10 Things You Need to Know Before Getting Your Hair Colored
For some reason when the weather changes, I always took that as a chance to change my hair color. I loved doing bold colors in the winter and that just so happens to be the same time when your hair needs the most care.
Coloring your hair can cause a lot of shock to your strands. Colors and dyes use a high pH to force the hair strands open and deposit color into them. This process can be incredibly damaging to your hair if improperly cared for before, during, and after the chemicals are applied to your hair.
I used to color my own hair, (bright red) and failed to keep up with the maintenance that it took. When I moved to Alabama in 2012 I had to cut all of my hair off because of chemical damage from the color. I told myself that from here on out if I wanted to color my hair, I would go to a professional. I got the itch to color my hair AGAIN because I missed having red hair so I found an AMAZING stylist, Latasha Harrington. She has colored my hair multiple times and helped me become more knowledgeable on exactly what's going on with my hair while she is coloring it.
I asked her a few questions about things everyone should know when getting their hair colored, especially in the winter:
Rikk: So many women want to change their hair color, especially when the weather changes. What are some tips you can give on choosing the right color if this is your first time coloring your hair?
Tasha: Choosing the right colorist, stylist is a major key when getting color for the first time! There are so many factors that go in to choosing the right color such as your skin tone, hair history, color allergies, lifestyle, and your personality. A seasoned stylist will be able to do a thorough analysis on your hair to be sure that it is healthy enough for color. I suggest starting off with a rich color that complements your wardrobe seasonally and that complements your skin tone. Everyone looks great in the right shade of red or blonde. Clip-in colored extensions are a great option before committing to a permanent color change!
Rikk: What's the difference between coloring your hair at home vs. coming into the salon?
: One size does NOT fit all! Box color is one dimensional and unfortunately what you see on the box is not what you get. Your hair color should be tailored to fit you. Colorist will generally mix 2-3 colors to get the right custom shade for you. We love creating beautiful multi-dimensional looks!
Rikk: I want to color my hair from a really dark color to a lighter color, like blonde or even red. What are some things I should be aware of when brightening my natural hair?
: So many of us know or are that someone who went from jet black to brassy orange on the ends and white light roots in an attempt to be blonde in one afternoon. So be aware that going from dark to light will take time! Think about color on a scale of 0 to 100. Going from 0 (jet black) up to 50 (red) is generally safe on healthy hair. However, 0 to 100 is not safe in one visit! Expect to have 3-5 visits to go from dark to very light. My favorite hair color no-no celebrity is Kim Kardashian West. As gorgeous as her platinum blonde was the entire professional colorist community was cringing! She faded back to black days later. It was simply too much too soon.
Rikk: How far in advance should I make my appointment if I'm getting my hair colored for the first time? Is their usually a consultation?
: I suggest booking a consultation and/or regular shampoo and style appointment first. Building a good stylist, guest relationship is very important! Also most colors require an allergy skin test 48 hours before your appointment.
Rikk: What are some pros and cons of coloring your hair?
Tasha: I think the biggest pro is that you can totally transform yourself! I personally find it liberating whenever I change my hair color! The biggest con is having your color botched at home and having to spend a lot of time and money correcting it.
Rikk: Should I bring in photos to my stylist?
: Absolutely! Pictures are a great way for you to communicate your color goals.
Rikk: Do you have any hair color horror stories to tell? Like was there ever a time where coloring your hair just went WRONG?
: I don't personally have any! But I will share my big sisters horror story! She had her hair colored a very light brown to dark color and 2 weeks later it was time for her relaxer. Her hair basically melted! You can have both but the timing was wrong! She was due for her relaxer soon and should have gotten it done first and then 2 weeks later had the color done. So my anti-weave sis was in a full sew-in until her hair was long enough to be bob length.
Rikk: What are some products you suggest your clients use after coloring their hair?
: Always use products that are sulfate-free, salt-free and that are specifically for color treated hair. They will help keep your color from fading too quickly from heat styling and harmful UVA/UVB rays from the sun. I am currently loving any product that is infused with rosemary, sage, and baobab! Read those labels!
Rikk: What are some tips on how to maintain HEALTHY hair after getting your hair colored?
: Keep the moisture and protein balanced! The best time to impart moisture and protein is while your hair is wet. A heated deep condition will help infuse the product deep into the hair. Never skip your leave-in conditioner and use a light daily hair lotion. Also, be sure to cut back on heat styling! Hot tools fade color and cause lots of dryness and breakage to the ends.
Rikk: Where can we find out more about LaTasha Harrington? And how can I book you?
: To check out some of my work and booking you can find me on Instagram
or visit my website at