A blog chronicling the adventures of a Chicago-based hairstylist and makeup artist!

December 10, 2010

How To Speak To Your Stylist About Haircolor.

     Color can be a confusing thing to describe.  Some people have a different understanding of what words like "brassy", "honey" or "caramel" translate to in regard to hair pigments.  What is "auburn" to one person may be "mahogany" to another.  So in order to get great results from your hair color service, you must first understand the way a hairstylist approaches color.
     There are two major factors to hair color; level and tone
     Level is the lightness/darkness of the hair.  It ranges from level 1 to level 12.  Often, clients confuse level for tone during consultation.  Here is a visual to understand levels of hair color:

     Tone is the underlying pigment in the haircolor.  This is represented on a color wheel as opposed to a spectrum.  Think of level and tone as variables in an algebraic equation: Level + Tone= Haircolor.  One person could be a level 4 Gold (Dark Golden Brown) while another could be a level 4 Red (Dark Red).  They are both the same level of darkness but the hair will look very different on each individual.  The same goes for levels; a level 6 Ash (Light Ash Brown) will look very different from a level 10 Ash (Light Ash Blonde). 
     In order to have a successful color service first decide the level of lightness/darkness you want to see and then decide tone.  Understand that when you say you want blonde hair that could mean a variety of things to a stylist.  They could see you as a beige blonde when in reality you'd prefer to be a golden blonde.  If you have trouble describing what you want, bring in a picture.  Show the stylist exactly what you want.  I hope this post helps you to describe your desired look with clarity at your next hair appointment!  Feel free to comment with any further questions.

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