WHETHER you’re self-isolating, working from home or manning the fort as an essential worker (in which case, thank you), one thing is for sure — anyone who normally has their hair coloured professionally is not going to be doing so for the next few months.
It’s a matter of some amusement on social media, where the ‘we’re one month away from knowing everyone’s true hair colour’ memes are bouncing around with riotous abandon.
While we will all count ourselves lucky if not seeing the inside of a hair salon for a while is the biggest hardship we endure during this crisis, do not discount the fact that, for many, looking ‘ourselves’ also plays an important role in mental health.
So we have spoken to three of the country’s best colourists — Josh Wood, Nicola Clarke and Amy Fish — to ask them how those with coloured hair can see out the lockdown in style.
I want to cover my greys. What should I do?
‘Now is not the time to do a big overhaul,’ says Josh Wood of celebrity favourite the Josh Wood Atelier. ‘But covering or blending grey hair at the root is something most could manage at home.’
Josh Wood has 12 permanent ‘kind to hair’ colour shades available that don’t contain ammonia and cover 100 per cent of grey (£10, joshwood colour.com). On his website, Wood also offers a live-chat service whereby a colourist will recommend the correct product for you. You can even send in an image with what you are looking to achieve and a colour technician will help you meet your needs.
‘It’s very important to make sure you are aware of what your original colour is, the colour you are colouring and what you want to be,’ says Wood. ‘That will help you not to go too dark or to end up with a root colour that’s lighter than the body of your hair.’
What about those with highlights?
‘You shouldn’t start highlighting your own hair or bleaching it,’ says Amy Fish of the Larry King salon. ‘Colourists train for years to be able to highlight hair properly. Instead, try the Shade Shots from Josh Wood (£15, joshwoodcolour.com), a gloss that brings colour back to life.
‘Color Wow also makes a Root Touch Up blonde powder that can be painted on to the front of the hair to give a little lightness around the face [£28, colorwowhair.com] and it lasts until the next shampoo. Each palette contains enough product to last six months or more.’
Josh Wood agrees blondes should step away from the home bleach.
‘Going lighter is difficult because the products at home don’t give you the right amount of lift or bleach that there is in a salon,’ he says.
‘If you’re blonde with highlights try a toner or a gloss to refresh the colour you have.’
Invest in good products
‘The best way to maintain your colour fresh at home is by using great shampoos, conditioners and treatments to keep the hair moisturised and supple, which helps make the colour last longer,’ says ‘queen of blondes’ Nicola Clarke, of John Frieda.
‘One of my favourites is the Virtue Refresh collection. The Purifying shampoo [£26, cultbeauty.co.uk] gives your hair a weekly detox as it removes excess oil, product residue, pollution and smoke, leaving hair fresh and renewed.’
The Virtue Smooth or Recovery shampoo (£34, net-a-porter.co.uk) keeps hair soft and restored too.
And for the brunettes?
‘When colouring brown at home I would say it is always better to get a shade lighter,’ says Wood. ‘If you are unsure of your base shade we recommend colour matching to your lightest natural shade.’
For wannabe brunettes who are covering greys, Wood says: ‘If you don’t want to continuously have a very obvious regrowth between the dark brown and the grey, the only option is to not be so dark any more and go a little lighter.’
And if you have an all-over tint?
‘It’s totally OK to maintain grey coverage or a tint from home,’ says Wood. ‘Always start your colour application at the point of your hair that is the most grey. Concentrate on covering your roots and just refresh on the ends.’
Amy Fish agrees and recommends painting the hairline ‘where you can see it and around the parting — no one sees the underneath at the back so leave that until you can get in to a salon’.
However, she warns: ‘If you overlap too much of the hair it can cause it to go darker, so be sparing.’
If in doubt, fake it
‘Please don’t “play” with box dyes,’ says Nicola Clarke. ‘Temporary solutions such as coloured sprays and palettes are a great substitute — they cover roots and greys seamlessly.
‘A clever at-home trick is to change your parting so it covers the roots — simple but effective.’
Again, Fish likes Color Wow’s Root Cover Up kits for this, which contain a mineral powder that can be dusted along the parting to minimise the look of regrowth (£28.50, colorwowhair.com).
She’s not alone — the brand saw a 200 per cent rise in demand for these kits in the ten days before the country went into lockdown.
Hair masks are your new best friend
‘These are the best times to condition your hair with leave-on masks that we usually rush through or don’t do until the last minute, by which point it’s normally too late,’ says Nicola Clarke.
Amy Fish is also a mask fan. One of her favourites is the Bleach London Beer Mask (£10, cultbeauty.co.uk). ‘It contains yeast proteins to enrich the hair,’ she says.
And for blondes, hair masks can be transformative in terms of colour.
‘Quite often when blondes feel they need their roots retouched, a lot of it is actually about hydration,’ says Josh Wood.
‘I’m sure everybody has a hair mask in the back of their bathroom cabinet that they’ve never used. We have one called the Everything Mask [£15, joshwood colour.com.
‘It really can make any hair colour look refreshed and hydrated.’
Bleach London, famous around the world for its cool kaleidoscope colours, is guiding customers through ‘self dye-solation’ with the launch of its Hair Party series: interactive tutorials led by Bleach stylists.
Watch long-standing ‘clients and friends of Bleach’ Georgia May Jagger, Pixie Geldof, Nick Grimshaw and Mesh Henry all dyeing their hair live, led by co-founder and celeb stylist Alex Brownsell.
Joining is simple — just head to chat.bleachlondon.com, which will then recommend the products you need.
Buy your Hair Party Pack, then simply stay home and wait for the secret access email to join the party.
Take it all in your stride
Pimp up your leggings — and support your high street online, says Amy Dawson
■ Black faux leather £15.30, dorothyperkins.com
A lot of people are only really seeing others from the waist up at the moment (hello Zoom), which is a shame when you’re wearing leggings like these. No longer just for sport or a mid-Noughties fashion moment we’d rather forget, leggings are now all grown-up and on-trend after getting the catwalk treatment by the likes of Chanel. These high-street store pairs are perfect for lifting the spirits.
Leopard print £32, hush-uk.com
Snakeskin £8, hm.com
Contrast £15.99, Mango
Purple £17.99, zara.com
Paint print £12.50, marksandspencer.com