If you love to color your hair but loathe the dark roots that make an appearance just a few weeks after your session, ombré hair color may be the way around this. Ombré hair has been a popular hair color technique for years, featuring a gradation of color with dark roots and lighter ends.
Ombré hair naturally has less maintenance than traditional foil highlights because the intentional dark roots are very forgiving on outgrowth and prevents the need for routine upkeep. Rather than booking a salon appointment to get the look, DIY ombré hair is very possible when you have the right product and a little information. So, keep reading as we share how to ombré hair at home, including a permanent fix, a temporary alternative, plus how to care for ombré hair color.
What Is Ombré Hair?
The color technique showcases a dramatic gradient effect with darker color at the roots transitioning into lighter color at the ends. Unlike foil highlights or balayage, ombré hair is all-over color with a seamless shift of dark to light tones.
What You Need to Know Before Attempting DIY Ombré Hair
While ombré hair is less maintenance than other hair color techniques, that doesn’t mean it’s free of upkeep. Here are a couple of things to keep in mind before you ombré your hair at home.
1. Ombré Hair Requires Bleach
Ombré hair is marked by lightened ends and that means bleaching is part of the dyeing process. The darker your starting color (for example, dark brown hair or black hair), the more time it may take to achieve your desired look. If your goal is dark roots with honey blonde ombré, it’s going to take a few rounds of bleach before your hair is light enough.
2. You’ll Need Regular Trims
While you won’t need to get your hair touched up as often when you’re sporting ombré hair color, you will need to maintain regular haircuts every eight to ten weeks. As we mentioned, ombré hair requires bleach which can make your strands more susceptible to hair breakage and split ends.
Regular trims are the best way to remove the damage and keep your hair healthy. If you avoid haircuts because you like to keep your style long, consider a hair dusting over a regular trim.
How to Get Ombré Hair at Home With Bleach
If you want to rock the ombré hair trend for more than a few days, using bleach to lighten your strands is the way to go. Check out our step-by-step guide to DIY ombré hair with bleach.
Step 1. Get an At-Home Bleaching Kit
To bleach your hair at home, head to the drugstore and grab the L’Oréal Paris Colorista Bleach in Ombré Bleach. This kit comes with everything you need to get ombré hair, including lightening cream, a precise applicator brush and gloves. It also allows you to customize your final look for subtle or bold ombré hair color depending on your preferences.
Don’t forget to read the included instructions before you start applying the bleach to your ends.
Step 2. Apply Hair Dye or a Toning Gloss
If you don’t think your look is complete after bleaching, you can apply color or toner on top of your lightened ends. Consider using semi-permanent hair dye, like the L’Oréal Paris Colorista Semi-Permanent Hair Color to transform your ends with pink or blue color.
If you prefer to tone your ends, which can give your ombré color an ashy undertone, try an in-shower glossing treatment like the L’Oréal Paris Le Color Gloss One Step In-Shower Toning Gloss in Clear or Cool Blonde. In as little as 15 minutes, this toning gloss corrects lackluster and brassy color while deep conditioning strands. It’s just the kind of nourishment your hair will need after a bleaching session.
How to Do Ombré Hair at Home With Temporary Hair Dye
If you’re not quite ready to play with bleach, you can use temporary hair color to give ombré hair a go without the long-term commitment. Check out our step-by-step guide to DIY ombré hair with semi-permanent hair color.
Step 1. Pick Two Shades of Temporary Color
Pick two complementary shades of the L’Oréal Paris Colorista Hair Makeup Temporary 1-Day Hair Color Spray. To create your ombré hair, you’ll want to pick a variation of the same shade, one darker and one lighter. We recommend pairing Rose Gold with Hot Pink or Pastel Lavender and Purple.
This temporary dye lasts until your next shampoo so there’s no need to commit to one shade.
Step 2. Spray the Darker Shade on the Top Section of Your Hair
Take the darker of the two shades and begin to spray the upper half of your hair, holding the can four to six inches away. It’s up to you to decide if you want your color to begin at the roots or a couple of inches down. Wait a couple of minutes for the color to dry before touching up any areas because the color will become more visible once it dries.
Step 3. Spray the Lighter Shade on the Mid-Lengths and Ends
Take the lighter shade, holding the can four to six inches away and begin to spray the remainder of your uncolored hair through the ends. Wait another few minutes to let the color dry and style your hair as usual.
How to Take Care Of Ombré Hair
Once you have your ombré hair, it’s important to care for it properly — enlist the help of color-treated shampoo, purple shampoo and heat protectant. Check out our top tips for caring for ombré hair.
1. Use a Sulfate-Free System for Color Treated Hair
A sulfate-free shampoo and conditioner like the L’Oréal Paris EverPure Sulfate-Free Color Care Bond Strengthening Shampoo and the L’Oréal Paris EverPure Sulfate-Free Bond Strengthening Conditioner are essential for preserving your colored strands.
This strengthening duo works to strengthen color-treated hair inside and out by reinforcing weak hair bonds. Ombré hair requires bleach and this system strengthens your bleached hair as it protects against future damage.
2. Maintain Your Color With Purple Shampoo
Bleached hair can succumb to brassy tones so curb them with a purple shampoo like the L’Oréal Paris EverPure Sulfate-Free Brass Toning Purple Shampoo. With purple dyes, this shampoo neutralizes unwanted yellow and orange tones in highlighted blonde, bleached and silver hair. Depending on how often you wash your hair, aim to use it every few shampoos or once a week.
After you’ve washed your strands with purple shampoo, follow up with the L’Oréal Paris EverPure Sulfate-Free Brass Toning Purple Conditioner. You can also use the aforementioned L’Oréal Paris Le Color Gloss One Step In-Shower Toning Gloss once a week to deep condition strands and correct dull, faded color.
3. Air Dry Your Strands
Using hot tools on a frequent basis can further damage your bleached strands. When you can, take a break from your hot tools and let your hair air dry. Those with wavy and curly hair should use the L’Oréal Paris Elvive Dream Lengths Curls Non-Stop Dreamy Curls Leave-in Conditioner to enhance their natural curls. Those with straight tresses can opt for the L’Oréal Paris Elvive Dream Lengths No Haircut Cream Leave In Conditioner to smooth hair, control frizz and seal split ends.
If you’re going to use hot tools, always prime with a heat protectant like the L’Oréal Paris EverPure Sulfate-Free Weightless Blow Dry Primer, Heat Protectant or L’Oréal Paris Elvive Dream Lengths Frizz Killer Serum Leave-In. Another good tip is to use your blow dryer, curling iron or flat iron on the lowest temperature setting and only pass through each section of hair once.
Photo Credit: iStock
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