12 Reasons Your Hair Color Looks Brassy and Flat

Posted May 17, 2023 by in Beauty

So, you went to a hair salon, and you asked for a hair coloring treatment. Or you might have bought an expensive hair color, and you tried to dye your hair at home, thinking everything would be fine. But the end result is less than satisfying. You might think it is the hair color to blame, but in reality, it is likely you. Sometimes, we make mistakes that result in our hair color looking cheap, dull, and like it was done by a five-year-old. Sorry! 

What are those mistakes? How can you avoid them? Read on to find out:

Mistake No.1 – Wrong shade

You have a natural light brown shade and suddenly decided to go platinum blonde. It won’t be easy to get there. If you colored your hair too far from your natural shade, it will show up. You can go full dark on light brown hair, but it is all about choosing the right shade. For example, if you want dark hair, you can try some deep chestnut brown over blue-black. You will still get the result you are looking for. Or if you have black hair, and you want to go blonde, you cannot go ash blonde in one go. 

The trick is to choose a color shade that will not look forced and fake on your head. You want to try and emulate your natural shade as much as possible when you’re doing things on your own. 

Mistake No.2 – Going crazy with highlights

When it comes to highlights, we often forget their original purpose. And that is to highlight. In other words, your hair gets shine, dimension, and the highlights help your facial features pop. Your highlights have to look like they were caused by the sun. And that is hard to achieve when you over-highlight your entire head.

Remember, highlights are a subtle addition of color to your hair. If your entire head is too light, it is only reasonable that people think your highlights are fake. Even worse, highlights can sometimes cause brassiness, especially if not done properly. You will have to look for toner for orange hair in that case.

To get a natural look, ask your hair stylist to give you a nice balance of highlights throughout your hair using the babylight technique. This will prevent a harsh line as your hair grows out. It may be more expensive to get babylights, but you can go months without getting it done again due to the softer grow-out line. Ultimately helping you save money in the long run. Or, you can always go for a balayage, a technique that gives you a more organic and natural look with very little upkeep since there will be no grow-out lines to worry about. A blue or purple hair mask used twice a month will keep you balayage toned down and beautiful. 

Mistake No.3 – You went for super-chunky highlights

The most important thing when you go to a salon to get your hair colored is to tell your stylist exactly what you want. If you want prominent highlights, make sure to tell that to your stylist. Make sure they use the veining technique, which will help prevent tiger stripes. The goal here is to make your highlights thinner towards the roots, and thicker by the ends.

Mistake No.4 – Ignoring complexion

Hair is an organic and integral part of your face. And once you understand that, you can achieve a better hairstyle. You cannot completely disregard your complexion. Let’s be honest, your skin tone and hair color should match. Even if you choose a hair color from a box at the store, make sure you consult with a colorist first. You want to get an idea of your color options.

Mistake No.5 – Bleaching brown hair

If you want to go from super dark to really light hair, you absolutely have to talk to a professional. This is one hair coloring treatment you cannot do it at home. Forget those DIY tricks and tips for a moment, or you might be looking for how to get rid of brassy hair. Box color is not able to fully lift dark pigment out of strands, and the result is orange hair and brassiness—and lots of damage.

Go to a salon, where a professional will know how much peroxide to use, and how long to leave it on your hair. As mentioned before, if you have dark hair and you want to go significantly lighter, it will take 2-4 sessions over many months. Otherwise you risk damaging your hair. 

This is usually a very pricey service, about $250-$500 for just one session. For a more affordable option, consider using Salon Apprentice. You’re able to get services done at top-tier salons in larger cities for under $100 (and free in some cases). If you opt for this, you’ll most likely be the model in a color class, or a licensed apprentice will be doing your hair under the guidance of a master stylist. I have personally used Salon Apprentice many times for both haircuts and balayage, and I have always been happy.

Mistake No.6 – Dyeing roots on your own

You have to understand that the hairs along the hairline are finer than the rest of your strands. That means they absorb hair color quicker. As a result, your roots can look too dark, or in other words, like shoe polish. When you are covering gray hairs, go for a second box color that is one shade lighter for the face-framing pieces, and match your natural color as best as possible with an all-over shade.

You can also opt for a natural hair dye shampoo made from natural essences specifically designed to cover gray hair. A perfect alternative to coloring your gray hair without going to the salon.

Mistake No.7 – Using one color for the entire head

Speaking of how different parts of your hair absorb hair dye differently, you should not use one color to dye your entire head. Let’s say you go with dark brown all over your head. Some parts will absorb the color quickly and more, and others will not. You want to create dimensions, but instead, your hair will look flat.

How to achieve dimensions? Even if you are using one color, it is possible. Apply hair dye on the hairline in the last few minutes before rinsing out the dye. The hairline, as mentioned previously, absorbs hair dye quicker and deeper.

Mistake No.8 – Blonde turns orange

Some women want blonde hair every now and then, and instead of going to the salon, they try a DIY treatment with color at home. You bought an all-over blonde kit at home, and you think you are ready. The problem is, these boxes do not have a strong level of peroxide to fully lift the pigment in your hair. As a result, instead of blonde, your hair will look orange. Go to a salon, and ask the professional to keep your blonde one level brighter than where you want it to be, and to use less toner on the ends of your hair.

Mistake No. 9 – Going from roots to ends

In some cases, dyeing your hair from roots to ends is fine. But that doesn’t work every time. For example, if you have regrowth, you are only supposed to coat the roots with color, and just an inch or so past the regrowth. If you apply dye from roots to ends every single time you color your hair, the result will be awful. The same applies for highlights as well. You do not want to coat the entire length of strands with bleach every time. This will seriously damage your hair

Mistake No.10 – Your blonde looks fake

When it comes to blonde hair, dimension is an absolute must. This gives you a more natural-looking hairstyle, and you do not want to overdo highlights. In other words, do not ever allow your blonde to become one solid color. For a Gisele look, you want a healthy blend of both light and dark blonde.

Mistake No.11 – Too many colors at once

If you are applying hair dye on your own, avoid doing too many colors at once. Not all shades are color-matched. If you do this, you might end up with layer upon layer of rainbow-inspired dyed hair. Certain colors do not blend together. If blended together, they result in an undesirable color. That is why it is crucial to talk with a hair coloring professional.

Mistake No.12 – Color crazy for a long time

We have only one thing to say to you.  STOP COLORING YOUR HAIR. After a while, your hair needs some free time of chemicals, bleaching agents, and everything else. Stop coloring your hair for a while, and use a super-hydrating treatment mask that will repair all the damage from heat and bleaching. If you color your hair constantly for a long period, it will be a mess and start to break off. 

If it’s too late and the damage has already been done, see your stylist for a haircut to prevent breakage from your split ends and splurge on the K18 hair mask or Olaplex—both have the ability to rebuild the broken bonds in your hair.

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