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8 commonly asked questions about coloring your hair

BlogBeauty Student Advice, Beauty Tips, How To's | January 28, 2012

Deciding whether to start coloring your hair is a big step if you have never done it before. You may be feeling a bit nervous especially after reading some of the horror stories out there…hair falling out or brassy orange hair, just to name a few.  So to help put your mind at ease we came up with the top 8 commonly asked questions about coloring your color

1. Should I color my hair myself or should I go to a professional?
If you are coloring your hair for the first time you should definitely go to a professional. A professional hair stylist will be able to consult with you on what color would look best with your skin tone. Also, having a professional do a strand test is the best way to make sure you are not allergic to the products and to ensure that your hair will get the desired results you are looking for with out damaging it.

2. Will coloring my hair damage it?
If you are using a permanent haircolor you have to lift the hair using a hydrogen peroxide (developer). This process raises or opens up the cuticle layer of the hair to allow the color molecules to penetrate the cortex depositing the color which could damage the hair if not done properly. If you use the wrong level of peroxide or if you constantly change your hair color (over-processing) this is what will cause the damage to your hair. However, if you use a semi-permanent or demi-permanent they will help add extra shine and condition to the hair but will only last a couple of shampoos.

3. What’s the difference between semi-permanent, demi- permanent and permanent?

Semi-permanent hair color does not contain peroxide so it can not lift the hair, therefore it can only make the hair darker and not lighter. The color will only last about six to twelve shampoos because it only deposits the hair color on the outermost layer of the hair. This is a good choice to try if you are afraid you may not like the color. Also, semi-permanent will enhance the shine and condition of the hair since it is not lifting.

Demi-Permanent hair color contains low amounts of peroxide which unlike semi-permanent, it can lighten the hair slightly. Demi-permanent deposits the color between the cuticle and cortex therefore making it last longer, anywhere from 12 – 26 washes.

Permanent hair color just as the name suggests, it is a permanent hair color and will last until the colored strands grow out. Permanent hair color can light hair up to 4 levels anything more than that is not recommended as it can cause damage to the color blonde

4. Will the color cover my grey hair?
Yes, hair color will cover your grey hair depending on what formula and brand you use. If you have more than 50% of grey hair it is probably best to use a permanent hair color.

5. How often should I shampoo my hair after receiving a color service?
After you receive your color service wait at least 24 hours before shampooing your hair, 48 hours is even better. Try and limit your washing to 3 times a week, especially if you have a more intense color like, red.

6. How long do I have to wait before re-coloring my hair with a different color?
This all depends on the condition of your hair. It is best to consult with your hair stylist about your options. If you have damaged hair, it is probably best to wait until your hair is in better condition or until the color grows out. If you don’t like the color of your hair, talk to your stylist about a color corrective service.

7. Can I get color and hi-lights all on the same day?

Yes, as long as your hair is in good condition they can color your hair and then add hi-lights.

8. Can I lighten my hair a couple of levels without bleaching or stripping the color?
In order to lighten the hair you have to use some sort of bleach or peroxide to remove the pigment so you can create the color you are looking for, especially if your are trying to go from a shade of brown to blonde.

Adding color to your hair allows you to achieve a variety of different looks from funky and bold to a more natural subtle look. There are many different hair colors and brands out there, to find out which is the best for your hair consult with a professional or visit your local beauty school for their expert advice.

If you would like to learn more about coloring hair maybe a career in beauty is for you.  Schedule a tour today and meet with a Career Planning Specialist to see if Empire is the perfect fit for you.  Visit  or call 1-800-964-3635.

Jess Quandel

Written by Jess Quandel


  • Jewel says:

    I wanted to know if there is a healthier way to color my hair with developer and a color dye of my choice. I researched that some stylist use developer to avoid bleaching a clients hair and though it might not give the client a dramatic light effect, they can gradually lighten the hair through various hair sessions. I have colored my hair (relaxed hair) before and it was bleached and If I can avoid that then that would be great. Is this true and if so is there a negative side effect to just using a developer?

  • SNG says:

    I have professional highlights from a permanent haircolor that lifted the hair using a hydrogen peroxide (developer). This process raises or opens up the cuticle layer of the hair.

    Now the highlighted part is frizzy. What can I do to reseal the cuticle? A semi permanent?

    • Shawn says:

      Sally’s beauty supply has a great after color treatment, as well as an after color sealer that are designed to return the hair to it’s normal ph and slam that cuticle shut! Be sure and use a moisturizing conditioner after each of these, followed by a cool water rinse. I use both of these directly after coloring just to be safe, and then the sealer a couple times a week after shampooing and before conditioning with great success. HTH. :-)

  • fadia says:

    Hi imy hair was darkr brown, I bleach my hair and the colour now is golden blonde brown red, I wana know will light ash blonde Nice n Easy take away Brazzy tones, I want a nice shade of blonde!

  • Tarun says:

    Hi i have applied fashion coloured(golden) streaks on my hair. I just want to know that after how much time these streaks will fade out & my general hair colour that is black will come back, since it has been bleached before applying the golden streaks colour.

  • maggie says:

    hi i was think about dying my hair for the first time from a dirty blonde to like a shade darker. Is this a good idea? Will it look bad? Will it damage?

    • Pamela says:

      I would not – I just did it and I am disappointed – my hair looks too dark now and I miss the blonde color, especially for the summer.

  • Tiffany says:

    I just colored my hair and it turned blue gray please tell me how to fix it I’m getting married today

  • Sam says:

    I’ve been dyeing my hair for 10yrs now and have never had an issue with my color other than having to get used to it until now… my hair was a dark blonde with lighter highlights and it was time to re color my hair cuz my Roots were about an inch grown out… I wanted to go darker for the winter but not super dark so I got a light Brown dyed my hair and where the highlights were my hair turned grey so I bought a natural Brown and dyed it again and it still looks grey… What should I do to get rid of the grey? This has never happened before I go from dark to light and light to dark all the time… :/

  • arshad moin says:

    i use haire colur garner but use this colour i suffer allergy you suggest what i do

  • Dimension A Salon says:

    In 30 years, we have never been asked any of those questions. Now what we have been asked repeatedly:
    1. How much will it cost to get a head of highlights?
    2. The last salon didn’t cover my grey hair. Can you?
    3. I just got my hair colored, and I don’t want to go back to the salon where it was done. Can you fix it today?
    4. How much do you charge for an all over color?
    5. How much does a haircut and color cost?
    6. I’d like to get a color consultation, when can I get one?
    7. I colored my hair black, and I want to be blonde. How much will it cost?

  • claudia says:

    I color my hair last april with black color and then i color my hair now with ash blonde but the color has effect only in the roots of my hair then in the middle its black and on the tip of my hair is dark sh blonde… What will i gonna do? I like to color my hair ash blonde

  • Erin says:

    I just recently tried to dye my hair from light brown (dyed) to blonde, but the color only took at my roots. It did however, lighten my brown. I feel like I look ridiculous so I went to the beauty supply store and bought bleach items. How long should I wait after dying my hair to bleach it since the metals can fry my hair? Take into consideration that my hair is perfectly healthy.

  • A.A says:

    I have colored my hair last day. And that does not suit on my face. I need to get back my original color. I have heard that vinegar will be able to get your original color back. But when I searched about this, a lot of people say that it will only bleach your hair. Means you can go back to blonde. But my original color was brown.
    So my question to you is, is, there any other way to get my original hair color back or can I use a brown hair color after 2 days of coloring?

  • Kelsey says:

    I just attempted to dye my hair blonde from a darker brown the day before yesterday and it came out a natural looking orange-red. I was wondering how long I need to wait before I dye it again to get the blonde hair I was trying for.

  • gurbir says:

    i m so stressed due to my grey hairs. what should i do?

  • Amelia says:

    When using a semi- permanant dye will your highlights (foils) and original colour go back the same once it washes out?
    Thank you, Amelia.

  • Cindy says:

    I have been going to my beautician for almost 3 years. She has always used the same formula when hi-lighting my hair and my natural hair color is medium brown and has grey come through at my age now, mainly on top of my part in middle. So I want to share this with all of you worried about coloring your hair. I went to my beautician on a Friday and she puts the hi-lights on and my hair when she was done ended up almost a solid Golden Blonde all over my head, that #1 is not hi-lights, so I ask her can I call you to make an appointment for the next Friday, and I get into her , and she looks at my hair when I sit in her chair. She tells me the color specialist that came into the beauty shop a couple weeks ago showed her a new formula, so my beautician used this new formula the 1st time when she turned my brown hair with blonde hi-lites in it the Golden Blonde all over, she did not tell me at the time she used it, she was using a new formula, ( So ladies always ask are you using the same formula when your getting your hair hi-lighted) She tells me the 2nd time I went in to her this. I told her no wonder it did not turn out like it always does when you hi-light my hair, she says I shuld have not used a new formula it did not keep the gold out, ( “” NO NOT AT ALL) So she decides to try an go back to the old formula she always used, and my hair color was a darker brown with barely seen hi-lights, I told her this is not the color I like and she always new how I liked my hair colored an hi-lighted.
    So she decides to try another formula same day I was in her chair, I was in the shop close to 4 hours. And I felt she was getting kind of edgy, I feel cause she was losing money me sitting in her chair an workn on me for to long. And when she was done with my hair 2nd time same day, I told her there r hardly any hi-lites in my brown hair, and I had some on 1 side of my head I had dark brown with a few hi-lites an 1 strip of my hair about 2inches wide was solid brown on right side of my hair, and on my left side of my head was brown hair an a few more hi-lights but some was gold toward my top of my head on left side.
    Now after I left very unhappy I never got upset with her, I just said I will call you or text u to get a appt. next week, well I texted her this 3rd time to get in for her to maybe do a deep conditioner , cause my hair got very thin feeling and frizzy, not healthy at all.
    I told her I felt my hair may have been over processed, and I felt she shuld owe me at least a deep conditioner and then give my hair a break from any more sort of color or hi-lites then I felt as her as a professional feeling that she would.
    She replies in a text, I am leaving your money at the front desk of the beauty shop and u can come by an get it at your convenience, and i also feel I can no longer do your hair and maybe you can find another beautician that can please you, since your to picky for me to please.
    I was stunned, upset, for her leaving my hair dried out mainly all over my head, and to top it off she no longer will do my hair cause I am too picky?
    Excuse me but if she had used the same formula that she always used in the 1st visit, we would have not had this entire issue at all.
    Now I have to find a new beautician, which we all know it is hard to start over with somebody new, after 1 has done ur hair for over 2 years.
    Only thing I know to do with my dried out hair and frizz is to put a deep conditioner on it myself on the ends and put it in a cap for aprox. 30min. and do that 2 x a week.
    VERY DISTURBED, and my hair is about 3 inches past my shoulders, and I am trying my hardest to not have it cut short, I like the length my hair is, any other suggestions please REPLY!

  • Tammy says:

    I went to a salon yesterday. I’m a blonde. I went in to have my roots touched ip. I came out with red and orange hair. Help. I need my blonow color back. What is the best way to fix this Big mess?

  • Hannah says:

    So I am planning on getting my hair died a few shades lighter than it is right now, from dark-mouse blonde to medium blonde. But will dying my hair ruin my natural highlights? When my hair grows back out will the highlights grow back too?

  • Haley says:

    I want to dye my hair a darker color I’ve got a clairol permanent color and a clairol demi permanent developer… Can I use the two together? I don’t care if it washes out since I’m dying my hair the same color I just dont want to drive back out of town to trade out the developer… Can I still use it?

  • Meg says:

    I dyed my hair with “lightest golden brown” (my hair is natutally medium/dark brown) and it turned out too brassy. I talked with a few people who suggested I use a demi permanent hair dye on my hair to correct it and I tried. I left it in for 5 minutes and rinsed it out. It didn’t work. I’m assuming I should have used an ashier color…how soon can I try again?

  • Carol says:

    I am going out of town for 2 weeks, and want my hair to look good. How close to my departure date should I get my gray colored for it to last the 2 weeks I’m gone? Thank you! :)

  • Baili says:

    Question! I just had my hair dyed (professionally.) My hair was a medium brown, and now it is a dark blonde. I LOVE IT. I would even go s little lighter. But, will my hair continue to be a little more blonde until I wash it?

  • Neeeu says:

    i want to know dat how to do colour???
    should we apply on roots or 1-2 inches away frm roots????

  • Joanne says:

    Hi I’ve recently had my hair done at the salon it was black and wanted to go chocolate brown which I came out what looks like three colours in my hair black red and dark brown which I’m not impressed so I Been looking up on YouTube and my plan is now to get a colour b4 to strip colour out and have brought two box garnier almond dark blonde dyes so will this achieve me to go lighter brown ? What do you think will happen. ?

  • trina says:

    My natural color is 1B I use the Dark and Lovely vivacious red because of the results for my color on the box. I don’t like to use bleach, but I wanted it a little lighter. Can I add an intense semi permanent red on top. If i just dyed it yesterday?

  • Tyler says:

    Hi I have never ever dyed my hair before. I have dark, dark brown hair (black almost) and it is extremely curly I have also never had a relaxer in my hair so I am brand new to this. I want to dye my hair a semi-perm color Rosewood Brown but I want to do this without bleaching my hair. How will the color turn out? and will it be visible?Is it even possible to do this without bleaching my hair…please help

    • Joanne says:

      Hi try this you won’t be disappointed use colour b4 to strip hair then put almond dark blonde on after then a light brown and there you have it a perfect chocalate brown :)

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