Best "do it yourself" hair dye?

  1. What's the best brand of "do it yourself" hair dye? Or am I crazy to want to dye my hair myself? My hair's been highlighted for years, but I'm tired of it and want to go back at least close to my natural hair color (brunette). Are there any considerations for dying over highlights? Advice, please!!!
  2. I don't have any experience with highlights but I've been dying my own hair for about 6 years. My favorite is Garnier Nutrisse. I use Chocolate Cherry.

    If grey hair is a concern, I've heard L'oreal Excellence Cream is good for that.
  3. I have used Garnier for my roots which unfortunately grow back pretty quickly. It's great..doesn't have a toxic smell. :amuse:

    L'oreal Excellence Cream doesn't smell very good and it does not give good coverage to greys. My friend who is only 22 has silver hairs already and she tries to dye over them by herself, and L'oreal wouldn't dye over them. They were partially dyed I think. Good luck!
  4. I like Clairol Professional Radiance from Sallys... I use it as a glaze to boost color and shine. I usually mix up 1 part radiance dye with 3 parts clear gloss and 4 parts Radiance developer. But you can customize it any way you want. It's great because it's a "deposit-only" product, meaning it has no ammonia or peroxide so it won't lighten (or damage) hair.

    I did serious damage to my hair using drug store dyes so I will never use them again. Plus, I have so much hair that I needed 2-3 boxes each time so it didn't save me any money. I buy big bottles of the developer and clear gloss at Sallys and it ends up costing me <$50/year!
  5. It's not insane to dye your hair yourself, but if you are still nervous I would try out a non-permanent color, such as Clairol Natural Essences - My hair likes that brand and stays soft, and with how easily my hair turns reddish whether I use an ash tone or not (I have Irish roots, lol)...I like to color my hair more often, so non permanent colors from a drugstore are my best bet.

    Demi-permanent colors last a bit longer and aren't as harsh as permanent colors.

    If you're set on DIY haircolor, Claire had a great suggestion - and it isn't hard to mix your own color, you're basically doing it with drugstore box as well, it's just finding the right mixture of parts.

    If you're too scared of that, I've used just about every brand under the sun, so if you want to pm me with what your hair is like and how it tends to take color I can make a better suggestion for you as some brands do better on certain types of hair. :smile:
  6. ^I agree about using non-permanent color. I dyed my hair myself not too long ago with non-permanent and it looked fantastic. It's pretty much washed out now, but I should do it again.
  7. If you have highlighted hair and want to dye it at home there is a big chance the color will turn out horrible. You are putting dye over bleach highlights right??? Well color changes over bleached hair versus regular dyed hair. You may end up looking like a striped cat. I would go to a professional the first time and talk about what you can use to next time at home.
  8. i use natural instincts by clariol. it's a demi permenant so i feel like i'm not hurting my hair as badly (although it still has ammonia) and it washes out so i never have roots. i use a shade that's a little bit darker than my natural color.

    i agree with gillianna though....go to a colorist for the first dye over. after that you can maintain your natural color or go darker with home dye. i personally would always go to a colorist if you want to go darker than highlights but lighter than your natural color. lighter is so hard to get right at home.

    eta: claireZk that's a wonderful idea! i think i'm going to try that next time....
  9. ^^^ yeah, I realized that it was late last night and I typed the wrong name of the non-permanent haircolor - it is natural instincts by Clairol, my bad sorry!
  10. I use natural instincts by Clairol. It comes out even and it also makes your hair very shiny. it's also semi permanent, so it washes out in 24 shampoos.
  11. I also recommend Natural Instincts by Clairol. It's easy to use and pretty fool-proff, IMO. Also, since it washes out in 24-28 shampoos, you're not stuck with it if you don't like it. I did this as a trial since I have been considering getting rid of my highlights and going back to my natural medium brown. I'm very happy with the results. And it does make your hair shine like crazy!
  12. Whatever you do, don't use the John Frieda ones in brown (esp. chesnut / expresso) .. they stain your hands and maybe your forehead if you're not careful in the shower.

    It felt like it was making my hair drier but my hair DID look shinier.. just not smooth.
  13. if you're covering highlights--like the others said, it can be scary, especially if your hair has the tendency to get orangy or brassy.

    that being said, i've got the kind of hair that can get brassy when i put darks on it, and i found the best dye ever! its natrual instincts BRASS FREE!!! it only comes in a few shades, but its amazing, and doesnt cause the highlighted areas to get orangy.

    go to to find places its sold near you, ive had trouble finding it, but ordered it from!
  14. Thank you all for the tips and great advice. The "brass free" sounds quite interesting; I definitely have a horror of having brassy hair. I just want to go back to my natural dark brown, no lighter than my natural color. Would highlights take on an orange tone if I am trying to dye them brown? Maybe I'll try a little strand test of the Natural Instincts brass free and if I don't like that, I'll have my colorist dye it for me. Why does hair always have to be so complicated?!

    By the way, does anyone have experience with more natural hair coloring products, like henna, indigo, etc.? Henna scares me as I really don't want any red, but I was reading about blending henna with indigo and possibly amla to get an ash brown. I don't know about the henna though; it's supposed to be great for hair in terms of conditioning, but doesn't henna always turn hair red? Do the indigo and amla cancel out the henna? Anybody know? (It seems to me that indigo plus henna would equal purple, lol!)
  15. i've never done henna, it scares me too! and i'm pretty sure it doesn't really wash out, so you'd be stuck with it, if it doesn't come out as planned.

    personally---my highlights went reddish when i dyed my whole head brown (with an ash brown shade). i was so disgusted, and chopped most of my hair off because i hated the way it looked.

    but then i found the brass free, and couldnt be happier! my hair has no orange/red tinge, and the highlights have complete brown coverage. the ends lightened a bit after about 2 months, but i was ready for a trim anyways, so i just cut them off, and didnt even need to re-dye.

    good luck!