Home hair colouring vs salon hair colouring, box dye vs professional dye and £ vs ££ – the difference between colouring your hair at home or at the salon is a question that we’ve been asked countless of times. And the answer is? It depends.
What does it depend on? You’re about to find out.
Your hair’s current health, texture, density and porosity will all affect the outcome of both home and professional colouring. If you have really healthy hair, that’s previously taken well to box dye, then you’ll likely receive the same result.
If you have dry hair, split ends, unmanageable frizz or you’re colouring your hair for the first time, then the knowledge and skills of a salon professional are essential for achieving the results you want. At Mack Hair and Beauty, our stylists are all trained and knowledgeable about hair health, structure and type, and how colour will affect this.
If your ultimate aim is to have Ash Blonde 9.13 all-over colour, then an over-the-counter dye will help you achieve this. All we recommend is that you never go more than two shades lighter or darker than your current colour and that you’re happy the final colour might not be the same as it is on the box.
If your colour aim is a little more complex, then the expertise and products of a professional colourist are invaluable. For example, we’d recommend visiting a salon for:
● Drastic colour changes;
● Bright and bold shades; and
● Colouring grey hairs, as these can struggle to take on the colour of box dyes.
Over-the-counter hair dyes have developed significantly over the past few years and, if you’re willing to splurge, you can buy expensive hair dye that contains many of the protective ingredients of salon hair dye. However, boxed hair dye is a “one size fits all” product. It contains the same amount of developer and pigments regardless of your hair type or current colour. This can be damaging and result-varying.
Hair salons only use the best dyes out there, and your colourist will freshly mix the dye components according to your hair’s needs. This can cause less damage, better shades, and longer colour.
Unless you want to get into the topic of rubber caps, home hair colouring can only achieve an all-over colour. If that’s what you want, then just be sure to appoint a willing assistant who can ensure even coverage over your hair and minimal coverage over your bathroom.
If you want highlights, a flash of colour, balayage or any other tailored colouring technique, then you’ll need to visit an expert who has the relevant tools, skills and application techniques.
If you’re a free spirit and you’re happy with “seeing how it turns out”, then home hair colouring should suit you fine. The lack of multi-tonal colour, the one size fits all ingredients, and the application process of home dyes can produce a variety of results, good and bad. If it does go badly, then pick up the phone and speak to a hair salon ASAP.
If you’re after a specific look, you want to achieve a non-colour aim (such as brightening your skin tone or highlighting your features), or you want access to products such as Olaplex to protect your hair, then you need a hairstylist. Simple.
The all-important money factor. A £7.99 box of hair dye is significantly cheaper than a salon visit – or is it? In-salon techniques (such as highlights and balayage) and professional products can extend the life of your colour and reduce the noticeability of regrowth. This means that you can colour your hair less often and achieve less damage as a result.
The ‘sit back and relax’ me-time that you get during a salon colour is also priceless.
We’re hairstylists, so we’re naturally passionate in-salon hair colour and the care, attention, expertise and results that come with it. If you’re happy with the results, then there’s nothing wrong with choosing a quality box dye. But, if you’d like to achieve a more professional result (with a glass of prosecco on the side) then give us a call.
Mack Hair and Beauty is a leading hair colourist in Rugby. From pastel pinks and light lilacs to bright blondes and raunchy reds, we have the team, colours and knowledge to achieve the colour you want.