Salon vs. DIY at Home
*Update for 2022: I should clarify the below. If you just want to have highlights added to your hair, I prefer to go to a salon. If you want to color/dye your hair one color, I prefer to do it at home.
Should I Dye My Hair at Home or Go to a Salon?
Deciding between paying $100+ at a salon to dye your hair or doing it at home? Learn why I prefer to dye my hair at home.
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Introduction to Christina Marie from Very Easy Makeup
My hair is naturally strawberry blonde. A pretty dark strawberry blonde.
When I was 5 years old, I was blonde, but it's gotten darker with age. Now I'm kind of a dark, dark blonde naturally.
The verdict: It is better to dye your hair at home.*
I’ve tried dying my hair at home and at a salon. After many tries, the verdict is final: no more hair salons! Dying hair at a salon equals mediocre hair color at best.
The biggest reason is the before and after pictures of going to a salon – versus what I get when I do my hair at home. The hair at home looks better. Even Sun In does a better job at making my hair blonde.
Before and After Pictures of Dying Hair Blonde at Home vs. a Salon
Here are a few before and after pics to help you decide!
After Pic of Using Wella T18 to Dye Hair Blonde at Home
After Pic of Using Wella T27 to Dye Hair Blonde at Home
After Pic of Going Blonde with Sun In at Home
After Pic of Paying $200 to go Blonde at a Salon
Before and After Pictures of Going Darker at Home vs. a Salon
And here are pics of me going from blonde to brown at home with John Frieda Brilliant Brunette Treatment vs. paying a lot at a salon!
After Pic of Brown Hair from a Salon (YUCK!!)
After Pic of Going Darker with John Frieda Brilliant Brunette
Benefits of Dying Your Hair at Home – Reasons to Dye Your Hair at Home
Here's why I prefer to dye my hair blonde at home (and go darker at home!).
1. It looks better (in my opinion)
See the before and after pictures below. I like my hair done by me more than by a stylist.
2. It's faster
You can color your hair in less than two hours.
3. Less damaging/can be gentler on your hair
The semi-permanent dyes work great. They are less damaging than permanent color and last more than eight weeks.
4. You get what you want
When shopping for toners or semi-permanent dyes, you can choose the exact color you want.
5. It's cheap
You can do your own color for $10-$20. Much less than any salon visit!
6. It's easy to change
Don’t love the color? Use a semi-permanent color or a toner, and change it up in one or two months.
7. No appointment is needed
No need to make an appointment and plan. Dye your hair whenever you have time. I prefer rainy or cold days. 🙂
You can color your hair whenever you have 1-2 hours to spare.
When You May Want to Go to a Salon – Reasons It’s Better to Go to a Salon
You may want to go to a salon if any of the following are true.
1. You have time
You have 3-4 hours to spare.
2. You know an amazing stylist
You’ve done your research, and have a stylist recommended by both a friend AND with good online reviews.
3. You want highlights only
You want highlights only. (Hard to do yourself).
4. You want to go significantly lighter in color
If you are changing more than three color levels, it’s likely best to go to a salon. For example, if you are going from a dark brown to a medium blonde, go to a salon.
5. You have the money
If you have the money to spare (at least $150), go ahead and go to a salon.
6. You like your stylist
If you love your stylish, go and see her!
I recently found a GREAT stylist for highlights and a haircut. She's cheaper than a therapist. 🤣
7. You find the experience relaxing
If you like the experience of getting your hair colored and cut, go ahead and do it!
8. You don't want to buy the supplies
You have to buy supplies to color your hair at home.
Don't want to worry about it? Then just go to a salon. It's easier!
9. You don't want to mess up your kitchen sink
Coloring your hair at home can be messy.
10. You want highlights or a balayage
can be a bit tricky to do at home. A balayage or an ombre are pretty hard to do yourself.
Alternatives to Dying Your Hair (at Home or at a Salon)
Not sure about dying your hair at home? Here are alternatives to dying your hair.
1. Go pink with L’Oreal
Want something fun? Give the L’Oreal Paris Colorista Semi-Permanent Hair Color a try. It stays on for 4-10 shampoos.
2. Use Sun In to go lighter
I swore by Sun-In for six years. It worked GREAT for me. Whenever I felt like being blonder, I simply sprayed this into my hair and then used a blow-dryer.
A similar product is Sun Bum Blonde. I haven’t used it before, but it’s similar to Sun-In for about twice the price.
3. Use a lightening shampoo to go blonder
If you have a base blonde, use a lightening shampoo that lightens your hair over time.
I used the John Frieda Sheer Blonde shampoo in combination with Sun-In and got great results. See pictures below.
Natural Hair Color (from College)
Results from Sun-In + John Freida Go Blonder Lightening Shampoo
More Creative and Fun Ways to Change Your Hair Color at Home
1. Color your hair with Kool-Aid
As a kid, my mom let us dye our hair. Want a cheap trick? Add Kool-Aid to water in the sink, dip your hair in, massage it, and POOF! I had red hair in fourth grade.
2. Get dark hair with Henna
You can use henna to dye your hair if you want to go dark. Like REALLY dark. My mom used to do this in college. It works!
3. Wear a wig
Want a low-risk color change? Wear a wig, like the one below. You can buy quality ones at many cancer centers.
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