glop it on and knead it in. So overall the length gets a little less application time.

    Application time doesn't really matter the way it does with oxidative dyes though. I find that if I use heat with the elumen, all the color will be absorbed by the hair. It will simply rinse clean. Only the red components may bleed a little (the rinse water will be a little pinkish); all the blue stuff is completely absorbed when I use heat. Whether it's on for 20 or 30 or 40 minutes doesn't matter at all for that. Without heat, it takes longer for all the color to absorb, more like a few hours.


    ~~~~
    Last edited by K_Angel; February 18th, 2012 at 05:58 AM.

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    Default Re: Elumen FAQ

    Guide to understanding the Coloring system?

    What do the Elumen hair color codes mean?
    ~The meaning for the codes of the colors is as follows:

    A = Ash
    B (Pure) = Blue
    B = Beige/Brown
    G = Gold
    K = Copper
    N = Natural
    R = Red
    V = Violet
    Gn = Green

    The first letter gives the dominant tone, the second letter the secondary tone, the number gives the level (level of darkness). So RV@all is red violet, and you can use it for all levels of darkness.

    Visual color chart here.

    Elumen colors and their results explained:

    UNNATURAL
    GK@all - Gold Copper (Yellow) on any hair level
    KK@all - Copper (Orange) on any hair level
    RR@all - Red on any hair level
    Pk@all - Pink on any hair level
    RV@all - Red Violet on any hair level
    BB@all - Blue on any hair level
    Gn@all - Green on any hair level


    Deep
    NA@2 - Natural Ash on a hair level 2
    NB@4 - Natural Beige/Brown on a hair level 4
    NB@5 - Natural Beige/Brown on a hair level 5


    Bright
    AB@6 - Ash Beige/Brown on a hair level 6
    BV@6 - Beige/Brown Violet on a hair level 6
    NG@6 - Natural Gold on a hair level 6
    BG@6 - Beige/Brown Gold on a hair level 6
    BK@6 - Beige/Brown Copper on a hair level 6
    BR@6 - Beige/Brown Red on a hair level 6


    Light
    KB@7 - Copper Beige/Brown on a hair level 7
    BG@7 - Beige/Brown Gold on a hair level 7
    BG@8 - Beige/Brown Gold on a hair level 8
    BK@9 -Beige/Brown Copper on a hair level 9
    GB@9 - Gold Beige/Brown on a hair level 9
    AB@9 - Ash Beige/Brown on a hair level 9


    ** Note: PK@all = Pink - Iris: It really is as strong as they say it is. One drop is enough.


    Elumen's Visual color chart: here.

    Natural Hair color levels number system visually explained:
    http://forums.longhaircommunity.com/...ad.php?t=33667

    Elumen Creative Colors recipes:

    ~Rini: If you click "Go Creative" in the menu, then click "Creative Mixing Recommendations" down the bottom a little box comes up with a lady with yellow stripey hair. If you then click the little red arrow down the bottom left corner of that box, it will show you some mix suggestions/recipes and their resulting hair colours on various levels. I found this VERY useful! I quite like the "Brown Sugar" shade which is 5 parts of AB9 and 1 part BV6. I also like "Burned Copper" which is 1 part BV6, 3 parts GK@all and 1 part KK@all. I think I could get a nice variation of the "Burned Copper" result by substituting the 3 parts GK@all with 3 parts AB@9 .....hmmm..... It does get one thinking creatively!

    Interesting tidbits about the colors you need to know before using:
    ~ AB@6 is much darker than you'd think.
    ~AB@9 and AB@6 are really not that different, the 6 is more concentrated but they're both the same basic tone, - gray, basically. (Which is what ash-colored hair is, if you look at it as just a color)
    ~Iris: The BR@6, and I really find the red part of that pretty darn red. I use only a little bit of it on my hair, but I've tried it pure on white wool and it is brown with red, but a LOT of red.
    ~Iris: Elumen can stain your scalp something fierce though, more than henna. I try to apply it a millimeter away from the scalp for that reason.
    ~The pink bleeds more than the AB colors. Strangely enough the ashy component of the AB colors does fade more than the pink does, but it bleeds less. I mean, I don't see any blue/purple/gray color come out in the rinse water when I wash my hair, but I do see that component fade from my hair over time.

    What is the color "Clear" used for?
    ~The clear is just for mixing lighter colors. It is not advisable to use it for anything else (so, not like a gloss treatment for instance), because it is a little drying (due to the alcohol). So if you want just the conditioning, no color, then I'd just use a deep treatment full of cones to get the same effect but without the bit of dryness that Elumen gives.


    Elumen Colors and their tendency towards permanency
    ~Apparently the Elumen reds especially are really quite permanent.
    ~For Iris: BR@6 seems to be holding up a lot better than AB@6 and/or AB@9.

    Bright Color Family:
    ~Iris remarked: 'bright' color family, and my understanding of the bright family is that they are meant to give sort of brownish naturalish shade with a twist. So, I think the idea behind that group is that they don't give you bright pink or blue or red hair, but brown with a clear pink or blue or red shade.



    Recipes/Formulas: Colors/combinations
    http://forums.longhaircommunity.com/...31&postcount=4
    http://forums.longhaircommunity.com/...3&postcount=10
    http://forums.longhaircommunity.com/...5&postcount=21
    http://forums.longhaircommunity.com/...8&postcount=23
    http://forums.longhaircommunity.com/...0&postcount=25
    http://forums.longhaircommunity.com/...1&postcount=31
    http://forums.longhaircommunity.com/...&postcount=124
    http://forums.longhaircommunity.com/...&postcount=158


    Coloring gray/white/silver:

    ~While Elumen is not recommended to cover gray, it has been known to cover gray. Again, it depends on your hair, but many people have had success in using Elumen to cover or blend their gray/white/silver hair.
    ~Iris: It covers my grays permanently I'd say (well, I've only been using it for 4 months but in that time I haven't had any fading on the grays). I also have some super coarse wirey white hairs, I think the color fades a bit more from those.
    Of course, the whites turn out lighter than the rest of the hair, which is an effect I like a lot. I hate one-dimensional color.
    ~Iris: As my hair dries, I'm seeing rather disappointing root coverage. I applied to clarified, bone dry hair this time, and it looks like that did not make the dye take better - in fact, I got much better coverage on my whites with my old method of applying watered-down elumen with a tint brush, and used only half the dye that way, too. I think that next time I'm going to apply to wet hair, with the applicator comb. Wetting hair is a well-known trick to getting better coverage on grays with regular oxidative dyes, so it may indeed help with elumen, too. Looks that way to me.


    Covering Henna/Hendigo/Cassia/Chemical dye:

    ~See this section here.



    Tips to adjusting color(s):

    ~ Nellen's Tip: At first I colored my hair once in two weeks to really make the color to stick. So you don't have to suffer very long if the color turns out to be not quite right in the first coloring time as you can color the hair again quickly and change the mixture to a more appropriate direction.


    Removing Elumen stains from face and hands:
    ~Crysania: I had a product that was helping with the stains a lot its called CO Bigelow lemon hand wash. I applied it to my hair line where the stains were , left it for a few hours and when i washed my hair they were gone!


    ~~~~~~~

    ~The RR@all is - very red.

    ~~~~~~
    Last edited by K_Angel; February 18th, 2012 at 05:57 AM.

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    Default Re: Elumen FAQ

    Using Elumen on henna/cassia/chemically-treated hair

    ~Iris' experience: I did two applications in a row - first one with mostly AB@9, which was too light, second one with the mix of 1/3 AB@6 and 2/3 AB@9 that nellen suggested, which was good. The henna still peaks out in the sun but that's what henna does - in less bright light it does fully cover the henna, color looks very natural too and matches my roots. I was a bit sloppy applying it to the mid length so I'll have to go over that area again.

    Posts on the subject of covering henna with Elumen
    http://forums.longhaircommunity.com/...0&postcount=25
    Last edited by K_Angel; February 4th, 2012 at 03:58 AM.

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    Default Re: Elumen FAQ

    How much Elumen does it take to cover my length of hair?
    All amounts are approximate. YMMV

    ~BSL (4 inch circumference ponytail) = 1/6 the bottle.
    Last edited by K_Angel; February 4th, 2012 at 04:17 AM.

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    Default Re: Elumen FAQ

    Tips and How to use the Lock product:

    ~Comfrey: Ok spoke to my hairdresser and she said she uses the lock for about 5-10 minutes only, but that you do need it to fix the colour.

    ~Iris: It's very very fumey. - it smells like something that should be in a garage, not on your head.

    ~Iris: If I use the Lock, I get no bleeding at all. Without the Lock, maybe for two washes?
    Last edited by K_Angel; February 18th, 2012 at 04:02 AM.

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    Default Re: Elumen FAQ

    Tips and information about the Return product:

    ~Comfrey: One thing though apparently the return thing you can buy only works if you use it immediately after applying the colour. Once you have kept the colour on for a wash or two, you cant remove it even with the special stuff.

    ~Comfrey: The return product can be helpful in removing the stains from your hands/face, as it is notoriously difficult to remove.

    ~Iris: Does the remover stuff really take it off, even if you leave the color on for say, a week?
    I don't have any personal experience with the Return, but from what I've read, I wouldn't count on it. The best results with the Return are supposedly if you use it right after dyeing (scenario: you rinse out the color, look in the mirror, go 'oh no, what have I done!' and apply Return immediately). For elumen that has been in longer, results with the Return seem to vary a lot. ETA: based on what I've read on hairdressing forums etc.

    That being said, I would think that it should at least be easier to get elumen out than it is to get henna/indigo out. I don't think that the Return product is a magic wand that you can wave and get your original color back, but it should get at least some color out, and with henna/indigo you're pretty much stuck.

    I have bleached out elumen (just one strand), and that certainly worked a lot better than bleaching out henna.

    So, compared to henna/indigo, elumen will be easier to get out, but you can't count on it coming out just like that.

    ~Clarita asked how to use Return:
    The answer: Copper Silver said: The Return actually does have some brief instructions on the bottle! It's a bit like shampoo in consistency. I've used it on wet and dry hair. It spreads a lot easier on wet hair, but then you get the drips. You get 200ml in a bottle I think, and it suggests using 40ml, so you should have plenty to experiment with in terms of timings etc.

    I've had pretty good results removing some of the colour with baking soda too. Mix up about a dessert spoonful of BS with enough shampoo to make a paste and put that on. Leave for as long as you can stand it (it gives me the itchies) then wash it off. It's fairly drying so condition well after.

    The Answer: Rini said: here's how I used Return: apply to damp hair and then cover with plastic wrap and put a heat cap on. I left it for about 40 mins, then unwrap your hair and rub the strands with the Return (like you're shampooing). Get in the shower and apply shampoo and rub some more. Rinse. Repeat and then maybe repeat again (if you're still getting colour coming out in the rinse water). Be careful with all that rubbing because it can be damaging, be gentle!


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    Last edited by K_Angel; March 23rd, 2012 at 08:11 PM.

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    Default Re: Elumen FAQ

    Elumen after coloring care:

    ~Iris: You don't have to use the rest of the line, but for me, using the Wash really helped to keep the color on my roots. It's a nice shampoo in general, mild. It made a huge difference for me in terms of preventing fading on the roots.

    ~Iris: The rest of the line, well, I bought pretty much the whole line just to see if it would work better, but I can take it or leave it really. It's all very coney and works just as well as any cone-filled conditioner for me, really.

    ~Iris: But yeah it's filled with cones, and it works well with cone-filled things. You don't have to use the shampoo, unless you see fading, which you probably won't if you lightly bleach your roots first.

    You don't have to use cones with it, either. For a long time I used just a rinse of rose petals, hibiscus and elderflower as my only conditioner, and that worked very well for me.

    Can I use sulfate shampoo and still keep my color?
    ~Iris experienced this: I use sulfates to wash, and I wash every day. Also I was in pretty brutal sunshine for about two hours a day every day for the past four weeks, and swimming in the sea etc, so these were hardly conditions suitable for preserving color in general. I was expecting it to fade much more than it did. That's the BR on virgin hair.

    Can I clean my hair with Amla and Shikaki while using Elumen?
    ~Iris: I washed with amla and shikakai a few days ago, and it totally stripped all the elumen from the first inch of my roots. Amla being acidic I thought it might prevent fading, but no - quite the opposite. I've had better luck preventing root fadage with a 'color protect' shampoo - I use the Dove.

    Can I wash my hair with Baking Soda while using Elumen?
    ~Iris: I mixed up a handful of baking soda with a good amount of shampoo and some water, applied this to my hair and kept it on for thirty minutes, then rinsed out and followed with a cold citric-acid rinse. This did strip quite a bit of color, more than I'd expected. I don't think it would work to get rid of Elumen dye completely, but it sure did get rid of quite a bit of it. So, washing with baking soda wouldn't be a great idea for an Elumen user probably (not that it would be for anyone who dyes their hair, except maybe with henna). It seems to have stripped the yellow tones especially, the pink/red tones not so much.
    Last edited by K_Angel; February 18th, 2012 at 04:45 AM.

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    Default Re: Elumen FAQ

    Can you use Elumen on human hair extensions? (I am going to find out next week...)

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