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Post in Best Hair Ever

Hair color

Hi! I got my hair dyed black professionally about 2 months ago. I want to do it again but was wondering, can I use a box dye now? If so, which ones are best? I just dont want to mess up my hair or make it a different color than I want and I am not sure how professional dye and box dye interact. Thanks! 

Re: Hair color

@Mallory222 You shouldn't have any issues with using a boxed brand of hair dye, however, you may not get the exact colour match you might be hoping for on your first attempt. I'd suggest shopping somewhere that has a large selection and spending some time looking at the different options.


I like Clairol's Natural Instincts line because I find that the colour is more natural looking with a semi-permanent dye and I feel like I have more control over the saturation, etc. and I am old enough that I don't want to cover the silver hairs that I'm starting to get. 


In general, Clairol package their dyes with a really nice hair conditioner - which is one of the reasons that I don't really switch it up more with other brands.

Re: Hair color

Used to work for a major boxed hair color brand. If you're trying to match your professional color, that's going to be really tough. The reason is that the box dye has a particular level of developer that opens up your hair shaft to let the dye seep in. When you go to a salon, they observe your hair texture, color, and porosity to determine what level of developer you really need. Too strong of a developer and your hair can be damaged. Too weak of a developer and your hair won't take the new color. The chances of you getting a boxed dye that will react with your hair and deposit the exact same color that your stylist did is pretty tough. I do box dye my hair, but that's because I never found a stylist who gave me the color I wanted, so I experimented for literally YEARS until I found a formula and color that I liked. If your stylist is open to it, you can ask them what level developer and what kind of dye they use. Then you can try to order it from somewhere like a Sall Beauty Supply and do it on your own!

Re: Hair color

@Mina4 Sorry but thats not the purpose of developer. You are correct that box colour usually just comes with the same developer throughout - which is 20 volume to be on the safe side. The assumption is that consumers buying box colour are doing so to cover grey. 20 volume is needed to cover grey. The damaging aspect of colour is the ammonia which is in the colour, not the developer. 

As far as @Mallory222's question about the tone not matching, black is the easiest/safest tone to go with. To get an even tone, apply to your roots first, then pull the colour through to your ends to refresh for the last 10 mins. 

Re: Hair color

The entire purpose of developer is to open the hair shaft so as to deposit color. It contains hydrogen peroxide in order to do this. Black might be easier to match than other colors, but there are blue-toned blacks, red-toned blacks. Matching the undertone is key. It’s even harder when you consider your natural hair’s level of eumelanine and pheomelanin. So, not really that easy....

Re: Hair color


I'm well aware there are undertones in hair colour. The OP said nothing about wanting a blue black or a cherry black. 


When you DEPOSIT colour, especially a 1.0, the eumelanin and pheomenin play very little part. Shes not lifting, she doesnt need to worry about NUP. I never suggest drug store products, ever. I'm a salon educator/stylist/owner with over 20 years experience. There is no interaction possible between drug store and professional unless she uses Henna or Feria. 

Re: Hair color

Never said interaction... no idea where you got that from. I recommend you relax and not be so defensive, especially when this is a forum where people are just trying to help each other. Done with this conversation. 


Best of luck OP. 

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