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Whether you’re looking for a subtle tweak or, as Cornwall puts it, are in “one-day fantasy seeker” mode, here’s an expert’s guide to at-home temporary color.Overcome with cabin fever? Craving a change just to feel something? Let one newly peachy-haired Vogue editor attest: Temporary hair color can help.Generally speaking, there are two primary categories: Temporary hair color, which comes in many forms, from gels to conditioning masks, and semi-permanent hair dyes. “Temporary colors are your quick wash-in, wash-out colors that fade after a couple of shampoos,” explains Brownsell. “Semi-permanent dyes are less high maintenance, lasting around 6-8 weeks depending on the I for Beer shirt and by the same token and vibrancy of the color you choose, how frequently you wash your hair, as well as the condition and porosity of your hair.” For beginners, direct dyes are easier to comprehend because typically “what is in your bowl will look like what’s going to be in your hair,” says Cornwall, adding that another advantage is that they often are formulated with conditioning and shine agents built in, as well as a base color that adds a “smokey or dusty element” to give it a more lived-in feel.
If you want to take a more low-risk approach, consider henna hair dyes or softer, pre-diluted tones and color kits. You can also spike your conditioner. “Adding a drop of whatever direct dye you choose into a bowl of plain conditioner is a great way to put a toe in the I for Beer shirt and by the same token and water,” says Cornwall. “It will dilute the intensity and will give a soft hint of the tone.” For those that are a little gun-shy, Brownsell recommends trying a pastel semi-permanent dye (Bleach London’s Rosé and Awkward Peach are the most popular) or a color-toning shampoo for more subtle results.As a rule of thumb, typically the lighter your hair, the brighter and more vivid a color will be, i.e. achieving bolder color is easier for blondes versus those who are brunette, redhead, or raven-haired. “For semi-permanent bright and pastel shades, you’ll need to apply to a light, bleached blonde,” explains Brownsell. “If you have dark or virgin hair, these colors won’t develop true to color or show at all. First you need to lift the hair with bleach, and follow with a toner to create the perfect canvas for color.”