Hair 101: THE DO’S AND DON’T’S OF COLOURING YOUR HAIR
Frank Ocean with perfectly coloured hair. Courtesy of GETTY IMAGES.
WHETHER YOU’VE DECIDED TO TRY A NEW LOOK OR ARE FIGHTING OFF YOUR FIRST GREY HAIRS, HERE’S EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW BEFORE YOU DYE YOUR HAIR FOR THE FIRST TIME.
Colouring your hair is a big step and it isn’t one that should be taken lightly. But, if you have decided that you want to go down the dye path, more power to you.
Dyeing your hair can give you confidence, change your style and make all your experiences new again. As they say, “change your hair, change your life”.
Nonetheless, dyeing your hair can be scary. There’s always the risk when experimenting with bright colours that your hair won’t turn out the exact way you want. After all, only Frank Ocean can pull off things that mere mortals cannot. But, with some care and the right tips, you can live out your wildest hair dreams.
If you aren’t here to go crazy with your hair, and instead you’ve hit that age where fighting off greys is a relentless battle, you still need to take care not to overdo it. No one wants you looking like an extra from Goodfellas.
With this in mind, we talked to the former Australian Hairdresser of the Year, Anthony Nader from Raw Hair, about the do’s and don’t’s of colouring your hair.
GQ: Does colouring your hair damage it?
Anthony Nader: Yes and no. It really depends on how drastic or just how natural you want the end result. Let’s say if you are a dark brown to black hue and you want to go platinum blonde, you’ll definitely hear your poor hair strands crying out for some rehabilitation—and quickly too.
When colouring your hair, the rule of thumb to keep your strands in tip-top shape is never go beyond two to three shades lighter or darker. If you have those sneaky silver hairs poking through and you want to camouflage them, opt for a soft, non-chemical application, and this won’t dry out strands either and will fade out very naturally—so much so that your mates won’t even know you take to the colour bowl.
How do I decide what colour I want to choose?
It’s simple… ask your hairdresser for their advice. Don’t ever play ‘hairdresser’ at home. You’ll only end up in a big pickle, and you’ll then have to go to a salon to have it fixed in the long run.
Is men’s hair dye different to women’s hair dye?
I don’t see why it would be different, really. I’ve been in the hair industry for 30 years now and never heard of a “male-only” colour range.
How long will my hair stay dyed?
It depends if you have, say, a semi-permanent which can last about one month. Or you can have a permanent colour which grows out. Be mindful here, though, as you’ll get a regrowth after a week or two, which may not suit your work schedule as you’ll need your roots touched up religiously every 3-4 weeks.
@evanmock via Instagram
Should I dye my hair myself or get someone to do it?
If you’re young or in uni and want to experiment… go for it. This is your time to play as you won’t get lip from your employer. However, if you’re in a workplace environment and you want your colour to be done the correct way, make an appointment at your salon.
If I’m dyeing my hair myself, what dye should I use?
I can’t even recommend one… #DontDoIt
Can I dye my hair if it is long?
Colouring long hair is hard work and takes a technical skillset. Just be mindful of the longer your strands, the more careful you need to be with over colouring the mid-lengths and ends. Colour build-up is common with colouring long hair, and in turn, over time, your hair can snap off because of all the excess colour that has been applied over time.
What hair dye should I use to hide greys?
I don’t have specific brand names but my top tip when colouring greys is always to aim for a shade lighter than a shade darker. You can always go darker slowly, and in this way, your hair will stay looking natural instead of looking like a dead cat has perched itself on the top of your crown of glory.
How do I take care of my hair after it has been dyed?
Use a shampoo and conditioner for coloured hair. This combo will ensure hydration and longevity to your colour, whereas a regular shampoo and conditioner can strip your colour out within the first couple of washes. When you spend your hard earn dollars on a quality colour, you don’t want to wash it all away in the next wash.
CHARLIE CALVER, GQ Australia.