How to Approach a Fantasy Color Correction

(GILAD GOLDSTEIN (@myguiltycrown)

Fantasy haircolors are always beautiful. Vibrant reds, bright yellows and rich blues make our hairdresser hearts sing with joy! I am always excited when a guest sits in my chair who wants to make a statement with her hair. However, the challenge with fantasy haircolor is getting the right canvas to apply them on. Not every client comes in with platinum blonde hair and no roots. And, not every client has natural virgin hair that is extremely easy to lift. Mastering the art of lightening hair and toning for the perfect canvas is essential in becoming an expert at fantasy haircolor.

When a guest sits in my chair and asks for new haircolor, the first step is to analyze what is already sitting on and in their hair. Ask yourself, “Is this oxidative color or is this a direct dye?” “Is this lighter or darker than our target haircolor?” “Is this the same tonal value as the desired haircolor?” These questions are extremely important because they will help us determine the steps necessary to achieve the desired look. Usually, the first step is removing previous haircolor to get the necessary level of lightness.

In the case below, we started with faded out green and red tones. We determined that these were semi-permanent dyes comprised of direct dyes. We decided to remove the direct dyes with Redken City Beats Color Remover. This product is great for removing direct and oxidative dyes depending on how it is mixed. We mixed the the Color Remover with warm water and applied it to the hair, saturating heavily and massaging it in. The key to removing direct dyes is saturation and abrasion. The product will help to loosen the direct dyes that are latched to the cuticle, and massaging the hair will move those dyes out to the surface and promote better lightening. This make the product more effective than if it were just left to sit. 

Once the initial color was removed, we applied Redken Shades EQ Gloss to create a beautiful platinum white canvas. Our formula was .5OZ 09T + .5oz 09V + 1oz 000 Clear + 2oz Shades EQ Procession Solution. The Titanium and Violet shades perfectly neutralized any yellow in the hair and created an icy white finish that is perfectly prepped for fantasy color!

We loved the icy end result, but what we love even more is that the hair is now prepped for her to apply any vibrant or pastel shade she desired. The key was analyzing the hair, consulting the client on past color history, and using this knowledge to determine the products necessary for success. Follow these steps and you will always have a great time transforming your clients in to fantasy color queens!