Thursday, 20 January 2011

Another Hair Disaster!

Of course, I'm probably being a bit over dramatic, it's just my hair and the World has not ended but I hope you will forgive me a little whinge! I dyed my hair on Monday, it's a shade I have used before with no issue but after rinsing and drying I realised my hair was virtually black. As it is an Ash shade, there's no warmth and with it being so dark it looks rather stark.

I took a little advice from the very sage Grace from London Makeup Girl and embarked on a little colour fading experiment this morning. One hot oil treatment and two washes with anti-dandruff shampoo later and this is how it looks.

My hair is soft and glossy but as you can see, it's still very dark. Even my husband has commented on my 'black hair.' Mostly, he knows better than to say anything so it's a fair gauge of how bad it looks!

So, my lovely readers, I need your advice. Do I stick with it, ramp up the makeup to get over the harsh look and wait for it to fade? Or should I run for the nearest packet of Colour B4 and get busy with the rinsing?

As an aside, I'm wearing the eyeshadows from the BECCA Enigma palette in the photos. It was kindly sent to me try and I love it. It gives a lovely smoky eye that has made me feel a little less self conscious walking around with my surprisingly dark hair!

Disclosure: Both the Enigma palette and hair dye were PR samples. Which just goes to show, you can't win 'em all folks!


  1. I love black hair (been dying mine since I was 18) and I really think it brings out your eyes. You can also get away with wearing stronger blush and eye looks so do a bit of experimenting before you strip it out.

    I vote to keep it =) x

  2. I think you should just rock some red lips - solves the 'problem' instantly! Ha, otherwise try mixng bicarbonate of soda with washing up liquid...I used to do that to fade colours when I was younger. You'll need lots of conditioner afterwards, though!

  3. Hi, looking at the picture I don't think it is as harsh as you describe. It's obvious that you aren't comfortable with it as it is so I think you should probably go with some sort of change which makes you feel happy with yourself.
    You are still beautiful!

  4. Oh dear, well it still looks fine, but things like that are why I never ever dye my own hair any more, always that risk of things not going to plan.

  5. Its very similar to my colour. I think its really lovely on you actually and suits very well, if it were me I'd leave it as it is!

    But is not me and since you are calling it a disaster I'd see a hairdresser xx

  6. It looks good to me :) but that may be because I do have black hair myself. :-/

  7. In all honesty, it's not as bad as you think. As a matter of fact, it's fine, but I understand how us women feel about such "disasters".
    I wouldn't mess anymore with it, because any other treatments, DIY or not, right now would just cause unnecessary damage.
    Just play with what you have, make up, different hair styles, accesories etc, and it's going to fade away in 2-3 weeks anyway.

  8. Might be best to let it fade, somehow things always go wrong for me using something over something else... It does look OK anyway - though being a redhead with redhaired children I'm biased in favour of warmer colours, lol!

  9. I think it looks really good, but we all know that pictures can sometimes be a bit deceiving! If in the real life (rather than the photographic world) it's darkness makes you shriek and hide from mirrors then just crack out the colour B4. It might be worth giving it a couple of weeks first though just to see if you can get it to fade out a bit first.

  10. You don't need to apologise for being overdramatic about your hair hun! It's your hair! It's very important!

    When my hair was dyed too dark (it was similar to your case, an ashy tone with no warmth, although not as dark) I got some very, very, very fine highlights run through it to lighten it a bit and add dimension. Remember very very very fine and consult a colourist at a salon as to what shade exactly.

    Tips in the mean time:
    A little bit more makeup, perhaps a bit of bronzer or more bronzer.
    Try some self tanning, whether it be light/gradual type or something like XEN Tan (which I love). That will warm your complexion up a bit and negate the need for more foundation to achieve colour.
    A little bit of eyebrow pencil might help too.
    But I think less is more on all these counts, have a little play about to see what you're comfy with before doing anything drastic and drying to your hair.

    It does look in great condition and the dark colour does bring out the blue in your eyes.

    Try not to stress too much, hair can change. It's ok. We've all been there.

    Hugs! x

    Clever Rabbit Beauty Blog
    Polish. Potions. Whatever.

    Follow me on twitter: @Clever_Rabbit

  11. I like it on you - I think it brings out the green in your eyes. But totally relate to your anxiety. Aeons ago when I went to hairdressers I came out black the colour had *taken really well* which I suppose is a euphemism for oh dear we have f**ked up here. I went to collect my daughter from school, she must have been about 5 and she walked right past me already anxious that I wasn't in my normal spot and burst into tears. Still at least you are experimenting, me I'm hiding behind my greying curtains! Jan x

  12. I feel your pain. As an avid hair colour-changer before children ( now I haven't the time to dedicate to maintenance) I have had my fair share of disasters! We have very similar colouring and whilst I did dye my hair black at one point and it was striking, I ALWAYS needed a full face or I looked dead. So, I suggest either a box of Colour B4 from Boots or something like Loreal Colour Experte (which has colour and highlights) in a chesnut shade to warm it up and then a red colour enhancing shampoo to keep it going. Good luck!

  13. @Karleigh: I think my makeup looks a little washed out here (I think my hair was insisting on centre stage) compared to how it looks in person. I agree that stronger colours would probably help. Plenty in the box to try!

    @Beauty’s Bad Habit: I like the idea of wearing red more. I don’t need that many excuses to get the Tom Ford out ;). I’ll have a go with the Punky Pink too, see how that works with the darker hair.

    @KTGB: Thank you lovely, that’s a really nice comment. I’m willing to give a bit of time and see how it goes. I know it’s only hair but anything new can be a bit of a shock!

    @Pop! Makeup: It’s true enough that things can easily go wrong. I’m a little surprised as this brand and colour has always worked well for me in the original formula. Ah well, I’ll live!

    @Charlie: Yes, disaster is possible a bit of a strong word in the circumstance. My shock mostly comes from the fact that this colour normally comes out about the same as my natural colour. Of course, like the knitwit that I am, my first response is not to go to the hairdresser. I don’t think there’s much hope for me ;)

  14. @Ki: Thank you. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with black hair and my apologies if my wording came across the wrong way. I’m just concerned that I can’t pull off such a shade and tone. The fact that I was expecting it to come out as my natural colour probably hasn’t helped.

    @U: Thank you. I know it’s not the end of the World but I do feel a bit exposed. I think I will let it settle for now and have a play around to see if I can feel a bit more comfortable. I’ve used the Colour B4 in the past and it’s fine. It’s a chemical reaction that shrinks the colour molecules in the hair rather than bleaching or similar. The only thing that puts me off is I could easily strip the hair and end up doing the same thing again with another home dye. As you say in a couple of weeks this will probably have faded to the colour I want anyway (fingers tightly crossed!).

    @too_busy_to_stitch: I’m envious of your natural red hair. I’d love to have something more interesting than brown! I’ve red and auburn hair in the past and loved it. I am going to leave my hair for now and see how I feel after a couple of weeks. Hopefully it will mellow on it own!

    @Ms. Wedgie: You’re right, I think it might actually look a little less flattering in person. I am going to take your advice though and leave it a couple of weeks and see how I feel. It is of course typical of my luck that I will be seeing people next week. Oh well…

  15. @CR: Thank you so much for the advice. I did wonder about fake tan, I might give it a try. I was also wondering about tinting my eyebrows. I had been considering it anyway. I always wear pencil but tinting them may get round the startling look without any make up on!!

    @Jan: Oh yes, that definitely sounds like a potential hairdresser euphemism! A friend at nursery didn’t spot me yesterday and I was worried it was the hair. Fortunately the children haven’t said anything about it. Maybe they’re used to me do strange things with colours and I have de-sensitised them?! Enough of your greying curtains anyway. Your hair looks grand!

    Thanks for all of your comments. I really appreciate your thoughts. I feel a little more Zen now. Though, that might be because I haven’t looked in the mirror for a while!
    Jane x

  16. I don't think it's bad at all. But if you wanted to make it warmer, perhaps you could use an auburn colour on top? I'm guessing it will wash out eventually, so you could always just leave it. I think it's fine.

  17. Hey! No apologising please! I think my comment came off the wrong way - I meant, since I have black hair, I never notice it looking harsh on others.

    However, I have dark olive skin (MAC NC44) and black hair suits my skintone. However, I do think you can carry it off - you'll grow to love it :)

  18. Woah that is dark! What colour was it meant to be? I do think you can pull it off, but I know that feeling of just not feeling comfy in a hair colour very well ;)

  19. @Fragrant Witch: Yes, without makeup I look quite shocking. It’s why I wondered about a bit of fake tan and tinting my brows. Though hopefully it wouldn’t come off a bit Katie Price. I’ve always wanted to try one of the Couleur Experte dyes but I am nervous. It definitely needs more warmth when it’s this dark. I will take a gander.

    @Anitacska: Thank you. I hadn’t really thought of trying to warm it with auburn but I suppose one of those shader/toner things might work ok.

    I’ve been having a shocking time with my eldest so I think that hasn’t helped in my over-reacting to hair colour! I have a PCAHMS person coming tomorrow though so fingers crossed I start getting somewhere. How are things with you?

    @Ki: Phew, I’m glad I didn’t offend. I think with some extra work with makeup I can definitely get round it. I will have to stop looking in the mirror first thing as without any makeup is when it looks most startling!

    @Grace: Yes, woah! And this is after stripping some of the colour out!! The colour was Medium Ash Brown. Hmmmmmm. You were right about the oil, there was a lot of colour running off when I rinsed it. I think this may be the one and only time you’ll hear me say, I don’t think there’s enough red in it! I don’t know how I always manage to time these disasters with trips to London either!

    Jane x

  20. Glad you got the Enigma palette, I really like it.
    I think the hair colour suits you and I like the contrast against your skintone,I bet a slightly sparkly charcoal shadow concentrated near the lashline, paired with a slightly peach lip would work well with that dark glossy hair. However, if you feel sad when you look at it I'd just pay the money to go to a good salon to see if they could alter it a bit so you are happy with it.
    You know what has suddenly hit my wants list, NARS spring, really like the look of the trio and duo (the one with the olive green), do you think you will get anything from it? x

  21. Seriously, I don't think this hair color looks harsh on you, it relaly makes your blue eyes pop!

  22. i have been there modesty brown and i feel you! no worries. try some tan or try to have light eyes (light iridiscent e/s) /bright lipstick. see it as way to experiment with different colours. leinti nti

  23. I think your hair looks great. I've recently been through a hair disaster so I know the feeling but it really is striking on you. Use a tiny bit of bronzer maybe but try to live with it for a while and see if you get used to it. I say thumbs up.

  24. I am so sorry you are upset with your hair color, but, honestly, it does not look at all harsh in the picture, and I wouldn't have thought that it was a 'mistake' if you hadn't said it was. However, it is really awful when you hate your hair, since it's such a big part of your look. I would wash it more often than usual in the hope that the color would fade.

    Love your blog and read it faithfully. :)

    (I don't know much about posting on blogs and had to choose 'anonymous', but wanted you to know I'm Janet from Geneva, IL, USA)

  25. @Replica: I love the Enigma palette, I will post properly in the next couple of days. I’m never listening to my husband again when it comes to makeup purchasing decisions! I will give that eye look a try. I need something to cheer me up as I still haven’t got used to the colour.

    Well, as you know you made me look at the NARS and now I WANT! I have added that to my Spring want list.

    @GABY: Thank you. I’m still not quite used to it!

    @λειντι ντι: Thank you so much for the tips. I’ve had this sort of thing happen before but never quite as dark I don’t think. It’s taking some getting used to!

    @MarciaF: I have been taking the advice about the bronzer and it definitely helps. The moments without makeup on are still the most scary, mirror wise!

    @Janet: Hi there and thank you so much for your lovely comment. I’m so pleased you enjoy reading. I know that I’m probably over-reacting to the colour but as you say it’s so hard when it comes to your hair. There’s really no escaping or hiding it! I’m still wobbling though and might strip it out. We’ll see ;)

    Thanks for


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