The Reality of Red Hair

Red heads never really go out of fashion and the past couple of years have seem a plethora of examples from the extreme, think Rihanna to the soft, say Julianne Moore with many more in between.
There are degrees of red and as always I find myself loving the more natural looking reds and coppers, the ones that leaving you thinking is she or isn’t she?, but really that is all about personal taste levels and the look you want to achieve.
Throughout history red heads have been feared & adored – loathed & worshipped – degraded & lionized, it seems this hair colour more than any other has provoked a contrast of emotions in us, as love is to hate.

Thankfully in today’s society if you want to be a red head you can easily be one with the help of the right colourist and products. Looking at the table below we can determine our hairs natural level & its underlying pigment, which in turn can help to make the task of becoming a red head easier


As you can see levels –
1-5 have an underlying pigment which is red (cosmetic name auburn)
6 has an underlying pigment red/orange (cosmetic name auburn/copper)
7 has an underlying pigment orange (cosmetic name copper)
8 has an underlying pigment yellow/orange (cosmetic name golden/copper)

and so this simple chart shows us that the term red actually runs through shades very dark levels 1 & 2 to something much lighter level 8, and within these levels there are cool or warm tones and for those of us who like to get really technical cool/warm or warm/cool tones.

Being a red head can be work, it involves lots of maintenance in the prevention of colour fade,
if you are naturally lighter than the red shade you want to be there is no need to use a permanent colour, use a demi permanent (quasi) colour as this will only deposit colour and will not fade as quickly.
For touch ups I would never pull the colour through I would use a Demi colour on the ends, much gentler and again helps with the fading.I also find a clear glaze helps to keep the red from fading, and have sometimes used white vinegar as a rinse on heads that are really having problems holding their colour.

Once you achieve your desired shade of red how do you maintain it? Daily aggressors such as
thermal heat, wind, water, sunshine, shampoo and chlorine can cause your red tones to fade, so it’s recommended that heat protective products are used for styling and that colour saving shampoos and conditioners with UVA protectors for cleansing. Washing your hair every other day rather than every day can also help with fade.

At the end of the day whether you chose to be a fire engine red or a soft golden copper, enjoy your hair colour look after it, keeping it shiny and healthy looking, but most of all enjoy it.

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