Santa Cruz
(831) 459-8450
(831) 479-1026

Hair Coloring at Home

Pretty Feet

Audrey Help!
I’ve been coloring my hair at home with the same permanent color for a while. Now it’s starting to look darker than it did before and it is getting really dry. What can I do to fix it?

Great question. A few things can happen when you color your own hair. Firstly, you really cannot really see most of the areas your are coloring so a precise application, especially in the back, is almost impossible.

When you use permanent or semi permanent color you should only be coloring the outgrowth for the full processing time. It is really important not to keep overlapping the color on your previously colored hair. This leads to the majority of the damage and worse still, you can start to over depositing color, making your hair darker and darker each time.

Here are a few guidelines to follow if you are a haircolor DIY-er.


Make sure you have adequate lighting and multiple mirrors so you can really see what you are doing, even in the back.

Split your hair into 4 sections and clip them up. Work on one quadrant at a time, applying color on the outgrowth only, in cleanly parted, narrow sections. This will lessen the damage, insure even coverage, and stop over depositing color. If a bottle application is tricky, try a bowl and brush method instead, or vice versa. For some, a different method may be easier to control.


If your mid-shaft and/or ends aren’t too dark, they may need to be freshened up during root touchups. If they do, try a "soap cap” method. Take the remainder of your color and mix it in equal parts with a sulfate free, color-safe shampoo. Wait until the last few minutes of processing time and run the mixture through the faded mid-shaft and/or ends, allowing yourself enough time to get it all the way through the hair, and let it sit for 5 minutes before you rinse. Make sure to finish with a restoring conditioning treatment to close the cuticle, seal in color, and add shine and bounce.

When to seek help

If your color is now too dark, you can try using a heavy clarifying shampoo like Paul Mitchell Shampoo Three to strip away some of the color. If that doesn’t work, I do not recommend trying to fix it with lighteners or color-removers at home. You may end up damaging your hair past the point of no return. Stop by and get a color consultation from one of our talented stylists and ask a sales associate to help you find the perfect products to support your coloring and styling habits!

Here's to beautiful hair!


Have a beauty related question? We'd love to hear it, and so would our readers. Email your questions to

We’d love to help.

If you don't have a stylist or esthetician you work with, give us a call and we'll set up an appointment to help you with your skin-care or hair-care products. We have several make-up artists that are happy to help you find new colors and techniques that make you feel beautiful. Letting us know when you are coming in will ensure we can give you all our attention. This is a free service, and there is no obligation to buy our products.


Disclaimer: This newsletter is a compilation of many voices and is not necessarily a single person. We have done our best to represent the subject matter as thoroughly as possible, but we make no guarantees. Please use this newsletter as only one of several sources, as it contains both facts and opinions.