8 Helpful Tips For Multicolored Colored Hair

So you’ve dyed your hair with multiple colors. Maybe it’s a rainbow pattern or patchwork sections. Maybe it’s just a few streaks to add a bit of funk to your otherwise monochromatic ‘do. But now the panic and worry sets in – that dark blue you love beside the light pink is TAKING OVER!

Your hair looks like a bad finger painting instead of the sleek multi-toned ombre you saw online. Or maybe even that fiery red and sunshine yellow combo you thought would look oh-so-dramatic has transformed into a hideous orange that’s made your children (and your children’s friends) start calling you pumpkin head (shush kids, mommy’s stressing).

Never fear. We’ve got the tips to make sure none of the above ever happens to you or anyone else. Ever. Because kids are mean and you are amazing – so your hair should be too.

#1 Get to know the Color Wheel

When you dye your hair multiple colors, you want to ensure two things: that the colors look as good side-by-side on your head as they do in the bottle; and that if, heaven forbid, the colors do blend together, they don’t transform into something unwanted.

In order to be 100% (or as close to as possible), study the color wheel. It is the basic chemistry of color, if you know where to look.

  1. Primary colors (red, blue, yellow)
    • These mix to create the secondary colors (green, orange, violet);
    • If you want to make your own colors by blending dyes, invest in primary colors for the best results.
  2. Complementary colors
    • These are colors directly across from each other on the wheel (ex. yellow and violet or red and green);
    • When complementary colors blend, they neutralize each other creating grays, browns or, when used as toners, removing faded colors.
  3. Analogous colors
    • These are neighbors on the color wheel (ex. blue-green and green or yellow-orange and orange).
    • When used side-by-side or blended, these boost depth and vibrancy. Use these as streaks and highlights for an epic look.

By using the right color combinations, you can avoid a lot of potential heartache! And look amazing too.

#2 Prevent Color Takeovers

When you have multiple colors in your hair, one color seeps into another to create something new and unexpected, or to take over completely. This is especially the case with dark and light color combos. If you want to do a navy blue with a pastel pink, put the pink higher up on your head than the blue. This way the pink will bleed into the blue (with little to no effect) instead of the blue bleeding into the pink (with a complete transformation to blue).

For other color combinations, check the color wheel mentioned above to see what might occur when the colors blend together. If you plan it right, the bleeds will only enhance the color!

#3 Use Conditioner or Vaseline to Keep Hair Dye-Free

For those days when you’re looking to dye just a small section (or sections) of your hair, smother the hair you don’t want to color with conditioner or vaseline to prevent the dye from catching. (In fact, you should smear that stuff on your skin, ears and neck too, to keep your skin dye-free).

#4 Tinfoil is your Best Friend

When you dye your hair many different colors, it can be a challenge to make sure that the dye goes on the right section of your head. This is where tinfoil comes in and saves the day. Cut sections of foil before you start. Slide the section under your hair, brush on the dye, fold the foil up and pin it in place with a plastic clip (do not use metal clips on the foil!). Continue until you’ve done all the sections and let sit!

#5 Wash with Cold Water

Cold water closes your hair, trapping the dyes in each strand. It’ll prevent the colors from bleeding together, make them last longer and help to keep your hair from drying out.

#6 Avoid Color Shampoos & Conditioners

Hair products made for colored hair tend to be made for one color of hair, not all. If you have a red-based shampoo or conditioner, it will tint your non-red colors and make them… well… redder. Make sure the product you use is color neutral, so that every color in your hair has a shot!

#7 Wash Sections Separately

If you’re worried about color bleeding, try washing each section of your hair separately. Tie up the darker colors and wash the light. Then vice versa. It’ll add time to your shower, but who doesn’t love a nice, long shower?

#8 Try to Stick to the Same Brand

When you have multiple colors, it can be easy to get caught up in the color itself and ignore the brand. Many people have their favorite brands, so it isn’t a problem. But sometimes, those rare sometimes, you want to try out the yellow from one and the red from another – be careful! Different brands use different ingredients in their dyes; those ingredients when mixed could cause caustic reactions.

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View Comments

  • I've had alot of fun with hair and all the crazy ass colors. I've done a rainbow, red, white and blue, 3 different lime type greens with a cheetah print in pink fetish and cobalt spot on the shaved back, my hair looked like candy corn for Halloween. So I want to do green and purple for Christmas. Wish me luck I've so far been lucky and relieved n lots of compliments.

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