A new year, a new you… and all that jazz. Admittedly, most resolutions tend to fall by the wayside after a few weeks, but a change to your hair is very achievable and, if you are adept at a little home colouring, quite affordable. Below is a list of hair favourites, based on the colour and result that these products can achieve. If you are yearning for a change to your lovely locks, have a browse and see if something appeals to you. Naturally, the result achieved from these colourants depends on the condition and colour of the hair beforehand, as well as a correct application, but when done properly and under the right conditions, each of these dyes perform wonderfully.
The list is divided into pastels, red, blonde, brunette and black, with different shades within each category. This is not a definitive list, as there are plenty of other excellent shades and options out there, but these are personal favourites, tried and tested and much loved for their colour pay-off.
So, have some fun in 2017 and mix it up a little. Don’t forget to read the instructions very carefully for the individual products and never push your hair to the point of damage.
BLEACH London Super Cool Colour Violet Skies, €6.99
It’s very important to note that this product is only for those with the lightest of blonde hair, as in platinum/white. This product creates a very soft purple tone on the hair, as opposed to a full colouring. However, its ‘barely there’ tint is extremely pretty and understated. Be advised that these cream colourants, unfortunately, are not made to last. They are said to survive 2-10 washes, but this depends on the intensity of the colour. You will get longer out of the brighter tones, such as the Bruised Violet shade, but don’t expect to get away with more than 4 or 5 washes with this one. Remember, the warmer the water, the quicker the fade, so perhaps consider lukewarm/cool water when washing.
BLEACH London Super Cool Colour Awkward Peach, €6.99
Awkward Peach is another shade from the Bleach London range that has a lovely colour pay-off. The finished result when applied properly resembles that of the classic Fruit Salad sweets – a lovely pinky/orange tone. Hair doesn’t need to quite as light to get the most out of this shade. The Violet Skies shade above requires a cool undertone, but you can get away with a warm/red undertone with the peach, which makes it a tad more achievable.
L’Oréal Paris Préférence Infinia P78 Paprika Power, €10.99
Red hair has been hugely popular in the last five years and we often see the same shades over and over again, but this bright orange surprise is anything but boring. Depending on how light the hair was previously, the sheer vibrancy of this colour is startlingly gorgeous. Though it would not be to everyone’s taste, it is certainly a welcome option for those looking to experiment. This range also includes a bottle of Colour Extender, which is essentially a small portion of cream colourant that you can top up with in the weeks following the initial colouring. Note: make sure to use gloves when applying the Colour Extender, as it will dye your hands a rather alarming shade of orange.
Garnier Nutrisse Ultra Permanent Colour 2.6 Dark Cherry, €8.99
For a deeper, ruby-like red, this Garnier Nutrisse option is ideal. It works wonders on most brunettes, even if the hair is on the darker end of the spectrum, as it adds a warm, reddish sheen, even if the colour cannot translate as bright as it appears above. This colourant can be a tad drying on the hair, so setting aside ample time for a proper conditioning is well worth it.
Clairol Nice’n Easy Permanent Colour 9A Natural Light Ash Blonde, €8.59
Nice ‘n Easy have an excellent range of blondes available, from the very lightest, to honey shades and dark, golden tones. This Light Ash shade is a particular favourite due to its cool tone. The result is neither yellow, nor brassy, and feels very natural. It’s a good option for those left with unwanted red tones after having their hair lightened.
Garnier Nutrisse Crème Permanent Hair Colour 10.01 Natural Baby Blonde, €8.99
If ash blonde does not appeal, but a light blonde is still on the wishlist, this Baby Blonde may work out nicely. It layers warmer blonde tones onto the hair, for pale, golden locks. Do consider that these shades are only achievable if your hair is already light enough to take them. If you are darker, it is safer to get a professional to lighten it for you, before you do blonde at home. Not only is blonde the hardest to achieve, it also poses the most problems in terms of hair damage.
L’Oréal Paris Casting Creme Gloss 554 Chili Chocolate, €10.88
Here is a brown with red ambitions. This wonderfully titled ‘Chilli Chocolate’ brown has a colour result that lives up to its promises. This is a warm, spicy brown that just fits into the redhead category. The Casting Creme colourants are semi-permanent and without ammonia, so they should be less harsh on the hair than most permanent dye. Despite being a ‘semi’, the colour lasts extremely well and even when it fades, it does so nicely.
Schwarzkopf LIVE Intense Colour 088 Urban Brown, €7.29
This is a great brown for any skin tone and any age. It is that perfect middling tone, neither too dark, nor too light, with a lovely warmth throughout and a chestnut tone that keeps it looking rich.
L’Oréal Paris Préférence 5.3 Siena Golden Brown, €10.99
When looking to lift dark brown hair or move from dark blonde into brunette, golden brown can be a suitable option. This ‘Siena’ shade is both rich and natural-looking, making it suitable for any age.
L’Oréal Paris Préférence 3 Brasilia Dark Brown, €10.99
If dark and sultry is the aim, this is the perfect shade. This smoking brown is almost black when applied, but it retains a cocoa sheen that keeps it in the brunette category.
Schwarzkopf LIVE Intense Colour 090 Cosmic Blue Hair Dye, €7.29
When deciding on a black shade to include, this blue/black hair colour could not be left out. Far from the classic black, this has a tonal twist that is a little different, without being too obvious. Despite the name, the result after applying this dye is predominantly black, but with a subtle blue sheen. This is a welcome alternative to a natural black, ideal for those who are naturally dark but want something a little quirkier for the new year.