Hair Colouring Gone Wrong: How to Fix Your Client’s Bad Hair Colour

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We’re sure all you hair colourists out there have seen every example of hair colouring gone wrong in the book.

Maybe your client was aiming for dirty blonde locks but has ended up with grey hair. Or, perhaps her chunky DIY highlights have the unfortunate effect of making her look like a badger.

Whatever the hair colouring disaster, there’s always a way to undo the damage. Here are some common hair colour mistakes and how to fix them.

Leaving the Colour on Too Long

Often, one of the problems clients have, when they colour their own hair, is that they leave the colour on for too long.

Sometimes it’s because they got hooked on the latest episode of their favourite series and forgot to rinse the colour out after 30 minutes. More often, it’s because they start at the roots and slowly work their way down. They may then remember to wash out the colouring after half an hour, but the colour has been on the roots for a lot longer than the allotted time.

If your client was going lighter, this can result in ‘hot roots’, where the colour is often brighter nearer the scalp. As an experienced colourist, you’ll know how to fix over-bleached highlights by darkening the roots. You can then even out the hair colour with a more natural, overall colour.

If your client was trying to go darker, the shade might be more intense than they had hoped. Glossing treatments can help to diffuse the colour. You could also suggest adding warm highlights to break up the dark base colour and give a more natural effect.

Brassy Blonde Hair

When trying to achieve warmer blonde tones, hair can sometimes take on yellow, brassy tones. Bad blonde colouring jobs can even look orange in the worst cases.

Knowing how to fix orange hair is essential for any good colourist as it’s such a common problem when clients colour their hair blonde at home.

To avoid this happening in future, you’ll need to lighten the hair down to a blonder shade as a way to lift out the orange tones. Once you’ve taken out the brassiness, you can drop it back down to right tone and colour. For clients with natural dark hair, this means lightening the hair and then adding darker ash tones into it.

Grey-Toned Ash Blonde Hair

On the other end of the scale, attempts at dying hair ash blonde can sometimes result in hair that looks grey, or even green.

To undo this hair colour problem, you need to strip the grey tones from your client’s hair. It’s wise to use a protein treatment to help replenish your client’s locks too, especially if it’s fragile, curly or dry.

You can then add in golden, peachy shades to add warmth and tone down the grey tones of the failed ash blonde colour.

The Colour Is Too Dark

Your client was aiming to achieve a rich chocolate brown colour at home. However, she ended up with jet-black locks any teenage goth would be proud of.

In these cases, you can tone down the colour a notch in one sitting. Stripping out some of the colour and using a protein treatment for added nourishment works well as a first step. You may also want to add highlights or balayage to break up the dark colour and lighten those lengths.

If they have made a drastic change from blonde to black and want to go back to their original colour, this will take some time. Explain that you can tone down the colour a little for now. But, they will have to come back in two to four weeks for another round of treatment.

Stripy Highlights

DIY highlight kits might seem like a cheaper way to achieve a salon-style look. As all you colourists know, these kits often result in stripy and unnatural-looking highlights.

Chunky highlights might have been in fashion back in the early 2000s, but thankfully hair colour trends have moved on since then.

The best colour correction hair method for chunky highlights is to focus on darkening the roots to match the rest of your client’s hair. Then, your client might like to try midlights, one of the latest hair trends for brightening up hair in a natural way.

Patchy Hair Colour

Patchy hair colour can often be a challenge as there isn’t a one-size-fits-all solution. But, whether the client has mismatched roots or random patches of uneven hair colour, a good colourist should know how to fix patchy hair coluring.

Sometimes colouring can take to certain spots of hair better than others, particularly at the roots. Although, often, patchy hair colour occurs when clients are unable to see where they’ve applied the colour or not, especially at the back of their head.

If the roots are a problem, section the client’s hair and apply colouring to the roots first. Then blend down the rest of the lengths to even out the colour.

If the client’s hair colour is uneven in various areas, your fix depends on what your client was aiming for in the first place. Your first option is to strip the whole colour down and apply a more even tone to the client’s hair as a whole. Or, it could be easier to work with the base colour as it is and blend in natural tones and highlights to mask the patches.

One-Dimensional Hair Colour

DIY colouring jobs can often look flat and one-dimensional, especially right after applying them. This is because applying a single colour all over your hair blends your natural tones and highlights too much. This results in a uniform colour that looks more like a wig than real hair.

A glossing treatment can help to add shine and dimension to recently-coloured hair. Or, show your client how you can help her hair achieve a more natural, multi-tonal effect with subtle balayage, strobing or shadow toning.

Hair Colouring Gone Wrong and How to Fix It

Thanks to your experience and expert knowledge of colouring techniques, you’re always on hand to fix your clients’ hair colouring gone wrong disasters and get their hair looking better than ever.

We’re here to provide that same level of reassurance for you. We provide salon insurance coverage dedicated to helping you protect your business.

For more information, contact us today, or get a quote to discover the best insurance policy for your salon business.

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