April 6, 2016

When it comes to coloring your hair, there are two camps: the at-home box color brigade and those who swear by the salon. If you’re a box color gal (or fella), you might not see the value in paying someone to do what you can achieve at home. But that’s just the thing – unless you’re a trained colorist, you can’t.

What makes salon color different?

The biggest difference in the professional color process is customization—and it all starts with a one-on-one consultation.

“Spending 10-15 minutes in a good conversation with the guest is so important!” “I want to get to know them – what they like, and, sometimes more importantly, what they don’t like. I want to give them exactly what they want, and the consultation is the best way to do this—and it’s complimentary.” says Salon DeLonjay owner Becky DeLonjay

This means you don’t just go blonde. Instead, you attain the perfect shade of icy champagne or golden wheat, imagined and created to perfectly suit your coloring and your lifestyle. It means you don’t just cover grey—you receive an assessment from a professional who expertly blends and conceals, leaving you with dimensional, flattering color uniquely suited to your hair type and texture.

What do I gain from working with a professional colorist?

As fashion and beauty professionals, colorists tirelessly monitor the industry’s reigning trends, techniques, and products. And not only are they aware of them—they’re constantly pursuing advanced education to ensure they’re able to deliver the same results to their clients, beautifully.

“Right now guests are coming in asking for balayage,” says Becky DeLonjay. “It’s a freehand hair painting technique that gives this lived-in fresh hair color look that’s really beautiful.”

What am I risking when I use box color?

You don’t close your eyes, reach into your closet, and hope you grab something good. Everyone’s hair takes color differently, so when you DIY, you’re essentially looking at a swatch and hoping that the end result measures up. (Ever ordered a red dress that turned out to be more of a fiery orange? Far more tragic when it happens to your hair.)

And when box color goes wrong, it goes terribly wrong. (Let’s not even talk about bleach burns.) Ask any colorist, color correction is not an easy process, and it costs far more than if you’d just gone to a professional in the first place. Save yourself the tears, your hair the damage, and your wallet the unbearable sense of emptiness, and place a call to a colorist.

How do I make sure I get what I want?

When you work with a professional, your dream color is more attainable than you ever thought possible. Even better, he or she can recommend a similar shade when necessary, perhaps better suited to your coloring or needs.

And as Descartes would agree, it’s better to show a picture than to explain one. To help hit the mark, we recommend you bring at least one inspiration photo when you meet your colorist for the first time. “Pictures provide a common language between guests and colorists that is invaluable to the service,” says Becky. “We want our guests to love their color.”

When seeking inspiration, try searching for hashtags of hair trends on Pinterest or Instagram

So, what’s the bottom line?

A good color service can simultaneously reawaken you, refresh you, take years off, and be the perfect unique expression of your personal style. Even the best kits on the market damage your hair, fade quickly, and can’t compare with the depth of color and longevity of professional color. It’s not easy to become a certified colorist, and the skill attained in those years of training and experience can’t be measured.

With a box, you’re paying for the chemicals. With a professional color service, you’re paying for expertise, creativity, understanding, chemistry, precision, customization, safety, certainty, and artisanship. You become a walking work of art, whether you walk out of the salon with gorgeous mermaid hair or with the perfect shade of rich chestnut brown—one that makes your skin glow and your eye color pop.

Why leave that to chance?

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