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Get it Right the First Time: Mastering Your Hair Color

Coloring your hair is a great way to cover gray hair or update your look. Unfortunately, the cost of having someone else color and maintain color-treated hair can really add up. It can also be difficult to find time, between work and home responsibilities, to go to a salon. Instead of letting the cost and inconvenience keep you from having the hair color you love, try doing it yourself at home. With a few tips and tricks, you’ll be mastering doing your hair color at home in no time.


Do a strand test. No seriously, do a strand test. It’s the only way to absolutely know that you like the hair color you have chosen, and it will help you figure out how long to leave the color formula on your hair. A strand test is simple. Get step-by-step instructions here.

Prepare your hair, if needed. If your hair is already color treated, and you want to change the color, use a color corrector, like Ion Color Brilliance Color Corrector, first.

Going lighter? If your natural hair color is blonde or light brown, you do not need to prelighten your hair. Simply pick the shade of permanent hair color you want and apply. But if your natural hair color is medium brown or darker, you should use Ion Color Brilliance Ammonia Free Lightener to prelighten your hair before applying your lighter hair color.

What You Need

General Tips When Coloring Your Hair

  •  Read and follow the instructions that come with your hair color.
  • After doing a strand test, apply first-time color (not a retouch) all over, working down towards the scalp if using a bottle or in sections if using a brush.
  • Set your timer as soon as you’ve finished applying the hair color, not when you started.
  • After the timer goes off, rinse out the hair color until the water runs clear.
  • Use a deep conditioner, like the Ion Color Brilliance After Color Treatment, to help lock in your color.

As you can see, it really is that simple to color your hair at home. There’s no need to worry about scheduling an appointment or spending a huge piece of your paycheck to have the hair color you want.

Pro tip

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