If you have seen our avatars (on the About Section) you’ll have probably noticed that our hair colour is not a ‘natural’ tone. Both of us have, for years, dyed our locks, whether it was blonde or brown, or into the wild and vivid Blues and Reds. So we thought we’d share with you our thoughts on home dying kits and the many, many, different versions out there to try.
I have been grey since I was a teenager, a family trait that was both a help and a curse as a 17-year-old – A easy target for the school bullies, but a great help getting served in the pub on a Friday night (I never got ID’d). So I dyed my hair brown and then blonde and only later did I dare to the dark side – well the Purple side!
I, on the other hand dyed my hair bold and vivid colors as soon as I could, I think the first color was bleach blonde (What with my obsession with Spike from Buffy and all) at about 11 years old. Then I added pink streaks and what would now be called Ombre. Since then I have gone through ever possible color under the rainbow.
These days our colours are still ‘unnatural’ but we have gone through so many dyes that we have filtered out what does and doesn’t work, below are our findings.
So hair we go!
Let’s start with the permanent natural colors
Clairol a long-term hair dye company have made many products over the years, currently their main range is;
Nice and Easy
Well this is a classic home hair dye kit, but it doesn’t work, at least not on my hair
They also have Colour Crave This is another range that doesn’t take on my grey hair, their products seem too weak and wishy-washy to do anything.
I tried this a long time ago but as Ash said it doesn’t take, I tried to dye my blonde hair brown but nope not a thing. Since then I found out that it is tested on animals so I’m even less likely to even consider it.
The Salonist range is great, it takes on my hair, doesn’t burn and has great shading, the problem is finding a stockist in London, for the colour I used.
I don’t recall ever having used this however It does work really well with Ash’s Hair.
This is a ‘Veggie version’ Holland & Barretts own version and it’s crap, it does nothing, well it may stain the bath tub, but not your hair!
I have never tried this at all.
Garnier – One of the big hair companies and have had many products over the years, currently there are these;
This is another of those dyes that didn’t even take on my hair, it goes on fine, but washes off without making any impact to the grey.
Literally put it on my hair and left it for 40 mins and nothing happened, at all, no tint, nothing.
I was actually surprised that Olia is a Garnier product, I used it once and it worked fine, the bottle is a funky shape and the packaging is cleverly designed to tear apart in order to hold the weird teardrop bottle. It takes about 10 minutes to work and covers grey with ease.
I too liked this dye, the bottle is cool and one that you want to reuse as a shampoo bottle its so stylish. It sets well and in almost no time at all, its a permanent dye and is probably one of the longer lasting ones.
This is a foam version dye and it works ok, It’s just not that easy to find in High Street Superstores.
I had really hoped that this would work for me! I liked the idea of foam as a dye sadly it didn’t do much. Don’t get me wrong if you want a tint or a shade darker its fine but for more of a dramatic change don’t bother.
Knight and Wilson
Is there even a point is selling this, it’s confusing, you have to dye dyes, conditioners, faders and then apply this for 10 minutes, that for 5, blah, blah, blah and guess what it did bugger all to my hair.
I didn’t bother trying this, I really do like the range of colors but it didn’t work on his and as far as I know, it doesn’t last long if it does take.
Superdrug’s Colour Sensations
This doesn’t work again, so many of these seem either too weak to take on grey hair and a waste of money
I am a bit skeptical of superstore brand dyes as they almost always useless this is no exception.
L’Oreal are the leaders of the home dye market, there produce a number of different products and Preference has been in existence for many years
Excellence Is the traditional product, I guess for grey hair coverage and somehow (through the golden packaging) seems aimed more at the older clients, with more ‘normal’ blondes and brunettes.
The colors aren’t diverse enough for me to ever consider buying or using this.
This is probably the best of the ‘traditional’ products with more diverse colours and a much better delivery, this works so much better than nearly all the others on the market.
I have used this especially for reds and the purple color that they do. It does take well and lasts long too. I also find my hair looks and feels good, unlike some dyes that dry your hair out.
Is the vivid colours range, the real reds and platinum blondes. I haven’t had cause to use this, though. I used the blonde once, but it went bright – and I mean BRIGHT – ginger, that resulted in emergency visits to Boots for another dye to correct the disaster
I have used the red range and even the purple again. It is pretty good I have used the ombre range on a friends hair. Looking it up now there is a much broader range now which is always a plus.
This is the only mainstream (high street available) product if you want bright pink, purple hair. Schwarzkopf also have Colour Expert range and it is worth a mention, again strong, vivid colours.
This is one I’ve not used, but I love the colour range, it’s just that I need something a little more subtle colour. Bob uses this a lot, so I’ll leave it to her.
I swear by this brand, The blonde is the only dye that has ever made my hair that bleached without completely screwing it up. Not to mention the colors are so vast and much more eclectic. There’s even ‘odd colors’ like blue or green so it’s by far my favorite base level. I have used the colored ones like the blue and even the new rainbow colors and they are pretty crap. You put it on it doesn’t even last 2 days and that’s without washing it. Be that as it may, the deep blue/black was one of my favorites for a while ditto with the purple and red.
Do you want Pink hair? But maybe not so sure if you can suffer it, or you change your mind a lot, then Crazy color is for you.
I have used this on and off for years, it doesn’t last that long (usually about 2-3 washes), but the colour is strong and vivid, These days I use the pale lilac and ice blue.
If you can think of a color, crazy color probably has it. For that reason, it is one of the best companies for the ‘odd’ colors. The only drawback is that it doesn’t last long, being that its only semi-permanent.
This is soo easy to use, small pots of bright colours in so many wonderful colours. You slap it on and leave it, anything from 30 mins to overnight. The colours are vibrant and last longer than any of the High Street versions.
This is the dye I use literally everytime I want to dye my hair. I have used a selection of them since I first heard of them (3 years ago now) I Love them! The colors are so vibrant, they are non-toxic to your hair so I haven’t done so much damage as I would usually have. Literally, I cannot praise this enough! You dollop it on your hair and can leave it all night if you want! Perfect!
I haven’t tried this because it’s so hard to find in the UK.
This is on my list to try but I haven’t as of yet, I hear good things though.
Now this is truly amazing, it is so crap, that if you spray an entire can on one spot of your hair, it does, NOTHING. We tried doing exactly this, so this is speaking from experience.
More like a spray can so it doesn’t stay for long it might be good for someone that wants a subtle pastel tint.
I haven’t tried this not sure if they do a pastels range, must check, given Bob’s rating of it.
I recently bought this on the off chance it worked and I was pleasantly surprised. It goes on in a rich turquoise color and stays that vibrant when rinsed off. It doesn’t last as long as I would like but it is a beautiful color.
Disclaimer – As with all hair dyes what works for one person may not work for another. It is important that you do do an allergy test before you dye so as not to suffer a potentially bad reaction (You know the horror stories) We are not sponsored by any of the above companies (though that would be nice) so it is entirely our opinions.
Do you have any dyes you would recommend?
What colours have you dyed your hair?
Oh and ginger hair is cool, just not on our complexions!
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