This is not a hair colour that you can do at home!

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Quick Guide to Salon Colour Services

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In salon hair color means putting your hair in the hands of a hairdressing professional. A fully trained cosmotologist who knows what they are doing and can achieve what you want. So why do so many people get exactly the opposite of what they want for their hair? The short answer is miss communication. Our quick glossary of what exactly a bleach, toner, highlight or lowlight, temporary hair color, semi permanent hair colour or demi colour is will help you to get what you want when you book your next appointment and to ensure you understand what is on offer. Remember that when talking to a hairdresser to reconfirm in plain language what you want to prevent any confusion. See free consultations for more info.

Bleach: a hair lightener used when you want to be really blonde applied to the scalp. Generally followed by a "toner" as a bleach is only the undercoat for the colour. Good to ask if the price you are quoted is inclusive of the toner. If you ask your hairstylist to 'bleach your hair' you will get an all over colour NOT highlights that are made using a bleach.

Toner: a type of colour generally applied over a bleach or highlights (made using bleach) to give your hair a "reflect" of ash, honey, beige, champagne etc. Great if your highlights get a bit dull you can get a toner to refresh them.

Tint or color (colour that grows out): both terms used to mean same thing. A permanent colour, that is applied directly onto your scalp to all of your hair. You can achieve a variety of shades and the process is less harsh on your hair and scalp than a bleach.

Semi or Demi colour (colour that fades out): both are all over colours that will change the reflect of your hair or darken it but not lighten it. Demi's are a little stronger and so last a longer (6 to 8 weeks) and will cover up to 70% grey. Semi's last about 6 weeks cover approx. 50% grey.

Lites, streaks or Highlights: pieces or strands of colour (tint or bleach) generally lighter than your own hair. Some hairdressers use the term to mean only made using bleach. Can be made using foil or a cap. The foil method is broken down into the amount of your hair that needs to have highlights added. This varies depending on your hair cut, the effect you want or even how many highlights you got the last time:

  • Full head: strands spaced throughout all of your hair, normally what you have the first time you try this type of colouring.
  • Half head: if your hair is long or hair cut suits you may not need a "full head" every time. This costs slightly less and strands are placed everywhere except the nape area.
  • Crown and Parting: this is when you need a quick set of highlights or an emergency touch-up between a full head or half head. The stands are placed as the name suggests.

Low-lights: same as highlights but darker than your own colour or made using tints rather than bleach.

Splices, slices, chunks or pieces: all these terms are used to describe pieces of colour that are made in the same way as high or low lights but are large sections of colour rather than strands.

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Finding the colouring method to suit your needs:

Permanent (Colour that grows out)

Semi permanent (Colour that slowly fades out)

Temporary (Colour that washes out in one or two shampoos)

All Over Bleach (If you want to be really blonde)

Highlights (Streaks of lighter colour)

Lowlites (Streaks of darker colour)

Free hand Colouring (Special Techniques)

Panel Colouring (Special Techniques)

The Re-growth Look (Special Techniques)

Alternative Colouring Methods:

Colouring using Henna or Plant based products.

Progressive Dyes

How do I choose a colour to suit me?

Thinking about Highlights? Check here first!.

Changing Your Hair Colour

'Deeper, Richer, Warmer' colours for your hair

Blonde, Blonde and more Blonde

Caring for Coloured Hair

All you need to know about Allergies to Hair Dye and Henna

Patch Testing for Allergies

Colour and the rumours about links to carcinogens

Other pages not related to colour that were visited are:

Blow dry and styling

Hair cuts to suit your face

Hair style gallery of looks

Your hair - dealing with particular hair types and their needs

Hair Extensions

Permanent hair straightening




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