Skincare Skills

by Lydia

Skincare blogger

August 11, 2021

Whether you have a whole board on Pinterest hair color styles you can't wait to try, or you're itching for something new, one thing's for sure, with the rise of high-quality box dyes, it's becoming more common to brave it and tend to your beauty routines at home. Plus, it's a great way to save you some dimes in the process, though, only when you know what you're doing. Most stylists actually recommend that when dyeing your hair yourself, you should stay within two shades, lighter or darker, of your current color.

So when searching for the best home hair color, you'll want to ensure that you keep that tip in mind. Plus, you're also looking for hair dye that will leave your hair feeling nourished with a long-lasting color that won't wash off after a few showers.

We explore choosing the best home hair color and review our top picks of the best at-home hair dyes.

What Is Hair Dye?

This is a chemical used to change hair color. There are four types that you're likely to come across:

  • Temporary Hair Colors: These come in the form of rinses, gels, mousses, and sprays. The formula is designed to sit on the hair's surface and is washed out with the next shampoo.
  • Semi-Permanent Hair Dye: They penetrate the hair shaft and don't rinse off with water like a temporary color. Semi-permanent hair colors often come in liquid, gel, or aerosol forms.
  • Permanent Hair Color: This type requires more work, but the color lasts until the new roots grow. The formula contains hydrogen peroxide; hence, it covers grays more effectively and can lighten hair color, unlike other dyes. They don't penetrate deeply into the hair shaft but get locked within it due to a series of chemical reactions while the dye is applied. Consequently, permanent dyes generally cannot be washed out with shampoo, although repeated shampooing may reduce the color over time.
  • Gradual or progressive dyes: They come in the form of a rinse that slightly darkens the hair by binding to compounds on its surface. Its usually applied daily until a dark enough shade is achieved, after which it may be used less often to maintain the color. They don't wash off readily or run when the hair gets wet.

We've listed below our top picks of the best at-home hair dyes that are sure to leave your hair feeling nourished and with long-lasting color. 

 Best At-Home Hair Dyes

Best At-Home Hair Dyes - Reviews

It's no surprise that the French-based company, L'Oréal, is an expert when it comes to beauty. Since 1973, they've been using a fade-defying color system for a long-lasting dye that won't rinse away with each shampoo.

This is the best at-home hair dye color kit to get if looking for a formula that eave your own hair shiny and the color won't fade after just a few washes.

The translucent gel formula contains golden camelina oil, antioxidant vitamin E, and a UV filter, thus assuring shiny hair and nourished strands.

With over 50 shades, you're sure to find a permanent hair color that works for your skin tone or covers those gray hairs you're worried about. The hair dye lasts up to eight weeks.

Pros

  • Over 50 shades to choose from
  • Easy to use
  • The conditioning treatment is great

Cons

  • Has a strong smell

The coloring process can be quite heavy on the strands. Hence that's why it's recommended to search for a hair dye whose formula comes packed with conditioning and nourishing ingredients.

Maintaining moisture is essential when it comes to natural hair. The Dark and Lovely Fade Rich conditioning Hair color is specially formulated to cater to all hair types: natural, wavy, curly, textured, relaxed, transitioning, and more. Hence, making it the best home hair color for natural hair.

The hair color formula assures up to 100 percent gray coverage while leaving your hair looking shiny and silky. It lasts up to 8 weeks.

Pros

  • Complete gray coverage
  • Easy to apply
  • Lasts long
  • Vibrant shade collection
  • Formulated for natural, relaxed, and textured hair

Cons

  • Some reviews noted that on certain hair types, the hair dye did not change the color

The Garnier Nutrisse Permanent Hair Color formula contains a blend of tripe fruit oils: avocado, olive, and shea combined with color boost technology, designed to boost and nourish bold, permanent hair color, even to dark hair.

The hair creme comes in a complete hair dye kit, making it the perfect choice if looking to enhance your natural hair color for a root touch, a temporary ook, or a permanent color.

Pros

  • Easy to use and has a great scent
  • Long-lasting hair color
  • Formulated for dark bases

Cons

  • Some reviews noted that the colors come out differently from what was expected

One of the things most people dread when thinking about dyeing their hair is the smell of the hair dye. However, with this hair color formula, you don't have to worry about that.

Plus, what makes it the best home hair color is that it not only conditions your hair but is also formulated with a keratin complex to your strands feeling stronger and looking shinier than ever.

The hair color formula is designed to repair your  inner hair structure and coat the hair surface after coloration, leaving your hair feeling strong and healthy.

Lastly, the hair color assures 100% gray coverage.

Pros

  • Great for dyeing gray hair ( long-lasting gray coverage)
  • Leaves your hair feeling shiny and soft
  • Has a refreshing smell and is easy to use

Cons

  • Takes a couple of washes to get the color out when you first dye it
  • Not long-lasting

With this at-home dye, you can be sure your hair will be feeling well catered for once you're done with the dyeing process. The buttercream box dye comes packed with a formula of three kinds of butter: mango, shea, and coconut oil. In addition, the post-treatment mask contains a blend of argan, avocado, and sunflowers oils to keep your hair deeply moisturized.

You can get up to 8 weeks of shiny color with this box dye. It also comes with a handy 3 in 1 brush for easy application.

Pros

  • Application is pretty easy
  • Has a smooth texture and doesn't have a strong smell
  • Some shades have a rich color

Cons

  • Not long-lasting

Factors To Consider When Buying Best Home Hair Color

a) Read The Hair Dye Box

You've finally decided you're taking the step of dyeing your hair. The first step involves choosing the right box of hair dye. Ideally, you're looking for a formula that includes the least amount of harmful ingredients like peroxide, ammonia, and alcohol to avoid hair breakage and excessive dryness.

Additionally, you're looking for the right shade that will match your skin tone. A great tip is not to rely on the model's picture on the box as it can be very misleading. Instead, pay attention to the words used to describe the shade and the numbers that indicate the relative darkness.

For instance, colors described as ash tend to have more green tones in them are best suited for people looking to deal with brassiness. Violet tends to have purple tones, while golden will incorporate more yellow tones and is ideal for people looking for gray coverage. Neutral can mean several things but usually implies a blue base to the shade.

The number lets you know how dark the dye will be. Hair dye ranges on a scale from 1 (black) to 12 ( platinum blonde), so the lower the digit, the deeper the shade. It's advisable to use the shade guide provided on the side of the box as a guiding tool to how the color will work on your hair type.

b) Demi and Semi-Permanent Formulas

When searching for the best home hair color, it's recommended to avoid permanent color. Instead, it's best to opt for demi and semi-permanent formulas which are ammonia-free and less damaging to the hair strand. The at-home hair colors are direct dyes that don't switch your color, and they stain the hair strain with minimal to no damage.

c) Consider All-Inclusive Color Kits

If you've tried coloring your hair at home, you've probably accidentally dyed your bathroom sink or hands in the process at least once. Buying a color kit that comes with all the tools aids in ensuring that you avoid the mess. Such kits come with latex-free gloves, a bowl, bottle, brush, developer, which are considered must-haves to mix and apply any color.

d) Conditioning Ingredients

At-home hair color with an ammonia-free formula can still, to an extent, be damaging to your hair. Hence to avoid this, when shopping for the best at-home hair color, consider formulas full of conditioning ingredients like hydrating oils and nourishing kinds of butter. The aim is to leave your hair in better condition before you colored it.

e) Avoid Formulas That Require Heat

You want to avoid any color kit with a formula that requires heat. If processing color and it requires heat, this usually means that you're lightening or lifting your natural color. This can result in unwanted warm tones. If considering lightening and lifting your hair, it's best to have this done by a professional.

Your Ultimate Guide To Applying At-Home Hair Color Like A Pro

We prepared this handy guide that takes you through some quick steps when dyeing your hair at home.

a) Get An Expert Consultation

Who said asking for help is a bad thing? If you've got a friendly relationship with a usual hairstylist/colorist, you can always get in touch and ask if they'd be happy to guide you through the process. The best part is that you'd be getting advice from an expert, so you avoid making any costly mistakes. In addition, you can support them by paying for consultation while they can support you by ensuring you pick the best at-home hair color and formula for your hair.

b) Dirty Hair Is Best

Once you've selected your best at-home hair color, it's advisable to apply it to hair that hasn't been recently washed. This is because the hair's natural oil aid in protecting the strands as they process. Plus, this is one of the benefits of dyeing your hair at home; no one will judge you for dirty hair.

c) Always Read & Follow The T&Cs ( Terms and Conditions)

Safety first when it comes to dealing with hair dye. Ensure that you carefully read all the instructions on the box and don't skip any of them. You're likely to notice that they require you to do a patch test. Don't overlook that. It's important, especially if you're using a new brand. Certain ingredients, especially in dark hair dyes, can cause a strange skin reaction, so it's best to be sure that you're safe.

Ensure that you're wearing gloves to protect your nails and skin. Generally, box dye contains one pair, but you should always have a second pair to wear when you wash the hair color out. Lastly, you want to dye your hair in a well-ventilated area.

d) Don't Overdo It

If the look you're going for seems a little complicated for the classic DIYer, then it's advisable to have a professional do it. Certain techniques like balayage and highlights might require you to head on to your usual colorist to have it done. This also includes seeking drastic color changes. However, it's better than risking your own hair. At home, hair dyes are best suited for enhancing or touching up the color you currently have. For instance, if you already have a blonde base, you have more freedom to play around with bright colors that can show up better.

e) Vaseline and Olive Oil Are Your Bestfriends

When dyeing your hair, always have a tub of Vaseline available, especially if going with a dark color. A generous dab of this or any thick petroleum-based moisturizer smeared along your temples, hairline, neck, and ears will aid in keeping the hair dye from staining your skin.

It's a cheap and effective solution that protects your skin from potential blotchy dye stains. However, if you wind up getting these stains, worry not, as they can be removed by a ball of cotton wool in olive oil and rubbing it over the affected areas.

f) Beware of Dyeing Dyed Hair

When your hair is already dyed, you need to approach it very carefully. Its a more complicated getting an even, undamaged result with pre-dyed hair, and it's advisable to have a professional do it. The risks of stripy or patchy color, overprocessed hair, and hot root are too high.

g) Aftercare Is Key!

Once you manage to dye your hair and it's the hair color you wanted, it's time for some TLC. ( tender, love, and care in the form of aftercare)

The aftercare determines how healthy and shiny your hair will keep looking. Plus, you also want the hair color to last.

The best way to ensure the color lasts is not to wash it too frequently. Dry shampoo will be key. You can also use color-protecting products, protect your hair from the sun with hats, limit heat styling and condition it well.

The shampoo and conditioner you use should suit the hair texture, color, and tone you want to protect from fading.

About the author 

Lydia

My name is Lydia Adams and I have been a skincare blogger in one way or another for many, many years.

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